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The Woodbridge VA Connection, Issue #002 -- February Winter Wonderland
February 15, 2010

February 2010 Winter Wonderland

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Table of Contents

1)Site URLs

2)Introduction

3)February 2010: A Winter Wonderland?

4)On a Mission: Clutter Control

5)Update on 2010 Resolutions

6)New Page:

  • News Blog
    A news twist to what is going on in Woodbridge, Virginia.

7)Featured Visitor FAQs: Is Woodbridge, VA a nice place to live? and What is the best place to live in Woodbridge, Virginia?

8)Recipe of the month: A Breakfast Treat

URLS for Living In Woodbridge VA

Home Page: Living In Woodbridge VA

Site Blog: Woodbridge VA Blog
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Word-Of-Mouth Grows Us All: ***Buzz It!, Call It!, WWW It!***

You’re invited to build a page at Living In Woodbridge VA!

In February 2010 - share a favorite menu by creating your own recipe page on our site.

It's as easy as filling out a form and we'll do the rest. On the Site Blog, toggle open the link titled "Tell Your Story". Fill out the form and we'll do the rest.

"No strings attached" - go ahead, establish your presence on the web by building your page at Living In Woodbridge VA.

You can include photos of your dishes - visitors can add their comments or post questions.

Your submissions will be transferred to the appropriate page as soon as it goes "live".

Until then, they will automatically appear on the blog page.

Just because this months topic is all about cooking, it does not mean you cannot build a page on a different topic, or more than a single page.

  • Do you offer a service? Host a "local" crafting blog?
  • Would you like to post a review for a preschool in the Woodbridge, Lake Ridge, Dale City, Dumfries or Montclair zip codes?
  • Enjoy a particular restaurant? Do tell!
  • Planning an event of interest to local residents? Share it with our visitors and start a thread...

Is cooking your hobby? Looking for a recipe? Need a menu for a special event? I started a Holiday Recipes section but it will be subdivided into many categories.

Important!

Filtering software may prevent you from receiving email from "Living In Woodbridge VA". To ensure that you do not miss any communication, be sure to “white-list” our domain in your email software.

Wish List!

Do you have an idea for a newsletter topic? Would you like to moderate a page on a specific subject? Just fill out the form found on the Contact Us page - we'll show you how.

Welcome!

Happy Valentine's Day... and welcome to the second issue of the Woodbridge VA Connection newsletter.

We thank you for subscribing and encourage the participation of all readers. We've made it super easy for everyone to participate by building their own page on our site.

If you don't see the topic you would like to "moderate" or open for discussion, please let us know and we will build the appropriate invitation thus opening a platform for your topic. We do need to approve all submissions to ensure they remain on topic but it really is as easy as 1, 2 and 3!


February 2010: A Winter Wonderland

January was a time to share resolutions for this new year. How are your resolutions coming along?

Must admit that mine took a hit. Definitely had the best of intentions but was seriously sidetracked by the weather.

We all were!

"Was your landscaping damaged by rain and snow? Ours definitely went through the mill this past month."

"Hollies, boxwoods, nandinas and more were seriously damaged by the recent snowfall. Many smaller bushes are nothing more than stubs. Yes, we knocked and brushed the snow off with brooms as it accumulated but it was not easy to keep up with the accumulation! Let's hope they will grow back stronger."

And to think we were refering to the December snowfall!

We've lived in Woodbridge, Virginia for more than 30 years and witnessed quite a bit of nasty weather, in both the summer and winter variety. However, this has to be the worst weather-related damage we've seen to the woodland area of our property as well as the formal landscaping.

There are lots of broken branches, uprooted pines and arborvitaes as well as shrubs literally crushed by the weight of the snow. It will take all summer just to clean up the yard.

When driving around during the past few days, it is sad to see the number of large trees either with multiple broken branches or simply toppled right at the root ball.

Can't wait for the warmer weather to arrive so that I can get some gardening done. In just a few weeks, the Teaching Garden in Bristow will open again.

Have you ever participated in one of their classes? As soon as I've cleaned the yard and assessed the overall damage, I will definitely need to figure out the ten steps to a greener lawn. Look forward to the March session...and just being able to soak in a few rays - outdoors!

All this indoor time made it easy to organize my recipe clippings. In fact, I decided to use a few of the recipes just to determine if they were keepers. My first trek out of the house was to re-stock the pantry. At Bloom's supermarket, I found several packages of lamb blade chops - ideal for making a lamb ragout. I also picked up the ingredients for a Valentine's Day breakfast treat!

Clutter Control

We're in the process of de-cluttering the house, one room at a time.

Still have lots of crafting supplies in my sewing room [fat quarters, batting, yarn, sewing patterns] to either donate or reserve for a yard sale...when the weather improves!

But...It's high time to remove all the extra large scale "stuff" which has accumulated over time. Time to reclaim living space!

