Hello all! I hope you are having a great festive period. If you are having some kind of party on New Years or you are having some quality time with some loved ones you may be looking for cocktail recipes. I've been experimenting with cocktails ever since I've been old enough to drink (maybe a couple years before, but the least said about that the better). So I thought I would share with you 5 cocktail recipes that I really enjoy that you may want to try out.

A Dream Of Spring 
If you are fed up with the cold weather and you are looking forward to some sunshine. Have a sip of this cocktail and you will be walking among a garden of roses on a warm spring day. It's a really refreshing cocktail and if you eat a cube of chocolate beforehand it tastes like you are drinking Turkish Delight.

For 1 cocktail you will need: 
Three Ice Cubes
Two Slices Of Lime
Dash Of Lime Juice
1 Shot (42ml) Of Gin
1 Shot (42ml) Of Vodka
200 ml of Rose Lemonade

Classic Long Island Iced Tea

The old ones are the best ones. I've been a huge LIIT fan for a while now but a word of warning. It contains 4 different kinds of alcohol so please be careful! 

For 1 Cocktail you will need:
Ice Cubes
Lemon (or Lime) Slices
28 ml of Vodka
28ml of Rum
28ml of Tequila 
28ml of Gin
28 ml of Lemon Juice 
150ml of Coke 

Spiced Cream
Not had enough desserts over the holidays? Well you can combine pudding and a cocktail with this drink. It's sweet but the cinnamon and nutmeg gives it a spicy kick which makes it perfect for the winter months.

For 1 cocktail you will need:
Crushed Ice
Dash Of Hazelnut Syrup
Two Scoops Of Vanilla Ice Cream
1 Shot (42ml) of Honey Jack Daniels 
200ml of Milk
2 Shots (84ml) of Rum (light or dark it's up to you)
A Dash of Cinnamon 
A Dash of Nutmeg
Whipped Cream (to decorate the top)

How to make:
Pour all ingredients in a blender, mix and then pour. Add cream to top.

Sloe-ly Does It
This is a sweet cocktail but the sloe gin gives a kick of warmth. It's fruity and almost like a punch so would be great for a party drink. Shout out to Dan for helping me come up with a pun based name for it.

For 1 Cocktail you will need:
3 Ice Cubes
2 Slices Of Lime
2 Slices Of Lemon 
A Dash Of Grenadine
2 Shots (84ml) Of Sloe Gin
1 Shot (42ml) Of Tequila 
200ml of Lemonade
Dash Of Lime Juice

Tequila Sunrise With A Twist 

This is just your old faithful tequila sunrise recipe but instead of adding grenadine, you just add grape juice. It makes the drink less sickly sweet and more fruity in my opinion, it brings out the tequila as well.

For 1 cocktail you will need:

Ice Cubes
2 Shots Of Tequila 
100 ml Orange Juice
100ml Grape Juice

These recipes are perfect for a party because they are so simple to make and you can make bigger quantities and put them into a pitcher so people can just pour how much they want. 

I love having a drink on special occasions but there are many who don't or can't so please remember that and don't pressure anyone into drinking. Also if you are drinking have a great time but please take care and drink responsibly! 

Did you like these cocktail recipes? What are some of your favourite cocktails?

Not a sponsored post.

As the Winter Solstice is so close I thought I would share with you some of the traditions me and my family have for this special day. Midwinter is our most important celebration in my family and it is the time we all get together so it's always a lovely time of year for me.

Preparations like buying food, drink and presents will have started quite a while ago but I'll bring it to about a week before the day. So we will be baking, finishing up any homemade alcohol that is ready, there's two barrels of apple ale and my bottle of hedgerow vodka on the go while I'm writing this. We will go out a few days before the solstice and collect holly and ivy for the decorations. We don't buy a tree, we did use to but having a full tree in our house for the sole purpose of leaving it to die seemed wrong to us especially as our celebrations focus a lot on nature. Instead my Dad made a tree for us out of felled wood so instead we bring that down from the attic and fix it up a bit. Dan and I will have started our tradition of reading one stave each night of A Christmas Carol (my favourite book) to each other so that we read the last one on the night before the solstice. 

On the day before the Solstice my Dad will be in the kitchen doing the preparations for the big lunch next day. So I will pop on some Christmas music (much to my Dad's despair but hey it's my guilty pleasure) and I will spend most of the day decorating the front room with the holly and ivy that we collected, fairy lights and candles. 

Once the decorations are all finished with and the evening comes round we will have dinner which has become a tradition of having pizza and we will watch our first Christmas movie. It will be either the Nightmare Before Christmas or A Muppet Christmas Carol (then we will watch either one as our second movie). When we put on the second film we have one of my favourite traditions of having hot chocolate with cream and marshmallows. After the second film my Dad will bring out his gin punch which we all have a glass of while watching the 1971 animated version of A Christmas Carol starring Alastair Sim, if you haven't watched it you can find it on youtube here. It's a masterpiece and you should definitely watch it! Then we all go off to bed but like the child I am I am always too excited so I don't sleep well. 

We wake up very early on the morning of the solstice and go for a drive up to the woods nearby and climb up to the pulpit to watch the sun rise, well I say watch the sun rise, it seems it's tradition for it to be too cloudy to see the sun. But the walk is just as special regardless. When we arrive home we crack open the Buck's Fizz and open a few presents,when we were younger it was tradition for my brother and I to argue with my mum about having a breakfast, she always wanted us to have one but D and I would refuse point black. It was up to my Dad to point out to my mum that we would be stuffing our faces later and not to worry. 

