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Baby’s First Christmas

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’Tis The Season 

 

Heartwarming treats for the holidays 

(Family Features) The holiday season is never complete without friends and HOL-Heartwarming-treats1family gathered ’round for festive cheer and merriment. Whether you’re the hostess with the mostest or an extroverted elf whose calendar is bursting at the seams, there’s no need to fret over what you’ll serve at your next event—even when you’re pressed for time.

According to the National Confectioners Association, 77 percent of adults include candy in Christmas stockings or gifts, 62 percent celebrate with a candy bowl at work or at home and 62 percent bake with candy or chocolate at the holidays. From candy canes to chocolate Santas, seasonal varieties are nearly endless and emerge long before Rudolph makes his rounds each Christmas Eve.

A nostalgic addition to the candy aisle this winter, the Nestlé Crunch Peanuts Collection inspired by Charles Schulz’s beloved Peanuts gang is fully decked for the holidays, complete with Charlie Brown, Snoopy and all of the characters you love. Hailing from the most influential comic strip of all time, read every day by 355 million people in 75 countries, the beloved characters span across newspapers, Emmy-winning television specials, a full length film and now, Nestlé Crunch chocolates.

Looking for a treat to bring to your next holiday gathering? In just 20 minutes, you can whip up these heartwarming Peppermint Crunch Fudge bars, featuring Nestlé Crunch miniatures. Your guests will love the texture of the crunchy milk chocolate paired with a burst of peppermint flavor. Plus, it’s a recipe so simple even the kids can join in on the baking fun.

For more holiday inspiration, visit VeryBestBaking.com.

HOL-Heartwarming-treats2Peppermint Crunch Fudge

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 10 minutes

Total time:  20 minutes

Serves: 25

28 Nestlé Crunch Bar Minis

3 cups Nestlé Toll House Bittersweet Chocolate Morsels

1 can (14 ounces) Nestlé Sweetened Condensed Milk

1/2 teaspoon of peppermint extract

1/4 cup crushed candy canes (or peppermint discs), divided in half

Line 9-by-9-inch pan with foil and spray with cooking spray. Place bars in even layer on bottom of pan.

Place chocolate chips, sweetened condensed milk and peppermint extract in medium saucepan over low heat. Stir until chips and milk are melted together. Mix in 1/8 cup crushed candy canes.

Once everything is melted together, spread evenly over bars in prepared pan. Immediately sprinkle with remaining crushed candy canes, pressing lightly into fudge. Cool until firm, then cover with plastic and place in refrigerator to harden completely. Cut into squares and serve.

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Letters to Santa

It’s that time of year again, when kids can’t wait to mail their letters to Santa! To help parents out, the Cedar Springs Post has set up a special North Pole drop box. Every year dozens of kids use our special box for express delivery to the North Pole, and we make sure Santa reads each and every one! So, if you’d like to send a letter to Santa, and maybe get it printed in the newspaper, just drop off your letter in the bright red box labeled “Santa Mail” (by Monday, December 21st to ensure it reaches Santa in time) outside our office at 36 E. Maple Street, or mail your letter to: Letters to Santa, c/o the Cedar Springs Post, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319.


 

DEAr sANtA

I WOULD LiKE

A MErMAiD

GAME A SCOOtEr

A EASY BAKE OVEN

A LEAP PAD

A SPELLinG GAME

A PErFECtiOn GAME

I WiLL BE GOOD

LOVE

Alexis


 

 

HOL-SantaLetter-ZekeDear Santa,

All I want for Christmas is:

Cars,

Trucks,

Trains,

Mega Blocks,

Board books by Eric Carle,

Board books by SAndra Boynton,

A Toy box,

bath toys,

and a new fedora.

Love,

Zeke Miles, age 23 months

p.s. my mom wants Season 3 of Supernatural.

