If you can’t control your almond butter, you can’t expect to control your life.

Bill Watterson (edit)

I love peanut butter and one thing I love more is my new favorite thing- almond butter. I checked out the Capital Region Home Show a month or so ago and came across this great local product, Nut-Zez. I got to try a bunch of their flavors and immediately fell in love with cinnamon raisin. Nut-Zez 1Out of Cohoes, NY, founder Amanda Zezima came up with a product based on her nutrition background that isn’t only good for you but delicious!

Both peanut butter and almond butter are good for you in moderation, but if you haven’t tried almond butter, grab some Nut-zez and a spoon because you’re missing out! I bought a container from the Niskayuna Co-Op (around $15) and started using it on everything. I had cinnamon raisin almond butter spread on rice cakes Nut-Zez 2with blueberries, cinnamon raisin almond butter on toast- pretty much anything you can use peanut butter for, try it with almond butter. I decided to try something different with the last cup of almond butter I had and I went with one of my favorite things, cookies! (Recipe via MeaningfulEats.com)

Flourless Oatmeal Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies 

INGREDIENTS

–          2/3 cup rolled oats

–          1 tsp baking soda

–          ¾ tsp salt

–          1 tsp cinnamon

–          1 cup Nut-Zez Almond Butter (I used cinnamon raisin)

–          2/3 cup dark brown sugar

–          2 large eggs

–          2 tsp vanilla extract

–          2/3 cup dark chocolate chips

 

INSTRUCTIONS

1.      Preheat the oven to 350F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

2.      In a medium bowl, combine the oats, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Stir to combine.

3.      In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the almond butter, brown sugar, eggs, and vanilla until smooth, about 2 minutes.

4.      With the mixer on low, slowly add the oat mixture. Mix until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips. The dough will be very sticky!

5.      Scoop 2 tablespoon rounds of dough onto the prepared cookie sheets. Bake each batch for 9-11 minutes. Cool 2 minutes before removing from the cookie sheet. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

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Lake George Winter Carnival Final Weekend

I LOVE the Winter Carnival. The snow doesn’t bother me in December because I’m looking forward to Christmas and my birthday. Then, we get caught up in New Years Eve and New Years plans. Then, prepping for the Super Bowl and then suddenly we find ourselves stuck in the middle of nothing with the snow still coming. That’s what the Lake George Winter Carnival is for. It takes you out of those Winter doldrums to find the fun in snow again and here’s what’s going on this weekend.

4×4 TRUCK RACES (SAT/SUN)

ICE DIVING DEMONSTRATION (SAT/SUN)

TOAST MARSHMALLOWS ON THE BEACH (SAT) 4:00PM

CHICKEN WING COOK-OFF (SAT) 12:00PM

DOGSLED RACES (SAT) $20

RAFFLE DRAWING (SUN) 3:30PM

:::::EVERY WEEKEND:::::

FIREWORKS (SAT) 6:00PM

HELICOPTER RIDES (W/ A FEE)

LG DOG’S GOT TALENT SHOW (2:30P)

WISH LANTERN FLY OFF (SAT) 5:30PM

CHILDREN’S ACTIVITIES (11A-2P) @ KING NEPTUNES

ATV WAGON RIDES FOR KIDS ($2)

PONY RIDES ($5) IN THE PARK

Lake George Winter Carnival Weekend Three

I LOVE the Winter Carnival. The snow doesn’t bother me in December because I’m looking forward to Christmas and my birthday. Then, we get caught up in New Years Eve and New Years plans. Then, prepping for the Super Bowl and then suddenly we find ourselves stuck in the middle of nothing with the snow still coming. That’s what the Lake George Winter Carnival is for. It takes you out of those Winter doldrums to find the fun in snow again and here’s what’s going on this weekend.

CAR RACES (SAT/SUN)

ATV SCAVENGER HUNT (SAT)

TOAST MARSHMALLOWS ON THE BEACH (SAT) 4:00PM *FIREWORKS*

ICE DIVING DEMONSTRATION (SAT/SUN)

CHOWDER COOK-OFF (SAT) 12:00PM- SHEPARD PARK

BREEZY HILL ALPACA FARM (SAT/SUN)

LOCAL RESTAURANT COMPETITION (SUN) 1:00PM

:::::EVERY WEEKEND:::::

FIREWORKS (SAT) 6:00PM

HELICOPTER RIDES (W/ A FEE)

LG DOG’S GOT TALENT SHOW (2:30P)

WISH LANTERN FLY OFF (SAT) 5:30PM

CHILDREN’S ACTIVITIES (11A-2P) @ KING NEPTUNES

ATV WAGON RIDES FOR KIDS ($2)

PONY RIDES ($5) IN THE PARK

Lake George Winter Carnival Weekend Two

I LOVE the Winter Carnival. The snow doesn’t bother me in December because I’m looking forward to Christmas and my birthday. Then, we get caught up in New Years Eve and New Years plans. Then, prepping for the Super Bowl and then suddenly we find ourselves stuck in the middle of nothing with the snow still coming. That’s what the Lake George Winter Carnival is for. It takes you out of those Winter doldrums to find the fun in snow again and here’s what’s going on this weekend.

