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2016

Holiday Holiday Guide

A Special Advertising Supplement 2016 • signalscv.com

Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 1


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Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 3


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SPA-LIDAY GIFT GUIDE

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4 • Gift Guide

Signal Multimedia • 2016


From the

Staff

Editor

EDITORIAL SPECIAL SECTIONS EDITOR Eva Piccolo epiccolo@signalscv.com 661-287-5593

ADVERTISING ADVERTISING DIRECTOR Steve Nakutin snakutin@signalscv.com 661-287-5561

2016

Holiday Holiday Guide

MULTI-MEDIA ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES: Dawn Begley Maureen Daniels Toni Sims Brody Womer SALES ASSISTANT Courtney Briley

PRODUCTION CREATIVE SERVICES SUPERVISOR

Inside

Deborah Runions

Holiday Entertaining Tips . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

CREATIVE SERVICES:

No-Stress Holiday Entertaining Tips and Tricks . . . . . . . . . . 9

Trish Galloway Emily Lyman Karen Peraza

ADMINISTRATION

Homegating for the Holidays . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Safe Food Techniques . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

PUBLISHER Charles F. Champion II cchampion@signalscv.com 661-287-5578

Cherished Holiday Traditions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Your Christmas Tree . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18

VICE RESIDENT AND EDITOR Jason Schaff jason@signalscv.com 661-287-5515

A PUBLICATION OF

Holiday Host or Hostess Gifts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 Gifts that Stimulate Imaginations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 Gifts for Him or Her . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 Gifts of Literacy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

2016 • signalscv.com

The Holidays are here again. Time to prepare our shopping lists. My list seems to grow year after year. Luckily, we live in an area where there is no shortage of shopping opportunities. Every neighborhood has its own little shopping centers with small ‘mom & pop’ stores, as well as larger chain stores, and of course, there’s always the fabulous Westfield Valencia Town Center. We really don’t need to leave our valley for anything. Shopping locally helps our communities, our schools and our public resources. Shopping at smaller businesses helps out our small business owners, as well. Online shopping is always fun. Can’t beat the convenience of having packages delivered to your doorstep. However, keep in mind that if you’re not home during the day, perhaps delivering to your workplace or to a secure mail depot is probably a lot safer. Check out the following pages with lots of great gifting ideas, from local shopping to online shopping. I’m sure you can find something for everyone on your list. Happy holidays Santa Clarita! Eva Piccolo Special Sections Editor epiccolo@signalscv.com

Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 5


Holiday Entertaining

Tips Guaranteed to Help Hosts Impress Guests

(BPT) - The holiday season is packed with social events big and small. What makes some more memorable than others? The extra thought and special touches from the host or hostess. Cookbook author and entertaining expert Gaby Dalkin recently teamed up with the Paper & Packaging How Life Unfolds campaign to share how you can make a big statement this season with surprisingly little effort. These five entertaining tips are guaranteed to help you create a one-of-kind party, leaving guests impressed and full of holiday spirit.

Conquer holiday stress with to-do lists To reduce stress, stay organized and ensure you maintain a merry attitude, use printed templates to create handwritten holiday party to-do lists.

6 • Gift Guide

“I start my to-do lists weeks before the celebration and break them down by day,” Dalkin says. “A few days before the big event, I stock up on beverages. Two days before I buy all the shelf-stable ingredients. The day before, all the produce goes into the fridge, and I make any sauces or appetizers that can rest in the fridge overnight without being affected. And then, the day of the party is broken down by the hour. If you’re making a roast, start it in the morning. A salad can be prepped ahead of time and dressed before serving.”

Elevate gifting with personalized presentation Nearly half of Americans feel that gift presentation enhances the gift they give or receive, according to a Paper and Packaging Board survey.

Signal Multimedia • 2016


photographed elements of the night.”

Send guests home with a little something homemade

That means if you want to impress, don’t skimp on gift presentation. “I grab a few rolls of brown kraft paper and make it special,” Dalkin says. “If I’m sending a present to someone who loves food, I’ll grab some stamps with fun food on them and stamp the paper so it’s customized for that individual. If it’s my younger niece, I’ll stamp it with some hearts. These small gestures make a big impact.”

Use a creative approach to assigned seating Assigned seating is particularly helpful when entertaining large groups. It takes the guesswork out of sitting down to dinner and keeps the evening flowing smoothly. It’s also an easy way to add festive style to the tabletop. “If I’m entertaining for more than 10, I’ll make little fold-over name tags out of cute cardstock,” says Dalkin. “I’ll punch a hole in the paper name tag and weave in a bit of rosemary, paper ribbon or a fresh flower to give it an extra pop.”