 


 

From: Alanna

to: Santa Claws

North Pole

HOL-SantaLetter-Alanna-envelope

My Christmas List

• Hellow Kitty lip balm Set

• Shopkins Ultimate manicure Set

• Make it Your Own lip balm Set

• Radio

• full linzyStriling album

• FriendShip 2 Part necklius

• Dive Detective Kit

• Scrach art Pets

• Pet Jet lPS

• MIP StarPowe DYiry

• SpaKle & Glow crystals

• Deluxe Detectiv briefcase

• CryPlex

• Christmas Nailart

Alanna Miller

age 7,

Cedar Springs

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Tour of lights 2015

There’s nothing like the warm glow of Christmas lights this time of year to give you a good dose of Christmas cheer! The Springs Church, located at 135 N. Grant Street, is a new stop on this year’s Tour of lights, with their dancing light display choreographed to your favorite Christmas music. The show will run nightly from sundown to 8:30 p.m., through December 23.

So pack up the kids, go for a ride, and enjoy the decorations your friends and neighbors have put up this year. We’re sure you’ll find a few other treasures along the way!

1. The Springs Church, 135 N. Grant Street (enter off First Street). See their dancing light display choreographed to your favorite Christmas music. The show will run nightly from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., through December 23.

2. 88 N. Grant Street (Corner of Maple and Grant) Rosenberger home

3. 65 E. Muskegon, corner of First and Muskegon Streets. The home of Larry and Audrey Young is a classic home decorated with style.

4. Downtown Cedar Springs is aglow with lights and decorations on the lampposts and the town Christmas tree is at the corner of Main and Ash.

5. 427 Northland Drive, near the corner of South Street and Northland. See the 90-foot evergreen Christmas tree at the Reep family home.

6. The Fieldstone Meadows subdivision, first cul de sac, just off 18 Mile. Head north on Main Street in Cedar Springs, turn east on 18 Mile. Go around curve, past mobile home park, and then east into Fieldstone.

7. Subdivision off Pine Street (behind Wesco)

8. 830 19 Mile Rd, home of Burt and Wanda Drent. Take 17 Mile Rd west to Algoma, turn north on Algoma and go to 19 Mile, turn west. About 2 miles to house on left, corner of 19 Mile and Albrecht.

9. Vista View Estates, west off Algoma, south of 17 Mile Road.

10. 17 Mile Rd, between Paine and Long Lake.

11. 20 Mile Road, ½ mile west of White Creek.

12. Vantage Point, Algoma to 20 Mile, west on 20 Mile

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Baby’s First Christmas

Atlas-santa-hat1-cWe want to give you the opportunity to celebrate your baby’s very first Christmas in a special way. The  Cedar Springs POST will be featuring area newborns in “Baby’s First Christmas,” a special feature for babies celebrating their first Christmas.

Photos will be run at no cost to our readers, but space is limited so get your photos in early. Deadline is Monday, December 21 by 5 p.m. and pictures with name and date of birth will appear in the December 24th issue. We cannot guarantee return of photos. Show the community your precious gift!

Photos may be dropped off at the Cedar Springs POST – 36 E. Maple St., or mailed to Baby’s First Christmas, P.O. Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319, or emailed to news@cedarspringspost.com. Please include baby’s name, and birth date, as well as a contact name and phone number.

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Letters to Santa

It’s that time of year again, when kids can’t wait to mail their letters to Santa! To help parents out, the Cedar Springs Post has set up a special North Pole drop box. Every year dozens of kids use our special box for express delivery to the North Pole, and we make sure Santa reads each and every one! So, if you’d like to send a letter to Santa, and maybe get it printed in the newspaper, just drop off your letter in the bright red box labeled “Santa Mail” outside our office at 36 E. Maple Street, or mail your letter to: Letters to Santa, c/o the Cedar Springs Post, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319.


 

dear Santa

can I PleaSe

have Pokemon balls

and Pokemon, a

Iron Man case for

my Phone, and

AA batterys

Love – Jolly Lucas

 


 

 

Dear Santa i want a

• Monster truck

• Legos

• psL/-playstation four

• playstation 3 games

Love Jackson

Gregory

 


 

 

Dear Santa,

My Name is

Christain :). Im a

good boy.

1. Pomekmon Stuff.

2. My little Pony – figures

and house.

