Host A Merry

,
Memorable
Holiday Party
~ ~ ~
Keep Gift Receipts
Organized
~ ~ ~
Survive The
Parking Lot
This Holiday Season
Special Supplement To The Buyers Guide
December 2011
View This
Section
Online
go to: www.yourbg.com
BUYERS GUIDE 2 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
TABLE OF CONTENTS
04 | Gifts for AUTO AFFICIONADOS
05 | STUFF THEIR STOCKINGS with Solutions for Their Sleigh
06 | GIFT CARDS not always the best option
07 | ONLINE SHOPPING means figuring out on-time shipping
08 | SURVIVE the parking lot this holiday season
10 | GIFT IDEAS for the family sports fan
11 | Gifts to make foodies say, “Mmmmm”
12 | GIFT IDEAS for the “Home Care Specialists”
13 | These gifts are music to MUSIC LOVERS’ ears
14 | E-CARDS an alternative not replacement to paper
Christmas greetings
15 | PUT SOME ‘GREEN’ in holiday plans
15 | ORIGINS of a holiday staple
16 | 8 WAYS to create new holiday traditions
17 | Throw a successful OFFICE PARTY
19 | Host a merry, memorable HOLIDAY PARTY
20 | Some DOS and DON’TS of holiday travel
20 | How to accommodate OVERNIGHT HOLIDAY GUESTS
21 | PREVENT HOME BREAK-INS any time of the year
22 | Keep GIFT RECEIPTS organized
23 | What to do with all those HOLIDAY LEFTOVERS
CANDLELIGHT
REMEMBRANCE SERVICE
HEDGESVILLE HIGH SCHOOL BAND HEDGESVILLE HIGH SCHOOL BAND HEDGESVILLE HIGH SCHOOL BAND
and and and
ROSEDALE FUNERAL HOME & CEMETERY ROSEDALE FUNERAL HOME & CEMETERY ROSEDALE FUNERAL HOME & CEMETERY
Invite you to join your neighbors, family and friends for our Invite you to join your neighbors, family and friends for our
Sixth Annual Christmas Luminary Service Saturday, December 10, 2011 Sixth Annual Christmas Luminary Service Saturday, December 10, 2011
at 5:30 P.M. (Rain date: Saturday, Dec 17, 2011) at 5:30 P.M. (Rain date: Saturday, Dec 17, 2011)
Several thousand candles will be placed throughout the
Cemetery at all entrances, features and drives.
The candles will be lit at dusk and the Hedgesville High School
Band will bring us the sounds of the season as we all enjoy their
performances of delightful Christmas Carols.
All are invited to witness the beautiful transformation of our
Cemetery into a warm and glowing tribute to those who cannot
be with us, and to those who are serving in our military.
Schedule of Events
3:30pm Hedgesville High School Band will begin
Lighting of the candles
5:30pm Opening Ceremonies & Welcome
(in front of the funeral home)
by a local Clergy
6:00pm-6:45pm Hedgesville High School Band
will perform Carols
Please join us as we gather in remembrance of our loved
ones, and to celebrate this Christmas Season
Host A Merry,
Memorable
Holiday Party
~ ~ ~
Keep Gift Receipts
Organized
~ ~ ~
Survive The
Parking Lot
This Holiday Season
Special Supplement To The Buyers Guide
December 2011
View This
Section
Online
go to: www.yourbg.com
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3 BUYERS GUIDE HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
As global economic woes continue,
holiday spending remains difficult to
predict. In 2010, holiday spending
rose more than five percent from
the year before, according to
MasterCard AdvisorsTM
SpendingPulseTM. That increase
surprised forecasters, many of
whom predicted holiday spending
would decline for the fifth straight
year.
With the holiday season on the
horizon once again, no one truly
knows what consumer response
will be. But many consumers figure
to exercise some restraint this
holiday season, sticking to a budget
when buying gifts for family and
friends. While budgets are good
ways to limit spending, a holiday
spending budget doesn’t mean
shoppers can’t still put a smile on
their loved ones’ faces. In fact, with
a few tips, holiday shoppers can
stick to their budgets and still enjoy
a happy holiday season.
* GET CREATIVE. Holiday gifts
don’t have to be bought at the local
mall or from an online retailer. Gift-
givers with unique talents can
create their own gifts and save
some money along the way. For
example, shoppers skilled at
woodworking can create a
personalized wood carving for a
friend or family member. Good at
knitting? Knit a scarf, mittens or
even a blanket for a loved one who
lives in a cold weather region. Such
personalized gifts are often
especially meaningful to their
recipients, who appreciate the time
and effort such keepsakes take to
create.
* BE PATIENT. Nowadays, many
families are so spread out
geographically that they don’t
always get together on Christmas
Day. If that’s the case and you won’t
be seeing your family until a few
days after Christmas, take
advantage of the special sales
offered in the days after the actual
holiday. Items are often heavily
discounted, and if you can stay
patient, your patience might just
pay off with substantial savings.
* ESTABLISH SPENDING RULES
with family members before the
shopping season begins. In an
effort to reduce some of the
financial burden of the holiday
season, many families have begun
to place spending limits on holiday
shopping. This saves everyone
money and ensures no one finds
themselves with substantial debt
come the new year.
* Do a gift exchange with family
and friends. Many larger families
have also begun to do a gift
exchange rather than asking
members of the family to buy gifts
for each and every member of the
family.
Giving on a tight budget
Gifts for
auto afficionados
Few passions are as strong as the passion a car lover
has for automobiles. Auto afficionados are often
walking encyclopedias about all things automotive.
When it comes to the holiday season, buying a gift for
the car guy or gal in your family might seem easy.
After all, any gift related to cars is sure to leave your
loved one head over heels.
However, for those holiday shoppers who don’t know
the difference between an air filter and an air
conditioner, perhaps the following suggestions might
fare better under the tree this holiday season.
Driving lessons
Auto racing is one of North America’s most popular
sports, and many car guys and gals would love to
know what it feels like to get behind the wheel of a
race car and put the pedal to the metal. That dream
can become a reality, and holiday shoppers can help
make that happen for a loved one. Racing schools
exist for all sorts of racing, be it stock car racing,
Formula 1 racing, Indy Cars, and even Kart racing.
(Note: Kart racing does not refer to amusement park
style go-karts.) Be it novice car afficionados or
veterans who spend weekends at work in their
garages, racing lessons can make an ideal gift for
auto lovers.
Gift certificate for a wash and a detailing
As much as car guys and gals care about what’s
under the hood, they also care about how their cars’
exteriors looks. Winter weather can wreak havoc on a
vehicle’s exterior, so help your favorite auto lover take
care of his or her baby this winter with a gift certificate
to a nearby car wash and/or auto detailing center. This
will ensure the car remains a sight for sore eyes
through the winter. Just be sure to include multiple
trips to the car wash and detailing center, as a car
often needs a few trips each winter to keep up
appearances.
Magazine subscription
Like most industries, the auto industry is constantly
changing. What’s popular today might be obsolete
tomorrow. Help your favorite auto enthusiast stay
abreast of the auto industry’s many innovations and
updates with a subscription to a favorite auto
magazine. Such magazines inspire car lovers to
improve their own vehicles while letting them know the
latest trends in the auto industry.
Accessories
No car lover can do without his or her accessories,
which can range from practical gifts like a new GPS
unit to more specialized items like a paint gun
accessory kit. Shoppers who aren’t very familiar with
cars might not know which accessories to buy. In such
instances, a gift certificate to a nearby auto parts store
should suffice. This guarantees your loved one will get
something for his or her car and eliminate the need to
return the gift if he or she already has it.
Tools
Auto afficionados love working on their vehicles, and
that work can’t be done without the right tools. If
possible, visit his or her garage or shop and peruse
the tool collection. If anything looks especially aged or
ragged, replace it with a newer version. Auto lovers
are often particular about their tools, so if you’re
reticent about buying new ones, take your gift recipient
to the store and let him or her choose a gift or buy a
gift certificate that covers the cost of the tools that look
like they need replacing.
Some new tools might make the
perfect holiday gift for the auto
afficionado in your family.
BUYERS GUIDE 4 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
Stuff Their
Stockings
with Solutions for Their Sleigh
Whether the person on your gift list
loves anything with wheels, has a new
car under the tree or just needs a few
holiday tips to make their “lump of coal”
car shine like a holiday ornament, here
are some easy ideas for stuffing their
stockings.
