GIFT VOLUME TWO
GUIDE A TIMES-CALL PUBLICATION
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Terres de Galets, ove, The Culprit, Chocol Dijkstra Huis, Boar’s Head
1250 SOUTh hOVer • LONGMONT, CO Village at the Peaks Next to Whole Foods Market
Copper Mu gs, Grays Peak Vodk a, Kure’s Ginger Bee r, Basket
VOLUME TWO A TIMES-CALL PUBLICATION
Special Features Coordinator
It’s the Little Things .........................................................4
Shop Berthoud ..................................................................6 Have a Holly, Jolly Journey .............................................8 Let’s Play: Top toys of 2018 .......................................10 Gifts for the Men in Your Life ....................................15 What Women Want ....................................................16 The Best Smart Watches of 2018 ...............................18 Something Sparkly .....................................................20
Misty Kaiser, 303-473-1425 firstname.lastname@example.org
Misty Kaiser Adam Goldstein Melanie Wanzek Robin Gibson Denise K. James Barry Waldman Samantha Grossman Cheryl Jackson Armin Brott Samantha Feuss
Some assembly required .............................................22 Hobbies for the Holidays............................................24 Jingle Through the Holidays
Check out our digital edition at timescall.com/magazines
with These Smartphones ............................................25
December 2, 2018
Holiday Gift Guide, Vol. 1 3
It’s the Little Things Why an understated ‘happiness’ gift might be right for your loved ones By Melanie Wanzek, CTW Features Not every gift has to achieve maximum “wow” factor. In fact, sometimes the most thoughtful gifts play to life’s slower, softer side. This holiday season, take a moment to slow down — and then contemplate how to help others do the same. “It is so easy in our very hectic world to forget what’s really important,” says Marilyn Tam, author of “The Happiness Choice,” (Wiley, 2013). “This is true even if we are so focused on something good.” Tam speaks from her own bustling life experience. The former CEO of Aveda, Tam held senior executive positions at Reebok and Nike. She co-founded and now serves as executive director of the Us Foundation, a nonproﬁt that facilitates global action to address social, economic and environmental issues. Even while doing important work, she says, one needs time to step away and reﬂect on living a balanced life. “We live dynamic lives, so we need to recognize there is a dynamic balance for different moments in time,” she says. For Tam, the idea of a life-enhancing gift has less to do with objects than with a special experience. “We have so much stuff,” Tam says. “What we need to think about is how we can help people we love have the opportunity to
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relish the moment through meaningful experiences we can share together.” A meaningful gift, she believes, is one rooted in unique, memorable experiences. Find activities that someone might not choose to do on his or her own, such as a cooking class, a pottery class or even a hot air balloon ride. Ready to give a life-giving gift? Here are some ideas.
A Breath of Fresh Air
Practicing yoga can lead to a greater improvement of mood, help alleviate depression symptoms and decrease anxiety, according Harvard Mental Health Newsletter. “One national survey estimated, for example, that about 7.5 percent of U.S. adults had tried yoga at least once, and that nearly 4 percent practiced yoga in the previous year,” the newsletter stated. Yoga studios offer a variety of classes to ﬁt the interests and skill level of the student. Many sell class cards
so the recipient can select classes at his or her convenience. To take the gift to a higher level, consider adding a yoga retreat. At Nurture Through Nature in Maine, retreaters can design their own holistic ecoretreat, with private yoga instruction, guided mediation sessions and wood-ﬁred steam baths. —————————————— Shiri Studios in Longmont offers yoga classes and workshops for all levels and need, including family classes and prenatal workshops.
SHIRI STUDIOS 1047 Venice St., Longmont 720.526.2836, shristudios.com
A Taste of Local Fare
A membership to a local food cooperative is a gift that combines tasty treats with meaningful investment. A food cooperative gives back to its members and the community. Co-ops throughout the country offer a variety of food, wellness and home goods. No two are exactly the same, but they all share the same priority: serving people, says Elizabeth Archerd, membership and marketing manager for The Wedge, a Minneapolis coopera-
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tive. The most important consideration in purchasing a cooperative membership is location, she says. Proximity is key. At The Wedge, an $80 deposit covers the one-time lifetime membership fee on behalf of someone else; the receiver then stops in the co-op to complete the paperwork to become a member. Other options: a pre-paid summer CSA membership, through which recipients receive a box of fresh local produce each week for a particular season, or creating a gift basket of locally produced honey, jams, granola and grains. ————————————— Red Wagon Farm in Longmont offers a yearly CSA from May through October at various sizes and price points.
