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Chaves County Extension to offer homemade gift ideas as Christmas showcase Nov. 7-8

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!


Woman sitting at sewing machine.
Debbi Smith sews a table runner, one of the projects attendees will learn how to create at '"It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas," hosted by New Mexico State University's Chaves County Cooperative Extension Service Nov. 7-8. (NMSU photo by Audry Olmsted)

Well, it might be a bit early to catch the holiday spirit, but if you want to make some homemade Christmas gifts for your loved ones, now is the time to start. New Mexico State University's Chaves County Cooperative Extension Service in Roswell is hosting a Christmas showcase where attendees will learn how to make a variety of unique goodies from holiday cookies to homemade bookmarks and fleece blankets.

Members of Extension Club will offer easy gift-giving ideas, Christmas décor, gifts from the kitchen and simple sewing projects at "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas" Nov. 7-8, at the Farm Bureau Building at the Eastern New Mexico State Fairgrounds.

"There will be some great, inexpensive ideas for Christmas at this showcase," said Shannon Wooton, Extension home economist. "These are great projects they can make in their own home and give as a gift that is homemade. It's going to be a great time by all who come."

At the showcase, stations will be set up where participants will learn how to make such homemade crafts as headbands, table runners, aprons, quilts, picture frames, Christmas tree pins, paper wreaths and simple gift packaging, along with easy-to-make food. Many of the gift ideas can be created using ingredients or scraps and materials you find around the house. Every 20 minutes, people will rotate to a different station until they have satisfied their Craft 101 needs.

The best part about this Christmas event, said Pat Peralta, with Extension Club, is that these ideas will not break the bank.

"People want to give gifts, but with the economy the way it is, we don't have a lot of money to spend on purchasing gifts," she said. "Making gifts at home that are cost efficient is very important to people this holiday season."

Along with learning crafts and recipes, attendees will also be able to see firsthand all that Chaves County's Extension Club has to offer.

"We want to educate the people in the community, reach out to them," said Pat Bullock, an Extension Club member. "We are a very well-kept secret. People don't know as much about Extension Club as we would like them to."

There is a $5 entrance fee to the Christmas showcase. With this fee, attendees will receive a booklet filled with recipes, patterns and directions to make all the crafts shown at the event. The booklet also includes information about food safety and how to stay organized during the holiday season.

Proceeds from "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas" will go toward three scholarships awarded each year to students attending a New Mexico college, as well as to the Books For Newborns program.

The crafty fun begins at 1:30 p.m. on Nov. 7 and 6 p.m. on Nov. 8. Refreshments will be served.
Anyone with questions about the showcase can contact Wooton at 575-622-3210.