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Leisure activities: the key to a happy retirement

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Are you approaching retirement? You need to start thinking about what you’ll do with the priceless gift of time that you’ll be receiving. To fully appreciate this new stage of your life rather than dreading it, you just have to be well prepared. So take stock of your interests, and take control of the situation now by listing all the activities you would like to indulge in when you’re well rested.

Fun activities
Consider a variety of activities that you can do alone, as a couple, with family, or friends. This is a great opportunity to take up knitting in order to relax, try new restaurants with your spouse, go to shows or sports events with the family, or contact friends you haven’t seen for ages. Quilting, poker, reading, golf, movies, jigsaw puzzles, hiking, museums—the possibilities are endless and so you’re sure to find a hobby that is in tune with your interests.

Classes for enriching the mind
You never had time to pursue your passions? The time has come to remedy the situation; take a class in music, art, sports, computers, language, cooking, or sewing. Take classes to develop a long-neglected talent, to perfect an art that you’ve already familiar with, or to get acquainted with a new discipline.

Discussion groups
Will you miss all those discussions with your work colleagues? Join a group to share your passions or just to meet people and exchange ideas and opinions. You might want to join a book or bridge club, a bowling or hockey league, or do lawn bowling or sing in a choir.

If you take the time to plan your leisure activities, your retirement will be relaxing but never boring!

Make the most of your retirement by planning some leisure activities.

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A Merry and Safe Holiday: Five Tips for a Pet-Friendly Christmas

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Ensuring the Safety and Happiness of Your Pets During the Festive Season.

The holiday season is a time of joy and festivity, not just for us but also for our beloved pets. However, the increased activity, unfamiliar guests, and festive decorations can sometimes be overwhelming and even hazardous for them. To ensure that your furry friends enjoy the holidays as much as you do, here are five essential tips for creating a pet-friendly holiday environment.

1. Maintain Routine: Pets thrive on routine, and the holiday season can disrupt their usual schedule. To minimize stress, maintain regularity in their feeding, walking, and playtime. This consistency provides a sense of normalcy and security amid the holiday chaos.

2. Create a Safe Haven: The influx of guests and the noise can be overwhelming for pets. Set aside a quiet room or space where they can retreat. Equip this area with essentials like food, water, and their bed. This safe zone allows them to escape the festivities and relax.

3. Supervise Your Pet: Keep a close eye on your pet to prevent any mischief or accidents. Decorations and holiday plants can be intriguing but dangerous if chewed or ingested. Supervision is key to preventing these potential hazards.

4. Monitor Their Diet: Holiday foods can pose risks to pets, with many traditional dishes containing ingredients toxic to animals. Ensure all human food is out of their reach and avoid deviating from their regular diet with unfamiliar treats.

5. Emergency Preparedness: In case of an emergency, such as ingestion of toxic substances, have a plan ready. Know the location and contact details of local veterinary clinics that offer emergency services. Familiarize yourself with the symptoms of poisoning and the immediate actions to take if such a situation arises.

The holidays are a time to celebrate with all members of your family, including the furry ones. Following these tips ensures that your pets stay safe, stress-free, and happy throughout the festive season. Remember, a little preparation and awareness can go a long way in making the holidays enjoyable for everyone, pets included.

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Holiday Crafting: Create Your Own DIY Christmas Ornaments and Decorations

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Easy and Festive DIY Ideas to Spruce Up Your Holiday Decor.

The holiday season is a time for creativity and warmth, and what better way to embrace this spirit than by crafting your own Christmas decorations? Making your own ornaments and decorations personalizes your holiday decor and brings a unique sense of joy and nostalgia to your celebrations. Here are three simple yet delightful DIY Christmas decoration ideas to try with your family.

1. Hand-Painted Wooden Ornaments: Start with plain wooden craft ornaments, available at any craft store, and gather some acrylic paints and brushes. Unleash your creativity by painting festive designs such as snowflakes, holly, reindeer, or Santa Claus. Add a personalized touch by inscribing your family members’ names on them. These ornaments can add a homemade charm to your Christmas tree or become cherished keepsakes.

