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HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE Beacon Communications | Holidays 2012

be a holiday hero How to pick jewelry like a pro

In with the old

Classic toys for cool kids

Spa-licious!

Godiva/iStock Photo

Beauty treats they’ll be tempted to eat

When it’s the thought that counts Gifts for your favorite couch potato

Sweet Stuff

Chocolate rules as the season’s sweetest gift

Pick 10: Top ideas for books, movies


Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 2

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2012

Can millions of milk chocolate Santa Clauses be wrong? Christmas is just around the corner, heralded by a happy parade of sweets, baubles and bright, shiny lights. It’s gift-giving season. Shopper, your moment is now. In this year’s Gift Guide, you’ll find inspired ideas for delighting those you love. Why wait ’til the last minute? Go shopping. Give back to your community. Here’s wishing you the best the season has to offer! ON THE COVER: Godiva Holiday Truffle Lollipops

Gifts Good Enough to Eat Those who indulge, bulge – unless, of course, the rich treats are destined to be slathered, smeared, scrubbed or spritzed upon the skin.

Baubles, Bangles, Beads A well-selected piece of jewelry is a brilliant gift. Onward, fearless shopper! Here’s how to shine.

The Whole Kit and Caboodle There’s a “grow your own” DIY kit to suit every budding agrarian on your gift list.

Fit to Be Gifted Don’t look now, New Year’s resolutions are on-deck. Launch them into 2013 with a gift that really gets them going

The Sweetest Gift Hope for chocolate springs eternal – especially this time of year. Never have the choices been more artful or delicious.

A Gift of Comfort and Joy Sometimes, it really is the thought that counts. Exploring gifts that lift the spirit.

The Lists Take 10: AwardWinning Books for Kids and Teens Take 10: Laugh Along with the Blogerati

Old-School, New Fun

Take 10: Superheroes at Home

Forego the fads this holiday season and seek out toys that have withstood the test of time.

Take 10: Must-Read Dystopian Novels

The Jewelry Center

3 • Holiday Gift Guide • 2012

Holiday Gift Guide


Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 4

Gifts Good Enough to Eat Those who indulge, bulge – unless, of course, the rich treats are designed to be slathered, smeared, scrubbed or spritzed upon the skin.

Feeling Smitten

Sales of high-end beauty and skincare products are sizzling, up 11 percent to $9.5 billion in 2011, according to NPD Group. And soaps, lotions and treatments crafted from ingredients that are good enough to eat – or at least look that way – are especially popular. Looking for a delicious gift? Go in search of the incredible, almost-edibles. – Jessica Royer Ocken, CTW Features

Cupcake Bath Bomb Ribbon Candy Cupcake Bath Bomb from Feeling Smitten Bath Bakery with berries and sugar and a dash of light rose and carnation ($10.50 for the large size, specialty stores)

Morris Farm & Greenhouses 2779 Warwick Ave., Warwick

Public invited to enjoy the Aldrich Mansion decorated in Victorian Holiday Splendor

Hours: Sun.–Wed. 9-5, Thurs.-Fri. 9-6, Sat. 9-5

Delivery Available 738-1036

2012 Holiday WorksHops Boxwood Wreaths or Kissing Balls November 24, 25, December 1

Boxwood Trees or Kissing Balls December 2, 8, 9, 15, 16

Centerpieces – December 16 Your choice of Times….10am-Noon or 1-3pm (1) class-$30p.p; (2) classes-$55p.p; (3) classes-$65p.p. call 738-1036 for more info or to reserve your spot.

Come in early to get tHat perfeCt CHristmas tree! Christmas Trees (Free LocAL DeLivery) Boxwood Wreaths & Trees Beautiful Wreaths~ Swags Poinsettias~Roping~Kissing Balls

Holiday Events 2012 DINNER BUFFET Friday, December 14 DJ – Main Event Saturday, December 15 DJ - Moondance 6:00pm – 11:00pm Cash Bar - Crudités Display 7:30 Dinner Buffet Featuring the Mansion’s Elaborate Dessert Room $60.00 p.p. includes tax & gratuity Personal Check - No Credit Cards

ALDRICH MANSION

BUFFET LUNCHEONS will be held on December 11, 12 & 13 One Seating – 12:00 Noon $37.50 p.p. includes tax & gratuity

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FOR RESERVATIONS

836 WARWICK NECK AVENUE

WARWICK RI


Lip Creams

Richly scented pine, cypress and lime oil combine in Northern Lights, a new handmade vegan soap from Lush ( $7.95, Macy’s and specialty stores)

Butter Them Up Butter All Over, Rica Bath & Body’s best seller, is billed as “comfort food for the skin,” with coconut, avocado and passion fruit oils ($36, specialty stores)

Vegan Lip Creams from Metropolis Soap Company, made with essential oils, sunflower wax and sunflower oil, come flavored in spearmint with anise, lavender or lime ($6.99, specialty stores)

Make Mine Ginger Ginger Sparkle Shimmer Lotion with fairtrade shea butter and ginger root extract ($12, The Body Shop)

Citrus Relaxation Tangerine and orange essential oils scent Kneipp’s new Stress Free Bath ($20, specialty stores)