3. Match box cars.

4. Race Track

Thank you Santa,

Love,

Christain Austin

OXOXOX

 

 


 

 

Dear Santa I know what

I want for Chirstmas.

Monster high Dolls / Legos /

notebook / books / stufed owl /

stufed kitten / stufed fox /

cat toy / 3 D.S. cup

love

Natalie rose Stevenson

 

LTS-Jesus-blue2


 

LTS-Jesus-blue

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LTS-Turkey-orange2

 

LTS-Turkey-orange

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

LTS-Rainbow-pink2LTS-Rainbow-pink

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

LTS-BrooklynArcher-pictureDear Santa,

Hi, how are you?

ope you are fine. Well

This is Brookyn Archer

again. I hope you remember

me. My mom is writting this

for me because I cant write

very well yet because I’m

only 4 years old but you

know this already. I would

like you to try and bring

me a baby alive doll

but the new one that poops out

food. And paw patrol stuff and

pop the pig game and that

pie face game mommy said

a lot of kids want that game.

I want a barbie doll house

for my barbies. And maybe

some stuff for my brother

River to  he likes video

games and football he also

likes Under Aroumer And

call of duty legos. Thank you.

I love you Santa

Love Brooklyn Archer

from Cedar Springs.


 

 

Dear Santa,

Santa all I want

for Christmas is under armour stuff. And a Millitary football

and also an Xbox1. But

Santa know what I really

want, is to be with my

family and friends. I want

to watch all my little cousins

Christmas wishes come true

So Santa if you cant

get me the things I want

can you at least bring my

cousins what they want.

And also my little

sister Brooklyn Archer every thing she wants.

Thank you.

Sincerly

River Oligney age 12

from Cedar Springs.

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Make the Season Brighter for Families in Need in Your Community

HOL-Make-season-brighter

(Family Features) For many of us, a cozy winter’s night isn’t complete without milk and cookies or a warm cup of hot cocoa. But families in need in your community may be missing out on milk and its nine essential nutrients.

More than 46 million Americans – including 12 million children – rely on Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization. Milk is one of the most requested yet least donated items year round, but even more so in the winter months when food banks are even busier.

In fact, according to Feeding America, food bank clients receive an average of less than one gallon of milk per person per year, because while Americans are generous with canned and dry goods, many don’t think to donate milk because it’s perishable. This leaves many families with limited access to milk’s essential nutrients, including 8 grams of high-quality protein per 8 ounce serving.

Don’t just get together, give together

Since 2014, The Great American Milk Drive has helped deliver more than 8.5 million servings of highly desired and nutrient-rich milk to hungry families who need it most—but there’s still so much more to do. There are a number of ways that you can help kids and families in your own community this season:

Volunteer at your local food bank or food pantry. 

While donations are always appreciated, your local Feeding America food bank and food pantries can often use extra hands – especially at this time of year. Gather your friends, family or coworkers and donate your time to feed those in your community. There are many different opportunities to help across the country – at local food pantries and even virtually. Visit milklife.com/give to find your local food bank and learn more.

Collect food donations when you host.

Hosting for the holidays? You can benefit families in need in your community by asking guests to bring something to donate to a food bank. While most people think of canned or dry goods, perishable foods like fresh produce and milk are often needed, particularly around the holidays. Find your nearest food bank, check its needs and any donation guidelines at FeedingAmerica.org.

Donate highly-desired, nutrient-rich fresh milk.

By entering your zip code at milklife.com/give, you can ensure that nutrient-rich milk is delivered to a local food bank to help nourish children in your own community.

What many people don’t realize is how big this problem is—one in seven Americans face hunger, including 15 million children, and it’s a problem that impacts all sorts of families, in urban, suburban and rural communities. And milk is one of the most requested nutritious items by food bank clients, but, it’s rarely donated. Milk isn’t just a drink, it’s a nutrient powerhouse – but, only if people have access to it. Help local families put milk on the table for their children this season.

