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Days of Decorating

Gather up your friends and family for these fun decorating projects that will get everyone in the holiday spirit By Lindsey Romain CTW Features


n the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me ... plenty of holiday decorating ideas to make the home beautiful and festive for the season. From new crafts to updates on traditional staples, holiday decorating doesn’t have to be a chore. Take this advice from Linnea Johansson, a chef and event planner for the stars who originally is from Sweden, or as she calls it: the “Home of Christmas.” She says, “The thing about the whole process of Christmas is not to be stressed out. Make it a fun thing that goes throughout the month. That’s something my family has always done.” Getting others involved means that decorating becomes a part of the holiday celebration. Homemade projects also can alleviate stress and inject some fun back into the planning process. Crafty projects get the kids involved and the creative juices flowing. So gather your friends and family and prepare some extra holiday treats to get an early start on holiday decorating.

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1 Wrapped Frames Kara Allen, party planning

expert and author of “Kara’s Party Ideas” (Cedar Fort Publishing, 2012), has a fun idea for sprucing up a standard item: Wrap it! “We wrap picture frames in gift wrap and make them look like gifts and then hang them back on the wall,” says Allen of one of her favorite family tricks. It’s perfect for leftover gift wrap that isn’t big enough to contain a whole gift.

2 Celebration Bulbs Clear glass ornament bulbs

are versatile for lots of different projects. Here’s an idea for tree ornaments that double as birthday decorations. Victoria Hudgins, blogger at A Subtle Revelry and contributing writer for “Handmade Wedding” (Chronicle Books, 2010), came up with the craft when she was looking for a way to incorporate seasonal décor with a festive birthday party. To make the ornaments, start with clear bulbs, which can be purchased at craft stores, and stuff them with confetti or textured ribbon. “A stack of small candles would be a great inclusion, as well,” Hudgins says. But they don’t have to be birthday-specific – Allen does

a similar Christmas version. She fills the inside of the bulb with liquid glue and then pours glitter inside, so it sticks to the sides. Hudgins has also done a version where she fills the bulbs with hot chocolate ingredients. “The clear ornaments are perfect because you can design them for any style or party you’d like,” Hudgins says.


A Tisket, A Tasket A fun spin on tradition is to use baskets instead of regular ornaments for the tree, says Johansson, who is releasing a new book, “Perfect Parties” (Skyhorse Publishing, 2012), this year. They fill the baskets with candy, and when the holidays are over, they invite friends to the house to socialize and eat the candy from the tree. “We call it tree-plundering,” she says. “People will sneak some pieces during Christmas,” she admits, “but the plundering is a good way to keep the celebration going. We are pretty Christmas-obsessed.”


Get Your Crochet On Anyone comfortable with crochet should try incorporating the handy activity into

Home for the Holidays

their holiday decorations. Alice Merlino, who writes the craft blog Futuregirl, has plenty of Christmas-related crochet ideas. In addition to wrapping presents in crochet – which she suggests for oddlyshaped gifts and as a way to personalize the item – Merlino also suggests crocheting candy cane-colored bunting to hang over the fireplace, stockings for everyone in the family, tree skirts, ornaments in fun shapes (like octopuses!), door wreaths and even homemade Advent calendars. “The great thing about crocheted decorations are that you can wash them to keep them looking fresh year after year,” Merlino says.


Homemade Advent Calendars Merlino isn’t the only fan of Advent calendars. Tamara Maynes, an Australian craft designer and author of “82 Modern Style Ideas to Create at Home” (Murdoch, 2012) also is an advocate. An Advent calendar is a special calendar used to count or celebrate the days of Advent in the days leading up to Christmas. To create your own, Maynes suggests removing the backs from 25 graphic Christmas cards and stamping the numbers one through 25 over the images on the front. “Write a message applicable to Christmas on the back of each and tack [them] on the wall in an organic, clustered style.” Or add a chocolate or treat to each day so kids will look forward to counting down the days to Christmas – if they aren’t already.

See Decorating, 8

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Decorating, from page 6

6 Cake Stands and Pastry Dishes Sometimes, new holiday decorations can

come from repurposed household items. Allen suggests using cake stands and pastry dishes to display Christmas objects. “Stack three cake plates in a tier and throw ornaments and Christmas trinkets and gifts on them,” she says. If you have a cake stand with a lid, she says to turn the lid upside down and fill it with ornaments.


Stocking Stand-Ins Apart from the tree, the most standard Christmas decoration is the stocking. But if you want to branch out from the traditional thumb-tacked sock on the chimney ledge, Maynes suggests, “Line objects like gumboots or tin buckets beside the fireplace, and stencil names on them to personalize.” Other items that work for stocking standins: hats, vases, gift bags, empty paint cans or vintage jars.


Mason Jar Centerpieces The rustic decorator’s darling, Mason jars, can wear many hats in Christmas decorating plans. One idea, from Maynes, is to fill them with candles and group them together as table centerpieces. Allen suggests filling them with white sand or other white and silver decorations – like garland or lights – and to group them together in different shapes and sizes.


Decorating With Food Don’t want to stock up on paper or cloth decorations? Try making decorations out of

something everyone loves: food. Johansson says that one of her favorite decorating projects is hanging gingerbread hearts, since it’s a multi-step process that allows everyone to contribute. “You make the dough, have to wait a bit, then bake them,” she says. Then others can help with decorating them and writing holiday messages with icing. Afterwards, “we put little holes in the middle and hang them in the windows,” she says. She also decorates with cloved oranges. “Leave the orange whole, and stick cloves into the orange in different patterns,” she says. The orange will dry out and stay good for a few months. “Put them in a bowl on your table or hang them around the house. It smells amazing.” The biggest benefit of decorating with food? You can eat the leftovers.

10 Sparkling Silverware If decorating with food isn’t up your

alley, maybe decorating with silverware will be. Allen likes to dip the end – the end that doesn’t go in your mouth, that is – of inexpensive cutlery in glitter and use them during parties or to dress tables throughout the season.

11 Light it Up While not exactly a craft, one non-tradi-

tional way to inject some color for the holidays is to use different colored lights around the house – not just the string lights. Rather than spending money on lights that might not be used again, Johansson recommends buying inexpensive spot lights and covering them with heat-resistant color film. “You can place those spot lights on a bookcase or whatever you want people to look at,” she says. For the general ambiance, “I use a lot of pink light bulbs,” Johansson says. Contrary to people’s beliefs, she says, “it does not create a girly hue, but actually everyone looks 15 years younger!” The “soft pink” light bulbs are available at most hardware stores.

12 Christmas Tree, Minus the Tree One of the easiest ways to free up some

decorating time in a creative way is to ditch the tree altogether and look for simple, trendy alternatives. Maynes suggests a hand-drawn tree. “Paint a large sheet of lightweight plywood with blackboard paint and draw on a stylized tree, including decorations, in white chalk,” she suggests. Or experiment with colorful chalks to add depth. Prop up against the wall and arrange presents around the bottom for a simple, easygoing Christmas “tree.” © CTW Features

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Home for the Holidays

Home for the Holidays

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Tree Tops & Bottoms Too attached to your ornaments but want a new look for the tree? Switch out the tree topper and skirt for a different vibe By Alice Oglethorpe CTW Features


or many people, Christmas tree decorations don’t change much over the years. Ornaments that have been lovingly collected and passed down from generation to generation get hung on the tree, and that’s that. So instead of messing with tradition, try thinking tops and bottoms to spruce up the tree this year. “Think of your tree as a little black dress that you can accessorize differently to take it from formal to casual in an instant,” says Cathy Hobbs, New York-based interior designer and finalist on season six of HGTV’s “Design Star” competition show.

“You can give your tree a totally different vibe without touching the ornaments by focusing on the skirt and topper.” Not only is this type of updating easy, it’s also inexpensive. “You can spend hundreds of dollars on all new ornaments and garland, but just changing the topper and skirt is much cheaper and is still impactful,” says Gina Luker, editor of the remodeling blog Shabby Creek Cottage. Every décor store will have fun options to play around with, but you can also go the DIY route. Here, Hobbs and Luker offer some ideas for finding the perfect topper-and-skirt combo, depending on the desired aesthetic. See Tree, 12

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tree, from page 10

Rustic Get a rustic feel that’s both natural and festive by gathering together pieces of wheat, hay or straw, wiring them together in the middle and tying a bright red ribbon around the wire, Hobbs says. Use that as a topper instead of a standard angel or star. Attach it to the tree with more wire. Then, for a coordinating skirt, tuck a big piece of burlap around the base of the tree. For this look, Hobbs notes that decorators should use colorful ornaments so the tree doesn’t appear too neutral.

