Nutley Holiday Gift Guide - Dec 2021

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Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP — December 2021 — 1

Holiday Gift Guide 2021 Gift your child with tech safely this holiday season Are you wondering if this is the right year to gift your child a smartphone for the holidays? While age may seem important, maturity levels play a big role in letting you know if your child is ready to handle the responsibility of owning a connected device. It’s always important to weigh the pros and cons. The benefits of a smartphone and internet access are that they offer a wealth of educational opportunities for students. Children are early adopters of the latest technology and in many cases, can absorb and digest information more easily and much nore quickly than adults. The downside is that children have access to everything on the internet, including potentially inappropriate content. The good news is that there are many safety and monitoring apps and tools available, some at low or no cost to you. For example, T-Mobile offers Family Mode, an app that allows the primary account holder to monitor a child’s internet access when the app is downloaded on the device. T-Mobile also offers Family Allowances, an app that for a small

the ability to monitor your child’s web activity, limit daily phone access, and approve or decline downloadable app purchases. You can also check with your internet provider or wireless smartphone provider to see what child safety features are available with your current plan. If your child isn’t quite ready for a phone, but you still want to have the ability to monitor and communicate with them, a connected smartwatch may be the next best option. T-Mobile recently launched SyncUP KIDS Watch, which features real-time location tracking, talk and text with approved contacts only, virtual boundary alerts, silent mode to use during school, and a help button that alerts preset emergency contacts when pushed. It has safety feature that parents want, but is also fun for kids, with a camera to snap and record moments, plus interactive games. To learn more, visit Photo Courtesy of YakobchukOlena / iStock via Getty Images Plus Having safety tools and features availmonthly fee, allows you to assign their devices during certain times of the able at the swipe of your fingertips will put allowances for the number of minutes, day, such as school, during homework, your mind at ease and help create healthy texts, downloaded content and money dinner time or at night. habits when your child navigates the digispent on downloadable apps. It also Google Family Link is another option tal world, with or without you around. allows you to block your child’s use of that is free of cost and provides you with — StatePoint

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Holiday Gift Guide 2021 Five ways to protect your holiday season budget It may be the season of cheer, but for many, the holidays are rife with anxiety about expenses. A recent survey shows that staying on budget is Americans’ top concern this holiday season, followed by incurring long-term debt, shipping costs and being charged late or hidden fees. Here are five tips to protect your holiday budget: 1. Set a spending cap with friends and family. Americans plan to spend $998 on gifts this holiday season, according to the National Retail Federation. ’Tis the season for giving, but make sure you don’t overspend. Know your budget upfront and communicate that with loved ones. Another idea to limit spending is to put everyone’s name into a hat. Each person draws one name and buys a gift for just the person they selected. You can add a bit of intrigue by keeping the identity of your recipient a secret until you open gifts. 2. Take advantage of deal days. Timing is everything for getting the best prices. Do your homework in advance to pay significantly less. The typical big sales days include Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which offers online deals focused on

tomer’s home if the business permanently closes within a year after purchase. Reimbursement coverage is limited to $500 per policy period. 4. Track when products are discounted with a browser extension. Do you want the best deals but don’t have the time to spend searching for them? There are extensions you can download on web browsers that will compare prices and even apply the best coupon codes at checkout. 5. Use credit card rewards. You’ve earned those points throughout the year and now is a great time to cash them in. The simplest way to use points is for gift cards, as it’s one of the top requested gifts and there are many categories to choose from, including restaurants, clothing and Photo Courtesy of juliannafunk / iStock via Getty Images Plus grocery stores. Another option is to take clothing and travel. Plus, Super Saturday those still struggling during the ongoing advantage of the money saved from a before Christmas is great for last-minute pandemic. Erie Insurance is taking away statement credit to cover the expense of gifts. that concern with gift card reimburse- holiday gifts. Being mindful of your spending now 3. Purchase gift cards with peace of ment coverage, which is provided to cermind. Gift cards are a popular, convenient tain eligible homeowners at no additional can help you have a low-stress holiday gift, but some would-be buyers may hesi- charge. The coverage provides reimburse- season and start the new year off on the tate to purchase them out of fear that the ment for up to $250 per gift card at local right foot. — StatePoint business may end up closing, especially businesses within 100 miles of a cus-