While some might say St. Paul, Minn.,
where 3M is headquartered, closely
resembles the North Pole, the elves in
the research labs there have been
developing creative new solutions to
help car owners maintain and improve
their vehicles, just in time for winter
weather and holiday giving.
This year, the
automotive elves
recommend:
Paint Restoration System: Winter salt
and sludge can leave your car’s finish
as dull as a burned out holiday bulb. You
can restore that showroom shine with
the Paint Restoration System, a three-
step process that removes swirl marks,
minor scratches and oxidized paint. Add
a buffer/polisher to the gift list, and it’s
the perfect present for
your paint.
Lens Renewal Kit: Dashing through
the snow on a winter’s night isn’t smart
with headlights that aren’t bright. But
with the Lens Renewal Kit, car owners
can make their headlights shine brighter
than Rudolph’s nose and improve their
safety on their holiday travels. It’s a gift
that keeps on giving.
Scratch Removal System: Hauling all
those holiday packages out of the
sleigh can leave scratches on the rear
bumper. No need to worry. The Scratch
Removal System provides an easy step
by step solution for removing these
small scratches faster than holiday
wrapping paper, and leave the car
looking like brand new.
Custom Image Kit: Give your vehicle
its very own present this holiday season
by personalizing it with a custom matte
image. The Custom Image Kit utilizes
abrasive and film technology to apply
your desired “decal” by hand. Plus, you
can remove the graphic if desired and
restore the finish.
For other holiday gift ideas for the
automotive enthusiast on the shopping
list, visit 3M Car Care on Facebook or
www.3MCarCare.com for a full offering
of 3M automotive solutions. The 3M Car
Care product line can be found at
leading automotive aftermarket retailers
and online at www.Shop3M.com.
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99 BUSINESS PARK CIRCLE
BERKELEY SPRG, WV 25411
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0 5 5 0 5 A 1 U C K K 3 0 B 0 A 3 6 1 1 6 3 0 0 -
5 BUYERS GUIDE HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
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186 Talbott Ave. • Mtsbg, WV (off Paynes Ford Road in Pikeside)
304-267-KUTZ
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Handicap Accessible
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- Food & Refreshments Served -
Come Visit These Fine Vendors
For Your Holiday Shopping
~ Handcrafted Jewe lry & Gift Items By Annie
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~ The Martinsburg Civitan Club
White House Ornaments & Fruit Cakes
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Locally Owned and Operated by Terry D. Shepherd
1315 Old Courthouse Sq.
(Next to Food Lion)
Martinsburg, WV
304-596-2500
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Gift Cards
not always the best option
As people gear up to do their
holiday shopping this year, gift
cards figure to remain a popular
choice for gifting. But the hidden
pitfalls of gift cards may make
giving cash or a check a better
bet.
Eight out of 10 people include
gift cards in their holiday
purchases, offers information
from Statistics Canada. About
$65 billion is spent in the U.S.
annually on gift card purchases,
many around the holiday
season. Convenience and ease
of use is what lures many
shoppers to the gift card rack.
Just about every major retailer
out there has its own gift card for
sale, which can make it even
more enticing to pick one up.
Furthermore, many
supermarkets and big box
retailers sell gift cards for other
merchants right at the check-out
line. So if you’re shopping for
supper you can also get a gift
card to a restaurant or home
improvement store.
Despite the convenience of gift
cards and their presumed utility,
financial experts estimate that
about $7 million in gift cards go
unused each year. The Wall
Street Journal has reported that
states are supposed to track
down gift card purchasers and
try to get them their money back
on unclaimed cards. But many
cannot be found because they
paid in cash and that money just
goes to the state as unclaimed
funds/abandoned property,
which sets in after two years of
non use. New York collected $9.6
million in unused gift cards in
2008.
Another thing to note about gift
cards is that some retailers
impose fees on the cards if they
are not used in a timely manner.
Penalties are placed on the card
that reduce the value for a time
period they are not used.
Expiration dates on the gift cards
can render them useless if they
are not used by a particular time
as well.
Another lesser-known problem is
gift cards activated by third-party
retailers, such as those
restaurant cards purchased at
the supermarket. In some
instances, the activation does
not work correctly and the issued
gift card does not have the paid
value when the gift recipient
goes to use it to dine out. Third-
party sellers are often not
responsible for issuing a refund
on malfunctioning gift cards,
even if you have the receipt; you
must call the service line on the
back of the card.
As an alternative to gift cards,
plain old cash or check might be
a more viable option. Gift
recipients are less likely to be lax
in cashing a check or spending
cash — and it can be put to use
for the same purchases as a gift
card. Cash is also a greener
option, as it doesn’t require the
production and use of a plastic
gift card. Should a check go
uncashed, there’s little chance
you spent your money for
naught, as it simply won’t be
deducted from your account and
you can cancel or write-off that
check number.
Individuals who are crafty can
make their own cash or check
holders so that the monetary gift
is presented in a creative way.
Checks are safer than cash if
mailing the gift because cash
can’t be cancelled if it’s lost in
the mail.
Although the lure of gift cards
can be very enticing, they do
have some disadvantages,
including expiration dates, fees
for failing to use the card
promptly, and even lost or buried
cards that are never used. Cold
hard cash never goes out of
style and is seldom overlooked.
BUYERS GUIDE 6 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
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Online shopping
means figuring out on-time shipping
W
hen faced with the prospect of
long lines at the store and hours
driving around finding a parking
spot at the mall, many shoppers turn to
the convenience of their personal
computers or smartphones to shop
online for holiday gifts.
Today the array of businesses who offer
online retail opportunities create
boundless options. It’s possible to find
obscure gift items that are very unique or
even personalized items not readily
available in stores. Online shopping
enables shoppers to price-check almost
immediately, comparing the costs of one
retailer with another. According to
eMarketer estimates, from 2010 to 2015,
nearly 30 million consumers will join the
ranks of online buyers.
Another advantage to shopping online is
the ability to have items shipped directly
to you or to the recipient. However, this
same advantage can also be a detriment
if you do not understand shipping
policies or lag times during the holiday
season. Gifts may not arrive on time if
you don’t plan accordingly.
All shipping policies are different for
online retailers and it pays shoppers to
know their estimated shipping times.
Otherwise items ordered for Christmas
may arrive much later than desired.
Shoppers should also factor in that
shipping companies are often
overwhelmed during the holidays.
Although seasonal staff may be hired to
help meet shipping demands, the fact
remains that delivery dates cannot be
set in stone. One way to secure a firm
delivery date, though, is to pay for it.
Outlets that offer next-day delivery often
charge a premium for overnight shipping,
but it may be worth it if the gift must be
somewhere by a specific date.
Something shoppers can also consider
is the ship-to-store option that some
retailers offer. If a brick-and-mortar store
has an online shopping site, it may
enable shoppers to buy online and then
have the merchandise delivered to the
store. Some stores have same-day pick-
up option for items that are in stock. Not
only does this ensure that items will be
available on time, in many cases you can
save on shipping costs. The retailers do
not charge shipping fees if the items are
delivered directly to the store.
When visiting a favorite online retailer,
check to see if this option is available.
Wal-Mart is one company ramping up
ship-to-store efforts. It is sometimes
offered as an option during the check-out
portion of the sale. Stores that have the
ship-to-store ability may also allow
returns to be made at the store instead
of having to ship back returns to a
customer service department. Keep in
mind that this type of shipping is not
entirely customer-friendly. Retailers
realize that once a shopper is in a store
to pick up an item, he or she is more
likely to do more shopping or make
impulse purchases.
There are some shoppers who simply
refuse to pay more for expedited
shipping, even if that refusal means their
gift will not arrive on time. Gift recipients
are often forgiving of items that are in
transit. A way around this is to offer a
printed image of the gift inside of a gift
bag to indicate your giving intention.
Therefore, the surprise of the gift will still
be there, but the actual item will arrive
shortly thereafter.
Online shopping remains a convenient
option for many shoppers during the
holidays and year-round. Factoring in
shipping times, which could take a week
or more if standard options apply, will
help you time when to make purchases
so they arrive on time.
7 BUYERS GUIDE HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
Survive the
parking lot
this holiday
season
Holiday shopping can quickly
devolve into mayhem when there
are too many aggressive drivers
competing for spots in the lot.
