Spiced Sparkling Cranberry Punch
This Spiced Sparkling Cranberry Punch with star anise and cinnamon will make you the life of every holiday party this season!
This past weekend was Canadian Thanksgiving, and we changed up our family tradition by driving to the cottage for a little bit of R & R. I have to admit, it's a pretty beautiful drive up to the Muskoka region of northern Ontario.
The vibrant colours of the changing leaves and escaping the Internet make the four hour drive totally worth it – even if it's only for just a couple of days 😉
Besides all the excuses to dress up in fall flannels and giant, oversized sweaters paired with the perfect shade of burgundy lipstick, October is probably my favourite month of the year because it's a beautiful time of change.
There is something about the smokey smell of fires in the air that seriously gets me excited to spend more time outside. And when you've had your fill of the fresh outdoor air, there's nothing better to me than sneaking inside to have a glass of Mulled Apple Cider Sangria, or this Sparkling Cranberry Punch of course, while chopping up some delicious fall root vegetables and prepping for a giant feast.
This weekend, since it was just the four of us, we scaled back on a giant turkey and made up a series of smaller sides to pair with a couple stuffed turkey breasts. I'm talking tons of squash, a potato casserole to die for (I'll share the recipe in November!), along with some charcuterie, brussels sprouts and this amazing carrot-rutabaga mash, also coming soon to the blog.
It was quite literally a perfectly quintessential fall affair!
I think I've become so busy lately that it's been therapeutic and necessary to clear my head every once in a while.
Am I the only one who feels guilty sometimes taking a whole weekend off work?
I'm having such a difficult transition between being a professional woman and living life as a student with a series of part time jobs – I'm so used to being on all the time and working on something that it's been difficult to unplug.
Right now, I'm in the process of taking more professional photos of people in order to gain experience with wedding and portrait photography, and I'm constantly hunting for new ideas to pitch to a variety of publications as I'm trying to increase my freelance work and diversify my income. Nobody said that owning your own business would be easy!
And while becoming a budding businesswoman is something I'm super grateful for this year, I'm constantly trying to separate my professional goals and personal life in an attempt to be a little bit more balanced.
Suffice it to say, I'm quite the workaholic, and sometimes don't let myself have as much fun as I should be for somebody my age. Whenever I'm stressed out though, there's nothing a little fall run can't fix.
And yes, I'm a runner – it's a big part of the way I manage my stress! I'm just not looking forward to the winter months because I'll be turning into more of a hot yoga connoisseur and more of a professional movie watcher when it gets too cold.
But I digress.
If you're looking to see more of my day-to-day adventures, we should probably be friends on Snapchat. I'm thegirlonbloor on there – come say hi! 🙂
In the meantime, will you be making this Spiced Sparkling Cranberry Punch? What are you grateful for this year?
Spiced Sparkling Cranberry Punch
- 2 cups sparkling water divided
- 1 cup cranberry juice divided, recipe below
- 4 oz vodka divided
- 1 lime quartered
- Star anise sugared cranberries, fresh thyme and cinnamon sticks for garnish
Homemade Cranberry Juice
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups cranberries
- 1 Star anise
- 1 clove
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1/2 cup cranberries
- sugar for tossing
- In a large saucepan, heat 2 cups water and 1 cup cranberries to a boil. Cover and let simmer 20 min, adding star anise, cinnamon stick and clove in halfway through.
- Meanwhile, toss cranberries in sugar then skewer onto toothpicks.
- Remove star anise, cinnamon stick and clove. Strain cranberries through a fine mesh sieve until all liquid is squeezed out. Pour juice back into saucepan, then stir in sugar, orange juice and lemon juice.
- Garnish four cocktail glasses with ice, sugared cranberry toothpicks, star anise, thyme and cinnamon sticks.
- Add 1/2 cup sparkling water to each glass, then add 1/4 cup cranberry juice and 1 oz vodka to each glass. Add a spritz of lime before serving - enjoy!