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4 — December 2021 — Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP

Holiday Gift Guide 2021 Top birthday gift ideas for the person who has it all

Photo Courtesy of Ross and Helen Photographers

fun by sharing it on social media too. And because SmashUps is a one-time fee, you can shower relatives or friends with personalized messages that will make them smile all year. Custom gifts show true thoughtfulness and can make someone feel extra special on their birthday. Smashups are a fun and lighthearted way to virtually say “happy birthday” to friends, family members and co-workers. 3. Something they’ve always wanted. Difficult to shop for people often have birthday gift ideas for themselves or items they’ve always wanted that they’ll never buy or

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We all have someone who has more than enough clothes, jewelry, artwork and overall “stuff,” that you just don’t know where to begin finding a gift they’ll need or want. The next time you need to come up with a clever birthday gift idea for them, try one of the following categories: 1. Something they’ll use. Nowadays, there’s a good chance there’s a subscription box filled with items your recipient needs or will always use, from clothes, snacks and razors, to tools, toys and pet supplies. For example, if your friend picks up wine every time they grocery shop, a subscription to a monthly wine club won’t go to waste. In fact, it will probably be an appreciated gift! Many boxes offer flexibility for the red, white or rose-all-day person’s preferences and include additions each month. 2. Something personalized. If you’re in search of creative birthday gift ideas, consider giving a custom gift. This might sound like a pricey approach, but customization can be as simple as sending a fun, personalized ecard. With SmashUps from American Greetings, you can start by selecting a fully customizable video featuring some favorite famous faces, including Dolly Parton, Shaq and Alicia Keys. Next, you can personalize the video with a name and other custom elements, so the celebrity is singing directly to your loved one. Finally, you can instantly share the video with the birthday guy or gal by text or email, or you can let other friends join in on the

request. Maybe it’s a high-ticket item or maybe it’s something simple that other purchases just get prioritized over. If you know of such an item, consider giving it as a gift! Your friend will feel good receiving a gift from someone who was listening and understands them. 4. Something they didn’t know they needed. Sometimes, you can’t put your finger on a practical item that you know the person will use and have to use your best judgment. Though it could be as simple as a mug or digital picture frame, these are often the best gifts of all, because the people receiving them likely never thought of them either. 5. Something that requires thought. If the person you’re shopping for has a lot of “stuff,” stop thinking of additional items to give them. Shift your focus and gift them your time or attention. If it’s a significant other, plan a special date night on the town or in the house. If it’s a parent or grandparent, consider what experiences or events they might appreciate; maybe its going to a play, watching a movie or taking a trip as a family. Not all gifts have to cost a lot; in fact, some of the best gifts are ones that create memories. For more clever birthday gift ideas and ways to celebrate, visit: When it comes birthday gifts for those who have everything, don’t fret. With a bit of creativity, you can make their day special. — StatePoint

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6 — December 2021 — Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP

Holiday Gift Guide 2021 Ease the pain of holiday shipping with these tips Holiday plans may look different again this year. Some families will choose to host small gatherings, while others may celebrate from the comfort of home instead of traveling. If you won’t be spending the holidays with loved ones — and if this season is anything like 2020 — you’ll likely be shipping gifts. Here’s how to ensure a timely, damagefree arrival. Be aware of shipping deadlines Each year, the United States Postal Service and other major shipping companies release deadlines to help people plan timely delivery of packages during their busiest season of the year. Whether you’ll manually ship gifts or order them online, prioritizing these deadlines is key. Give yourself ample time. Aim to have packages shipped about 10 to 12 days before the holiday. The USPS recommends no later than Dec. 15, 2021, for ground shipping. Invest in a quality box While it may be tempting to use any old box you have hanging out in the garage, worn-down boxes are much more likely to crumple in-transit. Additionally, if the package is too big for its contents, you risk things rolling or shaking; if it’s too small, you risk tearing and breaking. With this in mind, consider investing in new, quality boxes, like Duck Brand Kraft Box. They are cost-effective, made from recycled, durable materials, and are available in a variety of sizes, all of which meet postal regulations, so you can pick the best fit that protects from damage, while keeping shipping costs down.

