Five Holiday Recipes To Try

Five Holiday Recipes To Try

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The weather has turned cold and there is some snow on the ground. It's time to relax at home and maybe bake a couple of cookies. Here are some of my favorite Pinterest recipes to make this holiday seasons for your family and friends. None of these recipes are mine , credit goes to the owners.


1. Peppermint Hot Chocolate Brownie Cookies

Ingredients

Refrigerated

  • 2 Eggs

Baking & Spices

  • 1 1/2 cups All purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp Baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups Brown sugar, light packed
  • 1/3 cup Cocoa powder, dark
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 cup Semi sweet or dark chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup Shortening
  • 1 tsp Vanilla

Desserts

  • 1 cup Peppermint crunch baking chips *see note

Liquids

  • 1 tbsp Water

2. Soft Baked Gingersnap Cookies

Ingredients

Produce

  • 2 tsp Ginger, ground

Refrigerated

  • 1 Egg, large

Condiments

  • 1/4 cup Molasses

Baking & Spices

  • 1 3/4 cup All-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp Baking soda
  • 1/2 cup Brown sugar
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon, ground
  • 1/8 tsp Cloves, ground
  • 1/4 cup Granulated sugar
  • 1/8 tsp Nutmeg, ground
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract

Dairy

  • 1/2 cup Butter, unsalted

3. Amazing Christmas Crack


Ingredients

Baking & Spices

  • 1 cup Brown sugar, dark
  • 2 cups Dark chocolate morsels

Nuts & Seeds

  • 3/4 cup Pecans, toasted

Snacks

  • 4 oz Saltine crackers

Dairy

  • 1 cup Butter

4. Santa Hat Cheesecake Bites


Ingredients

Refrigerated

  • 2 Eggs, large

Baking & Spices

  • 3/8 cup Granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp Powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1 1/3 cups White chocolate chips

Snacks

  • 18 Oreos finely crushed to about 1 3/4 cups

Dairy

  • 2 1/2 tbsp Butter
  • 2 (8 oz) pkg Cream cheese
  • 3/4 cup Heavy cream

Other

  • 25 Fairly small, fresh strawberries (or more if cutting more squares)

5. Frozen Hot Chocolate

Condiments

  • 4 tbsp Chocolate sauce

Baking & Spices

  • 2 tbsp Chocolate shavings
  • 4 sachets Hot chocolate cocoa powder
  • 1 Whipped cream

Dairy

  • 2 cups Milk

Frozen

  • 3 cups Ice
Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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I Went To "The Bachelor" Auditions

And here's why you won’t be seeing me on TV.
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It’s finally time to admit my guilty pleasure: I have always been a huge fan of The Bachelor.

I can readily admit that I’ve been a part of Bachelor fantasy leagues, watch parties, solo watching — you name it, I’ve gone the whole nine yards. While I will admit that the show can be incredibly trashy at times, something about it makes me want to watch it that much more. So when I found out that The Bachelor was holding auditions in Houston, I had to investigate.

While I never had the intention of actually auditioning, there was no way I would miss an opportunity to spend some time people watching and check out the filming location of one of my favorite TV shows.

The casting location of The Bachelor, The Downtown Aquarium in Houston, was less than two blocks away from my office. I assumed that I would easily be able to spot the audition line, secretly hoping that the endless line of people would beg the question: what fish could draw THAT big of a crowd?

As I trekked around the tanks full of aquatic creatures in my bright pink dress and heels (feeling somewhat silly for being in such nice clothes in an aquarium and being really proud of myself for somewhat looking the part), I realized that these auditions would be a lot harder to find than I thought.

Finally, I followed the scent of hairspray leading me up the elevator to the third floor of the aquarium.

The doors slid open. I found myself at the end of a large line of 20-something-year-old men and women and I could feel all eyes on me, their next competitor. I watched as one woman pulled out her travel sized hair curler, someone practiced answering interview questions with a companion, and a man (who was definitely a little too old to be the next bachelor) trying out his own pick-up lines on some of the women standing next to him.

I walked to the end of the line (trying to maintain my nonchalant attitude — I don’t want to find love on a TV show). As I looked around, I realized that one woman had not taken her eyes off of me. She batted her fake eyelashes and looked at her friend, mumbling something about the *grumble mumble* “girl in the pink dress.”

I felt a wave of insecurity as I looked down at my body, immediately beginning to recognize the minor flaws in my appearance.

The string hanging off my dress, the bruise on my ankle, the smudge of mascara I was sure I had on the left corner of my eye. I could feel myself begin to sweat. These women were all so gorgeous. Everyone’s hair was perfectly in place, their eyeliner was done flawlessly, and most of them looked like they had just walked off the runway. Obviously, I stuck out like a sore thumb.

I walked over to the couches and sat down. For someone who for the most part spent most of the two hours each Monday night mocking the cast, I was shocked by how much pressure and tension I felt in the room.

A cop, stationed outside the audition room, looked over at me. After a brief explanation that I was just there to watch, he smiled and offered me a tour around the audition space. I watched the lines of beautiful people walk in and out of the space, realizing that each and every one of these contestants to-be was fixated on their own flaws rather than actually worrying about “love.”

Being with all these people, I can see why it’s so easy to get sucked into the fantasy. Reality TV sells because it’s different than real life. And really, what girl wouldn’t like a rose?

Why was I so intimidated by these people? Reality TV is actually the biggest oxymoron. In real life, one person doesn’t get to call all the shots. Every night isn’t going to be in a helicopter looking over the south of France. A real relationship depends on more than the first impression.

The best part of being in a relationship is the reality. The best part about yourself isn’t your high heels. It’s not the perfect dress or the great pick-up lines. It’s being with the person that you can be real with. While I will always be a fan of The Bachelor franchise, this was a nice dose of reality. I think I’ll stick to my cheap sushi dates and getting caught in the rain.

But for anyone who wants to be on The Bachelor, let me just tell you: Your mom was right. There really are a lot of fish in the sea. Or at least at the aquarium.

Cover Image Credit: The Cut

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I'm Keeping My Christmas Tree Up All Winter And There's Nothing You Can Do About It

It's the WINTER Season... ;-)

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I think that my tree would not be considered Christmas-y if the ornaments are taken off and the lights are kept on. I think to just looks wintry. I am also keeping up decorations that say "let it snow", and I am keeping up any snowman without holly berries or presents in their hands.

The tree looks wintry in my opinion. It looks pretty with the lights and brings the room together. It gives off a warm ambiance, unlike that of fluorescent lighting.

I've taken all ornaments off except for gold snowflakes and I've left the silver tinsel garland on as well as the lights. It looks wintry to me still. I will probably be taking the whole tree down by the end of this month to prepare for Valentine's Day decorating. (Yes, I pretty much decorate my apartment for every holiday—sue me).

There's nothing like coming downstairs and seeing those lights sparkling.

Or coming inside from a dreary, rainy day outside and seeing them light up the room in a calm, warm, and comforting glow.

Or having a bad day, looking up, and seeing them shine.

It sort of makes me upset when I come downstairs and see that someone has unplugged them, to be honest.

I guess they don't see it as I do.

Pretty, twinkling lights forever!

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