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We picked out our Christmas tree on a mild winters evening. Being a little later than was typical this year, we didn’t follow our usual traditions and also chose to decorate a little differently this season.

In the past, we have had two Christmas trees in our home, and I’ve hired a decorator to help with the ornamentation of the house. However, we settled on one tree for our family room, and the kids made a game out of decorating the tree and merrily embellished the mantle, while I gave the rest of the house a just a sprinkle of adornment after mixing a festive cocktail. Our minimal, homemade but personal touch felt very warm and special, and completely within the wonderful joyful spirit of the season.

christmas tree

– our simple christmas tree


spiced pear punch

3 cups ice

1 1/2 ounces pear vodka

1 ounce fresh clementine juice

1/2 ounce St. Germain elderflower liqueur

1/4 ounce angostura bitters

In a cocktail shaker, combine ice, vodka, clementine juice, elderflower liqueur and bitters. Shake vigorously until mixture is well chilled. Strain into a glass.