Modern Hobbs suggests a quick trick to create a modern topper: Wrap many white lights around the top of your tree – way more than you have on the rest of it. Once turned on, they will appear like a brightly lit star. Swap out a traditional fabric skirt for a cool looking planter, bucket or box that’s been spray painted in a bold color, Luker suggests. This works particularly well if you have a live tree instead of one that’s been cut down.

the way down to the bottom of your tree for a stronger visual impact. Balance that with tulle or metallic mesh as a skirt, says Hobbs. Those fabrics will stay nice and full, giving your tree drama and elegance.


This also is an opportunity to get personal with your décor and show off items that have special meaning to you. Hobbs suggests using a large picture frame that’s not too heavy and putting a favorite quote, line from a carol or picture of your family in it. Place your tree in a corner of the room and wire the frame to the top of it. (This works best on an artificial tree, since its top will be nice and sturdy.) Then pull out a favorite antique quilt, blanket, table cloth or other heirloom fabric that has significance to you, she says. Drape it around your tree as a skirt: It’s better than keeping the cloth hidden in a linen closet. And if you’re worried about it getting ruined, protect the fabric by first covering the base of the tree with a few plastic bags. © CTW Features


For a formal look, Luker recommends tying an oversized ribbon into a big bow at the top, using wire to keep it securely in place. Don’t cut the ribbon too short; let the ends reach all

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Merry Menagerie Easy-to-make cardstock animals are perfect as ornaments, wall décor or toys for the little ones Chelsea Costa, Californiabased blogger at Lovelyindeed. com, was inspired by beautiful vintage Christmas cards that had people with moving parts. “I thought it would be fun to try to recreate them,” she says. “Once I got into the project, I realized that it might be really beautiful to do animals instead of people, and the project kept evolving from there.” For Costa, animals are holiday-themed decorations because they “are peaceful and still and full of the quiet joy of

Christmas, for you to use in any way you like. They can be ornaments, gift decorations or tags, shadow puppets or just toys for your little ones.” The textured, glittering animals with movable parts are inviting to touch and play with. Here are the simple instructions on how to create your own holiday menagerie this season.

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4. Glitter the animals and wreaths for an extra eyecatching sparkle. Costa uses iridescent glitter on cream cardstock and green glitter for the wreaths. 5. Use the brads or eyelets to attach moving parts to each animal. 6. Glue the wreaths or other holiday-themed decorations to the animals. 7. To make ornaments, use string or ribbon to either tape or thread through the animals.


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It’s a Colorful Life Jonathan Adler has never shied away from bold color, and the holiday season is no exception. A design legend in the 21st century, Adler suggests unique color palettes to create a “happy chic” mood for the holidays

By Bettina Chang CTW Features


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See Colorful, 17

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Colorful, from page 16 (Sterling Signature, 2012), and appeared at various design conferences and on countless television shows as a design expert. For the holiday season, Adler says he doesn’t go all-out to decorate. “I’m Jewish and my spouse is a gentile, so we don’t do a Christmas tree,” he says. “But back when the Liberace Museum was around, which it isn’t now, we bought two ornaments and kept them in the original boxes. Every year, we plop them on either side of the mantle. That’s how we know the holidays are coming.” After all, their home is full of furniture and décor that would make holiday decorating a “herculean” task. He says, “I believe that surrounding yourself with the stuff you love, no matter how stylistically eclectic it is, will make you happy.” And Adler is an expert on creating happy spaces. His use of bold, graphic patterns and vibrant colors make any room look playful and elegant at once, which is embodied by his catchphrase, “happy chic.”

Of course, this is the kind of attitude you want to have during the holiday season, so read on to find out the color palettes that Adler recommends to create a bold, beautiful home for the holidays this year.

Gold, Silver, Blue

For Adler, the holidays are all about the sparkle and twinkle. “Gold, silver, other metallics … I like to mix them indiscriminately,” he says. Plus, to add a punch of color, “I always think of icy blue as a fantastic holiday color that goes beautifully with gold or silver.” In his own home, he displays a good amount of his own work in gold- and silver-luster pottery. “The metallic materials find their ways into my house,” he says. “I just made this groovy brass peacock table, and it looks perfect in my house.” Of course, he recognizes it’s not so easy for those of us who don’t make a living by creating home décor. In that case, he says, “Add more lights” to create more sparkle in the home, and don’t forget the garland on the mantle to make it more festive.

See Colorful, 18

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Page 17

Colorful, from page 17

“Obviously, that’s what the holidays are about. Sparkly is happy, and that’s why I go for the sparkle.”


This on-trend color combination takes some courage, but Adler says, go for it. “If I’m feeling a little more neutral or subdued, I’ll do icy grays with pops of orange.” Leave it to this color guru to consider bright orange accents as a subdued palette. “Orange is the color of happiness,” he says. “A lot of people

have neutrals in their homes, on the furniture and walls, so throwing in some nice orange throw pillows is a great place to introduce color.” Another tip is to keep a big bowl of oranges around. “It’s

counterintuitive because it’s the freezingest out at winter time, but I always have it … and I keep a lot of flowers around, the freshest ones, whatever is in season.” Make sure it’s a bright, sunny

orange that exudes warmth, and put it where everyone is bound to see it, like the dining table. “Your tabletop should be bright and colorful,” Adler says. © CTW Features


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Page 19

Candle Trend Watch


his holiday season, the familiar warm glow of candles will be complemented by frosty winter wonderland colors and fragrances. “There’s a sense of icy, fresh, watery – like a really light snow that’s glistening over things,” says Barbara Miller, spokeswoman for the National Candle Association. “That’s not only in the colors, you also have it in the fragrances.” Gold candles and metallic décor accents are adding extra shimmer to the holiday season. Yankee Candle is promoting its “All That Glitters” holiday 2012 collection, with candles presented in a gold-accented jar. “Gold will play a significant role in the holiday season,” Miller says. “So the harvest golds of the fall will turn into metallic golds for the holidays.” In Santa Claus, Ind., -– yes, there is such a place! – the Santa Claus Christmas Store is skipping traditional candles in favor of the flameless, battery-powered variety, which they call luminaria. “This year we’re seeing more of

See Candle, 21

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Page 20

Home for the Holidays

1305 Main, Great Bend • 620-792-4482 Hours: M-F 9-6; Thurs. til 7; Sat. 9-5; Sun. 1-5

THE PERFECT DISPLAY Candle, from page 20 the winter wonderland look, which is our silvers and whites and ice,” says manager Holly Xanders. The luminaria are pillars of lightly scented wax, and they operate on a timer, glowing for five hours at a time. Xanders says the flame is life-like, and customers appreciate the safety as well as the décor possibilities. In addition to frosty motifs, candles that beckon nostalgia are also popular this season. At Porch Swing Candles in West Columbia, Tex., owner Diana Schrank says this year’s Christmas candles are all about coziness. “Everything feels so back to basics right now,” she says. Porch Swing’s hand-

poured candles will be more muted in color to evoke the comforts of home. Evergreen smells and gourmet scents are always popular, and this holiday they’ll be enhanced by the frosty theme. Yankee Candle’s “Pine Cone and Lime,” for example, is a riff on a traditional scent. The citrus adds an icy crispness to the flavor. Many of the newer candle scents this season aren’t holiday-specific, so they can be burned long into the New Year. That also means they make great gifts, and not just for women. New York City-based Izola introduced a line of candles for men in early 2012.

The collection features hand-poured, vegetable wax candles with a masculine design and scents that aren’t overpowering or too sweet. “Magnolia” is ideal for the holiday season, says Ian O’Brien, business development director at Izola. “Magnolia resembles that of the magnolia tree flower, so it has a lemony essence,” he says. To ensure any holiday candle lasts for seasons, trim the wick before each use. If it’s a scented container candle, place a lid on it after each use to preserve the fragrance. – Alyssa Karas © CTW Features

Great Bend Public Library • FREE Books, Movies, Music, and More! • FREE Movie Nights • FREE Computer Classes • FREE Computer Use w/Internet • FREE WiFi Cake Pans Genealogy Resources Programs for Children, Teens and Adults HOURS: Monday: 12 pm-9 pm Tuesday - Thursday: 10 am-9 pm Friday & Saturday: 10 am-5 pm Sunday: 1 pm-5 pm SUMMER HOURS - Memorial Day thru Labor Day: Monday-Wednesday: 8:30 am-6 pm Thursday: 8:30 am-8 pm Friday & Saturday: 9 am-5 pm Sunday: Closed

1409 Williams Great Bend, KS

(620) 792-2409

Home for the Holidays

Page 21

Go Ahead, Wax Nostalgic Votive candles

Votives are versatile and fit nicely into arrangements or on the dinner table. “Votives look really different because you can get all the sparkle and the warmth of candlelight, but you can still see across the table,� says Barbara Miller, spokeswoman for the National Candle Association. Try arranging votives on a mirrored surface for an extra glow.

Pillar candles

Pillar candles are great for dÊcor purposes, whether on their own or in candlescapes. If they’re going to be used on a dining table, however, make sure they don’t obstruct the view since they tend to be larger candles.