T
he holiday season
has its share of highs
and lows. Battling for
a spot in the store
parking lot could be as low
as it gets. Oftentimes
shoppers dread buying their
presents not for the crowds
inside, but for the chaos
outside in the parking lot.
Parking lot accidents and
violence are nothing new,
but things can escalate
during the holiday season. In
2010, an employee in the
Lehigh Valley Mall going
home on his 30-minute
lunch break killed a New
Jersey woman when he
crashed his car into her. The
employee was said to be
speeding. Shoppers often
back into carts or even
people in crowded lots.
Fighting over limited spaces
sometimes causes people to
park illegally or get into
confrontations with other
shoppers who made it to the
same spot first.
The spirt of the season can
bring out the best and the
worst in people. Stress and
a strict deadline for shopping
can cause tempers to flare
and road rage to ensue in
the small areas of mall
parking lots. But there are
ways to avoid some of the
pitfalls of parking if you
follow some guidelines.
Shop during off-peak
hours. The weekends, lunch
time and weeknights tend to
be the busiest shopping times
at area malls and stores.
Choose to shop when the
store first opens or in
between lunch and when
work lets out at 5 p.m.
Crowds will be much thinner,
and there will be more
parking spots available. If
possible, take a day off of
work to do the bulk of your
holiday shopping early in the
morning.
Carpool. Get together with a
few friends and drive to the
store in the same car. The
more people who do this, the
fewer cars on the road and in
the lot.
Take the first spot you see.
Some shoppers drive around
endlessly trying to find that
magical spot right near the
store entrance. Instead, take
the first spot you can find
even if it’s on the far side of
the lot. This way you park
quickly and your stress levels
stay low. If you will be leaving
the store after dark, ask a
security guard to escort you
to your car if you feel
uncomfortable walking so far
alone.
Take your baby along. While
this advice may seem
counterintuitive to reducing
stress, it can actually work to
your advantage. Some stores
now offer courtesy parking for
parents with infants or
toddlers in tow. Bringing baby
with you could help you land
a spot a stone’s throw from
the entrance.
Bring Grandma or Grandpa
shopping. Along the same
vein as shopping with baby,
having an elderly person with
you in a car with handicapped
placards could entitle you to a
reserved handicapped space.
However, don’t make the
experience simply about
getting a reserved spot. Use it
to help the person shop or
spend time with an elderly or
disabled friend or family
member. Keep the spirit of
the season in mind.
Shop at local, smaller
stores. While everyone is at
the mall stressing over lines
and parking spaces, you can
visit small specialty shops.
Chances are they will have
no crowds, and the parking
may be easier. Plus, you can
find unique gifts that are not
the cookie-cutter items at the
mall or big-box store.
Take the bus. If mass transit
is available in your area, use
it to your advantage. Some
bus companies offer shuttle
services between city hubs
and malls or outlet centers.
Leave the car at home and
shop at your leisure. Just be
sure to know the schedule of
the last departing bus.
Keep purchases out of
sight. Another hassle of
parking lots is the break-ins.
What’s out of sight is often
out of mind. Therefore, don’t
leave packages or bags in
plain sight in the car. Keep
them in a locked trunk or
hidden in the cargo area of
the SUV for safety.
Store parking lots can be a
challenge that adds stress to
holiday shopping. Use tips to
avoid crowds and extra
aggravation.
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BUYERS GUIDE 8 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
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9 BUYERS GUIDE HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
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Sports fans are a unique breed of
people who range from avid devotees to
casual observers. Come the holiday
season, perhaps no gift is more
appropriate for a sports fan than
something that makes the big game that
much better. This holiday season,
shoppers searching for the right gift for
their sports-crazed love ones might
consider the following gift ideas.
Take tailgating to new heights
Though the games themselves are
important, sports fans will admit the
camaraderie they feel with their fellow
fans is a big part of their love of sports.
And nowhere makes a better place to
build those bonds with fellow fans than
the pregame tailgate. This holiday
season, make that tailgate even more
enjoyable for your favorite sports fan
with a new grill or deep fryer. Deep
fryers come in many shapes and sizes,
be it ones best suited to side dishes and
smaller meals, or larger fryers that
enable tailgaters to cook up some fried
chicken or even a popular staple like
deep fried turkey the whole parking lot
can enjoy.
For those who tailgate and have all the
tools and gadgets they need, don’t
overlook food for your favorite tailgater.
A box of gourmet steaks can go a long
way on a cold afternoon before the big
game, and any veteran tailgater knows
there’s no such thing as too much food.
Tickets to the big game
For those sports nuts routinely
relegated to the couch during their
favorite team’s games, perhaps no gift is
more appropriate than tickets to a
sports arena. Even if money is tight and
tickets seem costly, shoppers can take
advantage of a host of ways to
purchase tickets at below-market costs.
For example, many professional teams
now allow their season ticket holders to
sell their tickets to games right through
the team’s Web site. Tickets might be
discounted as ticket holders attempt to
recoup some of their money for games
they simply can’t attend.
Another option when looking for
affordable tickets is to peruse the
Internet for Web sites like
www.StubHub.com, where ticket
seekers can often find discounted
tickets to some of their favorite sporting
events. In addition, peruse the local
newspaper classifieds to see if anyone
in your area is selling tickets. It’s often
not as difficult as it might seem to find
discounted tickets to even the most
popular sporting events.
Get personal
Sports apparel has never been more
popular, and no true fan can do without
some gear that professes his or her love
for a favorite team. This holiday season
go the extra mile by personalizing a
jersey for the sports
fan in your life. His or her first or last
name embroidered across the back
of a favorite team’s jersey is the ultimate
way for sports fans to show
just how connected they are to their
favorite team.
For those who want to go even further,
contact a loved one’s favorite team to
see if there’s any way to make the
connection even more personal. For
example, some teams sell bricks on
walkways outside their home stadium
and fans can engrave a personal
message on the bricks, forever
connecting them with their favorite
teams.
Bring it home
Nowadays, many sports fans find
themselves living far away from their
favorite teams. New York natives living
in California might have no way to watch
their favorite Big Apple teams do battle
and might be relegated to reading about
their favorite players’ exploits in the
morning newspaper. For shoppers who
truly want to please their favorite sports
fans this holiday season, consider
purchasing them a subscription
package that enables them to see their
favorite team play regardless of where
they live. MLB Extra Innings® and NFL
Sunday Ticket
TM
are just two of the more
popular options that allow sports fans
to see every game their favorite sport
has to offer.
This holiday season, make your favorite
sports fan that much more enthusiastic
with a gift that further strengthens his or
her bond with a favorite team.
Gift Ideas
FOR THE FAMILY
SPORTS FAN
BUYERS GUIDE 10 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
Cooking is a rewarding hobby and meals,
when shared with friends and family, are
a great opportunity to sit down and stay
abreast of all the goings-on in the lives of
your loved ones. For some, however, food
is more than just a hobby, it’s a passion.
Those especially passionate about their
food are affectionately known as
“foodies.” Foodies can be meat lovers,
vegetarians or even vegans. All it really
takes is a love of food. This holiday
season, gift the foodie in your life with
any of the following food-oriented gift
ideas.
Cooking class
Know a foodie who is just beginning a
love affair with food? Or one who has
recently discovered a particular type of
cuisine, such as Thai or Indian? Help
cultivate this newfound love by treating
them to a cooking class that helps them
learn all about the cuisine and how to
make certain dishes for themselves.
Such classes are not too difficult to find,
and you might even be treated to a
delicious, homecooked meal once your
loved one has completed the class.
Club membership
Monthly clubs, such as pastry-of-the-
month or coffee-of-the-month, are wildly
popular among foodies. Memberships are
relatively inexpensive, and each month
your loved one will receive a new item,
whether it’s an old favorite or a new one
they have never tried before. This is a
great way for foodies to try new things,
and it truly is the gift that keeps on giving,
as most memberships last a full year.
Gadgets
Not all foodies love to cook, but those
who do may love to unwrap some
gadgets that can help around the kitchen.
A digital kitchen scale makes measuring
ingredients a snap, while an electric wine
opener makes it easier than ever before
to uncork a bottle of wine to serve with
dinner. Whatever a foodie’s taste or
personal preference, chances are there’s
a corresponding gadget that can make a
meal that much easier to prepare.
A night out
Of course, some foodies love to eat but
aren’t so enamored with cooking. For
those who prefer the restaurant route,
peruse the local Sunday newspaper to
learn about the newest culinary hotspots.