2. Festive Mason Jar Lanterns: Transform ordinary Mason jars into enchanting lanterns. Coat the jars with glue and sprinkle glitter for a snowy effect. Insert small LED candles or string lights to create a warm, twinkling glow. These lanterns can beautify any space, from your mantle to your dining table, adding a cozy and inviting ambiance.

3. Felted Snowflake Garland: Craft a charming snowflake garland using white and light blue felt. Cut out snowflake shapes and stitch them together, embellishing them with silver beads or sequins for a bit of sparkle. This garland can be draped along banisters, walls, or doorways, adding a festive flair to your home.

DIY Christmas decorations are a fun and meaningful way to engage in the holiday spirit. They enhance your home’s festive atmosphere and offer a memorable crafting experience with your family. So, head to your local craft store, gather your supplies, and start creating your own holiday magic.

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Splendor in Gifting: Elevate the Festive Season with Luxury Presents

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Indulging Loved Ones with High-End Gifts This Holiday Season.

The holiday season transforms the world into a shimmering display of lights and colors, setting the perfect stage for giving gifts that sparkle with luxury and elegance. If you’re looking to make a grand gesture this festive season, indulging in luxury gifts for your loved ones could be the way to go. Whether for a partner, parent, or child, high-quality luxury items can become cherished tokens of affection and appreciation.

The Essence of Luxury: Luxury gifts stand out for their association with prestigious brands and unmatched quality. These gifts often come with a higher price tag, but the value lies in their ability to leave a lasting impression. The key is choosing items that resonate with the recipient’s tastes and preferences, ensuring that the gift is meaningful and exquisite.

Gift Ideas for the Discerning Recipient: To help you in your search for the perfect luxury gift, consider these top-of-the-range products that are sure to enchant:

  1. Elegant Watches: Timepieces from renowned brands that combine functionality with sophisticated design.
  2. Exquisite Jewelry: Pieces like necklaces, bracelets, or earrings that add a touch of glamour to any ensemble.
  3. Designer Handbags: High-quality handbags that offer both style and utility.
  4. Premium Lighters: Sophisticated lighters that blend craftsmanship with elegance.
  5. Stylish Sunglasses: Luxury sunglasses that provide a chic and practical accessory.
  6. Fine Kitchen Knives: Exceptional knives that blend precision with culinary artistry.
  7. Exclusive Perfumes: Designer fragrances that leave a memorable scent.
  8. Aged Spirits: Premium spirits like 25-year-old Scotch for the connoisseur.
  9. High-end Coffee Machines: For the coffee aficionado, a machine that delivers barista-quality brews at home.
  10. Works of Art: Invest in art pieces that can beautify a home and become a topic of conversation.
  11. Luxurious Pens: Pens that offer an unparalleled writing experience, perfect for the avid writer.

Presentation Matters: Enhance the luxury of your gift with elegant wrapping. Use high-quality wrapping paper, lustrous fabric ribbons, or even reusable wooden boxes to add an extra layer of sophistication.

Luxury gifts are more than mere objects; they are experiences wrapped in elegance and grandeur. This holiday season, elevate your gift-giving with items that dazzle and convey the depth of your appreciation and love. Whether it’s a timeless piece of jewelry, a bottle of aged Scotch, or a designer perfume, choose a luxury gift that will be treasured for years to come.

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Final Preparations: 3-Weeks to Christmas

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Tackling the Key Tasks for a Seamless Holiday Celebration.

With Christmas just three weeks away, the festive season is reaching its peak. This is the time to focus on finalizing preparations to ensure a smooth and enjoyable holiday. From confirming guest attendance to choosing the perfect party outfit, the tasks this week are all about fine-tuning the details of your holiday celebration.

