Ho ho, and save dough

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Holiday headache? The Xtreme Teen Board's Holiday Survival Guide is here to allay holiday stress. We're covering tricky gift giving for friends and significant others today, and the survival guide will continue online at our Hot Topics blog with teen tips on everything you want to know this holiday season.

KEEP IT CHEAP


Buy en masse: Teen Board member Jena Berkhimer suggests buying packages of Christmas candy, then dividing the package between friends.


Shop around: Check sales prices and save a bundle. Teen Board member Shamari Sylvan says he's found deals on www.amazon.com.


Secret Santa: This is a great way to save money if you have a large group of friends. For Secret Santa, all participants draw names and set a dollar limit. You get a gift for the person whose name you draw. Oh, and keep whose name you've drawn a secret until the group reconvenes for gift-giving.


Alternative Secret Santa: Make a uniform gift, such as ornaments, for each other, like Teen Board member Michael Ryan did.


Personal touch: Making cookies, jewelry or art for friends can be meaningful and free, minus the time spent and materials.

COUPLED UP


The Teen Board members came up with some fail-proof holiday presents for your significant other:


For your girlfriend:


Jewelry is a classic: It doesn't have to be pricey, just her style.


Dress-up date: If your girlfriend loves to dress up, take her to a nice restaurant where she can don her favorite apparel.


Prince Charming: Even if you don't have a ton of dough to spend, a few female Teen Board members said they'd prefer a gift of an activity the two of you can enjoy together. Some romantic and affordable suggestions are going to see Lights of the South together or ice skating.


For your boyfriend:


Useful electronics: This subjective suggestion depends on what he's into, whether it's gaming or car repair.


Sports-related items: If it's sports, it's safe. One place to find a good selection of items if you strike out at local stores is www.eastbay.com.


Get creative: Personalized items or gifts related to inside jokes will be a hit, Teen Board guys said.

HOLIDAY BLOG


We'll continue with tips through Monday on Xtreme's Hot Topics blog. Read about DIY gifts; how to throw a holiday party; teen picks for video games and DVDs; what not to buy; and how to survive awkward situations this holiday season. Find the Hot Topics blog at chronicle.augusta.com/xtreme.


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