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Spend some time doing what you love Christmas truly is my favourite time of year. As soon as the calendar hits Dec. 1, the boxes and boxes of Christmas decorations come out. My favourite holiday-themed movies are played on repeat and my custom country Christmas playlist comes out which yes, features “All I want for Christmas is a real good tan” by Kenny Chesney as well as some of the more traditional carols. My husband picks out the largest tree he can find – sometimes we cut our own, sometimes we go to one of the many fundraisers hosted by local clubs and groups. But most of the time we get the tree home and have to take a large chunk off the bottom because neither one of us can actually remember how tall our ceilings are. Last year, the addition of a fat orange kitten meant we had to bolt the tree down to a piece of plywood and hide a few broken branches
Goldstream News Gazette editor, Katherine Engqvist’s cat Murray is a bit of terror around the Christmas tree. in the back. Thankfully, by that point we’d trained him to stop chewing on electrical cords so we were able to avoid a Griswold’s family Christmas mishap. We also learned not to leave anything that remotely smelled like food or catnip under the tree… But that’s what the holidays are all about, making memories. Whether it’s a disastrously raw turkey or the kids tearing through wrapping in the morning, I
just like to take a step back during this time of year and take it all in. While that can be challenging with all of the events and chaos that comes along with the holidays, it’s important to remember what this season is about. One of my favourite traditions is making gingersnap cookies. Growing up on the farm meant making batches of gingersnaps by the dozens to give to friends and family. Actually, if memory
serves, my record is making 54 dozen on Christmas. We have an industrial mixer at the farm which means I can mix them all at once, unfortunately it still takes hours to roll out all of those cookies and bake them. But it’s a labour of love and a way to spend some quality time with family members as I usually enlist the help of some unwilling participants. So if you can, take some time to spend with your loved ones, round up a few items for the food bank, and when you’re out shopping, pick up a toy for a child in need. And if you’re a little behind on your holiday shopping – or even if you’re not – watch the Gazette’s Facebook page in the coming weeks for lots of great contests. Starting Dec. 4 we will be kicking off our 12 Days of Christmas giveaway with tons of great items up for grabs. – Katherine Engqvist
GINGERSNAP COOKIES • • • • • • • • •
2 cups flour 3 tsp ginger 2 tsp baking soda 1 tsp cinnamon 1/2 tsp salt 3/4 cup margarine 1 cup sugar + 1/2 cup for rolling 1 egg 4 tbsp molasses
Although these start from balls on a cookie sheet, they end up a flat cookie with a crinkled top. Preheat oven to 350. Mix margarine, sugar, molasses and egg. Once combined add the rest of the dry ingredients. Roll into 1.5 inch balls. Put the remaining sugar into a small bowl. Roll the balls, one at a time in the sugar to coat them. Arrange roughly one dozen of the balls on an ungreased cookie sheets, two inches apart. Bake on the center rack in the oven for roughly eight minutes. Do not over bake. Let stand for two minutes before removing and cool on a rack. Makes two dozen cookies. 4
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Name: ...................................................................................................... Age: .............. Phone: .............................................................................. Address:.................................................................................................... City: .. ............ ........... Email: .................................................................... Contest Sponsored By: Peninsula Co-op
CHRISTMAS COLORING CONTEST RULES Prizes awarded as listed in each age category! Be sure to include your name, age, address and phone number on your entry! 1. Contest open to children ages 3-12. Only one picture may be submitted by each child. 2. Pictures may be colored using crayons, markers or colored pencils. One winner from each age group (3-5, 6-8 and 9-12) will be awarded prizes. Decision of judges are final. 3. All submissions become property of Peninsula Co-op and Goldstream News Gazette and may be published by Goldstream News Gazette in print and online. 4. All entries must be received by 5 p.m. on Dec 15th hand-delivered to Peninsula Co-op locations listed on entry form 5. Winners will be notified by phone by December 18, 2017.
Four fun crafts to keep kids occupied Here are a few holiday-themed crafts to help you keep the kids entertained through the holidays.
EASY SNOWMEN ORNAMENTS This craft is perfect for those between the ages of two and five or can be a great group activity. You’ll need: Clear plastic ornaments with removable lid, cotton balls, googly eyes, orange craft foam or felt (nose), colourful felt or fabric (scarf), black paper and hole punch (for mouth), glue or low-heat glue gun, ribbon or thread for hanging. To start, fluff cotton balls and “stuff” ornaments until full. If your child is having trouble, they can use a pencil or the handle of a paint brush to push cotton balls into the ornament. When the ornaments are full, push the lids back on. Let the kids be creative and “create” their own faces. Once they’re happy with their creation, attach the features with glue. (Recipe via Happy Hooligans - happyhooligans.ca/snowman-ornament-toddlers-preschoolers)
BIRDSEED ORNAMENTS If you’re looking for a way to make the exterior of your home feel a little more festive, this easy craft is a great one for the kids and the birds. You’ll need: four cups birdseed, 3/4 cup flour, 1/2 cup water, one envelope unflavoured gelatin, three tablespoons corn syrup, one pound of lard, cookie cutters, cookie sheet, parchment paper, cooking spray, two straws, and twine. In a large bowl mix flour, water, corn syrup and gelatin to form a smooth paste. Add birdseed and mix until it’s fully coated. Melt the lard and add it to the mixture. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper and coat cookie cutters with spray. Fill each cutter with the birdseed mixture and press down firmly until mixture is packed as tightly as possible. Cut straws into three-inch 6
segments and press into the top area of the cutter (this creates a hole to attach a string for hanging). Leave the straw in and allow the ornaments to dry for three to four hours. Carefully remove the straw and let harden overnight in the freezer. Once frozen, hang outside for the birds to enjoy. (Recipe via eHow - ehow.com)
and cut the toe and heel off so you are just left with the middle tube. But don’t throw these piece away. Pull the middle section over your snowman’s belly. If you want to make a traditional snowman with three sections, use the twine to separate the snowman’s body by tying it around the bottom of the “sweater.” Use another piece to tie a bow at the top of the sweater to create a head. For the snowman’s hat, use the toe of the patterned sock and tie a little bow at the end to create a small ball – this will make it look like a toque. Glue buttons or felt to the sock to create a face. (Recipe via Anne Marie – ciao-mama. com/sock-snowmen)
Birdseed ornaments are a great activity to keep kids occupied. (ISTOCK)
SOCK SNOWMEN Since our chances of a white Christmas are relatively slim, make these chubby sock snowmen for the inside of your home. You’ll need: one pair of calf-length white tube socks, one pair of patterned socks, rice (or beans, lentils), rubber bands, twine, buttons and or felt (for eyes and nose). Cut the foot and band off of one of the plain socks. Turn the tube inside out and close one end tightly with a rubber band. Then turn it right side out and begin filling it with rice. You can over stuff the sock for a chubbier snowman but leave a little room at the top. Once finished, close the open end with a rubber band. Take one of the patterned socks
While it’s not a Christmas-themed activity, slime is quickly becoming a favourite “experiment” for youngsters of all ages. Here’s a worry-free recipe that’s recommended for children aged three and up. You’ll need: 1/2 tablespoon baking soda, one tablespoon contact solution (the type you clean soft contact lenses with), four fluid ounces of white school glue, food colouring of your choice. Find a medium-sized bowl, cup or plate to mix your slime in and pour the entire four ounces of glue into the bowl. Add the baking soda and mix well. After mixing add a few drops of the food colouring of your choice until it’s the desired colour. Add contact solution and mix until slime forms and it begins to get harder to mix. Once it hits this stage, begin kneading with both hands. If needed add another 1/4 tbsp of contact solution to make the slime less sticky. If you’re looking for a fun twist, use one cup of white glue, six drops of brown acrylic paint, 1/2 cup of liquid starch and five spoonfuls of dry dirt to create “mud” slime. Or if you want to make your slime sparkle, use glitter glue instead of regular white glue. (Recipe from Elmer’s glue)
Finding the right rhythm can be hard for blended or recently separated families The holidays should always be about the children Kendra Wong News Gazette staff
The holidays can be a stressful time for families, from wondering what to make for that perfect Christmas meal to finding the best gift. That stress can be made worse for families and children whose parents are separated or divorced. Putting aside arguments and unresolved issues, and remembering that the holidays are about what’s in the best interest of the children can help make the holidays a memorable one, said Val Hemminger of Hemminger Law Group West Shore, which specializes in family law and personal injury. “At Christmas time, it’s often a very high emotional time for families. If a family has recently separated, Christmas can be a very triggering time, so what we want to do as the responsible adults is to try and ensure that that time happens in a child-centred way that doesn’t traumatize the kids,” Hemminger said. “Around holidays, if we [as parents] have a clear understanding of behavioural expectations, that can reduce the question marks of what to do.” Here are a few tips to make the holidays enjoyable for your children: 1. If children are given a special gift or toy, they should be able to take it with them to the other parent’s house, should they choose. “If you focus on the child’s best interest, it actually teaches them that it’s about them and that they have autonomy as well,” Hemminger said. 2. Children should not be on an airplane, bus or car for a long period of time on Christmas Day for the
