Summer Vacation is Here! So is the Rain

We had all the “last” days this month. The last day of baseball, the last day of track, the last day of practice and, of course, the last day of school. A load of books and papers that are stored in school all year came home this week.

So it’s time to fire up the grill and start shaking up some cocktails. Well, not exactly.

Yesterday was the last day of school. Today the rain arrived. What timing.

We aren’t going to let the rain dampen our kicking-off-summer spirit. We are breaking out the indoor skillet to make burgers and getting the cocktail shaker out to make mocktails for the guys.

Somewhere along the way we collected several cocktail shakers and the guys get a kick out of watching their drinks being made as we combine different juices and pour our mixed drinks over flavored ice cubes.

We also like to wet the rims of the glasses and dip in a layer of organic sugar on a small plate.

We gather some mint from the garden and they drink the mocktails out of margarita glasses.

We planted citrus mint a few seasons ago and it is exploding right now. The citrus mint is perfect for cool drinks outside in the summer season.

We spent the afternoon making what we call “the summer ice cubes.” That means various fruit juices frozen in trays. They are a must for summer drinks on a hot day. Ice cubes help to keep your drinks cold but as they slowly melt they start to dilute the flavors in your drinks.

Instead, try using the inevitable melting process to slowly add more flavor by using ice cubes made with fruit juices. This way every last drop of your drinks have the most flavor possible.

Tonight we will make cheeseburgers and corn on the cob in our grill pan indoors and assemble our drinks for dinner. We can spread out our beach towels and have dinner and a movie to kick off summer.

A little rain isn’t going to stop us. We’ll be back out in the pool and working in the garden tomorrow if the weather reports are correct. We’ll light the beach-scented Yankee Candle and get summer vacation started.

Now, what’s a good summer movie for our dinner and a movie night?

Be sure and check out my latest posts over at Parade’s food section at the link above.

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