Happy Saint Patrick's Day

It’s Saint Patrick’s Day!  Here in the US that mostly means wearing green, pinching people that are not wearing green, and drinking!  If you are lucky enough to live in an area with an active Irish community, it can also be a great time to learn more about Irish Cultural Heritage.

Here in the Tallahassee/Big Bend Area we are lucky to have a small but active Irish community.  Every year they put on a Saint Patrick’s Day Parade and Festival.  This year the parade was a lot of fun.  Even The Boy, who generally hates the large crowds and loud noises inherent in parades, had a great time.  That is probably because the Saint Patrick’s Day parade is a rather more intimate affair than most parades.  The Saint Patrick’s Day parade is not a big parade by any means.  There are not a lot of people in the actual parade, and there are not huge crowds attending.  From beginning to end the parade took less than 5 minutes to pass by us, and took at most 30 minutes to make the entire 0.6 mile circuit around Lake Ella.  The people in the parade that hand out candy and necklaces to the kids were able to literally hand out candy and necklaces to the kids rather than throwing it in the general direction of the kids in the crowd, and everyone was very friendly.  Generally my kids want to go back home as soon as a parade is over, so I was pleasantly surprised when they asked to stay longer.  We made our own circuit around the lake before we left, exploring the stands and booths set up for the festival along the way.

But today is Saint Patrick’s Day, which requires some celebration.  If you are staring a pint of green beer in the face, and feeling a bit green yourself, I would like to offer an alternative; The Grasshopper.  The Grasshopper is a mint chocolate flavored, green colored cocktail, that probably originated in New Orleans. It tastes a bit like melted mint chocolate chip ice-cream, and is really good!

The Grass Hopper


  • Creme de Menthe
  • Creme de Cacao
  • Half and Half, Single Creme, or Light Cream


  • Combine equal parts Creme de Menthe, Creme de Cacao, and the cream of your choice in a cocktail shaker
  • Fill the shaker with Ice
  • Shake the combined ingredients and ice until the outside of the shaker becomes frosty
  • Fill Martini Glasses with the drink, straining out the ice 
  • Garnish with Mint Leaves (Chocolate Mint is preferred if available)


Tallahassee / Big Bend Community Calendar

Around mid December last year in the midst of many family friendly holiday actives, I began lamenting that similar activities did not happen more often the rest of the year.   The Tallahassee / Big Bend Area of Florida where I live is a great place for College students and young adults without children to find fun things to do (there are numerous events, bars, clubs, and shows catering specifically to them), but if you are a young to middle age adult with babies or school age children it can be hard to find things to do.

I decided that my New Year's resolution would be to find more community activities that my family could participate it, and enjoy the community I live in more.  Then soon after Christmas I started feeling poorly and promptly forgot about my resolution.  Now 2 months, many doctors visits, and the miracles of modern medicine later, I am feeling much better, and am ready to start my resolution.  

I began by trying to find actives for my own family to participate in.  I wanted to find things that looked fun or educational, didn't cost an arm and a leg, and were not being held on a school night.

As I found things to do, I realized that other families were probably struggling with the same problem, and decided to post what I found online in the hope that other families could benefit as well.

All the events that I find will be posted on the new Community Calendar page linked to from the Gerwerken Crafts Main Page.  So far there are two events, The Saint Patrick's Day Parade and Festival being held this weekend, and the North Florida Veg Fest being held next weekend.  You can see additional details on the calendar page.

If you know of an event that you would like to see on the calendar please tell me about it, but keep and mind that I am not listing all community events, just those that fit my criteria.  So, what does it take for an event to be on the calendar?

  • It must be either an event it would be appropriate to take a school aged or younger child to, or a date night event.
  • It can't be held on a school night.
  • It needs to cost no more than $20 for my family of 4 to attend (I might occasionally bump that up to $50 if something really amazing is happening.
  • It has to be something I would take my family to (I know, this one is really subjective, but I hope you like my choices).


On an unrelated note, you might notice a few changes to the Gerwerken Crafts website now, and in the near future.  I was hoping to finish them all prior to the calendar going live, but decided that getting this weekend's event out was more important.