Val Hemminger specializes in family law and knows just how hard the holidays can be for blended families. She offered a few tips to make the season more enjoyable. (PHOTO CONTRIBUTED) convenience of adults. Instead, focus ly be given to them is ‘both of your on having two Christmases with each parents love you very much, our sepaparent. ration is not your fault and we’re going “Kids aren’t as hung up on Christ- to work it out,’” Hemminger said. mas Day as we are,” Hemminger said. 5. Don’t let children be the messenger “It takes away from that special day between parents. Never let a child carry [when they’re travchild support cheques elling], a day that’s “If a family has recently or notes between parsupposed to be for ents. family and hang- separated, Christmas can be 6. Kids should be ing out and having a very triggering time.” able to celebrate varia good time. It’s ous faith backgrounds – Val Hemminger shifting away from of parents. For examthe best interest of ple, if one parent likes the child and the focus is instead on to go to church and the other doesn’t, the parent.” the child should be allowed to celebrate 3. Children should be allowed to love that parent’s faith. both parents without guilt or disap“It’s better to think that the child has proval. an opportunity to celebrate different 4. If there is a court battle, or parents ways of being. It’s just a different perare in a state of turmoil, children don’t spective,” she said. need to know it. Just allow them to 7. At their request, children should continue being kids, don’t let them be able to contact the other parent take on adult duties or responsibil- and say Merry Christmas or Happy ities. Any discussions about parents Holidays. or court battles should be done away They should also be able to own picfrom a child. tures of parents and have them on their “The message that should consistent- bedside table and vice versa. 7
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Musical keeps PACE with Christmas Give PACE a chance to kick off your holiday season Rick Stiebel News Gazette staff
There’s bound to be a personal Christmas favourite for everyone somewhere in the seasonal mix of song, dance and theatre that come together in Keeping PACE With Christmas. The Sooke School District’s PACE Musical Theatre Academy has gone to great lengths to include a myriad of popular holiday characters and elements in this year’s production, said director Sandy Webster-Worthy, who founded PACE (Program for Academic and Creative Enrichment) more than 30 years ago. The aim was to create an environment where all of the kids are involved in dancing, singing or acting in every production, she explained. “The focus has al-
Some of your favourite holiday characters will be making an appearance again in Keeping PACE With Christmas. (GAZETTE FILE PHOTO) ways been to empower kids to perform so they develop the confidence and gain the experience of being on stage. They learn to work together as a team. A lot of the kids who start in kindergarten stay with PACE all the way through high school.” Webster-Worthy said the enjoyment she gets from working with PACE continues to grow each year, in
part because of the family dynamic that’s a special part of the experience. “We have a very complex team of about 50 parent volunteers,” she noted. “It takes a community to do this. We’ve had parents involved for 20 years as their way to give back to their community.” “This show is Christmas from top top bottom. We have the real deal Santa, the
Grinch, Frosty the Snowman and some of the Muppets Christmas characters, to name a few. There’s a selection of carols, fun songs and comedic Christmas moments and more elaborate and traditional carols as well, guaranteed to launch you right into the Christmas spirit. It’s very fast-paced, and there’s definitely something for everyone.” A personal favourite for Webster-Worthy is a group of kindergarten students singing “All I Want for Christmas is my Two Front Teeth,” and performances that involve some of the parents. The shows take place Dec. 2 at 7 p.m., Dec. 3 at 2 p.m., Dec. 7 and 9 at 7 p.m., and Dec. 10 at 2 p.m. at the Isabelle Reader Theatre, 1026 Goldstream Ave. Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for seniors and students. You can purchase tickets at the Westshore Centre for Learning and Training at 101-814 Goldstream Ave., or call 250-391-9002 to reserve or order by phone.
CHIPS AHOY COOKIE BALLS 1 pkg. (250 g) Philadelphia Cream Cheese, softened 1 pkg. (225 g) Chips Ahoy! Cookies, finely crushed 2 pkg. (8 squares each) Baker’s Semi-Sweet Chocolate Remove 1 tbsp. cookie crumbs. Mix cream cheese and remaining crumbs until well blended. Shape into 1-inch balls. Refrigerate 30 min. Melt chocolate squares as directed on package. Dip balls in chocolate; place on parchment or waxed paper-covered baking sheet. Sprinkle with reserved crumbs. Refrigerate 1 hour or until firm. Makes approx 36 balls. For a change, try Peanut Butter Cookie Balls (using Pirate PB Cookies) / OREO Cookie Balls /Strawberry Cookie Balls (using 350gm. Peek Freans Creme Biscuits). See kraftcanada.com for more receipes. 9
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CONTINUING Happy Holidays REGISTRATION THROUGH TO THE from all of us at END OF SEPTEMBER
Westshore Dance Wishing Everyone Health & Happiness for the Holiday Season
Your community’s Best Source of Child Care Information and Resources
Victoria: 250-382-7000 • Sooke: 250-642-5152 West Shore: 250-391-4324
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The added pressure of the holidays can intensify your relationship with the in-laws. (ISTOCK PHOTO)
Tips for dealing with the in-laws As we much as we love them, there’s just something about the phrase “the in-laws are coming” that makes the little hairs on the back of your neck stand up. Whether it’s a comment on your lifestyle, how you’re raising your kids or just an off-the-cuff remark about your home, sometimes they can just rub you the wrong way. But hey, they’re family right? Here’s a few tips to get you through the holidays without creating a divide that takes a year to recover from. 1. Understand the cause Some of the root problems with this complex relationship can come when you feel challenged in your role with your partner. We all like to think we are the most important person to a spouse (children excluded) and it can be tough when that notion is questioned or a spouse doesn’t stick up for you. This can be especially hard if you feel like your ability to keep a home and family are questioned. It’s important as a parent to be supportive and it’s equally important to have a conversation with your parents or in-laws if you do feel like they are judging you or your spouse. Sometimes they may not understand that a certain statement or observation is taken as a criticism. On the opposite side, it’s also easy to feel stuck between a parent and a spouse – especially if either of them
are a little on the pushy side. Make sure you’re not putting unnecessary pressure on your spouse to choose between you and their parent or parents. TIP: Make sure you and your spouse are sharing the positives with your parents as well. If you only go to them with problems or frustrations they don’t hear about successes or when you make up after a fight. This can create an unhealthy or biased picture of your relationship that’s not good for anyone. 2. Set boundaries Setting clear boundaries can help prevent someone’s feelings from getting hurt and make everyone feel respected. Whether it’s how many sugary snacks a child can have or who will be hosting dinner, establishing these roles or boundaries early on can help family functions run smoothly. If for example, your mother-in-law likes to take over your kitchen when she comes over and that bothers you, you – as a couple – may have to have a conversation with her and explain why it bothers you. That conversation may be as simple as asking her to prepare a salad or dessert for the next meal so she’s still contributing, but doesn’t need to be in the kitchen. It may just be as simple as asking her to put her feet up and relax when she comes over so she doesn’t feel obligated to “help” in the kitchen. Sometimes, you just need
to get someone to step away from a routine they’ve had for years. TIP: Most couples struggle on some level with in-law issues. It does not mean you are in an unhealthy relationship. However, you can’t assume your partner is aware of any frustrations or concerns if you have not vocalized them. 3. Don’t over schedule your time The holidays can be tough as it usually means blending both families’ traditions. This can create some obvious challenges. A lot of families and couples stumble when they try to jam too much into the holiday or schedule every minute of time off. Instead of running to several different locations on Christmas Day so every family tradition from both sides can be observed, try alternating. This works especially well if either side has out-oftown family. By alternating, one year with one side of the family, the next with the other, you create a schedule and don’t have to feel pressured to accommodate everyone all the time. This can also help your in-laws plan their holidays as they know well ahead of time whether you will be joining them or not. TIP: If keeping up with your family’s traditions is feeling overwhelming, then don’t. You can start your own traditions as a family that make everyone happy. 11
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RICE KRISPIE TREES 12 Miniature Reese’s Cups • 1/3 cup M&M Minis 12 candy stars • 3 cup powdered sugar 3 tbsp Milk • 3 tbsp corn syrup Make Green Krispie Treats (on Rice Krispies Box) Butter a your hands and form mixture into cone shapes. Form to shape of trees. Place cones onto prepared pan. Allow to cool and firm up for several hours. Mix powdered sugar, milk and corn syrup in a bowl until smooth. Transfer to piping bag or zippered bag to pipe onto cookies. Pipe like a garland around each tree. Space M&M minis like ornaments onto the garland. Pipe a dab of icing on top of tree to act as glue and attach star. Place a Reese’s upside down on pan. Pipe icing on it and place tree on top.