Add pizazz with a Champagne bar The survey also found that for

2016 • signalscv.com

Frozen cookie dough is one of the trendiest homemade gifts of the year. Just whip up your favorite batch of dough, tightly wrap it in parchment paper and freeze. Then add some holiday ribbons, a personalized paper label and handwritten baking instructions. “Recipients can slice and bake at their leisure and file the recipe card for years to come,” says Dalkin. “You can make the same thing for everyone, or perhaps a few different batches to suit any sweet tooth. I think of it as a gift that keeps giving.” c

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Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 7


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No-stress Holiday Entertaining

Tips and Tricks

(BPT) - A holiday party is a wonderful way to celebrate the season with friends and family. However, no matter how big or small the guest list, hosting the event can turn stressful fast. Before you know it, your holiday gathering has become more frustrating than festive, and you’re suddenly feeling like a Scrooge. With a few tips and tricks, you can easily host an impressive holiday party without the fuss. From easy appetizers to elegant ambiance, try these five stressfree ideas for creating a memorable event: Opt for potluck: The holidays are all about coming together and helping others, so this year instead of tackling a multi-course meal, set up the buffet table and invite guests over for a potluck. You provide the appetizer and main course and allow guests to bring over their favorite 7.38 x 4.50holiday recipes to share.

Amazing appetizers: Set out apps that are easy on the host but don’t compromise taste, such as cheese spreads with a crudite plate and a variety of chips or flat breads. Try the new Alouette Sharp Cheddar spread on a crostini topped with thinly sliced prosciutto. If you want to be a little more adventurous, swap in either the Chipotle or Ranch variety for an extra kick. Simplify the color scheme: To give your home a professionally-decorated touch without the extra effort, focus on simplifying holiday hues. For a time-saving, chic look, use just two or three colors. For example, gold and red or silver and purple are timeless pairings that will transform your party into an elegant affair. Add a magical twinkle: Strings of lights are one of the easiest ways to transform any space into a winter

wonderland. Try incorporating strands of mini lights into topiaries and tablescapes for instant holiday allure. Just remember to test lights before using so you don’t end up with burnt-out bulbs or broken strings. Create a premade signature cocktail: By making a big batch of a signature drink ahead of time, you’ll have more free moments for mingling. For example, fill a punch bowl with eggnog or set out pitchers of sangria so guests can grab a tasty libation and toast to a happy new year. The right strategies will help you create a holiday party that will be the talk of the town long after the new year has arrived. What’s more, these tips don’t require excess time, stressful steps or unneeded expenses. And that’s a holiday surprise to welcome with open arms. c

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Last-Minute Holiday 11/16/16 Guide3:04•PM9


Homegating for

the Holidays

5 Pro Tips for MVP Hosts (BPT) - This holiday season, millions of Americans will celebrate with friends, family and football. Will you be one of them? A whopping 78 percent of Americans watch NFL games with family or friends either at their home or at someone else’s home during the season, found the NFL Homegating Sofa Survey. What’s more, over half of Americans plan their Thanksgiving dinner around the kickoff time of an NFL game. Considering that NFL Homegating is all about celebrating the spirit and tradition of a stadium tailgate at home, team-inspired serve ware, glassware and decor might not only make the perfect holiday gifts this season, but also a fun way to have one cohesive theme for festive gatherings. With big match-ups scheduled throughout the holidays on the road to the playoffs, football fans around the country will be throwing their team jerseys over holiday sweaters, kicking up their feet after a big meal, and enjoying the game together. If you’re hosting an upcoming gathering, consider

10 • Gift Guide

these five tips to host like a pro and keep your guests happy this holiday season and beyond from NFL Homegating Lifestyle Expert Maureen Petrosky: Entertaining is a team sport. More than a third of Americans (35 percent) prefer to be the “quarterback” of the party, responsible for hosting and organizing the food. But even the best quarterbacks can’t win games by themselves. So if a guest offers to bring something, say “yes.” You can always use extra ice, snacks, beverages or napkins. Decorate like a pro ... and get the kids in the game. Fill water balloons with your team’s color and freeze them. Then on game day, use them in a drink tub to cool drinks instead of, or in addition to, ice cubes. Use a team-inspired throw blanket as a tablecloth, or team coasters as bases for pillar candles. To add height to your food station, create a centerpiece with an assortment of plates in your team’s colors or a football-shaped cutting board stacked with glass tankards or game time bowls. Put a healthy twist on game day snacks. Keep