RED WAGON FARM 7694 North 63rd St. Longmont redwagonfarmboulder.com
A Gift to Keep Giving
Consider a gift that invests in the future of others. Many global fair trade companies distribute their wares to local gift stores and some have online storefronts, including Ten Thousand Villages, Akron, Penn. Marketing manager Michele Loeper says the group’s sole focus is to end poverty around the globe. The organization provides sustainable income opportunities to art-
ists in developing countries by traveling to the countries, forming relationships with the artisans and buying their work at a fair price. “Our purchasing is based on long-term relationships and consistent orders from year to year, meaning artisan can plan for the future and build better lives,” Loeper says. “Every purchase made at a Ten Thousand Villages store allows us to provide real and lasting income opportunity to women and men who would otherwise have no real income opportunity.” ————————————— Downtown’s Crystal Joys provides meaningful employment to those with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Each item is “handmade with love.”
CRYSTAL JOYS 360 Main St., Longmont 720.526.6183, crystaljoys.com
© CTW Features
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3500 South College Avenue Fort Collins, CO 80525 Phone: (970) 226-3900 Times-Call—TimesCall.com
Holiday Gift Guide, Vol. 1 5
Shop Berthoud By Adam Goldstein, Times-Call Gift Guide Amy Lane cherishes the smalltown vibe of downtown Berthoud. As the owner of Berthoud Vintage, a shop that specializes in country home décor and offers complementary clothing and fashion items, Lane sees a value in the sense of community and closeness that marks her interactions with customers. Indeed, that tight-knit friendliness is the reason she and her family moved from Loveland to the small town in northern Colorado. “It’s just that old-town feel where you walk into a store and people know you and they recognize you,” Lane said. “It’s that true hometown feel. People know who you are. You’re like family.” That’s not to say that being an independent business owner in a small town doesn’t carry any challenges. For Lane and her fellow small-business owners in Berthoud’s downtown neighborhood, it’s important to ﬁnd a way to attract out-of-town shoppers to complement their loyal corps of locals. In a picturesque small town like Berthoud, which boasts a population of around 5,000, a business can live or die by the amount of tourists it can attract. That’s why Lane, along with some other business owners along the downtown strip, are looking for ways to promote the vibrant small-business scene in their city during one of the year’s most heavy shopping seasons. A partnership of businesses is planning to offer
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a coordinated sale on the second Saturday of December. Lane and the rest of the staff at Berthoud Vintage coordinated with other shops like Vanya Marie: an eclectic closet and D’s Boutique, both clothing retailers, to draw shoppers from outside of the city proper. “We’re trying to get people to shop in Berthoud. So it would be creating an event, a reason to come down to the town,” said Lane, who founded Berthoud Vintage with her daughter, Courtney. “I’m trying to spread the word beyond the city, because I think you need to take those steps in order for businesses to survive. It’s not like we’re in Loveland, where we’re right in town. This is a destination place. You have to be planning to come here. “That’s the challenge,” she added. But Lane and her fellow business owners see the challenge as manageable, considering the fact that their shops strive to offer hand-crafted, one-of-a-kind wares that are unique
to the Berthoud community. Berthoud Vintage, for example, beneﬁts from Lane’s many years as a realtor. Speciﬁcally, she and her daughter offer furnishings, clothes and other items that offer a rustic kind of charm. Lane explains that the shop offers a line of repurposed furniture that’s been tweaked to be more modern and appealing. “We repaint it and place it with other home items so people can visualize what it would look like in their homes,” she explained. “Most of our items are really affordable.” The nearby Vanya Marie: an eclectic closet shop specializes in locally-sourced and crafted furniture and jewelry, gifts and clothes from national designer brands. Owner Vanya Lamperes, touts the shop’s casual appeal, and the fact that shoppers can enjoy a “relaxed shopping experience” as they ﬁnd products from local artists and designers, as well as a selection of popular national brands. Owner Dorothy King seeks to
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offer customers a similarly relaxed experience at D’s Boutique, a shop that’s dedicated to “putting the ‘fun’ in ‘functional fashion.’” Like her fellow Berthoud merchants, King wanted to open a shop that mixes local ﬂair with a wider appeal. “Creating a buzz about Berthoud will bring new customers to the downtown area,” King said. “When local retail stores work together and promote each other, it helps everyone.” The coordinated sales events would give downtown shops a
chance to shine for a new customer base, even as it offered the owners a way to give back to their community. The coordinated events would include a charity aspect, as customers who bring in a canned food item would get 5 percent off their purchase. The items would go to local charitable organizations. “Giving 5 percent off of a purchase when customers bring in a can food item will help our business, even as it will give back to the community,” King said. Coming together for the greater
good of the city is one of the big motivators of the special events for Lane, who is quick to return to the small-town appeal of Berthoud. Bringing in new customers isn’t about a single business, she said; it’s a matter of contributing to the larger community. “If you want nice roads and rec centers, you have to shop in town,” she said. “The businesses that are here are trying to come up with ways to spread that message.”
