Sex on the Beach (and The 2013 Blog of the Year Award!)

We rang in the New Year with a 1950s cocktail party.  Costumes were recommended, encouraged, applauded and appreciated.

Eli took a class in bartending while in Argentina last year, and mixed some very colorful cocktails for some of us, and some very tasty mocktails for the kids, teetotalers, and designated drivers. He dressed the part, right down to the fake cigarette that made little puffs of corn starch when blown into.

We have the best friends in the world!  We can always count on the Rahn Gang to come dressed to the nines…

Check out those poodle skirts!

We had our beatnik, our cube(squarer than square), and our cool cat.

Remember the Alamo?  How about Davy Crockett of the Wild Frontier, the rage in the late fifties?

Speaking of wild, Cousins Nancy and Ian lent some class to the party when they arrived looking like James Bond and Jackie O, only better.

And in a class of their own…Sue, Rick, and Stu!

They brought soft drinks I haven’t seen since the ’50s AND….

(Hey, Rocky, watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat!)

…the fine fare we were raised on back then:  Bugles, Velveeta, Franz Fruit Pies, Vienna Sausages, and Hostess Twinkies, Cupcakes, and Ding Dongs!

Not to mention Wonder Bread and baloney!

My new favorite photo in the world—Sue holding “Mommy’s Little Helper.”

Our bartender kept ’em coming, mostly non-alcoholic drinks with all kinds of fruity juices adorned with tiny umbrellas.  I saw a really pretty drink go by, and asked for one just like it.  I thought it was a mocktail, but it went straight to my head.  “Isn’t this non-alcoholic?” I asked.  Eli replied, “Mom, if it were a virgin cocktail it probably wouldn’t be called  ‘Sex on the Beach’.”   Yeah, probably not.  But I did discover how much I enjoy Sex On the Beach.

At midnight, like always, we toasted the New Year with a chorus of Auld Lang Syne and a round of Boston Coolers, the perfect combination of Vernor’s ginger ale and vanilla ice cream.  

Dear friends, family, followers, and all my blogging buddies, here’s wishing you a very Happy New Year!


And one last nod to the old year…

Many thanks to Sarah Potter, of sarahpotterwrites for nominating me for The 2013 Blog of the Year Award.   Sarah is a novelist, a talented musician, and a poet with a fresh voice and a sly sense of humor.  Her mastery of the haiku is a wonder.  Please check out her blog!




  1. Hoo Ha! Many kudos to yet another blogger award. You so deserve it, Naomi. 🙂

    1. Thank you, Susan. Happy New Year!

  2. reocochran says:

    This was a great idea for a New Year’s Eve party, I loved the fifties style! I have a poodle skirt that I sewed and wore for Halloween, many years ago, that my two daughters (now 33 and 28) have also worn! We would have fit right into the fun! Cocktail party and social time, wonderful and creative choice!

    1. Hi Robin,
      I have a feeling we would be good neighbors! Anyone with a poodle skirt that’s ready-to-go sounds like our kind of party gal. Thanks so much for the kind comments, and the visit. So good to hear from you.

  3. Naomi says:

    Wow! Congratulations! And that party looks like fun!

    1. Thank you, Naomi! It was lots of fun–took me three days to clean up, but it was worth it! Best wishes for the New Year, and thanks for stopping by.

  4. ledrakenoir says:

    Wonderful photos – very well captured… 🙂

    1. Thank you! Happy New Year!

  5. katzmcmullen says:

    What a party! Is there any escaping the fifties? Eli gets an A+ for delivering Mom the cocktail with kick. Sex on the Beach, baby! Yeah!

    1. Hi Kathy,
      He was the hit of the party! Most of what he made was attractive blends of fruit juices, grenadines, and sodas, beautifully arranged with fruit slices, colorful straws, and tiny umbrellas, but he knew how to mix up some classy high octane concoctions too. Something for everyone!

  6. scillagrace says:

    Awesome!! In our book collection we have a few cocktail cookbooks, artfully photographed in special glassware and with an appropriate prop. They always look so cool and sophisticated…and we have the jazz collection to go with it. Sadly, none of the clothes…although, wait a tick! I do have a halter dress with a poofy skirt in black with red cherries on it! Okay, I’m inspired. I wonder if I can get Steve to dress up and mix ’em like Eli? Would love to give it a try! 😉

    1. Do it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. What a FUN party! Love the authentic costumes and foodstuffs.

    1. Hi Richard,
      So good to hear from you. We do like to play dress up! Hardly worth throwing a party without a costume theme.
      Happy New Year, Cousin!

  8. Elyse says:

    Looks like a fun party!

    Happy New Year!

    1. Hi Elyse,
      Thanks for the visit. It was lots of fun–I know people who don’t enjoy playing games, but we love to, so between costumes, games, and Sex on the Beach, we are amused.
      Happy New Year to you and yours, Elyse!