2017-11-19 7:58 PM
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Don’t become a statistic this Christmas Holiday-related crimes are often those of opportunity Katherine Engqvist News Gazette staff
Only a few days into the month of November police across the province were already reporting holiday-related crimes, specifically gifts being stolen from cars and packages taken from doorsteps. Richard Worth, from Security and Cellular Plus, said there are a few things all residents can do during the holidays to keep their homes and businesses safe. He noted it can be as simple as making sure all windows and doors are locked and that a proper deadbolt is being used. “Those little things, like having well-lit areas keep properties more secure,” he explained, adding motion-sensor lights are a great option for exterior lighting. “Just do things to protect yourself, even if you don’t have an alarm system.” Often, he said, criminals will analyze someone’s home or activities before breaking in. Having gifts or big ticket items visible to someone standing on the street just puts your home on display. “[But] a security systems is a good deterrent,” he said, adding there are lots of different options to fit different needs. Worth explained systems can be as simple as a couple of cameras to contacts on doors and windows that register when they’ve been
There are lots of great security options to protect your home and business that range in prices to fit most budgets. (PIXABAY) opened. But the most popular option of late has been combining camera systems with alarms to provide more complete coverage. It can all link to an app on your phone that allows the owner to control door locks when they’re not home or check to make sure doors have been locked once they’ve left. Different users can be assigned a pin, such as a dog walker or contractor, and the system logs exactly when that pin has been used so you can track who is coming and going. A popular newer feature is the doorbell camera that is often motion activated and allows you to see who is at your door, or who has been there, without opening it. Some even have two-way voice causalities that allow you to have a conversation without having to open the door. A lot of this technology can also be utilized for busi-
nesses and Worth said more look valuable, such as an and more people are opting empty purse or name brand for apps that can allow them sunglass case, or even loose to check their business with- change. Baker added it’s a out being there. He added good practice to get into it’s great for when alarms go now that should be used all off or if you can’t remem- year-round. “It only takes ber whether you’ve locked five seconds to break in.” the door properly. “It’s just When looking at the stathat little peace of mind,” tistics to see if there are any he said. increases in thefts from veWest Shore RCMP Const. hicles and home or business Matthew Baker, break and said locally “They’ll go for the enters on the most of these easiest crime they can West Shore, holiday-relatBaker said ed thefts are get ... Just remove the “the numcrimes of op- temptation.” bers actually portunity. He hold steady noted often a – Const. Matthew Baker during the thief will go year.” through a neighbourhood He noted one factor that checking for unlocked ve- could be limiting an increase hicles, skipping those that in these crimes is the fact are locked. that residents are more “They’ll go for the easiest aware of the potential for crime they can get … Just crime and are taking extra remove the temptation,” he precautions. But, he added, said. “Don’t leave anything these precautions shouldn’t valuable in plain sight.” And just be utilized during the that goes for items that may holidays. 13
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New centres offer play alternatives These new adventures will have your kids spinning in a good way
Kendra Wong News Gazette staff
With the population on the West Shore booming, it’s no surprise that much of that population now includes young families and kids. Keeping your youngsters entertained can sometimes be a challenge, but in the western communities, there’s no shortage of new and fun activities for those of all ages and abilities. For parents looking to bolster their young ones’ imaginations, I Want to Be Play Drop in Play and Sensory Centre at 1610 Island Hwy. in View Royal is a great place to take your kids for an afternoon of fun. Kids between the ages of one to 10 can drop in and play at one of 13 stations, which include a food truck, market, construction site, house, theatre and hospital, as well as a sandbox and mud kitchen. The 3,000-square-foot centre, which officially opened in mid-November, also offers a sensory room and augmented reality box, which is one of the firsts of its kind in B.C. “Kids can go anywhere and it’s up to them what they do,” said owner and Langford resident Jonas Jeque, who operates the business with his wife, Jeannet. The centre also hosts birthday parties, family courses and family disco nights. I Want To Be is open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information visit
The Rising – Victoria Centre for Circus Arts officially opens in Langford on Dec. 17 and offers aerial and acrobatic classes for toddlers aged two years old to adults. (CONTRIBUTED PHOTO) iwanttobe.ca. For children who favour the arts, The Rising – Victoria Centre for Circus Arts offers a unique range of circus-style classes for those who aren’t afraid of heights. Moving from Victoria to the West Shore and officially opening on Dec. 17, the facility offers aerial and acrobatic classes for toddlers aged two years old to adults. There are parent and toddlers classes, while those four years and older will have the chance to work with instructors and learn aerial silk, aerial hoop, lollipop lyra, trapeze, and circus ground-based acrobatic work in the roughly 2,600-square-foot space in Langford. “They’ll get a little taste of what it’s like to join a circus,” said owner Sarah Scheunhage, who grew up in
Langford, but only recently returned to her hometown after several decades of working as a professional aerialist and acrobat around the world. “The circus for me, has always been a really magical place to go to. It’s highly creative, it’s very welcoming. Circus has a lot of the same movement, language and training techniques as
gymnastics, however, it’s not competitive and I think that’s something that really gravitates towards a lot of people; and there’s opportunities to perform.” The Rising Circus also offers circus-themed parties and corporate team building workshops. It is located at 140-1047 Langford Pkwy. For more information visit therisingcircus.com.
Kids try out some of the new toys during the grand opening of the I Want To Be Play Centre in View Royal. (SPENCER PICKLES/BLACK PRESS) 15
Colwood Christmas Light Up Wednesday, December 6 6:00pm - 8:00pm Colwood City Hall
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performances by local choirs & musicians
free hot dogs, hot chocolate & apple fritters
visit with Santa (watch for the Fire Truck!)
crafts for kids to make and take Donations gratefully accepted for Christmas Backpack Project & Royal Bay Secondary Schoolâ€™s 10,000 Tonight Food Drive Hot Dogs courtesy of:
Hot Chocolate courtesy of:
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Crafts & Volunteers courtesy of:
3000 sqft indoor Village of Kidogo Birthday Parties Sensory Room Family Disco Nights
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1610 Island Hwy, View Royal
Child care alternatives for the holidays While schools and a lot of daycare options close for the holidays, not all businesses do
The holidays can be a stressful time for parents, espcially if they’re scrambling to find childcare alternatives. Here are a few options that cater to a wide range of interests. The West Shore Parks and Recreation Society hosts a number of winter camps for kindergarten-aged children as well as kids in Grades 1 through 6. One option is the winter break camp, which includes time for crafts, games, swimming, skating and more. The program is also fully licensed so you don’t have to worry about leaving your child. For this camp, kids are
West Shore Parks and Recreation offers a number of child care options all year long, including during the winter break. (PHOTO COURTESY OF WEST SHORE PARKS AND RECREATION) asked to bring a lunch, swimsuit and towel, skates, helmet and dress for outside activity. The camp runs from Dec. 27 to 29 and from Jan. 2 to 5, from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and the cost is $38 per day. If your child prefers more arts and crafts, the aspiring young artist winter camp explores a variety of skills and participants will create winter-themed artwork. Artists will also spend time
outdoors each day engaged in active play. This camp runs from Jan. 2 to 5 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The cost is $140. For more information, check out the West Shore Parks and Recreation Activity Guide. Westshore Basketball will also host their sixth annual Christmas break camp from Jan. 2 to 5 at Belmont Secondary School. There are three options
including a full day program from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. ($150), half day from 9 a.m. to noon ($100) or a half day option from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. The camps are open to boys and girls in Grades 4 to 8. And any players registered with Westshore Basketball teams or clubs will also receive a 50 per cent discount. You can register online by visiting westshorebasketball.com
FIVE INGREDIENT DOUBLE CHOCOLATE PEPPERMINT COOKIES • 1 box devil's food chocolate cake mix • 1/2 cup (1 stick) room temperature butter • 2 eggs • 2/3 cup milk chocolate chips, divided • 1/2 cup peppermint bits, divided Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Stir together cake mix, butter and eggs until combined. Stir in ½ cup chocolate chips and ¼ peppermint bits. Using a cookie scoop, divide dough onto baking sheets. Top with remaining chocolate chips and peppermint bits, if desired. Bake at 350 degrees for about 13 to 15 minutes or until cookies are puffy and no longer glossy. Cool for a few minutes on the baking sheets before transferring to cooling racks. Makes approx 24 cookies. 17
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Holiday gift wrapping tips and tricks Streamline your process to avoid the hassle
