“Count your blessings instead of sheep” – Rosemary Clooney sang this Irving Berlin song in the movie White Christmas. In the hustle and bustle and yes, stress of the holiday season, this is great advice.
So often we lay in bed worrying about packages arriving, money spent, who should sit next to who at Christmas dinner and whether Great Aunt Betty will forget to add the sugar to her cookies again.
Wouldn’t counting your blessings be a better routine after you crawl into bed?
1)Thank you for the giggles I shared with my daughter today.
2) Thank you for Taco Tuesday with family.
The holiday season is traditionally a time for gatherings with family and friends, this year was no exception in my home, (MB). My brother and sister-in-law provided our Thanksgiving meal at their home leaving me free to do something new on the Friday after.
Root Beer has always been a family favorite, to the point where some family members feel they can name the root beer brand with just a taste. In addition, we had a week-end guest who loved root beer.
The perfect combination to put together a root beer tasting party!
My criteria for root beer to make the cut was simple. It had to be in a glass bottle. While some would be old favorites, A&W, Dad’s, IBC; the rest would be unknown to me. I couldn’t be sure what my connoisseur had tried, so I simply picked up every brand I found.
A couple of the root beers came from the traditional grocery stores, in addition, I stopped in at our local ice cream and sweets shop for lesser know brands, Scrumptious, (if you ever have a chance to try their home-made ice cream, DO!), I explained what I was doing so along with the brands they had in the cooler, they found a new arrival in back. He also had 2 different types of root beer candy for my centerpiece. Thank you for your efforts on our behalf! World Market had a good selection of lesser known brands too.
I was unable to find A&W in glass bottles but it wouldn’t be a true root beer tasting without that fan favorite, so I settled for the plastic bottle. Barq’s was the only root beer that I could not find anywhere. In total, I ended up with 12 different brands of root beer.
I then began searching for small root beer mugs, something in the shot glass range. I found them at Party City. These I put in the freezer, root beer must be served in a frosted mug, right?
The actual tasting would be done in 3 flights of 4 each. I covered the labels, this would be a blind taste test.
Next, I put together a score sheet, covering 4 aspects, Effervescence, Sweetness, Zest, & Bouquet, along with their overall score for each one.
We did a 4th flight with the favorites from the previous flights to determine our winner.
I started the party with 2 songs about Root Beer to set the mood.
George Jones – Root Beer video by hankgwe
Who knew the Beach Boys sang about root beer? video by fatgator46
I made a point of opening the bottles out of sight of my testers. The A&W plastic bottle would be a dead give-away along with the possibility they might see and recognize a bottle cap.
Tasters were allowed to take as much time as they needed with each root beer. Some made their decisions quickly, others were very deliberate.
Comments from the tasters varied on every one.
“Strong Maple flavor”
“This one tastes like black licorice.”
“This one is so bland, now that I’ve tasted the others.”
The five root beers chosen for the final flight based on tester scores; although unknown to the tasters at the time; were: A&W, Dad’s, Dang!, IBC & Bulldog. One taster preferred Virgil’s over the rest but the others felt its anise flavoring was too strong, so Virgil’s did not make the cut.
Who’s #1 on our list? A&W was the hands down winner.
The Root Beers we tasted in addition to the above, were:
We had so much fun with this, we may try a cream soda taste test next!
What’s your favorite root beer? and why?
Here’s to a sweet life!
MaryBeth & Sherry
Ballots in Colorado were mailed out beginning 10/18/16, here’s what we’ve learned so far.
Many voters received more than one ballot in their name, non-citizens received ballots, some are voting twice using stolen ballots.
All of this has been documented in just 7 days.
Is the media reporting it? Some outlets are, but what will state government or the Feds do about it is the bigger question?
Our form of democracy is 238 years old. It’s not a perfect system but it’s pretty darn good. It’s the power of politicians and their cronies that’s pretty darn bad. When faced with corruption or fraud, politicians cry and point their fingers at the opposing political party. Few, if any are willing to address the issue from within their party.
“Off with their heads!” is the unified cry. “It’s the Republicans fault!” is heard from the Democrats side, “It’s the Democrats fault!” is heard from the Republican side. Media chooses a side and provides a slanted report designed to lead the public in the direction they desire. The real problem is that we buy into this.
We, the People, shake our heads in disgust, “those darn Republicans, those darn Democrats!”
We, the People, should focus on the victim, ourselves and our freedoms. We should turn off the media, damage their revenue flow and they’ll change their tune. Media is no longer about honest reporting it’s all about revenue.
Politicians are no longer about serving their constituents, they are concerned with special interests and their personal revenue flow. Stop buying into it and they’ll change their flow.
We, the People, should stop pointing fingers at each other and point right at the problem, the politicians and the media, whose collective power is damaging to us all.
Let it Glow! Glow in the Gardens; Denver Botanic Gardens opened this week and what a fangtastic concept it turned out to be.
Heeding their cries, these sylphs drove on, “after treats and spirits,” we gasped, “we’ll face the specter head on”
Magically full, we crept back once more, now no gremlins blocked the portal of our haunted stroll.
Witch way should we go? Head for the demon, after all, demons are a ghoul’s best friend. (insert groan here). Follow the flow?
No, that way’s blocked by a hundred souls or more. Progress was hauntingly slow, petrify a right towards a boo-tiful pumpkin carriage from fairy tale lore.
