Learning To Celebrate The Holidays + Winter Rum Punch

Holiday traditions are hard for me because Thanksgiving is the only tradition that I celebrate year in and year out. Only since moving back to California have I started celebrating Halloween, and really that was only this past year. As for Christmas, I still haven’t gotten into it.

Rum Punch 1

It’s not that I dislike any of these holidays, but I do think that growing up in a family that celebrated traditional holidays differently has made me less interested in, or less accustomed to,  celebrating the holidays. Maybe I’m simply being an unconscious contrarian, it wouldn’t be the first time.

Rum Punch 2

So when I think about holiday traditions, I often feel like I don’t have any. Which is tough. Especially because I’m surrounded by people who love and look forward to their holiday traditions. And I mean LOVE their holiday traditions. I’m talking about a fervor for decorating gingerbread houses, a yearning for building holiday wreaths, and the excitement to wake up at 2am for Black Friday shopping.

Rum Punch 3

But I do have one practice that I started last year for brunch on Christmas day that I hope to make a holiday tradition–a one-bottle-per-person approach to mimosas for Christmas brunch.

The idea came to me when Elizabeth invited me to her Christmas brunch. I thought long and hard about what I could contribute, but because I was still learning to cook in an allergy-inclusive way, I wasn’t ready to contribute food, but I knew I could contribute alcohol. So I bought one bottle of prosecco per person and enough orange juice to go around. You can find proof on my Instagram.

Rum Punch 4

My mimosa recipe is equal parts champagne and orange – pretty basic. Another cocktail that I think will take your holiday party to the next level, if only because it’s incredibly easy to make and dangerously easy to drink, is rum punch. It’s a drink that has it’s foundation in winter citrus juices and apples in the form of a hard cider. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

Featured Rum Punch

Winter Rum Punch
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 1 Drink
  • 1 oz dark rum
  • 1 oz light rum
  • 1 oz grapefruit juice, freshly squeezed
  • ½ oz simple sugar
  • Splash of lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • 2 oz of hard cider
  • Sprig of rosemary, fresh garnish
  1. Combine the dark rum, light rum, grapefruit juice, simple sugar, and lemon juice in a shaker with ice.
  2. Shake it like a salt shaker. Just kidding, shake vigorously.
  3. Pour into a low ball glass or into a glass of your choosing.
  4. Top with the hard cider and garnish with the sprig of rosemary. Enjoy!



By | 2015-12-17T14:53:01+00:00 December 17th, 2015|Categories: Blog, Corn Free, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Peanut Free, Recipes, Soy Free, Vegetarian|Tags: , |0 Comments

About the Author:

A Southern California native, Westley looks forward to the day he brings Quixote home from the beagle rescue center, but until then he is grateful to be surrounded by plenty of friend’s dogs. He brings a different perspective to the table while making sure that the Mary Lee Kitchen team thinks about each action we take. Mary Lee Kitchen is grateful to have him on board.

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