  9. Anyone who did not grow up in your family is totally jealous. Trust me!

    1. Dear Cathryn,
      You are so sweet! Life is short, and sometimes I think I should focus more time on serious pursuits. Actually, I think that most of the time. But there is nothing more important to me than my family, and I am thankful every day and ALL THE TIME that we all love and like each other and enjoy working and playing and traveling and learning together. It is my greatest joy and deepest satisfaction.
      But neither do we confine the definition of family to blood relations, and that makes all the difference. Everyone in the photos above we consider family. If I know you, Cathryn–and I think after thirty plus years of friendship, I do–you have a large and loving circle of family forged through bonds of love.

  10. Holy Moly. I like your party. I believe I lost my invitation or it got lost in the mail. Maybe next time. You DO give the best theme parties. 🙂
    Congratulations on the award. Way to go!

    1. Dear Tess,
      You always make me smile! Oh, boy, do I wish you lived around the corner! I think you would fit right in!
      Thanks so much for the kind word. Wishing you a Happy New Year.

      1. Ha ha ha. Be careful what you wish for. Kidding. 😀

  11. Had to look that drink up — I’d be light-headed, too . . . What a happy party — thanks for sharing!

    1. Dear Mary,
      You are a woman of action! I had never heard of it, but it was certainly a blast. So glad you could stop by and share in the fun.

  12. ShimonZ says:

    This sounds like a very appropriate start for a happy new year. Loved the pictures, and am happy just looking at you all. Here’s to a lot more sex on the beach. Enjoy every day!

    1. Dear Shimon,
      Thank you for making me smile. After reading your response I could easily picture you a part of the festivities, a sparkle in your eye and a glass in your hand. Wishing you joy in every day, my friend.

  13. I just love everyone’s gear they’re wearing. It look such a wonderful occasion.
    Thanks, Naomi, for your lovely words re the Blog of the Year nomination 🙂

    1. Dear Sarah,
      Thank you for coming! And I am so glad to be able to let other folks know about your wonderful blog. The more I learn about you, the more impressed I am at your wide range of talents, and it all makes your blog shine.

  14. niasunset says:

    Congratulations dear Naomi, this was amazing post and seems that it was the most beautiful party in there, that I have seen… Blessing and Happiness. Thank you, Happy New Year, love, nia

    1. Dear Nia,
      You are always so kind! I wish you could have been there, but I almost feel as if you were. Thank you so much for your visit, and taking the time to share your generous thoughts.
      Blessings and happiness to you for the New Year.

  15. That looks like a great party, I love your friend Sue’s outfit, complete with the hair rollers 🙂

    1. Thank you for the generous comment. I still cannot look at that photo of Sue without laughing aloud. She always goes all out, no matter what the theme is, and so does her whole family, but I think she will have a hard time topping this!

      1. Yes, given that photo of her family I think they will have a hard time topping that. She looks like the kind of person that will give it a try though 🙂

  16. gkm2011 says:

    Great party – totally agree about the Boston Coolers, Vernors all the way!

    1. You are the first person who actually mentioned Vernors! To me, everything else pales in comparison, and I don’t think it’s just because I grew up in Detroit, where the original Vernors plant was. It has so much more flavor–I seem to recall that Vernors was aged in wood.
      Thanks for the visit, and a very Happy New Year to you!

      1. gkm2011 says:

        Agree – Vernors is much more “gingeralely” – always goes up my nose. Vernors with a little egg nog also is a treat. Happy new year to you too!

  17. bulldog says:

    Sex on the beach had me dashing to this post… but as usual my mind was in the gutter… loved this post and sure looked like a lot of fun…

    1. That is so funny! I hesitated about using that title, but an hour after I posted I got a message from WordPress that my views had spiked, and I DO think it might have had something to do with the title of the post! Thanks for making me smile. Best wishes for the New Year!

      1. bulldog says:

        Naomi, I think our titles have a lot to do with reads… so often I go and look at the freshly pressed and seem to click on titles that grab me rather than possible content…

  18. Great party, pix, and drinks! Congrats on the award.

    1. Hi Lisa,
      Thanks so much. I sure appreciate the visit, and the kind word!

  19. kathy says:

    Very cool party! You do have the most amazing family & friends 🙂
    Congratulations on the award, also – yours is easily one of the best blogs out there and you totally deserve the accolades!

    1. Dear Kathy,
      I DO have the most amazing friends, and I feel fortunate to count you among them. Thanks for getting me out of the house for a great writing session today!

  20. I haven’t ever seen most of those exciting, rather colourful products ion the pictures, but I have drunk a sex-on-the-beach cocktail, and thoroughly enjoyed it. Loved all the dressing up.

    Happy New Year.


    1. Dear Kate,
      Thanks for the visit. We have both led sheltered lives, as I had never even heard of Sex On the Beach–at least the alcoholic version–before Eli introduced me to that drink. Between you and me, the cocktail is probably healthier than most of those colorful products displayed in my post.
      Happy New Year to you too, Kate!