Give Creatively Indigo Sky in Berthoud offers all sorts of creative, one-of-a-kind gifts from local artisans as well as antiques that can complete a room just in time for holiday guests. From wearable art, to home accessories, lavender and handmade soaps and soy candles and sage, Indigo Sky has something for everyone to love. And, if you know someone with a creative leaning, consider a gift certiﬁcate for something on their list of classes or studio time.
Buy something already completed or create your own sparkling stained glass panel in one of their many classes.
by Melissa & Doug
A classic Victorian styled doll house featuring sturdy wood construction that’s built to last and designed for imaginative play.
A Little Bit of Colorado
From the tree to the table, ﬁnd unique holiday decor for your home.
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These handpainted Colorado ﬂags by by local artist Michael Magee are a great way to hang a little piece of our beautiful state on the wall. Whether you’re a native or live across the country.
Handmade jewelry is the perfect adornment for your loved one.
(Available at Indigo Sky, 212 Mountain Ave., Berthoud)
Holiday Gift Guide, Vol. 1 7
Have a Holly, Jolly Journey Holiday Travel tips for the family
By Denise K. James CTW Features Everyone loves the opportunity to see far-ﬂung friends and family during the most wonderful time of the year. What does everyone not love? The sheer mayhem of traveling during the busiest months! Fortunately, there are ways to avoid becoming a ball of stress tinsel during the travel season, even with your spouse and kids in tow for the road trip or ﬂight. Here are a few of our favorite tips, guaranteed to keep the situation merry.
1. Ship all gifts to your destination
If you aren’t keen on the idea of having to pack (and maybe even wrap) a bunch of gifts for cousins and struggle to ﬁt it all inside the car trunk or inside an airline-approved suitcase, just have everything shipped to your ﬁnal destination instead. Shopping online is convenient and
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can prevent many holiday headaches — just make sure to tell family and friends not to open the boxes once they arrive!
2. Plan a packing list and stick closely to it
Don’t get caught trying to ﬁgure out last minute what to bring. Planning ahead is your best bet during the holidays, not only for yourself but the kids as well. Keep packing light, since you’ll likely be
coming home with more stuff than you left with. And carry-on luggage should have the overnight essentials – underwear, toiletries, etc. – in case of those fun holiday delays.
3. Assemble an ‘emergency’ kit
Kids get cranky, hungry and bored. That’s a fact of life. Make sure you’re prepared with an “emergency kit” for long lines, periods of waiting, stretches between meals and scraped elbows or knees. Hearty, protein-rich snacks to keep everyone full (and not on a sugar high) are key, along with simple ﬁrst aid supplies and small games or toys.
4. Don’t hurry
Everyone is happier when they’re not a hurry – and that’s even truer over the holiday season. Avoid the
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is essential when you’re traveling. Whether you need a vending machine snack or money to tip a driver, we suggest having money in your wallet for smaller incidental purchases.
6. Consider a rental over a hotel or staying with relatives
hectic bustle as much as possible and give your family plenty of time for bathroom breaks, meals, or just getting out of the car and stretching. If you’re ﬂying, avoid arriving the day of the event. You and the kids will
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need time to recharge.
5. Carry cash
Yes, credit cards are whipped out more often than not over the holiday season. However, carrying cash
No one wants to admit when a houseguest has outstayed the welcome, but it tends to happen over the holiday season. Instead of imposing on friends and relatives for days in a row, try seeking out a space for your own family. Vacation rentals and even Airbnb are great options – and less expensive than a hotel – and will ensure everyone enjoys the holiday visit. © CTW Features
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Let’s Play This time of year, everyone feels like a kid again. Check out the top toys of 2018 to fuel the fun this holiday season By Robin Gibson, CTW Features For those of us with children in our lives, it is time to explore the toy industry’s hits and misses as we prepare to buy presents for them this holiday season. The holidays are fast-approaching and the window to decide what to buy, and then to go ahead and buy it before it disappears from store shelves. Regardless of whose child is on the receiving end of your gift-giving generosity this year, being an informed consumer and knowing what’s hot and what’s not is crucial for everyone’s optimum enjoyment. There may be nothing worse
1. Fingerlings ($18)
The responsive baby monkey that took the toy world by storm last year returns with a baby unicorn and dragon. Made by WowWee USA, Inc., and known for grabbing things including ﬁngers (hence the name), the toy walked away with the 2018 Toy of the Year top TOTY honor.
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than seeing a child’s face light up with anticipated glee only for it to quickly dim from the sting of disappointment. Parents have a leg up on the childless by knowing ﬁrsthand what their kids want and crave. This guide, however, aims to inform everyone, so no duds are unwrapped this holiday season. We’ve done our research and have come up with the hottest trends sure to please the pickiest kid on your list. Read on for the best of the best in time to check them off before they
sell out. We leaned heavily on the winners of the 2018 Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards presented by The Toy Association. This annual compilation ranks toys in a variety of categories such construction, creativity, innovation, and licensing, as well as picks an overall winner. No one should be surprised that movies remain a top draw for toymakers, that nostalgia continues to sell, technology is still king, and a few of last year’s hits are back. In no particular order, what follows is our list of 2018’s most popular toys of the year.
