- Happy Holidays
- Tree Lighting Ceremonies & Parades
- Did You Know?
- Local News
- Ski Lake Tahoe
- Recipe of the Month
- Wine of the Month
- Real Estate News
- Fixer Upper Season 4!
It's the most wonderful time of the year....
I love all the beautiful decorations, the music, the movies and the cookies of course! Most of all, I love the time with my family. The kids are so joyful and excited. They make everything so much fun. As we close out 2016, I want to thank all of you for being a part of our lives. We wish you a happy and healthy New Year!
Tree Lighting Ceremonies & Parades
Starbucks: There are two new Starbucks locations opening in the Concord and Walnut Creek area!
- There is a Drive-Thru Starbucks that has been under construction at the corner of Treat Blvd and Clayton Rd. It is NOW OPEN!
- There is a new Starbucks (NOW OPEN) in The Orchards Shopping Center at the corner of Oak Grove Rd. and Ygnacio Valley Rd.
Total Wine & More has opened in Pleasant Hill by Best Buy and Buy Buy Baby (former Office Depot location). They have great pricing on wines! Check it out!
Cash & Carry has now opened in Concord on Monument Blvd. (former Orchard Supply Hardware location) It has amazing prices on tri-tip. Best deals around!!
Salted Caramel Molasses Cookies
Making cookies at Christmas time is so much fun! I know eating raw cookie dough and straight icing is unhealthy, but it's the holiday season. That is the perfect excuse right ;)
I was looking up new recipes and when I saw this picture, my mouth started watering. So yummy! Try this and you will be a hit at your next cookie exchange.
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/3 cup molasses
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- About 20 Salted Caramel Chocolate Candies (such as Dove), unwrapped (or use any caramel candy, like a Rolo)
- **Note: this dough requires chill time!**
- Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
- Cream butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add molasses and mix until mixture is smooth. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until combined. Mix in baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and flour. Mix until a smooth dough forms. The dough will be very soft. Chill dough for 30-45 minutes, or until you can handle it without it sticking too much to your hands.
- Scoop 2 tablespoon balls of dough. Place a candy in the center and wrap the dough over it, rolling between your hands to form a ball. Make sure the candy is not showing. (Alternately, you could scoop two 1-tablespoon sized balls of dough, sandwich the candy, and roll into a ball. Do whichever method you prefer.) Place cookie dough balls on prepared cookie sheet. You don’t need to space them out at this point, they’re getting chilled again.
- Chill dough for at least 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a second cookie sheet with parchment or a silicone baking mat. Split cookie dough balls evenly between the cookie sheets. These will spread, so I only put two per line. Place any leftover dough balls back in the refrigerator to chill until you’re ready to bake them.
- Bake cookies for 11-14 minutes, until they are no longer glossy in the center and the bottoms are just getting golden brown. I like to err on the side of underdone cookies, but that’s preference. Bake them towards the longer side if you like your cookies baked more.
- Cool completely before removing from cookie sheets. Store in an airtight container for up to 4 days or freeze for up to 2 months.
Credit: Crazy for Crust
I was given a bottle of Ghost Pines 2014 Zinfandel as a present for hosting. When my husband and I opened the bottle, we loved it. It's a little smokey, but not too heavy. It is a great wine to have with dinner...and from what we've seen, a great bottle for the price!
We liked the wine so much that we brought a bottle to that same friend as a gift for Thanksgiving. While we thought we were showing him how much we loved it, we hadn't thought about how else it might be interpreted...He thought it was a re-gift! It made for a good laugh, which we all enjoyed over a glass from the new bottle. Another Thanksgiving memory in the books :)
Photo Credit: http://www.ghostpines.com/
On Houzz they had the most beautiful image of a country home in New York State surrounded by beautiful green and white plants and flowers. The associated article went into great detail of how the white and green color scheme was a timeless option for the garden. All I can say is that I am drawn to the classic feel.
I am so excited for Fixer Upper Season 4! I love that show. The premier is Tuesday November 29th at 9pm on HGTV. It is on every Tuesday. The houses they renovate are so amazing and I love her decorating style. They have committed to not doing projects outside of Waco, TX, but I really wish they would come do my house :) Check out the new season. It is sure to include many references to Shiplap! :)