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Welcome to the Sonoma County Gazette ARCHIVE of PAST EDITIONS. Our NEW WEBSITE is up and running, so GazExtra is serving as your path to archived articles. Thanks for being part of our Sonoma County community...stay in touch...e-mail me - VESTA

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Sebastopol Community Column - December 2010

Holiday Giving
By Sarah Gurney
Gift giving is going to be different this holiday season. People have less money to spend and people seem to want less. I have some suggestions for holiday shoppers that will simplify the rituals of gift exchange.

Look for smaller items. Rather than the big toy set – with roadways, buildings, and vehicles – find a single car and imbue it with memories of playing together.

Consider how long-lasting a gift might be. Some folks enjoy necessities or consumables – gifts that are experienced and used and don’t gather dust on the shelf – artisan bread or soap or home-made granola. Or search for a gift that is durable and long-lasting…a 10-20-or-30-year lifespan? Family photos in a special frame? A wool muffler?

Purchases don’t have to be new items.
Visit our many “thrift” stores and find your gift in another person’s give-aways - a warm jacket, a flower vase, work shirts, a kitchen appliance. Reuse, recycle, restore.

If you have time and can plan ahead, you could make your gifts by hand. Creativity and originality make these gifts life-time treasures. A potholder, a trivet made from used wine corks, a wand of lavender?

Time itself is a gift. Seek out friends and enjoy a potluck meal or play [ukulele] music together. Chat with an elder, holding hands.

Volunteer yourself in service to an organization whose goals matter to you. The opportunities are boundless – from practical tasks, like stocking food pantry shelves or packing delivery boxes to singing in patient-care facilities.

Some of us may be short on free time and choose to give money to our favorite non-profit organizations that provide vital services. No gift is too small; each contribution adds support.

Keep in mind that locally produced purchases from a locally owned business or contributions to a local organization support a person – not a corporation – who could be a friend, a neighbor, or a family trying to get through these difficult times. Give a gift to your community.

Millers Candy Closes
By Robert Bialkin
It is with a heavy heart that Millers Candy Emporium in Sebastopol has now closed. Millers was a wonderland of candy, sweets, and toys for anyone young at heart. Millers wasn’t just a candy store, but a place to have fantastic birthdays or spend the afternoon roaming through miles of classic or modern candies. This place was magical. The nastalgic feel was certainly one of Millers’ defining features.

At first it appeared that holiday shoppers and stocking-stuffers in Sebastopol would have to settle for Rite Aid to assist Santa in providing children with candy for stockings and ginger bread house construction materials. However, when one door closes another one opens. Upon my return home from a trip I noticed the store was closing. I immediately started working with Millers to open another candy store and ensure Sebastopol was not without a sweet shop this holiday season.

I am happy to announce that we have expanded Honeymoon Frozen Yogurt and opened a delightful candy store right next door to the yogurt shop at 7106 Bodega Avenue in Sebastopol. We will be working with Millers to ensure the shop continues to carry some of the locals’ favorite candies.

We will be stocking the shop based on your requests and suggestions in order to create a store that truly reflects the tastes of Sebastopol. Please stop by or call (707) 829-YUMM. We realize we can never be as awesome and grand as Miller’s, but what we lack in size we hope to make up for in sweets!

Honeymoon Sweet Shop will continue to serve Millers’ incredible homemade fudge, which can also be purchased online at if you still have a fudge coupon. And don’t worry if you have an unused Miller’s gift certificate, as they would be happy to redeem it. Simply call (707) 829-9040.

The Miller’s team would like everyone to know that it was a great honor to serve the patrons of Sebastopol. They thank you for your letters of support, and will miss you all!