• two craft cocktails with blackberries

    Farewell to August Cocktail: A Marionberry Mint Simple Goodness Syrup recipe

    August is waning but my thirst for a craft cocktail shared with friends isn’t. Once my mid-August birthday rounds the bend, I know summer is coming to an end. My birthday typically coincides with the Perseif meteor showers, the hottest days of the summer, and lots of days on the lake. Recently, the Pacific Northwest has seen so much summer smoke from wildfires that August has been far less enjoyable than the long, hot, lazy days of my summers’ past, and some Seattlites with hazy eyes and burning throats are praying for rain and pinning pumpkin recipes on pinterest. But not me. I believe every season is owed its time…

  • Simple Goodness Syrups: Marionberry Mint & a Garden Mule cocktail

    Simple Goodness Syrups have launched, shipped, and wowed their first customers. After a humorously inefficient first shipping process (picture 8 months pregnant Venise carrying an armful of boxes into fedex twenty minutes before closing, and the lady behind the counter looking wary at best) the first shipped bottles are in the hands of customers across the USA and that feels really, really good. We are so proud to share a taste of the Pacific Northwest summer through these first edition Simple Goodness Sister Syrup flavors. We also sold a ton of bottles at the Garlic and Goats Festival at Venise’s farm last weekend to our local community and couldn’t stop…

  • A Fan Favorite: The Genevieve

    Our friends are as much a part of our success as our family and this fan favorite Happy Camper Cocktail original recipe is in honor of one of our besties, Genevieve. Genevieve was one of the OG Happy Campers who offered her critique on everything from the Happy Camper logo to the cocktail menu and this recipe is one that she insisted we put on our menu at our very first event. It was recently featured on SipNorthwest.com as a feature cocktail. It can be a little complex with the Rhubarb Vanilla Bean Simple Syrup, but our already bottled Rhubarb Vanilla Bean simple syrup makes this fancy cocktail a breeze!…

  • Tarragon and Quince Cocktail Recipe

    The Tarragon is currently reaching the end of it’s productivity in the herb garden on the farm but before it goes there is still time to enjoy it’s licorice tangy flavor in a cocktail.  If you are growing tarragon in your garden, you will want to watch it for flowering (the flowers don’t actually flower, they just make little buds) and the yellowing of the leaves towards the end of your growing season. When you start to see these tell tale signs that fall is near you should start to harvest and think about how to store it through the winter. My favorite way to store Tarragon is to freeze…

  • How Henry eats his veggies: one picky 1 year old’s menu

    It drives me crazy that my child won’t eat a balanced diet. Let’s just start there. In theory I know that kids are often picky, heck I was, though that was mostly my sister’s fault. I copied everything Venise did and she remains to this day a particular eater. In practice, Henry’s picky eating aggravates me to no end. I take food really seriously, always have. I love eating it (as an adult I am a pretty adventurous eater), growing it and cooking it. I also hate waste. So watching my child refuse to eat the veggies I have lovingly prepared for him is incredibly frustrating for me. When I first became a parent, feeding…

  • Galentine’s day recipes: Monster Cookies My Way, aka Coconut, Dark Chocolate and White Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

    These cookies were the other hit from Galentine’s Day. I have a terrible habit of trying new recipes before parties which has frequently led to much swearing and boxed Trader Joe’s scones being served (and now the secret is out- if you have scones at my gatherings, it may because I can’t serve f-bombs for dessert and that delectable looking pin was very very deceiving.) Here was such a case, except my gamble led to a big pay out this time. I am in love with these cookies. They are basically my dream cookie: dense, chewy, lacey, filled with coconut and accented by dark chocolate. They are not a traditional monster cookie, but…

  • Galentine’s Day Recipes: Potato Leek Soup adapted from Julia Child’s Potage Parmentier

    I promised to post the recipes from the Galentine’s Day party last week because this soup and the cookies I served were both big hits. The original Julia Child recipe is from the Art of French Cooking and calls it Potage Parmentier, so if you’re serving it for a party I suggest going with that title and impressing les pantalons off of everyone. Serving the same recipe by the name Potato Leek soup keeps it down to earth for an easy Sunday supper. Though an easy recipe, this was a soup 26 months in the making. I originally made it for  Christmas party two years ago, got great reviews, but then promptly forgot about…

  • Yellow Cake with Whipped Cream Filling and Vanilla Buttercream Frosting and a bittersweet “See You Later”

    I have no idea how to hold it together while writing a post about goodbyes, however temporary, so let’s just call this a cake recipe post. Today, my very best friend since the age of 15 is finally, after years of waiting, off to begin officer training in Alabama with the United State Air Force. I show my love in layers, so his going away party cake was my biggest creation yet. I am happy for him to begin this adventure, since adventure has after all been the common thread in our stitching, tugging us along in life in varied directions, states, relationships and careers. I’m proud that he made…

  • Waldorf Red (aka Red Velvet) Cheesecake Ice Cream

    Here it is, February 15th- the day when men in the USA collectively sigh with relief, thankful that they remembered to pick up the flowers or make the fancy dinner reservation. It is a day that, for me, is beginning with ice cream and deceit. I made this ice cream for my husband for his Valentine’s Day present, so I know it is wrong to be opening up the handwritten “happy Valentine’s Day love!” container and eating a few bites, but I simply cannot help it. This stuff is that good. We have a Valentine’s Day tradition of experiences over gifts. Neither of us enjoys a big crowd in a…

  • Chocolate Covered Sea Salt Caramels

    Signatures can be a double edged sword. For sake of example: While Stairway to Heaven brought Robert Plant and Led Zeppelin a great hit, it also brought an endless deluge of requests for the song, so much so that years after its release, Plant refused to play the song in concert. And a more personal example: our Grandma Nancy wears Clinique perfume. It is so completely entrenched in my brain’s idea of her that I cannot walk through an airport or mall without smelling it on someone else and immediately craning my neck for a sight of her. She has worn it as long as I can remember and she…