1. Finalize Guest Confirmations: Reach out to everyone you’ve invited to your Christmas gathering to confirm their attendance. This step is crucial for finalizing catering counts, seating arrangements, and other accommodations. It’s also an opportunity to answer any questions your guests might have and to communicate any important details about the event.

2. Choosing Your Festive Outfit: Your Christmas party is an occasion to dress up and enjoy the festivities in style. Visit local boutiques or formalwear rental outlets to find an outfit that makes you feel festive and fabulous. Whether you opt for a classic look or something more contemporary, remember that comfort is key to enjoying the night.

3. Curating the Perfect Party Playlist: Music sets the mood for any party. Spend some time creating playlists that complement each phase of your event. A softer, mellow playlist is ideal for cocktail hour and mealtime, while upbeat tunes are perfect for dancing and celebrating. Tailoring your music to the flow of the evening will enhance the overall experience for you and your guests.

4. Gift Wrapping: Dedicate some time to wrapping the presents you’ve so thoughtfully chosen. Creative and thoughtful wrapping can make your gifts even more special. Consider setting up a wrapping station with all the necessary materials – paper, ribbons, tags, and decorations – to make the process efficient and enjoyable.

As Christmas draws near, completing these tasks can significantly reduce last-minute stress, fully immersing yourself in the joy of the season. This week’s efforts in finalizing details, from guest confirmations to wrapping presents, pave the way for a festive and memorable holiday celebration.

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Crafting Love: 15 Handmade Gift Ideas for a Thoughtful Christmas

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Personalize Your Holiday Giving with Creative, Handcrafted Presents.

As the festive season approaches, the quest for the perfect Christmas gifts begins. In an era where online shopping reigns supreme, handmade gifts offer a deeply personal touch. Creating a gift with your hands is an expression of creativity and a testament to the love and thought you put into each present.

Here are 15 heartwarming and creative handmade gift ideas that cater to a range of skills, from crafting to cooking, ensuring there’s something special for everyone on your list:

  1. Knitted Accessories: Craft cozy knitted items like throws, scarves, or slippers – perfect for keeping your loved ones warm during the winter.
  2. Homemade Alcohol: Brew your own gin, beer, or wine, adding a personal touch to a classic gift.
  3. Handcrafted Jewelry: Design unique bracelets, rings, or necklaces, making a fashionable and memorable present.
  4. Bath Bombs: Create soothing bath bombs for a relaxing spa experience at home.
  5. Scented Candles: Make candles with delightful fragrances to add a cozy ambiance to any room.
  6. Decorative Picture Frames: Craft personalized picture frames to preserve cherished memories.
  7. Jams and Spreads: Prepare homemade jams or spreads, perfect for foodies.
  8. Christmas Decorations: Create festive decorations like wreaths or baubles to add holiday cheer.
  9. Tasty Marinades: Mix up flavorful marinades – a great gift for grilling enthusiasts.
  10. Custom Spice Mixes: Blend your own spice mixes tailored to your recipient’s taste preferences.
  11. Clay Pots: Fashion clay pots for plant lovers to showcase their greenery.
  12. Potpourri: Blend a fragrant potpourri as a delightful sensory gift.
  13. Fancy Soaps: Make artisanal soaps with unique scents and ingredients.
  14. Homemade Body Care Products: Create creams or exfoliants for a luxury skincare touch.
  15. Cork Drink Coasters: Craft stylish drink coasters from Cork for a practical and chic gift.

Handmade gifts are not just items; they are a showcase of time, effort, and personal attention. This Christmas, embrace the joy of making and giving something unique. These gifts will bring smiles to your loved ones’ faces and support local shops where you can buy all the necessary materials. Get creative, spread joy, and make this holiday season one to remember with your heartfelt creations.

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Green Holiday Cheer: Five Eco-Friendly Tips for a Sustainable Christmas

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Embrace Eco-Conscious Practices to Celebrate a More Environmentally Friendly Holiday Season.