Checking off all of the items on your holiday shopping list is a great feeling. But sitting down to wrap all those parcels can be a bit daunting. While some find it relaxing and a chance to embrace their artistic side, others find wrapping gift after gift a bit tedious. Whichever side you land on, here are a few tips to help streamline the process and make the task more enjoyable – or at the very least tolerable. When it comes time to start, there’s nothing more frustrating than having to hunt for tape, scissors, ribbons and other supplies while mid-present. Make sure you have all the supplies you’ll need within reach before you sit down. You can even set up a temporary table or TV tray near where you are working to contain all of the tags, bags, tape and more, so it doesn’t get in your way. With that in mind, it’s also important to choose the right location to set up shop. A large, flat, sturdy surface – such as a dinning room table – is preferable to wrap parcels on. Avoid wrapping on surfaces such as carpet or rugs as they can give gift wrap a wrinkled look and can increase the amount of time needed to wrap. Those surfaces also make it easier to accidentally tear or rip gift wrap. Wrapping a square or rectangular object is the easiest
Gift wrapping can be a hassle or a fun way to express your creativity. Either way, these tips can help make the task more enjoyable. (PHOTO CREDIT) way to start. If you’ve mastered this but start to falter when it comes to oddly shaped items, try placing them into plain boxes before wrapping. Gift bags are also a great alternative for these types of gifts and can be a great time saver if you’re in a hurry. According to the National Retail Federation, the average consumer spends roughly $800 on holiday-related purchases. That means there’s a lot of gift wrap that can be required, which can also add to that total. A great cost-effective option is wrapping gifts in clean plain paper which can be customized with personalized sketches, stamps or a fancy bow. You can also tie these packages with twine and a sprig of evergreen to give parcels a rustic look. Black Press sells what are
referred to as “roll ends” which are last section of the large paper rolls that all of Black Press’ publications, including the Goldstream News Gazette, are printed on. These rolls are only available at the press in Saanich, 200-770 Enterprise Cres., but are a great cost-effective alternative to traditional gift wrap. Just call ahead to make sure there are some in stock 250-727-2460. Alternatively, if you think gift wrap is wasteful you can repurpose other materials into beautiful gift wrap that can be used again and again. A square of leftover fabric, for example, or a piece of an old t-shirt or sweater can be transformed into a piece of art housing a present. Fabric bends and moves which makes it more forgiving when wrapping and you can
gather the ends and tie them into a bow as a way to skip using tape altogether as well. Where a lot of people stumble is labeling parcels while wrapping. Try wrapping each recipient’s gifts in a different colour or style. That way you don’t have to tag each parcel. Just make sure you jot down a key so you can decode this colour system when it’s time to unwrap. But wrapping presents doesn’t have to be a chore. If you’re really short on time or don’t want to deal with the added stress, a lot of local businesses offer gift wrapping in-store for a small fee. A number of organizations will also be in local shopping centres wrapping gifts by donation. This is a great option and you can support a good cause while you’re at it. 19
Spread some holiday spirit
with gift ideas for him and her
Can’t decide what to buy your significant other? It’s a question many are stumped with come Christmas time but here are some ideas that could help make gift shopping a little easier. Olympic View Golf Club For the golfer in your life, why not give them a gift card (which can be delivered electronically, through Canada Post or of course, the traditional way) for pre-purchased rounds of golf. A loyalty game pack includes five rounds at Olympic View as well as five rounds at Arbutus Ridge for $269. You can also purchase five rounds at Olympic View for $199 or five rounds at Arbutus Ridge for $135. Limited quantities are available. If you’re shopping for a golfer who plays every chance they can, you can also purchase the unlimited golf value pass for $650. For more information call 250-474-3673 or go to golfbc.com/ courses/olympic_view. Mr. Mikes Steakhouse For the foodie in your life, how about a gift card to the recently opened Mr. Mikes in Langford? You can pick up a gift card in the restaurant and load it with any dollar amount you choose. If you prefer to send an instant electronic gift card instead, all you have to do is visit mrmikes.ca and click on the gift card section. You can also check balances online by hitting the “check your bal-
1. Bamboo Firming Fluid by Eminence Organics 2. Silver Shine Shampoo for blonde hair by Milkshake USA 3. Facial Products Starter Set by Eminence Organics 4. Incredible Oil by Milkshake USA 5. Hot Tool - curling iron or hair straightener Of course you can also opt for a gift card if you’re not sure what that special someone would like. If you spend $100 at Christmas time, you will also receive a $15 credit to use on yourself. Windsor Plywood Besides tools and gadgets, Windsor Plywood (888 Van Isle Way) sells a lot of exotic hardwoods at this time of year for people making nick knacks or for other projects. The exotic hardwoods come from numerous different countries around the world and come in a wide range of colours and grains. Love Den The Love Den (735 Goldstream Ave.) has quite a few gift options available for those looking for something more intimate. Lingerie and massage oils are a few of the most popular items for the holiday season and they even have Christmas-themed lingerie and hats. You can reach the Love Den by calling 250383-1269. Coast Collective Art Centre Do you have an art lover in the fam-
West Shore-based businesses have a wide range of products that are sure to please just about everyone on your shopping list, including some hand-crafted options. (Pixabay) ance” button. Sante Spa Victoria If you know exactly what your partner may want from Sante Spa for Christmas you can book a service for them online or by calling the spa directly. There are of course also couples treatments available. If you would like to grab a gift card, you can do so online as well. You can choose the denomination and gift card design and send it to the recipient via
email or you can print the gift and give it yourself. Sante Spa is located at 1999 Country Club Way. You can also contact them by calling 250-391-3920 or visit santespavictoria.com. BelleRose Salon and Wax Bar Anything to do with hair or nails is always a great gift idea. BelleRose in Langford (106-2778 Peatt Rd.) gave us their top five most popular items for gifts.
• 1/2 cup butter • 1/2 cup milk Bring to a boil, then remove and add; • 3 cups dry oats • 1 cup coconut • 6 tbsp cocoa • 1 tsp vanilla extract Mix, then drop by the spoonfull onto tin foil and let cool.
prints and prints on canvas, and you can also purchase registrations for upcoming art classes. Baja Rosi’s Baja Rosi’s (103-797 Goldstream Ave.) carries a wide selection of items from clothes to shoes to purses and accessories. During this time of year, accessories and “statement” pieces are hot sellers. If you don’t find exactly what you’re looking for, you can always pick up a gift certificate and whoever is receiving the gift can pick out exactly what they want. Curvalicious Boutique Curvalicious Boutique is another great option if clothing is on your shopping list. New this year, they carry a Canadian-designed and Canadian-made clothing line named “Preloved.” The company just launched plus sizes this fall and Curvalicious is the first to carry the designer on the Island. They also carry Sleevey Wonders, Nygard Slims, Thigh Society underwear (also Canadian), Svelte Leggings (Canadian), cycling shorts and shaper tanks. Coquette Lingerie is also available up to 4X.
NO-BAKE HAYSTACK COOKIES When it comes to the holidays I never feel that I have enough time to bake. With a full time career, running kids back and forth to school and sports and my holiday shopping, decorating and cleaning, I have very limited time. This is my go-to recipe for the holidays as it is easy, fast and yummy. No-Bake Haystack Cookies • 2 cups sugar
ily? Coast Collective (318 Wale Rd.) has numerous gift options and ideas to help find the perfect gift for the artist in your life. If you’re looking for something to decorate with or commemorate the season, they have a selection of Christmas tree ornaments made from dried gourds ($18 to $25) in the shapes of snowmen, angels, and round Christmas baubles; ornaments made from fused glass ($9 to $25); and felted and sewn critter ornaments in fanciful outfits ($25 to $45). Of course, you usually can’t go wrong with jewellery, and they have a number of pieces in a range of price points that include colourful and lightweight polymer clay to upcycled sea glass to hammered copper to sterling silver with dichroic glass ($20 to $200). There’s lots of pottery to choose from including mugs, vases, bowls, trays, and teabag holders (prices vary by item, but many are under $50). There’s even translucent pottery with soy candles inside ($25 to $30). If that doesn’t strike your fancy, there’s also wood-turned bowls and plates, scarves and toques (hand-knit and hand-woven), stuffed animals made from upcycled sweaters ($45), paintings of all sizes and mediums at various price points (with many small originals priced under $100), matted
• 1 cup butter • 2 cups flour • 4 tbsp icing sugar (heaping) • 2 tbsp cornstarch (medium) • 1 tbsp rice flour (level)
- Michelle Cabana, publisher Goldstream News Gazette
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix ingredients as listed. Roll dough out onto a floured surface to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into desired shapes and place on a greased cookie sheet approximately one inch apart, bake until golden brown.
Janine, Westshore Dance
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. • 1 cup unsalted butter, room Beat butter, powdered sugar, temperature lemon juice, lemon extract, and • 1/2 cup powdered sugar salt until smooth, then stir in • 1 tsp lemon juice lemon zest. Add the flour and • 1/4 tsp lemon extract, optional mix until a stiff dough forms. If • 1/2 tsp salt you’re using a stand mixer, this • 2 tsp lemon zest will just take a minute or so. If • 2 1/4 cups flour you’re using a hand mixer it will • 1-2 cups powdered sugar + 2 tsp take much longer. Scoop tablespoon sized cookies lemon zest, for rolling onto your cookie sheet. These don’t spread so you can crowd them a bit, leaving about 1-2” between cookies. Bake for 8-12 minutes, rotating pans halfway Langford City Hall Building through MBERTON #317 – 877 Goldstream Avenue, baking, until LAW CORP Victoria, BC V9B 2X8 the cookies T 250-391-7777 F 250-474-0802 Barrister, Solicitor & Notary Public
LEMON SNOWBALL COOKIES
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are no longer wet looking. Cool 10 minutes before rolling in powdered sugar. Stir powdered sugar and lemon zest together in a bowl. Roll cookies to coat. If desired, do a second roll once they’re completely cool, so they’re perfectly white. Store cookies in an airtight container for up to 3 days or freeze for up to one month.
