Sharing recipes, crafts and frugal living, the challenges and triumphs of parenting a neurotypical child and a child on the Autism Spectrum. Yoga Instructor said goodbye to her nightly glass of Chardonnay to give up habits that were not serving her purpose in life! The CocktailMom name remains, however with a new focus on healthy and authentic living.



Let go of the things that are holding you back and no longer serve your spirit.
Happy New Year!



Be Merry! 
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. 
Much love-Gretchen Schock



The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference. 


Corner of my Home- My Favorite Spot

My favorite spot on a nice day is tucked away in my hammock with my two favorite guys. You don't need a stand, just two trees and it is the most glorious experience to sway from side to side as you look up at the clouds and talk about dreams with your children.

ENO DoubleNest Hammock sold at REI.
If you still need a gift for someone on your holiday list, consider creating a favorite spot for them.


Reindeer Craft Ornament

Surprise your kids with a fun winter break craft to do at home. Pick up all the supplies at your local craft store.
Here is what you need:

  • Small wooden clothes pins
  • googley eyes
  • red small pom-pom balls
  • yarn or ribbon
Have the kids paint the wooden clothespin and once dry glue the eyes and nose onto one side. On the opposite side glue the ribbon or yarn and hang on your tree once it's dry.
Have fun and enjoy the extra time with your children.



My boys are now eight and ten years old and ever since they were babies we have had the nightly tradition of curling up in one of their beds and reading together. Even though they are both reading on their own, this tradition of me reading to them and snuggled all together is one tradition that I hope we keep for a few more years.

If you have boys you are very familiar with the Harry Potter and Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, but have you heard about Nathan Abercrombie? No it's not the store. It's a kid who turns into a zombie! But don't worry it's not scary, in fact it's funny and has us all excited to read the next chapter.

Write up from the publisher: 
"Ten-year-old Nathan Abercrombie used to be an ordinary kid …until he got doused with an experimental serum that turne him into a half-dead zombie. But it turns out being half dead isn’t all bad. He doesn’t need any sleep, and he doesn’t feel pain. Still, Nathan would rather be human. Will he find a cure? Or will Nathan be half-dead forever?"

I highly suggest checking out the Nathan Abercrombie series at your local library, your boys will love these books!


Sweet Potato Vegetarian Burrito

A weekly staple in our house is burrito night. It's a quick, healthy dinner that takes hardly any time to prepare and most likely everything is in your fridge or cabinet. Normally we have black bean burritos sometimes with rice or a side salad. I wanted to switch it up this week and decided to add a sweet potato. It was delicious!
Cook the sweet potato in a skillet until slightly soft, add onions and cook until translucent. Finally add corn and black beans. Serve in a whole wheat tortilla wrap with shredded lettuce. Enjoy!



 Pull out the Scrabble board and play with your child.
Teachable moments are all around us.


Children's Chore Chart

I was tired of constantly asking my children if they combed their hair, brushed their teeth or went to the bathroom before we headed out for school every morning. I felt like such a nag! Things needed to change. The boys are eight and ten years old, old enough to be a bit more responsible.

So I made a chart of all the things that they need to accomplish before school, I had it laminated at Staples and it lives on our fridge where everyone can see it and has access to it. I have also given them the choice to choose when they would like to have their 30 minutes of computer/video game "screen time", in the morning or evening. The catch is, if they don't check off their chart each morning they will then lose the much coveted screen time.

Our mornings have completed shifted and changed, and are a lot less stressful for me. Now the only words that come out of my mouth that fall in the "nag" category are "Have you checked your chart?" and I say it only once to both of my boys. That's it. When I check the chart if it's not filled in for the day the screen time box gets a big X. This was the motivating factor for my kids to complete the chart.

The new system has worked beautifully! I highly recommend that you try it for your family if your children are old enough to follow directions and do everything on their chart by themselves. The boys actually enjoy checking things off and they get really proud of themselves when they do it without me having to remind them to "check the chart".


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