Cheers to you, my sweet friends, and these festive yuletide cocktails
Cranberry Orange Yule Mule
this post does contain a recipe for an alcoholic beverage. please drink responsibly, especially during the holidays. as a healthy living blogger I like to practice balance and hold myself accountable to sharing my real life with you, which does include a cocktail or two. post contains affiliate links.
OK, I’ve got to admit it. Twist my arm and I’ll tell you – I AM HAVING SO MUCH FUN this Holiday/Christmas season creating recipes for you all. And I’m shocked that that is actually a true statement. When I was planning for my first Christmas as a blogger, I hit full panic mode.
I started making my gift list in October, recipes were planned, emails were schemed up and I was turning my world upside down trying to figure out how I was going to create thoughtful & useful content for you, work full time, give my attention to my family, sell pies & pastries, attend every gathering and still have time to hug my sweet JMan.
You know what I did? I had a mental breakdown, and finally, I cut the crap & got real with myself for the first time in a long time. I stopped obsessing over my gift list, made decisions, and ordered everything online early. In reality, the reason behind the season has nothing to do with gifts, anyway. So why obsess? Wanna know what else? I decided to pass up on a few extra bucks and put aside the idea to sell my pies and pastries. Crazy right? Who turns down easy money during the holidays? You’re looking at her (well, you’re looking at a picture of me above, haha).
I honestly have no idea how or why I decided to write all of this today. The words started seeping out of me. I think I’m trying to tell you that it is OK to take a step back this Christmas. As much as we all sayyy that we’ll take time to rejoice in our families and the gifts the Lord has given us, the reality is, we tend to get caught up in the fuss. I certainly do.
I don’t like to give advice unless it is asked for (one of my pet peeves, to be honest) but I’ll simply tell you what I did this year. And, I’ll let you take it as you please. Here’s how I took a chill pill:
-I planned out what was really truly important to me accomplishment wise. I knew I wanted to do so much for all of you on this blog. I picked out the few things that would be the most helpful, like a Baking Cheat Sheet for my email subscribers, a few extra posts and working toward some awesome partnerships to give you more valuable content. I’m not launching my first e-cookbook, I’m not doing a workshop, and I’m not selling any baked goods. I did buck up and get the tasks done, but I cut the unrealistic stressors out of the equation.
-I figured out what was truly important Christmas-wise. I’m a Christian, so Christmas is by far my favorite time of year. I love the happy hubub, but I picked out the activities and acts that would bring the most joy. Nope, I’m not doing Christmas Cards, attending every party we were invited to, or buying gifts for every single person I know. I want to spend time and energy on those I love most.
-I started taking time to relax & practice gratitude. I wake up, and spend 10-20 mins reading my devotional and sipping coffee. A few weekends have been spent writing, baking & testing recipes. I skipped the gym one night to curl up in front of the Tree and write (while eating a cookie). And, I took a hot shower one Saturday, blew out my hair (brushing it a few times a week is an accomplishment), put on some lipstick and sipped on this Moscow Mule with a twist. Oh, and if you’re wondering, here’s the devotional I’ve been reading:
Not everyone likes to unwind with a drink now and then, but I do. Moscow Mules are one of my all time favorite cocktails, and I wanted to do a festive & simple twist. The cran-orange syrup is made with minimal sweetener – I used maple syrup. Hey gift idea- whip up a few batches of syrup & pair it with some ginger beer & vodka in a basket! Voila!
Let’s put a little jingle in your next family mingle
WHAT YOU’LL NEED:
Fresh Cranberries (I’m sure frozen would work, too)
A fresh Orange
Optional – Rosemary
WHAT YOU’LL DO:
Start by adding the cranberries, water OJ & maple syrup into a saucepan on high. Bring the pot to a boil, reduce heat to medium low and let this reduce for about 15 mins. Strain this into a mason jar or container. Once done, place in the fridge or freezer for a bit until it is cool or at least room temp.
Place an orange slice and a handful of fresh cranberries into the bottom of a copper mug or glass. Muddle these by pressing down on the fruit so it bursts and releases extra flavor. Fill mug with ice, add 1 shot of vodka, 2 shots of cran-orange syrup and stir well. Top the glass with ginger beer. Stir again, and top with more fresh cranberries, orange, and rosemary, if desired. Cheers!
xoxx & Merry Christmas,
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- For The Cran-Orange Syrup:
- 12 oz of Water
- 1.5 cups of Fresh Cranberries (I’m sure frozen would work, too)
- 2 tbsp of Orange Juice
- 1 tbsp of Maple Syrup
- For the Mule
- 2 shots of Cran-Orange Syrup
- 1 bottle of Ginger Beer (you won’t use it all)
- 1 shot of Vodka
- 1 cup (or so) of Ice
- Optional – Rosemary
- Start by adding the cranberries, water OJ & maple syrup into a saucepan on high.
- Bring the pot to a boil, reduce heat to medium low and let this reduce for about 15 mins.
- Strain this into a mason jar or container.
- Once done, place in the fridge or freezer for a bit until it is cool or at least room temp.
- Place an orange slice and a handful of fresh cranberries into the bottom of a copper mug or glass. Muddle these by pressing down on the fruit so it bursts and releases extra flavor.
- Fill mug with ice, add 1 shot of vodka, 2 shots of cran-orange syrup and stir well.
- Top the glass with ginger beer. Stir again, and top with more fresh cranberries, orange, and rosemary, if desired. Cheers!