Container candles

Container candles are the best type of scented candle because the wax can be softer. This way, it holds more fragrance than votives or pillars, which are made of harder wax.

Gel candles

Gel candles are also good for decoration, and because they need to be in a container, you can get creative with their presentation.

Floating candles:

In a large glass bowl, floating candles make a nice centerpiece. /e:/)9a9DA/aFTDc;-/UafD_aaT/>;!>/a)DAA/)\;DAafD_a )Aa-/F/A-aDAJa/e:/)9a A\/TA/\a>/\UafD_a-DdA>D-aa UDA6a;AaU/)DA-UaA-aa@Dc;/a;Aa@;A_\/Uad;\9aaU;@F>fa 3U\a)DAA/)\;DAJ a ;6Aa_FaADdaA-aT/)/;c/a]a3T//a@DA\9Ua c/aDc/Ta .]haaf/Ta D3a/e:/)9a9DA/aDTa A\/TA/\aU/Tc;)/2 !fa!_A->;A6Ja


D@/aT/U\T;)\;DAUaFF>fJa9T//a@DA\9Ua3T//aFF>;/Ua\Da A\/TA/\aU/Tc;)/ A-a ;69\A;A6a )=a))/UUDT;/U+aA-a D)>a9DA/aU/Tc;)/aA-a3/\_T/UJ

Page 22

Home for the Holidays

Your Christmas Headquarters 1117 Williams • Great Bend 620-792-2536

Tealight candles

“I’ve noticed that customers want tapers and tealights probably five to one more during the holidays,” says Diana Schrank, owner of Porch Swing Candles in West Columbia, Tex. “That truly sets the ambiance at a party, or even if it’s a family enjoying quiet time at home.”

Taper candles

Taper candles are the traditional choice for tables, but they also work well in arrangements.

With Appreciation at the Holidays to our customers, neighbors and friends This holiday season we want to give you our thanks and best wishes.


10th & Baker • Great Bend • 620-792-2571 • 1-800-239-7840

MON.- FRI.: 8:00-7:00; SAT.: 8:00-5:00

Home for the Holidays

Page 23

Cook Now, Eat Later, Skip the Stress Can make-ahead foods still taste fresh come mealtime? Absolutely. Here’s a guide to what to make ahead, when to make it, how to store it, and how to reheat it

By Dawn Klingensmith CTW Features


etting Thanksgiving dinner – or any holiday feast – on the table can seem like a math word problem gone awry: Question: If it takes 4 hours to cook a 15-pound turkey, and three of the side dishes need something done to them “just before serving,” how many times will the cook wish there were an easier way without resorting to boxed or “instant” imposters of traditional favorites?

See Cook, 25

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Holiday Season Jewelry, Purses, Accessories, Shoes & Apparel for all ages! Hair Products, Polishes, Lotions, Lilly’s Lavender, Holiday Gift Sets & Much More.

Thanksgiving Weekend k d Holiday l d Sale l Friday, November 23 8-6 p.m. and Saturday, November 24 9-5 p.m.


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Page 24

Hours: M, T, W, T, F: 8 – 5:30 • Sat. 9-5

Home for the Holidays

N. Hwy. 281 Great Bend 620-792-7041

cook, from page 24 Answer: Probably countless times, and each of them unnecessary because many side dishes can be prepared or partially prepared a day or more in advance. And certain freezerfriendly recipes can be made weeks or months in advance and still taste fresh come mealtime. “When it comes to a traditional Thanksgiving meal, everything but a green salad and the turkey can be made ahead, frozen and reheated on the holiday,” says Michele Borboa, a personal chef from Bozeman, Mont., and author of “Make-ahead Meals Made Healthy” (Fair Winds Press, 2011). “Bread-based stuffings are especially easy to fix and freeze, but you can also freeze mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce and rice dishes, so all you have to do is thaw or reheat and serve.” It’s simply math: An earlier start plus Borboa’s step-by-step instructions equals more time for friends and family over the holidays.

Or, start two days ahead to save time without freezing. Cube and bake bread until lightly toasted, cool, and store at room temperature in an airtight container. For rice stuffings, steam the rice, let it cool completely, and store in the refrigerator. Chop onions, celery, carrots and other vegetables your recipe calls for. Store them in the refrigerator to sauté on the holiday, or sauté them in advance, cool and refrigerate until you assemble the stuffing. If your recipe calls for nuts, toast and store them in an airtight container. “On Thanksgiving Day, all you have to do is assemble the prepped ingredients along with broth and any other ingredients” such as herbs and spices, and then follow instructions for cooking, Borboa says. Cranberry sauce can be made up to two months in advance, cooled completely and frozen.

2 months in advance

Bread-based and rice stuffings can be fully assembled, baked cooled and frozen. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat in the oven.

Great Bend FLORAL & GIFTS TS Call us to decorate your home for the holidays! Poinsettias - Flowers - Plants - Snack Baskets Candy Bouquets - Fruit Baskets Silk Arrangements - Stuffed Animals - Seasonal Plants Wire Service Available - Delivery Available 1913 Lakin Ave., Great Bend, KS • (800) 793-5871 •

Breastfeeding questions? We’re here to help.

Barton County Health Department 620.793.1909

See Cook, 26

Christmas Monday, December 24th St. Patrick – 5:00 PM Children’s Mass; 7:30 PM; 10:30 PM St. Rose – 6:30 PM; 9:00 PM Tuesday, December 25th St. Patrick – 9:30 AM St. Rose – 10:00 AM Spanish Mass – 12:30 PM Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God – Holy Day – Monday, December 31st St. Patrick – 5:15 PM St. Rose – 6:30 PM Tuesday, January 1st St. Patrick – 9:30 AM St. Rose – 10:00 AM St. Rose – Spanish – 12:30 PM

St. Patrick Church 4100 Broadway


St. Rose of Lima Church Broadway & Baker

Sunday Eucharist Saturday Saturday Sunday

5 pm 5:30 pm 8 am

St. Patrick St. Rose St. Rose

Home for the Holidays

Sunday Sunday Sunday

9:30 am St. Patrick 10 am St. Rose 12:30 pm St. Rose (Spanish)

Page 25

cook, from page 25

1 month in advance

“Raw potatoes don’t freeze well,� Borboa warns, “but mashed potatoes can be made up to one month in advance. Make your favorite mashed potatoes, spread them in a greased casserole dish and cool completely. Place a sheet of plastic wrap directly over the potatoes, and wrap the casserole dish tightly with heavy-duty foil.� To reheat, thaw overnight in the refrigerator and place in the oven for 30 minutes at 350 degrees F. “You may have to adjust the butter, milk and seasonings but the hard work is done well in advance,� Borboa says. Also an advocate of doing as much as possible ahead of time, Chicago event planner Debi Lilly believes quality suffers for certain dishes. “Mashed potatoes absolutely cannot be made in advance. To me, the best texture is when they’re fresh off the stovetop,� says Lilly, president of A Perfect Event. “They come out warm and creamy, and they just don’t carry that same consistency when reheated. They get a little lumpier and dry out, and the texture changes.� The gravy that goes on top of them also requires same-day preparation, according to Lilly: “It’s very fatty and tends to separate,� she says. If you’d rather not freeze mashed potatoes, you can save time with this fix-ahead tip: Wash and scrub potatoes, cut them into chunks, and place in a large pot. Fill with enough cold water to cover the potatoes and add a generous pinch of salt and the juice of one lemon to keep potatoes from browning. Potatoes can stay covered in water, refrigerated, for up to two days, Borboa says. When ready to cook, drain the water and boil in fresh water.

2 weeks in advance

“I prefer fresh-baked breads and rolls since freezing them can take away from their taste and texture, but if frozen properly, they can be made two to three weeks in advance and reheated on Thanksgiving Day,� Borboa says.

Page 26

Allow fresh-baked rolls to cool completely, and then place them on a baking sheet. Place in the freezer until just solid. Place rolls in heavy-duty freezer bags, squeeze the air out, seal and freeze. You can simply let them thaw at room temperature overnight and serve them or warm them in the oven.

