16 More Baking & Shopping Days ‘Til Christmas – Cookies, Cocktails + More

Today on Weekend Meanderings holiday cookies, cocktails, and perfectly practical presents.

Welcome friends!

It’s Saturday and I’m joining Kim and Elizabeth for our weekend roundup.

All manner of inspiration and goings on.

This article includes affiliate links; if you click on a shopping link and make a purchase I may receive a commission. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Holiday coffee mug sitting on kitchen counter next to topiary.

Last weekend Jim and I got back to basics with a martini and spritzer night.

Martini and wine spritzer on bar alongside Ivy Cove cocktail shaker and bottle opener.

Our beautiful wreath from Branches & Bloom is finally on the front door.

Holiday wreath on front door.

The Army Navy Game kicks off today at noon (pacific) in Foxborough at Gillette Stadium.

Overhead shot of aircraft carrier spelling out Go Navy Beat Army.


Earlier this week Elizabeth organized a virtual holiday cookie exchange. I wish it had been in person because all the cookie recipes look so darned good. If you haven’t read it yet start here with my Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookie recipe and follow the links to all my friend’s holiday cookie ideas.

Tiered tray filled with holiday cookies on table next to cuppa tea with Christmas tree in background.


Last weekend niece Shelby and friend Ashlyn came over for a holiday cocktail night. The girls were excited to put our Bartesian Cocktail Maker into action and test some holiday cocktails. In preparation for their arrival I ordered several of holiday appropriate glass rimmers like Cranberry Cheer and Candy Cane. And I also had fun garnishes on hand like cinnamon sticks, herb sprigs, cherries, citrus peels and candy canes.

Two women with holiday drinks in their hands.

The girls got the hang of the machine pretty quickly. Although it took Shelby a couple of tries to understand that a glass, or cocktail shaker, MUST be placed on the mat BEFORE pressing start. Insert eye roll.

Bartesian cocktail maker and four holiday cocktails.

Clausmopolitan, Peary Christmas, Grinch Appleton, Mistletoe Margarita

If I’m being completely honest, Jim and I aren’t wild about the holiday cocktails although they are extremely pretty and festive. As is typical in any restaurant or bar, holiday themed drinks tend to be on the sweeter side and that’s not for us. However, the younger palettes among us did enjoy the holiday libations. Jim and I are sticking to the classic cocktails which we love.



Around this time last year I shared this delicious Cara Cara Winter Spritz recipe. Have you seen Cara Cara oranges in your market yet?  December through April is generally the season, but last year it was a bit delayed. Anyway, these Spritz’ are so good and you can make them with navel oranges too.

Tray of Cara Cara Orange Winter Spritz drinks on tray.

Cara Cara Winter Spritz

Ina Garten recommended The Sisters Market as her source for Cara Cara’s and other citrus fruits. The Sisters Market is a small family farm in California’s Central Valley, run by you guessed it, three sisters. Last year I mentioned their holiday gift boxes and this year they’re back along with winter navel oranges and sugar bomb persimmons. Take a look at their beautiful gift box options here. I sent them to a few friends last year and they were a big hit. December 18th is the cut off date for delivery by Christmas, but I’d be happy to find a box on my porch after Christmas or in the New Year. I’m intrigued by the Vitamin C, Tea & Chill box!

The Sisters Market


It’s not all cookies and cocktails around here. Someone has to keep the house clean and Rosie the Roomba, our many-years-old robot vacuum abruptly announced her retirement. Truth be told we’ve been eyeing her replacement, the iRobot Roomba j9+, for quite some time. The self-emptying feature is pretty darned enticing. I know what you’re thinking, but come on … it’s the little things in life. Anyway, Jim scoured the internet for the best deal available and we ordered Rosie the Roomba II from Walmart. Amazon offers the same price. Yesterday we thanked Rosie I for her service and welcomed Rosie II to Snowberry. She’s our Christmas gift to each other. I’ve told you before, we are very practical gift givers and generally don’t exchange presents with one another. As Jim likes to say, everyday with me is a gift.

iRobot Roomba j9+.

iRobot Roomba j9+

Rosie resides in the great room and as soon as I leave to take the dogs for their morning walk, she gets to work. If you’ve ever considered an iRobot vacuum (I’m a huge fan) the price is right … right now.


Looking ahead to the New Year, Jim and I have a couple of warm weather vacations on the books. It’s never too early to start pre-packing and my rolling rack is filling up with a things that will be going into my suitcase. Like this Barefoot Dreams caftan I included in my holiday gift ideas. And Ivy Cove’s East West Tote. Ok, the tote won’t be in my suitcase, I’ll be carrying it on the plane, to the beach and everywhere in between. Isn’t it fabulous?!

Ivy Cove is a Southern California based leather goods company. You may have noticed my fun cocktail shaker and bottle opener up above. When Ivy herself reached out and offered to send me a few of her pieces from her collection I said ‘I don’t know, let me think about it.’ Kidding, of course, I said yes. The brand is classic and fun with a preppy twist. Right up my alley. The collection is full of wonderful accessories, home goods, travel essentials for men and women, even pets.

Ivy Cove East West tote sitting on bench next to hat and sunglasses.