The holiday season is traditionally a time of joy and generosity, but it can also bring about excessive consumption and waste. This Christmas, there’s a growing need to balance the festive spirit with environmental responsibility. By adopting eco-friendly practices, you can celebrate a green Christmas that’s joyful and kind to the planet.

1. Conscious Gift-Giving: Rethink your approach to presents by choosing sustainable and meaningful gifts. Opt for experiences, homemade treats, or eco-friendly products. When it comes to wrapping, use recycled or reusable materials such as brown paper or fabric, reducing the amount of waste generated.

2. Eco-Friendly Christmas Tree Options: For a greener tree choice, consider a live, potted Christmas tree that can be replanted after the holidays, continuing its life cycle. Alternatively, an artificial tree made from recycled materials can be sustainable if used for several years.

3. Energy-Efficient Decorations: Illuminate your home with LED lights for your Christmas tree and decorations. LEDs are more energy-efficient than traditional incandescent lights, helping to reduce your energy consumption during the festive season.

4. Sustainable Food Choices: Plan your holiday meals with a focus on locally sourced, organic, and seasonal ingredients. This supports local farmers and reduces the carbon footprint associated with food transport. Also, creatively repurpose leftovers and compost any unavoidable food waste to minimize your impact on landfills.

5. Reuse and Recycle Practices: Encourage guests to bring reusable containers for leftovers, cutting down on single-use plastic waste. Additionally, set up designated recycling bins to ensure recyclable items from your holiday celebration are properly sorted and disposed of.

Celebrating a green Christmas doesn’t mean sacrificing the joy and warmth of the season. By incorporating these eco-friendly tips into your holiday traditions, you contribute to a healthier planet while still enjoying a festive and meaningful time with loved ones. This Christmas, let’s make choices that cherish the environment as much as we cherish our holiday traditions.

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Thank You to our Local Business Participants:

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Aders Insurance Agency, Inc (State Farm)

Aire Serv Heating and Air Conditioning

Apple Dumpling Learning Center

Apple House

Auto Care Clinic

Avery-Hess Realty, Marilyn King

Beaver Tree Services

Blake and Co. Hair Spa

Blue Mountain Creative Consulting

Blue Ridge Arts Council

Blue Ridge Education

BNI Shenandoah Valley

C&C's Ice Cream Shop

Card My Yard

CBM Mortgage, Michelle Napier

Christine Binnix - McEnearney Associates

Code Jamboree LLC

Code Ninjas Front Royal

Cool Techs Heating and Air

Down Home Comfort Bakery

Downtown Market

Dusty's Country Store

Edward Jones-Bret Hrbek

Explore Art & Clay

Family Preservation Services

First Baptist Church

Front Royal Independent Business Alliance

Front Royal/Warren County C-CAP

First Baptist Church

Front Royal Treatment Center

Front Royal Women's Resource Center

Front Royal-Warren County Chamber of Commerce

Fussell Florist

G&M Auto Sales Inc

Garcia & Gavino Family Bakery

Gourmet Delights Gifts & Framing

Green to Ground Electrical

Groups Recover Together

Habitat for Humanity

Groups Recover Together

House of Hope

I Want Candy

I'm Just Me Movement

Jean’s Jewelers

Jen Avery, REALTOR & Jenspiration, LLC

Key Move Properties, LLC

KW Solutions

Legal Services Plans of Northern Shenendoah

Main Street Travel

Makeover Marketing Systems

Marlow Automotive Group

Mary Carnahan Graphic Design

Merchants on Main Street

Mountain Trails

Mountain View Music

National Media Services

Natural Results Chiropractic Clinic

No Doubt Accounting

Northwestern Community Services Board

Ole Timers Antiques

Penny Lane Hair Co.