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2 days in advance

“You can’t cook an entire turkey and reheat it without ruining quality and increasing your chances of food poisoning,� Borboa warns, “but you can prep a few ingredients to save time.� A day or two ahead, cut oranges, onions, celery, carrots, herbs and other ingredients you plan to use to flavor the turkey. “I don’t like soggy stuffing so I bake stuffing in the oven and fill the cavity of the turkey with aromatics and shove herbs, spices, citrus, onions and garlic beneath the skin of the turkey,� Borboa says. “I prep the ingredients ahead of time so all I have to do on Thanksgiving Day is put them in place in the turkey before putting it in the oven.�

1 day in advance

“When it comes to salads, I say fresh is best, but you can certainly chop vegetables and other salad ingredients a day in advance and then assemble them on Thanksgiving Day and allow them to chill before serving,� Borboa says. “Always put the dressing on right before serving since vinegar and other acidic ingredients will wilt salad greens.�

Switch And Receive:


Thanksgiving Day

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s best to prep fruit salads the day you serve them because the fruit tends to turn brown,â&#x20AC;? Borboa says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Even when you have citrus juice mixed with them, they donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have the vibrancy of being just sliced or diced. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d wait until right before serving to add bananas since they tend to get soggy when mixed with juicy fruit.â&#x20AC;? Š CTW Features






877- 621-2600

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Home for the Holidays

Make-ahead appetizer: Mouthwatering Mini Crab Cakes Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil 1 small onion, minced 1 clove garlic, minced 1 pound lump crab, picked over, finely chopped 2/3 cup light mayonnaise made with olive oil 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh dill 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives 1 tablespoon Old Bay Seasoning 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard 5 cups whole wheat bread crumbs, divided 2/3 cup all-purpose flour 4 eggs, beaten

1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. 2. Add onion and carrot and cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes. 3. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. 4. Transfer to a large bowl. 5. Add crab, mayonnaise, herbs, Old Bay, mustard and 1 cup bread crumbs, stirring well to combine. 6. Form mixture into 32 crab cakes. 7. Place flour, eggs and remaining bread crumbs in three separate shallow bowls. 8. Dip crab cakes in flour, shaking off excess. Dip in eggs, allowing excess to drip off.

Dip in bread crumbs to coat. 9. Set crab cakes on a greased baking sheet and refrigerate for 1 hour. 10. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 11. Spray crab cakes with olive oil. 12. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until lightly browned. 13. Let cool completely on a wire rack. 14. To freeze, place crab cakes in a single layer on a baking sheet until firm. 15. Transfer crab cakes to a large freezer bag or freezer container.

16. To reheat, place frozen crab cakes on a greased baking sheet in a 375° over and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until heated through. Serve warm. Make up to one month ahead and freeze until ready to reheat. Yield: 32 crab cakes Source: Make-Ahead Meals Made Healthy by Michele Borboa

Celebrate “A Different Kind of Christmas” First United Methodist Church 2123 Forest Ave, Great Bend

P.M. on December 24th Join us at 7:00 or 11:00 ristmas Eve Service for our Candlelight Ch

Our Advent Sermon Series: December 2: Expect a Miracle December 9: Giving Up on Perfect; at 10:30 A.M. the Children’s Christmas Program December 16: Scandalous Love; at 10:30 the Christmas Cantata – “Classic Noels” December 23: Jesus’ Wish List

“‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you? “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” (Matthew 25)

Join us in Worship at 8:30 and 10:30 A.M.

Home for the Holidays

Page 27

Holy Family School e w h t o d r e ld... v o l o s d Go


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Jesus • Light of the World • Lamb of God • Prince of Peace • Bread of Life • Hope for all • Rock of Salvation • Son of G

“Do not be afraid; for behold, I proclaim to you good n 4200 Broadway • Great Bend, KS 67530 •

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20-792-7301 • Night or Day • 1-800-428-1445 - Proud Supporters of Holy Family School

d e

Play It Safe Christmas music is everywhere, all the time. Here’s how to create a festive mood without putting the overplayed on repeat

By Lindsey Romain CTW Features


o holiday party is complete without festive music, but come turkey time, guests might be burned out. Grandma plays them in the kitchen, department stores blare them from window displays and no car ride is safe from a holiday-themed radio station. But how can you have a holiday party without them? Easy. Seek out something off-thebeaten track. Ronald Clancy, author and product developer of the “Millennia Collection: Glorious Christmas Music, Songs and Carols” – a Christmas music package that chronicles the history of holiday music from the early centuries of Christianity to today – suggests classical pieces that may be unfamiliar to the modern ear, and that don’t make it to the radio airwaves too often. On his suggested classical playlist: “Gloria” from “Le Messe” by Camille Saint-Saens, “Hort Zu Ihr Lieben Leute” by Michael Praetorius, “Anima Nostra” by Michael Haydn, “Messiah” by George Frideric Handel, “Down in Yon Forest” – an anonymously written 15th century English folk song – and “Panis Angelicus” by Cesar

Franck (recently popularized by Josh Groban). The songs aren’t glaringly Christmas-sounding but have roots in the meaning of the holiday and lend a similar ambiance. Clancy also suggests covers of uncommon holiday songs, like John Jacob Niles unique take on “I Wonder as I Wander” or “Morning Has Broken” by Cat Stevens, which was originally the Gaelic Christmas hymn “Leanabh An Aigh.” Some entirely non-Christmas songs that he says can still evoke a Christmas-esque mood: “What a Wonderful World,” “Wind Beneath My Wings,” “Yesterday When I Was Young,” “My Favorite Things,” “The Sounds of Silence,” “Bridge Over Troubled Water” and “As Time Goes By.” Jim Blum, who hosted “Ornaments & Icing,” a nationally distributed Christmas show for NPR, suggests “reinvented” Christmas music. “The clichés are ousted and the religion is underplayed,” he says of his favorites, like Mindy Smith’s “My Holiday,” Martin Sexton’s “Camp Holiday,” Bela Fleck & The Fleckstones’ “Jingle All the Way” and Mary Chapin Carpenter’s “Come Darkness, Come Light.” And while they may be more outright familiar than his other suggestions, Blum also recommends Christmas albums played on unique instruments to give them an edge – carpenter Woody Phillips’s “A Toolbox Christmas,” with holiday melodies played on or with tools like power drills and hammers.


Walk In Tubs – Where Safety Meets Comfort Choose from more than a dozen wall colors, shower base colors & accessories!

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Page 30

Home for the Holidays


Bring in this coupon and get $10.00 off of a $100.00 purchase you spend here at Country Seasons. Exp. 12/24/12 Dawn & Lori Skelton - Owners 519 Broadway, Larned, KS


Home for the Holidays

Page 31

‘tis the Season Two-Day to Be Toasty Raise a glass to friends and family with this sweet cocktail sure to keep spirits –and glasses – full of joy By Matthew M. F. Miller CTW Features

Toasted Marshmallow Ingredients


Friday, Nov. 23 & Saturday, Nov. 24



off In-stock Safes

3/4 ounce Godiva Chocolate Vodka 3/4 ounce Smirnoff Fluffed Vodka 1/4 ounce Baileys Original Irish Cream Preparation 1. Shake and strain into a shot glass. 2. Finish with dollop of marshmallow fluff. 3. Rest small chocolate bar square and small graham cracker on top.



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Page 32

Home for the Holidays

It’s been a pleasure serving you this past year!

We Deliver Quality You Can See, Year After Year. Custom upholstery for furniture, vehicles, boats, campers. Choose from an extensive selection of fabric types, colors and patterns. • Carpet binding – any shape • Custom design embroidery • Heat pressing for uniforms, If you have a t-shirts, athletic apparel need – come see • Custom pillows, hats, jackets, etc. what we can • Soft good needs for children and adults do for you! We have gift certificates for the hard-to-buy-for person on your list. tral Kansas Ce n

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Merry Christmas

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May the coming year bring peace and joy to you and those you cherish. For all the loyal patronage you’ve brought us, we will always be grateful.


FORD LINCOLN MON.- FRI.: 7:30-6:00; SAT.: 8:00-5:00

Home for the Holidays

1815 10th St., Great Bend 620-793-5427 1-800-284-4941

Page 33

Where There’s Smoke ..

Oven? Not this year. Follow 2 of the most popular turkey trends to the great outdoors: grilling and smoking Mr. Gobbles


By Matthew M. F. Miller CTW Features

reaking with tradition is always a test of the home cook’s mettle, especially around the holidays. Loved ones have expectations and when they aren’t met, disappointment causes upset even Tums can’t relieve. For those looking to make the leap from the oven to the

See Smoke, 35

Find today's, yesterday's or last year's news with your


Make Your Hometown News Your Homepage.


We’re Open Black Friday at 12 a.m. 12 to 5 - 10% off complete purchase 5 to 6:30 - 25% off Rings and Earrings 6:30 to 8:30 - 25% off Necklaces Hourly 8:30 to 10:30 - 25% off Handbags Specials! 10:30 to 12:30 - 25% off Bracelets 12:30 to 2:30 - 25% off Wallets 2:30 to 4:30 - 25% off Hats, Scarves and Belts 4:30 to 5:30 - 10% off complete purchase


Go online or call to subscribe. 620-792-1211 • 800-950-8742

Page 34

1211 Main, Great Bend Hours: Mon.-Fri. 10:30-5:30; Sat. 10-4 620-796-2341

Home for the Holidays

Smoke, from page 6 outdoors this year, there are a few general guidelines to make sure that the holiday turkey turns out well done – and not charred or dry. The USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service recommends the following pointers for successfully smoking a turkey: Whole turkeys that weigh 12 pounds or less are the recommended size for safe grilling or smoking. A larger turkey remains in the “Danger Zone” – between 40 degrees F and 140 degrees F – too long. If a larger turkey has been mistakenly purchased, detach the dark meat sections (leg and thigh portions) from the breast and smoke/grill the turkey parts separately. This procedure should result in the best possible results. When purchasing a whole turkey or turkey breast, the structure is as important as the weight.