Pick proper packing tape If you’re going to invest in shipping supplies, don’t forget to include a strong, easy-to-use packing tape. Lower-quality options may lead to splitting or tearing, which is a recipe for disaster when shipping holiday presents — or even for storing decor until next year. Duck Max Strength Packing Tape offers premium quality and tough adhesion to keep boxes and packages secure during shipping. Stronger and more durable than ordinary tapes, this packing tape is designed to seal even the heaviest boxes safely and securely to help prevent items inside from being damaged during delivery.

Add an extra layer of protection Handle fragile packages with extra care by including the all-important layer of bubble cushioning. Bubble Wrap–brand cushioning easily conforms around treasured objects and helps prevent shifts and damage during shipping. The product’s air lock technology maintains consistent, light-as-air cushioning while filling empty voids in boxes, so items stay put. For best protection, make sure the bubbles are facing your gift to cushion impact. Personalize the package If you prefer a greener option, Flourish Brand Kraft Paper is protective, versatile and sustainable. Made from 100-percent recycled material, the shipping paper can be easily added to standard curbside recycling bins. Plus, it makes it easy to wrap up and ship out large boxes, and can be used to fill packaging voids, so items stay in place. Or, as a fun indoor activity throughout winter, kids may enjoy using Kraft Paper to create customized, DIY wrapping paper. Other special touches to your long-distance holiday delivery could be including a thoughtful note or adding a drop of essential oil to the ribbon. The holidays can be stressful. When you plan ahead and have the proper supplies on-hand, you’ll be able to quickly cross “ship holiday gifts” off your to-do list and enjoy the magic of the season. — StatePoint

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Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP — December 2021 — 7

Entertain for less money The holiday season brings an abundance of feelings that may include joy, comfort, gratitude and, unfortunately, stress. Don’t let the task of entertaining friends and family break the bank or your back. Instead, create memorable gatherings with loved ones while saving time and money in the process using these hosting tips from the experts at Dollar General: Photo Courtesy of Deagreez / iStock via Getty Images Plus Delicate decor Creating the right ambiance in your space is key to holiday decorating success. Begin by decluttering the areas of your home where you plan to entertain. Fill the extra spaces with seasonal decorations. Remember, elaborate, expensive items aren’t always needed to make a home look amazing. Decorations like small figurines, bowls filled with holiday candy or simple wreaths and garlands can do the trick of transforming your home into a winter wonderland! Fruitful food With more guests comes more food, but it doesn’t have to mean spending more money. Shopping at discount retailers for essentials such as milk, eggs, bread and cheese can help stretch your budget. You can also make the switch to private brand items and save even more when buying foods for overnight guests, such as granola bars, cereal and snacks. Consider purchasing these household basics from a local Dollar General store, which also provides digital coupons to help you save even more. Supplies stock-up Of course, to entertain, you will need supplies. Stocking up on cleaning essentials, everyday cooking ingredients and entertaining basics early in the season is a great way to have everything needed before the party begins. Consider adding items such as trash bags, cutlery, paper products, other decorations and even small gifts. By using smart shopping strategies, you can entertain during the holidays with ease instead of stress. — StatePoint

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Holiday Gift Guide 2021 Tech to the rescue: options to save consumers’ time Despite increased digital options, the typical consumer still spends 13 hours on hold each year! And of course, there are plenty of things that most people would rather be doing with that time, particularly during the busy holiday season. According to a new survey conducted by Clickatell, a mobile communications and chat commerce company, all of those 13 hours are hours people would rather be spending with family, relaxing or even doing chores. The same survey also revealed that waiting on hold isn’t just annoying for consumers, it can have a negative effect on brands too. Of those surveyed, 31 percent said even spending 5 to 9 minutes on hold can lead to negative feelings toward a brand, and 23 percent said they are completely likely to give up on a purchase or brand if they fail to meet them on their preferred communication channel. “Retailers and businesses need to more broadly ensure that they’re providing an adequate experience for all customers,” said Jennifer Shambroom, chief marketing officer at Clickatell. According to Clickatell experts, here are some of the strategies that companies can adopt to create better experiences for their customers this holiday season and beyond: • Turn consumers’ irritable hold times into helpful conversations with an end-to-end chat solution that enables live agents to communicate with customers over popular chat apps.

