Handmade gifts add a personal touch, even if made by someone else

NEIGHBORS

November 28, 1994|By LYN BACKE

Once upon a time, I had the luxury of being able to have all my Christmas presents ready, many handmade, by Thanksgiving. I wanted to avoid all the commercialism of Christmas and what I deemed to be the forced festivity of the weeks leading up to the holiday.

Now I'm much busier, more stressed, with more assignments and commitments, and I eagerly anticipate the festivity of the weeks before Christmas.

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One of the big events is the 12th annual Tree of Lights ceremony, sponsored by the Auxiliary of Anne Arundel Medical Center and scheduled for 5 p.m. Thursday at AAMC's main entrance.

Tree of Lights has become a very effective fund-raiser across the country. One "buys," or sponsors a light on the tree in memory of a loved one, or in celebration of life, such as honoring a graduation, bar mitzvah, birth or anniversary. Some simply want to share the joy of the season in a nondenominational endeavor. In Annapolis, proceeds from the Tree of Life benefit AAMC.

The tree lighting will include a performance by the U.S. Naval Academy Brass Quintet. County elementary students also will read their winning essays on why they'd have a light on the tree.

After the lighting, festivities will continue at Loews Annapolis Hotel on West Street with complimentary hors d'oeuvres, a cash bar, cookies and carols. Decorated artificial wreaths, trees and other items will be on sale, many donated by local garden clubs, florists, interior designers and volunteers. The sale continues from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday.

Participants are asked to bring a wrapped gift for a child. For more information about the Tree of Lights or wreaths and trees, call the AAMC Auxiliary at 267-1249.

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Since I don't have the time to make a lot of my presents, I try even harder to make sure there's a personal element in my gifts. It doesn't have to be my own doing, but it needs to be right for the recipient, and it needs to have been handmade. It also needs to be affordable.

Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts offers a market for shoppers like me from Dec. 9 to Dec. 22 with its third annual All Hung Show.

It's an unjuried, noncompetitive show for local artists. The artists can show up to five works.

For more information, call Mike Purvis, director of visual arts, at 263-5544.

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The Annapolis and Anne Arundel County Conference and Visitors Bureau is proud of the town it celebrates, and shows why Saturday with the annual Holiday House and Yacht Tour. This year the homes of Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll, William Paca and Samuel Chase, Maryland's four signers of the Declaration of Independence, will be open.

The tour includes the governor's yacht "Independence," the Banneker-Douglas Museum and four bed-and-breakfast homes: the Green Street Inn, The Gatehouse, the William Page Inn and the College House Suites.

Tickets are $12 in advance, $15 on Saturday, and can be bought at the Visitor's Center, 26 West St. The William Paca House is not part of the tour, but is open for an extra $3.

For more information, call 280-0445.

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A drawing for George Daly's farm house-doll house will be held during the Shady Side Rural Heritage Society's 10th annual Christmas Brunch on Dec. 11.

Tickets for the raffle still are available and can be purchased by calling (301) 261-5234. Tickets for the brunch are $12 and can be purchased by calling 867-2866.

The first in a series of historic Shady Side Christmas ornaments also will be on sale, along with the 1995 South Anne Arundel County calendar. For information on purchasing these items, call 867-4554.

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There is an excellent chance that with the Thanksgiving dinner now past some of us have decided it's time to go on a diet. Anne Arundel Medical Center again comes to the rescue, this time with a two-hour class called "Healthy Vegetarian Cooking." The class will be held from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Monday.

Vegetarian cooking doesn't necessarily mean low calorie, but it can mean low fat, a major factor in losing weight. You can apply the principles of vegetarian cooking to all of your meals.

The course fee is $10, and includes recipes and taste testings. Register by mail as soon as possible. Enclose the $10 registration fee and mail it to Anne Arundel Health Education Center (AAHEC), 2001 Medical Parkway, Annapolis, 21401. Also include your Social Security number and daytime phone number.

For information and registration, call 224-5751.

What is your group's holiday event? If it's open to the public, give me a call ASAP at 626-0273. I write on Wednesday for the following Monday.

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