Generally, a turkey that is broad and flat will fit better under the covered smoker or grill than one that protrudes too high in the breast area. Remember there should be at least one inch of space between the turkey and the lid. Do not stuff the smoked turkey. Because smoking is at a low temperature, it can take too long for the temperature of the stuffing to reach the required temperature of 165 degrees F. Also, smoked stuffing has an undesirable flavor. Following, a recipe for a grilled turkey and one for a smoked turkey, courtesy the National Turkey Federation. © CTW Features

CANNON PRODUCE, INC. Small Fruit Basket (Half Peck)

5 Oranges, 4 Grapefruit, 4 Red Delicious Apples, 2 Pears, 1/4 lbs. Mixed Nuts. Net Weight 7 lbs.

Medium Fruit Basket (Peck)

11 Oranges, 6 Grapefruit, 7 Red Delicious Apples, 3 Pears, 1/4 lbs. Mixed Nuts. Net Weight 13 lbs.

Will Deliver in Barton County

Other sizes available. Fruit baskets come in holiday boxes ready for shipping. Packed Fresh. Please give us a 10-day notice.

Cannon Produce, Inc. Great Bend 620-617-8859

We want to give your our thanks and best wishes.

Merry Christmas!

We look forwared to serving you in the upcoming year. Joe and Linda Cannon


Fire Extinguishers Sales & Service

Great Bend 620-786-0048

Home for the Holidays

Page 35


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Page 36

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Home for the Holidays

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Savory Grilled Turkey:

The Ultimate Grilled Turkey


elight holiday guests’ taste buds with a new take on the holiday bird. The savory and rich flavor profile the grill adds to the turkey will keep your recipe in the books for seasons to come. 1 (12 pound) whole turkey 1 cup unsalted butter, cubed 1/2 cup cider vinegar 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce 1 tablespoon A.1. steak sauce 1 teaspoon kosher salt 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1 teaspoon Louisiana-style hot sauce

1. Remove giblets from turkey (discard or save for another use). 2. Using long-handled tongs,

moisten a paper towel with cooking oil and lightly coat the grill rack. Prepare grill for indirect heat, using a drip pan in the center. Skewer turkey openings closed. 3. When the grill temperature has reached about 350° F, place turkey on the grill rack, directly over the drip pan. Grill, covered, over indirect medium heat for 1 hour. 4. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat. Set aside and cover 2/3 cup for serving. 5. Continue to grill turkey 1 hour-2 hours longer or until a meat thermometer reads 175° F in the thigh, basting frequently with remaining sauce. 6. Cover turkey and let stand for 15 minutes before carving. Serve with reserved sauce. Visit us online at

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Monday – Friday 8am – 5pm | Saturday 8am – 12pm

Home for the Holidays

Page 37

Pumpkin Perfected Bake from scratch without stress with a few simple suggestions. By Dana Carman CTW Features


aking pie from scratch may not seem like the best way to lighten the Thanksgiving to-do list. According to chef Millicent Souris, however, that’s the best way to your best pumpkin pie and, really, she assures, it’s not as laborious as it sounds. Souris, author of “How to Build a Better Pie: Sweet and Savory Recipes for Flaky Crusts, Toppers, and the Things in Between” (Quarry Books, 2012), has offered some of her expert advice for the would-be baker along with a recipe that puts a new spin on the old classic.

What makes a “perfect” pumpkin pie? Pie is an intersection of crust and filling and baking, so it’s about all three being harmonious. Where do most people go wrong with their pies? People overwork their crust so it ends up being chewy, rather than flaky and tender. They don’t use enough salt, in general, to flavor the filling or the crust (salt informs flavor). Pies are generally under-baked and people use criminal amounts of cinnamon and nutmeg.

See Pumpkin, 39

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Page 38

On the third day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me 3 lap lanes and tennis courts.

On the fourth day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me lots of yummy health shakes.

On the first day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me a great way to be healthy.

On the second day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me 2 Boot Camps.

On the fifth day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me 5 personal trainers.

On the sixth day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me 6 stationary bikes.

On the seventh day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me 7 days a week service.

On the eighth day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me 8 hours of daily Daycare.

On the ninth day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me several tanning packages.

On the tenth day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me 10 treadmills.

On the eleventh day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me 11 group fitness class instructors.

On the twelfth day of Fitness Club 1 Fitness gave to me a 12 month discount membership.

Home for the Holidays

Pumpkin, from page 38 What are your secrets for making your own crust? The best crust, hands-down, is half unsalted butter and half leaf lard. The butter adds that lovely richness that only butter owns (sorry, vegans) and leaf lard, the holy grail of pastry fat offers a clean flavor and tender flake. Shortening was invented to mimic leaf lard, but Crisco is evil. Certainly all lard or all butter work, or any variation of. Handle the crust the least. Don’t overwork it. Make it with your hands for the most control. Be quick – every motion should have a purpose. Do you prefer real pumpkin or canned? I think canned pumpkin is where pumpkin pie gets gross. Using pumpkins is not a big deal. Buy one. Turn your oven on to 400 degrees. Cut the pumpkin into big pieces and take the seeds out. Toss with some olive oil, sprinkle with salt, add some aromatics like cinnamon stick, star anise, nutmeg, a vanilla bean husk – these lightly inform the flavor. Roasting food brings out lots of flavor. Roast the pumpkin until it is done (when a butter knife slides through easily). Scrape the pumpkin from the skin. Mash or put through a colander. We think all this stuff is hard, but it’s not. You can prep the pumpkin days before you need it. See Pumpkin, 39

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Home for the Holidays

Page 39

Pumpkin, from page 38

Do you have any suggestions for those looking to “spice up” their pumpkin pies? That’s where the praline comes in. I also think nuanced seasoning, such as using whole spices, changes the game. Nutmeg, cinnamon, mace, allspice – everything should be balanced. I like to add fresh ginger to brighten it, along with lemon zest and juice. A shot of whisky never hurt anybody or anything. How far in advance would you recommend baking your pumpkin pies before Thanksgiving? Ideally the same day, but Thanksgiving is a tough one. Everything can be prepped, the filling can be made ahead of time and the crust can be pre-baked the night before. If you must, bake it the night before, and just let it cool down and stay out at room temperature overnight. Room temperature is the best way to serve food; you get the entire flavor. If you refrigerated it, warm it a bit to take the chill off. © CTW Features

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Page 40

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Just mention this ad to get this offer. Expires 12/31/12. Offer excludes consignment items and tours.

Home for the Holidays

Why Shop Locally First This Holiday Season? BE AWARE OF THE IMPACT OF YOUR DOLLARS. “MULTIPLIER EFFECT.” One dollar spent at a local business will return five times that amount within the community through city taxes, employees’ wages, and purchase of materials and supplies at other local businesses. In addition, these businesses will turn that dollar back into the community through school funding, social services, and contributions to local non-profit organizations.

CHOICE MAKES FOR A RICHER COMMUNITY. Local businesses add to the character that is Barton County, contributing more than just goods and services. They offer personalized attention, add diversity to our shopping options, and bring life to historic buildings. And they pay their employees, and local taxes – with the income they receive.

Each Time You Choose To Spend Your Dollars At A Local Business, You Are Voting For The Continued Strength And Vitality Of Our Community.

THINK ABOUT YOUR SPENDING CHOICES. You can help support choice

in our local communities by patronizing local businesses. Think about the long-term effect of your spending choices. The shopping decisions you make today have a ripple effect on our local and regional economy. Let’s all shop locally first this holiday season and make sure we keep Barton County communities thriving for the benefit of our children’s children and their children as well.

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Home for the Holidays

Page 41

Pass the Charcuterie and Cheese

Fancy meats and artisanal cheeses bring flavor and adventure to the appetizer tray – and get the conversation started, too. Try these creative ideas for a no-fuss, impressive spread By Bev Bennett CTW Features



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Page 42

ophisticated, stylish and as smooth as fine barrel-aged bourbon. That’s the tone to set when entertaining this holiday season. You can pull this off with ease. In fact, you’re already familiar with the basics. You probably stock your kitchen with cold cuts, cheese, condiments and crackers. That’s your everyday fare. For parties, polish your culinary vocabulary and upgrade your shopping list to look something like this: H charcuterie H fromage H mostarda H a combination of candied fruit and mustard H aigre-doux, a sweet-sour flavor combination H specialty crackers Yes, still crackers, in classier versions with herbs, seeds and spices. If you’re so inclined, you can even make your own tantalizing meat products, pickles, jams and crisp, paper-thin crackers, thanks to chef-authored cookbooks. But if simplicity also is a goal,

purchase party fixings in supermarkets and finer food stores, and use your creative energy to assemble mouth-watering pairings of meats, cheeses and accents. “It’s an easy style of entertaining, whether you’re cooking or bringing something,” says Paul Virant, executive chef of Vie restaurant in Western Springs, Ill. For inspiration, visit a local gourmet shop. See how the ingredients are merchandised. Learn where the products are from, then taste to determine the predominant flavors. Cheese shops often sell nuts, honey, crackers and condiments, says Chester Hastings, chef at Joan’s on Third, a family-owned gourmet food emporium in Los Angeles. That’s a clue about foods that pair well together. The challenge is to provide a balance of textures and flavors. No one taste should dominate. Experiment and pick the flavors you like. “For me, the idea is sweet, sour, salty. That’s the flavor profile in general that I’m looking for,” says Virant, author of “The Preservation Kitchen” (Ten Speed Press, 2012).

