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Awesome Halloween Costumes, but the Speeder Bike is the Real Hero!

Took the day off for some Halloween fun, but here was one of the coolest things I saw online yesterday:

speeder

They even made a video!

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Stranger Things: Season 2 is Here – Have a Last Minute Binge Party!

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WOO HOO!

Anyone who loved the first season of Stranger Things knows that Season Two was released on Netflix today!  I’ve been reminded of this about 3 times a week for several weeks now by my son, who watched the first season at least 10 times.  So what is the only rational thing to do on an occasion such as this?  Throw a last minute binge party!

Being last minute means not a lot of time to prepare, create, sew, draw, etc.  And the point is that you are watching the actual SHOW, not spending hours preparing for a typical social event.  So for this, let’s stick with the bare bones ideas: snacks, drinks and a comfy place to watch the show for several hours.

SNACKS:

Ok folks let’s get real.  This is no time learn how to make – or hire a professional cookie maker to create – wonderful treats like these no matter how awesome they are:

STcookies

These are great, but mine would look like a hot mess or cost me $400 to have made. MOVING ON! (PS: Will happily give credit to whoever created these but I can’t find original source)

So what will you serve your fellow Stranger Things Fanatics?  A quick trip to the store can net plenty of great snacks that were available back in the last 1970s-early 1980s, so stick with those!  Starting with:

eggo

EGGOS, of course!  Create a waffle bar, where people can toast up some Eggos and create their own fun treats!  Topping could include:

  • chocolate chips
  • berries
  • whipped cream/Cool Whip
  • peanut butter
  • caramel syrup
  • ice cream
  • sprinkles

But check it out, even Eggo is getting into the Stranger Things action, go to their website and download a 1984 label you can put on a modern box!

Of course one cannot live on Eggos alone, so you could also grab some:

  • Pop Rocks
  • Twinkies
  • Devil Dogs
  • Jello Pudding Pops
  • pretzels
  • Doritos!

DRINKS:

Of course you have to have drinks you can get today that were around in the early 80s, but if you can grab a couple of pitchers (Tupperware pitchers get bonus points!), then fill them with Hi-C fruit drinks (add vodka or rum to make them even better!) – if you’re feeling creative, do something like this:

STdrinks

Love this! Also can’t find who to credit for this idea either, but they rock!

If you want some sodas, pick up some:

  • TAB (classic!)
  • 7-Up
  • Coke
  • Pepsi… if you can find any “Crystal” versions, I bow to you!
  • (add vodka or rum to make your sodas even better!)

DECORATIONS:

Now is not the time for overly fancy decorations, but if you want a quick and easy project that shouldn’t take too long, just do this:

  • From the store: grab a huge black Sharpie marker, a plain white shower curtain or plastic table cloth and a set of Christmas lights (if you don’t already have some at home, you KNOW the stores are already putting that stuff out)
  • At home: Tape the curtain to your wall and string up the lights in 3 rows.  Then under each light, draw out each letter, like so:
STlights

Bonus points for finding a shower curtain that matches her wallpaper!

 

THAT’S IT!  That’s all you need to make a great party with minimal effort and maximum fun while you watch the new season with your best mates.  Now… RUN!

WoW: I Got a Cat!

Kai1

UGH, you feed them ONCE….

For anyone who is not already well aware, I play World of Warcraft. I play a lot, I take some breaks (sometimes for years), then wander on back.

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This Wandering Rogue actually plays a rogue in WoW, and they are in the midst of their Hallow’s End celebration – collect enough Tricky Treats and trade them for prizes. It’s an event designed to break up some of the monotony for seasoned players who may be getting a little bored, and while I don’t usually have time to do EVERYTHING an event has to offer, I decided to spend a little time collecting a couple of the more fun items.

Kai2

How does this even work? Who knows, it just DOES!

As you can tell, I traded in my first batch of Tricky Treats for that sweet broom! As a Harry Potter fan, it’s a nice addition to my collection of mounts (aka cars/planes but with cooler looks… check out one of my favorites – an oversized purple cat with ethereal wings to the left!), and I’ve seen more than one suggestion from other players for games of Quiddich. The only downside is that I can only use the broom during the Hallow’s End event (so about 2 weeks each year around Halloween).

But honestly, even more than that, I was excited to trade my second batch for the Feline Familiar, which as you can tell sports an adorable pointy witch hat. When standing on the ground, it follows you around like any other cat, but unlike most other companions, when you are mounted up, the Familiar ALSO mounts up on it’s own little broom and zooms after you while you fly!  Again, the downside is the broom is only seen during the Hallow’s End events.

But for now I will enjoy zipping around on my pseudo-Firebolt with my adorable little kitty pal while I can!

5 Easy Harry Potter Drinks

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We are in the midst of two of my favorite topics – Halloween and Harry Potter celebrations!  There has been a surge of town-wide Harry Potter Days where businesses will specialize in all things HP (like this one for 10/28/17 🙂 ), and it’s the perfect time of year to do it.  Hopefully all you fellow PottHeads have one nearby?

Even if you don’t, you can still join the fun! I’ve compiled a short list of my favorite Harry Potter inspired drinks you can toast your favorite characters with.

But here was the challenge… finding recipes that not only tasted good and reminded me of specific HP characters or places, but also didn’t call for hard-to-find or bizarre ingredients (I found this drink, which uses squid ink – bless that mixologist, but…NO.) – there is nothing more frustrating than buying a bottle of liquor I’ve never heard of, to create a drink using only 1oz of it, only to realize I hate the taste and will never use it again.