Then purchase a gift certificate for two so
your loved one can indulge his or her love
of food without having to worry about
who’s washing the dishes.
Get your hands dirty
Perhaps nothing will delight a foodie
more than a homecooked meal,
especially after the hectic holiday season
when most people want nothing more
than to kick their heels up and spend a
night in. Once the holiday season has
come and gone, invite your favorite
foodie over for a homecooked meal of his
or her choosing. Unless he or she insists,
don’t let the night’s guest of honor do any
of the work.
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Gifts to make
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11 BUYERS GUIDE HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
“mmmmm”
Give your friends
and family
members who
handle home
improvement and
maintenance
projects gifts to help
them work
efficiently,
successfully and
safely. Woodcraft
offers the following
holiday gift
suggestions.
The Vika Twofold offers
a convenient scaffold
(21.7" high) for above
the ground work and a
handy 47.6" long,
18.7" deep, 31.8" high
workbench for other
tasks — all with a
simple rotation and
extension of the legs.
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2330 Winchester Ave.
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304-263-6957
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Gift Ideas for the
“Home Care Specialists”
Tools With Clout
Whether repairing a cabinet door, mounting a
picture, building or installing cabinets, or
remodeling an entire room, DIYers will likely be
drilling, driving, cutting, and possibly joining
wood. A Festool CXS Lithium-Ion 10.8V
Cordless Drill Multi-Chuck Set can handle all
these drilling and driving challenges, from
maneuvering in tight spaces to installing
cabinets. A belt clip keeps the lightweight (2 lb.)
drill/driver handy, and an ultra-bright LED light
illuminates dark corners. The Rockwell
BladeRunner is a multipurpose, precision cutter
that uses any T-shank jigsaw blade and can
easily cut wood, metal, ceramic tile, aluminum,
and plastic. Operate it attached to the wall or on
a benchtop. Put wood together effortlessly with
the Kreg Jig Jr., a complete kit for pocket-hole
joinery. Nine depth settings make it easy to join
materials from
1
⁄2" to 1
1
⁄2" thick in
1
⁄8" increments.
The WoodRiver Low Angle Block Plane with
Adjustable Mouth is perfect for finessing trim
(miters and back bevels, for example) and for
use anywhere you need to remove a controlled
amount of material (trim, molding, doors, shims,
etc.). For building projects, the 12" Pinnacle
Combination Square includes a blade, square
head and center finder — all the tools needed
for virtually any layout.
Work Area Helpers
The portable Vika Twofold Workbench and
Scaffold quickly turns into a 47.6" long, 18.7"
deep, 31.8" high bench or a 21.7" high scaffold,
depending on how the legs are positioned after
unfolding. The bench features a tool tray, drilling
hole, protractor and ruler inscribed into the
MDF work surface. Both bench and scaffold
have a 500-lb. capacity. LED (80 and 60)
Magnifying Lamps and Bessey Auto-Adjust
Toggle Clamps (horizontal low and high and
inline) are handy helpers for the workbench
projects. Each lamp has a spring-balanced arm
for variable positioning of the head and can be
clamped to a workbench or tabletop. The toggle
clamps eliminate time-consuming manual
adjustment to correct clamping force by
automatically adjusting to variations in
workpiece dimensions, all the while maintaining
constant clamping force with a maximum
vertical opening distance of 2". The 16" Versa
Spin 360, when used with Painter’s Pyramids
and Grabbers, is a versatile support (25 lb.
capacity) that allows the user to securely and
effortlessly rotate projects for sanding, light
machining, painting and crafts for better results
in less time.
Storage, Safety & Stocking Stuffers
ToughBuilt Mega, Project, Universal, Utility and
Tape Measure Pouches range from very large to
small and provide temporary storage for tools in
the interior pockets. Each can be easily attached
to a belt if desired. For personal comfort and
safety, give your workers a Woodcraft 22-Pocket
Apron, FastCap MXV-Pocket Dust Masks (N95
rating), and YGC General Utility Gloves
(medium to extra large). Stocking stuffer ideas:
WERA Kraftform Kompakt 26 7-in-1 Bayonet
Screwdriver that conceals six driver bits in the
handle and can be used with cordless drill
drivers via a quick release locking chuck and
spinner stored in the shaft, a Snappy 5-Piece
Countersinking Drill Set, a Cutting Board Kit
(milled domestic and exotic hardwood pieces), a
Woodcraft Magazine subscription and a
Woodcraft Gift Card.
To learn more about these products and others,
visit your local Woodcraft store, call
(800) 535-4482 or visit www.woodcraft.com.
BUYERS GUIDE 12 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
Taste in music is a topic of eternal
debate. Whether a person’s interests lean
toward the Beatles or the Beastie Boys,
there’s no denying most people love
listening to music. Music can lift our
moods and help us through difficult times,
and it can also make the good times that
much more enjoyable.
Come the holiday season, many people
look to music when
gifting friends
and family.
Though it’s
wise to
avoid
getting too specific with a musical gift for
fear of offending personal taste, there are
more general gifts shoppers can give that
are sure to please.
Gift certificate to an online music
store: Most of today’s music fans
purchase their music digitally via a
handful of online music retailers, be it
iTunes, Amazon, etc. Find out which
digital music retailer your loved one
prefers and purchase a gift certificate to
that retailer. This ensures loved ones will
get the music they like, and all but
guarantees the gift won’t be returned.
Protective headphones: The popularity
of digital music has increased the
popularity of personal digital music
players that are often listened to via
headphones. One significant
disadvantage to such players is the
longterm side effects they can have on
hearing. Over time, if music lovers spend
lots of time listening to players with
poorly designed headphones,
they can do substantial and
possibly irreparable
damage to their ears.
Protect your loved
one’s hearing
with
headphones that promise great sound
quality without putting a person’s hearing
at risk. Protective headphones can
reduce the risk of hearing loss and often
provide superior sound quality than the
headphones that come standard with
some of the most popular digital music
players.
Music lessons: Younger music fans
might want to try their hand at a favorite
musical instrument or join a choir. For
such youngsters, music lessons might be
the ideal gift to encourage a hobby that’s
both healthy and educational. Those
considering such lessons for nieces or
nephews should consult the youngster’s
parents first, as Mom and Dad will
ultimately have to deal with the
consequences of having a young rocker
around the house. For especially young
kids, consider musical toys that are fun
and educational.
Concert tickets: Music lovers almost
universally agree seeing a favorite band
or performer live in concert is even better
than listening in the car or at home. This
holiday season, consider going the extra
mile and buying a loved one concert
tickets to see a favorite performer. When
doing so, include a little extra money so
they can purchase a T-shirt to
commemorate the night.
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berkeley@mtoclean.com • www.mtoclean.com
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13 BUYERS GUIDE HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
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E-cards an alternative,
not replacement to paper
Christmas greetings
Estimates say that 2.65
billion Christmas cards
are sold in the United
States each year. That’s
enough paper to fill a football
field 10 stories high. Most of
these cards end up in a trash
can come the end of the year,
which contributes to the millions
of pounds of extra trash
generated during the holidays.
As an alternative, many
environmentally conscious, or
just cost-conscious, people turn
to e-cards.
E-cards are digital cards either
sent through e-mail or an online
card service. Many e-cards are
available at no cost if you know
where to look. Other retailers
offer e-cards at a minimal cost,
or some enable shoppers to
subscribe to a monthly service
for a low price.
Although many people use e-
cards because they’re free,
convenient and eco-friendly, it’s
unlikely that e-cards will replace
paper Christmas cards entirely.
That’s because the tradition and
the sentiment of sending
greetings through the mail has
been in place for centuries.
Those who send out e-cards
can establish a list of recipients
by compiling the most current e-
mail addresses of friends and
family. Individual e-greetings are
more personal. However, some
people choose to post one
universal greeting online
through a social networking site,
like Facebook.
Although e-cards can be sent
immediately, that doesn’t mean
you should wait until the last
minute to send them. Let the
person enjoy the sentiments for
a few weeks, just as you would
with a paper card.
Add a few personalized
sentiments to the greeting so it’s
not just a bland, mass e-mailed
sentiment.
Consider designing your own
greeting card as another option.
Use either design or word-
processing software to create a
card and then save it as a PDF
file, which can be opened with a
program like Acrobat® Reader.
It can then be e-mailed as an
attachment.