2. Lego® Star Wars BB-8™ ($100) Touching on the movies and nostalgia trend, this version of the droid from the wildly popular cosmic ﬁlm franchise is perfect for a budding builder or engineer. The pick for TOTY Construction Toy of the Year promises hours of entertainment.
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3. GeoSafari® Jr. Talking Microscope ($45)
From Educational Insights®, this talking microscope featuring the voice of Bindi Irwin educates as much as it entertains.
4. FisherPrice® Power Wheels® Ford F-150 ($365)
For the kid who has everything but needs a set of wheels, look no further than this roomy, rugged truck with two speeds and Power-lock brakes®.
5. Nintendo Switch™ ($299)
Billed as a portable gaming system that kids can take with them anywhere, you cannot go wrong by gifting them this piece of technology.
7. Crayola® Color Chemistry Set ($25)
6. Fingerlings Hugs ($30)
Is there a young chemist in your life? Make them happy and color their holidays happy with this scientiﬁc experiment set designed by real Crayola® scientists.
Worthy of another mention by Fingerlings are Hugs, the life-size plush monkey version of number one on the list designed to hug your actual kid, not just their ﬁnger. ﬁnger. Imagine the same level of interaction and joy ampliﬁed on a larger scale.
9. Spin Master™ Boxer Robot ($79)
8. Hatchimals (Price Varies)
This small, interactive and responsive artiﬁcial intelligence robot comes right out of the box equipped with ten activity cards and its own quirky personality.
They’re back and as in demand as ever. Don’t test your luck this year before snatching them up by waiting for supplies to dwindle. You can be sure they will the closer we get to the holidays.
THIS HOLIDAY SEASON, GIVE THE GIFT OF HOME 1201 S. Sunset St. Longmont, CO 80501 303.776.6605 Open M, W, F, Sa: 9am-6pm Tu & Th: 9am-7:30pm
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December 2, 2018
Items & Gifts for Ages 0-99 FURNITURE • GIFTS NEW & USED HOME DECOR
Holiday Gift Guide, Vol. 1 11
10. Playskool Friends Sesame Street Let’s Dance Elmo ($39)
11. Barbie® Beekeeper Playset ($20)
This iconic doll’s career choices are unending, and she’s now professionally vested in the longevity and health of bees. Inspire children to care about them, too, by gifting them this cool set complete with spinning beehive.
No stranger to holiday gift guides, Elmo has been enchanting children for years. This musical version with headphones allows them to get up and move, sing along with him and have a dance party.
12. The Original Spirograph® ($40)
Older than some parents, this creative toy has been entertaining children for ﬁfty years by wonderfully mixing the concepts found in art and mathematics in a dazzling, mesmerizing way.
13. Really Rad Robots MiBRO ($40)
Billed as the “ultimate BFF” by the folks at Toy Insider, this electronic toy aims to engage kids in all types of overt and covert activities.
14. Bunch O Balloons Filler Soaker ($15)
With so many toys ﬁlling electronic niches and encouraging kids to stay inside, it’s nice to give them something that requires the great outdoors. Awarded the 2018 Outdoor Toy of the Year at TOTY, this inexpensive entry by Zuru is for the kid in all of us.
15. Pomsies Plus Interactive Toys ($25)
Here to give Fingerlings a run for their money, but instead of attaching to ﬁngers, this virtual pet will be clinging to your child’s backpack, clothes and anywhere else deemed popular to display collectible swag.
16. Rubie’s Jurassic World T-Rex Inﬂatable Costume ($40)
A dual-purpose gift always comes in handy, especially for parents, and this ofﬁcially licensed costume from the Jurassic World doubles as your recipient’s Halloween costume.
18. Moj Moj The Original Claw Machine Playset ($50)
A life-size arcade favorite has shrunk itself in order to ﬁt under the tree. Filled with six different mystery prizes, imagine the amount of time your kids will spend clawing for treasures. Bonus: prize packs are reﬁllable and can be customized with your additions.
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19. Playmobil Explorers Hidden Temple with T-Rex ($60)
Kids will be wearing T-Rex and playing with him, too. Foster their imagination in the jungle with Playmobil’s popular Explorers Team and watch as they navigate and create hours of play with this feature-ﬁlled jungle playset.
20. Marvel Guardians Dancing Groot Fig-
Move over Elmo, you’re not the only dancing toy that’s sure to be hot this holiday season. Look out for this groovy guy ready to shake his limbs and cut a rug.
