Smirnoff Sorbet Light Cocktails for Memorial Day and Beyond

This is a sponsored post by Smirnoff Sorbet Light.  All reviews/opinions expressed in this post are unbiased and based on my personal view.  And yes I did want my title to sound like Buzz Lightyear was saying it.

cocktail ideas for memorial day and summer barbecuesMemorial Day is this weekend!  Will you be barbecuing?  Our family, along with probably everyone else in my neighborhood, will be outside, grilling food and sipping cold drinks.  When the weather warms up, I like to try to find a new “go-to” drink.  Since this summer I will be vacationing where temperatures reach well over 100 degrees (which means I will be forced to wear a swimsuit), I need something that is delicious and refreshing but without a ton of calories or sugars.  Smirnoff sent me their new line of infused vodkas, Smirnoff Sorbet Light, to try and they are exactly what I was looking for.  They have only 78 calories per 1.5 ounce serving which makes them light so I don’t feel super guilty about having a cocktail.  The best part is they taste natural and do not have any sort of diet-y aftertaste.

memorial day barbecue ideasI love to barbecue when the weather gets warmer but the menu can get pretty boring if you aren’t careful.  It is usually just steak and corn, or at least at my house it is.  I invited a few friends over for a little lunch barbecue to try out something a little different.  My amazing friend, Amy (who used to write the most delicious food blog) put together this awesome grilled lunch to show us how we can change-up our menu.  This grilled shrimp and hearts of romaine salad was insanely good and super easy since it was paired with a store-bought cilantro dressing.  And remember shrimp grill up super fast so you won’t be stuck over the hot grill for long.  Nothing is better than sweet grilled onions, am I right?  The grilled tomato skewers are a fun take on a caprese appetizer and are sweet and juicy.  And while I have never met a loaf of bread that I didn’t like, this grilled crostini is what dreams are made of.  I will be recreating this menu on Memorial Day for sure.

mixing drinksThe Smirnoff Sorbet Light Vodkas come in three, perfect for summer flavors, Lemon, Raspberry Pomegranate and Mango Passion Fruit.

Smirnoff Sorbet Light lemon TeaI’m an iced tea lover so this black tea based cocktail had to be tried:

Smirnoff Sorbet Light Lemon Tea

1.5 oz Lemon Smirnoff Sorbet Light

3 oz Unsweetened Black Tea

.5 oz Fresh Lemon Juice

.25 oz Agave Nectar

Mix well and serve over ice.

YUM!  And totally refreshing.

summer barbecue ideasHosting a barbecue is a good time to invite friends to try something new.  Most of us get stuck in a rut and it doesn’t take much to push us out of it again.  Set out some simple recipes and ingredients and have everyone pour their own cocktails.  Chances are, they will give something new a shot.  Or maybe they’ll just have a shot.  And that is when the party gets really fun. (Please drink responsibly).

grilled dessert for memorial day and summer barbecueI’m pretty sure I have the world’s biggest sweet tooth.  If you haven’t tried grilled pound cake yet you better get on it!  Amazing!  Like Tom Cruise jumping on Oprah’s couch amazing.  And just that quick grill on the bread adds a whole new depth of flavor to a simple berries and cream dessert.  I’d like to also note that this creme fraiche had honey in it which made me want to sing love songs to it.  So simple, but SO delightful.

summer cocktails pink and orangePassion fruit is one of my favorite flavors ever so I really enjoyed the Mango Passion Fizz but the big winner was the Raspberry Lemon Punch.  Total crowd pleaser.

Smirnoff Sorbet Light Mango Passion Fizz

1.5 oz Mango Passion Fruit Smirnoff Sorbet Light

.75 oz Fresh Lemon Juice

.5 oz Agave Nectar

2 oz Club Soda

Shake up first 3 ingredients and top with Club Soda.

