Merry Grinchmas! Today I’ll be sharing how we “Grinch” our friends at Christmas. In short, “Grinching” is essentially booing your friends or neighbors for Christmas with a white elephant gift.
You’ve Been Boo’ed
If you’ve ever boo’ed your friends, or been boo’ed, you know about this fun Halloween tradition.
Its where you secretly drop off yummy treats or fun surprises at your friends’ or neighbors’ houses around Halloween. Included with each “package” is a note letting them know that they’ve been boo’ed, and asking them to boo two more friends or neighbors.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
Everyone’s read the Dr. Suess book How the Grinch Stole Christmas! You’ve probably also seen the animated or live movie version of the book (Jack and Madison think the scene with the Grinch as a baby is just hilarious).
Well, a few years ago, we were watching the movie, and trying to think of something fun to do around Christmas that was similar to booing your friends. Most of our friends in our mommy-and-me playgroup were pretty spread out, and there was no one close by for us to boo that year.
We wanted to do something for our friends, such as a fun but harmless prank. It had to be something unique, and just the sort of sick humor they’d appreciate.
Then we got an idea!
An aweful idea!
GOT A WONDERFUL, AWEFUL IDEA!
We decided we would “Grinch” our friends with a white elephant Christmas gift!
The plan was simple: prepare a “care” package of gag gifts and our own unique Christmas version of the “You’ve been boo’ed” sign, and doorbell ditch our friends.
If you’ve never heard of a white elephant party, the idea is pretty simple. You bring an unlabeled, inexpensive, and useless (but fun) wrapped present to the party. Everyone draws numbers, and on each turn, you either unwrap a random present, or steal one that has already been opened from someone else. Everyone ends up with a ridiculous gift, and has a good laugh in the process.
You’ve Been Grinched!
To Grinch our friends, we photoshopped an image of the Grinch that read “You’ve been Grinched. Merry F*cking Christmas” for our sign. (We’ve since modified it so the kids could help.) Download your own sign and Grinching instructions at the end of this post.
Then we gathered some cheap, and easy-to-find gifts that our friends would appreciate:
- A 6-pack of beer for him;
- A Starbucks gift card for her; and
- Cookies for the family.
At first glance I’m sure it seemed like a nice surprise – a little something for everybody.
The great Grinchy trick is that each item was actually a complete let-down.
The Starbucks gift card had been mostly used up, so there were only a few cents left to help pay for that Venti Iced Peppermint Mocha Frappuccino.
The six-pack of beer had one empty bottle, and it wasn’t his favorite local craft beer, it was warm, and non-alcoholic O’Doul’s.
And the Christmas cookies? Well, they were burnt to a crisp.
Our friends absolutely LOVED IT! We got a call a few minutes after the drop off. Here was their Instagram post:
The Best Part…
The best part about Grinching your friends is not the initial text or call thanking you for Grinching them. It’s the text three days later after they’ve tried to use the Starbucks giftcard. My response is always “it’s the gift that keeps on disappointing!”
But, it’s one they’ll definitely remember.
Because, let’s be honest, we all like being boo’ed. A Christmas card from Shutterfly or a plate of cookies is nice, but knowing that someone went through a bit of effort on your behalf just feels good!
I think that’s what I love about the Christmas season–connecting with the ones you love. And there’s no better way to make a connection with someone than through a shared experience. My favorite Grinch quote really sums it up nicely:
“Maybe Christmas…doesn’t come from a store.
Maybe Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!”
When Grinching your friends, the real gift you are giving them is the memory, and a story they can tell for years to come!
Want to Grinch your friends this Christmas? You can download the printable “You’ve been Grinched” sign and Grinching instructions for free. Just enter your email below, and I’ll send you the PDFs.
Merry Grinchmas everyone!