The grandparent’s dilemma
Thursday December 08th 2022, 10:08 pm
Filed under: Life

It’s that time of year again: the one where you recycle what you know is a perfectly good box (plus about five more) and you know you’re going to want it in two or three weeks but you think you have plenty of time to find another one and not have this cluttering up your house, and besides, you don’t even know what you’re going to need then because the things you’re going to be packing haven’t even come yet, much less gotten wrapped.

And then two or three weeks later you sit there with everything looking all pretty for their trees and ready to go, your tape measure in hand and your screen open to USPS Send–Pricing.

Your largest box, which came Santa-ing six grandkids in two different states, is a lot bigger than you need.

The next largest is a half inch too small and you only just managed not to shred the wrapping paper trying.

But, but, you just had that other one…

Because they want $83-something for that monster one. Doesn’t matter what it weighs (to a point irrelevant to the question at hand), it’s oversize. And they’re happy to offer incentive to ship smaller.

I could ship way bigger for that much: at Southwest’s very best sale fares, I could fly me there and hand-deliver a free suitcase’s worth in person. Just not in December.

I need a 22.5×16.5×11.5H if it even exists, plus a little extra for the December birthday presents (but they can go separately.)

I knew, I knew I was going to need that earlier box, but did I listen to me? Did I open the bin outside to see if it was even retrievable after being stomped on, like it kept pleading for me to do?

It is I-told-you-so-ing faintly from whatever it’s being reincarnated into. Likely more boxes.

3 Comments so far
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JDM Packing Supplies on Bascom in San Jose. They have boxes of every imaginable size. They also offer UPS shipping. There used to be one on Sunnyvale-Saratoga near Fremont in Sunnyvale, but I don’t know if they are still there. (They also go by the name EPS). Parking is a bit tricky. The owners are extremely helpful.

Comment by Anne 12.09.22 @ 1:37 am

If a box is close to 12*12*12 in volume (that’s what the USPS mostly cares about in its swap from weight to volume), we keep it until January. Does that mean our home has a bunch of boxes in it? Yep. Is it worth it? Also yep.

(that said, if you have larger boxes and the things that are going in the boxes aren’t very fragile, you can cut larger boxes down to size – the easiest is if you just need to cut the flaps deeper into the box: slice down the size to the right point, cut off part of the newly-longer flaps, fold them to their new edges; but you can also shrink the circumferences of boxes with more effort: cut box in half “diagonally” [not including the flaps] and fold parts of the two half-boxes over each other to make a new box with two extra-reinforced corners. Just make sure the volume of your new box won’t be greater than 12*12*12.)

(but also: don’t do this with shaky hands, and be sure you’re wearing shoes. No blood on the Christmas delivery boxes!)

You can also buy boxes from various places – office supply stores, UPS stores, etc. – and that might well be the way to go!

Comment by KC 12.09.22 @ 11:04 am

Isn’t that always the way it goes?

Comment by ccr in MA 12.09.22 @ 11:13 am

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