Holiday Yum: Mocktail Mania

Hubby and I toast to each of you! Thank you for another amazing year of blogging fun, friendship and family! We wish each of you health, happiness and uber success in 2013!

Hubby and I toast to each of you! Thank you for another amazing year of blogging fun, friendship and family! We wish each of you health, happiness and uber success in 2013!

Today I am pulling up the rear of our wonderful Holiday Yum blog series. Please extend a bazillion thanks to our uberlicious hostess, the ever-fabulous Kathy Owen who initiated, organized and ran a splendidly fun blog series. I hope you’ve all enjoyed it.

New Year’s Eve is around the corner and I thought what better time to do a post on some responsible holiday “hostess with the mostess” practices followed by some uberlicious mocktail suggestions.

Being a Responsible Host

Being a good host means protecting your guests, yourself and others, as well as having a good time. You wouldn’t want to wake up the next morning to find out one of your guest’s got nailed for impaired driving or worse, injured or killed someone.

If you are going to host a party and serve alcohol (or have people bring their own booze), it’s smart to think about how you can help ensure your guests don’t drive impaired.

  • Make sure you have food available.
  • Have non-alcohol and low-alcohol beverage options available (see ideas below).
  • If you are providing the alcohol, serve the drinks rather than offering a self-service bar. Self-service may encourage heavy consumption and make it more difficult for you to keep track of your guests’ drinking.
  • Don’t serve alcohol to anyone who is or may be intoxicated.
  • Don’t encourage intoxication by serving extra-strong drinks, double shots or high alcohol content beer.
  • Have numbers available for taxi companies and be prepared to have intoxicated guests spend the night.
  • Stop serving alcohol long before you expect the party to break up. It’s not smart to serve people alcohol immediately before they drive or otherwise try to get home.
  • Watch your own consumption. The more you drink, the more difficult it will be for you to anticipate problems, supervise the event and intervene to avoid potential problems.
  • Have a couple of volunteer designated drivers who are willing to chauffeur people home.

What do you do if your drunk friend/family member insists on driving?

Insist they don’t drive. Obviously you don’t want to physically tackle them but if you can calmly and reasonably take the keys from them, do so. Then call them a cab or have someone insist on driving them home.

In a worse case situation, if someone leaves your house and you know they are driving impaired, you can call 911. I can imagine that this would be a tough decision to make but remember you need to put that person’s own personal safety and the safety of those on the road first.

Mocktails

As a responsible host, one of the best things you can do for your guests is to provide some non-alcoholic beverage options. In August, I wrote about how I was a douchebag host for years offering my guests pop and water as a non-alcoholic option and…I mean…it’s better than nothing but good lord people…we can do better for our DDs!

Today there are so many amazing options out there to have FUN with. Options that will give you a hostess with the mostess reputation. Everyone will want to come to your parties and be the DD. You’ll be the talk of the town. Even the biggest boozers will want to convert just to enjoy some of your mocktail madness.

MADD Virgin Drinks

First…there’s my ultimate favorite: MADD Virgin Drinks! OMG can you say delicious?! Hubby and I had the opportunity to try a few of their mocktail options at MADD Canada’s Leadership Conference in September (and they sent us home with samples…squeee) and I can’t say enough about them. The champagne, brut, mojitos and margaritas are to DIE FOR. A.MAZ.ING! And they are 100% alcohol free.

Our MADD Virgin Drink Samples...long gone...must order more!

Our MADD Virgin Drink Samples…long gone…must order more!

Not to mention, 10% of net sales goes to MADD Canada.

Let’s see…serve your guests amazing mocktail drinks…support MADD Canada…win hostess of the year! WIN WIN WIN!

Check out their Canadian Store Locator (most Shoppers Drug Mart carry them) or their US Store Locator to find a retailer near you. You can also order online at their Canadian online store and USA online store. They offer trade and volume discounts. Love that!

Here are some other ideas of fun mocktails you can make at home yourself…

Mock Champagne

Recipe makes 24 servings

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 2 cups cranberry juice
  • 1 cup pineapple juice
  • 4 cups 7UP or Sprite
  1. Combine all ingredients.
  2. Serve in champagne flutes.
  3. Add strawberries or raspberries in each glass to give it a little extra pizazz.