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Convoy set to dazzle thousands Nineteenth annual event takes place Saturday, Dec. 2 Kendra Wong News Gazette staff
Trucks covered in thousands of multi-coloured Christmas lights and decorations will dazzle residents young and old throughout Greater Victoria next month. As part of the 19th annual Island Equipment Owners Association’s Truck Light Convoy, which kicks off on Saturday, Dec. 2., roughly 80 truck will begin at Ogden Point at 5:45 p.m. and, with the help of a police escort, wind through Victoria, Colwood and Langford, before ending at Western Speedway at around 8:30 p.m. The trucks then park and the public is invited to enjoy a hot dog, hot chocolate and see the trucks up close. New this year, residents will be able to track the convoy’s progress online. The Q radio station will also be giving updates on how close the convoy is to your area. “I just get tingles. It’s just such an amazing cause, it’s just such an amazing event,” association manager Wendy Watt said. “The hours that the truck drivers and all the equipment owners put in to do this is just amazing and it’s all just out of the generosity of their own heart … it takes hours and thousands of lights.” Langford resident Alexis Wood, 8, checks out a minion on the Royal Canadian Coast Guard’s Christmas decorated miniature of the Wilfred P. Laurier vessel at Western Speedway last year. (GAZETTE FILE PHOTO)
Commercial trucks sit parked in the infield and on the track at Western Speedway after completing last year’s event. The 19th annual Truck Light Convoy takes place on Saturday, Dec. 2, beginning at Ogden Point at 5:45 p.m., before winding through Victoria, Saanich and the West Shore and ending at Western Speedway around 8:30 p.m. (GAZETTE FILE PHOTO) In addition to the convoy, the event is a fundraiser for various food banks in the Capital Region. While residents cannot hand food to drivers during the event, there will be a number of drop off locations set up throughout the various municipalities. A number of local groups, businesses and firefighters will be collecting donations the night of the event. Some include View Royal Fire Rescue collecting at Helmcken Road and Watkiss Way, Colwood Fire Rescue at Juan de Fuca Recreation Centre and Sands Funeral Home, Thrifty Foods
in Colwood, Langford Fire Rescue at the corner of Verterans Memorial Parkway and Goldstream Avenue and Millstream Village. More drop off locations will be released about two weeks before the event. Donations benefit a number of food banks including the Goldstream Food Bank, James Bay Community Kitchen, Mustard Seed, and Salvation Army. Over the years, the association has donated more than 154,000 pounds of food. “We just want to create awareness in the community of how important it is [to donate] any time of the year, but Christmas and the winter time especially,” said Watt, noting many residents will set up their chairs along the 35-kilometre route around 3 p.m. the day of to ensure they get the best view possible. “I’m just really proud of the association and all that they’ve accomplished over the years in giving back to the community where we all do work and play.” For more information, food drop off locations and to track the convoy’s progress on Dec. 2, visit ieoa.ca. 23
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Treat your four-legged family members Items your pets will love all year
Sometimes the hardest family member to shop for is the four-legged kind. Tina Draker from Island Pet Source in Langford recommended five of the top animal toys for the 2017 holiday season. 1. Treat dispensers Included in this category are “intelligent toys” such as Paw Hide. The puzzle pictured is hide and seek with seven ways for your dog to win treats. “A lot of people will put bits of their [dog’s] food in and that is how they feed them for dogs that eat too fast,” she said. “The concept behind it is that they have to work at it.” 2. The snuffle mat This is a great invention that helps keep your home a little cleaner during the winter months and it’s one your canine friend is sure to enjoy. “I use it in the winter instead of my dog having a raw bone or something she would be outside with, she gets the snuffle mat and I take approximately a third of a cup
of kibble – a different kibble than she normally gets – and we tuck in all her pieces and she snuffles through,” Draker said. “It’s also machine washable.” The snuffle mat retails for about $70. 3. A new bed What dog doesn’t like a new fluffy bed to curl up on? Island Pet Source has numerous options available to choose from including orthopedic beds, soft and cozy beds and beds made of recycled materials. “A new bed for Christmas is never a bad thing,” Draker added. “There are just so many types
of beds now available.” 4. The Jolly Ball These bright colour soccer ball-style toys are designed to retain shape and texture even after your pup sinks their teeth into it. There are two different sizes including an eight inch and six inch. The eight inch runs for $27.99 while the six inch goes for $19.99.
5. Nylabones These toys aren’t for every dog but if you have a dog that loves to chew, this is the gift for them this year. “Some smell/ taste like bacon and other flavours,” she said. “Their products are also guranteed as well so if your dog doesn’t like it or they go through it fast.” These run in the $20 price range.
SWEET POTATO SWEETHEARTS (FOR DOGS) • 1 cup boiled mashed sweet potato (can substitute with pumpkin or butternut squash) • 1 1/2 cup uncooked oatmeal • 1/4 cup dried cranberries • 1 tsp nutritional yeast • 1 tbsp honey Preheat oven to 370 F and butter a large cookie sheet. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix very well. Scoop small balls (1 tsp size) on cookie sheet approx 1 inch apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Allow to cool and serve as a yummy treat or on top of your dog’s regular meal! Courtesy of Island Pet Source
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DECEMBER EVENTS DEC. 2 ~ Christmas Light Up, Craft Fair and Island Equipment Owners Association Big Truck Parade at Veterans Park from 5 to 7:45pm. Santa arrives at 6pm, Official Light up at 7pm and Parade passes by at approximately 8pm. FREE hot dogs, hot chocolate and coffee while supplies last. www.cityoflangford.ca DEC. 15-17 ~ Christmas Lights Trolley Tours leave City Centre Park at 6:15pm and 7:15pm, by donation to Goldstream Food Bank
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More info on these events at www.citycentrepark.ca
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On behalf of Langford Council and our residents, I would like to wish everyone a very merry Christmas and a safe and happy Holiday season. May the New Year be filled with peace, joy and prosperity for everyone in our community and throughout the Capital Region. Mayor Stew Young
Thank you to the GOLDSTREAM LODGE FREEMASONS for the use of their tree.
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Canada 150 Skate Day - Sunday December 10th 3:00PM - 5:00PM FREE EVENT - at Westhills Arena New Years Eve at City Centre Park & Langford Lanes - December 31st Family Event at Playzone 7:30PM - Countdown at 10:30PM New Years Bowling - All you can bowl for $15.00 9:00PM - 1:00PM
For more information visit: www.citycentrepark.ca
City Centre Park
Live the Lifestyle
Alternative gift ideas for West Shore kids If you’re looking for an alterative to buying more toys, here are some gift ideas that will get your kids moving. Victoria Gymnastics has numerous class options ranging from parent and tots to those 18 years and older. Most class options are available during mornings and evenings so there are flexible options for all schedules. Prices range anywhere from $55 per month to $150 depending on how many classes are taken per week. You can register online by visiting victoriagymnastics. com or calling 778-2656414. If you’re looking for some outdoor adventure, WildPlay (15-1767 Island Hwy.) isn’t for the faint of heart. It features 11 zip lines, 60 aerial games and a 40 foot jump. While it is closed for
Oak Bay resident Emma Whitten, 17, faces her fears and braves the WTF (what’s to fear) Jump at Wildplay in Colwood. (GAZETTE FILE PHOTO) the season, once they do reopen, kids of all ages will have a great time feeling the adrenaline rush. WildPlay has 2018 season passes for a limited early bird rate of $149 ($50 dollars in savings). The park
also offers a triple-play deal which includes three popular elements for $54.99. Away from the ropes, Acrobatics is a fun way to keep children active and engaged in a new activity. The Rising recently moved
to their new West Shore facility and will be hosting its grand opening event on Dec. 17. You can drop by for that event to learn more about the programs offered and see if you can peak your child’s interest. With classes ranging for those 18 months to three years, all the way up to those 18 and older, there’s something for everyone. Some options include silk, hoop, static trapeze and acrobatics. The school will be closed from Dec. 18 to January for the holiday break but that doesn’t mean you can’t use their classes as a gift idea. Prices and a full schedule for 2018 are expected to be released in the coming weeks. In the meantime, for more information call 250857-1785 or email email@example.com.
EASY SUGAR COOKIES • 1 cup butter or margarine • 1 large egg • 1 tsp vanilla extract • 1 cup sugar • 2 3⁄4 cups flour • 2 tsp baking powder Cream butter and sugar. Add egg and vanilla. Mix all dry ingredients and add slowly to butter cream mixture until incorporated. Roll out on lightly floured board to desired thickness. Cutout 2-1/2” hearts and bake at 400 degrees for 7- 10 minutes. Should be light in color with light browning on the edges.
SUGAR COOKIE ICING • 1 cup powdered sugar • 2 tsp milk • 2 tsp light corn syrup • food coloring • 1⁄4 tsp vanilla extract or 1⁄4 tsp almond extract DIRECTIONS: Stir the powdered sugar and the milk until smooth. Beat in corn syrup and vanilla until icing is smooth and glossy. If it’s too thick, add more corn syrup. Divide icing into separate bowls and stir in food coloring as desired. You can dip the cookies, paint them with a paint brush or spread them using a knife or the back of a spoon. 27
I’ll Be Home For Christmas
Wishing you peace and joy this holiday season! Happy Holidays from our team at
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What does Christmas mean to you?