See Charcuterie, 43

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Home for the Holidays

Charcuterie, from page 42 When he’s entertaining at home, the menu might include “some really good salami, some preserved eggplant, my own pickled artichokes, shaved Parmesan and grilled bread,” says the chef. His cookbook explains how to make, and cook with, pickles, preserves and aigre-doux. The salty-and-sweet pairing of grapes or figs with cheese appeals to Hastings, author of “The Cheesemonger’s Kitchen” (Chronicle Books, 2011). Meat, especially artisan-style cured and cooked products, delivers additional layers of interest. “You taste really good pork, then you taste salt as a supportive role, and then the other seasonings,” says Vanessa Chang of Creminelli Fine Meats, Salt Lake City. “Basically you have a food product that’s very concentrated in flavor,” says Chang, marketing and education manager of the com-

pany known for its fine salami. She suggests pairing cured meats with vegetables. Chefs agree. Virant likes to serve fresh vegetables with the pickled counterpart. “It’s a cool thing to do,” he says. Virant suggests pickled and raw carrots or pickled and roasted beets. You may find that your guests are drawn to the vegetables first. When Sean Baker introduced vegan charcuterie to Gather Restaurant in Berkeley, Calif., he had no idea it would become a rave-worthy concept. Don’t imagine kohlrabi carved into prosciutto slices, however. “It’s a plate of vegetables prepared with a good amount of technique,” he says. Baker’s passion is pickling and fermentation.

A Crunchy Sideshow Exciting, but not a show-off. That’s what you want in a party cracker to serve with cheeses and cured meat products. Unless you’re hosting a serious tasting event, it’s OK to provide tasty crackers, as long as the crackers don’t overwhelm the other foods, say culinary experts. “You want to create balance,” says Christine Hyatt, chairman of the board of directors for the American Cheese Society.

See Crunchy, 44

See Charcuterie, 44

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Page 43

Charcuterie, from page 43 “Fermentation brings a new flavor experience to the table,” says Baker. He favors kimchi, the classic Korean fermented-vegetable dish, varying the recipe to use seasonal ingredients, such as cauliflower leaves in the fall. The mouth-tingling dish stands up to any meat. Now that cured meats, cheeses, crackers and condiments are on the menu, here are some tips for balanced and beautiful presentations. • Garnish cheese platters with a sprig of herbs or flowers “to keep the idea of nature,” Hastings says. • Judiciously drizzle honey on cheese. “Honey can be wonderful,” Hastings says. His book includes a very simple dish of goat cheese and roasted garlic that’s mashed to a pulp. The cheese and garlic are layered in a bowl lined with cheesecloth and chilled overnight. The combination, which is shaped like a beehive, is turned out onto a serving


dish, lightly topped with honey and accompanied with crackers. • Don’t overlook vegetables as a food carrier. Replace crackers with cucumber slices or sturdy endive leaves. • Lightly layer meats instead of heaping slices on a plate. For example, bresaola, air-dried beef, has a deep red color. Thinly sliced and arranged in overlapping pieces it looks like rose petals, Chang says. • Set out small plates or bowls as a gentle hint that the food should be tasted, not inhaled. Similarly, put condiments in small serving bowls. • Don’t feel you have to arrange picture-perfect food to entice your guests. Virant’s “The Presentation Kitchen” has an appetite-whetting photo of a charcuterie platter with coppa, fried pickled tongue, prosciutto, vanilla melon jam, pickled watermelon rind and watercress. The platter says: help yourself.

Crunchy, from page 43 Aim for a subtle contrast of flavors and textures. No one element should stand out. “When you’re serving an elegant Gruyere or Manchego or bleu cheese, you want the cracker as an accent, not to steal the show,” Hyatt says. Switch to a more flavorful herb cracker when serving a subtle goat cheese. Think about how you normally serve cheeses and meats. The condiments and flavorings you usually add can give you a clue to the appropriate crackers. If your favorite antipasto plate includes olives and salami, try olive-studded crackers. Instead of ham on sesame-seed bread, match prosciutto with sesame seed crackers. Fruit and cheese is a classic duo. A cracker with dried fruit in the dough is a variation on the theme. “Raisins are wonderful in crackers, and those concentrated sugars in raisins are a good contrast for cheese,” says cheese expert Chester Hastings. Find inspiration from flavoring ingredients in the meats and cheeses. Fennel is a traditional ingredient in sausages. How about fennel crackers with ham? You’ve probably enjoyed a spicy version of Monterey Jack cheese with chiles.

Happy Thanksgiving Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on the things for which we’re truly grateful. At Edward Jones, we’re thankful to serve our clients and our community. During this holiday season and every day, we wish you all the very best.

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Page 44

Home for the Holidays

Member SIPC

It’s Time To Make the Fancy Schmancy Doughnuts! By Bev Bennett CTW Features


ove over cupcakes. It’s time for doughnuts to take their star turn. So, bring on the sprinkles, the chocolate, the bacon. Yes, even the bacon. “People were doing interesting flavors with cupcakes. It was a matter of time before the same thing happened to doughnuts,” says Lara Ferroni, cookbook author and food photographer, Portland, Ore. However, if you still envision racks of plain, glazed doughnuts in your favorite coffee shop, stretch your imagination. You can make luscious, indulgent and extravagant doughnuts for holiday parties in no more time than it takes to bake a batch of cookies. Once you’ve mastered the basic technique, “you can put your own spin on the doughnut; make it your own,” says Mark Klebeck, a co-founder of Top Pot Doughnuts in Seattle. Create your own designer doughnuts using your favorite seasonal flavors, such as

nutmeg, peppermint, cranberry or pumpkin. Coat finished doughnuts with orange, coconut or chocolate glaze. Then, since there’s no such thing as too much, finish off your masterpiece with chopped nuts, chocolate shavings or savory bacon. Doughnuts topped with chopped walnuts and crumbled bacon is one of the tantalizing recipes in the new cookbook by Mark and Michael Klebeck, “Top Pot Hand-Forged Doughnuts.” The choices are yours. Here are some “do and dough-not” suggestions to get started. If you’re a doughnut novice, try the cake style recipes, which are easier and faster than yeast doughnuts, say the experts. Don’t make doughnuts a day in advance. For best quality, make doughnuts on party day. Cake doughnuts only take about 30 minutes to prepare and you can make them a few hours ahead of time to avoid last-minute preparation, according to Ferroni, author of “Doughnuts: Simple and Delicious Recipes to Make at Home” Resist super-sizing so your guests can sample more. “You can grab one or two and don’t feel like you have to cut up a doughnut and

share it,” Klebeck says. Do take steps to make cleanup easier. Unfortunately, frying doughnuts can be messy. Cover your stovetop with aluminum foil. Toss the spattered foil when you’re done, Klebeck says. Don’t stack glazed doughnuts. Although a doughnut tower would be an eye-catching display on the dessert table, glazed doughnuts are best arranged in a single layer so they don’t stick together. A large platter or party tray will hold a dozen doughnuts. Invite your guests to share in the fun of doughnut preparation with a DIY decorating station, Ferroni says. Set out a platter of plain doughnuts. Make a glaze and bring it warm to the table. Add a few bowls of toppings. Let guests create their own designer doughnuts. Don’t discard your leftovers. Turn the stale crumbs into truffles as Ferroni does. If you’re ready to make doughnuts from scratch, try the Klebeck sensation: a chocolate cake doughnut with peppermint icing and candy cane bits. “Mint and chocolate is an incredible combination,” he says.

House filled to the brim during the holidays? Take it easy this holiday season, let your guests stay with us. Need a great holiday gift? Purchase a Best Western travel card, good at any Best Western, available in any dollar amount!