Photo Courtesy of GaudiLab / iStock via Getty Images Plus

• Fifty percent of millennials have already communicated with a business via chat apps in the past and 71 percent use chat apps at least daily. Incorporate a payment link in chat apps, such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger to enable customers to pay for a purchase where

they are already spending their time. For example, Clickatell’s new Chat 2 Pay solution allows businesses to send consumers a chat message containing a web link that easily takes them through the checkout process. They don’t have to disclose credit card details over the phone or use a point-of-sale device. • Respond to customers 24/7 with chat communication in a contact center that uses a combination of both AI and human respondents. • Use ongoing and cumulative data resources to understand how and when customers prefer to communicate — via email, SMS, phone, etc. • Employ marketing strategies that provide customers with personalized product recommendations that fit their wants and needs. This will require analyzing customers’ behaviors and promoting products based on assumptions and their past purchase histories. To learn more about the solutions businesses are using to provide better customer service, visit “During the hectic holiday season, customers don’t want to spend their time on hold — they want to spend it enjoying their personal time off with their families. Thanks to new tech solutions, businesses have the ability to deliver that for customers, while simultaneously helping build brand loyalty in the process. It’s a win-win for all,” said Shambroom. — StatePoint

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Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP — December 2021 — 9

Add music to your holidays Music is powerful. Here is how to include music in your holiday celebrations to set a joyful, festive mood and help create happy family memories. 1. Whistle while you work: Decking the halls shouldn’t be a chore. It should be a fun holiday tradition. Create a playlist of all your favorite carols, old standards and pop-infused holiday hits. As you adorn the tree, decorate the cookies and hang the stockings, pop on your playlist to fill the house with your personalized sounds of the season. 2. Create your own music: With more time off from school and work and a treasure trove of seasonal music to draw inspiration from, this can actually be the ideal time of year to take up a new instrument or embark on music lessons. For beginners, consider a Castiotone. User-friendly and created with the goal of making music fun for players of all abilities, it connects to the Chordana Play App, which offers interactive, at home, beginner piano lessons. Plus the keyboard features built-in Christmas carols, perfect for sing-alongs! And because it’s portable, you can “gather round the piano” wherever you spend the holidays. 3. Go caroling: Caroling is one of best ways to spread holiday cheer among neighbors and members of your community. Organize friends and family to join you. You may even consider turning your efforts into a fundraiser for a local charity or a music-related nonprofit such as

Photo Courtesy of Deagreez / iStock via Getty Images Plus

Music & Memory, which helps individuals with cognitive and physical conditions engage with the world and ease pain through their favorite music. 4. Attend a performance: From “The Nutcracker” to “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” there are many classic holiday performances staged at theaters all around the country. Enjoy a live show or watch your favorite seasonal musicals at home. Through the power of listening and creating your own music, you can fill your seasonal traditions with joy and make happy holiday memories that last for years to come. — StatePoint

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10 — December 2021 — Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP

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12 — December 2021 — Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP

Holiday Gift Guide 2021 Protect children by steering clear of knockoff toys In the scramble to get your hands on the toys your children want this holiday season, experts warn that you should prioritize safety by sticking to age-appropriate toys and by avoiding counterfeit alternatives at all costs. “Illicit sellers of counterfeit toys may dupe parents into thinking they’re buying the real thing, or entice them with lower prices or the promise of getting the ‘hot toy’ of the holiday season,” said Joan Lawrence, The Toy Association’s “Toy Safety Mom” and senior vice president of standards and regulatory affairs. “What’s scary is that these illegitimate sellers are actually peddling fake and unsafe products that oftentimes don’t comply with product safety laws. That’s why we always urge parents to shop from reputable brands and sellers whose toys have been tested for compliance with over 100 different safety standards and tests required by law.” With the shipping crisis predicted to have widespread impacts on the availability of this holiday season’s most popular toys, counterfeits are likely to be even more enticing. And new research conducted by OnePoll on behalf of The Toy Association suggests that consumers are not always as vigilant as they should be, with 65 percent of parents saying they would purchase knockoff or counterfeit toys if they couldn’t get their hands on the original item and 63 percent indicating they would buy counterfeits if they were cheaper. Indeed 1 in 10 parents are not even aware that counterfeit toys can be dangerous for children to play with.

