80 years ago today, the amendment was ratified to repeal the prohibition of alcohol in the United States. Water, grain alcohol, mash/juniper berries/potatoes/etc…it really seems like a lot of work to make your own “bathtub gin.” Although not usually made in a bathtub, bootleg spirits are about as American as apple pie, as is the idea of personal freedoms. Sidenote, did you know that many modern cocktails were designed to mask the taste of homemade alcohol?
Zelda declares her favorite skill.
One of my favorite drinking holidays, Repeal Day’s website tells you the basic idea behind its celebration: “There are no outfits to buy, costumes to rent, rivers to dye green. Simply celebrate the day by stopping by your local bar, tavern, saloon, winery, distillery, or brewhouse and having a drink. Pick up a six-pack on your way home from work. Split a bottle of wine with a loved one. Buy a shot for a stranger. Just do it because you can.”
You can celebrate – just like Jack! – with some ideas here:
♠ Art of Manliness (of course I bring them up whenever possible) has a great article about classic holiday cocktails, I personally recommend Buttered Bourbon anytime it’s chilly out.
♠ The Bourbon Babe has a few posts about ways to celebrate with, yes, bourbon.
Cheers to Repeal!
Gifts are hard when they are forced. I love giving people presents spur of the moment, or I see something that just screams their name, or it will make them laugh. When it gets to be this time of year, I absolutely blank on something to give even my best of friends. And as I read more about the cost of mass produced material things – not only monetarily, but environmentally – it gets me sad to think that a gift I give is dispensable and holds no meaning.
So i have some ideas for you (and me) regarding thoughtful, from-the-heart gifts. Simple, useful, beautiful – I’m really striving to hit at least one (if not all) of these marks for my gift-giving checklist. Here goes my first little idea batch:
A necklace of the month club is a great way to give a close friend or loved one jewelry, even if you aren’t sure of their style. Midwinter’s collections are stunning, so it was my first choice as a NotM. I also want to have some sort of tangible gift to give the recipient to acknowledge the gift is coming in the mail, so I think I will make a little pasta necklace and attach a card, letting them know what’s on the way. My second favorite Necklace of the Month would have to be Tiny Hands’. Any jewelry line that features s’mores, corn dog earrings and a waffle necklace featured on Parks & Rec is immediately on my Nice list.
One more note, with Midwinter: If you know someone who is a diamond in the rough, these rough-cut diamond earrings are so choice.
For gentlemen, jewelry is a lot more iffy. There’s always tie tacks and cufflinks, but how often do you see the guys in your life wear those? For something that might be worn as an everyday item, think about this ring from Kathryn Riechert.
Simple yes, but something very special.
See another gift guide: Design Mom has started some very thoughtful pinboards for all sorts of gifts, so check those out, too. If you have kids, she has a great one for things kids can make.
December is probably the month when you need a calendar tucked everywhere. On the wall, on your office desk, in your purse, stapled to your forehead…just to remember all the parties, and white elephant shopping, and cookie dates (That’s a thing, right? Who wants to have a cookie date with me?). So, here’s the new batch of calendars, not guaranteed to make you on time to your appointments, but to remind you in a festive and fabulous way!
I am hoping the few regulars like Terrain and Alma Loveland will wow us yet again!
The Beaver Moon, also called the Frost Moon, is when everything truly settles into the colder season. This was the time to set beaver traps before the swamps froze, to ensure a supply of warm winter furs. Another interpretation suggests that the name Full Beaver Moon comes from the fact that the beavers are now actively preparing for winter. It is sometimes also referred to as the Frosty Moon. Beavers are preparing for winter, and you can, too.
♠ I get my last hair cut and color before the new year. During the holidays it is much too crazy for me to think about carving out time to get something done. Better to get it done now, than not at all until…March.
♠ Stock up all your cold & flu remedies, and catch them before they start with vitamins and daily lemon water with ginger. If that doesn’t appeal to you, Real Simple has some other ideas for prevention, like taking a daily brisk walk, wash your hands more frequently than you would.
♠ Design Sponge also has a great list of the creative community’s favorite prevention tips.
♠ Walk around your house and think about insulation. Are there drafts that need to be re-caulked, or perhaps a “snake” can help keep out the cold?
♠ Bird and Moon has a great little comic about how to take your winter cues from animals:
I was trying to find something on Netflix to help me sleep the other night, and rewatched Prohibition. I noticed that one of the episodes was called “A Nation of Scofflaws,” and I had saved this recipe for a while. Here we go!
- 2 oz Bourbon or rye whiskey
- 1 oz Dry vermouth
- .25 oz Fresh lemon juice
- .5 oz Grenadine
- 2 dashes Orange bitters
Add all the ingredients to a shaker and fill with ice. Shake, and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
1924, from scoff (v.) + law (n.). The winning entry in a national contest during Prohibition to coin a word to characterize a person who drinks illegally, chosen from more than 25,000 entries; the $200 winning prize was split between two contestants who sent in the word separately: Henry Irving Dale and Miss Kate L. Butler.