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high-calorie snacks on the sidelines, and place the healthier choices in the viewing room where guests are more likely to hang out. Also serve the higher calorie treats on smaller plates and in smaller bowls, and refill if needed. Guests are more likely to take less and leave some for others. Skip the large serving spoons and offer smaller scoops. Crock-tails. Use your slow cooker in an unexpected way to serve a warm drink to guests. This is especially memorable when set up outside as guests play their own game of football. According to the Sofa Survey, over 60 percent of respondents would like to receive an NFL team-branded cooking product as a gift. So if your

2016 • signalscv.com

Secret Santa doesn’t already have a Crock-Pot, be sure to put that at the top of the list. Touchdown treats. Recipes like Crock-Pot tacos, chicken and waffle sliders with spicy honey or ranch dressing are easy to prepare and serve, even for the kitchen rookie. Complete your NFL Homegating spread with desserts like football-shaped brownies or ice cream sandwiches. This year, fans can celebrate the holidays while embracing their love of football with a variety of fun NFL Homegating products. Fans cans can visit NFLShop. com/Homegating for more inspiration to take their football-watching parties to the next level this holiday season. c

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Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 11


Safe Food Techniques

Every Home Cook Should Know

(BPT) - Good hosts want positive experiences around the dishes they prepare for the holidays - great conversation and good memories. What’s a sure way to mar the feast? Not being consistent in following safe food handling techniques that every home cook should know. Each year, one in six people experiences food poisoning, affecting some 48 million people, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “Sometimes, the causes of food poisoning are beyond our control, in spite of regulations and best practices by farmers and food companies. While ready-to-eat foods and restaurants are often highlighted in the fight against food poisoning, we often overlook that home cooks are important partners in reducing the

risk of foodborne illness,” said Mike Robach, vice president of food safety at Cargill. “The most common foodborne pathogens, like salmonella and campylobacter, can cause serious illness, particularly in young children, the elderly, pregnant women and other immune-compromised people,” said Shelley Feist, executive director of the Partnership for Food Safety Education. “Consistently practicing good hand hygiene and safe food handling at home is important to protect your family from these microorganisms and the serious illness they can cause.” Each year, foodborne illnesses lead to 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths, according to the CDC, as they can lead to serious conditions such as sepsis and kidney failure. Like any skilled chef, you are best

prepared to create a memorable feast when you keep these safe food handling practices top-of-mind. They are just as necessary to a great meal as sharp knives, high-quality cookware, fresh ingredients and the right appliances.

Clean hands and surfaces often Before you begin cooking, start by making sure your work area and tools are clean. Wash all preparation surfaces, including cutting boards, with hot, soapy water. If any tools or containers you will need are dirty, either run the dishwasher cycle or hand-wash the items in a sink of hot, soapy water. Finally, wash your hands with warm water and soap for 20

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12 • Gift Guide

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Rinse fresh fruits and vegetables Depending on what you are using, some foods will require rinsing. Rinse fresh fruits and vegetables under running water just before eating or using. Firm-skinned produce like cucumbers and apples should be rubbed under running tap water by hand or with a clean brush. You should also rinse any produce that will be peeled, because microorganisms on the surface can be easily transferred to the flesh with a peeler or knife blade. Blot fresh fruits and vegetables dry with paper towels. There is no need to rinse raw meat or poultry, at least, not in the name of food safety. All that will accomplish is potentially spreading bacteria in your sink and beyond. Raw meat and poultry must be cooked to a safe internal temperature.

Safely handle meat and poultry

2016 • signalscv.com

Cook to safe temperatures Here is a compelling reason to cook food to a safe temperature: Even a professional chef cannot say with precision if a food item is cooked to a safe internal temperature. Food is safely cooked when it reaches a high enough internal temperature to kill the harmful bacteria that cause illness. Get a food thermometer and use it consistently. For a list of safe internal temperatures, visit the Partnership for Food Safety Education website at fightbac.org.

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Safe leftovers Proper storing of leftovers in a refrigerator at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below helps reduce the risk of food poisoning. Keep leftovers in shallow containers so they cool off more quickly. When reheating leftovers, make sure they reach a safe temperature of 165 F degrees as measured with a food thermometer. Consume or freeze refrigerated leftovers within three to four days. For more tips to build your skills and expertise in food safety, visit StoryofYourDinner.org. Check out an animated video, as well as fun items such as kid-friendly placemats to download, and a collection of delicious side dish recipes that incorporate home food safety tips. c

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Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 13


Cherished Holiday Traditions

Films are Great Gifts

(MC) – Tradition plays a pivotal role during the holiday season. While each family has its own unique holiday traditions, certain traditions are embraced and shared by families far and wide. The tradition of watching holiday films together as a family is one custom that has endured for generations. Grandparents may have their favorite films, while moms and dads no doubt have their own must-see holiday movies as well. And no holiday film session is complete without including at least one movie that celebrates the magical impact that this time of year can have on youngsters. This year, holiday shoppers can even draw some gift-giving inspiration from some classic holiday films that appeal to family members of all ages.