Smirnoff Sorbet Light Raspberry Lemon Punch

1.5 oz Raspberry Pomegranate Smirnoff Sorbet Light

4 oz Lemonade

4 raspberries muddled

Muddle 4 raspberries in a glass and add cold lemonade and Smirnoff Sorbet Light.

smirnoff sorbet light for summer barbecuesHuge thank you to Lauren and Amy for helping me out with my little lunch barbecue (Lauren did all my floral styling and Amy did all the food)  I know testing cocktails and eating delicious food can be such hard work.  Wink.  And thank you Smirnoff for introducing me to your delicious new product.  While this was a sponsored post by Smirnoff Sorbet Light all opinions are my own.

What are your favorite summer drink flavors?

Old School Skateboard inspired Father’s Day Fun

This old school skateboarding inspried Father’s Day inspiration shoot is based on my husband and his love of the sport and his penchant for saying, “Let’s do this thing” to my boys when they ask him to do something.  When Amy of Amy’s Kitchen Table and I decided to work together on a post, me doing decor and she doing food, I was super excited.  I haven’t gotten to do any fun projects with her since Easter.  A year ago.  I came up with the idea for the look of Father’s Day for my family and asked Katherine of The Side Stuff to help with the graphic design.  I took her design and changed it up a bit to make more decor.  I bet the party would have been even better if Katherine would have been able to work with me on the whole thing but she’s about to have a baby any minute and I didn’t want to bog her down.  If you haven’ checked out her site, GO (My fave party is her Monster Happy Hour! for moms and kids)!  The ideas and decor for this is solely based on my family.  I’ve got two little boys and they love to have “boys club” with dad.  So I decided that Father’s Day would consist of lots of activities and, of course, if Amy is involved, delicious food.

I didn’t intend to use neon when I first thought of the idea (it’s soooooo 5 minutes ago, said with big eye roll for dramatic effect, but not by me) but I found the Todd Oldham paper tape set at Target and knew it had to be part of this.  Because I still love neon.  I don’t know when I’ll be over it and that is ok.  If you are over it feel free to use something less offensive.  I added lightning bolts to make it a little more fun.  I can’t tell you why I think lightning bolts are fun, I just do.

Sometimes, since I am a girl, I am not invited to boys club.  If that happens this Father’s Day my husband will be able to follow this checklist.

And then it’s time for dinner.  Amy came up with a delicious menu and guess what?  I got to eat this for lunch after we took pictures.  Bangin!  Coffee rubbed steaks with homemade steak sauce and homemade potato chips.  Hop on over to her page for all of her recipes!  You HAVE TO check out her blog if you haven’t already.  She’s the most insane cook I know.  She has that ease and common sense and creativity in the kitchen that I, and most people, lack.  I love to watch her cook!  And I love eating what she’s cooked even more!

Seriously, those chips!

My kids are obsessed with snow cones right now.  So I decided for the “chillax” portion of the day we would serve snowcones that the adults and kids could both enjoy.  My husband and I have been exploring whiskey sours lately so I found a recipe that was a bit fruitier than usual and used that in place of the standard snow cone syrup.

Serves AT LEAST four adult snowcones with some left over:

1 cup Orange Juice (fresh squeezed is best!)

5 oz. pineapple juice

1/2 cup whiskey (if making this kid friendly, use ginger ale.  Leave out the whiskey, duh)

1 tsp agave

2 tsp maraschino cherry juice

Pour over shaved (of crushed ice)

Garnish with a cherry

What could be better than drinking a whiskey sour snow cone while playing a game of dominos?  The kid friendly version of the snow cone is shown with the little green picks.  The ginger ale keeps the color similar to the adult version and is sweet enough that the kids really enjoy it.

I really wanted to enjoy that whole snowcone, but I had to get home from Amy’s…boo to mid day photo shoots of cocktails.

Ain’t nothing more chillaxing than a red cup filled with the leftover whiskey sour after an afternoon of activities.  Your Father’s Day might look a little different than ours especially if you have little girls.  But I am sure dad would be just fine with having his hair brushed for a minute.  But he might draw the line at makeup.

BIG thank you to Katherine for creating the main graphic for the shoot and Amy for wanting to play with me.  Seriously, go check out her site and tell me what recipe sounds delicious to you.  My answer, all of them.

Happy Father’s Day!

Find the recipes here!