Steph's Pick - a Christmas List

Nov 21, 2008

Ready or not - that time of year is just around the corner! Like usual, I've already been asked by a few people what I want for Christmas. Generally I have such a hard time trying to think of things that I want for Christmas. However, this year, thanks to a suggestion by my friend Michelle, I've been keeping a Christmas list in my purse for the past few months. That way anytime I come across something that I want I add it to the ongoing list. It's great! Much less stress.
That's why I thought I'd add this tip as my "Steph's Pick" for the week. Anything to help the holidays be less stressful and more joyful!


Home from our cruise!

Nov 20, 2008

Well we returned safe and sound on Monday night from a great get-away weekend. As I said in my previous post, Jess and I have been talking about taking a vacation together for the past two years but just got around to doing it last weekend.
The weekend was filled with a ton of great memories - the best being the amount of rest and sleep that we got! It was unbelievable how exhausted both of us were. With an inside cabin room (no lights) you would have easily found us asleep at 9 pm each night!!!
We did have one stop - Ensenada, Mexico. Although we did get off the boat for a total of 45 or so minutes, the city itself wasn't much to write home about. The other days were spent poolside with a book in hand.
On Monday we were able to disembark around 8 am so we made arrangements to sit down at the Long Beach Starbucks while we waited for the LA traffic to die down. After waiting a couple hours we were off to UCLA to meet up with some old friends, Josh and Rochelle. While in Westwood we relaxed some more and enjoyed the last few hours of conversation before Rochelle and Jess dropped me off at LAX to fly home to Phoenix.
It really was an incredible weekend. Jess - thanks for taking time out of your crazy schedule to spend a weekend with me! You're the best!


a cruise...

Nov 13, 2008

We've always talked about it - but we're finally doing it! My dear friend, Jess, and I are leaving from Long Beach, CA tomorrow morning for a short 3-day "Girls Weekend" cruise. It is sure to be a great time!!! I'll be sure to post photos as soon as we're back. Bon Voyage!!!


Steph's Pick - Nutty Peanut Butter Caramel Bars

Nov 10, 2008

Add this one to your holiday baking file.... mouth-watering Nutty Peanut Butter Caramel Bars. Don't they look heavenly :)

8 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 egg
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups pecan halves
14 ounces unwrapped caramels
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
5 ounces milk chocolate chips
5 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375. In a large bowl, cream together butter, sugar, brown sugar, and peanut butter. Beat in egg until well combined.In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Pour into sugar mixture and beat until dough forms.Scoop out dough into a 15x10" baking pan and press it out to fill the pan. Scatter pecans evenly over dough. Bake for 10 to 20 minutes or until lightly browned around edges. Set on a wire rack.In a heavy small saucepan, add caramels and milk. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until smooth. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.Drizzle caramel mixture over pecans. Sprinkle with chocolate chips. Let cool completely and cut into bars

If any of you make this treat - comment below. I haven't had a chance to try it yet. :)

(Recipe by Desert Culinary and Photo by Hostess of the Mostess & Desert Culinary)


we're going to be an aunt and uncle!

Nov 3, 2008

I realize most of you know that Alan's brother, Nick and his wife, Abby are expecting in January. However, I thought I'd make the official "Flies Blend" blog announcment! Nick and Abby were in AZ this past weekend spending some time with us before the baby comes. I got a chance to take some maternity photos of the couple. These are just a few - but aren't they cute!!!
We can't wait to be an aunt and uncle. Nick and Abby - we couldn't be more excited for you two. You will be incredible parents.
(I'll post more photos of our weekend later this week)

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