Tornado Twists

Recipe makes 2 servings

  • 12 fluid ounces cranberry-raspberry juice
  • 1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle lemon-lime flavored carbonated beverage
  1. In a pitcher, mix cranberry-raspberry juice with lemon-lime soda.
  2. Pour over ice and serve.

Alcohol-Free Pina Colada

Recipe makes 2 servings

  • 1 cup ice
  • 1 1/4 cups pineapple juice
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  1. In an electric blender, blend ice, pineapple juice, milk, cream, and sugar.
  2. Blend until smooth.
  3. Serve in glass garnished with pineapple wedge or little umbrella.

Sparkling Punch

 Recipe makes 20 servings

  • 2 lemons
  • 3 large oranges
  • 1 (6 ounce) can frozen lemonade concentrate
  • 1 liter club soda
  • 2 (750 millilitre) bottles sparkling apple cider
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 2 trays ice cubes
  1. Thinly slice the lemons and the oranges and place in a large punch bowl.
  2. Pour in the thawed lemonade.
  3. Gently stir in the club soda and the sparkling apple cider.
  4. Add sugar to taste.
  5. Add ice.
  6. Serve in margaritas glasses.

For other fabulous mocktail ideas, check out HGTV’s suggestions. Or Google mocktails for oodles of options.

What are some of your favorite mocktails to serve and enjoy? Be sure to include recipes for all the readers to enjoy. 

On August 1, 2009, my beautiful mother-in-law’s life was cut tragically short by an impaired driver and my stepson’s life changed forever. In honor of Donna and Jordan Kennie, please don’t drink and drive. Impaired driving is 100% preventable. Think about it.

Support MADD Canada and follow them on Facebook, Twitter (@maddcanada), YouTube, and on the Web.

Text MADD to 45678 to donate $5 today. Report impaired drivers – CALL 911.

More blog deliciousness here:

For the month of November and December, I have been proud to be taking part in the Holiday Yum Blog Hop where a group of uber bloggers will regale you with recipes and funny cooking stories.

This week’s highlights:

Already Posted:

Be sure to check out our ever uberlicious host, Kathy Owen’s Holiday Yum page and leave her some blog hop luv!

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Comments

  1. Go, Nat-a-lee and Scott. Great advice for any party hosts on any occasion.

    Those MADD Mocktails look and sound amazing. My favoUrite non-alcoholic party drink is a splash of grapefruit juice with club soda on ice.

    I sometimes offer my designated driver services to party hosts so they don’t have to play bad cops all evening. As a recovering alcoholic, I know how belligerent a drinker can be be when denied another drink and/or their car keys. *shudder* The number of times I assured people I was fine to drive; that I only had two glasses of wine…

    *Double Shudder* The undisclosed drinks I had before arriving at parties, making it impossible for others to know how much alcohol I had in my system.

    Most party drinkers aren’t alcoholics, but alcohol creates a skewed “pride” thought process. “You have the first drink. The Drink has the second. Then, The Drink has you.” The Drink says you’re fine to drive, and to admit otherwise is to admit weakness.

    A bit of humor from another planted drinker can defuse a potentially ugly scene. “Yo! Buddy! Did you get your designated driver yet? Ask Scott. He set me up with one.”

    Another deterrent? Have some friendlies spread “just between us” Intel that you are serious about your drinking and driving prohibition — so much so, they know you once called 911 to report a drunk driver, and now alert police when you’re having a party. They increase patrols in your neighborhood so “be careful and get a sober ride home. I asked Natalie and she set me up. I get to wake up in my own bed instead of a drunk tank. Full service party hostess, that one.”

    To a grand and safe entry into 2013!

    • EXCELLENT advice, Gloria! And love the way you spread party rumors. :-)

      • Thanks, Jenny. I took myself back-to-the-days and thought about what would have made me think thrice before driving home.

        Again, most party drinkers don’t have my addiction. But, when alcohol starts doin’ the talking for drinkers…

        Common and Sense don’t play in the same sentence.

        Besides, I’m not certain I’d have the balls moxie Natalie has when it comes to enforcing rules. Let my friends carry the load and we might avoid ugly confrontations. Or, worse.