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Page 45

Dear Santa,

Please submit your letter to Santa by December 5 to be included in the Great Bend Tribune on December 11. Send letters to: Santa Claus c/o Great Bend Tribune, PO Box 228, Great Bend, KS 67530

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Home for the Holidays



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Ace stores are independently owned and operated; offers and/or Ace Rewards benefits are available only at participating stores. The prices in this advertisement are suggested by Ace Hardware Corporation, Oak Brook, IL. Product selection/color and sale items and prices may vary by store. This advertisement may also contain clearance and closeout items and items at Ace everyday low prices. Some items may require assembly. Return and â&#x20AC;&#x153;rain checkâ&#x20AC;? policies vary by store; please see your Ace store for details. Product selection and prices at vary from those in this advertisement. Ace is not responsible for printing or typographical errors. Prices are valid November 23 through November 26, 2012, while supplies last.

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Page 47

Area Happenings November 23 Annual Christmas Lighting at the Hoisington Chamber of Commerce Santa set to arrive at 5:30 p.m. November 24 Ness City Blood Drive, 12 p.m. – 6 p.m. 302 W Nevada St, Ness City, KS Save a life by donating blood at the Red Cross blood drive. All blood types are needed and walk-ins are welcome. Call 1-800-RED-CROSS for more information. November 28 Hoisington 7th and 8th grade Winter Concert — 7 p.m. November 30 4th Annual Christmas Gala and Business after Hours –6 p.m. Auction begins at 6:30 p.m. with proceeds benefiting the Christmas Lighting program at Wilson State Bank in Hoisington.

December 3

Central Plains Elementary School Winter Program Holyrood–7 p.m.

December 16 Rush Center Potato Bar, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Rush Center, 758-372-1212 The Walnut Valley Senior Citizens of Rush Center are happy to announce they are once again offering the Potato Bar. The Potato Bar will serve baked potatoes, salad bar, dessert and drinks and will be available once a month through May. All proceeds will be used to maintain the former school building in Rush Center for the benefit of the community.

December 17

Central Plains High School Winter Program Claflin–7 p.m. Ellinwood High School Vocal Concert at St. Joseph Church–7 p.m.

Ellinwood Grade School Vocal Concert–7 p.m.

December 4

Hoisington 5th and 6th grade Winter Concert–7 p.m. Holy Family School Christmas Program–7 p.m. Prince of Peace Parish Center–4100 Broadway

December 10

Central Plains Middle School Winter Program— Bushton 7 p.m.

December 11

Hoisington High School Winter Concert — 7 p.m. December 12 Ellinwood High School Mystic Blues Caroling Day December 16 Great Bend High School Vespers Concert–GBHS Auditorium, 2 p.m. Youth Choir Concert–GBHS Auditorium, 3:30 p.m.

Page 48

December 20

Ellinwood 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th grade Winter Vocal concert 7 p.m. at the EHS auditorium.

Home for the Holidays

4 Crowd-Pleasing Holiday Dips

Avocado Goat Cheese Dip

3 ripe avocados 2 gloves minced garlic 1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste) 4 ounces cream cheese 4 ounces goat cheese 2 teaspoons lemon or lime juice 1. Mix all ingredients at once with a large spoon or hand-mixer in a medium bowl 2. Serve with blue corn chips, pretzels or crackers.

Vegan White Bean Dip

1/2 cup white beans, drained 1/2 cup garbanzo beans, drained 1/2 cup juice from either bean can 1 teaspoon xantham gum 1/4 cup vegan cheddar cheese salt and pepper to taste 1. Process in a food processor. 2. Serve with carrots, red peppers or pretzels.

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Hoisington Chamber of Commerce events

“Bringing Families Together 2012”

5:30 p.m. at the Hoisington Chamber of Commerce, 123 N. Main Christmas Carols - Free hayrack rides. Children make an outdoor Christmas Ornament to hang on the Christmas Tree.



Santa’s Hours: Saturdays Dec. 1 & 8: 1-3; Thursdays Dec. 13 & 20: – 6:30-8 p.m

Home decorating contest - Prizes awarded Call 620-653-4311 to register your home in Hoisington! Promotion Committee: Alternacare, Beck Chiropractic, Blake E. Herres D.D.S., Cardinal Lanes, Cardinal Pharmacy LLC, Cates Carquest, Cheyenne Bottoms Inn & Suites, City of Hoisington, Clara Barton Hospital, Dairy Queen Restaurant, First Class Auto Design - Signs, Banners, Etc., First Kansas Bank, Gambino’s Pizza, Hoisington Dispatch, Hoisington Floral, I.C. (Ike) Walter Enterprises, JRZ Enterprises, Kaiser’s Service, Keller Real Estate/Mirian Wilborn Sales Associate, Kindscher’s Mule Barn, Landmark National Bank, Manweiler Chevrolet Company, Meitner Cabinet and Home Repair, Mi Tierra Mexican Restaurant & Bar, Nicholson-Ricke Funeral Home, Northwestern Mutual Financial, Numbers Plus, Prairie House Flowers & Gift Shop, RSVP Thrift Store, State Farm Insurance/Kathy Burt, Sunflower Insulation, Superior Essex, Tap Room, The Body Shoppe Spa & Boutique, Town & Country Super Market, United Ag Service, Inc., Wilson State Bank

3410 10th Street • Great Bend 800-272-6068 • 620-792-6044

Home for the Holidays

Page 49

Buffalo Chicken Dip

2 chicken breasts, boiled and shredded (or 1 can of shredded chicken) 16 ounces cream cheese 1 cup ranch dressing 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 2. In a saucepan, combine cream cheese and ranch over low heat. 3. Pour mixture over chicken in a baking dish. 4. Sprinkle cheese on top. 4. Bake 30 to 40 minutes, let stand 10 minutes before serving. 5. Serve with veggies, crackers or breadsticks.

Peanut Butter Dip

1/2 cup vanilla or honey Greek yogurt 1/2 cup peanut butter (crunchy or creamy) ¼ tsp. ground cinnamon 1 tbs. brown sugar 1. Mix together in a medium bowl 2. Serve with celery, graham crackers cookies or apple slices.

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Page 50

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Home for the Holidays

Can You Support Your Charitable Deductions? Strict recordkeeping rules for 2012 returns


ear in and year out, charitable donations often provide big deductions for high-income individuals at tax return time. Deductions for charitable gifts may be claimed only by taxpayers who itemize their returns. But even itemizers are at risk if they do not have the requisite proof to back up their claims.

more. The acknowledgement must be obtained by the time you file your tax return. It should include the amount of the check or cash donated, a detailed description of any property that was donated and the value of the benefit received if any goods or services were provided. Key exception: You do not have to establish a value for “intangible religious benefits.”

Cash contributions: Under a recent tax law change, deductions for all monetary gifts, regardless of the amount, may be disallowed if the donor does not maintain either a bank record—including a canceled check, bank statement or credit card statement—or a written communication from the charity indicating the donor’s name, contribution amount and date of the contribution. Technically, this covers everything from million dollar grants made to a college or hospital to the spare change donated during the holiday season.

Contributions made through payroll deductions may be substantiated by pay stubs or a W-2 form. Note: Substantiation is not required if the donee organization files a return with the IRS providing the information to be included in an acknowledgement.

Contributions of $250 or more: The IRS also requires charitable donors to obtain a written acknowledgement from a charitable organization for gifts of $250 or

Quid pro quo contributions: If you make a “quid pro quo” contribution (i.e., a contribution made partially or fully in exchange for goods or services) for an amount more than $75, you must obtain a good faith estimate from the charity detailing the value of the benefit received. For example, say you attend a fundraising dinner where the tickets cost $100 apiece and the dinner is valued at $40. The charity must provide a written state-

ment limiting the deductible amount to $60 per ticket. However, a written statement from a charity is not required if you receive token goods, minimal services or intangible religious benefits in exchange for your donation. There are a few other points to keep in mind. For example, if you gave charitable gifts of property exceeding $500 in 2012, additional information must be attached to your tax return. If your donation for noncash property exceeds $5,000, you are also required to provide an independent appraisal of the property’s value. Note: The cost of the appraisal is deductible as a miscellaneous itemized deduction (subject to the usual tax law limits for miscellaneous expenses). In summary: These recordkeeping rules will keep you on your toes. However, as long as you have the proper documentation, you should be able to claim legitimate deductions for charitable donations on your 2012 return. Seek assistance from a tax professional. Article provided courtesy of Adams, Brown, Beran and Ball.

NEED HELP NAVIGATING YOUR TAX MAZE? Let Adams, Brown, Beran & Ball be your guide. In today’s rapidly changing environment, it is important to find a group of qualified and experienced professionals who can help guide you and your organization through the countless tax challenges standing in your path. Fortunately, Adams, Brown, Beran & Ball’s tax professionals can assist. We provide a complete range of individual and business tax services, including business structure planning, retirement and estate planning, succession planning and federal and state return preparation. Our knowledgeable CPAs can address even the most complex tax challenges, and in the process, eliminate your headaches and risks. For more information about our firm or services, please contact us at 620-792-2428. Bank of America Building 2006 Broadway Ave., Suite 2A P.O. Drawer J Great Bend, Kansas 67530-4043 Phone: (620)792-2428

Home for the Holidays

Page 51

Charity begins at home, in Great Bend


by Veronica Coons

t is the personal thoughtfulness, the warm human awareness, the reaching out of the self to one’s fellow man that makes giving worthy of the Christmas spirit. - Isabel

Currier For many families, Christmas isn’t only a time for gift giving and receiving around the living room Christmas tree. Its a time for being gracious and charitable to others. Giving helps fill the gaps in our fellowmen’s lives, and it helps fill a space in our own hearts that yearns to connect with others and make a difference. While some give international organizations, others prefer to give locally. Throughout Great Bend there are many ways to reach out and help brighten the holidays for others with fewer resources.