21. Harry Potter Quidditch Mystery Flying Snitch ($35)
17. Radio Flyer Fold 2 Go Trike® ($40)
Young Harry Potter fans everywhere will jump at the chance to perfect their wizardry skills with this battery-operated ﬂying snitch connected by a barely-visible thread.
Resurrecting memories for the older crowd this holiday season, Radio Flyer delivers this fully-assembled, portable tricycle set to win fans from a whole new generation.
22. Osmo Genius Kit ($100)
Screen time can be good for kids in the case of this educational offering for iPads with fun games that teach them reading, math and other cognitive skills.
Make It A Cozy Holiday Bailey Button
Chestnut, Black, Grey
Old Friend Slipper
Old Friend Slipper
Buy 3 get 1
Good on regular price socks, not valid with any other offers. Expires 12/31/2018
Great selection of Haflinger clogs available
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Great selection of Haflinger clogs available
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December 2, 2018
Holiday Gift Guide, Vol. 1 13
23. Pie Face Cannon Game ($20)
Parents may hate us for this, but we would be remiss not to include this messy yet fun twist on the original Pie Face game. Ready, aim …FIRE!
24. Hot Wheels Corkscrew Crash Track ($49) We love gifts that keep on giving, and that’s exactly what this Hot Wheels gift does. Considering it only comes with one car, you can thank us later when you now know what to buy them on future occasions.
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25. Melissa & Doug Examine and Treat Pet Vet Play Set ($27)
For the animal-loving kid in your life, inspire emotions such as empathy while exposing them to world of veterinary care. The set includes 24 pieces designed to encourage and foster play around the profession.
© CTW Features
December 2, 2018
Gifts for the Men in Your Life By Barry Waldman, CTW Features Let’s face it, buying gifts for most guys can be a challenge. The average dude is content with a beer, a football game on the tube and a decent car. And if he’s a dad, he’s likely got everything he wants — a home, some toys for the weekend, and the love and ridicule of his family. What more does he need? So this holiday season, check out these six gift ideas for the gentleman who has everything, but forgot where he put it.
iMuto Portable Charger X6 Pro, $60
Tile Sport, $35
This tiny tracking device helps you ﬁnd your keys, phone or anything else of value that keeps ﬁnding its way to places without you. Click the button and the tracker makes a sound if it’s within 100 feet. If it’s not, ﬁnd it with the app on your phone. Can’t ﬁnd your phone? Click the waterproof Tile Sport and your phone will ring. Leave the app running and it tracks the last place and time you had the item.
Is his phone battery always wearing down? This portable charger can completely recharge his device in minutes and still have plenty of juice to power up another phone. Weighing less than two pounds, the iMuto Portable Charger X6 Pro has a universal connector and can gas up a phone even as it’s charging itself.
Corkcicle Chillsner, $30/pair
Though the fridge and the cooler may be stocked, eventually the ﬂow of perfectly chilled brews runs out at any football watching party or holiday get-together. With the Corkcicle Chilsner, he can cool down his brew instantly. Just insert the stainless steel icicle into the beer and voila! Ice cold beer.
Picnic Backpack, $80
Is your man a romantic at heart? Then give him the ultimate picnic, with the picnic backpack. It comes pre-packed with melamine plates, goblets, ﬂatware and napkins for four, a bread knife, wooden cutting board, salt and pepper shakers and a sommelier’s corkscrew. It even has a detachable wine cooler and sablegray felt blanket that attach on the outside of the pack. How is he going to carry all that? With a man-sized pack and padded straps for comfort personalized with his name. He’ll be the coolest guy on the lawn or beach.
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Zepp Golf 2 3D Swing Analyzer, $130
Fred Atomic Nose & Ear Hair Trimmer, $13
See, you think your guy would turn up his nose at this gift, but here’s a little dude-secret: nothing sucks the testosterone out of a man more than the arrival of unsightly nose and ear hair, particularly if it’s accompanied by a compensating departure of head hair. With the Fred Atomic Trimmer he can ﬁre a death ray at the offending hairs. It does require one double-A battery.
What golfer doesn’t want a swing coach attached to his wrist? The Zepp Golf Analyzer records his club speed, club plane, backswing length and a host of other metrics, and records video of the swing, all viewable on a phone app. It even provides comparisons with pro swings and advice on how to improve. PGA Tour, here he comes. Really, it’s easy to buy guy gifts, as long as you think like one. Happy holidays! © CTW Features
What Women Want
The top gifts for the women in your life By Samantha Grossman, CTW Features The holiday season is upon us again, which means it’s time to get a head start on gift shopping. If you’re looking for the perfect presents for all the wonderful women in your life, but aren’t sure where to start, we’ve got you covered. Whether you’re shopping for a spouse, family member, friend or coworker, here are six gift ideas for all the women on your list.