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Celebrate the joy of Christmas 

 

At one of the churches in our community:

Dec. 13, 20, 24, 27: The Springs Church invites you every Sunday morning throughout December for our messages series Christmas Around The World.  Throughout this series we will enjoy Christmas music from around the world and will learn what God is doing to bring peace on earth, goodwill to men. We offer two services at 9:45 and 11:15 a.m. Also this year, The Springs Church is excited to welcome the community to an outdoor musical light show in our parking lot! The Christmas Light Show will run nightly form sundown to 8:30 p.m. December 4th-23rd. Then our Christmas Eve Candlelight Service will be held on Thursday, December 24th at 7 p.m. This special family service will help you connect and reflect on the true meaning of Christmas. Kids are welcome to wear their pajamas and will get their own glow sticks! Please join us. We’re located at 135 N. Grant St., Cedar Springs (Corner of Oak & Grant). For more info on any of the events happening at The Springs Church this month visit our website www.thespringschurch.info.

Dec. 13, 20, 24: Cedar Springs United Methodist Church invites you to join us for worship throughout Advent as we prepare for Our Coming Savior every Sunday morning at 8:00 a.m. and 10:15 a.m. We will celebrate Christmas Eve with candlelight and Holy Communion during two services on December 24th at 7:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. The church is located at 140 S. Main Street, Cedar Springs.

Dec. 13, 24:  Solon Center Wesleyan Church invites you to come and share in the joy of our Children’s Christmas Program, Bethlehem...Nothing Ever Happens Here, this Sunday, December 13. The children will perform in both services, 9:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. We also invite you to join us in celebrating the Good News of the birth of our Savior in a special Christmas Eve Candlelight service on Thursday, December 24 at 6 p.m. All welcome! The church is located at 15671 Algoma Avenue NE, Cedar Springs.

December 13, 24: Resurrection Lutheran Church welcomes you December 13, at 9:30 a.m. to enjoy a Christmas play entitled, Low and Behold. Our Christmas Eve Candlelight Worship will be December 24, at 7 p.m. We welcome you to join us as we celebrate the birth of the Savior, Jesus Christ. We are located at 180 Northland Drive, Sand Lake, MI. 49343. For questions please call 616-636-5502.

December 13, 25: Christmas Hymn Sing at Pioneer Church, Sunday, December 13, at 6 p.m. Located at The Cedarfield Community Center, 3592 17 Mile RD, Cedar Springs. (Next to Meijer.) We will also be having a Christmas morning service at 10 a.m.

Dec.18: Come on out Friday, December 18, at 7 p.m., to Cedar Springs Christian Church “The Old Chapel,” on the property of Creative Technologies Academy, 360 W. Pine Street. All are welcome to come and enjoy a special Candle Light Service/Christmas Carols to Celebrate of the birth of the Christ Child complete with twinkling lights surrounded by quaint barn wood, to draw hearts close to the Reason for the Season. Visit us online: wwwcedarspingschristianchurch.org, or if you have questions please call 696-1160.

Dec. 20: North Kent Community Church will present “Christmas for Congo” at the Christmas Service on Sunday, December 20, at 10 a.m. Special guest Rev. Deo Mwamba, formerly from the Congo, will share what Christmas is like in the Congo. We will celebrate with songs, themes and food, similar to how they would celebrate Christmas in the Congo. We will receive a “Christmas Love” offering to help send Treasures (Audio Bibles) to the Congo as gifts. Please invite family and friends to this Christmas Service. It will be a great time to give the gift of Christ to the Congo! NKCC is located at 1480 Indian Lakes Rd. NE, Sparta, MI 49345 (just west of Pennington Rd.) Questions? Call Pastor Craig Carter at 616.550.6398.

Dec. 20: South Ensley United Methodist church welcomes you to a Christmas Evening Service on December 20 at 7:00 pm.  Join us for an evening of music, worship and birthday celebration of our Savior. 13600 Cypress Ave, Sand Lake.