BUYERS GUIDE 14 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
With the holiday season on the horizon,
many people’s thoughts turn to charitable
giving and other altruistic efforts. Amid
giving a helping hand to those who need it
and donating to worthy charities, individuals
can think about giving back to the planet as
well.
Many people equate the holiday season
with trying to do more or give more. While
these efforts are well-intentioned, the
“bigger is better” mantra often turns into a
season of excess. From thousands of
twinkling lights adorning homes to pounds
of wrapping paper used on gifts, the toll the
holiday season takes on the environment is
substantial.
The Clean Air Council estimates that an
additional 5 million tons of waste is
generated during the holidays in the U.S.,
and 4 million tons of this is wrapping paper
and shopping bags. Incandescent twinkle
bulbs consume considerable power,
especially when every house in the
neighborhood is lit up. Extra food is often
purchased to make holiday meals lavish,
and plastic or disposable dishes and
utensils is commonly chosen for
convenience. All of this adds up to
considerable excess.
There are several ways to reduce the
impact the holidays have on the
environment. Making smart choices and
being conscious of when you could be
adopting the “bigger is better” philosophy
could help.
• Switch holiday lights to LED ones. LEDs
use 80 to 90 percent less energy than
incandescent bulbs. Plus they are
supposed to last longer before burnout.
Although their initial cost is higher than
standard bulbs, energy savings and longer
lifespan mitigate these initial costs.
• Place lights on a timer so that the light
display turns off overnight. If you don’t have
a timer, simply turn the lights off when
going to bed.
• Buy items with less packaging to reduce
waste. If you plan to purchase the same
items as other friends and family (i.e.
adhesive tape or tissue paper), think about
buying one bulk package and splitting the
contents.
• Reduce reliance on wrapping paper. Many
people now forgo wrapping paper for gift
bags because they are easily portable and
can be used over and over. If you select
wrapping paper, choose types that can be
recycled and papers that are already made
of recycled materials. You can also use
unique materials for wrapping items, such
as cloth with ribbon or handkerchiefs.
• Trim the tree with handmade items.
Stringing popcorn and berries to make a
homemade garland is a much greener
option than plastic tinsel. Use pine cones
collected at the end of autumn and
decorate with acrylic paints and hang with
ribbon. To add to a Christmas decoration
collection, shop at thrift stores or tag sales
to find gently used decorations that are new
to you.
• For those who want a real Christmas tree
this year, buy one with the root ball intact.
Then plant the pine tree in the yard after
the holidays are over.
• Choose locally grown or organic food for
holiday feasts. These foods might be more
fresh, and you will know they were raised in
a way that doesn’t compromise the
environment.
• Limit gifts that require batteries. Batteries
routinely end up in landfills and damage the
environment when they are carelessly
discarded. Select toys and gadgets that use
rechargeable batteries or ones that can be
easily recycled later on.
• Reduce reliance on disposable
entertaining items. Skip the plastic cups
and paper napkins. While it may take a little
extra effort to clean up, using china dishes
and stainless flatware reduces waste that
ends up in the garbage. Plus, all of those
plastic and paper products that will end up
in the trash require energy and resources
to make.
This holiday season, when the spirit of
giving reigns supreme, don’t forget to give
back to the planet as well.
Put some
‘green’
in holiday plans
Using recycled wrapping
paper and turning to LED lights
on the tree are green ideas
for the season.
Origins of
a holiday
staple
The thick, spiced drink we know as
eggnog has become synonymous
with the holidays. It is so linked with
the Christmas season that a person
may be hard-pressed to find it sold
in the supermarket any other time
of the year. But eggnog wasn’t
always the holiday beverage it has
become.
Eggnog is believed to have
originated in 17th century Europe,
primarily as a drink for the elite,
since the ingredients in the
beverage were hard to come by
and thusly relegated to the very
rich.
There are different theories on the
origins of the word eggnog itself.
Some believe it has gotten its name
from the Old English word “nog,”
which meant “strong beer.” The
“egg” refers to one of the
ingredients in the beverage, fresh
eggs. Others surmise that it comes
from the word “noggin,” which was
a vessel for serving drinks in
taverns. The drink was called “egg
in a noggin,” which was shortened
to “eggnog.” Still, there are others
who say its name is derived from
the term “grog,” which was another
term for booze. “Egg n’ grog” was
eventually abbreviated to “eggnog.”
Although there is little certainty to
the origins of the name, the recipe
for eggnog has essentially
remained unchanged throughout
the centuries. It consists of beaten
eggs, cream or milk and sugar
mixed with some sort of alcoholic
spirit. The Old English were
believed to mix it with wine, though
once the drink was brought to the
New World, colonists substituted
rum for the wine. Rum was readily
available through tradesman
running between the Americas and
the Caribbean and therefore less
expensive than another spirit. As
America grew and eggnog was
enjoyed in different parts of the
country, the rum was replaced with
regional spirits, including bourbon
or grain alcohol. Other ingredients
were also added to give it a
customized flavor. However, the
use of nutmeg, cinnamon and
cloves has become traditional
flavors for the holiday brew.
Although eggnog is widely enjoyed
throughout the holiday season, in
the past it was served at special
events and social occasions. As a
warmed beverage it can easily
chase away winter’s chill. This is
how it may have come to be
enjoyed primarily during the
holidays.
Love it or hate it, eggnog is a drink
that can evoke strong feelings of
the holidays within minutes. There
are variations of eggnog sold
commercially, but many people
swear by homemade versions for
their taste and authenticity. Try your
own homemade eggnog with this
recipe, courtesy of Cooks.com.
Holiday Eggnog (Spirited)
1 dozen eggs
1 pound powdered sugar
1
⁄2 teaspoon salt
1
⁄4 cup vanilla
8 cups evaporated milk
3 cups water
1 quart spiced rum
Nutmeg, to garnish
Beat eggs until light in color,
gradually add sugar, salt and
vanilla. Then add milk and water.
Stir in rum (brandy, bourbon or rye
may also be used). Cover the nog
and ripen for 24 hours in the
refrigerator. Stir again and serve
sprinkled with nutmeg.
15 BUYERS GUIDE HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
325 W. Boscawen St. • Winchester, VA
540-662-2263 • www.thetotalimage.net
Extended Holiday Hours:
Mon-Sat 9:30-8 • Sun 11-6
Much of what makes the holiday season so special is the
traditions that people hold dear. While families have traditions
that stretch back decades, there is plenty of opportunity to
embrace new means of celebration to breathe new life into
Christmas, Chanukkah or the season’s other holidays.
Chances are you’re already hanging stockings or going
caroling this year.You can add some of these and modify as
they fit for your family.
1. Feed the wildlife. During the cold days of winter, birds and
small animals that don’t hibernate may find it difficult to
forage for food. By trimming an outdoor pine tree in edible
snacks you’ll have a beautiful tree and one that benefits the
wildlife as well. String peanuts and other nuts for the
squirrels. Make little ornaments out of suet and string for the
birds. Berries and corn can be enjoyed by all. Be sure to
choose a tree that is far enough away from the home, so you
don’t have too many scavengers hunting and pecking around
the house.
2. Create a photo Advent calendar. Make your own Advent
calendar that has small doors that open up to photos of
different family members. Or use a collection of children’s
pictures that showcase how they’ve changed as they’ve
grown older.
3. “Adopt” a child for holiday gifts. Each year you can bring a
smile to a child in need by purchasing a present for an
underprivileged kid. Some post offices sponsor “Letters from
Santa” events where participants can respond to one of the
thousands of letters mailed to The North Pole. Or work with a
local charity that organizes events to bring gifts to children in
hospitals or in foster care.
4. Holiday story countdown. Every night in December watch
a movie or read a story that tells an uplifting holiday tale. Use
this as a method of counting down until Christmas. On the
night prior, reading “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas”
should suffice.
5. Remember someone who has passed on. The holiday
season is one made beautiful by lit candles and twinkling
lights. Remember a loved one or a friend who has passed
away by lighting a remembrance candle in his or her honor.
It’s a way this person can still be part of the festivities.
6. Have a holiday sing-a-long. Sure it may be tradition to go
around the neighborhood singing carols, but it’s just as fun
indoors. Have a singing party where guests are given lyrics
to popular tunes they can sing around the piano or karaoke
machine.