1. The World’s Softest Pajamas
Made of a fabric “that’s as soft to the touch as a baby bunny and as luxurious against the skin as the ﬁnest cashmere,” these dreamy, silky-soft PJs will keep her comfy all winter long. You can even personalize them with her name or initials to make this gift extra special. They come in pink, teal or charcoal and a variety of styles. Oh, and you can throw in matching slippers, too. Pajamagram.com, $69.99 and up
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2. The Perfect New Suitcase
Has she been using the same worn-out suitcase for years? It’s time to upgrade. This chic, modern carry-on made by Away is unbreakable and comes with a (TSA-approved) lock to keep her stuff secure. Oh, and it even comes with an ejectable battery so she can charge her phone on the go. Larger luggage sizes are available as well. Awaytravel. com, $225 and up
3. The Prettiest (Secretly Fake) Succulent
Does she need some greenery to spruce up her space during the cold winter months? These faux succulents look surprisingly real — but she won’t have to worry about watering them. Plus, she can keep them anywhere, since they don’t need sunlight either. This is a great low-cost gift for a coworker, friend or family member. You can order these as is, or customize them for her speciﬁc tastes. Etsy.com, $18.95 and up
4. A High-Quality Weighted Blanket
Weighted blankets are all the rage right now, thanks to their ability to reduce stress and anxiety and ultimately help people sleep better. We recommend starting with this 12-pound Brookstone blanket, which comes with evenly distributed weighted pellets that she can easily remove to wash the cover. She’ll thank you for helping her sleep like a baby! Bed, Bath & Beyond, $149.99
5. Cozy (and Functional) Touch-Screen Gloves
These sleek leather gloves won’t just keep her warm and stylish — they’ll also allow her to use her phone or tablet without exposing her ﬁngers to the cold. The palm side is treated with nanotechnology to make them responsive to touch screens, and the deerskin is durable enough to last for years. She’ll love the extra-cozy cashmere lining, which will keep her hands warm and dry. KentWang.com, $95
6. A High-Tech Smart Water Bottle
Studies have shown that drinking plenty of water has tons of benefits, from aiding weight loss and preventing headaches to alleviating hangovers. The Hidrate Spark water bottle syncs with a smartphone app to track your water intake and remind you to drink throughout the day. Though this may seem pricey for a water bottle, people swear by it, so help the woman in your life head into the new year feeling healthy and hydrated. Hidratespark.com, $54.95 © CTW Features
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The Best Smart Watches of 2018 By Cheryl Jackson, CTW Features Know someone who needs to get a handle on their weight, sleep or UV exposure? There’s a timepiece for that. Technology for the wrist abounds with range of price points. And interest continues to grow as consumers turn to the devices to keep tabs on their activities, music and connections. Smartwatch shipments around the world increased by 37 percent in the second quarter compared to the same period last year. Here are some of the best smartwatch options to help you make the most of your time.
One61 Studio Wonder Woman Smartwatch
Track your steps and sleep, and monitor your rate with Princess Diana of Themyscira. The themed piece features notiﬁcations, music and camera controllers, phone dialer and voice assistant integration and ﬁve character-inspired faces. $149.99
Huami’s Amazﬁt Stratos
This GPS smartwatch with scratchresistant tempered glass and a durable silicone strap tracks 12 sports, including triathlon, mountaineering, swimming, cycling, tennis, soccer and trail running. It also measures maximum oxygen consumption, exercise load and recovery time. $199
Fused with Bluetooth-enabled features including a safety mode, camera remote shutter, activity tracker, music controls, and customizable ﬁltered notiﬁcations, this piece replaces the digital screen with a standard watch face. Like all the pieces in the Kronaby Collection, it has a battery that lasts up to two years, the Walk Me Home safety feature with a preset emergency contact for notiﬁcation of your location with a tap of the watch, and pairs with your If This Then That account to control your lights, adjust temperature, turn on your security system and open your garage door. $495
Fossil Q Venture HR
This fourth-generation smartwatch includes untethered GPS, Google Pay-compatible NFC and swim-proof functionality. Heart rate monitoring is integrated into the design, showing users their beats per minute on the watch face at a quick glance. The 24-hour battery can be fully charged in an hour. $255$275
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Muse Minimo Hybrid Smartwatch
The one-year battery life on this watch will keep features accessible, including sun UV intensity tracking, activity tracking and contactless NFC payments. It also triggers emergency calls to loved ones with the press of a button. For a bit of fun, tracked activities generate rewards for use in the mobile game PlanetWatch. $125
Mobvoi TicWatch Pro
This Dual-screen smartwatch from AI company Mobvoi comes with Wear OS and lasts ﬁve to 30 days on a single charge. Essential Mode allows for seeing time date, step counting and heart rate monitoring. The data syncs when the watch is switched to Smart Mode. Features include health and ﬁtness tracking, GPS and NFC payments, Google Assistant, music streaming and access to thousands of apps directly downloadable through the on-watch Google Play Store. $249.99
This smartwatch is designed speciﬁcally for seniors and those with special needs; with remote monitoring of heart rate, sleep quality and an SOS option in case of emergencies. GPS tracking keeps wearers connected to their loved ones and alerts them to falls. And two-way calls can be made to family members, caretakers or an emergency center with the tap of the screen. $199
Apple Watch Series 4
Offering a 30 percent larger screen and its thinnest body yet, Apple Watch Series 4 offers the ﬁrst-ever builtin EKG scanner – the ﬁrst such over-the-counter EKG product available to consumers. It can track and detect heart issues, as well as offer plenty of biofeedback for athletes. It also autodetects falls and can call emergency services to assist you – a huge asset for older users. $399-499
© CTW Features
December 2, 2018
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Something Sparkly Holidays should shine and Snyder Jewelers can help you ﬁnd just the right amount of sparkle. Silver and gold tones mix with gemstones, diamonds and even stand alone to make beautiful adornments to light up Christmas morning. Knowledgeable and welcoming staff can help you create your own custom pieces or pick the perfect designer piece.