NY STATE AMA SANCTIONED MOTORCYCLE AND ATV ICE RACE (SAT/SUN)

ATV SCAVENGER HUNT (SAT)

BBQ COOK-OFF (SAT) 12:00PM- SHEPARD PARK

TOAST MARSHMALLOWS ON BEACH (SAT) 4:00PM *FIREWORKS*

VISIT FROM ADIRONDACK FLAMES (SAT/SUN)

ICE DIVING DEMONSTRATIONS (SAT/SUN)

BREEZY HILL ALPACA FARM (SAT/SUN)- SHEPARD PARK

DOGSLED RIDES (SAT/SUN) $20

GIANT KITE FLYING ON THE ICE (SAT)

:::::EVERY WEEKEND:::::

FIREWORKS (SAT) 6:00PM

HELICOPTER RIDES (W/ A FEE)

LG DOG’S GOT TALENT SHOW (2:30P)

WISH LANTERN FLY OFF (SAT) 5:30PM

CHILDREN’S ACTIVITIES (11A-2P) @ KING NEPTUNES

ATV WAGON RIDES FOR KIDS ($2)

PONY RIDES ($5) IN THE PARK

“You can’t buy happiness but you can buy tea and that’s kind of the same thing”

I’ve been craving chai lattes lately and I blame it solely on Caffe Vero (1 Canada Street, Lake George) and their delicious beverages. CaffeVero-1I’ve been familiar with Caffe Vero since their last place in the village but they just got settled at their new place down the street, it’s beautiful and they make a solid chai latte FYI.

I went with my family for breakfast and they have every thing breakfast you would ever want to eat, like my personal favorite, homemade bagels (yum). If you’re looking for views of the newly updated place, you’re going to have to check it out on your own because their website is still under construction in terms of changing it over from the old place but take my word for it, it’s a huge step up from before. I’ve gone to a lot of restaurants and this food came out faster than I’ve ever experienced out eating before. We got our drinks and before we knew it, the food was cooked fresh and put in front of us.

I ordered a breakfast sandwich on a homemade whole wheat everything bagel. It was honestly between that and french toast but how do you turn down a homemade bagel, the answer? CaffeVero-2You don’t. The eggs were cooked beautifully and the perfect amount of bacon but my only complaint is that I wish it was bigger. You know that feeling when you eat something amazing and you wish there was more because it’s gone already but then you give yourself time and realize that if you ate anymore you would’ve made yourself sick? It was that. The bagel was thinner than some of the chain bagels in the area but after everything digested, it was perfect.

I took a large chai latte to go and went on my way. If you’re looking for a great spot to relax, grab a bite and get some hot delicious beverage in your stomach, check out Caffe Vero for sure.CaffeVero-3 It’s got its own parking lot so you don’t have to deal with the crazy Lake George Village parking  and you end up with something delicious (even if you’re like me and don’t drink coffee). What’s your favorite hot beverage? Team coffee? Team tea? Team hot chocolate? Or something else?

“All great change in America begins at the dinner table”

Ronald Reagan

I’ve kept this a bit of a secret but I’m so excited to discuss this new (kind-of) culinary journey I’m about to begin. I was so happy to hear from the great people at City Dining Cards about wanting me to try the Capital Region cards and that’s when my mission began.  CityDiningCards1City Dining Cards have cards for a lot of big cities in the United States but now there’s a deck for the Capital Region and I’m ready to take it on. The cards expire December 31st, 2015 and my goal is to use each one and utilize the benefits.

To start, when you first open the cards they look like a deck of playing cards, each representing a different restaurant in alphabetical order. The best part is that of each purchase of a deck, 5% goes to local food banks and each deck is only $20 + shipping. The main focus of the deck is Albany but no worries for those of you up North, you can utilize them too since they feature restaurants in Clifton Park, Latham, Saratoga Springs, Schenectady and everywhere in between.

The way they work is that if you spend $30 or more on food at one of the featured restaurants, when you redeem the City Dining Card you receive $10 of off your bill. There are even a few Wild Cards in there like a free loaf of bread at Bountiful Bread or a free coffee at Honest Weight Food Co-Op.

I love this whole idea because while looking through the restaurants, I didn’t realize how many I’ve never experienced before and this is my chance! Expect pictures and comments about how well the City Dining Card worked, how easy it is to utilize and still eat on a budget and how many of my friends flocked to me the minute I said I had a discount at all of these local City Dining Cards 2restaurants.

The best part? I have a few decks to give away over the course of the next month. Tell me your favorite Capital Region restaurant and I’ll pick my favorite 4 to win a City Dining Card: Capital Region deck of their very own. Hope you have fun on this City Dining Card journey with me! I haven’t even used it yet and I already purchased the Buffalo edition for a friend for her birthday! Have you utilized City Dining Cards before?

Lake George Winter Carnival Weekend One

I LOVE the Winter Carnival. The snow doesn’t bother me in December because I’m looking forward to Christmas and my birthday. Then, we get caught up in New Years Eve and New Years plans. Then, prepping for the Super Bowl and then suddenly we find ourselves stuck in the middle of nothing with the snow still coming. That’s what the Lake George Winter Carnival is for. It takes you out of those Winter doldrums to find the fun in snow again and here’s what’s going on this weekend for the VERY FIRST weekend of the carnival.

LG Winter Carnival Logo

OPENING CEREMONIES (SAT) 12:00PM- SHEPARD PARK

LGWC PARADE (SAT) 4:00PM

ICE DIVING DEMONSTRATION (SAT/SUN)

OUTHOUSE RACES (SAT) 12:30PM

CHILI COOK-OFF (SAT) 12:30PM- SHEPARD PARK

TOAST MARSHMALLOWS ON THE BEACH (AFTER PARADE) *FIREWORKS*

DOGSLED RIDES ON THE LAKE (SUN) $20

:::::EVERY WEEKEND:::::

FIREWORKS (SAT) 6:00PM

HELICOPTER RIDES (W/ A FEE)

LG DOG’S GOT TALENT SHOW (2:30P)

WISH LANTERN FLY OFF (SAT) 5:30PM

CHILDREN’S ACTIVITIES (11A-2P) @ KING NEPTUNES

ATV WAGON RIDES FOR KIDS ($2)

PONY RIDES ($5) IN THE PARK

Anything I can add to your to-do list?

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