Classic Hot Toddy with Bourbon & Black Tea

Classic Hot Toddy with Bourbon and Black Tea | Sophster-Toaster Blog

I started experimenting with hot toddy recipes for the first time when the weather turned cold. They’ve been so nice to come home to after taking the puppy for her evening walk on the weekends. Although less traditional, I like to use bourbon over whiskey, rye or brandy because there’s just something so Christmas-y about bourbon to me. I also use black tea instead of plain, old, hot water for added flavour and fortitude.

Classic Hot Toddy with Bourbon and Black Tea | Sophster-Toaster Blog Classic Hot Toddy with Bourbon and Black Tea | Sophster-Toaster Blog Classic Hot Toddy with Bourbon and Black Tea | Sophster-Toaster Blog Classic Hot Toddy with Bourbon and Black Tea | Sophster-Toaster Blog Classic Hot Toddy with Bourbon and Black Tea | Sophster-Toaster Blog Classic Hot Toddy with Bourbon and Black Tea | Sophster-Toaster Blog Classic Hot Toddy with Bourbon and Black Tea | Sophster-Toaster Blog

Ingredients

  • 1½ oz bourbon
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • fresh brewed black tea
  • cinnamon stick

For Garnish:

  • lemon slice
  • 3 whole cloves

Method

  1. Add bourbon, honey and lemon juice to an 8 oz mug.
  2. Top up with hot black tea.
  3. Stir well with cinnamon stick. (Serve with or without stick.)
  4. Pierce lemon slice with cloves, slit part way up the middle, and hang over the side of the mug. (I found it easier to pierce before cut and after making a small slit with a paring knife.)

Classic Hot Toddy with Bourbon and Black Tea | Sophster-Toaster Blog

All photos by me.

Lots of Time to Get it Right

Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog

Now that the puppy is getting older, more mature and more laid back, I feel like I have a lot more time, or energy, – somehow more than I had before – to explore my creativity. I’ve been setting goals for myself lately to not just use this extra energy to explore and practice my photography hobby, but to also have more fun with it. Sometimes the more structured and planned out photo sessions, like this one, can be really stressful. I tend to put a lot of pressure on myself to be perfect and get the right shots before the sun goes down, I get too cold, I get too frustrated and lose confidence in myself, etc., and it can really take the fun out of it.

I’ve caught myself saying the title of this post to myself and those around me nearly every time I pull my camera out. I’m encouraging myself to take it slow, take a chance, and not worry about getting something worth sharing with anyone. Just doing it for me. Strangely, I feel like this push to be creative, more than striving to be good, is inspiring me to grow as an artist, even after a lifetime of exploring this hobby.

Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog Lots of Time to Get it Right | Sophster-Toaster Blog

Dress Larmoni
Coat Old Navy
Scarf H&M
Tights ModCloth
Shoes ModCloth
Mittens Roots
Button Sparkle Collective

Photos by me and Matt Harrison.

Harvest Pumpkin & Apple Kong Stuffing Recipe

Harvest Pumpkin & Apple Kong Recipe | Sophster-Toaster Blog

We bought two puppy Kongs for Pepper before we even brought her home. She loved them so much, we knew we would have to upgrade her to standard Kongs when her adult teeth came in. They have been great for teething, crate training, socializing her to the things she didn’t like around the house, or just keeping her busy when we need a break.

She gets a few stuffed Kongs a day as fun snacks to supplement her puppy kibble. I’m allergic to peanut butter, the go-to Kong stuffing staple, so I’ve had to get creative with puppy safe snacks. I usually stuff a couple of Kongs with canned puppy food, banana, yogourt and apples, etc in the morning and pop them in the freezer for later; but some days, she gets a special treat, like this Harvest Pumpkin & Apple Kong.

Harvest Pumpkin & Apple Kong Recipe | Sophster-Toaster Blog Harvest Pumpkin & Apple Kong Recipe | Sophster-Toaster Blog Harvest Pumpkin & Apple Kong Recipe | Sophster-Toaster Blog

Harvest Pumpkin & Apple Kong

Yogurt is stirred into the pumpkin for a creamy seasonal treat. The apple and carrot are cut differently for an interesting texture and more challenging puzzle.

Ingredients

Makes enough filling for one large size Kong Classic.

  • 1 heaped tsp pure canned pumpkin (not seasoned pie filling)
  • 1 heaped tsp plain yogurt (we use 3% m.f.)
  • three thin apple slices, cut into matchsticks
  • three slices of carrot, cubed

Method

  1. mix all ingredients in a small bowl and spoon into Kong
  2. (optional) top with half a Milk-bone treat, for extra pizzazz
  3. (optional) freeze for 1 hour for a longer lasting snack

Harvest Pumpkin & Apple Kong Recipe | Sophster-Toaster Blog

All photos by me.

A Dress’s Last Hurrah

A Dress's Last Hurrah | Sophster-Toaster Blog

I absolutely adored this dress for years. It’s comfy, casual jersey cotton but has a fuller skirt, ¾ length sleeves and tailored princess seams, so it always felt a little fancier. I could wear it to class or wear it to the couch when I had a cold and it always felt right. I thought little black dresses were magic until I wore this little red dress.

Sadly, nothing can last forever – especially jersey cotton. The bright red colour is now faded, the soft and comfortable t-shirt material is getting thin and distorted, and the stains just won’t come out anymore. The dress hasn’t been fit to wear outside the house without a sweater I’m committed to keeping on for a couple of winters now. It’s almost time to say goodbye, but not before one last hurrah! So here she is, my favourite red dress, in all her aging glory.

A Dress's Last Hurrah | Sophster-Toaster Blog A Dress's Last Hurrah | Sophster-Toaster Blog A Dress's Last Hurrah | Sophster-Toaster Blog A Dress's Last Hurrah | Sophster-Toaster Blog A Dress's Last Hurrah | Sophster-Toaster Blog A Dress's Last Hurrah | Sophster-Toaster Blog

Dress H&M
Sweater ModCloth
Tights Pretty Polly

All photos by me.