“The Polar Express” (2004) Children love this tale of a young boy who lives out many kids’ holiday fantasies by embarking on a magical, unpredictable journey to the North Pole. Along the way, the boy becomes a true believer in the spirit of Christmas when he picks up a loose sleigh bell that falls off of Santa’s sleigh. Santa ultimately entrusts the bell to the boy, referring to the bell as “the first gift of Christmas.” Parents who want to make the tradition of watching holiday films together with their children even more special for kids can give the First Gift of Christmas Sleigh Bell Gift Set (https://www.etsy.com/shop/ LilyDeal), providing their youngsters with the same sense of magic and

wonderment the boy feels when Santa gives him the sleigh bell in the film. The set includes a large sleigh bell, a red- and snow white-striped gift box, forest green ribbon, and large bow. A leather strap connected to each bell allows kids to hang the bell to include as part of their home holiday decor, or kids can carry the bell with them during the holiday season and show it off to friends and family alike. Each bell comes in a velvet gift bag, making the set an ideal memento for shoppers who want to give kids something they can unwrap and enjoy each Christmas for years to come. In addition, each bell comes with a Certificate of Authenticity that is signed by Santa and lists the name of the elf who inspected the bell, the reindeer name and the location of the bell on the reindeer’s harness.

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Shoppers looking for stocking stuffers for young fans of the film can opt for the Polar Express Round Trip Train Ticket. At 8” by 3”, the ticket fits easily into standard Christmas stockings and can be customized to say “BELIEVE” or any word up to eight letters.

“National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” (1989) A holiday favorite among a slightly older crowd, “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” continues the tale of lovable family man Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase). Clark is determined to provide a traditional family Christmas for his wife, children and their large extended family, only to have his dream holiday derailed by a stingy boss. When shopping for gifts for fans of this holiday classic, shoppers can scour an array of homemade items on Etsy.com, from coffee mugs to T-shirts to home furnishings and more, celebrating Clark Griswold and all the mayhem his family

hilariously endures en route to enjoying a merry Christmas together.

“It’s a Wonderful Life” (1946) Grandparents are no doubt very familiar with this beloved holiday classic, which tells the tale of frustrated businessman George Bailey (Jimmy Stewart). Contemplating suicide on Christmas Eve, George is saved when his guardian angel, Clarence (Henry Travers), intervenes and shows him what life would have been like for George’s loved ones had he never been born. Holiday shoppers looking for something special for a parent or grandparent who loves the story of George Bailey can peruse Etsy.com to find a host of items and replicas that recall some of the film’s most memorable scenes. This year, shoppers can make the tradition of watching holiday films together as a family even more special by incorporating some beloved holiday movies into their gift-giving. c – Metro Creative

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Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 15


Valencia Marketplace 2nd Annual

Community Tree Lighting Ceremony Please join your neighbors and friends

Thursday, December 1 5:00 PM-8:00 PM

in the Valencia Marketplace Amphitheater Join us in the Valencia Marketplace Amphitheater for the 2nd Annual Community Tree Lighting Ceremony! Celebrate the season, as we light up our 20foot tree and join in our community sing-along with the West Ranch High School choir as they perform your favorite Holiday carols! Join community leaders, your neighbors and friends, along with Santa Claus, in lighting our tree. There will be special entertainment, lots of surprises, and more!

16 • Gift Guide

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5:00 PM - 8:00 PM Radio Remote Broadcast with KHTS Radio. FREE Children’s storytelling and activities, sponsored by the Stevenson Ranch Library. Entertainment by choral groups from local schools. Kids can climb on the KHTS antique fire truck and visit with Santa Claus. Balloon Magic by Magic Castle Magician Dennis Forel. Bring your camera, and take lots of photos!

7:00 PM - 8:00 PM Tree Lighting Ceremony with special entertainment and surprises!