Photo Courtesy of Nattakorn Maneerat / iStock via Getty Images Plus

As you go about looking to snag a hot toy this holiday season, steer clear of counterfeit toys that are not safe or appropriate for your child by following these tips from 1. Shop only from reputable brands and sellers. Their toys have been tested for compliance with more than 100 different safety standards and tests required by law. 2. Make sure the brand you’re purchasing from has a professional-looking website. Can’t find a website? That may be a red flag that you are dealing with an illicit seller.

3. If a product’s reviews are negative, or if there aren’t many, it’s a clue the product could be a fake. 4. Poorly photoshopped pictures, typos or spelling mistakes in the online description or packaging are other clues that the product could be illegitimate, and therefore unsafe. 5. Can’t find a toy on your child’s wish list? Wait for a trusted retailer to restock the product. Buying fake or cheaper alternatives is just not worth the risk. In addition to avoiding knockoff toys, helping ensure your child’s safety during the gift-giving season also means shopping for toys only appropriate for their age. According to The Toy Association survey, 76 percent of parents read age recommendations on toy packaging before purchasing. However, 40 percent admitted they view age labels on toys as suggestions instead of a warning, and 68 percent would give their child a toy recommended for older children. Be sure to follow age recommendations on toy packaging, which are not mere suggestions but firm recommendations made by safety experts and based on childhood developmental stages. For more safe shopping tips, visit, a premier toy safety resource site. “With your vigilance, you can keep the merriest time of year happy, healthy and joyful by ensuring your child doesn’t unwrap a potential safety hazard,” said Lawrence. — StatePoint


Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP — December 2021 — 13

The Right Environment Photo Courtesy of Jakob Owens – Unsplash

The do’s and don’ts of giving a puppy as a gift Thinking of surprising a friend or family member with a puppy this holiday season? “Before gifting someone with a commitment that lasts well beyond the holidays, make sure you’ve made your list and checked it twice,” said Claire Komorowski, chief executive officer of PuppySpot, a USDA-licensed company whose mission

is to make lives better by placing healthy puppies into happy homes. Having introduced more than 200,000 puppies to loving homes, PuppySpot encourages potential dog owners to make responsible decisions this holiday season and are offering the following do’s and don’ts to help. See MAKE, Page 15

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14 — December 2021 — Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP

Holiday Gift Guide 2021 Unique holiday gift ideas for everyone on your list One of the best ways to ensure you give thoughtful, meaningful holiday gifts is by consulting gift guides that offer unique ideas for everyone on your list. Whether you’re shopping for a fashionista or an athlete, get inspired to make the holiday season brighter for your loved ones with the following ideas: • For book worms: Give the book worms in your life a gift that keeps on giving with a three-month, six-month or 12month subscription to Book of the Month. Membership can be tailored, as users can pick from five popular selections every month, select one or more books at a time, or even defer their choice until the following month. • For music makers: Regardless of their skill level, musicians deserve a powerful, portable and versatile keyboard. Designed for music lovers who enjoy playing anytime, anywhere, the Casiotone CT-S1 has a sleek design 9-pound design, features strap pins and can be powered with six AA batteries, making it a great choice for those in bands and other performers. Aside from its portability, its stereo grand piano sound, 61 full-size keys with touch

