Archive for January, 2014

Ava fix

Nearly nine…

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Overheard

Rebecca, while brushing Olivia’s messy bed head before school: “I just can’t understand how this happens! It’s like a bird’s nest.”

Olivia: “I just really love sleep, Mom.”

Owen Fix

“Don’t drink that!”

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“Seriously.”

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“You won’t like it…”

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“…well?”

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“Told you!”

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Overheard: Heart to heart with a six-year-old

Rebecca: “Olivia, I think you are amazing. You are smart and incredibly funny. And, those eyelashes make me want to cry. You’re gorgeous. Are you happy, too?”

Olivia: “Yes, though it’s really hard having an eight-year-old sister.”

Rebecca: “I’m sure that’s true.”

Olivia: “And, it will be even harder having a nine-year-old sister.”

Rebecca: “Is there anything I can do to make it easier?”

Olivia: “Well, you could make her five.”

Hot and cold

Over the last few weeks, we’ve had an opportunity to sample a number of spicy drinks. The first was a tequila-based cocktail with jalapeƱo in Aspen. Then, this nearly undrinkable, pepper-infused ale from Stone, and finally, a vodka cocktail with cucumber, lime, mint and serrano chiles at 715. The latter was most definitely my favorite, and I did my best to recreate it this weekend.

My initial plan was to muddle the chiles with the mint and sugar, but a cocktail-saavy colleague suggested making a chile-infused simple syrup. This plan allowed for easier experimentation and heat control. To make the syrup, I boiled a half cup each of water and sugar along with one and a half sliced serrano chiles. Then, I chilled it for several hours.

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I found a cucumber, lime and mint cocktail (which, by the way, was great on it’s own after the syrup was depleted) and altered it just a bit. Here’s my recipe:

Muddle five mint leaves in each of four rocks glasses. Add crushed ice. Mix the following ingredients and pour over ice.

4 parts vodka
2 parts serrano syrup
2 parts lime juice
1 part cucumber juice
1 part triple sec

The heat from the chile was immediately behind the sweetness of the syrup, but the lime juice kept the cocktail crisp and clean. After far too many weeks of heavy white russians and other holiday drinks, this tasted like a green smoothie in comparison.

Ava fix

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Smith family fix

Courtesy of Doug, who shot this family photo for us over Christmas. You can find more of Doug’s photos here.

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