Dec. 20, 24:  Hillcrest Community Church of God welcomes you on Sunday, December 20, at 10:45 a.m. to enjoy our Christmas play. Please come be a part of our audience this year, as we watch what happens when Baby Jesus leaves the building! Young and old work together to bring this adventure to life with singing and dancing and laughter…Oh my!  Sounds like fun! Then the Christmas Eve Candlelight service will be December 24 at 7:00 p.m. Won’t you join us in celebrating the birth of The King! There will be refreshments following both services. We are located at 5994  18 Mile Rd, Cedar Springs, MI. For questions please call 616-696-9333.

Dec. 24: East Nelson UMC, 9024 – 18 Mile Rd. NE, Cedar Springs, will be having a Candlelight Service on Thursday, December 24 at 7 p.m.

December 24:  Rockford Springs Community Church invites you to join us for our Christmas Eve Candlelight Service on Thursday, December 24 at 9:00 p.m.  Rejoice at the birth of our Savior with fellow believers! We are located at 5815 -14 Mile Rd NE, Rockford, MI (2 1/2 miles East of US 131).  For questions, please call 616.696.3656.

Dec. 24: Holy Spirit Episcopal Church will be celebrating Christmas with a traditional worship service and Eucharist on Thursday, December 24 at 7 p.m.  All welcome. We are located at 1200 Post Drive NE, Belmont, at the corner of Pine Island and Post drives, just west of Exit 95 of US 131. Please visit our website at www.holyspiritbelmont.org.

Dec. 24/25, Jan 1 & 3:  Mary Queen of Apostles Catholic Church in Sand Lake will celebrate Our Christmas Eve/Christmas Mass schedule is Christmas Eve 7 PM and 8 a.m. Mass on Christmas; our New Year Day, Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God, Mass is at 9:30 a.m. Jan, 1; (Friday Morning). On Sunday, January 3 at 10:30 AM, we will have an Epiphany Celebration which includes pageantry, music, potluck and prayer. Please bring a dish to Pass. Regular Sunday Mass Schedule is Saturdays 4 p.m., Sundays 7:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m.  Regular Religious Education and Junior High Ministry will be Dec 13,  from 6-7:30. May your Advent season be a time of refreshment and your Christmas time be joy-filled. The church is located at 1 W. Maple, Sand Lake.

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Give more for less this holiday season

 

PHOTO credit: (c) jovannig - Fotolia.com

PHOTO credit: (c) jovannig – Fotolia.com

(StatePoint) The holidays are a great time to shower friends and family with wonderful gifts. As you check off your holiday shopping list, remember that even small gifts can add up quickly to cost a bundle.

With these helpful tips from the discount experts at Dollar General, you may be able to give more for less this holiday season.

Holiday Thank Yous

Little gifts for the kids’ teachers, the neighborhood mail carrier, your favorite hairdresser and office co-workers can add up to some big expenses.

Gift cards are a special way to show your year-round appreciation and you don’t have to spend much to make an impact. Consider giving gift cards for a popular restaurant, retail store or coffee spot. Adorn the gift card with a unique ornament or decoration to add some extra holiday flair.

Stocking Stuffers

After the large items are purchased, don’t forget the stocking stuffers. With nearly limitless possibilities, consider fun items like lip gloss, hand cream and travel-sized toiletries for those on the go. For kids, think about small toys, mini coloring sets and yummy holiday treats including candy canes and chocolates. Add in little everyday items like gloves or a pair of patterned fuzzy socks.

The stocking is a fun part of the holiday tradition that doesn’t have to drain your budget. A discount retailer like Dollar General has a wide variety of stocking stuffer essentials at great prices for every member of the family, including the family pet. In fact, many items are priced at $1 or less.

Gifts from the Heart

Sometimes the most meaningful gifts are the one you make. Fill a fun candy jar with holiday sweets like individually-wrapped mints and chocolates, and then finish it with a coordinating ribbon and gift tag. You can also give someone a stress-free supper with a homemade soup in a jar mix. Purchase canning jars and fill with soup ingredients like beans, pasta, spices and other delicious ingredients to make a tasty DIY gift. Decorate the jar with ribbon and use the gift tag to include cooking instructions on the back.

