At my house, we’ve become big believers in the cocktail hour. Our children are grown and only pop in here and there, so what used to be the big  family dinner time hustle, is now much more calm and laid back for us.  Instead of having to economize and really stretch a dollar on dinner as much as I did when the kids were young, now you will usually find me fixing something new or something a bit more complex for my husband and myself (and whichever of the kids might drop home for the evening.).

Enter: The Cocktail Hour

Cocktail hour- cranberry martini


My husband and I have really come to look forward to this in the evenings.  Its the time of day when the two of us can talk about our day, relax and just BE in a way that was, lets face it, pretty dang rare when you’ve got a young, growing family!

I love it! My husband usually likes an Old Fashioned or just a nice scotch straight up and I almost always have a cold gin martini (which I am constantly trying to perfect….I’ll keep you posted).

If it’s nice outside, we sit out on the deck and watch the sun go down, but sometimes our best conversations happen just sitting in the kitchen at the breakfast nook, sipping our cocktails. It isn’t a long time……45 minutes….maybe an hour, but it’s nice. It’s like our time, carved out and special. Of course it doesn’t always happen. His schedule is all over the place, but when he comes home at a decent hour, we make a point of it. After that, its dinner, some TV, emails, texts and all the rest.

But The Cocktail Hour. That’s ours.

Speaking of cocktails, we are still on a quest to find new, Christmasy cocktails that we enjoy. Martini fans rejoice!  I have your Christmas cocktail. This is light and not too sweet. Definitely not as sweet as a cosmopolitan, but just as pretty and with a taste that is little more complex.

The Cranberry Martini

Cocktail hour- cranberry martini


1.5 oz vodka

1/2 oz orange liqueur

1/2 oz dry vermouth

2- 1.5 oz cranberry juice cocktail

Chilled martini glass and cranberries for garnish

Combine all liquid into a cocktail shaker with ice, and shake until frost forms on the shaker. Pour/strain into the chilled glass and garnish with cranberries.

Cocktail hour- cranberry martini

Let me know what you think. This is an easy one to adjust to your personal sweetness preference as well.

Do you have anything that you do routinely, to spend time with your husband or significant other?  (And maybe yours doesn’t revolve around alcohol, but hey- no judging).

I’d love to hear about it. As always, thanks for reading!