“Family – that’s the big thing for me is just spending the time we have together, having a good meal, watching Christmas movies and cuddling on the couch.” – Bella Bouchard
“It’s about family and get- “Family, food and spending ting everyone together and time with my kids and husenjoy the holidays with band.” - Stacey Vrebosch everyone.” - Nick Schmidt
“It’s not about the idea that everyone pictures it is. It’s about family to me.” - Jasmine Totzke
“For us, it’s about family more than anything. Normally, that’s when we would go to see our families and gingerbread houses.” - Nicole Cardinal and Aaron Jones
TRADITIONAL TOURTIERE (FRENCH-CANADIAN MEAT PIE) Pie Pastry (makes 2 double crusted 9-inch pies) Combine in large bowl and place in fridge: 1928 g all purpose flour, 50g sugar, and 7g salt. In separate container, combine and place in fridge: ¼ cup lemon juice and 2 1/2 cup cold water. In a third container, cube 1205g of unsalted butter and place in freezer. Process by hand with pastry cutter or in food processor, cubed butter and flour mixture in bowl, until butter is the size of small peas. Gradually add water mixture until dough just comes together. The key is not to over mix the dough and it will appear crumbly at first. Divide dough into two. Wrap and refrigerate to rest for at least 1 hour. Make the filling in the meantime… Traditional Meat Filling: 2 Tbsp butter 1Tbsp oil 1 large white or yellow cooking onion, diced (roughly 2 cups) 4 cloves of garlic, minced 1 lb lean ground pork 1 lb lean ground beef ½ cup chicken stock 1 tsp salt ½ tsp ground pepper ½ tsp ground allspice
¼ tsp ground clove ¼ tsp ground cinnamon ¼ tsp ground nutmeg 1 cup yukon or yellow potato, peeled and cut into small cubes. In a large heavy frying pan, heat butter and oil, over medium low heat. Add onions and garlic, sauté until onions are translucent. Add pork and beef, cook until there is no pink, using a wooden spoon or fork to break up large clumps. Stir in stock, salt, pepper and spices and potato. Reduce heat to low and cook until potato is tender, about 30 minutes. Cool meat mixture slightly. Preheat oven to 425F. Meanwhile, roll out pastry onto floured surface. Line two 9” pie pans with ¼” thick pastry (use one half of dough for 2 pies) Keep any trimings and add to other half of dough. Fill both pies with meat mixture. Using the other half of dough, roll out two more 9” circles to cover pies. Crimp edges, using a fork or your fingers. Cut in centre a couple of slits or alternatively using a cookie cutter (a star, heart, circle, etc) You may also use up any pieces of leftover pastry and arrange on top (some decorative leaves or shapes) *At this point you can freeze the pie.
You can bake the pies from frozen, adding 10 to 20 minutes of baking time. Combine one egg yolk and 2 tbsp light cream and brush over top of the crusts. Bake pies for 20 min. then dropping the oven temperature to 350F and continue to cook for another 20 to 30 min. until pastry is crisp, cooked thorough and lightly browned. Serve hot with your favourite artisan ketchup, relish or steak sauce. For an even more traditional tourtière, replace potatoes with ¾ cup old fashioned rolled oats. The pastry recipe is versatile for any pie, sweet or savoury. Meat pies are also an easy way to use up leftover meats, from the holidays: Replace cooked turkey for ground meats, add peas, carrots to the onions. Switch the spices to traditional turkey seasonings: sage, savoury and thyme. Add leftover turkey gravy and use up any leftover yams or potato (instead of adding raw potato and chicken stock). One thing I always crave around this time of year, are my grandmothers’ tourtières. Before it gets too crazy, I like to make a few ahead and freeze them. making it an easy meal to enjoy during the holidays with a little less stress. – Sheena Lind, Country Rose 29
Warmest Holiday Wishes from everyone at Royal Roads University.
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Keep your family safe this season Keep holiday traditions from turning into disasters Katherine Engqvist News Gazette staff
The holidays can be a beautiful time of year, with the soft glow of twinkling lights near a roaring fire while the smell from fresh baking fills the room. But the combination of holiday decor and traditions can have devastating results. Langford Fire Chief Chris Aubrey offered some advice for West Shore resident to help prevent holiday disasters from occurring. “Cooking is the number one cause of house fires,” Aubrey said, regardless what time of year it is. But since the holidays can be hectic, with lots of baking or cooking, it’s easy to become distracted while something’s on the stove or in the oven. While Aubrey said he didn’t want to discourage anyone from these great holiday traditions, he noted “we want to make sure people are safe while doing that.” Although he said they are seeing fewer fires directly related to Christmas, there is always that risk associated with decorations as well as cooking. “Never leave a candle unattended … I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been to a fire where someone lit a candle and walked away and came back to the entire room on fire,” Aubrey said.
A lot of holiday traditions come with some added risk but Langford Fire Chief Chris Aubrey offered some tips to help keep your family safe this Christmas. (PIXABAY) “They’re beautiful and often come with beautiful scents that make your house smell nice but we do have to treat them with respect.” If you are burning candles, he suggested avoiding long, tapered varieties and instead opt for something with a thick, sturdy base. He added it’s also important to make sure candles are contained in a non-combustible container, that way as they burn down they continue to be protected by the container. The holidays are also a great time to speak with your kids about fire safety and candles. And while Aubrey joked firefighters are fortunate that the majority of residents are no longer using candles on live Christmas tree, there are still some concerns that come along with bringing a tree inside your home. “You just have to make sure they’re well watered,” he explained. While it may
originally be a safe distance from a heat source such as a fireplace, “as the tree dries out the threshold gets less and less … [and] now it’s
“Cooking is the number one cause of house fires.” – Langford Fire Chief Chris Aubrey too close.” Besides making sure trees are a safe distance from heat, it’s also important to check the wiring of all lights – including your outdoor strands. If any wires are frayed, split or shorting out, Aubrey noted they need to be disposed of. He added it’s also important to “limit the use of powerbars and extension cords so they’re not overloading your house.” If you have guests or family members staying with you during the season, make
sure they know all of the emergency exits and where any fire extinguishers and alarms are placed. Caring for the outside of your home can be just as important in the event of a disaster. Make sure all driveways and walkways are clear of leaves, debris, ice or snow. This provides easy access to your home for you and anyone visiting, including first responders. If you need to be on a ladder or your roof in the coming weeks, Aubrey suggested waiting for a clear day that’s not icy to tackle outside jobs such as clearing gutters and hanging Christmas lights. He added you can utilize a break in the weather now when it’s safer to hang lights but don’t have to turn them on until later in the season. “Just take precautions when putting the lights up,” he said, adding it’s also important to make sure someone is home and holding the ladder. 31
Wrangle the waste after the holidays As the holiday season comes to an end there’s no denying the amount of recycling that seems to accumulate. Whether its gift wrapping, cardboard boxes or just food containers, the blue bins seem to be overflowing by the time the end of December rolls around. The Capital Regional District’s blue box recycling program provides curbside pickup to more than 121,000 homes in the region. To participate residents must have their recyclables at the curb before 7:30 a.m. on collection day and items must be in at least one CRD blue box or bag to indicate to the truck drivers the materials are intended for pickup. It’s important to remember that all items accepted in this program are banned from residential garbage. There is also no limit to the amount of recyclables you may place at the curb, which means you don’t have to feel shy about stacking additional bins at the curb in December or January. Just make sure all the items are
Residents caught by a driver placing inappropriate materials in their blue bins will have their recycling left at their curb. (FILE PHOTO) permitted and secured so they won’t blow away during windy conditions. If winter weather makes conditions unsafe for pickup, the CRD asks residents to hold onto recyclables until the next collection date. When you’re putting up or putting away those holiday decorations, don’t forget a number of items (including strings of lights or small appliances) that are not permitted in blue bins can be recycled free of charge at a number of locations across
the region. For a full list go to myrecyclopedia.ca to find the location nearest you and what’s accepted. Some items that are not permitted in blue bins include: hardcover or paperback books, non-paper gift wrap (foil), ribbon or bows, musical greeting cards with batteries, rubber bands, padded envelopes, plastic bags, cardboard boxes with wax coating, paper towels (these can be composted), tissues, juice cartons (return for refund), containers for motor oil or antifreeze, packaging
FOUR-INGREDIENT FUDGE CRINKLES 1 (18 1/4 ounce) box devil’s food cake mix (Betty Crocker Super Moist suggested) 1⁄2 cup vegetable oil •2 large eggs Confectioners’ sugar or granulated sugar, for rolling DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven to 350°. Stir (by hand) dry cake mix, oil and eggs in a large bowl until dough forms. Dust hands with confectioners’ sugar and shape dough into 1” balls. Roll balls in confectioners’ sugar and place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until center is just set. Remove from pans after a minute or so and cool on wire racks. 32
labeled as biodegradable or compostable, shrink wrap, plastic blister packs, ceramic plant pots, spray paint cans, chip or snack bags, and metal toys. As a way to help protect yourself from identity theft, the CRD recommends shredding or tearing apart all papers containing personal information prior to placing it at the curb. You can also use a dark marker to cover up your personal information. Place shredded materials in a sealed or stapled paper bag, cereal box or other non-corrugated paper product inside your blue bag. Another tip is to place recyclables at the curb as close as possible to 7:30 a.m. on your collection day. This helps reduce the chances of someone going through your box – and helps prevent items from blowing away. For more information or to find your pickup schedule, go to bit.ly/2mkKX8p. You can also download an app so you never miss a pickup again.
