“Brown paper packages tied up with string, these are a few of my favorite things,” I remember as a child singing the song “My Favorite Things” from The Sound of Music as I twirled around our yard. Often this happened when I was hanging the laundry out to dry. My mother never scolded me, so I can only assume she approved of mixing joy with my work.

I liked to imagine what might be in those brown paper packages.

This memory popped into my head as I reflected on the adventures I had mailing Christmas packages. One such experience was sending a parcel to Ireland. I learned that living in Maine has its shipping limitations, but after several inquiries, and comparison of options, ultimately, my package went by mail and was received with great joy.

When you see packages at the post office or watch the delivery of a brown paper box, do you ever wonder what it might contain?

Do you ever wonder if perhaps some sweet treat is going to make someone’s day brighter?

Did the sender imagine as do I, the person opening their surprise and sighing in delight to know they were thought of?


After Christmas dinner, our sweet friend, who is in her 80’s, shared her memories of Velatis, an old-fashioned candy maker in Maryland. She told us in detail about Velatis’ sugary confections. She wistfully commented that it probably is no longer available. As she spoke, my son pulled out his phone, did some quick research, and ordered her a surprise box of the Velatis sugary, chewy marshmallow caramels she was remembering. And yes, it arrived in a brown paper box.

I mail loaves of bread, cookies, and candies to family and friends. If you were to send something special, what would it be? Would you make it, or order online or from a local baker?

I googled “brown paper packages” and found leafcutterdesigns.com. They design tiny, personalized packages in tiny brown boxes. In each is a tiny letter, book, or chocolate. One reviewer proclaimed, “…it can’t help bring anything but joy to someone.”  This seems to be proof that I’m not the only one who enjoys surprises in brown paper packages!

How about you? Do you enjoy getting fun surprise packages?