Oh, hi. It’s been nearly a month since I gave you my very first digital download, a printable May calendar, so now it’s time to get your printable June 2017 calendar, available at the bottom of this post as a free digital download.
Because the theme of everything in the fucking world right now is “put a monstera on it,” I put a monstera on it. And as much as I love color, I’m no stranger to the busted-ass printer so I’ve created a slightly different black-and-white version as well. As I mentioned last month, if you’re into coloring and have a stash of colored pencils or fine-point markers, you can fancy it up yourself.
I really do need to get around to setting up a newsletter so I can force you all to pretend to like me before I give you free shit. But until that happens, the only thing I ask in return is that you follow me on Instagram already. That’s not so hard, now is it?
And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram. (We’re on the honor system here. Don’t be a dick.)
Spring is almost over. I mean, in like a month, but I’m going to miss it because I really fucking hate summer with its under-boob sweat, asshole mosquitoes, and blazing death sun. And while we still have a few weeks until the official switch, it is almost Memorial Day —which doesn’t technically mark the change of seasons, but it’s definitely when people start wearing flip flops like they’re actual shoes or something.
Anyway, I’m going to enjoy spring while I still can which means — yes — more rhubarb! This time, I put it in a sparkling pink lemonade. But it’s not, like, that fucking corn-syrup lemonade you buy in the store. It’s fresh-squeezed lemon juice and club soda. The sweetness comes from rhubarb syrup. Remember that stuff? I posted the recipe here. And here. And here. AND here. But I’ll post it again down below because I’m a fucking nice person who understands that you’re busy and you probably don’t have all damn day to click all over the internet.
In addition to making the lemonade sweet, the rhubarb syrup makes it pink. And I hear that’s all the rage these days. Of course, this drink is not super sweet, because that’s not my jam. If you’re not into sassy little tart drinks, you can always add more rhubarb syrup.
This is also one of the rare drinks I make with vodka. It just seemed appropriate, and as far as booze other than whiskey and gin go, vodka isn’t too offensive. (But next week, you’re totally getting a super-cool whiskey lemonade.)
Sparkling Pink Lemonade
2 ounces vodka
1 ounce fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1.5 ounces rhubarb syrup
Mint sprig for garnish
Add the vodka, lemon juice, and rhubarb syrup to an old-fashioned or stemless wine glass. Mix well then add a handful of ice. Top off with club soda, garnish with a mint sprig, and enjoy.
Yield: 2 cups
5-6 cups rhubarb, cut into ½-inch pieces
2 cups sugar
2 cups water
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
Add the rhubarb, sugar, and water to a medium-size pot over medium to high heat, stirring occasionally. Once it reaches a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, and add the vinegar, cinnamon and cardamom. Stir, then let the mixture simmer for at least 30 minutes, or up to an hour. The longer it simmers the more syrupy it will become.
Strain into a bottle or mason jar and let it cool to room temperature, then seal and refrigerate. This will keep in the fridge for weeks.
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Look, I’m a mom. And you know what I don’t want for Mother’s Day? Fucking flowers. Maybe I’m a weirdo, but here’s how I see it: Not only are flowers expensive — and always way overpriced on holidays like Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day — they’re definitely going to die and probably going to give me a headache because I’m allergic to pretty much everything. And you know who will have to clean up the pollen and fallen petals and water that smells like dead Swamp Thing in a week? Me. I’d rather have a sturdy plant.
Except what I really want for Mother’s Day is to be transported back to the bathtub in the Four Seasons my husband and I stayed in a few years ago (only because we had a friend who worked there and he gave us the broken, haunted-ass room at a discount). The tub was, like, six feet long and it didn’t hurt my neck and there was a fucking TV embedded in the bathroom mirror (because apparently when you’re rich, you live in the future). I want to be in that bathtub, all alone, all day. But I don’t really want to be alone, because I want Olivia Pope and her Gladiators (or something equally mindless) on that TV and I also want someone (who won’t talk to me or ask me for anything) to bring me cocktails. And probably a big glass of ice water with lemon in between each drink because when I sleep all alone in my imaginary Four Seasons king-size bed with clean sheets and freshly shaved legs I want to enjoy my 12-hour slumber and not wake up all hot and sweaty and half drunk/half hungover in the middle of the night, unable to go back to sleep. Because that is the fucking worst — at least when you have a very young child.
