Baby, its cold outside!

from StyleFrizz

Bennington Low Duck Boot, $298 & Bennington High Duck Boot, $398

The frigid weather we’ve been having in DC is bringing back memories of last winter’s blizzards and record snow accumulation. Brrrr! I get chills just thinking about it! Last winter I felt completely unprepared and didn’t even have a good pair of rain boots to get me through the storms let alone any sort of wintry snow boot. But not this year! I’ve already started to search for a great pair of winter ready boots and have been inspired by the duck boots in the Fall 2010 Tommy Hilfiger ads. “The Hilfigers” from the ads seem like a pretentious lot with far to much time and money on their hands (hello! have you seen the extravagant picnic set-up from the TV ads??) BUT they look amazing in heeled OTK and ankle winter ready boots. Here are my (much) cheaper picks for the upcoming chilly months. And they are all under $100 🙂

Sperry Top-Sider Women's Shearwater, $100.00

Sorel Tivoli, $99.00

Bean Boots by L.L. Bean, Rubber Moc, $64.00

Tommy Hilfiger Canaan, $69.00

“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…”

So overall I feel like I can safely call my holiday cocktail party a success! After weeks of fretting and prepping, everything came together beautifully and a wonderful time was had by all. A few lessons were learned along the way that I would like to share with anyone who is planning to throw a holiday party this year or in the future.

1. Everyone will drink the signature cocktails before the wine and beer. So make sure you have enough mixers/ingredients on hand (a lesson I learned the hard way).

2. You can never have too much toilet paper or too many trash bags.

3. Its nearly impossible to find a cab company that will take reservations between the hours of 8:00 pm and 2:00 am on Saturdays.

4. Despite what some of my guests might have said at the start of the evening, people really do like party games.

5. The holiday channels on Pandora really can’t be beat.

Happy Holidays!!!

I highly recommend Mind Games: A Box of Psychological Play for your next party 🙂

My friend Katie made amazing champagne cupcakes and red velvet cakes balls.

How to Make: Tasty Winter Cocktails

On December 11, I will be hosting my very first holiday cocktail party! Woo hoo! I couldn’t be more excited and have spent the last few days planning, decorating and searching for the perfect holiday cocktails to serve. There are a ton of options out there! I came across everything from eggnogs to hot toddies and ciders to winter sangria. In the end, I went with two beverages that use simple and relatively inexpensive ingredients, which will hopefully save me some money and time in the long run.

Both of these recipes come from the Martha Stewart website. I slightly modified the Berry Little Cocktail to better suit my guests and budget. Here is the original recipe.

How to Make: A Berry Little Cocktail

Ingredients:

1/2 cup sugar
1 cup fresh cranberries
1 oz vodka
2 oz Champagne
1 oz cranberry juice

“In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, dissolve sugar into 1 1/2 cups water. Add cranberries and simmer for 5 minutes, or until softened. Remove from heat and let cool. Strain, discard liquid, and place cranberries on a tray in the freezer for at least 2 hours. Chill vodka, Champagne, and juices, then mix in a champagne glass. Garnish with skewer of 4 or 5 frozen candied cranberries. Reserve the rest for another drink.”

How to Make: A Winter Solstice Cocktail

Ingredients:

1 1/2 oz orange vodka
1/2 oz orange flavored liqueur
1/2 oz freshly squeezed lemon juice
club soda & ice

“In a cocktail shaker, combine vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and ice; shake until well combined. Strain into a chilled martini glass; add a splash of soda.”
Read more at Marthastewart.com: Winter Solstice Cocktail – Martha Stewart Recipes

 

Other Great Holiday Cocktail Resources:

Delish’s Holiday Cocktail Guide (A ton of options to pick from!)

Epicurious’s Drink Recipes (Their list includes holiday beverages like Santa Sangria and the Lemon Rose Bellini. And its sorted by liquor and hot vs. cold drinks.)

SLOSHED! (Posts really great seasonal drinks. I’ll be keeping an eye on this site until party time)

CocktailNerd’s “A Cocktailian Christmas List” (Its not a drink list BUT it is a good gift guide for the cocktailers in your life!)