7. Bring some joy to a public servant. Police officers,
firefighters, military personnel ... many of these workers do
not get off for the holidays. There are a certain number of
public servants who must remain on call in the event of an
emergency. Treat these people to something enjoyable when
they may be missing their own festivities. Cook or cater a
meal for a fire house, deliver cookies to the police station or
put together care packages for people living on a military
base.
8. Banish the holiday blues. When the holidays are set to go
for another year, many people find they become a little down.
After all, a home that was once filled with merry trinkets may
now go back to the bare essentials. Create a tradition where
everyone in the family receives one more gift — a
personalized ornament that can be packed away for use next
year — that’s given in January before the decorations are
packed away. It’s another opportunity to open a present, and
it symbolizes looking forward to the joy of next year.
8
ways to create new
holiday traditions
Holiday traditions are fun. This year it may
be time to begin some new ones to add
even more enjoyment.
BUYERS GUIDE 16 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
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YOUR OWNER’S MANUAL THOROUGHLY. 1.99% Fixed APR financing
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payments of $28.64 for each $1,000 financed. Offer good on new and
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THE INFLUENCE OF DRUGS OR ALCOHOL, AND NEVER USE THE STREET AS
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THOROUGHLY. 2.99%Fixed APR financing available for customers who qualify
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Recent findings show a trend toward
downsizing the annual holiday office party
due to poor economic times. But this may
be a mistake on the part of employers.
According to a recent CareerThink
readers survey called “What Do YOU
Think,” 84 percent of respondents believe
that a holiday office party is good for
employee morale. Some survey
participants said that they would not miss
an office party, though most agree that’s it
is a good thing to have. Keeping the office
party tradition going is one thing
employers can do to boost employee
morale — which often translates into
better business.
Party planners dusting off their event-
planning skills may need a refresher
course in how to throw a successful (and
appropriate) office party. Here are some
tips to do just that.
• Throw the party off-premises. Most
employees spend 8 to 10 hours a day at
their places of employment. Hosting a
party at the office, factory or place of
business can seem like just an extension
of the regular working day. Instead, plan a
location that’s nearby but won’t seem like
work itself. There are plenty of
restaurants, hotels, catering halls and
even public parks that rent rooms. Just be
sure to book it well in advance because
reservations fill up quickly during the
holidays.
• Invite employees’ spouses and children.
Opening up the invitation to the family
members means employees won’t need
to feel torn about attending the party or
spending time at home. Plus, this is a
good opportunity for spouses and children
to interact.
• Leave little room for shop talk. Plan a
host of activities, from dancing to fun trivia
to more creative ideas (like making
ornaments), so that employees are not
simply left talking about business.
• Treat it like your own party. Employers or
the party planner can greet guests by the
door so they feel immediately warm and
welcomed. Create a mood with inviting
decor and mood lighting that is completely
opposite of the stark fluorescent lights of
the office.
• Remember food often makes the bash.
Instead of cafeteria fare or brown-bag
lunches, treat employees to some
delicious dishes. Work with a caterer to
have a variety of offerings. If money is an
issue, make it a pot luck theme where
everyone gets to bring one dish and then
everyone enjoys it buffet-style.
• Go sparingly on the alcohol. Experts
agree to disagree on the topic of alcoholic
beverages at office functions. While some
say it is perfectly OK, others argue that
alcohol can lead to reduced inhibitions
and thusly embarrassing situations,
including confessing crushes on
coworkers or speaking one’s mind about
the boss. If alcohol is served, hosts
should realize they are responsible for the
safety of employees heading home. Have
transportation ready for those who have
imbibed too much.
• Hire a photographer. Enlist the services
of a professional photographer to capture
the night’s festivities. Then these photos
can be put together in a collage or a
photo book passed out later as a favor.
Hiring an unbiased photographer means
everyone will be photographed and
amateurs simply won’t be snapping shots
of friends.
• Enlist the help of a party planning team.
Let the coworkers decide what type of
event to have. Get feedback from
employees to pick something they will
enjoy.
• Keep it neutral. Although the party may
be taking place during the holiday season,
there’s no need to slant it toward any one
holiday theme. This way everyone feels
included in the festivities, regardless of
religious beliefs.
• Nix the gift-sharing. Many employees do
not want to feel obligated to buy gifts for
coworkers, especially when they’re
strapped for time and funds for gifts for
their own friends and family. However,
employees may like something from the
boss saying that they are appreciated. If
bonuses aren’t in the cards, employers
can consider smaller financial gifts, gift
cards to a restaurant, boxes of chocolate,
or something else that shows
appreciation.
The holidays are a fun time of year to
boost employee morale. Throwing an
office party is still one of the easiest ways
to show workers they are appreciated.
Throw a
successful
office party
Friends, the Advent and Christmas Season is a time for lifting up our voices in
joyous songs of adoration and praise. Please come worship with us at Falling
Waters Presbyterian Church this season and share the warmth of friends, family and Christmas fellows hip. If you
are looking for a friendly church, please consider worshipping with us at Falling Waters Presbyteria n Church this
Advent and Christmas Season. For more information about any of our services or activities, please p hone the
church office at 304-754-8211.
Welcome
Falling Waters
Presbyterian Church
2011 Advent & Christmas
Worship & Activity
Schedule
2928 Hammonds Mill Road • Hedgesville, WV 25427
304-754-8211 • www.fwpc.info
Third Sunday of Advent
December 11 - 9:00am - Church School
10:00am - Morning Worship, Lighting of the Advent Candle, Children’s Christmas Pageant • 11:00am - F ellowship Dinner
December 14th 10:00am - Women’s Bible Study Christmas Brunch
Fourth Sunday of Advent
December 18 - 9:00am - Church School • 10:00am Morning Worship and Lighting of the Advent Candle
11:00am - Fellowship Hour
7:00pm - Christmas Cantata
“Lead Me Back to Bethlehem” • Words and Music by: Pepper Choplin
Presented by: Falling Waters Presbyterian Church Adult Choir Consisting of
Thirty Singers and Accompanists
A Nursery will be provided • Reception to follow.
Christmas Eve - December 24 -11:00pm - Candlelight Christmas Eve Service of Lessons and Carols, Communion
Christmas - December 25 - 11:00 a.m. Morning Worship
17 BUYERS GUIDE HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
311 W. Washington St. Charles Town 304-725-7549
2013 S. Loudoun St. Winchester 540-665-0683
47 Catoctin Cir SE Leesburg 703-443-6888
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Holiday Hours:
Sun., Dec. 18: 10am-2pm • Wed., Dec. 21: 10am-6pm
Sat., Dec 24: 8am-Noon
Dec. 19 - Dec. 20 - Dec. 22 - Dec 23: 10am-6pm
Mon. Tues. Thurs. Fri.
Gift Certificates Available
Holiday
BUYERS GUIDE 18 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
It’s a wrap
GREEN ALTERNATIVES
FOR GIFT PACKAGING
If your holiday halls are decked with
stacks of paper bags, mounds of
crumpled wrapping paper, an array of
random ribbons, and a gaggle of gift
tags that are destined for the local
landfill, it’s time to add a little “green” to
your gift-wrapping regimen.
Given that the average household’s
waste jumps by more than 25 percent
between Thanksgiving and New Year’s
Day and that holiday debris adds an
additional one million tons per week to
landfills, there is a lot that everyone can
do to recycle, reuse and reduce during
the holidays. According to Eco-
Chick.com, “If every family reused just
two feet of holiday ribbon, the 38,000
miles of ribbon saved could tie a bow
around the entire planet. If every
American family wrapped just 3
presents in re-used materials, it would
save enough paper to cover 45,000
football fields. The 2.65 billion Christmas
cards sold each year in the U.S. could fill
a football field 10 stories high. If we
each sent one card less, we’d save
50,000 cubic yards of paper.” Here are
some ways to go green and even save
green on gift packaging this year:
Recycle: Conventional wrapping paper
typically cannot be recycled since it is
often coated in metal foil or is plastic
laminated. But if the paper rips and
doesn’t glitter or shine, it can — and
should — be placed in the recycle bin
along with other paper products. Check
with your local recycling provider to find
out which types of wrapping paper they
accept. The good news is that recyclable
wrapping paper is increasingly available
from both online and brick-and-mortar
retailers such as Amazon.com, Office
Depot and UncommonGoods.com.