The Old Road between McBean Pkwy & Lyons Ave/Pico Cyn Rd Just west of I-5, Valencia

ValenciaMarketplace.com 2016 • signalscv.com

Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 17


Your Christmas Tree

Tips To Prolong the Life of Your Christmas Tree

(MC) – Christmas trees are symbols of the holiday season and the spirit of giving that the season champions. Choosing and decorating a Christmas tree is a tradition for many families, and depending on the trees they choose, families may have some work to do to keep their trees glowing all season long. Artificial Christmas trees require little, if any, maintenance. But live Christmas trees, which some people feel are more authentic and welcoming than their artificial counterparts, require daily maintenance. In addition to supplying the tree with water at least once per day, live Christmas tree owners can take these steps to prolong

18 • Gift Guide

the life of their trees. ★ Protect the tree on the way home. Your tree might be vulnerable to damage as you transport it from the farm to your living room. Unwrapped trees placed atop vehicles can be dried out by the wind. Prevent wind damage by wrapping the tree if you plan to place it atop your vehicle. If possible, lay the tree in the bed of a pickup truck and close the cover over the bed. If you don’t have access to a pickup truck but can use a minivan or SUV to transport your tree, see if the tree fits inside your vehicle. If it doesn’t, wrap it tightly in a blanket or another form of cover, making sure the cover won’t blow off in the

wind when you hit the open road. ★ Have the tree cut before you take it off the lot. If you typically purchase your tree from a florist or tree lot instead of a tree farm, then remember to ask the seller to recut the stem of the tree before you take it home. Tree farm trees are freshly cut, but trees sold away from the farm might have been chopped down weeks before they are ultimately sold. During the interval between being cut down and sold, trees’ vascular systems can clog and prevent the tree from getting the water it needs to survive the season. A fresh cut of the stem unclogs the system and ensures the tree will be able to consume water.

Signal Multimedia • 2016


★ Avoid placing the tree near heaters or drafty windows. Many people know that placing a live tree near a potentially hot heating vent poses a fire hazard. But doing so also can dry out the tree, decreasing the chances it will make it through the season. Placing the tree near drafty windows also can dry out the tree, so try to find a spot in your home with a consistent temperature. ★ Water the tree often. Christmas trees need lots of water to make it through the season. You may notice the water in the tree stand disappears quickly when you first bring the tree home.

That’s because freshly cut trees will consume more water than trees that were cut several weeks ago. As the season goes on and the tree’s vascular system begins to clog, you might not need to water the tree as much as you did when you first brought it home. But check the tree’s water stand twice per day when you first bring it home, refilling the stand with water whenever necessary. A few tricks of the trade can help holiday celebrants maintain lush, awe-inspiring Christmas trees throughout the holiday season. c – Metro Creative

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Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 19


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20 • Gift Guide

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Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 21


Holiday Host or Hostess Gifts

Gift Ideas for the Host or Hostess or Even for Your Own Holiday Table Just a few items perfect for the Host or Hostess or even for your own holiday table.

For Your Holiday Table Pull the holiday spirit into the home with Holiday Coasters decorated with hand-drawn, horsedrawn carriages of winter’s eve. Both Holiday and everyday coasters are available and range from $9.99 to $24 for a set of 4 (4x4) coasters with a Non-Slip Silicone Bottom. Restaurant-grade,

BPA-free. 100% melamine. Hand polished with high gloss finish. Durable, shatter-resistant and heat—resistant. Also from Q Squared NYC is the Aurora Collection, a crystal-cut inspired drinkware line featuring a stemless wine glass (MSRP $12), DOF tumbler (MSRP $12) and highball tumbler (MSRP $14). The Aurora Collection resembles the look of crystal, but is break-resistant, BPA-free and dishwasher safe. Made with 100% Tritan, The Aurora glasses are durable with heavy gauge sidewalls and bases offered in four different colors – Crystal, Topaz, Ruby

and Twilight. Available at: www. QSquaredNYC.com Shaker33, the best cocktail shaker since Prohibition. The modern and sophisticated patent pending design includes several new features that solve the woes of the classic cocktail shaker and allows consumers to effortlessly create exquisite professional cocktails whether you are an amateur or pro. Lightweight and Shatterproof, Shaker33 holds 24 ounces of liquid and can be shaken with one hand.