  2. Natalie, these are AMAZING! I’m linking this blog post to mine on sparkling wine – hope you don’t mind! Huge hugs and a safe and happy new year to you!

  3. The mocktails look amazing! I plan to spend New Year’s Eve following the way of the hermit (by not going anywhere grin). Happy New Year to you and your hubs (you both look amazing, btw!)!

  4. Great ideas Natalie! Thanks for sharing and have a fabulous 2013!

  5. Gloria, you make some great points! As a hostess, it’s hard to know how early one’s guests have started “celebrating” beforehand. And the pride factor is definitely something to contend with. And these are our friends, which makes the situation even more tricky.

    Natalie, I love your suggestions, as well as your delicious recipes! The problem will be to pick just ONE to bring to the party we’re attending!

    Personally, I think it’s important to plan ahead, so you’re not trying to make decisions while under the influence. If I’m going to be driving later and the party is going to be a long one, I have a cocktail as soon as I arrive at a party, then maybe a second glass (more than two gives me a headache) after some food, and then switch to tea or soda, allowing a few hours before I’m going to leave. Hubby does the same. We make a good team that way.

    Here’s to a great 2013! Thanks for being such a fab part of this Holiday blog hop series, and a wonderful cyber friend. I hope we get to meet one day!

    Kathy

  6. I thought it was great one time when I attended a party, and the hosts had two margarita machines–one with true margaritas and the other with slushies. Your ideas above are great, Natalie! And I love the pic of you and hubby.

  7. Fantastic tips from everyone to ensure a safe holiday. The Holiday Yum Blog Hop was sensational, Nat! Kudos to all who participated and gave us the gift of that beautiful bundle of recipes!

  8. What a fantastic end to the Holiday Yum series. Go Kathy for suggesting it…it was tons of fun. :-)

    Hubby and I are staying in this year, in deference to Baby Girl and the fact that this season has tired us out. We’re laying in the great food, wine and movies in preparation. Whoooo-eeee!

  9. p.s. Happy 2013. You’ve made my year so darn fun…here’s to many more!

  10. And, for the diabetics attending parties who would like to take part in the festivities with something other than drinks clearly labeled diet coke or diet this or that – many of your recipes can be adjusted with the all natural sweeter. Because fruit juice packs such a heavy carbohydrate punch for the diabetic, there are options within the Crystal Light family that have come a long way since they were fist introduced. Here’s wishing you a happy New Year and 2013.

  11. Fabulous post and tips! I read this great study about how impressionable we are. When we believe we’re drinking alcohol, many of us feel intoxicated, whether we really are or not. I’m not pro-dishonesty, but does get me thinking… ;)

    Happy New Year, beautiful! You and your hubby deserve a GREAT one. <3

  12. Hubby Claus! says:

    Happy New Year….every one of Natalie’s “bloggies” has made it another great year…and its hard to make my year any better as Nat’s Hubby!

  13. love the mocktails. I don’t drink much and recently went off diet soda, so these are a welcome addition to my pleasure. Happy New Year, lovely lady. I look forward to a fun year in 2013, sharing your journey

  14. Oooooohhhhhh! Thanks for these recipes!!! This is fantastic!

  15. I have tagged you in my latest blog post. I hope you’ll like it!!

    http://raaniyork.wordpress.com/2013/01/09/very-inspiring-blogger-award-with-slightly-adjusted-rules/

    The post is about the “Very inspiring Blog Award”.

    Have fun!!

    Hugs
    Raani

  16. I just awarded you the Reader Appreciation Award. I don’t know if you got it last year but this is a NEW YEAR and you get to start all over again. Go to http://raaniyork.wordpress.com/2013/01/28/reader-appreciation-award/
    The Badge is waiting for you. . . Hugs :-)

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Trackbacks

  1. [...] And, finally, to help us ring in the New Year, Natalie Hartford shared some festive and delicious Mocktail recipes! [...]

  2. [...] full of hilarity, advice (especially for writers) and genuine feel good stuff. Between her and Natalie Hartford (she was nominated on one of the earlier stars) they keep me laughing and my spirits up. Don’t [...]

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