5 • Holiday Gift Guide • 2012

Vegan Soap


Ariel Gordon

A well-selected piece of jewelry is a brilliant gift. Onward, fearless shopper! Here is your moment to shine. By Nola Sarkisian-Miller CTW Features For those who want to stand out from the madding crowds this holiday season (does she really need another eternity scarf or a mass-manufactured cashmere sweater?), giving jewelry is one way to shine with your loved one. If buying jewelry instills a sense of fear in the buyer, relax. Thanks to the up and down economy, jewelry is in the midst of a renaissance, providing an easy update for a loved one’s wardrobe. These days, it’s not just about diamonds. Chunky necklaces, cocktail rings and cuff bracelets galore – layers upon layers - have burst on the scene, injecting a sense of fun and style into the bauble mix. “We’re not buying anything that’s not costume or

Dannijo’s bib necklace with marbled resin beads and chain fringe

coming out of India,” says Elyse Walker, founder and owner of her eponymous boutique in Pacific Palisades, Calif., and the fashion director for the Forward by Elyse Walker web site. “Everything is about making a statement.” How to buy with so much to buy? The key is to know your recipient and buy something up her alley,

not yours. “Keep in mind what she wears on a day to day basis,” says Joanne Teichman, co-owner of Ylang 23, a jewelry boutique in Dallas, Texas. “If she never takes off a particular necklace, either buy one to layer with it or buy some earrings or a bracelet.” Fashion-savvy loved ones would appreciate the bolder style of collar necklaces. Dannijo’s bib styles with marbled resin beads and chain fringe looks are popular at the Beckley boutiques in Las Vegas and Los Angeles, says Beckley owner Melissa Akkaway. Tom Binn’s tiered necklaces with epoxy-covered crystals are favorites at Elyse Walker. Good layering options are the initial pendant necklaces by Los Angeles-based Ariel Gordon Jewelry, crafted with a playful font and worn by A-listers such as Drew Barrymore and Jessica Biel. Jennifer Meyer’s jewelry is on fire at Ylang 23. The designer who is also the wife of “Spider-Man” actor Tobey Maguire has attracted a star following – Jennifer Anniston, Emma Stone, Katie Holmes – for her diamond-engraved initial necklaces and personalized nameplate necklaces. “Personalization in buying Make it yours: Gold nameplate necklace by Jenis key,” says nifer Meyer designer Ariel Gordon. “People like to connect to their purchases emotionally and that’s what sells the best. If you opt to buy bracelets, pile on the purchases. The more the merrier. It’s all about arm candy this season heaped with color. Think cuffs adorned with beads, screws or spikes, gold cuffs and bangles. Dannijo offers “arm party” styles, which can include up to 12 bracelets loaded with skulls, chain links, crystals and more. For an edgy gift, enamel skull cuffs from Alexander McQueen found at Forward by Elyse Walker are in vogue. Bracelets “are ideal for all the ladies on the list – a wife, a girlfriend, a mother or a sister,” Akkaway says.

Jennifer Meyer

Ariel Gordon bezel rings

Dannijo

Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 6

Baubles, Bangles & Bright, Shiny Beads


Dannijo

Pile it on: Dannijo ‘arm party’ bracelets, loaded skulls, chain links, crystals and more

few fingers featuring spikes and antique patinas are top sellers at Forward by Elyse Walker. You can also keep it playful with a brightly colored watch. La Mer Collections, which are holiday favorites at Beckley, many of which are priced for under $100, come in a variety of hues, from shimmery metallics to vivid neons like yellow, green and pink. The triple wrap straps and chain/ charm styles with multiple stainless steel layers fit in with the bracelet bonanza trend. Color punch: La Mer Collections neon pink leather wrap watch “These are at a great price and are quite doable as a presbuy or not based on the status of your ent,” Akkaway says. relationship, but you should not make Not going overboard is the consenthe recipient uncomfortable with overspending,” Teichman says. sus advice when it comes to jewelry purchases, experts say. © CTW Features “There are no rules on what to

La Mer

and lace-looking styles are in demand at Ylang 23. While rings are a more difficult purchase in terms of sizing and the emotions they convey, you have more options this year. Unusual stones – like quartz, moonstone and agates – mounted in large statement rings are one way to buy a one-of-a-kind style. Highlights include Jamie Joseph’s opal rings, such as the two-toned Mexican Fire Opal or the dimensional pink coral opal, which are “crazy strong” sellers, Teichman says, and Ariel Gordon’s bezel set rings with old-world-looking stones with faceted dome tops. Stacking is another way to showcase rings. Jewelry designer Ioselliani offers sets of four or five stacked rings in irregular shapes with Swarovski stones. At Von Bargen’s Jewelry stores in Vermont and New Hampshire, customers are mixing a number of ring styles, such as artisan and steel bands. Pamela Love’s knuckle rings that can span a

7 • Holiday Gift Guide • 2012

Earrings are classic choices for a jewelry purchase even though styles are less than traditional this season. The trend is light and airy with a focus on cut-out options, Teichman says. Rose gold, which is a gold and copper alloy, is one of the industry’s hottest metals, known for its vintage feel. Laurent Gandini’s rose gold dangle styles, including birds, flowers and a heart,


Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 8

Futurama Farmers of America:

The Whole Kit & Caboodle

Cheese, whiskey, apples, mushrooms. There’s a DIY kit to suit every back-to-the-earth fancy. Some assembly (and with apples, several years and favorable growing conditions) required.

