SmartphonesBy Victoria Detmering

There’s a chill in the air and plumes of smoke rising over the rooftops. As you anxiously await the Enchanted Mountains to glisten from the first winter snow, the talk is centered on recipes, old and new, for our holiday tables.

It’s that time of year when we are running around like crazy trying to prepare our favorite holiday recipes, competing for the best-decorated house on the block, buying presents for loved ones and still maintaining the daily routine of work and school.

Thanksgiving has passed and the real countdown to the holidays begins now. For many of you, baking, cooking decorating, shopping, planning, etc. may not be your forte, but you still feel inclined to do such things to maintain your holiday spirit.

If you need a bit of help baking or cooking, finding the best gift for your loved one and being proud of the fact that your house looks like a winter wonderland, then read on.

Our charming village will be celebrating the holidays this weekend with Christmas in Ellicottville. For those of you that are unfamiliar, it’s a weekend long event filled with a variety of holiday activities and shops filled to the brim with great gifts.

If you could use a bit more organizing help, especially during the holidays, The Christmas List cell phone app could do the trick. It’s is only $1.99 and available for iOS and Android phones. It’s a simple tool you can use to easily organize your shopping lists so you will never forget that one special gift or your aunt’s favorite appetizer again. You can sync lists through your email, create budgets for each person you are getting a gift for, track gifts, add your favorite stores, countdown the shopping days until Christmas and more!

Have trouble decorating for the holiday season? Want to learn some new tricks to spruce up your holiday look? Then Show Me Decorating is for you. It costs $2.99 and available for iOS users only. One of the great things about this app is that you can watch how-to videos of different ways to design your Christmas tree or make a holiday craft such as a snow globe. This app is great to use with your kids by providing innovative ideas for crafts.

If you don’t feel like paying for an app and/or do not have an Apple product, download the popular app Pinterest. This is a free app and available for iOS, Android and Windows. Pinterest has thousands of different decorating ideas and holiday-themed recipes. What are you waiting for?

For stress-free holiday shopping, visit Ellicottville this weekend and enjoy the Christmas in Ellicottville event. Shop and support Ellicottville’s merchants and restaurants. A stroll through town will soon end with bags of great gifts — snowboards, wines, gourmet gifts, toys, ski gear, boots, resort wear, skin care products, original art and more.