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22 • Gift Guide

Visit our website for monthly specials

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Leak-proof, Easy to Open, and Contains a Locking Top and Dual Strainer. Mix perfect Margaritas, Martinis, Mojitos, and other beverages with and without alcohol. Shaker33 is made from Tritan and designed so that your drink is efficiently chilled, but your hands are not. The patented straining design offers two sides for straining - smaller holes for a finer strain, and larger holes for a faster pour. Ice Won’t Block the Liquid Flow with this Strainer. MSRP: $29.95 Available at: www.Shaker33.com Cork Pops Wine Glass Writers are

an easy and creative way to help your guests keep track of their wine glasses and even dinner or dessert plates. These pens can be used to write menus or even personalize gifts. They are available in Metallic and Pastel varieties. MSRP $7, Metallic and $11.50, Pastel. Available at: www. corkpops.com All information supplied by press releases submitted to The Signal.

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Gifts that Stimulate Imaginations

Gift Ideas to Challenge the Mind

Here’s a listing of some wonderful, imaginative gifts. Anything that can stimulate the mind, give back to the community or promote physical activity is high on our list.

Give Back with Bears For Humanity Bears for Humanity is a leading social commerce company committed to helping its community and the earth. From farm to fulfillment, the products are made using only certified organic materials and Fair Trade practices, while employing at-risk women from welfare-work programs right in the U.S. The “BUY One, give ONE” program provides a bear to a child in need for every bear purchased. With a variety of bears and animals to choose from, Bears for Humanity has something for everyone. MSRP: $25, $45. www.bearsforhumanity.com

Stimulate Imagination with: Brackitz

With just a few tools at their disposal, including wooden planks and oneof-a-kind plastic connectors, children are given the opportunity to use their imagination to construct entirely new worlds by playing on their own or with friends. So build out, build tall or build wide – there is no limit! And since the line is made completely in the USA, parents can rest-assure that they are providing their child with a durable construction set that also promotes STEM, no matter what skill level. MSRP: $19.99 - $99.99. https:// brackitz.com/

CogniToys CogniToys are the award-winning, Cloud-connected smart toy Dinosaurs that are changing the way kids learn and play. The Dinosaurs are smart devices in toy form, tailored just for kids to provide an educational and entertaining experience without the need for a screen. Powered by Elemental Path’s “Friendgine” and IBM’s Watson™ technologies, CogniToys™ respond to thousands of questions across multiple topics with age-appropriate answers. The cute and curious 7-inch Dinos are

Wi-Fi-enabled and update regularly as new content becomes available. The toy explores favorite colors, animals and more to customize engagement as well. Each toy comes with access to the CogniToys Parent Panel, a platform that provides analytics on a child’s progress across content modules for parents to review. MSRP: $99. https://cognitoys. com/

Cooperative Games from Peaceable Kingdom Peaceable Kingdom creates award-winning cooperative games for kids. In cooperative games the players work together to defeat the game rather than each other. Kids learn to work together as a team in respectful and compassionate ways. They learn to share, make decisions together and

Designed to ignite creativity, Brackitz is an award-winning innovative new construction line that encourages open-ended, imaginative play like no other construction set on the market today.

24 • Gift Guide

Signal Multimedia • 2016


trust one another while also having fun. Peaceable Kingdom cooperative games organically create community among the players. Additionally, many of the games in the Peaceable Kingdom line are 100% Green. That means that they are printed with soy-based inks, utilize corn-based plastics and are made with Forest Stewardship Council certified paper and wood. A variety of games are available for children and for families. MSRP: $9.99 to $24.99. www.peaceablekingdom. com

Stay Active with Mobo Cruisers It is the mission of Asa Products to provide “WOW, WOW, WOW” experience through service, innovations, and style. Its number one priority is to develop and deliver products that improve the lives of others and encourage a fit and fun lifestyle. Asa Products has been in the active lifestyle products business for more than a decade and its Mobo Cruiser line continues to expand for both children and adults with new cruisers and licensed products. These

three wheeled cruisers are sure to delight. MSRP: $99 and up. www.mobocruiser.com

Enchantails Just in time for the holidays, introducing a magical, mermaid-inspired slumber bag + book set, Enchantails, built around real-life places in the ocean for children to explore. Enchantails and the world of Oceana—where the books’ adventures take place—is created by Southern California entrepreneurs, Tristy and Mark Viniello. Each Slumber Bag set includes: an adventure book, a carry tote (also for easy storage), a decorator pillow, a slumber bag featuring glow-in-the-darkthread, and wall decals featuring the Mermaids with their Sea Buddies. The first 3 of the 12 Enchantails Slumber Bag Sets - Mermaid Kelani, Mermaid Lucienne, and Mermaid Tasi - can be purchased online nationwide at ToysRUs.com , BedBathBeyond.com , Macys.com , and of course at Enchantails. com. MSRP: $149.99 All information supplied by press releases submitted to The Signal.