Designed for the modern woman, these Stackable Rings are made to be worn effortlessly — no matter what day it is or what the future holds. Express yourself with a one-of-a-kind combination that is uniquely you. Unparalleled arrays lets you mix metals, colors and styles to create a look all your own. Wear as many or as few as you like! Available in sterling silver, rose gold, yellow gold and white gold. Prices in sterling starting as low as $75 and in 14kt gold from as low as $220.
Not only do these bracelets look sleek and stylish on their own, but they look fantastic layered up! As lasting as it is beautiful, bracelets are the perfect go-to pieces for any fashion savvy look and are also great gifts for your loved ones. Whether you prefer a bangle, charm or cuff, we have a stylish selection of classic and modern bracelets to suit your look. 14kt gold and diamond bracelet prices ranging from $850 to $ 1750.
Available at Snyder Jewlers, 2201 Ken Pratt Blvd., Longmont, snyderjewelers.com
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Some assembly required PARENTS @ PLAY
By Armin Brott and Samantha Feuss, Tribune News Service (TNS) Some toys and games are ready to go right out of the box. Others take a little (or a lot) of work. Here are some delightful kits that you’ll love doing with your young child. Plus, a little something for adults or older kids.
Hidden Temple with T-Rex
(Playmobil #9429) You and your young explorers can embark on an adrenaline-pumping adventure deep into the jungles of Dino Island. The Temple itself has all sorts of creepy features, like dangling vines, test tubes, and a variety of things that eerily glow in the dark when you shine the included UV light on them. There’s also a heat-sensitive treasure map — rub it and the path to the treasure appears. Oh, and did we mention that you’re not alone on the island? Fortunately, you’ve got a functioning laser gun to protect you from the T-Rex (what would you expect from a place called Dino Island?). Ages 4+. Under $60. playmobil.us/
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Barn with Silo
(Playmobil #9315) For kids who may not be up for the heart-thumping excitement of Dino Island, this playset is just the ticket. Comes with a nice selection of farm animals (cat, chickens, cow, horse, and rooster), two human ﬁgures, hay bales, and a lot more. You and your young farmers can start your day by feeding the animals, and when you’re ready to hit the hay yourself, the barn is plenty big enough to house not only the animals and accessories, but also the season’s harvests. Ages 4+ Under $70. playmobil.us/
December 2, 2018
(Playmobil #9318) Sometimes you just need to get away from it all, and this playset has everything you need for an extended family road trip. We’re moving into the rainy season, so you’ll probably want to sleep in the RV, but during the day, take the bikes for a spin, shoot the rapids in the canoe, conquer the dunes on the ATV, and, at the end of the day, ﬁre up the grill and roast some hot dogs and veggies. But please clean up after yourself, otherwise those raccoons (included) will be digging through your trash all night. Ages 4+. Under $70. playmobil.us
John Deere Tractor Engine
(Klein) Do you have a budding engineer around the house — you know, one of those kids who likes to take things apart? If so, before you let him or her start dismantling your car (it’s too late for your toaster), consider this tractor engine. At more than two feet tall, this tractor is just the right size for a young mechanic. It comes with more than a dozen removable parts, including spark plugs, wheels, wing nuts, and more, as well as some basic tools. There’s also a very cool “repair function,” where the lights and starter won’t operate until the engine’s components have been removed, reassembled, and reactivated. For ages 3+ About $100. klein-toys.com
“Blanket Fort: Growing up Is Optional”
(book by Grackle + Pigeon) And now, something for the adults. Created by the Brooklyn-based wife-and-husband team of Jessie T. Kressen and Nathaniel Kressen, this beautifully illustrated book includes instructions for building 25 artisanal blanket forts. These are deﬁnitely not the blanket-over-two-chairs forts you built as a kid. We’re talking a David-Bowie/ outer-space-themed fort, a yoga fort, a library fort, a backyard fort, and many more. All are full functional, easy to build, cozy, and inviting. $18.99 at your favorite bookseller or harpercollins.com
(Armin and Samantha are the authors of the popular parenting blogs: mrdad.com andhavesippywilltravel.com. For more reviews of toys and games, visit parentsatplay.com/)
December 2, 2018
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Hobbies for the Holidays HobbyTown is a full service hobby store with toys, STEM toys, games, trains, models, and all things remote control (RC). They have a broad selection of the most popular hobbies that parents and kids (and adult kids!) are looking for. Some of the most interesting this season are:
Among all the model trains, planes and automobiles, UGears Models stand out. These wooden laser cut models go together without any glue or fasteners. They are all operational, such as a fully articulating horse, a ﬂower that folds open to reveal a ballerina, a train powered by a rubber band and more. The models range in cost from $10 to $89 depending on the complexity and take from 15 minutes to 7 hours depending on the number of parts. These are fun gifts to put together as a family during the holiday season.
