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Entries in holiday (2)

A Little Holiday DIY

I'm very excited to announce that I'll be doing a 3 hour online class through creativeLive next week on Friday, November 8th from 12:45PM - 4PM. I'll be showing you how to make your own bitters and limoncello for holiday gifts. The class with also touch on ways to use both, batch cocktails and aperitifs, as well as fun gift ideas that use what you've made.

The class is part of a series that includes all sorts of DIY holiday projects like crocheted snowflakes and pinecone ornaments. A few weeks ago we all gathered in the studio the shoot a promo video and if that experience was any indication of the classes they're all going to be a ton of fun.

You can sign up to watch all four or just one live the day they're taped for free or you can purchase the option to have unlimited access to the classes. Here's a link to my specific class, Homemade Liquor Infusions and Cocktail Bitters or the whole series, DIY Holiday Crafts & Cocktails. Be sure to check out the video for a taste of kitschy, wackiness that is in store. 

Handmade Christmas

Christmas makes me anxious. I know I’m not alone in the feeling, but sometimes I just need to state it. December rolls around and I don’t get the sense of joy and giddiness that most do. Instead I feel pressure. I want to give more than I am able, always. I fully accept that the pressure comes from me alone.

On our first Christmas together, while Dan and I were listing all the combined family we needed to consider for gifts and then the extended list of friends Dan also wanted to include, I had a mild panic attack. It was just way too many names for me to handle, my brain just about exploded with the thought how to give a gift to all of them. He stopped me mid-freak out and explained his tradition of handmade gifts only, especially when it comes to the extended list of friends.

I was happy to adopt the tradition. No fighting the holiday shopping masses, no budgeting so as not to break the bank, and best of all no trying to figure out what to give that someone didn’t already have. There’s always room for a jar of jam or a sausage. 

This year we’ve bought a few things and didn’t make quite as much as we planned back in October, but still the pile of gifts made by hand that will travel with us north for the holidays feels good and much less stress inducing than years passed.  

grab a glass and you're ready to goAs you might have guessed a lot of people received a bottle of bitters, there was also green tomato chutney, strawberry jam, peanut butter cups, felted ornaments, crocheted cotton dishcloths, lemoncello, and nocino. But my favorite was the Old Fashioned kits complete with bourbon, bitters, rich syrup, brandied cherries and an orange, all you need to add is soda water.

While a handmade Christmas eases my holiday angst, I still want to make more and give more. However, when I fall short of my high ambitions, as I always do, I feel comfort in the amount of love and care that went into what I have to give.