Dear Sun Spots: You always provide so much information on so many subjects. I moved back to Maine a few months ago. I would like to buy some Red Hat clothing for some friends. I have not found any place in the L/A area that sells these items. I would appreciate any information from you or your readers. Thanks for your kind efforts. – No Name, Auburn.

Sun Spots had the pleasure of chatting with Clem Clements, who sells a variety of Red Hat apparel here in Lewiston. You can reach him via e-mail at [email protected] Clements also has a store on eBay where you can view some of his work. He decorates shirts, shirts sets, dresses, cardigan sets and many other items of clothing. He no longer has a large inventory of T-shirts but does have some on hand. He also displays his items at festivals and crafts shows. Call Clem at 784-7748. Perhaps readers will offer some other sources, as well.

Dear Sun Spots: Anyone in the Lewiston/Auburn area wanting to help a family for Christmas, please contact me.

The family I’m speaking of has two little boys, ages 10 and 11, and two little girls, ages 4 and 6. The boys are into X-Box, Gamecube, PS2, etc., and would love to get them as well as other gifts for Christmas. The girls are into dolls, Disney movies and other typical girl stuff. If you would like to contribute, please feel free to call me for more information at 795-9097. – Helping Santa, Lewiston.

Sun Spots would encourage you and others seeking assistance during the holidays to consider contacting the following, along with your local church or food bank:

The Salvation Army at their Lewiston chapter. Also ask them about the Toys for Tots program, 783-0801. The Bruce Roberts Toy Fund, which assists families in York Cumberland, Knox, Lincoln and Sagadahoc counties can be contacted at P.O. Box 7310, Portland, ME 04112 or via e-mail at [email protected] or phone at 791-6672. If you have any questions, contact project director Kathleen Meade at 791-6672.

In addition, please don’t forget that Christmas is not all about consumerism. Think about creating and sharing some simple, inexpensive holiday traditions. Check out local calendar listings for free holiday events. Make you own events by cutting your own tree, baking some inexpensive cookies or making decorations from recycled materials you have on hand. Check out the Internet for patterns, recipes and more. You’ll be surprised which memories your children will remember most. The time with family creating memories tends to outlast the latest toy.

Dear Sun Spots: Happy Holidays! Thank you once again for the great service you provide to our community. Thanks to you, we have enlisted many volunteers over the past few years. We at Cote Brothers would like to thank all of you who donated to “Mittens for Kids.” We delivered more than 300 pairs of knitted and sewn mittens, scarves and hats to “Coats and Toys for Kids.” It was heart arming to see how much love and caring went into the making of these mittens. Thanks to your generosity, those who are less fortunate will be warmer this winter.

In Saturday’s column, a reader was interested in donating mittens. I would like to assure readers that the mittens go to the Salvation Army, where they are sent to those in need here in Maine. We invite anyone interested in making mittens to drop them off at our store at 730 Center St., Auburn Plaza (next to Joann’s Fabrics). We have fleece and patterns available for those of you who would like to make some. For those of you who have spare fleece, we are running low and could use more.

In January, we invite sewers, knitters, quilters and any other crafters to join us in “Crafting for Charity.” We will meet in our store monthly on a Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. We have added some other great causes such as “Scarves for Vets” and “Home of the Brave” in support of our servicemen and women and their families. We also have patterns available to sew turbans for cancer patients at CMMC. If you are unable to come to our store but would like to sew at home, we would be happy to provide you with the projects. Please call 782-5922 for more information. – Lisa Cote-Blake, Auburn.

• Readers trying to contact Sun Spots writer who has a monkey (Thursday column) to give away should call 783-3935. Sun Spots reported an incorrect number.

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name (we won’t use it if you ask us not to). Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be posted at in the Advice section under Opinion on the left-hand corner of your computer screen. In addition, you can e-mail your inquiries to [email protected]

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