Oh, and if you’re looking for a cool Harry Potter glass or mug to hold your concoction, I’ve posted a few at the bottom you may want to check out!

That said, let’s move on to the drinks!

VERY Low Calorie Butterbeer!

Glasses_of_ButterbeerI’ve been to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Florida, and I was lucky enough to get to the Harry Potter Studio Tour in London.  The Butterbeer served is DELICIOUS, but will give you sugar shock! I needed to find a way to make it lower in sugar and calories, but also simple enough that I won’t blow too much money.

First, the non-alcoholic recipe (keep the kids happy!):

  • 12 oz of Diet Cream Soda
  • 1 T of Imitation Butterscotch Extract
  • Cool Whip
  • Drizzle of Walden Farms Calorie Free Caramel Syrup (usually found near the ice cream toppings)

Start with the Butterscotch Extract and then add the Cream Soda to mix, top with some Cool Whip and let it get a little “relaxed” to look like beer froth.  Drizzle a bit of the Caramel Syrup on top and you’re good to go!

Now for the ADULT version:

  • 12 oz of Diet Cream Soda
  • 1-2oz of Butterscotch Schnapps (to taste)
  • Cool Whip
  • Drizzle of Walden Farms Calorie Free Caramel Syrup (usually found near the ice cream toppings)

Start with the Butterscotch Schnapps and then add the Cream Soda to mix, top with some Cool Whip and let it get a little “relaxed” to look like beer froth.  Drizzle a bit of the Caramel Syrup on top and you’re on your way to a lower-calorie drink.  Accio Butterbeer!!!

Photo credit to harrypotter.wikia.com

The Half-Blood Prince Potion

By now you should know that our favorite potions master was also a master of manipulation and lies – for the good!  In honor of Severus Snape’s ability to hide the light within the dark, I present one of the most gorgeous drinks I’ve ever seen!  With it’s lime flavoring (green for Slytherin!), black color and silvery sparkles when you swirl it, you will look more than ready to take your NEWT level Potions exams!

  • 2.5 ounces Black Vodka
  • 3/4 ounce Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice (2/3 – 1 Small Lime)
  • 1/2 ounce Simple Syrup
  • Ice
  • Wilton Edible Pearl Dust in White (Find at craft store in baking aisle or HERE on Amazon)

Instructions:

Into a cocktail shaker add in your simple syrup, lime juice, and black vodka. Fill with ice until the liquid line. Give it a hard shake for 30 seconds. Add a dash of pearl dust to the bottom of a martini or coupe glass. Pour cocktail into your glass and serve. Add more pearl dust if it’s not shimmery enough and stir it with a bar spoon to combine it.

Photo and drink recipe credit to elletalk.com!

The Order of the Phoenix

OrderofPhoenixIn searching for a recipe to honor the many fierce and determined witches and wizards – many of whom perished fighting You-Know-Who and the Death Eaters, I found this drink to pack the right punch!  Don’t consume too many of these, or it’s a trip straight to St. Mungo’s Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries!

  • 1 oz Vodka
  • 1 oz Triple Sec
  • 1 oz. Blue Curacao
  • Lime juice to taste
  • Black Sanding Sugar for coating the glass
Instructions:
Pour equal portions of the alcohol into a shaker over cracked ice. Shake, then strain into a chilled martini glass that has been rimmed with black sugar.
Photo and basic recipe from RecipesJust4U.com, tweaked by me.

The Goblet of Fire!

GobletofFireThis one is a FUN one to make AND to look at!  I found several recipes out there with similar ingredients and think this one is the best. Astound your friends with your potion skills with this one and sip while reminiscing on the past Tri-Wizard Tournament Champions!
  • 1 1/2 ounce blue curaçao
  • 1 ounce orange-flavored vodka
  • 1/2 cup orange-flavored sparkling water
  • 1/2 ounce 151 proof rum
  • Cinnamon

Instructions:

 

In a goblet, pour the blue curaçao, vodka, and sparkling water.Carefully spoon a layer of rum over the drink. You can also pour the rum over the back of the spoon. Using your wand, cast the fire-making spell to light the drink. If Ollivander’s was closed when you went to buy your wand, you can just use a long-stemmed lighter. If it doesn’t light right away, pour a little more rum on top and try again. Sprinkle with cinnamon to create those sparks. Put out the flame by blowing on it or covering the drink with a plate before drinking.
Photo and recipe from Spoon University.

The Hogsmeade Special!

Organic Apple Cider with CinnamonWhen strolling down the street in Hogsmeade during the height of snow season, despite the warmth of your Hogwarts cloak, the only thing you want is something toasty to sip next to the fire.  This super-simple recipe is great when ice-cold in the summer, but OUTSTANDING in the winter!

Instead of cursing the snow and using your wand to try melt it away, embrace it gratefully with this drink in hand. Honestly, I don’t think I could have made this recipe any easier unless it was literally already bottled at the Hog’s Head ready for pickup!

  • Apple Cider
  • Honey Mead
  • Cinnamon stick (or a few sprinkles of ground cinnamon)

Instructions:

Mix one part each in your favorite mug, heat to preferred temperature in the microwave or in a small pot on the stove, add cinnamon stick (or ground cinnamon) and ENJOY!

Need a special drinking cup for your favorite recipe?  Check these out!



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