Sunday, December 06, 2009

The Party Pots Box

Most families have holiday traditions. Things like caroling to the neighbors, making goody plates, playing Secret Santa, or helping at a soup kitchen. Last year I introduced you to one Younce Christmas tradition, the Horsehead Dirk. Now it's time to tell about the Party Pots.

I'll do my best to explain. The crawl space under the stairs in my parents' house is called The Box Place because that's where empty boxes of all sizes are tossed. Then at Christmas time we would all rummage around in there for boxes to wrap our gifts in. One year, maybe around the late 80's, someone found The Party Pots Box. My mom had gotten the Party Pots at a white elephant party once and promptly left the box - with the pots inside - in the Box Place.

The Party Pots was a set of clear glass dishes shaped to look like flower pots. One was large and had a metal ring that went around the top. A smaller pot hung on that ring, to create a chip-and-dip scenario for all your party needs. The box had pictures on all four sides, in 70's colors and film quality, of different ways you could use the pots. For example, potato chips and onion dip. Shrimp and cocktail sauce. Triscuits and some freaky dip with red dots in it. And of course you could always put flowers in them.

The box was super colorful, the pictures and really the whole idea ridiculous. But it was a great size and shape for wrapping all kinds of things in. So it got used over and over and over, year after year, and became a running joke and eventually a tradition. It was like winning a prize if you unwrapped a gift in it -

"Yay! The Party Pots!" everyone would exclaim. And that's how traditions get started.

After awhile the poor box - it was kind of flimsy - had been taped nearly to death and when we all moved away from home it fell out if circulation. As I wrote this post it was just killing me that I didn't have a picture, or closure, so I called my mom to see if she still had the box. Not only did she, but she knew exactly where it was. The next time I was over there, I took a picture.

I give you...the Party Pots box!

11 comments:

Carol Younce said...

Since we also opened presents one a night for several weeks before Christmas, this box got reused many times each year. I am guessing it won't be a tradition many families feel the need to take on but it was fun to be us.

Maren said...

Speaking of "fun to be us", I always thought the original gift had come from Grandma. Some years it was like a quest to see how many times we could reuse it in one season. It looks as good as I remember it.

esodhiambo said...

The big question is: what did you do with the actual party pots?

Donna DeSoto said...

This is so funny, Kari. Mostly because in my family we have the same tradition but to a much smaller scale, we use an old Tabasco box!!! It gets passed around just about every year. On occasion it will disappear for a year or two or three, then, just when we think it is gone for good, it miraculously reappears. It is great fun!!! My sister and I used to pass a can containing baba au rum back and forth. Finally, the rum cake must have been at least 20 years past the expiration date, but the can exploded!!!

Carol Younce said...

ESO: The party pots were used as holders for various things on our tables at the Quilt Shows when we were quilt product vendors. Then I got rid of them to a thrift shop where they wait for you to discover them. They were too small to use for the chips and dips and we needed the box more than the pots. That's my story and I'm stickin' to it. Donna, I love the pass-it-around-from year to year thing. One family I know passes around the ugly tie- it gets used as a ribbon on a package, etc.

esodhiambo said...

Sister Younce: I am hereby reserving an entire day to thrift shop on my next DC visit!

The kids (but really the moms) are passing a horrid tweetie-bird snowsuit back and forth. I got it at a baby shower and we gift it around to the newest babies. Unfortunately for Amy, her older kids fail to see the irony in the gift and are really looking forward to putting the newest baby in that suit all winter long. Ha!

Therese said...

loved this post. xo

Heather M. said...

OK, that is the BEST story! LOVE this tradition. It's the silly things like this that you always remember, and have the most fun with!

The LDSMommy said...

In our family, it was a Frederick's of Hollywood box. I'm not exactly sure how we even came to have the box - I'm certain that I don't want to know what originally came in it! - but for years, it would show up. I wonder if it is still kicking around. We'll all be at my parents' for Christmas this year - maybe it will make an appearance!

Carol Younce said...

Emily: have I got a thrift shop for you. You will need that entire day, but not much $$$. Keep in touch. CLY

Donna DeSoto said...

Hey Carol, I want to come!!!!

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