Bat’s better, as we creep further into the darkness, luminaries lightening our path. Shadow figures surround us, spooky elves with their blood-curdling screams or little monsters expressing their wraith.
Cascading water casting a spell, luring us with its siren song.
Murky pools, ponds of doom, if you dare enter their gloom.
Mysterious orbs beckon us in, what lies beyond… is entering this labyrinth a grave mistake?
Scaredy-cats! What hides on the other side?
Hocus Pocus! He comes into focus. Dark Knight of Fire! Is it Arthur pulling his sword from the stone, so that he may sit on his underworld throne?
Or does our blazing rogue prepare for a fight?
Disguise’s a Dragon, hell-hound poor knight …
Disillusion of mystical ladies appears, supernatural enchanters are these dears.
What is she raven about? A myth, a fable, an unearthly lout?
Boil and bubble, do we got trouble? Rabid-ly we carrion.
Hex, om-ino-us is a glimmer light, phantom that!
Our ghostess of a hostess bids us farewell, as we grimly depart from our tour of ruin.
Have a devilishly Happy Halloween!
🎃 MaryBeth & Sherry 😈
There is always something going on in my head, but every now and again, I simply can’t find a way to express it.
Has this ever happened to you? What is your method for overcoming this block?
I don’t find it a bad thing, this loss of train of thought. I sit back and wait for the train to come full circle. It always does!
Often, once it pulls back into the station of my mind, I am thinking about it differently, making it easier to put thoughts into words.
So, here I sit here patiently waiting for the train to arrive.
On another note, we will be embarking on a road trip to California shortly, we will be hauling a trailer full of household goods back, and there lies the adventure. Neither of us has pulled a u-haul before! We will be sure to let you know all the fun (read funny) details of our 1000+ miles trip.
Sherry and I thank you for reading, liking and commenting on our blog.
Here’s to a Happy Life!
MaryBeth & Sherry 📝
We found the perfect fall day to visit one of our old haunts.
Olde Town Arvada is about to experience a big changes due to the light rail station. The increase in foot traffic will be great for the businesses. Parking has always been an issue in Olde Town, so the city has opened a new lot near the movie theaters and offers a shuttle to bring you downtown.
We stopped first at a newer pub, Homegrown. They have a nice patio right on main street, it’s a bit noisy with traffic in the afternoon, so we were seated inside near a window. The decor is somewhat industrial with a touch of antlers. It was quite comfortable, the servers were friendly and efficient.
If you want to try a truly delicious appetizer, have the brussel sprouts. They were amazing. We ate every bite, down to the last crumb. Then it was time for a stroll to see what had changed in Olde Town, turns out, quite a bit.
There were a few of the long-time businesses, such as the Arvada Tavern. We’ve eaten here a few times, it’s always good. They did have a Rockabilly group upstairs once in a while, not sure if they still do. As always the Rheinlander Bakery smelled delicious, they are celebrating their 53rd year. We hurried on by as our taste buds were yearning to go inside, but our waistlines said no!
We strolled on down to Arvada Bead Connection, a local favorite where the proprietor is very friendly. Sadly, he is having a going out of business sale. With the changing demographic, the rents are being raised and parking removed which doesn’t appeal to his clientele. MB made sure to scoop up several seed bead tubes for future crafting. We wished him the best and moved on.
Fuzzy’s Tacos across the street is said to be good, we haven’t tried it yet.
There are a growing number of new coffee shops, which we are sure will appeal to early morning commuters. If you want to make your commute really good, drop into the Rheinlander. Hey, you’ll be walking to the light rail, so it’s all good!
Our next stop was Third Eye Gifts, upon entering you feel the warmth of positive energy. The proprietor has several Himalayan Salt Lamps lit and producing negative ions. The negative ones are positive! The smell of incense was not overwhelming, just an added touch.
We asked about the singing bowls and the owner took quite a bit of time to demonstrate them and teach us how they work. We were definitely rookies when he had us try them. I think we’ll be back to purchase one soon. This may be a new favorite shop.
For as chilly as it was, there were still kids in the water park! Located in the center of Old Town, they offer movies here in the summer. During the day, it’s a spot for kids to play while the adults relax on the nearby benches and visit. Near the holidays, a Christmas Tree and other decorations are added. You can also take an old-fashion carriage ride through downtown. We have to admit, this is an improvement on the parking lot that used to sit here.
Schoolhouse Kitchen & Libations is aptly named as it is in the old Arvada School. We’ve heard nothing but rave reviews about this place. We happy to see them re-purposing the old buildings rather than tear them down. It helps to maintain the ambiance.
A local favorite with children of all ages is Scrumptious Ice Cream and their cement pig mascot.
He’s a Superhero today, just a few months ago, he was a hippie, but he’s always good for a kids photo-op. The shop itself offers some unusual and delicious home-made ice cream flavors, dark cherry and bourbon flavors are favorites. Everyday they have something different. On one side of the shop is the ice cream parlor, on the other is an old-fashioned candy store with bottled soda. On a hot evening, this place is packed. Right across the street from the light rail station, they’ll be busy all year-round.
We ran out of time to further explore, and there are so many new shops and restaurants to visit.
If you are in our neck of the woods, be sure to stop by Olde Town Arvada.
Here’s to a Happy Life!
🍁MaryBeth & Sherry 🍂