• For fashionistas: Great accessories can complete any outfit. For those who appreciate a stylish, clean design without compromising functionality, consider the stainless steel Edifice EFSS570DC-1A from Casio, which features a slim case and modern gray octagonal bezel with soft yellow accents. With solar power capabilities, water resistance up to 100 meters and a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, as well as features that include a date display, stopwatch and three dials to display seconds, stopwatch minutes and stopwatch seconds, this will become your gift recipient’s go-to timepiece no matter the occasion. • For athletes: From CrossFitters to marathoners to triathletes, all those who Photo Courtesy of Prostock-Studio / iStock via Getty Images Plus work out hard know that protein is essential for repairing muscles. Simplify your response, plus 60 other AiX-powered stu- ing their skills and experts alike. dio-quality tones, means this instrument • For pet parents: Whether your loved favorite athletes’ post-workout refueling looks as good as it sounds. Wired or wire- one’s pet is cuddly or not, they can snug- sessions and boost their recovery with a lessly, users can also link the keyboard to gle up to their animal friend with a per- High Protein Fitness Box from gift snack Casio’s dedicated Chordana Play, an app sonalized pet pillow from Get Photo Blan- box e-tailer, Bunny James. With a little inspiration you, can spoil that enables tempo and key changes in ket. Simply upload an image of the pet, addition to displaying music scores and a and the site will create a custom throw loved ones with unique gift ideas that piano roll. These features are great tools pillow — the perfect decor for adoring pet show you care this holiday season. — StatePoint for those learning to play, those expand- parents.




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Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP — December 2021 — 15

Make a list and check it twice before giving a pup (Continued from Page 13) Don’t: 1. Surprise your friend, partner or spouse unless they’ve openly communicated that they’re ready to take on the commitment and can prepare for the puppy’s arrival. 2. Wait too long to start looking if you know this is something you and your family want for the holidays. 3. Try and cut costs. Healthy, well-bred puppies can be expensive. If you see something that seems too good to be true, it probably is. 4. Expect a puppy to arrive fully-trained and well-behaved. Puppies can be mischievous and require a lot of time and attention. Do: 1. Leave plenty of time for the entire process, you don’t want to rush selecting the right pup for you. 2. Realize your puppy may not arrive at the exact moment you had hoped for. These are living, breathing animals that require stops and care along their journey. They are not a warehouse package. 3. Plan to be home for the holidays to acclimate your puppy. Be sure to consider what happens when the holiday excitement dies down. Puppies need a great deal of attention, especially during their first year.

‘Before gifting someone with a commitment that lasts well beyond the holidays, make sure you’ve made your list and checked it twice.’ — Claire Komorowski 4. Use reputable services, like PuppySpot, which is authorized by the American Kennel Club and has its own independent scientific advisory board that collaborates with the USDA to ensure all national standards are exceeded. To learn more about PuppySpot and its promise to connect the nation’s top breeders to caring, responsible pet owners, visit While there is perhaps no more joyful holiday surprise than a puppy, this is one gift that should never be given lightly. By weighing the decision carefully, you can ensure that a puppy’s new home is their fur-ever home. — StatePoint

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16 — December 2021 — Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP

Create a game plan for smart holiday shopping

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Health and safety, shipping delays, and a constrained budget — these are just some of the concerns that may be amplifying your shopping stress this holiday season. A new consumer sentiment survey centered on the holiday season can help you know what to expect in the coming weeks so you can make a smart shopping game plan. The Sensormatic Solutions survey finds that more people plan to shop instore this year over last and plan to get started earlier. Indeed, while 63 percent of U.S. consumers are concerned about shopping in-store, this isn’t stopping them from taking advantage of annual deal days or visiting enclosed malls. In fact, 50 percent of U.S. consumers still plan to shop in-store during Black Friday weekend and 50 percent will start their holiday shopping before November, compared to 43 percent in winter 2020. Despite many consumers indicating that they plan to hold fast to the traditional shopping experience, the survey also finds that a growing number of consumers are adopting newer shopping methods. This is in part because of the convenience these services offer. For example, 42 percent of those surveyed say they’ll use “buy online, pick-up in store” services for their holiday shopping, a 9-percent increase

