"Let's Talk About" Series, Asheville, Blog

To my friends, family, and readers who drink

Amber Shehan June 15, 2015

Let’s get a little serious. We all know that I am a brewer and lover of good booze. I love to share my drink recipes and such with the world, hence this blog – but I’m a healer first. Let’s talk about “conscious drinking.” I live in a town full of breweries, wineries, cider houses…often even winning…

Our reward at the end of the hike: Beer!

Conscious drinking - a letter to my friends, families, and readers who drink - from pixiespocket.comLet’s get a little serious.

We all know that I am a brewer and lover of good booze. I love to share my drink recipes and such with the world, hence this blog – but I’m a healer first. Let’s talk about “conscious drinking.”

I live in a town full of breweries, wineries, cider houses…often even winning the title of “Beer City USA”.  People visit Asheville just to tour the breweries and talk grains and hops and gruit and mouthfeels. We’ve got moonshine, local whisky, meaderies, even an “Amazing Pubcycle” that you can pedal up and down the hilly streets while guzzling down your favorite booze.

You visitors, you drinkers, family and friends: I see your beauty, but I am also seeing more and more often your sallow skin, your dark-circled eyes, and I can *feel* your livers crying. I can, even if you can’t. I know what it sounds and looks like – I watched my daddy die from cirrhosis and I surely don’t want to watch it happen again if I can help it.

Watching my beloveds stumble around without sense hurts my heart. Watching unnecessary fights makes me angry. Watching someone’s potentially positive spiritual journey cross the line and become just another delirious, painful night makes me sad. Hearing about folks driving while completely intoxicated makes me rage.

Alcohol, like any other intoxicant, absolutely has its uses and it can have great function in festival, celebration, and even shamanic journeying when used consciously.

But when you drain a bottle without thinking, it tends to turn your focus inward, into a spiral of SELF! and EGO! and gets you stuck on navel-gazing. It takes ALL your emotions and cranks them up into the atmosphere. It makes for easy tears, easy fights, and easy pain (both physical and otherwise).

Like I said, I’m a brewer, a pixie, a hobbit. I drink a beer or two a day, I bring bottles of booze, beer, and wine to gatherings and dinners to help celebrate. I’m not saying “Don’t drink.” I’m saying that we can be smarter about it. Especially those in my generation – we’re the up and coming elders, like it or not. There are kids learning from us, our own kids, and others who come to see what we have to share. What are we showing them?

I want you to do something about it.

Drink more water. Please *occasionally* listen to that voice that says “maybe I don’t need this drink right now”. Please take care of yourselves because I can’t do it for all of y’all, nor should I have to. If you’re gonna drink, drink consciously.

I love you all.


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Amber Shehan

Hi! I'm Amber Pixie, and this is my site. Enjoy the recipes, information, posts, and please feel free to message me if you have questions!


  1. Rebecca on June 15, 2015 at 12:11 pm

    Well said I full heartedly agree and so sorry to hear about your daddy I’m not a huge drinker but I do enjoy an occasional beer or drink of some sort but I to hate seeing people take it to a level it should NEVER get to drinking is meant for having fun not getting so drunk you don’t remember.

  2. Abigail @ They're Not Our Goats on June 15, 2015 at 2:35 pm

    I appreciated this post! I only drink occasionally, and at that I usually split a drink with my hubby, but I am fascinated (though inexperienced) with the craft of making your own home brews. But I too have seen the negative effects of alcohol misuse with a lot of loved ones (and in my ten years ago self too!). So I appreciate you encouraging responsible consumption. A drink here and there is harmless. Overdoing it can destroy health and family.

  3. Justin on June 15, 2015 at 3:25 pm

    Usually, at least around my hearth, it’s highly situational. I don’t drink all that much, myself, but every season when I pop open last season’s mead, and it turns out to be a fantastic batch, I might go a little crazy and glug-glug-glug and then the wife’s wondering where I learned the songs I sing, and I try my best to get her – and anyone else around – to join in.

    Midsummer is coming up, and it’s THAT much more important to stay hydrated, especially while drinking, especially because it’s blazing hot and that makes it so much easier to have problems. Don’t forget that!

    • Amber Shehan on June 15, 2015 at 4:48 pm

      Right on, Justin! I for sure tip the cup a few too many times myself every now and again, but most of the time, I consume consciously. 🙂 And hydrate, hydrate, HYDRATE!

  4. tessa on June 16, 2015 at 12:07 am

    Lovely post, Amber.

  5. Andrea on June 17, 2015 at 8:01 am

    I am just now becoming interested in making my own brews (mostly thanks to your site!). I enjoy drinking, but not to excess. My father-in-law died a couple of years ago due to liver failure, due to a lifelong addiction to alcohol. I look at alcohol the same way I do anything else I put into my body; moderation is crucial. As long as a person doesn’t have the tendency for addiction, alcohol can play an innocent part of the joys of life! Thanks for this post, Pixie!

  6. Wild Drinks & Cocktails Blog Tour | Emily Han on November 6, 2015 at 8:53 pm

    […] 11/9: Amber Shehan of Pixie’s Pocket. I adore this herbalist and homebrewer’s pixie spirit and fun recipes, like this recent Spiced Chai Wine. Plus she’s really thoughtful, as demonstrated in her excellent post on conscious drinking. […]

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