The Kolb Team would like to extend our sincerest wishes for a wonderful holiday season to all of our clients and friends! We are so grateful for all of you and hopeful that this holiday season will be filled with love, abundant generosity to others, and most of all new memories with family and friends. It is a season of joy and happiness, and we thought it would be fun to share some interesting holiday facts with you.
- A type of doughnut is the most popular Hanukkah treat in Israel, not the latke (potato pancake) like you might think. In Israel, the most widespread food item sold during the eight-day holiday is reportedly sufganiyot, a doughnut traditionally filled with strawberry jelly.
- The Hanukkah Menorah isn’t actually a Menorah. The iconic symbol of Hanukkah is the candelabra with nine candles, eight of which are at equal height with a ninth one elevated slightly above them. However, this type of candelabra is actually called a Hanukkiah. The word “menorah” is Hebrew for “lamp” and an actual menorah is a candelabra with seven candles all at the same height.
- Jingle Bells was not originally a Christmas song. "Jingle Bells" may be one of the most well-known Christmas songs, but it was originally composed as a Thanksgiving tune. Written by Unitarian Savannah, Georgia church organist James Lord Pierpont in the 1850s, the song was first performed during a Thanksgiving concert at [his] church. It is also the first song ever played in space by the crew of NASA's Gemini 6A space flight as they got into the Christmas spirit and made history when they played "Jingle Bells" on December 16, 1965.
- The Statue of Liberty is the largest Christmas gift ever given. Standing over 150 feet tall and weighing 225 tons, the Statue of Liberty is an impressive figure. And since it was considered a Christmas gift when it was given to the U.S. by France in 1886, it's officially the largest Christmas present in the world.
- Every year, our own Chandler, Arizona has a 30-foot Christmas tree made of tumbleweeds. It takes 1,200 tumbleweeds to create the structure, which is then covered in glitter and lights, as well as 20 gallons of flame retardant… just to be safe!
All of us at The Kolb Team are so appreciative of each and every one of you and feel so fortunate to be doing something that all of us love with people like you! Let’s all go make 2022 a safe and blessed year for everyone we come across.
“Contingent” in any sense means “depending on certain circumstances.” After an offer has been accepted, finalization of the closing can be contingent on certain terms, such as, inspection, appraisal, or closing of another property.
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Recipe of the Month
Best Ever Holiday Cookies: Yields 5 Dozen 2-inch Cookies
- 1½ cups powdered sugar
- 1½ cups powdered sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla
- ½ tsp almond extract
- 2½ cups flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cream of tartar
- Cookie cutters of your choice
- Frosting or royal icing of your choice
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- In a large bowl, cream softened butter, sugar, and eggs. Gradually add flavorings and combined dry ingredients into the creamed mixture. Mix until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
- Chill dough 3 hours or longer. (This is the secret to the best cut-out cookies!)
- Roll out dough in powdered sugar and cut into desired shapes.
- Bake at 375°F for 7-8 minutes, or until cookies just begin to brown around the edges.
- Frost with desired frosting and enjoy! Royal icing is best for cookies that will be stacked – just be sure the icing is dry before packaging the cookies.
Our toy and "pj" drive was another huge success this year! Sun Lakes you make us proud! Thanks to the Sun Lakes Quilting Ladies who donated 32 beautiful handmade baby quilts.
This drive and the generous donations benefit Jacob’s Mission, an organization dedicated to helping foster children and their families. For Thanksgiving this year, they fed 150 children who did not have a place to go for the holiday.
Jacob's Mission is currently experiencing a large number of new foster children in the system, so your help is greatly appreciated!
Vendor of the Month: Clever Chef Catering
Clever Chef Catering, LLC is a bartending and food service company that conveys empathy and compassion, and delivers on its promises of excellent service to you! If you have a party, wedding, or other celebratory get-together coming up, give them a call to learn more about how they can make your event fun, memorable, and delicious! We at The Kolb Team always call Tim and Mary to provide refreshments for our larger events – they are amazing!
Tim and Mary Schess – 520-494-7361
- California buyer looking for 2 or 3 bedrooms plus a den with a pool and a golf course view. 2-story home is ok. Would like 2.5-car garage.
- Buyer moving from Virginia to be near daughter. Looking for a 2 bedroom around 1800 square feet. Has pre-qual and is ready to go.
- Buyer looking for a home in Cottonwood with a lake view, close to walking path. 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, and an office space. Wants an open floor plan with vaulted ceilings, as well as a small yard.
- Buyer looking for a 3-bedroom home in Cottonwood with a private pool.
Before Elf on the Shelf, There Was Only Coal
The book The Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Tradition and its namesake plush main character was released in 2005, and introduced children to the idea that elves would visit them between Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve to ascertain whether the young ones would be placed on Santa’s naughty or nice list when the elfin spies returned with their intel to the North Pole.
Prior to this, the threat of coal in one’s stocking on Christmas morning was a method that encouraged – and perhaps goaded – kids to behave “nicely”. But how did the brownish-black sedimentary rock become a part of the holiday?
While it’s difficult to pinpoint exactly the tradition of coal for mischievous or ill-behaved little ones, most historical accounts agree that it originated in Europe. Before Christmas stockings as we know them today came about, children in 16th century Holland would leave their clogs by the fireplace, and awake to find them with either – to use a Halloween reference – treats like cookies and candies or tricks like coal, depending on whether they were good or bad (referring to behavior, of course). La Befana, Italy’s pre-Santa Christmas character, was called either an old woman or a witch, and may have left coal, sticks bundled together, or savory aromatics like onions or garlic… certainly not something a child would want to receive. Germanic legend gave us Saint Nicholas, a Christian saint from the 4th century who secretly left gifts in socks (like coins and candies), and this is where the story of Santa Claus is thought to have originated. But the Alpine region of Europe (which includes Germany, Austria, Switzerland, to name a few countries) came up with a persona in the 1500s, whose appearance probably would’ve frightened even Dr. Seuss' The Grinch. Described as “a beast”, Krampus was to blame for punishing youngsters on Christmas. Children throughout the past several hundred years have been warned about coal for Christmas, and it continues to this day.
So even though many parents warn “Santa will leave you a lump of coal”, it wouldn’t really be his doing at all (and we don’t mean that mothers and fathers would carry out the disappointing deed). Also, the tale of lump-filled stockings is curious because for centuries, coal was used to warm homes. Even while children probably would have preferred something fun, receiving a source of heat in 1800s Europe, when and where many families lived in poverty, might not have been all that unwelcomed, and actually considered a very valuable surprise.
Today, the traditional story of coal at Christmas can be shared with anyone, regardless of their behavior throughout the year, and carried out through sweets that look like the real thing but are actually either hard candies, chocolate, or homemade with chocolate sandwich cookies, marshmallows, and butter. We hope you receive only the edible “coal” treats, and have a wonderful holiday season chock-full of joy, happiness, prosperity, and excitement for the coming year!
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Real Estate Update
Wondering about your Neighbor’s Home Sales Price? Find out here to see what sold last month. The report is broken down by HOA, address, and floor plan (if the agent listed the model in MLS).