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Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 25


Gifts for Him or Her

Gift Ideas for the Person Who Has Everything

Jasmine from Stadler Form Jasmine beckons you to slow down and breathe in deeply—a gentle stream of fragrance. Elevate the senses, choosing the pure essential oil best suited as a homeopathic remedy or for aromatherapy, meeting those needs in a well-balanced space every minute of the day. Her long running time and low maintenance makes her ideal for home or office. Available in white, black, berry, metal, lime, bronze and blue. MSRP $59.99. www.StadlerFormUSA. com. Also available at Bed Bath and Beyond.

Hyleys Tea Gift Box Sets The rich bouquet, delightful taste and all-natural flavors of the Nature’s Harmony, Exquisite English and Gold collections make an ideal cup of tea for

drinking in the morning, afternoon or after dinner. These premium tea blends will allow consumers to give the gift of a pure English experience. Individual tea bags packed in gold foil. Depending on Collection, flavors may include: Green tea & Lemon, Green tea & Mint, Green tea & Chamomile, Black tea with Melissa & Mint, Black tea with Rosehip and Hibiscus, Black tea & Lemon, Black tea & Linden Blossom, Green Tea and Black Tea, English Aristocratic Tea, English Special Blend, English Green Tea, Passion Fruit, Earl Grey, English Green Tea with Jasmine Green tea & Lemon, Green tea & Mint, and Green tea &

26 • Gift Guide

the unmistakable and iconic likenesses of The Imperial Death Star, Boba Fett, Darth Vader himself and the classic Imperial Stormtrooper. MSRP $19.99, www.underground-toys.com

Star Wars: Kitchen Timer BB-8 or Deathstar Chamomile. Collections range from $17.99 - $69.99. www.HyleysTeaOnline.com

Lightsaber Barbeque Tongs With Football Season in full swing, tailgating is on everyone’s mind. Sizzle and char-grill your best steaks with this set of barbecue tongs while entertaining guests with authentic Star Wars sound effects. They’re shaped just like Darth Vader’s famous Lightsaber weapon and feature a heat-resistant plastic handle, metal tongs, and a red storage case. Rule the grill and the galaxy with the power of the dark side at your command. Heat-resistant plastic handle with metal tongs, comes with a red storage case. Authentic Star Wars sound effects. MSRP $39.99. Available at Amazon. com

Just like the real bb-8, the bb-8 countdown timer is a feisty little one and no mistake. Simply rotate his head to the required start time to start the countdown (up to 60 minutes)

and BB-8 will let out a ring when the timer reaches zero. With rubber feet to prevent surface scratches, the BB-8 Kitchen Timer will make the perfect kitchen companion for any chef. MSRP $19.99. www.underground-toys.com

Star Wars: Figural Fridge Magnets: Set of 4 Get stuck on Star Wars, or get Star Wars stuck on your fridge! Featuring

Signal Multimedia • 2016


Star Wars: I am Darth Vader Apron We find your lack of steak disturbing. By harnessing the power of the Dark Side, we’ve somehow made cooking dinner that much more exciting. Whether you’re turning a well done Tauntaun steak over a bare lightsaber blade or pulling a dish of blue mac and cheese from the oven, these brilliant Darth Vader Print Apron will keep clothes grime free. MSRP $19.99. www.underground-toys.com

Star Wars: BB-8 Teapot Set A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away ... we found this awesome BB-8 Teapot Set! Tea

sonic device. MSRP $19.99. www. underground-toys.com

drinkers and Star Wars fans will rejoice at this fun and functional gift that will warm hearts as much as BB-8 does in The Force Awakens. MSRP $29.99 www. underground-toys.com

Marvel: Captain America Cutting Board

Dr. Who: New Twelfth Doctor Sonic Screwdriver As any avid Doctor Who fan knows, the Season 9 opener of Doctor Who marked entry into unfamiliar territory: It left the Twelfth Doctor sonic screwdriver-less after he lost the iconic tool to the creator of the Daleks, Davros. Much to fans’ delight, the season finale of that season finally rectified the situation, and now Underground Toys is doing the same for Doctor Who fans, unveiling its officially licensed Twelfth Doctor Sonic Screwdriver toy replica. Newly redesigned with blue and green light modes. It can open most locks, detect all manner of deadly rays, read bio-signs and generate sonic waves of great power. Static, pulsate and chase light modes, four sound FX and is a true replication of the Doctor’s trusty

To feed fans’ Marvel frenzy, Underground Toys’ new Captain America Movie Shield Cutting Board is inspired by Captain America’s shield in Marvel’s popular summer blockbuster - Captain America: Civil War. The acetate construction of this cutting board makes it not only durable but also resistant to household germs. This handy worktop saver provides a hygienic and odor-, heat- and stain-resistant temporary kitchen work surface. The Captain America Movie Shield Cutting Board is also reasonably priced – this gift under $25 for someone who is a fan of superhero movies, likes to cook, or wants to express both of those things together (and it would make the perfect addition to any man cave bar)! MSRP $14.99. www.underground-toys.com.