Reuse: Before the opening of the gifts
begins, set aside a box for collecting
reusable boxes, wrapping paper, gift
bags, bows, ribbons, and other
decorative items. Even if wrapping paper
is torn, it can be used for craft projects,
packaging filler or to enclose smaller
gifts the following year. Gift bags are
also great candidates for reuse. If the
surface of the bag is marred from
removing ribbon or a bow, the spot can
be covered with other decorative items
or scraps of used wrapping paper.
Reduce: Recycling and reusing boxes,
wrapping paper, ribbon and gift bags is
a big step in the right direction. But the
best way to avoid waste is to reduce the
use of these items in the first place.
Rather than wrapping gifts in paper,
consider using scarves, old tea towels,
cloth napkins, or leftover fabric. If you’re
crafty, consider creating your own
simple fabric sacks that can be easily
sewn by hand or machine. If you’re not,
try painting an old pillowcase and tying it
up with fabric ribbon, string or even
shoelaces.
*Finance offer subject to credit approval, applies to purchases of new Yamaha Motorcycles, ATVs, Scooters & Generators made on a Yamaha Installment Financing loan account from 10/1/11-12/31/11. Minimum
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The holidays are the most festive time of
the year, and no holiday season is
complete without a party or two with
family and friends. Be it to celebrate a
religious holiday or to ring in the New
Year, a holiday party is an essential
element to the holiday season.
While it’s always great to be a guest,
hosting a holiday party is a great way to
show friends and family how much they
mean to you. This holiday season,
consider the following tips to ensure your
holiday party is as memorable as the
season is merry.
Make it a themed party. The holiday
season is filled with festivities, from office
parties to neighborhood gatherings to
gatherings with family. For more casual
affairs, set your party apart with a theme.
For example, a Christmas sweater party,
where each guest wears a Christmas
sweater, can be a fun way to excite
guests and inspire a few laughs. Give a
prize to the guest with the most ornate
sweater. If sweaters aren’t your thing,
then encourage guests to dress up like
some favorite holiday characters,
including Santa Claus, Frosty the
Snowman or even Rudolph.
Don’t forget the holiday fare. Just like
parties are a staple of the holiday
season, so, too, are certain foods and
types of music. Few people indulge in
some eggnog outside of the holiday
season, so make sure there’s plenty of
eggnog on hand. And don’t forget the
gingerbread cookies, either. As people
enjoy holiday goodies, make sure they
do so with holiday music playing in the
background. Choose songs that guests
know and to which they can sing along.
Such sing-alongs might become
especially memorable once guests have
a glass or two of eggnog in them.
Host a holiday giveaway. Though it can
be fun to do a Secret Santa, chances are
guests already have enough gifts to buy.
But hosts can spice things up with a
holiday giveaway that rewards guests.
Host a holiday-themed round of Trivial
Pursuit or a holiday movie trivia game
that encourages guests to compete for
prizes. Prizes can be small and
inexpensive, but guests will be sure to
enjoy some friendly competition for
holiday-themed prizes.
Don’t be afraid to take it outside. For
those who live in regions with significant
snowfall, consider inviting guests outside
to have some fun in the snow. While fun
in the snow is often left to the kids, don’t
assume adults won’t enjoy building some
snowmen or a good old fashioned
snowball fight in the backyard. If outdoor
fun is going to be on the docket, be sure
to remind guests to dress appropriately.
And make sure there’s plenty of hot
chocolate ready once everyone goes
back inside to warm up.
Prearrange transportation home for
guests. A successful holiday party is
one that is safe, so be sure to prearrange
travel home for guests just in case
anyone overindulges in holiday cheer.
When sending out invitations, seek
volunteers to be designated drivers, and
avoid drinking alcohol yourself. For larger
parties, call a local taxi service and
arrange for a couple of cabs to be on call
when the party ends.
Host a merry, memorable
holiday party
19 BUYERS GUIDE HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
Some dos
and don’ts
of holiday
travel
The holidays are a festive time of year, but they
can also prove stressful for the millions of
people who travel to visit friends and family or
use time off during the holidays to go on
vacation. Because so many people travel during
the holidays, airports are crowded more than
usual and the nation’s roadways often
experience heavy traffic, especially on the days
immediately before and after a holiday.
While there’s not much travelers can do to
reduce the number of fellow travelers come the
holiday season, there are certain dos and don’ts
that can make holiday travel much easier.
DO plan ahead. Leaving holiday travel plans
until the last minute is a recipe for disaster.
Some air travelers feel it’s more affordable to
book flights in the weeks leading up to the
holidays rather than months in advance. While
it’s possible to find last minute airline deals, it’s
very possible such deals will put travelers on
standby. That’s potentially disastrous during a
travel season that has frequent flight delays or
cancellations due to inclement weather. Book
travel plans as early as possible to avoid the
hassles of last minute bookings.
DON’T blame airport staff if things go awry.
The holiday season can be stressful for those
who have to travel, but it’s exceedingly stressful
for the men and women who work in the travel
industry. Airline employees, particularly those
who work at ticket counters, are too often
treated poorly by travelers who need someone
to blame for flight delays and cancellations. The
same goes for the people who work at bus or
train stations. Regardless of how inconvenient
interrupted travel plans can be, it’s never the
fault of the person working at the airport. It’s
often a result of inclement weather, which is
something no one can control. Should travel
plans be delayed or cancelled, remain
courteous, compassionate and respectful of
staff. Doing so is the right thing to do, and it
might just garner you some consideration when
the time comes to reschedule plans.
DO insure your trip. As mentioned above,
flight delays and cancellations are common
during the holiday season. Heavy snowfall can
wreak havoc on travel plans, even for those
people who live in relatively temperate
climates. Travelers traveling to or from regions
where heavy snowfall is a possibility should
always protect themselves against flight
cancellations or delays by insuring their trips.
Insurance is often inexpensive, and can protect
travelers if their flight plans go awry. The peace
of mind insurance provides can also reduce the
stress of holiday travel.
DON’T try to make up for lost time. While
there’s little air travelers can do to make up for
lost time, those traveling by automobile often try
to make up for lost time by driving aggressively.
Nothing could be more dangerous, as the roads
are often overcrowded and driving conditions
during the holidays are rarely ideal. Even if a
traffic jam or other delay makes it impossible to
stick to your travel schedule, don’t risk disaster
with aggressive driving. Instead, call your
destination and explain you will be a little late
because of delays on the roadway. No matter
where you are going, be it a hotel or to a friend
or family member’s house, they will understand
the situation and they will certainly prefer you
get there safe and sound, even if that means
getting there a little later than originally planned.
DO be an early bird. The early bird gets the
worm, and when it comes to holiday travel the
early bird can also significantly reduce the
stress of traveling. If traveling by air, get to the
airport extra early. This way you won’t have to
fret when the lines at baggage check or
security checkpoints are long. If traveling via
automobile, get up early and hit the road before
most drivers are even out of bed. It might not
be fun to get up so early, but you will likely start
your trip off with little to no traffic.
DON’T overdo it. It’s tempting to try to see
everyone during the holiday season, but most
travelers would prefer to stay in one place for
more time than to continue traveling from place
to place without spending much time at any
one place. Traveling too much can lead to
exhaustion, which is especially dangerous for
those traveling by automobile. If possible,
spread out holiday travel as much as you can,
and attempt to spend at least two nights
sleeping in the same bed before hitting the
road again.
Holiday travel doesn’t have to be so difficult.
Adhering to a few dos and don’ts can make this
year’s holiday travel far less stressful.
Thousands of people travel far and
wide to visit family and friends for
the holidays. Chances are many
holiday hosts and hostesses will
open their homes to overnight
guests.
Although visions of Cousin Eddy
from “National Lampoons
Christmas Vacation” and his band
of misfit family members come to
mind, most holiday guests are
more of a pleasure to have
around. It might be mildly
inconvenient to host guests for a
day or two, but preparation can
help alleviate such
inconveniences.
There are a number of ways to get
ready for holiday guests. Keep
these tips in mind as you prepare
your home.
Set aside space. Not every
household has a spare guest
room available, but there are ways
to make guests feel like they have
their own private area. There’s the
possibility of giving up your own
room for the night or set up a
space in an out-of-the-way den or
a child’s bedroom for the time
being. People who live in the
house may be more comfortable
bunking with another than an
outside guest.
Offer individual linens. A fresh
set of sheets and towels
contributes to a hotel’s comfort
level. Welcome guests with a set
of fresh sheets and soft towels.