‘We expect more contactless checkouts and unified commerce services like (buy online, pick-up in store) and curbside pickup this holiday season because health and safety is paramount.’ — Kim Melvin from 2020, and 44 percent say they’ll use curbside pickup, a 12-percent increase from 2020. Popularized during the pandemic to help people adhere to social distancing guidelines, these fulfillment options are great alternatives to brickand-mortar shopping. “We expect more contactless checkouts and unified commerce services like (buy online, pick-up in store) and curbside pickup this holiday season because health See SHOP, Page 17

Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP — December 2021 — 17

Shop safely by having a plan in place ahead of time (Continued from Page 16) and safety is paramount,” said Kim Melvin, global leader of marketing, Sensormatic Solutions, which is helping retailers solve complex challenges related to consumer confidence, health and safety as part of Johnson Controls’ mission. As you check all your items off your

holiday shopping list, consider the following tips from Sensormatic Solutions: • Avoid busy stores and crowds by starting your shopping early. • Take advantage of annual deal days without navigating in-store traffic or risking online shipping delays by using unified commerce services like buy online,

pick-up in store and curbside pickup. • Forty-five percent of U.S. consumers said store occupancy limits preventing overcrowding would make them feel more confident shopping in-store this holiday season. If that describes you, take your business to stores adhering to occupancy limits and practicing other safety measures. The good news is that businesses have a lot of tools in their toolbox. New

technologies are helping retailers understand expected shopper patterns so they can implement in-store strategies to better service their customers. For more holiday season shopping insights, visit As we enter the second holiday season of the pandemic, smart strategies can help you get your shopping done safely and with ease. — StatePoint

Warm their hearts with this charming country scene of a father and daughter with their holiday horse. This glowing Thomas Kinkade keepsake is hand-painted, hand-sculpted, and surrounded by gorgeous red roses and fresh winter greens.

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18 — December 2021 — Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP

Prep your home for guests

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Cooler temperatures, outings to the Christmas tree farm, game nights and holiday feasts. Now that the holiday season is here, it’s time to prep your home for seasonal fun! Whether you’re hosting a big or small group of family and friends this holiday season, decorating and decluttering around the house can make party prep easier and more enjoyable for everyone. With that in mind, here are some top tips to create functional and stylish spaces that are easy to keep clean and tidy throughout the festivities. Delightful decor. Make any room feel warm and welcoming with EasyLiner Removable Adhesive Shelf Liner by Duck Brand. Decorating with laminate is an affordable way to add pops of color to a kitchen backsplash, reading nook or old side table. Choose a print that matches your style and easily stick the laminate to smooth, flat surfaces for a fresh new look that will wow your guests. Mudroom without messy floors. Preparing an area near your entryway for bags and shoes is a must when expecting visitors. If you have a bench with storage, add machine-washable liner to the cubby to keep shelves clean and dry. Placing liner by the entrance of your home will also offer extra space to store muddy or wet shoes and stop salt and snow from tracking into the house. When guests leave, toss the liner in the wash and reuse. Spotless spaces for kids. All holiday

gatherings need a space for kids to have fun and play together. While setting up for arts and crafts, line the table with a clear, textured liner to prevent crayons, markers or glue from damaging surfaces. When it’s time to clean up, simply wipe the liner or toss it in the dishwasher. Get your guest room ready. If you have family staying overnight, it’s time to get your guest room in shape. Dress up drawers and closet shelves with Smooth Top EasyLiner. The grip bottom will keep the liner and items in place. Trendy patterns will elevate your home decor and guests will appreciate how clean and homey the space feels during their stay. Bathroom basics. Once you’re done prepping the guest room, don’t forget about the guest bathroom. Keep styling stations and the bath clean and tidy with shelf liner and a bath mat. Duck Brand offers a variety of cushioned, machinewashable bath and shower mats for extra comfort and safety. The Clorox mat is also designed to prevent the growth of mold and mildew on the mat. Making these small updates around the house now will keep your most-used spaces clean and tidy to ensure family and friends are comfortable and happy over the holidays. — StatePoint

Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP — December 2021 — 19


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20 — December 2021 — Holiday Gift Guide - Nutley Journal - BP

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