Back to the Roots

By Lindsey Romain CTW Features There’s a grassroots movement afoot. A new generation is looking to the past, swapping cars for bikes, planting gardens and seeking out Fun with fungi: a mushroom growing kit

organic, local sources of food. Finding a gift that passes muster with a sustainable-minded friend or loved one may seem like a tall order, but, in fact, it’s easier than ever thanks to a bounty of innovative do-it-yourself kits. Kits for


Potting Shed Creations

aspects of the DIY process. The Apple Tree-to-Be kit ($22) from Potting Shed Creations comes with 5 Ralls Janet apple seeds, a coir seedling pot, growing medium, a terracotta saucer, an aluminum tag, a hydrocarbon-free jute bag and a reference guide. Ann Killen, co-founder, says the company has been organic since the beginning, with products including wine bottles recycled to grow culinary herbs and contain terrarium gardens, and recycled steel and bamboo windowsill boxes for micro-greens. She also offers a Yule Tree-to-Be, for growing a

For budding Johnny (and Jane) Appleseeds: the grow-your-own apple tree kit

Urban Cheesecraft

Glee Gum

There’s a make-your-own-food kit for virtually every taste: clockwise from upper left, make your own gummy candy (out of seaweed), dark chocolate and chewing gum.

same basic principles of most DIY kits – they’re all natural, with no artificial color, flavor, sweetener or preservatives – but they’re higher in sugar content and are more fun for kids. Kits offer something for everyone. Whiskey lovers will get a kick out of Woodinville’s product – “There’s nothing like pouring friends a glass of your own whiskey from the barrel,” says Sorensen – and there are plenty of other niche kits, for beer, root beer, soda and wine. Spreading the word about the rewards of cheese making was one of the perks for Urban Cheesecraft’s Lucero. After teaching herself how to make cheese and intriguing friends and family with the process, she started a cheese-making workshop. “Soon, it hit me that clear instructions, gathered ingredients and fast, simple cheese might be enjoyed by my friends and the Etsy community,” she says of the online marketplace where she started her business. At the end of the day, the real joy of kit giving isn’t just the idea of gifting a loved one something they’ll enjoy. Like any great gift, it’s about the shared experience.

Cheese it!: mozzarela, chevre and paneer in minutes

“With a DIY kit, you get much more than whatever you can make with it,” says Molly Lederer, Glee Gum director of marketing. “You get a memorable activity, a unique, hands-on way to spend time with friends or family. Time shared together is what makes the holidays special. That’s why more and more folks are choosing interactive gifts that everyone can enjoy.” © CTW Features

9 • Holiday Gift Guide • 2012

growing or making foods and beverages are an easy way for folks to roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty – or maybe just a little sticky – in a new project. Chances are, there’s an intrepid soul on your shopping list who’d be thrilled with a gift that challenges them to make something new, from scratch. A kit “is cute, and it’s not a huge commitment in cost, time or amount of supplies,” says Claudia Lucero, cofounder of Urban Cheesecraft, a Portland company that sells DIY cheese kits ($19 to $50, specialty stores). With a dash of citric acid and some milk, home-crafted fresh mozzarella, ricotta or goat cheese is ready to serve in an hour. Cheese making is “easy, accessible and empowering,” says Lucero, and brings people closer to their food source. “When people realize that an ‘old-world’ craft like cheese making can be taken on at home, they are immediately intrigued,” she says. That old-world vibe can be a plus or a minus, depending on the giftee; but it’s difficult to imagine anyone who’d be put off by the idea of creating something from nothing. The hands-on involvement “gives you ownership over the gift,” says Orlin Sorensen, co-owner of Woodinville Whiskey Co., a company that sells make-your-own whiskey kits ($149.99), available online or in Washington State and Oregon liquor stores. “For most people, there’s a lot more pride in earning a dollar than being given a dollar.” Many kits emphasize the grubbier

Christmas tree. Killen attributes the growing interest in the plant kits to curiosity about food development. “Maybe it’s because there is so much unknown with food and where it comes from,” she says. “Maybe it’s wanting a smaller footprint.” The Apple Tree-to-Be kit offers something else: together time. “It is a project that people can do together,” Killen says. “The process of planting, watching it grow and transplanting the tree to its final spot creates a shared experience.” Patience helps. It can take up to 10 years for a tree to journey from seed to actual apple production. For less patient agrarians, there’s Back to the Roots ($19.95), a growyour-own mushroom kit that promises a half-pound of edible mushrooms in just 10 days. According to Back to the Roots communications lead Megan Yarnell, the idea for the product came about when its co-founders, Nikhil Arora and Alejandro Velez, heard during a business ethnics lecture that it was possible to grow mushrooms on recycled coffee grounds. After some successful experimentation, they started growing mushrooms for area restaurants. When friends started asking how they could grow mushrooms, too, the kits were born. Yarnell thinks the advantages of Back to the Roots extends beyond just the growing process, which is why it makes such a great holiday gift. “People can use the food to cook a meal for their friends or family. It’s a gift that keeps on giving, and it’s really distinctive.” Underscoring its community spirit, Back to the Roots donates a kit and a sustainability curriculum to the classrooms of choice of mushroomers who post a photo of their grown kit on the company’s Facebook page. Not every food-related kit requires soil and a green thumb. Glee Glum offers three fun candy kits: Make Your Chocolate, Make Your Own Chewing Gum and Make Your Own Gummies ($13.95 each, upscale grocers and specialty stores). These follow the


Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 10

Old-School, New Fun Forego the fads this holiday season and seek out toys that have withstood the test of time. Classic Jack-inthe-Box