How to clean your home in a hurry Save some time by only tackling the necessities
The holidays can be a chaotic time to say the least and that often means skipping some of your regular routine. Unfortunately, one of the first things to go is often your cleaning schedule and that can be challenging with all of the unexpected guests that pop by this month. Here are a few tips to help you get through the holidays with a clean home on a tight schedule. If you do have time to clean your home thoroughly, start from the top. Give your ceilings, light fixtures and any moldings a quick dust before moving down the walls to other surfaces such as picture frames, tables or chairs. This will allow the dust to settle in the right direction. TIP: You can hide dirty windows by closing curtains. This will also help draw attention to focal points in a room, such as a fireplace. Clear clutter from common areas – such as living rooms – and fluff pillows. This task should take about 10 minutes and will give your home a more pulled together look. Wipe down sinks and counter tops in your bathrooms and kitchen. You can hide a dirty tub with a shower curtain but you can’t hide a dirty sink. That goes for a dirty toilet bowl as
The holidays can be stressful but getting everyone involved in the cleaning process can help alleviate some of that pressure. (HUEPHOTOGRAPHY/ISTOCK) well. Giving these surfaces a quick wipe when you have a few free moments will give the impression the room is cleaner than it is. It can be challenging but making sure the dishwasher is always empty and ready to accept dirty dishes means they won’t be piling up somewhere visible. Emptying the dishwasher is a great task for the kids to help with too. TIP: Set a large bowl of vinegar on the top rack of your dishwasher and run it through a high-heat cycle. This will help rid any lingering odors and clean the inside of your dishwasher. While you can hide dirty dishes, you cannot hide most dirty floors. Giving main
rooms a quick sweep or if you have time a full vacuum will help make your home look cleaner. If you don’t have time to do the entire house, focus on the kitchen and living room. If you are planning to host a dinner or another big event, take a few minutes to take out the trash and recycling bins so they are empty and ready to go. Replace towels with fresh ones and make sure all bathrooms and the kitchen have soap. While you’re doing this, double check the paper towels, toilet paper and Kleenex. If you’re planning a big event and know that guests will not be in a particular room in your home, or an
area such as a closet, utilize that space in dire situations to stash unfolded laundry, toys, unsightly clutter or anything else you may not have time to put away properly. Just make sure this isn’t a closet someone will accidentally open when looking for their coat. You can also dim the lights (it’ll help hide the dust) and light a candle or diffuser to make your home smell clean while giving it an inviting glow. If all else fails, hire a professional. There are some great local companies, with very affordable rates, that can come in and give your house a good clean from top to bottom right before the holidays. 33
Worship on the Westshore 10th Victorian Christmas Eve Candlelight Service Dec 24th at 7:00pm
Carols, Candles and the Christmas Story told by folks in Victorian costumes Treats for everyone following the service at 537 Glencairn Ln., St John's Heritage Church
Westshore Community Church
• 10:00am morning service • 6:30pm candle light service • More information visit www.ccwestshore.com
CALVARY CHAPEL WESTSHORE 948 Dunford Ave, Langford • 778-679-2092
St. Marys' Metchosin Anglican Church Everyone Welcome
Candle lit Lessons and Carols Service: Dec 3, 7pm at St. Mary of the Incarnation Drop in Pageant: Dec 24, 5:30pm at St. Mary of the Incarnation
Christmas Eve: 11pm at St. Mary the Virgin Heritage Church-4354 Metchosin Rd Christmas Morning: 10am at St. Mary of the Incarnation
For more information call 250-474-4119 www.stmarysmetchosin.ca
Come join us this season as we celebrate…
December 17th Advent 3 Worship with Choir Cantata, 10:15am; Children’s Program December 24th “A Quiet Christmas” – A break from the Christmas Chaos 10:15am Christmas Eve – A Child Friendly Lessons and Carols Service 7:00pm
Gordon United Church
935 Goldstream Ave. | 250-478-6632 www.gordonunitedchurch.ca
Rev. Heidi Koschz Music by Tim Olf
Favourite Hymns: 10:1 Worship and Childrens Prog
and Wishes 15 - Gifts Coast Collective Gallery and Arts Centre 25 103-318 Wale Rd. Dec 23 Wednesday to Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
18 Jan 2 24
Habitat for Humanityâ€™s ninth annual Gingerbread Showcase Parkside Hotel and Spa 810 Humboldt St. 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily Pro D-Day West Shore Parks and Recreation 1767 Island Hwy. Swim 3:30 - 5 p.m Skate 1 - 2:30 p.m. Regular admission rates apply Metchosin Film Night: Freedom Under Load Metchosin Community Hall 4430 Happy Valley Rd. Documentary by Pavol Barabas on the porters who supply huts in the High Tatras (mountains in Slovakia). Men in their 60s-plus continue to climb with 120 packs. 7 p.m.
24 - 26 The Victoria Conference Centre Out of Hand artisan fair
720 Douglas St. Friday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Island Farms Santaâ€™s Parade Government Street (from Belleville to Chattham streets) Floats, bands and lots of fun for the entire family. For more information go to gvfs.ca. 4:45 p.m. Peninsula Co-op Free Skate Juan de Fuca Arena 1767 Island Hwy. 2:45 to 3:45 p.m. Admission is free
Third annual Magic of Christmas Craft Fair City Centre Park, 1089 Langford Pkwy. Hundreds of unique gifts, handcrafted decor, jewellery and bath and body products. Admission is by donation to Santas Anonymous and there will be activities for the kids. For more information contact christieschick@ outlook.com 5 or 10 km Walk and Christmas Potluck Emery Hall, 537 Glencairn Rd., Colwood 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Juan de Fuca Pathfinders are hosting a 5 or 10 km walk and Christmas potluck. Meet at Emery Hall. Registration starts at 9:30 a.m, with lunch following the walk. Contact Christine at 250-478-7020. The Biggest Little Market and Craft Fair Sooke Community Hall, 2037 Shields Rd. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Shine a Light on Youth This Christmas Join Threshold Housing for a tree lighting ceremony in Bastion Square to Shine a Light On Youth. The goal is to light the largest tree in the square with 10,000 lights. There will be live music, free hot chocolate and lots of fun. For every $10 donation a bulb will be lit on the tree and Threshold hopes to sell 10,000 bulbs. Funds will go to providing transitional programming and affordable, safe housing for youth who are at risk of becoming homeless. Visit thresholdhousing. ca/donate to learn more. 1 to 4 p.m.
25 - 26 Saanich Fairground, 1528 Stellys Cross Rd., Christmas in the Manger Craft Sale Saanichton 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Eighth Annual Turkey Run Thetis Lake Regional Park - Main Beach As part of their annual campaign, the Fleet Diving Unit (Pacific) is hosting its annual charity 5 km and 10 km trail run. The goal of the event is to raise enough money to feed more than 700 needy families in the community this holiday season. All proceeds go to the Goldstream Food Bank. This event is open to everyone, civilian or military, and interactive displays will be onsite for those not racing. There is no age limit and the race fee is $25. 8 a.m.
Savory Elementary School PAC Winter Fair 2721 Grainger Rd. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Christmas Bake and Craft Sale Jesken Aerie 817 Goldstream Ave. 10:30 a.m. to noon Island Equipment Owners Association’s Truck Light Convoy and Food Drive Trucks depart Ogden Point at 5:45 p.m. and arrive at Western Speedway in Langford at 8:30 p.m. Langford Christmas Light Up Veterans Memorial Park 6 to 8 p.m.
West Shore Lions Christmas Craft Fair Langford Legion, 761 Station Ave. 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Christmas Craft Beer Show Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre 1925 Blanshard St. Dec. 1, 5 to 9 p.m. and Dec. 2 from 1 to 5 p.m.
The Dickens Fair James Bay Community Centre, 140 Oswego St. 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Winter Sounds at the Westin Sunday, December 10th
2pm - 5pm
Winter Sounds at �e Westin
Westin Bear Mountain Golf Resort and Spa
Sunday, December 10
2pm - 5pm
Westin Bear Mountain Golf Res�t and Spa
Join the Westin Bear Mountain & the West Shore Arts Council as they present the “Winter Sounds at the Westin”.
Live music & theatre presented by: Four Seasons Musical Theatre Sooke Philharmoic String Quartet Paciﬁc Edge Chorus
This event will help promote the local art scene and bring together the community Artistry by: in welcoming the holiday season.
Coast Collective Artpresented Centre Live music & theatre by: Four Seasons Musical Indigenous Artists Theatre Sooke Philharmoic String Quartet Pacific Edge Chorus
For more information please visit the
Artistry by: Coast Collective Art Centre www.westshorearts.org Indigenous Artists
For more information please visit the www.westshorearts.org
Sooke Philharmonic Chamber Players and Sooke Philharmonic Chorus, conducted by Nicholas Fairbank present Continental Christmas Sooke Community Hall 2037 Shields Rd. 7:30 p.m Sooke Philharmonic Chamber Players and Sooke Philharmonic Chorus, conducted by Nicholas Fairbank present Continental Christmas Quarterdeck Ballroom Royal Roads University 2005 Sooke Rd. 2:30 p.m. Skate with Santa Westhills Arena 1089 Langford Pkwy 6 to 8 p.m.
