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Cyber Countdown to Christmas Continues

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RALEIGH — There's still time to buy those chestnuts toroast on an open fire, and to write the last few holiday cards beforeDecember 25 arrives. And with the kids home from school, you might liketo schedule some projects to keep them busy.

Keep them deliciously busy with some special baking projects. Use yourfamily's treasured recipes, of course, or try some new ones, courtesy ofthe Web. Go to Epicurious.com to find a wealth ofrecipes courtesy of Gourmet and Bon Appetit magazines. Check out thecolorful Christmas tree "decorated" in goodies. Click on one to find itsrecipe.

If you have both architectural and baking skills, try making agingerbread house.

A related site also provides Hanukkahrecipes. More holiday recipes can be found at Southern Living's site.

If you love the holiday's treats, but don't love the calories, visitRecipe Remakesonthe WRAL-TV5 Health Team OnLine site.

To search for recipes for every holiday, all year long, and for justaboutevery other cooking and baking need, go to the largeKitchen Linksite.

For adults on your gift list or on your party invitation list, champagnetips should keep the celebration popping.

If your home still needs a holiday touch, visit a site with festive decoratingtips.

Cyberspace can help withreallylast-minute card-sending.VisittheWRAL-TV5 OnLine Card Shopand choosefrom Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and New Year's greetings.

The Web may embellish holidays, but Christmas, Kwanzaa and Hanukkahare still real-life events. For some non-cyberspace activities, make adelivery of non-perishables to the food bank in your area, or to a rescuemission or church. Let the children help you choose what goes in the bagand take part in the delivery. If your household has teen-age orcollege-age children, they can volunteer with you at a food kitchen overthe holidays to help prepare and serve, so that the regular staff can havetime off.

Don't forget our animal friends. Call your local humane society oranimal shelter, both to learn their holiday hours and to ask what they can use in the way of food or supplies. Then, armed with their ideas, stop by the pet food aisle of your local supermarket, and make the nextstop a delivery for the animals.

In your own backyard, literally, you can feed the birds or squirrels.A cute painted feeder and seed make a good gift package for youngchildren, who always seem to be fascinated by animals of any kind.

Then, as the hours wind down, and the kids get more wound up, the Webcan help once more. Keep them busy tracking Santa's arrival. Jump on theInternet and contact the National Santa TrackingHeadquarters on Florida's Space Coast.It will give Santa's ETA at your town.

Happy holidays!

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