By Taniesha Robinson CTW Features

Courtesy of The Strong/National Museum of Play

Sixty years ago, when French electrician Andre Cassagnes came up with the idea for a toy that used a joystick, glass and aluminum powder to draw pictures, he probably had no idea it would provide joyous playtime for children decades later. Today, Etch A Sketch is a household name that even made headlines during this year’s political season. How does such a simple toy still have so much popularity? Toys that stand the test of time “draw you in, challenge you and remind you why you’re amused every time you play with them,” says Scott Eberle, who writes the Play in Mind blog for Psychology Today and co-authored “Classic Toys of the National Toy Hall of Fame,” (Running Press, 2009). Etch A Sketch entered the hall of fame in 1998. Classic toys foster learning and encourage creativity, Eberle says. To make the hall of fame, a toy must attain “icon” status

In With the Old Continued innovation is one hallmark of classic toys. Check out these new twists on some timeless toys:

LEGO Friends Girls love LEGOs, too – and early this year the company launched its first product line, Friends, tailored to them. Now, some 27 percent of U.S. sales of the construction toy are to girls, up from 9 percent last year, the company says.

o T p c

m – with wide recognition, respect and lon- w gevity – and display innovation. a Toys that are creative or engage the c imagination are more likely to become a c timeless hit with children, says Phil Wrzes- w inski, owner of Jackson, Mich.-based Toy t House & Baby Too toy store. He says n his top sellers are usually interactive and h open-ended, providing many ways to play. t “A lot of modern toys, everything is W sort of scripted out for the kids and the a play patterns are not as random,” says o Tim Walsh, author of “Timeless Toys,” a (Andrews McMeel, 2005). Walsh invented the board game Blurt and is a fan of toys f such as crayons, LEGO and Play-Doh that b allow a child to create and build “anything d that their mind conceives. l Adrienne Appell, trend analyst for the o Toy Industry Assoc., cautions holiday g shoppers in search of a special toy for a s child to avoid “watch-me” toys. “They’re fun and they’re cute for a little while, but they don’t really captivate the children

Barbie I Can Be… President $14 Barbie is running for President and standing on her own two feet this year – literally. Barbie I Can Be… President doll is the first to stand without support in Barbie’s 53-year history.


Courtesy of The Strong/National Museum of Play

or hold their interest.” The best toys allow for play that evolves and changes. Author Scott Eberle makes an exception for wind-up toys such as a Jack-in-the-Box and cheerful figures that a child can bring to life with a few twists of a key. “As you set them in motion they seem to spur imagination rather than vitiate and degrade it,” he says. “One of the tenants of a timeless toy is that kids love to play with it repeatedly,” Walsh says. “They don’t play with it once and say, ‘Oh ok, I’m bored. That’s enough of that.’ They come back to it again and again.” Repeated-play value is the key factor for toys to continue entertaining children beyond the holiday season, let alone decades. And, to find the right toy for little ones and big kids alike, toy store owner Phil Wrzesinski encourages giftgivers to seek out help from their local toy store. “Your local, independent toy store

is going to know these kinds of toys,” Wrzesinski says. “This is what we all do. We talk about not just what’s cute and what’s going to be a good seller but what fits our mission and what’s going to be a great toy.” Analyst Adrienne Appell encourages gift-givers to pick a toy that resonates with them personally and then share that experience with the child they’re buying it for. “That creates new memories,” she says. Walsh agrees: “When a toy or game can last ten or fifteen years and you start to see a second generation of people playing it, it starts to have more meaning because there are memories involved.” © CTW Features

Twister Mania for XBOX 360 Kinect $20 Gamers must bend and twist their bodies with lightning speed to match the shapes of silhouetted objects on screen. Yes, the muscle-pulling risk remains an essential part of gameplay.

Scrabble Flash $30 It’s the old word-building game you love with shuffling speed. Build as many words as you can with the electronic tiles before time runs out.

11 • Holiday Gift Guide • 2012

Etch A Sketch


Madelaine Chocolate Co.

Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 12

The Sweetest Gift Hope for chocolate springs eternal – especially this time of year. Never have the choices been more artful or delicious.

By Jessica Royer Ocken CTW Features

V

Happiness in a box A box of chocolates is a virtually goof-proof holiday gift. Easy to find, not too costly, impressively packaged and wrapped, a chocolate assortment offers something for everyone. (Not wild about nougat? Here, try the maple fudge!) It’s a gift that’s passed the test of time. The humble Whitman’s Sampler celebrates its

Simply Sweet: chocolate penguins, top, from Madelaine Chocolate Co. ; Godiva Holiday Trufflle Lollipops, right

Godiva

isions of many candies dance in our heads come holiday time: candy canes on the tree, peppermints fashioned into wreaths, allsorts stuffed in stockings. But one reigns supreme. The holiday season is practically drenched in chocolate. Chocolates, gift-boxed or pick your own, ranked as the No. 2 holiday gift last year surpassed only by books, according to Unity Marketing, a Stevens, Penn. marketing consultancy that surveyed 2,000 buyers. “Chocolate earns its top rating as a gift because it fits the bill. It is something everyone likes, yet it also feels like a treat,” says Pam Danziger Unity Marketing president. “Even though it is readily available and accessible, chocolate still makes the recipient feel special.” Happily for holiday shoppers, there’s a gobsmacking array of creative, delicious new offerings from which to choose. If you’re lucky, there’s a handcrafted chocolate maker on Main Street in your town who’ll offer a sample before you buy.