At lunch we have the biggest roast dinner that man has ever known, we all sit around the table eating, drinking and laughing and generally having a great time. We will make toasts to anything happy that may have happened during the year, or to anyone we may have lost. We pull crackers, eat pudding, then put the table away. Afterwards we sit around full of food, opening gifts, playing cards, watching films and just being happy in each other's company. 

For the days following we generally eat too much, drink too much , play games, watch films and have a nice time. Celebrating the Solstice instead of Christmas gets me a lot of weird looks and off comments but in actually how we celebrate is not that much different. 

So no matter what you celebrate or don't celebrate I hope winter brings you all the best, happiness, love and peace and I'll see you again in the new year!! 

Merry Midwinter!! 

With so many people turning to witchcraft I thought I would share some tips with those just starting out on their path. I am in no way an expert but these are some of the things I have learnt from my experience.

Social media is a great thing but it can makes us compare our lives. If you follow a lot of witches on social media then you'll see a lot of how they practice, how they dress, how they live and it's easy to start thinking that's how it should be done. But it's not. Not because those witches are wrong, it is that there is no right or wrong way of practising witchcraft. Follow your own path and learn what it is right for you. You may get certain witches acting like they are authority on witchcraft and that their way is the only way, as hard as it can be just ignore this and carry on learning and growing and finding your own way.

You will get a lot of questions and a lot of misconceptions thrown at you. When a friend found out I was pagan, let alone a witch she said "oh. Those are the ones who sacrifice chickens aren't they?" You will get a lot of people asking you about orgies, devil worship and ritual sacrifice. You will always get a lot people (including some narrow minded witches, sadly) saying that your only reason for becoming a witch is to mimic shows like Sabrina or Charmed or that you just want a witch aesthetic or that you're "just doing it for the 'gram". You will have to put up with remarks like these but just remember you don't have to prove yourself or your path to anyone else no matter how seasoned a witch they may be.

You may very well be tempted to buy every cool looking tool under the sun but you don't need a load of tools especially when you are first starting. You also don't have to spend a lot of money, making do, to me, is a big part of being a witch. You can make many of your own tools yourself which makes the experience fun and a lot more personal. Why not grow your own herbs? Make your own wand? Make your own candles?

If you feel that you don't fit the "witch aesthetic" don't worry. You don't have to live in black, wear long dresses and loads of silver jewellery to be a witch. You could live in Jeans and a T-Shirt it doesn't make you and your craft any less valid. On the flip side you can live in black, wear long dresses and loads of silver jewellery and it doesn't make you a cliche. Just do you.

Do your research. Witchcraft is such broad subject so make sure you do your research, read, watch videos, listen to podcasts get as much information as you can. It's better to have more information so you can use it when practising your own craft and deciding what type of witch you want to be. Just remember that witchcraft is such a wide subject and much of it was either lost or never written down so you will never know everything there is to know.

Those are some tips that I feel will help any fledgling witch, I hope you found them useful. Good luck to anyone who may be starting out on their witch path. 

What tips would you give to a fledgling witch?  

Stockings are such a great part of the holidays but it can be hard to find gifts for them that are fairly priced, not massed produced by a huge company, use tonnes of plastic and that are things that people would actually want. So today I am going to share some stocking ideas that are from small independent businesses. 

Candles from TheFoxAndCandle 
OK candles may seem a bit obvious as a gift but hear me out, these aren't just plain candles. These are some of the prettiest candles I have ever seen. They are each given a magical purpose so this would make the perfect gift for anyone but especially the witch in your life. My personal favourite is the Sea Foam candle but if I could work my will I would have them all. 

Artwork from BroomClosetStore
I recently discovered Danielle's shop through instagram and I fell in love with her art style. My personal favourite is her Sage Under the Stars print. It's just too pretty!

Handmade crafts from FHAF (Fat Hen and Flo)
I discovered this shop at an Etsy market, I was walking past and noticed this Jeremy Corbyn tote bag. A few seconds later I had snapped it up as I knew that my mum would love it, I can't wait to see her face. The shop has so many different items from sew your own characters to soft dolls. They would make the perfect stocking presents. 

Bath Magick from wiccatree
I had to include my own etsy shop in this list as I love my products and think they would make wonderful stocking fillers. All my products are vegan and cruelty free and each item is blessed with it's own magical intent both while making and once the product is finished. We sell balms, bath infusions and bath imbuements so you'll be able to find something ideal no matter who you are shopping for. And for this whole week (3rd December- 9th December) we are offering 20% off and free shipping with all orders over £10!!!

Enamel Pins from Milk and Moon
Enamel pins make great stocking fillers and the ones from Milk and Moon are just gorgeous! They have a great female empowerment message which makes them ideal gifts for all the awesome women in your life. It's so hard to pick a favourite item but if I had to I would say this boob pin. The shop also sells t shirts, totes, jewellery and more so make sure you check it out.


Jewellery from Lois Gunn 
So there are loads of great items on this shop from art prints to stationary but what really catches my eye is the jewellery. It's really unique and bright which we all know at least one person who that is like, so why not treat them to some jewellery that is as fun as they are? I love these bauble earrings they are so cute and perfect for the holidays. 

Affirmation Cards from DreamyMoons
By far not the only thing sold on DreamyMoons (there is also art prints, pillowcases and postcards) but these are the items that stood out to me as they are just so beautiful! They may be a little pricey for a stocking present so you may want to make them into someone's main gift. But they are perfect for any witch in your life. 

So there are some stocking filler ideas from independent businesses. I really encourage you to shop with smaller businesses over the holidays as each thing you buy actually goes to the maker and gives them a huge smile! 

This post was not sponsored!