Mineral Wells Index, Mineral Wells, TX

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November 29, 2012

20 holiday gifts under $50

Shopping for gifts can often feel like a chore, especially in the time-crunched waning weeks of the year. We're here to help with 20 finds under $50, at least one of which will please the finicky friend, the oddball brother-in-law, the favorite hostess and the they-have-everything people on your list. Gift away, gift givers.

1. Beverage dispenser. Help party hosts serve up a big batch of holiday cheer or get them ready for hydrating next summer's barbecue with this seven-quart glass vessel. The quirky cork stopper and beaker shape let guests know they're in for a good time. $49.95. www.cb2.com.

2. Calendar. Artist Anne Lewis captures iconic D.C. sights by photographing them around town and then painting with oils. A 2013 calendar of her images, including the Lincoln Memorial at night, the White House in winter and pandas at the National Zoo, is affordable art. Frame each month in a grid for longer-lasting local flavor. $29. www.artbyannelewis.com.

3. Sunset throws. An ombre effect gives a comfy throw a trendy kick. Perfect for a new college grad or your chic friend. The 44-inch-by-56-inch heart-warmer is available in a variety of colors, including gray, teal, goldenrod, light blue and purple. $49. www.westelm.com.

4. Watering cans. Landscape designer or apartment gardener: What nature lover wouldn't love a retro, white gardening can? Available in two sizes: 2.2 liter and 7 liter. $16-$29. www.westelm.com.

5. Travel tea mug. Keep that commuter calm with a sleek, glass travel mug. The double-paneled glass conserves water temperature, while an infuser holds steeping tea. Include non-caffeinated herbal options with your gift for extra de-stressing energy. $24.50. www.davidstea.com.

6. Popcorn maker. Fun for winter movie nights at home with kids. The automated stirring rod keeps kernels from burning and can also roast nuts. $48. www.nordstrom.com.

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      The company reported this week that sales of its sleek, pricey tablet were down 19 percent from last quarter and 9 percent year-over-year. CEO Tim Cook tried to reassure investors that Apple's new partnership with IBM to sell its devices to IBM's corporate customers will help make iPads ubiquitous in the workplace. "This isn't something that worries us," he said of the iPad sales decline. But the numbers are disappointing no matter how you spin them.

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