  21. nutsfortreasure says:

    Awesome look into your night ushering in 2014! I used to do my very long hair in rollers like Sue was adorned with 🙂 ah the memories

    1. Dear Eunice,
      Thanks for dropping by. I remember my big sister used to do up her hair in orange juice cans the size of those curlers. Sure wore them well, and I bet you did too! Happy New Year!

      1. nutsfortreasure says:

        I had hair down to my waist so it just gave me BODY lol

  22. That looks like quite a party, Naomi. Love the ‘Sex on the beach’ cocktail idea. 🙂 Wishing you and your lovely family a very happy new Year. 🙂

    1. Dear Sylvia,
      Thanks so much for the visit! Now that we know what wonders Eli is capable of, we will surely have to plan around that. Maybe we will have a sixties spy party next!
      Wishing you and your large and adorable family a very Happy New Year!

  23. Roy McCarthy says:

    No arguments from me on that award.

    1. Dear Roy
      You are too kind! You always make me smile. I know you are busy typing away on your next novel, and snapping spiffy photos of Jersey for your blog. I wish you the very best for the New Year, and look forward to another year of following One the Rock!

  24. Dorota Rahn says:


    It was fun to be a part of the 1950s gang. Cocktails were delicious!!!


    1. Dear Dorota,
      You and your whole family were amazing! I loved all your costumes, and you always bring such good energy to a party!

  25. Arlene says:

    Looks like a great party and awesome costumes!! Happy New Year Naomi!!

    1. Hi Arlene,
      Thanks so much for the visit. Wishing you a very Happy New Year too!

  26. I’m smiling so wide it hurts! I grew up in the 50’s and completely identified with this. Wish I lived nearby and was on your party list! BTW, I’m drinking a Vernor’s right now!

    1. Dear Victoria,
      Reading your comment made me smile too. I think you are one of the only people I know who knows what a Vernor’s really is! I DO so wish you lived by, because I know you would fit right in!
      Best wishes for the New Year!

  27. Ruth says:

    Cheers Naomi. Love the menu! Looks like a lot of fun. All the best for the new year and thanks for your good words on the blog.

    1. Hi Ruth,
      Thanks for the visit, and the good wishes. So glad you could stop by. Best wishes for the New Year.
      I look forward to another year of enjoying your blog.

  28. Amy says:

    What a fun, cool party! Thank you for sharing these joyful photos. Best wishes to you and your family, Naomi!

    1. Hi Amy,
      Thanks so much for the visit. Best wishes to you for a Happy New Year!

  29. Happy New Year!!! What a great retro way to start the year! May this new year be just as exciting!

    1. Thank you, Carol. I wish the same for you!

  30. In December 1976, as a senior in college at Texas A&M University, I went to a convention in Atlanta, Georgia. At the top of the Peachtree Plaza, about 1000 feet up there, they had a rotating restaurant and bar. That was the first time and place I had “Sex on the Beach.” We college students, raging with hormones, thought it was the funniest name for a drink.

    1. Hi Russel,
      Thank you so much for sharing that story. What a blast! This was the first time I’d heard of it. I did feel pleasantly naughty having my first taste of sex on the beach, even at the ripe old age of 57!

  31. elisaruland says:

    You throw the BEST parties, Naomi! Wish I could have been there, but at least I can look forward to what you come up with next New Year’s Eve. Happy happy!

    1. Dear Elisa,
      I sure wish I could handpick my neighbors. You’d fit right in, I just know it. I’m sure we’ll come up with something fun for next year’s bash. Best wishes for the New Year!

  32. pattisj says:

    You all know how to party! Great outfits, your entire gang went all out on those.

    1. Hi Patti,
      Thanks for stopping by. I just love having friends who are not afraid to dress up. Happy New Year, Patti!

  33. Jamie Dedes says:

    I love the poodle skirts. I had one and so enjoyed it. This also reminds me about curlers. So glad they’ve gone the way of all things … at least for me. I haven’t set my hair since around 1967. It probably looks it but so what.

    Naomi, you and yours sure have a gift for having a good time and making people smile … even your blog fans vicariously.

    Happy New Year! Cheers!

    Love –

    1. Jamie Dedes says:

      P.S.- Congrats on the Blog of the Year. I totally agree. Bravo! Well earned.

    2. Dear Jamie,
      My big sister used to wear orange juice cans for curlers. There was one poodle skirt floating around the family–with five girls clothing got passed around from kid to kid. You don’t need to do your hair–I think you have a very classy portrait on your gravatar.
      Thank you so much for stopping by, and for all the very sweet stories and comments you shared.
      Best wishes for the New Year!

  34. What a nifty idea for a New Year’s shindig! Love the curlers in the hair.

    1. Thanks, Britt. She was hilarious. I appreciate the visit, and look forward to visiting your blog.

  35. What a fun party, Naomi! I love the bartender, of course. But, I think I’ll pass on the sex-on-the-beach thing this winter. Chuckle… I really enjoyed the party! Have a good 2014!

  36. What a great post! Surely a party to remember!

    1. Thank you, Michael!

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