Tuesday, February 5, 2013

living dangerously

I’m approaching one full year of trying to conceive. One full year in which, for the most part, I’ve lived like a nun. No drinking, no needle drugs[1], plenty of exercise, vegetarian diet, sex on schedule. Well, it’s time to get real. I’ve been at this almost a year and if I’m honest with myself, I know it might take yet another year[2] to make this happen.

So today I am making a decision. I’m sick of living like a prohibitionist (aside: I must not be the only one engaging in this illogical behavior?). Because I’ve been a vegetarian for 10 years and exercise is therapy-on-the-cheap, those things won’t change. And fine, if I’m being honest, exclusively-scheduled-sex ended long ago – cannot celebrate enough the benefits of spontaneity.

But about the drinking: I’ve never been a heavy drinker but, it turns out (deep insight here), a social beverage now and again is actually pretty great. Wine with dinner? Cocktail after a tough day? An eye-opener first thing in the morning? A beer with the game (who am I kidding, I don’t watch any sort of “game”)?

I have no idea why I’ve been so incomprehensibly paranoid about drinking – even on days when I literally could not be pregnant, I still refrain. (The arm-chair psychologist who lives in the back of my head suggests that it’s my way of “taking control” in a situation where I basically have none. Whatever.).

The point is, I’m willing to cop to my irrational behavior because C has gotten into making some excellent, winter-citrus-inspired cocktails and damnit, I’ve had enough of being a teetotaler. Not to mention that every drink politely declined in mixed company – combined with the ohmygod-Clomid-bloating-weight – becomes further proof to my in-the-dark friends that I must be pregnant. Which, while kind of entertaining, is really just sad – boy will they be disappointed in 9 months.

There’s also this, helpfully pointed out by a very insightful friend: because I am *cough* brave and, ahem, strong, I remained (relatively) emotionally stable during a week in which I both recovered from a chemical pregnancy AND confronted the end of 30 Rock.[3] So I’m drinking. Because I earned it.

Without further adieu, the drink that makes drinking again much more worthwhile (after the jump).

Rosemary Infused Blood Orange Cocktail[4]

(the drink was pretty, too)

We get really into winter citrus around here. Oranges, blood oranges, pomelos, tangerines, grapefruits, clementines. As the family mixologist (that’s a thing, right?), C recently put together this little number. Before then, we had never “infused” anything – let alone a cocktail. But don’t be scared. It’s deceptively easy and the result is a refreshing, sparkly, shock to the system.

(Adapted slightly from 101cookbooks)

[For rosemary infused syrup]
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
1 heaping Tbsp. fresh rosemary leaves
3 Tbsp. gin
3 Tbsp. fresh squeezed and strained blood orange juice
1-2 tsp. rosemary syrup
sparkling water (we used lemon-lime Poland Spring)

To make the syrup, put the sugar, water and rosemary leaves in a small pot. Simmer the mixture for about 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and let it infuse about ten more minutes. Strain the mixture and set aside.
Fill a tall glass three quarters of the way with ice cubes. Add the gin, fresh juice, rosemary syrup and top it off with the sparkling water. Garnish with a thin slice of blood orange.

[1] Totally kidding, mom.
[2] What’s that, you say it could take several years? No thank you. I am not yet ready to confront that potential reality.
[3] The end of 30 Rock means other, more personal things for this author. No less than two TSA agents, one remedial-puppy-school teacher, one law school professor and several close friends and family members have said I look just a touch like Tina Fey (uh, this version?). But without Tina gracing the airwaves on the weekly, how will anyone know that I, anonymous lawyer-blogger, look like comedic royalty? Devastating self-absorbed is the word that comes to mind.
[4] Thoughts about these recipes? Are they interesting? Worthwhile? Confusingly unrelated to the rest of this blog? Your candid feedback is welcome. No, really.


  1. hahahahaha. What a well-timed post! You KNOW how I feel about it. Drink up and Cheers to us!

  2. Oh, and the recipe sounds amaaaazing :)

  3. The cocktail recipe made my mouth water. And it's 8:45 am. Ah, a perk to being unemployed (or as I like to say, employed by looking for employment) I can (could) drink at 8:45 am and don't have to answer to no body!

    Drink up, sister, you HAVE earned it!

  4. You gotta keep keepin' on, and sometimes that includes a few alcoholic beverages (or in my case, a lot). One thing I keep trying to remind myself is that as much as we want a baby, it would be a shame to waste this fun "non-kid" phase worrying about the next phase, when in reality this phase has some mega-awesome perks as well. Easier said than done, obvi. In other news, I *should* lay off the girl scout cookies. . .

  5. Thanks for the feedback ya'll - I should have mentioned that this beverage is so good, it's probably an any-time-of-day kind of thing. So, bottoms up.

    Anyway, I also realized, in reading this again, that this makes me sound like a total health saint - which I am most certainly not. Just so no one's in the dark about this, so far today, I've had a bag of swedish fish, a giant cookie and frozen yogurt. And the night is still young. Now if only I could get my hands on some girl scout cookies...