100th anniversary this year. Top seller: the 12-ounce sampler ($8.99, drug and grocery stores). “We’re just part of people’s traditions,” says Mark Sesler, chief marketing officer for Russell Stover Candies, owner of Whitman’s. “We’re part of the holiday feeling no matter how modern or advanced society has become.” While U.S. consumers have long preferred milk chocolate, our appreciation for dark chocolate is on the rise. “Consumers’ palates are changing and adapting as they learn about and try new, finer varieties,” says Joan Vieweger, president of the Fine Chocolate Industry Assoc. and cofounder of Choclatique, a Los Angeles artisan chocolate maker. A growing interest in the origins of chocolate and the conditions in countries where cacao is grown is shaping our tastes. Consultant Joan Steuer, president of Chocolate Marketing, LLC, describes this phenomenon as “chocolate with a purpose,” and notes that many brands now tout their earth-friendly practices and support for local farmers right along with the rich flavor of their product. New this year, the Feed 8 Origins Collection from Godiva ($25 for 8 pieces, Godiva boutiques) caters to this worldly perspective with a globe-trotting box of chocolates from around the world: Ecuador Dark, Costa Rica Milk, Uganda Dark and Venezuela Milk. Godiva provides eight school meals for children in these countries for every box sold.


At the holiday time, chocolatiers pile it on, amping up the drama (and upping the price) by stacking box on box. A tower of boxed, beribboned chocolates is a generous gift, and the presentation can be thrilling, especially for children. Choclatique offers a Tower of Delight with more than 110 pieces of chocolate in 12 colorful boxes stacked nearly 2-feet tall ($195, online). The brightly wrapped and beribboned 3-box holiday tower from Portland-based Moonstruck Chocolate combines a classic assortment, dark chocolate and milk chocolate ($60, specialty retailers and fine grocers).

Fancy that!

Bright Ideas for Holiday Candy • P lace bright foil-wrapped candies and

chocolates in glass jars of different sizes. Wrap the jars with holiday ribbons.

• C hocolate lovers can develop a “house

special” signature hot cocoa recipe (use Moonstruck’s version, below, as a starter). Rim the edge of the mug with crushed red and white peppermint candies. Add a peppermint stick as a beverage stirrer.

• C reate a unique candy- or chocolate-of-themonth club for someone special on your gift list. Spread the gifts over 12 months, and deliver a sweet, locally purchased treat to your loved one

Holiday Shopping Strolls FRIDAY EVENINGS, DEC. 7, 14, & 21ST Enjoy store sales, ice carving & strolling holiday entertainment.

• W  rap holiday gifts in white craft paper and

tie with a simple cord. Attach candy canes,

Chocolate is easy to mold, shape ribbon candy or flat swirled lollipops.  and decorate, and season by seaSource: National Confectioners Assoc. son, chocolate makers vie to deliver the most fanciful designs. The Christmas season marks a pinnacle of their creativity. The Madelaine Chocolate Co., which On the luxury end, there are shaped makes high-end chocolates for many chocolates shaped and flavored for more private labels, also produces an enddiscerning palates. For the young-at-heart less, charming parade of foil-wrapped and deep of pocket, Choclatique offers a novelty chocolate items designed to box of 15 cupcake-flavored truffles – each delight children at the holidays: Santas, tiny morsel shaped and iced to resemble snowmen, Hanukkah coins, angels, bells, a fanciful pastry ($35 for a 51-piece box). They’re also available as doughnuts. In the fancy-food-on-a-stick department, Godiva’s Holiday Truffle lollipops ($3) are intricately detailed, the wreath with a tiny red ribbon, the snowman with a carrot nose. At Moonstruck Chocolates the whimsical four-piece Mr. and Mrs. Claus or Penguin Truffle Collections ($15) are best sellers. Even mass-market chocolatiers strive for distinction at holiday time. For the second year, Nestlé is partnering with artist Paul Frank on a limited edition Nestlé Crunch bar. The 2.75-oz. bar, packaged in a gift envelope, boasts a new wideA box of doughnut-shaped truffles from Choclatique mouthed portrait of Julius the Monkey bears, Christmas lights, Christmas trees, and his pal Clancy the Giraffe ($1.99, penguins, stars. The company will sell Target). some 40,000 of the jolly 1-oz chocolate © CTW Features Mr. Santa Claus figures, says Estee Farber, marketing director. Mr. Santa “is adorable, he’s shiny, he’s very seasonal,” she says. The seasonal figures “are stockingstuffers, and you can afford to buy one for everyone at your holiday table.”

Choclatique

A Festive Night. A Shopper’s Delight.

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13 • Holiday Gift Guide • 2012

Why stop at one?


Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 14

Take 10: HD Heroes

Bring Home a Big-Screen Hero Superheroes, bigger and more vivid than life, are here to stay. Just ask Joss Whedon, whose film, “The Avengers,” became the third highest grossing movie of all time this year, with a worldwide gross of over $1 billion. Add in Marc Webb’s “The Amazing Spider-man” and Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight Rises,” and 2012 marks the year superheroes officially transitioned from nerdy pastime to bona fide pop culture royalty. – Lindsey Romain, CTW Features

1 The Avengers (Walt Disney Home Entertainment) Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo, $39.99

2

Spider-Man: The High Definition Trilogy (Sony Pictures Home Entertainment), $92.95

3

The Dark Knight (Warner Home Video), $12.96

4

X-Men Trilogy (Fox Home Entertainment), $59.99

5

The Incredibles (Buena Vista Home Entertainment) FourDisc Blu-ray/DVD + Digital Copy, $45.99

Jewelry • Furs • Gifts • Clothing Pashmina & Winter Scarves • Gloves Accessories • Vintage • Handbags

401-647-7788 134 Danielson Pike, Scituate, RI www.glitzshoes.webs.com

Watchmen (Warner Home Video), $7.99

8

Blade Collection (Alliance), $64.98

9

Superman: The Movie (Warner Home Video), $19.98

Batman: The Motion Picture Anthology 1989-1997 (Warner Home Video), $49.95 –

10 Iron Man (Paramount), $29.99

Stop in f or all your shopping needs

Specializing in the extraordinary for over 35 years. We stop at nothing to get the best selection for you!

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© CTW Features

Celebrating\ 35 Plus Years!


15 • Holiday Gift Guide • 2012

Come join us at the 12th Annual

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Friday, December 7, 2012 • 10am-9pm • Stroll begins at 3pm Saturday, December, 8, 2012 • 10am-8pm Sponsored by the Scituate Business Association Our merchants are filled to the brim with wonderful gifts and goodies for everyone on your holiday shopping list. Be sure to stop by each store to see what surprises the merchants have in store for their customer.

Bring all the warmth & beauty of a country Christmas to your home this holiday season!

Stop in f or all your shopping needs Primitive & Country Accessories for Home & Garden Please Visit Us During the N. Scituate Village Candlelight Stroll Fri., December 7 (3pm-9pm) and Sat., December 8 (10am-6pm) for lots of good old-fashioned holiday fun! We have all the trimmings, nostalgic treasures, scents of the season, and perhaps that perfect gift for someone on your list. Tues. 12-5 • Thurs. 12-8 • Fri., Sat. and Sun. 12-5

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Garmin

Gifted

Don’t look now, New Year’s resolutions are on-deck. Launch them into 2013 with a gift that really gets them going By Anne Stein CTW Features There are fitness gadgets to excite and inspire exercisers of any level, whether you’re shopping for an Ironman triathlete or trying to persuade a couch potato to get up and get active. And since it’s all in the name of health, you might just want to pick up a duplicate gift for yourself.

Keep in mind what activities interest the individual, says Jessica Matthews, exercise physiologist with the American Council on Exercise. This will help you identify gifts that they will use and enjoy. “Are they someone who enjoys working out at home or do they prefer attending group fitness classes? Would they perhaps like working one-on-one with a personal trainer at the gym? It’s important to consider how he or she is most likely to work out,” says Matthews.

Let it snow… New Balance

Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 16

Fit to Be

If your favorite runner dreads winter because of snow and ice, check out the New Balance Winter 110 trail running shoe. This minimalist-style shoe is wrapped with a waterproof layer that protects feet from slush and snow, and it comes with plush lining for warmth ($125, running shops). Someone more interested in a walk or short hike might try the New Balance 1099 lightweight boot. It’s waterproof and the sole’s designed to grip snow and ice ($110). Buying the right clothing for the outdoor exercise enthusiast makes a great gift.

Let it snow: lightweight New Balance boot with soles designed for slippery conditions

Numbers on the run: Garmin Forerunner 610

Dressing in layers is ideal for exercising outdoors in the winter, so consider hats, gloves, scarves and socks designed for the activity of choice. “Layers protect the exerciser from the elements while giving them the flexibility to remove layers if they become too warm,” Matthews says. Indoor exercisers who want a new strength-training tool will love the Century Dual Grip Medicine Ball, (in 8-, 12-, 16and 20-pound versions). The vinyl ball, which is filled with sand that shifts slightly as you grip and move it, tests muscles and coordination by combining the qualities of a medicine ball with the challenge of a sand bag ($25-$45, sporting goods stores). Consider purchasing training sessions with a local certified personal trainer for someone who prefers the indoors and is new to fitness. Matthews, a certified personal trainer and yoga instructor, says working with a professional offers many benefits, “from learning the basics about fitness, such as how to perform exercises with proper form, to having a customized program developed by a qualified professional to help the individual reach his/her unique health and fitness goals.” Keeping cool while you’re working out can be a challenge and even a safety issue in extreme summer temperatures. Mission’s EnduraCool Instant Cooling Towel provides two hours of quick, chemical-free relief from the heat. Just wet the towel and snap it to lower the towel’s temperature to 59 degrees within a minute, whether you’re indoors or out. Wet again to re-activate. ($14.99/large size, sporting goods stores). Monitoring heart rate can be a great motivational tool for athletes. A chest

strap or a finger sensor allows the user to target a specific heart rate range in order to achieve the maximum benefit from a workout without overdoing it. Prices vary from around $60 to $400 or more, depending on the bells and whistles. Erik Hroncich, owner of Seattle-based EDGE Personal Training, recommends Garmin, Polar and Timex, popular brands with multiple versions. Garmin’s new Forerunner 610 has a touch-screen, wristwatchstyle system with GPS, heart rate monitor and the ability to wirelessly upload and track running routes and stats to a computer ($400, sporting goods stores and specialty shops).

