Thursday, October 5, 2017

Bourbon Ambassador

That time I became a Makers Mark Bourbon Ambassador.
 If you follow the Kentucky bourbon trail, you will get a chance to taste bourbons at the Makers Mark Distillery. Not only can you taste and wander the beautiful campus but also you can sign up to be an Ambassador. Therefore, I did. It’s very easy as long as you are over 21 years of age. You can sign up on the iPad kiosk they have in the ticket office. What do you get as ambassador? Swag but the coolest is the plaque with your name on it that is assigned to a barrel. When it comes of age, you can order bottles from you barrel. How cool is that?       
We are lucky enough to live a short (well it’s an 8 hour drive) drive to Kentucky. We took advantage of that and decided to go on the Bourbon trail tour. Makers Mark had a Chihuly Glass exhibition and a dinner paring. And of course who doesn’t want Art, food and bourbon.
Our day started at Roses then on to Wild Turkey,  Woodford Reserve was next where we had lunch on the grounds before the tour and tasting. The last stop for the day was dinner at Makers Mark. 

Three fabulous courses paired with bourbon cocktails. We had a cocktail made with cask strength bourbon (cask strength means WOW thats strong). It was the best Old Fashioned I’ve ever had and it could knock you off your feet. The meal consisted of quail salad, chicken on a bed of creamed corn and then bread pudding. The pre-dinner cocktail was a bourbon slushy of sorts. Bourbon, Ale 8 and a little bourbon cherry liqueur at the bottom. What a way to start the dinner. 

After dinner you were free to wander the grounds, all the buildings were open. If you were lucky, you could get a sample of sour mash (the hubby actually got to taste it). In the gift shop if you can dip your own bottles, glasses, hats cookie cutters and just about anything, you wish. They make nice souvenirs. 
 As the sun was fading, the distillery turned off the lights and lit up the Chilhuly glass. WOW! It was beautiful. Reds and yellow oranges, Blues and clear glass on one. A boat full of colorful glass, red glass baskets in the quiet of the distilling room. But most of all was the ceilings that he is famous for. Four cherubs that were hiding and you needed to find them.  

Art, food and bourbon do you need anything more.        

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Fall adventure begins

Well, it's finally here. We are off on our big fall adventure. A two week European cruise. It has been two years in the planning and dreaming stages and now we are off. 
Do you rely on internet for your sightseeing information? Me? Well I am still old school and buy travel books. My favorite for traveling are these small pop out maps. They are compact and easy to carry around and use and they are just fun to make pop up. Then once you are done with them, they make great souvenirs.  

I also am a light packer. Once I only used a carry on for two weeks in Scotland and France. We usually travel with just a carry on and a personal bag. But for some reason we are going to be checking a big bag. Granted it is for both of us and it is two weeks of traveling. We really tried to pair things down. And I’m sure when we get back we will come to the realization that we over packed as cruisers tend to do.
How do you pack? Rolling method, packing cubes, the folding method? This time I incorporated all those in to the one big suitcase for both of us.   

On to the adventure. Spain, Portugal, Canary Islands, Morocco and finally a stop in Normandy.   We will walk through history on the beaches of Normandy and I will get to see the Bayeux Tapestry, finally. Lots of Monasteries in Spain, the beaches of the Canary Islands and of course the food in Lisbon. Oh, the food of Lisbon. I am looking forward to stuffing  my face with pastries, seafood and whatever else I can find as we wind our way through Lisbon.  
Most of all this two weeks is to unwind. No internet, no phones and no social media (well maybe occasionally I'll post a picture), just sun and fun. Any internet access will be found in cafes or at the cruise ports.  You can usually spot those cruisers that don't purchase internet access huddled around Wifi hot spots in port, like campers around the fire in winter. 
See you on the other side!

Thursday, September 29, 2016

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Many of you participate in 3 day walks, Breast fests, fundraisers or some other event, me, I bake in support of Breast Cancer awareness month.
With the statistics of 1 in 8 women affected by breast cancer, I didn't just want to repost my story about my friend and co-worker, Gwen Leighty, who lost her battle with disease. I wanted to remember and pay tribute to her once again.
Gwen was a real go getter at work. She always seemed to be on mission and I guess she was as our chief fundraiser. Always on the job to find the next be donor. She was still fundraiser and working when she could during her fight. She was always looking out for the staff. When we needed funds for a staff event she was right there asking what we needed. Never hesitating to make sure we had what we needed.
One fall before her untimely death, she gave me some antique gardening books and tubers of irises from her garden. The irises were planted right away and the next spring bloomed in to the softest shade of a bluish violet. The books are still on my shelves and the irises are still thriving. When they bloom in the spring and as I pass them in the yard I smile and  think fondly of a friend and dear co-worker.

So these cupcakes are for everyone who has been touched by this disease. They are the copycat of Hostess cupcakes and I'll blog about that latter this month.