But I’m a realist. I’m probably not getting my own room at the Four Seasons (though, let’s be honest, I’d take a night alone at a god-damn Motel 6 at this point) and my husband has yet to make any brunch reservations (which is probably a good thing). If I’m lucky, I might get an hour alone on Mother’s Day to wander aimlessly in a TJ Maxx or West Elm, and after my kid goes to bed I’ll likely sneak a soak in my small, shitty tub surrounded by rubber duckies and hope that my wonderful spouse has the good sense to use the downstairs bathroom should he need to relieve himself during my me time.
Still, even though the conditions are less than ideal, you can bet your flower-loving ass I’m going to drink cocktails in the bathtub on Sunday. Specifically the Mother’s Little Helper, a refreshing gin-based drink. It’s sort of like getting flowers because it’s made with St. Germain elderflower liqueur (which is flowery as fuck, but in a good way) and Hendrick’s gin (known for its cucumber and flowery notes). But it’s so much better than flowers. Especially when consumed in solitude.
Of course, it would be just as good during brunch with your lovely family, even if there are actual overpriced flowers involved.
Mother’s Little Helper
2 ounces Hendrick’s Gin
1 ounce St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur
1 ounce fresh-squeezed lime juice
1/2 ounce simple syrup
Lime wheel (or a fucking flower) for garnish
Add the gin, elderflower liqueur, lime juice, and simple syrup to an old fashioned or stemless wine glass. Stir well, then add a handful of ice. Top it off with club soda and garnish with whatever pretty little thing you want to put on it.
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Sunday I hosted my second Crafts + Cocktails event at Urban Provisions in Kansas City’s East Bottoms. This one was officially the Mother’s Day edition — but really just an excuse to drink and get crafty — and we made ridiculously cute earrings and sipped on Ginger and Juice.
Unlike my first event, which was ticketed, for this one we set up six crafting stations and let people come and go as they pleased. Thank the sweet baby Flying Spaghetti Monster it worked out perfectly and everyone was able to get their craft — and cocktail — on. Even better, I didn’t have to hard-boil 420 fucking eggs like I did for the last event.
And of course, I hopped in and made a pair for our lovely hostess, Savannah, who owns Urban Provisions.
I mean, I felt like I owed her something after she came up with this fucking amazing gift wrap. Yep, that’s a real air plant on there.
Follow me on Instagram to learn about upcoming events (which, someday, will also happen outside of Kansas City).
Along with the launch of this here blog in March, I started a festive as fuck event series called Crafts + Cocktails. The name pretty much explains it all, but basically, I pick a theme (usually around a holiday) then invite people to come together and get their craft on while they drink cocktails. It’s festive and fun, and while I’m only doing it in Kansas City for now, I do hope to expand to other cities soon.
On Sunday, I hosted the second event at Urban Provisions, a super-cool little shop in Kansas City’s East Bottoms. For this Mother’s Day edition of Crafts + Cocktails we made earrings and sipped on Ginger and Juice, a sweet, tart cocktail I made with Kansas City Canning Company’s Blood Orange Ginger Shrub (if that sounds familiar, maybe it’s because you saw them featured in Bon Appetit recently?), J. Rieger & Co.’s Midwestern Dry Gin, and a homemade basil-infused simple syrup. I promise to post pictures from the event very soon, but for now, I wanted to share the recipe with you. Because it’s good. Really good.
Ginger and Juice
2 ounces gin
3 ounces Kansas City Canning Co. Blood Orange Ginger Shrub
1 ounce basil simple syrup
Fresh basil for garnish (optional)
Add the gin, shrub, and syrup to a Collins glass. Stir and add a handful of ice. Top off with club soda, give it another little stir, and garnish with basil, if using.
Also, I’d originally intended to make this recipe with rosemary simple syrup and a rosemary garnish, then decided that it wasn’t summery enough and that basil is better with ginger than rosemary. So, if you’re here by way of the first round of recipe cards I left at Urban Provisions, just ignore the part about garnishing with rosemary (OOPS!) and garnish the damn thing with basil! Or rosemary if you’re feeling adventurous. Or nothing. I mean, whatever you do, if you’ve made it this far, it’s not gonna be bad.
Basil Simple Syrup
To make the basil simple syrup, combine 1 cup sugar, 1 cup water, and 1 cup fairly loosely packed basil leaves (some stems are fine, too) in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring it to a boil then reduce the heat to low to simmer for 10-15 minutes, until the sugar is dissolved and your entire house smells like amazing summery basil. Remove the pan from the heat and let it steep for another 15 to 30 minutes. Strain using a fine mesh sieve and discard the basil, then set aside or refrigerate the syrup to cool. This will make about 1 cup and the extra will keep in a sealed jar in the fridge for at least two weeks.
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