Philip Vaught Real Estate Management

Phoenix Project

Reaching Out Now

Rotary Club of Warren County

Royal Blends Nutrition

Royal Cinemas

Royal Examiner

Royal Family Bowling Center

Royal Oak Bookshop

Royal Oak Computers

Royal Oak Bookshop

Royal Spice

Ruby Yoga

Salvation Army

Samuels Public Library

SaVida Health

Skyline Insurance

Shenandoah Shores Management Group

St. Luke Community Clinic

Strites Doughnuts

Studio Verde

The Arc of Warren County

The Institute for Association & Nonprofit Research

The Studio-A Place for Learning

The Valley Today - The River 95.3

The Vine and Leaf

Valley Chorale

Vetbuilder.com

Warren Charge (Bennett's Chapel, Limeton, Asbury)

Warren Coalition

Warren County Democratic Committee

Warren County Department of Social Services

Warren County DSS Job Development

Warrior Psychotherapy Services, PLLC

WCPS Work-Based Learning

What Matters & Beth Medved Waller, Inc Real Estate

White Picket Fence

Woodward House on Manor Grade

King Cartoons

Front Royal, VA
61°
Light Rain
7:20 am4:50 pm EST
Feels like: 61°F
Wind: 1mph WSW
Humidity: 86%
Pressure: 29.78"Hg
UV index: 1
MonTueWed
43°F / 25°F
48°F / 28°F
46°F / 23°F

Upcoming Events

Dec
12
Tue
7:30 pm American Legion Community Band C... @ Boggs Chapel at R-MA
American Legion Community Band C... @ Boggs Chapel at R-MA
Dec 12 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
American Legion Community Band Christmas Concert @ Boggs Chapel at R-MA
The American Legion Community Band, located in Front Royal, Virginia, was formed in 1986 and has been playing concerts in the area ever since. The conductors and band members are all volunteer musicians from the local[...]
Dec
13
Wed
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Dec 13 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
Dec
16
Sat
7:00 am Pancake Breakfast @ Riverton United Methodist Church
Pancake Breakfast @ Riverton United Methodist Church
Dec 16 @ 7:00 am – 10:00 am
Pancake Breakfast @ Riverton United Methodist Church
Join us for pancakes, sausage, scrambled eggs, biscuits, sausage gravy, and juice/coffee! All are invited for this FREE event. Offering will be accepted.
10:00 am 10th Virginia Infantry Encampment @ Sky Meadows State Park
10th Virginia Infantry Encampment @ Sky Meadows State Park
Dec 16 @ 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
10th Virginia Infantry Encampment @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area. Journey back in time and immerse yourself in the sights, sounds, and smells of a Civil War Encampment during the holidays. Interact with the 10th VA Infantry, also known as the Valley Guards,[...]
1:00 pm The Nutcracker @ Skyline High School
The Nutcracker @ Skyline High School
Dec 16 @ 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
The Nutcracker @ Skyline High School
Italia Performing Arts is pleased to announce its own student production of The Nutcracker, a Christmas classic to be enjoyed by the whole family! When: Saturday, December 16th at 1:00 PM and 5:00 PM Where:[...]
Dec
17
Sun
10:00 am 10th Virginia Infantry Encampment @ Sky Meadows State Park
10th Virginia Infantry Encampment @ Sky Meadows State Park
Dec 17 @ 10:00 am – 2:00 pm
10th Virginia Infantry Encampment @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area. Journey back in time and immerse yourself in the sights, sounds, and smells of a Civil War Encampment during the holidays. Interact with the 10th VA Infantry, also known as the Valley Guards,[...]
Dec
20
Wed
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Dec 20 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
Dec
27
Wed
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Dec 27 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
Jan
1
Mon
5:30 am First Day Hikes at Sky Meadows @ Sky Meadows State Park
First Day Hikes at Sky Meadows @ Sky Meadows State Park
Jan 1 @ 5:30 am – 1:00 pm
First Day Hikes at Sky Meadows @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area: While the American tradition of celebrating the New Year occurs at midnight on New Year’s Eve, other cultures celebrate by enjoying the sunrise on New Year’s Day. As part of the continuing American[...]