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'Reasons Mommy Drinks': Cocktail recipes for dazed parents

With the many challenges of parenting in mind, Fiona Stevenson and Lyranda Martin-Evans devised an inventive and irreverent recipe book to meet the cocktail needs and frayed nerves of the average mother. In "Reasons Mommy Drinks," they have a tonic for every tumult. Here's an excerpt.

Today

BOARD BOOKS
At least the name is accurate. After reading Big Red Barn for the 1,098th time, Mommy is officially bored. She used to pore over Jonathan Franzen novels and biographies about Steve Jobs, but now she finds herself overly invested in the search-and-rescue mission unfolding in Where’s Spot? This is not helping her reverse the rapid descent into permanent Mommy Brain. Some board books don’t even have plots. Or words! They’re just pictures of babies next to pictures of baby animals. How did this author get a book deal? Did she go into Random House and say, “I’ll shoot you straight. I spent my advance on a cocaine-fueled gambling binge, but check out these royalty-free stock shots I found on Google Images”? To spice things up, Mommy has started going off script and hoping you don’t notice. In last night’s rendition of Goodnight Moon, the Quiet Old Lady was having a torrid affair with the Cow, and the two Little Kittens were about to expose the scandal on E! Bowl Full of Mush Network. Speaking of Goodnight Moon, the page that says “goodnight nobody”? That’s messed up. Truthfully, Mommy knows that time passes all too quickly and soon you’ll grow out of her reading to you. Then she’ll miss Sandra Boynton’s complexities of the postmodern antihero in The Snuggle Puppy. One day you’ll read Charlotte’s Web all on your own. SPOILER ALERT: The central character dies. This is why you should stick to math.

BOARD BOOK EMPIRE
Ingredients
1 ounce Canadian Club whisky
1 ounce peach schnapps
3 ounces cola
Squeeze of lime

Instructions
Fill a glass with ice. Pour in all the ingredients and stir. Serve on a board book, which makes a great coaster.

How Badly You Need This Drink: 3 out of 5 pacifiers

WORKING FROM HOME
Sometimes the basement floods or the nanny gets deported and suddenly Mommy is forced to work from home. This usually coincides with the worst possible day ever to be out of the office. You’re happily playing on the floor, so she orchestrates a conference call.

MOMMY: Thanks, everyone, for dialing in. As you can see on slide four—

YOU: DUCKA DUCKA DUCKAAAAAAAAAA!

CLIENT: Is there a fire alarm on your end?

ACCOUNT GUY: I think I hear a cat dying.

Mommy quickly turns on Sesame Street’s YouTube channel, even though it might give you epilepsy, and goes off the cuff because she can’t see her PowerPoint.

MOMMY: As you’ll see on slide six—

CLIENT: What happened to slide four?

You spill organic goat milk all over Mommy’s laptop. Sad Mac face appears.

MACBOOK AIR: BLEEEEEERRRRRRR!

YOU: BLEEEEEERRRRRRR!

ACCOUNT GUY: Seriously, is that cat okay?

Mommy tries to hit Mute but instead hangs up. Now she can’t find the passcode because you ate the piece of paper it was written on. When she finally dials back in, she has no idea what anyone is talking about. It’s probably about her.

CLIENT: . . . clear out the dead weight, we’ll be in a great place. What do you think on your end?

MOMMY: Well . . .. . . let’s circle back COB with some below-the-line ideas to maximize share of dollar (that sounds like Mommy has this under control, right?).

Total silence.

YOU: PPPFFFTTTTTTTWRRRAAAAPPPFFFTTTTTT!

Mercifully, someone has a hard stop so the call ends. Your diaper has leaked all over the sofa. Mommy lies down on it anyway. Later you pick up her company-owned BlackBerry and toss it in the toilet, which is a good metaphor for where Mommy’s career is headed.

CAREER SUICIDE
Ingredients
1 ounce Malibu rum
1 ounce tequila
3 ounces lemon- lime soda
Splash of orange juice
Splash of grenadine

Instructions
Combine all ingredients in an ice- filled glass and stir. Enjoy while surfing Monster.com.

How Badly You Need This Drink: 4 out of 5 pacifiers

THE PARK
When Mommy loads up the stroller with enough crap to open a Babies “R” Us, it means it’s time to go to the park. Mommy brought wholesome, organic snacks, but the first thing you do is eat sand. Mmm, notes of raccoon pee. Also, she forgot to pack your hat, which, according to the Unspoken Rules of Parenting, is the equivalent of leaving you outside naked in a snowstorm. At the playground, parenting shortcomings never go unnoticed. Flanked by Stepford Wives who whisper their disapproval and a gaggle of nannies who openly discuss it in a foreign language, Mommy is living an Orwellian existence.

At least this means there are lots of other kids for you to play with/catch illnesses from. Including Terror Toddler. Mommy suppresses her inner Jerry Springer and tries not to freak out when this bully-in-training shoves you, snatches your pail, and comes dangerously close to blinding you with a shovel. Who is this kid’s parent? Oh, it’s Weekend Dad, who is busy texting last night’s piece of strange on his hip-holstered Android. Mommy decides to give Terror Toddler a pass, since that kid is going to be filled with self-loathing (and pharmaceuticals) in about a dozen years. Meanwhile, Mommy gets her cardio burn on by chasing you backward up a slide, moving you out of the way of big kids on swings, and catching you from falling off the playground stairs. At least she no longer feels guilty about her lapsed gym membership. Speaking of exercise, now Weekend Dad is doing chin-ups on the monkey bars to impress the local MILFs. Maybe he should spend more time on his parenting skills and less time on his upper-body strength since Terror Toddler is currently aiming a Super Soaker at a sleeping newborn. Oh, the park, where nature and nurture come together to bitch- slap each other in the face.

PARKS AND WRECK
Ingredients
3 ounces lemon juice
2 teaspoons raw sugar
1 ounce light rum
Sprig of fresh basil

Instructions
Rim a glass with some of the lemon juice, then raw sugar— or with the sand that will permanently be tracked into your house— and fill the glass with ice. Pour in the rum, and the rest of the lemon juice and raw sugar, and stir. Garnish with the basil.

How Badly You Need This Drink:  4 out of 5 pacifiers

BABY BELLY-NI (nonalcoholic)
Ingredients
5 ounces chilled sparkling nonalcoholic cider
2 ounces peach nectar
Splash of lemon juice

Instructions
Chill a Champagne flute. Pour in all the ingredients, stir, and enjoy your final days of freedom. You have no idea.

THE SAFE TRAVELER (nonalcoholic)
Ingredients
2 ounces pear juice
2 ounces apple juice
Splash of lemon juice
Sage leaf

Instructions
Combine the pear, apple, and lemon juices in a shaker with ice. Shake well and strain into an ice- filled glass. Garnish with a sage leaf.

THE CONFETTI COCKTAIL (nonalcoholic)
Ingredients
4 ounces unsweetened cherry cider
1 ounce almond syrup
1 apple, peeled, cored, and cubed
1 pear, peeled, cored, and cubed
1 peach, peeled, pitted, and cubed

Instructions
Combine all the ingredients in a blender with ice and blend until smooth. Pour into a glass and consume while doing internal cartwheels because you’re not in labor today.

Excerpt from REASONS MOMMY DRINKS by Lyranda Martin Evans & Fiona Stevenson ©2013 by Fiona + Lyranda Inc. Reprinted by permission of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House LLC, a Penguin Random House Company.

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