Muscle madness From bike-riding Olympians to regular Joes out for a jog, athletes everywhere are wearing compression garments, skintight black sleeves and socks designed to squeeze and compress muscles and enhance performance. Now they’re available in a stylish pink, medical grade material from Cramer sports medicine products. Cramer’s Endurance Support System (ESS) sleeves promise to increase muscular blood flow and flush away painful lactic acid to allow quicker recovery and tougher workouts ($20 - $25 for calf, thigh, knee, arm and ankle, sporting goods stores).

Safety first If your kid’s already a jock but you just can’t get him or her to wear a protective mouth guard – essential to decreasing the risk of concussion and protecting teeth – try MoGo Sport’s new flavored mouth guards, which fit adults, too. They come in lemon, orange, mint, bubble


Century

17 • Holiday Gift Guide • 2012

gum and fruit punch, are BPA-free and contain natural flavors that last for the life of the mouth guard. They even fit over braces ($11.99, sporting goods stores).

Get a grip: Century dual grip medicine ball is filled with sand

Fitness-related gifts aren’t just for those who are already in great shape. Sometimes, the right gift can encourage someone in need of a life change. An inexpensive pedometer or fitness-tracking software for a smartphone can be helpful reminding someone to be active, according to Pete McCall, a San Diego exercise physiologist. While daily weigh-ins can be demoralizing, since an exerciser isn’t likely to see losses daily, tracking weight every 10 days or so may be beneficial, McCall says. The FitBit Aria ($149) is a WiFi-enabled scale that records weight, body fat and BMI and wirelessly sends the info to a computer to track calories, pounds lost and overall progress. The device also connects with others trying to lose weight via the FitBit website. Each family member can create his or her own account ($149, specialty stores).

VeloPress

Tools of the trade

Whether it’s walking and skiing 420 nautical miles across the South Pole or cycling 240 miles across five mountain ranges in Costa Rica, there are dozens of races that’ll take months or years to prepare for. Meanwhile, a reader can simply enjoy the images (bookstores, $29.95). © CTW Features

Books to inspire “The World’s Toughest Endurance Challenges,” by Richard Hoad and Paul Moore (VeloPress, 2012) is great reading for the most adventurous athlete on your list.

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Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 18

Take 10: Dystopian Top DVDs for Novels the Cable-Free

Reading the Cable End of the World CatchingList Upfor With

It’s a feast for fans of “The Hunger Games.” The wildly successful film adaptation of the dark novel hits DVD shelves this holiday season. Suzanne Collins’ blockbuster trilogy about a young Katniss Everdeen battling for her life in a post-apocalyptic North America has drawn more readers to the world of dystopian literature; new post-apocalyptic young adult titles crop up every month. Here are ten top titles about young people in dystopian peril, perfect for any Katniss fan’s stocking. – Lindsey Romain, CTW Features

5 “Exodus,”  by Julie Bertagn (Walker

1

“The Scorpio Races,”  by Maggie Stiefvater (Scholastic, 2011) $17.99

2

“Divergent,”  by Veronica Roth (Katherine Tegen Books, 2011) $17.99

6

3

“Delirium,”  by Lauren Oliver (HarperCollins, 2012) $17.99

“Life As We Knew It,”  by Susan Beth Pfeffer (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2008) $17

7

“Matched,”  by Ally Condie(Penguin Group, 2010) $17.99

4

“Legend,”  by Marie Lu (Penguin Group, 2011) $17.99

Books for Young Readers, 2008) $16.95

8

“Bumped,”  by Megan McCafferty (Balzer + Bray, 2011) $16.99

9 “The Forest

of Hands and Teeth,”  by Carrie Ryan (Delacorte Books for Young Readers, 2010) $16.99

10 “The Maze Run-

ner,”  by James Dashner (Random House Children’s Books, 2010) $16.99 © CTW Features


19 • Holiday Gift Guide • 2012


Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 20

Take 10: Children’s Books

And Then What Happened? What happens when Daisy’s ball is destroyed? When all the lights go out? When a family must flee their homeland? Adventure happens, that’s what – and so does discovery, learning and joy. Buy a child and book, and ask to share an hour. Here, a few of 2012’s best, for tots, teens and you. – Mary Connors, CTW Features

4 “Me… Jane,” by Patrick McDonnell

(Little, Brown and Co. div. of Hachette Book Group, 2011) $15.99 Caldecott Honor

1 “A Ball for Daisy,” by Chris Raschka (Schwartz & Wade Books, 2011) $16.99 Caldecott Medal

5

2 “Blackout,” by John Rocco (Disney

Hyperion Books, 2011) $16.99 Caldecott Honor

3

“Grandpa Green,” by Lane Smith (Roaring Brook Press, 2011) $16.99 Caldecott Honor

6

“Dead End in Norvelt,” by Jack Gantos (Farrar Straus Giroux, 2011) $15.99 Newbery Medal “Rotters” audio book, written by Daniel Kraus, narrated by Kirby Heyborne (Random House audio, 2011) $35 Odyssey Award

7 “The Notorious Benedict Arnold,”

b y Steve Sheinkin (Flash Point, 2010) $19.99 YALSA Award for young adult nonfiction

8

“Inside Out & Back Again,” by Thanhha Lai (HarperCollins Children’s Books, 2011) $16.99 Newbery Honor

9

“Breaking Stalin’s Nose,” by Eugene Yelchin (Henry Holt and Co., 2011) $15.99 Newbery Honor

10 “Where Things Come Back,” by John Corey Waley (Atheneum, 2012) $8.99 Printz Award.

Tax Credit For Bio-Mass Heaters

PELLET

© CTW Features


21 • Holiday Gift Guide • 2012

Take 10: Blogbusters!