The East West Tote is the perfect size for everyday and travel. I did a test run and I was easy able to fit all my plane travel essentials, including my good sized laptop, inside with no problem.

Woman carrying Ivy Cove East West Tote heading out front door.

My future self headed to the Caribbean.

Take a stroll through Ivy Cove’s website and use code SPRITZER20 at checkout for 20% of your order!

Odds & Socks ~

Reminder … December 13th is the last week to order Hood Canal Candle Co.’s winter fragrances.

Hood Canal holiday candle in center of wreath.

Still shopping for gifts? Be sure to consult my better-late-than-never holiday gift ideas.

And that’s what I have for you this week.

Let’s see what’s inspiring Kim and Elizabeth …



If you missed my last post, you can catch up here.

I always love to hear from you, so leave a comment below.

Woman standing on beach under pier.

Cheers from  Snowberry!

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  • Have you tried the Wine Wizard yet? I have heard it ages wine and helps with wine headaches which I get from red wine. I drink mostly white but do enjoy a red but usually with achy results. I’m waiting for a review before I purchase.
    Here’s the link if you’re curious.

    • Deb, I haven’t tried it … but just took a look and it sounds amazing. When Jim gets back from the gym – ha! – I’m going to show it to him. I think we need one! Thanks and happy weekend! xo

  • So many fun ideas here, as always, Juliet! So loved joining you for the cookie exchange! Definitely taking a look at the fruit gift boxes! Have a great week! Cheers!

  • Thank you for introducing me to Ivy Cove’s tote! It looks ideal! And for the promo code. 🙂 Wishing you and your family and festive and love-filled holiday season.

  • Happy weekend Juliet! I loved all the pretty photos with the Cara oranges, and the cocktails look so festive. I have treated myself and ordered the Barefoot Dreams caftan. It looks so cozy and comfy. I realized after I had ordered I forgot to plug in your discount!

    • Karen, you’re going to love the caftan … I might order it one of the other colors too. Sorry, if I wasn’t clear, the discount is for the Ivy Cove website … and Barefoot Dreams isn’t part of that. But back to the caftan, what color did you order?! xo

  • Thank you for alerting me to the Sisters Market. Their boxes are appealing, and after leaving my home state, CA (where we had the world’s best Tangelo tree) to live in the Midwest, finding great citrus is a priority!

    Re. the newer Roombas: we tried one perhaps 14 years ago and in those earlier days, the Roomba would get stuck around bare furniture legs and abrade the surface until the finish was worn away! And our long-haired dog’s hair (ie, not her short fur, her outer hair that continuously grew) would get wound around the feet and was impossible to remove.

    Do the current models manage to avoid damaging furniture legs and painted base boards? I am sure modern versions have vastly improved, and my hubs keeps suggesting getting one!

    • Hi Joan, Sisters Market has the best citrus if you can’t grow it in your backyard. Ina never steers us wrong! Our first Roomba was acquired around 2017 and the kinks must have been worked out. Ours in very gentle around furniture and seems to map the house and no where and where not to go. Our dogs and cat aren’t scared, but steer clear, it’s funny to watch. They shet a lot so I run our Roomba just about everyday. xo

  • Juliet love your home it looks so pretty! The wreath is amazing. Mine fell apart and I need a new one already!
    I just adored the Sisters Box you sent last year. It may have been my favorite gift! The tote is also gorgeous. I chatted with her too. Love California companies! It’s very you that bag. I need that Roomba. Maybe I should put on the list. Shelby and her friend are lovely!! I bet that machine is a hit with the young people too. Hope your weekend is great. xo

  • I made your cookies yesterday. Oh, my gosh, they are delicous! I love shortbread anyway and these are lovely. Thank you for sharing this recipe.

  • Juliet,
    Good evening! Love your wreath, simple, beautiful and perfect for not only Christmas but maybe all of winter.
    How fun to have your niece and friend over for cocktails! My favorite cocktail is cranberry, lime juice and vodka, it’s a Blush Lily I believe. Whatever it is they serve it at the Kentucky Oaks and it is refreshing.
    The cookie exchange was lots of fun. I love trying new recipes and cannot wait to make all of the cookies.
    Love the cara cara oranges! I had never had one until you introduced them to me last year. I agree with Kim, my favorite gift.
    Have a wonderful weekend Juliet!
    xo Elizabeth

  • I’ve been buying Barefoot Dreams for gifts for everyone lately. MIL, SILs, mom, people who have their own personal styles but all like the coziness and might not buy for themselves.
    This year all the “girls” are getting Lululemon belt bags in different fabrics (Sherpa, sporty, new quilted glam one!)
    We had a great family friend for years who used to buy everyone in the family, regardless of gender or age, the same thing! I have such fond memories of holidays with them. Tennis shoes, gold chains, cases of wine, tickets to museums, car washes for a year, etc. It was very creative AND efficient and everyone looked forward to it like nothing else!

    • Valletta, I’m excited for all the gals on your gift list! That sherpa Everywhere bag is something I’d love to find under the tree. And, yes, to Barefoot Dreams, wonderful cozy gifts that suit everyone. Thanks for sharing your holiday memories. Merry Christmas! xo

  • Hi, I’m Juliet … welcome to Make Mine a Spritzer where we talk about all things home décor, classic style and more! I’m so happy you’re here!

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