As it is, one thing or another cropped up last year to prevent us from hosting a planned, multiple family yard sale.

Since then, certain items have been donated but others are ripe for the Prince William County Landfill.

Needless to say, it will be done on a Saturday. Why am I not surprised that it their busiest day?

The Prince William County vehicle sticker is no longer our ticket to dump so officials have created a special decal to identify county residents. They read "Solid Waste Disposal" and are free to residents and it allows us to use the landfill, the compost facility and other rural locations.

Although the stickers are not required, they definitely help to keep the line moving on those very busy Saturdays.

Click HERE to order the decals by mail or in person.

Update on 2010 Resolutions

Additional research on the family genealogy is well under way and I did initiate the DNA research. Can't wait to read the results.

One of the my new year's resolutions was to organize family photos in scrapbooks. That little project has not even been started but speaking of crafts? Are you working on any crafts this month? Surely you have photos of the kids playing in mountains of snow...

My niece is expecting her first child late this summer and I am assembling a boys' fall/winter layette. The patterns will be added to the Craft section of our site. Also found additional resources for charity knitting. Lion Brand yarns has dedicated an entire section on their website to both knitting and crochet patterns.

Featured Visitor FAQs

Want to add your two cents worth? Website visitors are looking for reviews and answers to the following questions:

  • Is Woodbridge, VA a nice place to live?
  • What is the best place to live in Woodbridge, Virginia?

Naturally, it all depends on what your plans are, the length of your stay along with a number of other factors. Is this relocation in the form of a permanent change of station thanks to the new base realignment? A new job bringing you to northern Virginia? Are you planning for retirement and considering an "active adult" community?

Yet, I can empathize with these questions as I once had to find answers to both.

Here is a quick breakdown of my "moving" experience: 5 times in two years, 3 times in 4 months and I've lived in 10 different countries and moved 16 times within those countries.

Never in my wildest dreams did I even imagine that I would eventually live in one location - Woodbridge, Virginia - for over 30 years.

As far as our family is concerned - yes, Woodbridge, VA is a nice place to live. As for the best place to live in Woodbridge, Virginia?

New residents can select from a variety of neighborhoods and/or school districts, commuting distance from their work and housing in the form of condos, gated communities, rental apartments, townhouses, duplexes and single family homes.

You can post your reviews on our Site Blog.

Recipe of the Month

Comfort Food...A recipe for Cinnamon Rolls:

Cinnamon rolls have been a family favorite for years now, especially on Christmas morning and birthdays.

But every once in a while I make them, you know - just 'cause.

In this case, it was a reward for being cooped up during the blizzard of 2010.

Over the years, I've experimented with various recipes, most of which resulted in dry rolls rather than the sweet gooey kind that we prefer. Not the rolls glazed with icing, but the rolls drenched in a caramel pecan glaze.

In fact, I purchased commercial baking pans [which are nearly 4 inches deep]. There is nothing worse than having to clean up burnt sugar!

Why such large pans? So the caramel would not ooze out of the pan as they baked and so I could duplicate the huge rolls from TJ Cinnamons. Remember their small store at Potomac Mills?

Here we go...

Prepare a recipe of traditional sweet roll dough [made with whole milk, sweet butter, eggs and sugar] or purchase several packages of Pillsbury® Grands!® Homestyle refrigerated buttermilk biscuits.

Before rolling out the dough into a 15 by 9 inch rectangle, melt 1/2 cup of butter in your baking pan [13 by 9 pan] then sprinkle 1/2 cup of packed brown sugar evenly across the bottom of the pan. Top off with 1/2 cup or more of pecan or walnut pieces spread evenly over the sugar. Set aside while you prepare the rolls.

Roll out your dough to a 15 by 9 inch rectangle and spread with a thick coating of melted butter. Mix 1/4 cup of regular sugar with 2 teaspoons of cinnamon. I adjust the ratio to suit our tastes but there is a fine line between too much and just right.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Sprinkle over the melted butter right to the edges. Beginning on the wide side, roll your buttered and sugared dough carefully into a log. Pinch the open edge to seal and make sure the log is even in size from end to end. You want to be able to cut 15 inch-wide pieces.

Cut 15 even pieces and place, cut side down into your prepared pan. I start with the four corners, then the narrow side [3 rolls] and then the wide side [5 rolls]. There should be a gap between each roll as you are going to let the dough rise again, until doubled - about 20 to 30 minutes. Prepare a large cookie sheet lined with foil.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown. You do not want the top to burn but the dough must be cooked.

Remove from oven, invert your foil lined cookie sheet over the pan and and immediately flip your rolls onto the cookie sheet. Leave the pan over the rolls for a few minutes allowing all the caramel to drizzle out of the pan.

Be sure to set one roll aside for yourself as they will not last long once you bring them to the table. Did I mention that I have to make two batches?

See you next month!
De at Living In Woodbridge VA

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