Laugh Out Loud with the Blogerati The once dignified kingdom of coffee table books, where Norman Rockwell retrospectives ruled, has fallen to the shameless, hilarious hordes. Behold the many highly giftable books from bloggers who first rocketed to fame online. Here are photos of people obscuring a body part with vinyl record sleeves, there are portraits of families you’re glad aren’t yours – and get a load of those snapshots of Legos, pizza and, uh, other stuff on cats. Send tidings of laughter and joy with any of these happy volumes. – Lindsey Romain, CTW Features

1 “Sleeveface: Be the Vinyl,”  by John Rostron and Carl

5 “Garfield Minus Garfield,” by Jim Davis (Ballantine

2

“Feminist Ryan Gosling,” by Danielle Henderson (Running Press, 2012) $12.95

6

3

“Awkward Family Photos,” by Mike Bender and Doug Chernack (Three Rivers Press, 2010) $15

7

4

“Rules for my Unborn Son,” by Walker Lamond (St. Martin’s Press, 2009) $14.99

“Stuff on My Cat,” by Mario Garza (Chronicle Books, 2006) $9.95

8

“This is Why You’re Fat: Where Dreams Become

Morris (Artisan, 2008) $13.95

Books, 2008) $13

“PostSecret: Extraordinary Confessions from Ordinary Lives,” by Frank Warren (William Morrow, 2005) $28.99

Heart Attacks,”  by Jessica Amason and Richard Blakeley (HarperCollins, 2009) $19.99

9 “Stuff White People Like,” by Christian Lander (Random House Trade Paperbacks, 2008) $15

10 “I Can Has Cheezburger: A LOLcat Collekshun,”

b y Professor Happycat and icanhascheezburger.com (Gotham, 2008) $10 © CTW Features


Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 22

Choose happy: author Marilyn Tam

A Breath of Fresh Air Practicing yoga can lead to a greater improvement of mood and a decrease in anxiety, according to a 2010 study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine by a researcher at the Boston University School of Medicine. Yoga studios offer a variety of classes to fit the interests and skill level of the student. Many sell class cards so the recipient can select classes at his or her convenience. To take the gift to a higher level, consider adding a yoga retreat. At Nurture Through Nature in Maine, retreaters can design their own holistic eco-retreat, with private yoga instruction, guided mediation sessions and wood-fired steam baths.

A Gift of

Comfort & Joy

week for a particular season, or creating a gift basket of locally produced honey, jams, granola and grains.

A Gift to Keep Giving Consider a gift that invests in the future of others. Many global fair trade companies distribute their wares to local gift stores and some have online storefronts, including Ten Thousand Villages, Akron, Penn. Marketing manager Michele Loeper says the group’s sole focus is to end poverty around the globe. The organization provides sustainable income opportunities to

A Taste of Local Fare A membership to a local food cooperative is a gift that combines tasty treats with meaningful investment. A food cooperative gives back to its members and the community.

By Melanie Wanzek CTW Features This holiday season, take a moment to slow down – and then contemplate how to help others do the same. “It is so easy in our very hectic world to forget what’s really important,” says Marilyn Tam, author of the forthcoming “The Happiness Choice,” (Wiley, 2013). “This is true even if we are so focused on something good.” Tam speaks from her own bustling life experience. The former CEO of Aveda, Tam held senior executive positions at Reebok and Nike. She co-founded and now serves as executive director of the Us Foundation, a nonprofit that facilitates global action to address social, economic and environmental issues. Even while doing important work, she

says, one needs time to step away and reflect on living a balanced life,. “We live dynamic lives, so we need to recognize there is a dynamic balance for different moments in time,” she says. For Tam, the idea of a life-enhancing gift has less to do with objects than with a special experience. “We have so much stuff,” Tam says. “What we need to think about is how we can help people we love have the opportunity to relish the moment through meaningful experiences we can share together.” A meaningful gift, she believes, is one rooted in unique, memorable experiences. Find activities that someone might not choose to do on his or her own, such as a cooking class, a pottery class or even a hot air balloon ride. Ready to give a life-giving gift? Here are some ideas.

Ten Thousand Villages

Sometimes, it really is the thought that counts. Exploring gifts that lift the spirit. Gifts with fair-trade pedigree: a hand-painted tray from Peru, left; above, a hand-cut mollusk shell set in a sterling necklace

Co-ops throughout the country offer a variety of food, wellness and home goods. No two are exactly the same, but they all share the same priority: serving people, says Elizabeth Archerd, membership and marketing manager for The Wedge, a Minneapolis cooperative. The most important consideration in purchasing a cooperative membership is location, she says. Proximity is key. At The Wedge, an $80 deposit covers the onetime lifetime membership fee on behalf of someone else; the receiver then stops in the co-op to complete the paperwork to become a member. Other options: a pre-paid summer CSA membership, through which recipients receive a box of fresh local produce each

artists in developing countries by traveling to the countries, forming relationships with the artisans and buying their work at a fair price. “Our purchasing is based on longterm relationships and consistent orders from year to year, meaning artisan can plan for the future and build better lives,” Loeper says. “Every purchase made at a Ten Thousand Villages store allows us to provide real and lasting income opportunity to women and men who would otherwise have no real income opportunity.” © CTW Features


23 • Holiday Gift Guide • 2012


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Holiday Gift Guide • 2012 • 24

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Gift Guide 2012