My Home Bar: The Single Guy

This edition of My Home Bar is about the capriciousness of experimenting…and the recipe, yes, of course.

I found this recipe via Esquire’s food section. Their interviews with bartenders are great, and I love when the bartenders chat about their favorite concoction/ signature drink. You can read the whole interview with New Mexico bartender Leahi Mayfield here, but here is the “recipe” she mentioned that sparked my interest.

What’s in a Single Guy? You do tequila, a splash of triple sec, a splash of sweet-and-sour, and then a splash of cranberry.

A side note though: since you’re probably at home reading this, do yourself a favor and make your own sour mix. There is no reason to submit yourself to pre-made sour mix, unless you are really itching for a doozy of a hangover tomorrow. They are waaaay too sugary. This is the recipe I used, from Serious Eats.
Once making my own sour mix was done, I felt like I could do no wrong. I mixed 2 oz silver tequila with 1 oz each of triple sec, sour and cranberry.
This is where it kind of went off the rails. I have a feeling that silver tequila might not have been the best for this. It probably needs the caramel, golden notes to blend well with the other ingredients. Also, pure cranberry over my cran/grape/pom blend.
On a beautiful note though, I just had to add this short called “The Birth of a Barrel.”

Friday Links, Ready to Go

I had started to make the link collage and realized, I just like this photo better. From my recent camping trip.

Here’s some happy discoveries for this week:

Freetail Brewing is a brewery in San Antonio and yes, they’re named after a bat. I want to go to there.

♠ I don’t really need to say much besides: bacon BBQ hot dogs. But I will mention this video about why you should spiral cut your hot dogs. More nooks and crannies!

♠ On the note of grilling (we keep our BBQ’s fired up year-round in these parts), a grilling cheat sheet, maybe the most important cheat sheet.

♠ Did you any of you receive the delia*s catalog when you were middle-schoolers (maybe the only mail you received), and go through and reinvent yourself through clothes you probably wouldn’t buy? I used to think if I had some of the cute dresses and shoes in there, I would instantly become cool. I never did. :/ But, I am happy to say they are still around, and I am seriously considering investing in some shoes. They might not make me cool, but they will help me keep up my Twin Peaks/Lady Lumberjack/Camp Counselor vibe from summer to fall/winter.

♠ This is their list from last week, but babble’s DIYs of the week is a great resource for goodies, and this one includes some mail art ideas!

♠ I was going to do a special Oktoberfest post, but since I’m not really planning a whole lot this year, I thought I’d let my newsletter from Zane Lamprey’s Drinking Made Easy do the hard work. There’s some historical trivia (my favorite!), a beer-stat inforgaphic, and even a beer milkshake recipe! Check it out while you “PROST!”

♠ Lastly, more autumn goodness – I have been playing this “Harvest Moon” cover over and over when I’m by myself:

Banned Book Week: September 30-Oct 6

Banned Book Week, along with Space Week and S’mores Day, is my favorite non-paid “holiday” to celebrate. I can’t imagine a time, or a place, where I would not be allowed to read something on the basis of another person’s belief. I feel grateful to live in a country that I can decide for myself what I will and will not read, and not have someone with different values than me decide for everyone. Not to get all preachy, but to put it in a different perspective: I would be a very different person if I was forbidden from reading The Outsiders, or a Wrinkle in Time. I think I would mostly be different in that I would have actively searched those books out first and read them with clandestine pleasure.

Anyway, on to the fun part of Banned Book Week: The books and the art!

♠ This is a list of frequently challenged books (can you believe how many times Of Mice and Men has been questioned?)

♠ The banned book I chose to read this year was In the Night Kitchen. Babies are born naked, and seem to enjoy being naked the most, so why is that the basis

♠ Create a button on your website, or take a look at all these downloads and clip art. My favorite is the FORBIDDEN poster.

♠ I wish this burning bookmark wasn’t discontinued – it is perfect for such a holiday.♠ This blog post has some really cute sketches. If I worked in a library I would totally print some of those out and stick them in the stacks.

♠ A beautiful video: The Birth of a Book, via The Telegraph, UK:

♠ I cannot even begin to tell you of all the crafts that revolve around books, but in my research of course I have to share a few. Newsprint manicures, book covers made from t-shirts, and even a whole Pinterest category of book related fun! Get at it and read those banned books!

CAKE FOR BREAKFAST – something no one should be banned from reading about.

New Spoonflower: Create Your Own Wallpaper!


Sigil fabric photo my own, others via Spoonflower

Have you heard of or tried Spoonflower? They are a business that turns your ideas, designs, photos into fabric! I have gotten samples of photo fabric, and even purchased sigil fabric for a very special Game of Thrones-inspired pillowcase(photo above). I am a big fan of Spoonflower.

The email this morning was their news that they are now offering removable wallpaper and wall decals!

I am so excited about the possibility of having removable wallpaper that has been lovingly created absolutely thrills me! You could let your imagination run wild. Anything you fancy – you could even buy a strip and create a photobooth backdrop for a themed party!

New Pedometer and, How Much Walking is “Healthy” or “Enough”

My dog knows the meaning of sedentary. Do you?

I just got a pedometer a couple weeks ago. Not a FitBit or any sort of bio-reading fanciness, just a $22 goodie that tells me how many steps I am taking, or in my case not taking, a day. I knew my lifestyle was pretty sedentary, but seeing it on a digital screen kind of makes it real. I have been trying to read up on how many steps I should be taking a day. A number that is thrown around a lot is 10,000 but for someone who has an office job, is that conceivable? I’m off to try! I found some good info on about “What Should Your Step Count Goal Be?”

Here is the list they provide, which I think is a good guideline:

Classification of pedometer-determined physical activity in healthy adults:
1) Under 5000 steps/day may be used as a “sedentary lifestyle index”
2) 5,000-7,499 steps/day is typical of daily activity excluding sports/exercise and might be considered “low active.”
3) 7,500-9,999 likely includes some exercise or walking (and/or a job that requires more walking) and might be considered “somewhat active.”
4) 10,000 steps/day indicates the point that should be used to classify individuals as “active”.
5) Individuals who take more than 12,500 steps/day are likely to be classified as “highly active”.

I can attest to the fact that 12,500 steps is “highly active” – the day I hit 14,000 I went for a 5-mile hike up a mountain, shopping and housecleaning. I felt pretty active that day. Rather than wait for the new year to start a resolution, I’m going to make it a forever goal to crank up my pedometering up to 7000 a day. Some days I know it is going to be a struggle, but if it was easy the sense of accomplishment would be greatly diminished, yes?

Do any of you have ways you get those extra steps in each day? I try to park on the 2nd floor to get those extra 200-400 steps (up & down stairs-bonus!) to the office.

My Home Bar: Dark and Stormy

Congratulations! You have made it to fall! All that ice cream, popsicles and Pleases and Sparkles paid off, and now it’s time for apples, turkey and cookie exchanges! In honor of this week of nights blissfully under 100° temperatures, the first day of Autumn (tomorrow!), the dusting off of our tights and knee socks – I give you the Dark and Stormy, but with ginger ale, rather than ginger beer.

Dark & Stormy (with Ginger Ale) by Pastry Affair

Yields 1 serving

2 ounces (59 ml) dark rum
1 ounce (30 ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
6 ounces (177 ml) ginger ale, chilled
Lemon slices and ice, if desired

Pour the rum, lemon juice, and ginger ale in a glass. Serve over ice or garnish with lemon slices, if desired.

I think this is a great last summer hurrah drink, slowly transitioning from the light, citrusy drink of summer into the fall darker-colored, warm-your-chest drinks.