Finally, let the kids help by creating personalized holiday cards using colored paper, glitter and craft essentials for a unique, one-of-a-kind greeting. Use creativity and have fun with it!

Make this holiday memorable by giving meaningful gifts that won’t stress your budget.

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Shopping Safely Online

 

From the US Computer Emergency Readiness Team 

Why do online shoppers have to take special precautions? 

The Internet offers convenience not available from other shopping outlets. From the comfort of your home, you can search for items from multiple vendors, compare prices with a few mouse clicks, and make purchases without waiting in line. However, the Internet is also convenient for attackers, giving them multiple ways to access the personal and financial information of unsuspecting shoppers. Attackers who are able to obtain this information may use it for their own financial gain, either by making purchases themselves or by selling the information to someone else.

Online shopping has become a popular way to purchase items without the hassles of traffic and crowds. However, the Internet has unique risks, so it is important to take steps to protect yourself when shopping online.

How do attackers target online shoppers? 

There are three common ways that attackers can take advantage of online shoppers:

Creating fraudulent sites and email messages – Unlike traditional shopping, where you know that a store is actually the store it claims to be, attackers can create malicious websites or email messages that appear to be legitimate. Attackers may also misrepresent themselves as charities, especially after natural disasters or during holiday seasons. Attackers create these malicious sites and email messages to try to convince you to supply personal and financial information.

Intercepting insecure transactions – If a vendor does not use encryption, an attacker may be able to intercept your information as it is transmitted.

Targeting vulnerable computers – If you do not take steps to protect your computer from viruses or other malicious code, an attacker may be able to gain access to your computer and all of the information on it. It is also important for vendors to protect their computers to prevent attackers from accessing customer databases.

How can you protect yourself? 

Do business with reputable vendors – Before providing any personal or financial information, make sure that you are interacting with a reputable, established vendor. Some attackers may try to trick you by creating malicious websites that appear to be legitimate, so you should verify the legitimacy before supplying any information. Attackers may obtain a site certificate for a malicious website to appear more authentic, so review the certificate information, particularly the “issued to” information. Locate and note phone numbers and physical addresses of vendors in case there is a problem with your transaction or your bill.

Make sure your information is being encrypted – Many sites use secure sockets layer (SSL) to encrypt information. Indications that your information will be encrypted include a URL that begins with “https:” instead of “http:” and a padlock icon. If the padlock is closed, the information is encrypted. The location of the icon varies by browser; for example, it may be to the right of the address bar or at the bottom of the window. Some attackers try to trick users by adding a fake padlock icon, so make sure that the icon is in the appropriate location for your browser.

Be wary of emails requesting information – Attackers may attempt to gather information by sending emails requesting that you confirm purchase or account information. (See Avoiding Social Engineering and Phishing Attacks.) Legitimate businesses will not solicit this type of information through email. Do not provide sensitive information through email. If you receive an unsolicited email from a business, instead of clicking on the provided link, directly log on to the authentic website by typing the address yourself.

Use a credit card – There are laws to limit your liability for fraudulent credit card charges, but you may not have the same level of protection for your debit cards. Additionally, because a debit card draws money directly from your bank account, unauthorized charges could leave you with insufficient funds to pay other bills. You can minimize potential damage by using a single, low-limit credit card to making all of your online purchases. Also use a credit card when using a payment gateway such as PayPal, Google Wallet, or Apple Pay.

Check your shopping app settings – Look for apps that tell you what they do with your data and how they keep it secure. Keep in mind that there is no legal limit on your liability with money stored in a shopping app (or on a gift card). Unless otherwise stated under the terms of service, you are responsible for all charges made through your shopping app.

Check your statements – Keep a record of your purchases and copies of confirmation pages, and compare them to your bank statements. If there is a discrepancy, report it immediately.

Check privacy policies – Before providing personal or financial information, check the website’s privacy policy. Make sure you understand how your information will be stored and used.

For more information on this and other alerts and tips connected to cyber security, visit www.us-cert.gov, an official website of the Department of Homeland Security.

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