Hear the Bells a Ringing The Salvation Army Christmas kettle campaign is the organization’s major fundraiser, bringing in about 88% of the yearly budget, said William “Bill” Dill, coordinator of the 2012 bell-ringing campaign. Throughout the holidays, kettles will be set up in several locations around Great Bend, Hoisington and Ellinwood. In Great Bend, they will be at the two entrances of Walmart, both Dillons stores, Waters True Value, Walgreens and JC Penney. Dill says he can use as many volunteers has he can get. “I try to fill every spot from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.,” he said. “We don’t do anything on Sundays, as we are a Christian based or-

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ganization. Paid bell-ringers work around volunteers’ schedules, filling in where needed.” The Salvation Army is a member of the United Way of Central Kansas, working hand-in-hand with other local agencies, Dill said. The organization helps people in need in the community with utility and rent assistance, financial assistance with prescriptions, lodging for the stranded or bereaved, and other social service programs like fire and disaster relief. They also help fund back-to-school backpack program at the beginning of each school year and a summer camp program for disadvantaged youth. The Salvation Army provided 464 backpacks to area youth in 2011, and 424 in 2012. “We’re hoping to bring that figure back up again and are shooting for 500 in 2013,” Dill said. Summer camp lasts for four days, and transportation is provided to and from the Kansas City area for local youth. “The camp is absolutely beautiful, and the kids have a great time,” he said. The Salvation Army also helps with gifts-in-kind which helps people get their lives back on track after experiencing work or home related setbacks. People starting a new job, in need of appropriate clothing can find help there. People who have found themselves homeless for a period and in need of outfitting a new home can also turn to the Salvation Army for some of the things they need. Recently, the organization helped a family that moved into a home, only to find a few days later it was infested with insects. They had to leave all their belongings behind, and were able to turn to the organization to replace some of

what they had. “We can help once every 12 months,” Dill said. “We don’t have unlimited resources, but we do as much as we can.” Bell ringers are critical to the success of the program, Dill said. So much so, if there is a shortage of volunteers, Dill hires paid bell-ringers to fill in the gaps. Kettles need to be manned from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. from Nov. 17 until 6 p.m. Christmas Eve. Volunteers with the United Way will help kick off the campaign on Saturday, Nov. 17 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the entrances to Walmart and Dillons. Its part of a friendly competition between offices of the United Way of Central Kansas, he said. The organization does not man kettles on Sundays or on Thanksgiving day. “That’s family time,” he said. Shifts can vary in length, depending on the time a volunteer can offer, from one hour to four or more. Reliability is very important, Dill said, because if someone doesn’t show up, he or a paid employee needs to fill-in. Most people, he said, make the effort to be there. Bell ringers who are 16 or older can work alone. If under 16, they need to be accompanied by someone over 16 and sign a waiver. Other than that, anybody who wants to help is eligible. It helps to be outgoing and friendly, and unafraid to be out in the cold. “Last year, during a snowstorm, we had an 84 year-old man in Ellinwood who showed up and worked his whole shift outside,” Dill said. “Of course, I couldn’t let him outdo me, so I had to do it too.” See Charity, 54

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Charity, from page 52 For those who can’t be in cold but still want to help, Dill said volunteers can be scheduled to work inside at JC Penney, or they can forego ringing the bell and simply greet shoppers in the foyer at Walmart. Access to a vehicle is not required for volunteers, but is helpful. So far, several organizations have signed up to help, including the cub scouts and boy scouts. Some young people fulfill community service requirements for school or teen court by volunteering. Its a fun way for families to come together and give of their time during the holidays too, Dill said. Last year, a family from St. John spent the day volunteering together, and a principal at a local elementary school and his three year-old daughter took a shift ringing bells. To volunteer, stop into the Salvation Army store at 2545 10th Street during business hours and sign up, or contact Dill at (620)792-4299. After hours, he can be reached at (620)282-7836.

Angel Tree Farmers Bank and Trust in Great Bend will once again have “angel” trees in the lobbies of both their Main Street and their 10th Street locations starting November 15, said Vice President Karesa Harrison. It’s all part of the 21st annual Light Up a Child’s Life Christmas program. Over the years, due to the generosity of the community and volunteer efforts of the bank staff, Christmas cheer has been brought to thousands of families who find themselves without resources. Working with several agencies, the bank collects the names and wish lists of area children. All identifying information is kept confidential, but individuals, groups and businesses who want to participate can find out about a child and adopt one or more from the “angel” tree. For those who prefer to simply make a donation, bank staff will shop for additional gifts, ensuring every child is cared for during the holidays. “By adopting a child, the “angels” agree to shop for the recipient and bring the gifts to the bank,” Harrison said. Volunteers then wrap them and prepare them for distribution. In the past, bank employees used to deliver them to the recipients. As the program has grown, recipients are contacted and invited to come to the bank to pick up gifts.

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Toys for Tots

Hungry Hearts soup kitchen

For families looking for a hands-on way to give this Christmas season, The Men could use a hand with wrapping hundreds of gifts for Toys for Tots. Toys for Tots is part of a nationwide effort by the U.S. Marines Corps Reserve to make sure less fortunate children ages 12 and under can receive a new toy for Christmas. In communities without a Reserve Unit, the campaign can be conducted by a group of men and women, generally veteran Marines, authorized by Marine Toys for Tots Foundation to conduct a local Toys for Tots campaign. In Great Bend, that group is The Men Motorcycle Club. Member Luie Philbern is the Local Toys for Tots Campaign coordinator in charge of organizing the 2012 annual toy drive. It will be the 31st year Great Bend has participated, he said. The Men kicked off their campaign in October with the annual Toys for Tots parade with over 125 riders who carried new, unwrapped toys through the streets of Great Bend to the American Legion Hall where they will be stored until Dec. 15. On that day, at 1 p.m. at the American Legion Hall at 1011 Kansas Street, they and several volunteers will wrap the gifts that will be distributed locally, as well as to other Barton County towns, and areas of need throughout the state, Philbern said. “Last year, we provided gifts for 500 kids,” he said. So far, the community has been very generous, he said, and the group has not had to solicit last minute donations. Philbern said the group welcomes any and all the volunteers they can get to help with the wrapping. This year, they received a generous donation of wrapping paper, however, they could still use ink pens and scotch tape. “The American Legion Riders have pitched in with a lot of help, and have donated use of their building for the last three years for the wrapping,” Philbern said. Toy donations may be brought to the Salvation Army store on 10th Street in Great Bend, clearly labeled “Toys for Tots”, or they can contact Philbern at (620)791-7615, and arrange for one of The Men to come pick up the donation.

The Hungry Hearts soup kitchen serves a hot lunch Monday through Friday from 11:30 to 12:30 every day of the year. They mostly serve adults, though during the summer and during holidays, they see more children. They serve from 50 to 90 people each day from their location at 1515 Williams Street, in the building directly north of The Life Giving Center, with more arriving from the 15th to the 30th of the month than during the first half of the month. “Usually they see larger numbers between the 15th and the 30th of each month. By the first of the month it slows down again,” Garcia said. “The majority are on assistance like food stamps.” The doors are open, however, to anyone who wants or needs a hot meal, she said. “I worry sometimes that many people feel like they can’t come and have a meal here because they aren’t homeless,” she said. “The soup kitchen is here for anybody whose grocery budget would benefit from having a free meal.” The soup kitchen is one of three services provided by Lasting Life ministries. They also provide financial assistance for rent and utilities, and provide clothing for those in need and household items to assist those coming out of homelessness to get started once again, Garcia said. On a normal day, the soup kitchen is open from 11:30 to 12:30, with four to five people helping. Three employees and one or two volunteers who are fulfilling community service requirements normally fill out the staff. On Thanksgiving, they will be open from 11:00 to 1:00 and will serve two to three times as many people than usual. Then there is the Christmas holiday meal. This year, Garcia would like to do something special for children. Recently, Lasting Life ministries received a large donation of stuffed animals, and she would like to fill stockings for kids with them. To volunteer or to make a donation of money, clothing or household items, contact Amanda Garcia at (620) 617-6610. These are only a few of the organizations that can use your donations of time, talent or treasure. Local churches, schools, and civic groups can also benefit from your generous spirit. Keep your eyes, ears, and hearts open for an opportunity, and may your days be filled with joy and peace throughout the Christmas season.

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