Two years (and Miguel’s Rum Punch)!

Two years ago, I thought it would be fun to start a blog.

Once I’d decided to dive into this project and had an overall vibe in mind, I spent days trying to figure out the best name for it. Everyday Joy? Ordinary Happiness? I had a clear intention and so much to say– I giggle now at the fact that sometimes, I posted twice in a day. I calmed down over time, settling into a comfortable pace and excitedly sharing bits of my life. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but that’s ok- what started off as a project that made me happy remains just that. I enjoy my time here in Blog Land.

Obviously, in two years, every day can’t be blissful sunshine and butterflies. We’ve experienced our fair share of heartbreak and struggle in all sorts of areas (Dear 2014: No more, please.) While this blog does reveal quite a bit of my real life, I don’t always write about difficult times. They’re private, and that’s not really what The Usual Bliss is about. As I wrote in my very first post, it’s about recognizing and celebrating the little smiles as well as the big joys…and perhaps inspiring some of you to do the same.

With 558 posts, 16,520 photos (eep!), and twice as many readers as last year, two years feels good. I’ve moved beyond analyzing blog stats, but feel humbled when I take a look at them. I love a good party- and what better way to celebrate a milestone than to clink a glass?

With a tropical vacation creeping up on us next week (yay!), I’ve been craving fruity sunshine drinks. I first tasted the perfect Rum Punch at a bar on the island of Vieques, just off of Puerto Rico. It was made from fresh local fruit juice, local rums, and I sipped it on a patio with a view. The aquamarine sea, the vibrant flowers, the kindness of the people, the Puerto Rican rum… you could taste it all in one sip.

3376286432_a1e5cde942_o 3375467197_9865304158_o OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA 3375467819_78f11f79b9_o 3375473601_de4a80f2dd_o 3375470761_0fd144a70b_o 3376287156_8e9f6ff1a9_o 3375472885_5dda891b23_o 3375476703_253498c7f6_o

Miguel, the bartender, would not reveal his method- but over the years, I’ve had fun trying to mimic the flavors in his masterpiece. I vary the combination of juices based on what I have, but there are a couple of necessary ingredients to make this cocktail special: light AND dark rum, and nutmeg. The nutmeg might have you raising an eyebrow, but trust me on this. When combined with the flavor of the dark rum, it changes everything.

P1130909 P1130910 P1130911 P1130912 P1130914 P1130915 P1130916 P1130918 P1130919 P1130920 P1130923 P1130922

Mix up a shaker of Miguel’s Rum Punch, daydream about warm days ahead, and cheers to another year of bliss. As I said last year, thank you for making this project worthwhile and rewarding for me.

To another year! **Clink**


Miguel’s Rum Punch

Makes one stiff drink.

You’ll need:

  • A generous shot of light rum
  • 1 ounce cranberry or pomegranate juice
  • 1 ounce orange juice (freshly squeezed, if possible)
  • 1 ounce pineapple juice
  • Juice of half of a lime
  • Generous splash of dark rum to float
  • Grated nutmeg to taste (fresh is best)

In a shaker, combine a shot of light rum and the fruit juices. Shake to mix and pour over ice. Float some dark rum on the surface of the cocktail and give it a few shakes of nutmeg. Garnish with pineapple.  Leisurely stir with a straw while sipping in the sunshine, celebrating a milestone- or nothing at all. That’s the Usual Bliss way.

Still thirsty? Here are more drink recipes!

Check out my first blogiversary post.


  1. Your blog has become one of my favorite sites to visit. I understand things aren’t always rosy, but you definitely provide a bright ray of sunshine every time I stop by. Hope you have a fabulous trip!

  2. Cheers to two years, Amber! I love stopping by your blog for a dose of gorgeous mountain scenery, adorable puppy photos, wanderlust inspiration, and yummy recipes.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s