Don't just dream it, live it!

Even in a pandemic, the holidays are worth celebrating. So, I've rounded up some delicious Christmas treats (like our no-bake, snow globe cheesecakes on the left), and New Year's cocktail ideas. I've also researched this year's top stories in Clermont. Yes, there was some good news amid the non-stop COVID-19 warnings.

As we celebrate our holiday traditions, and bid farewell to 2020, all of us at Travis Realty Group send you our sincerest wishes for a joy-filled, healthy 2021!
Happy Holidays,
Diane Travis, Owner and Broker
Since most of us won't be traveling, why not pull out all the stops for some Christmas cuisine that will rival any Food Network star!

ABOVE: Holiday-themed biscotti is easy and will brighten up your breakfast table or coffee time. Purchase your favorite biscotti. The frosting dip can either be powdered sugar glaze (powdered sugar and a little milk) or white chocolate (melted in a metal bowl over some simmering water). Dip the ends and let them cool a little, then sprinkle with red and green sugar crystals.

TOP LEFT: Talk about showstoppers! These no-bake, snow globe cheesecakes are as adorable as they are delicious. This one takes time, and it involves some cooking equipment you may not have on hand, such as the half-sphere mold (you can get it on Amazon or at Walmart). RECIPE

BOTTOM LEFT: Here's an option if you are turkeyed out. Take a can of crescent rolls. Peel them apart and cut each into two, lengthwise triangles. Arrange them into a candy cane shape; pour pizza sauce over the larger part; add pepperoni if you wish and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Fold over the triangle tip and bake at 375 degrees till the crust is golden.


Looking for some social-distancing ways to enjoy the holidays in Clermont that still get you in the spirit of the season?

The City has done its innovative best to create those kinds of opportunities. You can take a family photo at the giant, decorated tree at City Hall. You can walk or bike (with face masks) at Victory Pointe (right) to see the Festival of Trees, all decorated with different themes.
While you're there, mail a letter to Santa!
There are lots of light displays to enjoy on a ride around the city. All of downtown is twinkling, and there are the traditional animated light exhibits circling Center Lake. Just riding through the neighborhoods makes for a fun night out.
And when you do, be sure to drive by 113 Pacific Avenue. That house, pictured below, was chosen by the "Orlando Sentinel" as one of the top residential Christmas displays in Central Florida!
Near lakes & trails
Summit Greens

The year started off on such a high note with the opening of the new boat ramp on Jan. 10. Lake Felter got new playground equipment, and the city manager was touting Clermont's booming economy. But before long, the devastating news of a new, novel mysterious coronavirus was rapidly changing life in America and in Clermont.
By mid-March, the City had cancelled all events and shut down city facilities, declaring a state of emergency. A few weeks later, the seriousness of the pandemic became very real with the death of one of Clermont's police officers due to COVID-19.
It was a tough year for everyone, especially small business owners and Clermont would lose other citizens to the virus.
But there were some bright lights in this otherwise dark year. Here are a few local headlines:
  • The Clermont Fire Department earned the highest rating possible, reducing resident and business owners' insurance rates.
  • Diane Travis, owner of Travis Realty Group and a national and world champion duathlete, was named a finalist in the national Women's Great Grand Masters Duathlete of the Year.
  • Two new walking trails opened at the Arts and Recreation Center.
  • The Elks Lodge's lighted Christmas boat parade raised $2,000 to benefit South Lake families in need.
  • Allison Fogarty, a 29-year-old Clermont resident with Down Syndrome, became a national star with her Doggy Delights by Allison dog treats. She ended up in national magazines and was invited to be on "The Rachael Ray" show (see below). The "Orlando Business Journal" named her one of its 40 Under 40 stars of Central Florida up-and-coming business leaders.
  • Lots of new businesses called Clermont home, including: Ellie Lou's Brews and BBQ, Montrose St. Market, Wiseman's Gourmet Popcorn, Bagel Bros Cafe, Smoothie King & Foxtail Coffee Co.

Looking for original takes on a champagne toast at midnight on New Year's Eve? Here are two fresh ideas pictured above:
  1. Champagne Jello Shots RECIPE.
  2. Hibiscus Champagne RECIPE (Hibiscus is the City of Clermont's official flower!)

If you want to give your home a fresh start in the new year, here are three trends that designers predict will be popular in 2021:
  • Cottagecore: A comfortable, idealized aesthetic of rural life.
  • Earthy, grounded colors: Many of the major paint makers are moving to earthy tones for 2021. Examples: Brave Ground and Urbane Bronze. Look for palettes that include rusts, warm greens, deep reds and warm browns.
  • Houseplants: After losing their place in the home during the 1990s, houseplants are making a comeback.