Remote Control everything is popular. Hobbytown carries cars, trucks, motorcycles, boats, helicopters, and airplanes at every level of hobbyist. Which brings us to....
Both manual and remote control construction equipment toys are great for hours of fun around the house and outdoors.
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There are options from the Toy Grade starting at $30 up to the highest Hobby Grade up to $1299 with literally hundreds of options in between. You tell us what you want to do and we’ll ﬁnd the best hobby or toy to ﬁt your desire.
December 2, 2018
Jingle Through the Holidays with These Smartphones By Samatha Grossman, CTW Features
Just about everyone on your shopping list probably has a smartphone, but the holiday season is a perfect time to treat them to an upgrade. Many people keep the same phone for years — even as much better, faster and smarter models hit the market — so a new device will be an especially appreciated and useful gift. Here are the top ﬁve smartphones for the 2018 holiday season.
1. Samsung Galaxy Note 9, $999
Though it’s one of the priciest smartphones on the market, the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 has so much going for it and would be a fantastic gift for the tech-savvy person in your life who wants the best of the best. For starters, it has a big, beautiful display and a powerful stylus. It also boasts tons of storage space, a best-in-class processor and a huge battery, which is a major perk for anyone whose phone always seems to be dying in the middle of the day. Specs: Display: 6.4 inches, Memory (RAM): 4 GB, Storage: 128 GB, Battery capacity: 3,300 mAh
Sweet Nightingale Boutique and Home Decor
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Apple iPhone Xs Max, $1099 and up
LG V30+, $775
With plenty of storage, high-tech audio capabilities and decent earphones included, this is the perfect phone for the music lover in your life. It also has a large battery that will last all day. (The upcoming LG V40 is rumored to have even more great features, including a button for Google Assistant and a ﬁngerprint sensor on the back.) Specs: Display: 6 inches, Memory (RAM): 4 GB, Storage: 128 GB Battery capacity: 3,300 mAh
You can never go wrong gifting someone the latest iPhone model. The Xs is the largest iPhone to date, and one of the most popular features on the newest iPhones is Portrait Mode, which creates a depth-of-ﬁeld effect, keeping your subject sharp against a blurred background. This allows you to take professional-looking photos right on your phone. It includes a faster processor and updated face-detecting technology to replace home buttons and ﬁngerprint sensors. Specs: Display:6.5 inches, Memory (RAM): 4 GB, Storage: 64-512 GB, Battery capacity: 2658 mAh
Motorola Moto G6, $219.97
One of the most affordable smartphones you’ll ﬁnd, the Moto G6 still packs quite a punch, and is widely considered the best bargain smartphone on the market. Some of the biggest draws (beyond the extreme affordability) include a headphone jack, sleek design and a fast-charging feature. Some users have lamented that it’s splash-proof (not waterproof) and the camera sometimes runs slowly, but overall, this is a solid phone at an incredible price point. Specs: Display: 5.7 inches, Memory (RAM): 3 GB, Storage: 32 GB, Battery capacity: 3000 mAh
Google Pixel 2, $649
Many consider this to be the best smartphone camera out there, so this is a fantastic gift for the photography nerd or aspiring Instagram inﬂuencer in your life. It also boasts waterproofing and a larger version called the Pixel 2 XL for optimal display. Be on the lookout for the latest upgraded version, which is rumored to include an even better camera with a “super selﬁes” feature. Specs: Display: 5 inches, Memory (RAM): 4 GB, Storage: 64 GB, Battery capacity: 2,000 mAh © CTW Features
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