Wicall’s Carpets & Flooring Largest Selection of Carpet & Vinyl in stock Ready for Installation for the Holidays

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2016 • signalscv.com

This Holiday Season let Wicall’s put something under your tree Financing Available O.A.C.

Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 27


Gifts of Literacy

Gift Ideas for the Person Who Loves to Read

Gifting books is always a good idea. The following are a few interesting titles for your consideration this holiday season. As much as electronic gadgets are great, sometimes they need to be put away. There is no better time than now to gather the little ones (and even the bigger kids too) and read a story together.

Curious George, Paddington, Madeline and Corduroy Once again, The Kohl’s Cares Collection brings together a collection of classic books which are musts for every library. These stories have entertained children for many, many years. Beloved hardcover books and classic characters including Curious George, Paddington, Madeline and Corduroy are available now through the end of December for just $5 each. Perfectly priced for all of the little ones on your list. And the best part, 100 percent of the net profits support children’s health initiatives nationwide. “Our program is simple and powerful. The Kohl’s Cares collection is a wonderful way for our customers to have a hand in helping the community by purchasing quality gifts that support children’s health initiatives across the country. It’s a great way to embrace the spirit of giving during the holidays,” said Jen Johnson, Kohl’s vice president of corporate communications. Available at all Kohl’s stores.

28 • Gift Guide

The Book of Kringle - Legend of the North Pole, by Derek Velez Partridge, Mary Packard Once ruled by a strong fisted king, the legendary North Pole was not a place of laughter and merriment as we now know it to be. The harsh King Kringle forced his elves, including his kind-hearted brother Kris, to work in the polar crystal mines. But just before Christmas, the King became enraged when he discovered that a secret benefactor began leaving gold coins in the stockings of his worker elves which they then used to buy time off for Christmas. His rage in their merriment results in a revolt of the elves. Finally, a prophesy about Santa Claus was delivered by an elf child and a year passes as they await the return of Santa Claus to rightfully take his place as ruler of the North Pole. A little longer read but perfect for those cuddle moments. Ages 4-8. Available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other book retailers.

Alpha-Mania Adventures,

Ruth Rumack’s Learning Space Inc. Veteran educator and academic support specialist Ruth Rumack founded Ruth Rumack’s Learning Space Inc. to incorporate phonetic building blocks with playtime. She has now released her new children’s book series, the Alpha-Mania Adventures, as an innovative five-book set that ignites imagination and gives children the foundation to become capable and joyful readers.

Signal Multimedia • 2016


Interactive, entertaining, and educational, the Alpha-Mania Adventures series: • Help pre-reading children learn five phonological awareness skills—rhyming, blending, alliteration, segmenting, and sound manipulation— through captivating, pirate-themed stories • Contain phonics activities, which ask children to “hunt” for letters and objects within captivating, colorful illustrations • Include an introduction

on phonological awareness and phonics for parents & educators, and valuable guides on letter sounds and formations • Allow parents to bond with their children while creating a stress-free educational environment • Promote learning in an active, playful, and memorable way Available on Amazon and www.rumackresources.com/ All information supplied by press releases submitted to The Signal.

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30 • Gift Guide

Signal Multimedia • 2016


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Last-Minute Holiday Guide • 31


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32 • Gift Guide

Get unlimited visits and thrills-for-all-ages fun in 2017 with a Six Flags Season Pass. For a limited time, buy four Magic Mountain Season Passes at $79.99 each and get four FREE Hurricane Harbor Season Passes and four FREE Season Parking passes. Enjoy a year of non-stop fun at the Thrill Capital of the World and be one of the first to ride, play, and triumph on the new Justice League Battle for Metropolis in summer 2017. For the little thrill seekers, there’s Bugs Bunny World, and on hot summer days, Hurricane Harbor’s dozens of water adventures are guaranteed to provide relief from the heat. Don’t miss out on the best entertainment value around…buy now!

Thrill Capital of the World Signal Multimedia • 2016

JUSTICE LEAGUE and all related characters and elements © & ™ DC Comics. (s16)

LOONEY TUNES: TM & © Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. (S16)

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