Stock extra toiletries. The
holiday season is a busy time and
it’s easy for travelers to forget a
thing or two. Keep an extra
toothbrush and some spare
mouthwash at the ready. Travel-
sized soaps and shampoos may
be more convenient for guests and
might help them feel more
comfortable and less burdensome
staying in your home.
Accommodate guests’ needs.
Some guests may be allergic to
certain foods, while others may
prefer to watch the late-night news
before bed. Find out their
preferences beforehand so you
can do your best to make them
feel comfortable.
Have laundry services available.
Give guests their own laundry bag
so they can wash clothes if they’ll
be staying for an extended period
of time. Fresh clothes make
anyone feel better.
Invest in an air mattress. Having
extra places for guests to sleep
often comes in handy. Air
mattresses are easy to inflate at a
moment’s notice for an
unexpected guest and can be
quickly deflated and stored in a
closet or under a bed.
Bend house rules. While certain
rules may be set in stone, bed
times or meal times may have to
be changed to accommodate
guests who aren’t used to the
goings-on of the household.
It can be fun or frustrating to have
a guest stay over for the holidays.
But being prepared can make the
time go much more smoothly.
How to accommodate
overnight holiday guests
BUYERS GUIDE 20 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
Arriving early at the airport during the holiday
season is one way to reduce the stress of travel
during one of the busiest travel seasons of the
year.
Prevent home
break-ins any time of the year
The joys of the holidays are
many: Sharing eggnog,
exchanging presents,
trimming the tree,
contacting the police to
report a robbery. The last
one certainly isn’t a joy, but
it’s an all-too common
reality of the season. But
the holidays aren’t the only
times that home break-ins
take place. There’s no
telling what goes through
the minds of thieves, and
preparing for any situation
is the way to avoid loss due
to theft.
In the U.S., a home is
robbed every 14.6 seconds,
and the average dollar loss
per burglary is $2,119,
according to the Federal
Bureau of Investigation.
Statistics Canada offers
that break-ins are not only
the most serious type of
property crime committed
in Canada, but they are
also one of the most
common. In 2009, there were
more than 205,000 break-ins
reported to the police,
accounting for 15 percent of
all property crimes.
Despite burglaries being
down overall in numbers in
both the U.S. and Canada,
homeowners can still be
diligent in their efforts to
prevent break-ins and
property loss. Here are some
strategies for thwarting would-
be thieves.
Break down cardboard
boxes. There’s no better way
to tell thieves about all the
new presents you received
than by advertising them at
the curbside. Burglars will see
that empty television box or
other expensive gadget
boxes put out for pickup and
have a clue about the new
goodies inside the home.
Instead, cut up the boxes and
bundle them with newspapers
so they are inconspicuous.
Lock every door and
window all the time —
including the garage. Many
people fail to realize that the
garage presents a great point
of entry to the house, one
that is private and away from
the eyes of concerned
neighbors. Once inside the
garage, a thief can use tools
in the garage to pick at the
lock on an inside door to the
home.
Forget about hiding keys.
Thieves know about all the
places homeowners hide
spare keys. You’re not fooling
anyone with faux rocks or a
key taped over the door. If
you’re prone to forgetting
your keys, leave a spare pair
with a trusted neighbor
instead.
Don’t advertise your status
on social network sites. You
may be excited to share your
vacation adventures with
friends, but posting pictures
of your vacation or telling
others about when you’re
planning to leave the house
can be dangerous. Even if
you have your security
settings locked down to only
friends, the fewer people who
know about your
whereabouts the better. Your
list of 200 friends may not be
the closest friends anymore.
Trim bushes and fix
lighting. Darkness and
camouflage are a thief’s best
friends. Being able to hide
behind shrubs to jimmy a
window or lock hides him or
her from others who may
witness suspicious activity.
Keeping lights on and shrubbery
trimmed around entryways helps
dissuade burglars from
attempting a break-in.
21 BUYERS GUIDE HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
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A relatively recent component of holiday
shopping — or any shopping for that
matter — is the gift receipt. Keeping gift
receipts organized can take a little effort
on the part of the shopper to ensure
each gift recipient is in possession of
their respective receipts.
Gift receipts are advantageous to people
who are receiving presents. Should the
item not fit or be a duplicate of
something they already have, a gift
receipt enables them to return the item
effortlessly. It also clearly indicates
where the gift was purchased so one is
not driving around trying to find the store
for a return. Plus, should the item have
been recently reduced in price, a gift
receipt will allow the full value of the gift
to be received.
Returning an item without a receipt
could result in lost value and the sale
price being rescinded. Although having
a gift receipt will not entitle one to a
cash refund, it will equate to a store
credit in the amount of the original price
purchased.
Keeping gift receipts organized may take
a little trial and error. One idea is to keep
two envelopes and a pen handy when
shopping. Write the names of the gift
recipients on the master receipt or put
their initials beside their purchased
items. Place those receipts in one
envelope where you’ll keep your copies
of the receipts. On the gift receipts, write
the names for whom the gifts are
intended. Place those receipts in the
other envelope that will hold all gift
receipts.
When it comes time to wrap gifts, refer
to your gift receipt envelope and match
up the receipts to the correct gift.
Remember, the gift receipt will not
display the price or sometimes even a
product description. It will usually only
have a bar code that will refer to a UPC,
or product number. You may be able to
match the receipt to the number on the
product tag. But again, this is why
writing the name of the person on the
receipt at the time of purchase can
make the process easier. Attach the
receipt to the gift in some way and wrap.
Keep gift
receipts
organized
BUYERS GUIDE 22 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
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also check our selection of:
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The food cooked during the holidays is often enough to feed
an army. Too often, hosts and hostesses prepare and serve
much too much food, only to find themselves left with a
refrigerator full of leftovers when guests don’t eat as much as
hosts had suspected.
In order to avoid wasting food, many people attempt to create
new meals from their excess holiday ingredients. Putting
leftovers to good use can take a little ingenuity to disguise the
reality that you’re eating turkey or ham for the third consecutive
night. All it may take is a little inspiration to create delicious
meals with repurposed holiday foods.
The first thing to keep in mind when using leftovers is food
safety. Any food remaining after the holiday meal should be
packed into storage containers and refrigerated or frozen no
more than 2 hours after the meal has ended. This ensures that
bacteria are not able to proliferate in the food and cause
foodborne illnesses. Choose shallow containers, which will
enable the food to chill more uniformly and not create warmer
spots that take longer to reach a safe storage temperature. Do
not save any foods that have remained at room temperature
for too long or seem questionable, especially dairy products. It
is adviseable to discard leftovers (even if refrigerated) after 4
days. Use it or lose it!
Now that leftovers are properly stored, you can think up some
creative menu ideas for using them in the next few days.
• Turn stuffing into croquettes or burgers by mixing
chopped turkey with stuffing or adding a new meat to the
equation, like sausage.
• Dice ham and potatoes and add to the morning helping
of eggs for a country-style omelette.
• Promptly boil the turkey carcass to make homemade
stock for soups and stews.
• Turn leftover mashed potatoes into a creamy potato
soup, with the addition of cream, bacon and scallions.
• Use cranberry sauce in place of butter
on bagels or toast.
• Mash up leftover sweet potatoes and bake into a moist
and delicious sweet potato loaf bread.
• Create open-faced sandwiches for lunch by layering
ham or turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce and gravy on
top of a thick slice of bread.
• Diced meats, vegetables and onion can be added to a
batter of pancake mix and turned into an easy quiche.
• Host Mexican night and use leftover turkey meat to
make spicy fajitas, complete with sour cream and salsa.
• Use stale bread to make homemade croutons for salad
or use in a bread pudding recipe.
• Add cranberry sauce to boxed muffin
mixes for a tart treat.
• Turn leftover holiday meats into an Asian stir-fry with the
addition of water chestnuts, bean sprouts, soy sauce,
and mixed vegetables.
• Grind meats to make a hearty meat loaf.
• Make leftover potatoes into hash browns.
• Cube leftover cake and serve on skewers and fruit for
dipping into chocolate fondue.
• Use pie crust and small ramekins to turn turkey or ham
into savory pot pies.
There are so many ideas for using leftover holiday foods this
season. Experiment with flavors your family will enjoy.
What to do with all those
holiday leftovers
With a few creative ideas, anyone can turn
leftover holiday foods into new meals.
23 BUYERS GUIDE HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle
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BUYERS GUIDE 24 HOLIDAY gifts & lifestyle