Langford Legion Night Market 761 Station Ave. 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
9 - 10 10
PMD Recycling Belmont Secondary and Lakewood Elementary 9 a.m. to noon
Juan de Fuca Arena 1767 Island Hwy. See West Shore Parks and Recreationâ€™s website for times
View Royal Charitable Food Drive View Royal Fire Rescue 333 Island Hwy. Listen for the sirens and see Santa riding through the streets of View Royal on a fire truck. Come out with a donation or non-perishable food item and take a photo with Santa. Crews will also be serving hot chocolate at the hall. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Breakfast with Santa Metchosin Fire Hall 4440 Happy Valley Rd. 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Free family event, donations accepted for the food bank
Last Chance Christmas Craft Show Mary Winspear Centre 2243 Beacon Ave., Sidney Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is $4 Fourth Annual Metchosin Christmas Light Parade Metchosin Fire Hall 4440 Happy Valley Rd. 6 to 8 p.m. Donations accepted for the food bank Dec. 10 Winter Sounds at the Westin Presented by the West Shore Arts Council and the Westin Bear Mountain Resort 1999 Country Club Way 2 to 5 p.m.
Christmas Light Up Trolley Tours Meet at Westhills Arena in front of the outdoor arena near the bowling alley 1097 Langford Pky. 6:15 and 7:15 p.m. Two nightly tours, each approximately 45 minutes long Admission is by donation (or non-perishable food item)
Wonderland Skates 16- 20 Winter West Shore Parks and Recreation
Colwood Christmas Light Up Celebration Colwood City Hall, 3300 Wishart Rd. 6 to 8 p.m.
10,000 Tonight Food Drive Royal Bay and Belmont high schools 5 to 10 p.m
Colwood Fire Rescueâ€™s Santa Go-Round Santa will be circulating through Colwood neighbourhoods starting at 9 a.m. and finishing at around 3 p.m. Listen for the sirens and meet Santa and local firefighters. If you live on a narrow street or cul-de-sac head to the end of your road to see Santa. Crews will be accepting donations for the food bank. 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Christmas Eve Skate Juan de Fuca Arena 1767 Island Hwy. Noon to 1:30 p.m. 37
Langford Fire Rescue Santa Go-Round Firefighters will be escorting Santa on three different routes covering Langford neighbourhoods on Christmas Eve. Crews will hit the road at about 5:30 and finish at around 8:30 p.m. Watch Langford Fire Rescue on social media for more details on the routes about two weeks prior to the event. New Year’s Eve Skate Juan de Fuca Arena 1767 Island Hwy. Noon to 1:30 p.m. Toonie admission
Bowl in the New Year at Langford Lanes 1097 Langford Pkwy. 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Unlimited bowling, $15 includes shoes All Night Affair Gala Buffet Westin Bear Mountain Golf Resort and Spa 1999 Country Club Way 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Must be 19 years of age or older See bearmountain.ca for more New Year Eve’s events
Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer
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Black powder coated 1.6” metal legs: thick Standard (28” x 24”), Coffee Table (18” x 18”) (16” x 24”), End Table or Bench (16” x 12”).
• #47 • 4-1/4"
139 139 123 123 123 128 120 120 Halton 13999 123 99 Hickory 120 $ 99 48 Halto 88 n 99 135 Hardwood Hickory 4 134
179 99 19999
METAL CONTEM PORARY
• 1" x 10"
of wall and
4-3/4” x 46-3/4" planks 12 planks per Covers 18.75 box. Stockholm ft²) in 3 styles: , Helsinki, (while Oslo 1/4” supplies 5 Ply last) 5’ x
1/8” 3 Ply 5’ x 5’ Sheets
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• 2” or 3” on centre • 4’ x 8’ panels
179 1799999 199 1999999 BARNNDOO 179 99 199BAR 99 DOORS RS SOLI SOLIDDPINE PINE
BENT STRAPOR BARN Matte Black or DOOR
Bronze STRAP RUSTIC RUSTIC Matte Black HARDWAR KNOTT KNOTT YYPINE PINE E KITS or Bronze room
S D R A C T F I G here
• 1/2" x 5"
of wall and
• 1/2" x 8"
• 5/8” x 43” • Black
to the junction
PAINTAB LE PROVINCIAL
For Forclosets, closets,room 4-3/4" x 60" planks dividersor openings openings roomdividers orpassage up passagedoor uptoto44" 44"wide. door thick wide. For1-3/8" thickdoors Covers 15.71 doorsweighing 1-3/8"oror1-3/4" weighing For 1-3/4" 78"oror96" up Baltic Moon ft²) In 2 styles: 78" uptoto250 96"track Canada 250 lbs. trackkitkitincluding or Black including lbs. mounting Forest mounting door doorstraps, hardware hardware For closets, straps,allall Factory and Factoryfinished, andfloor floor guide finished,ready-to-in openings room dividers or options options ready-to-in guide Doors passage Doorsand up stall stall door andhandles thick doors to 44" wide. For handlessold soldseparately 1-3/8" or 1-3/4" separately 78" or 96" weighing up to 250 . . track kit lbs. 78'' including 78'' STRAIGHT mounting door straps, STRAIGHT hardware OR OR Factory finished, BENT and floor all BENT STRAP 96’’ STRAP 96’’ STRAIGHT STRAIGHT options ready-to-in guideMatte Matte Doors and OR Black OR Black oror stall BENT BENT Bronze handles Bronze STRAP STRAP sold separately Matte Matte Black Black . oror Bronze Bronze 78'' STRAIGHT planks per BARN 8DOOR box.
BARN DOO RS
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• #403 • 3"
! Choice for Hom e Improve men ts
SAL E EN DS DE C 2 ND! METAL STAIR 56” BOX SPINDLES Plain Round POSTS Style
• #356 • 7/16" x 2-1/4"
• 1/2" x 6"
dividers openings Clear or passage Clear up KIT For door Knotty thick doors to 44" wide. SHEET Thisunfinished 1-3/8" or 1-3/4" This unfinished SOLID 5/8” 11 Ply RioPINE 78" or 96" weighing up to 250 Knotty KnottyPine with track kit witha KIT lbs. Pinedoor 5’Made aclear in Canada including clearcoat mounting x 5’ Sheets door canbe RUSTIC coatororstained door straps, any hardware besealed KNOTT stainedtoto can sealed decor. Factory finished, decor. and floor all any compleme Y PINE compleme 2’6” x 6’8” options ready-to-inst guide • 38" Doors and • 38"x x84" ntnt (Also available 84"x x1-3/8" • 2’6” all handles • 2’6”x x6’8” 1-3/8"thick in sold separately. 6’8”(Also thick Clear • Edge (Alsoavailable • Edgeglued availablein 2’0’’ & 3’0’’) SHEET gluedKnotty This unfinished KnottyPine in2’0’’ 2’0’’& &3’0’’) CLEAR CLEAR Pine 78'' STRAIGHT SHEET 3’0’’) PINE PINE Dooronly, with OR Knotty Pine door Door only, a clear 6 6Panel BENT KNOTTY Panelstyle KNOTTY coat or stained STRAP 96’’ STRAIGHT can Hardware style Hardware be sealed PINE any decor. PINE Matte OR Black or sold soldseparately 6 6Panel compleme BENTto RIO separately RIO Panelstyle STYLE STRAP STYLE style • 38" x 84" Bronze . . nt PINE Matte Black PINE • 2’6” x 6’8” x or Bronze Rio RioStyle (Also available EA. • Edge glued1-3/8" thick Style EA. Knotty Pine in 2’0’’ & CLEARKnotty EA. EA. 3’0’’) PINE Door only, KIT EACH Rio 6 Panel style KNOTTY EA. KIT EA. Hardware PINE BARN RUSTIC EACH sold separately 6 Panel style DOOR RIO STYLE KNOTTY EA. EA. PINE . PINE Rio Style EA. Clear For closets, This unfinished EA. Knotty Pine with a clear openings room dividers or door can passage up to 44" be sealed any decor. coat or stained to door wide. For thick EA. doors weighing complemen 1-3/8" or 1-3/4" • 38" x 84" t 78" up to 250 EA. • 2’6” x 6’8” x 1-3/8" thick EACH BARNor 96" track
LIN LIN FT FT
: A new finish
• #412 • 4-1/4"
Feature BARN Walls BARNDOOR DOOR In A Box!
LIN FT LIN FT
• 1/2" x 4"
• #705 • 2-3/4"
only!! West shor
• #40 • 4-1/4"
Door only, Hardware
to give a
1” 1" xx 8" 8”
11 6468 MOULDING LINFT LIN FT
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4-3/4” x 46-3/4" planks 12 planks per Covers 18.75 box. Stockholm ft²) in 3 styles: , Helsinki, (while supplies Oslo last)
• 1/2" x 3"
You r Loc al
for a clean contempor ary look. 1”1"x x5”5" LIN LIN 1" 1”xx6" 6”
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only!! West shor
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