Category: Entertaining

back to the grind.

Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House Tour

Now that Christmas is over and I’m heading back to my students and back to my reporting gig, I may as well show you a little bit of my Christmas decor. Right?

I mean, that makes sense. Since Christmas was a week and a half ago. 😉

Let’s do the tour.

Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House TourThere was a small window on Christmas Eve afternoon where I caught my house all picked up – it was just before all of my family arrived for our annual potluck and gift exchange. I supplied the hot buttered rum, flat apple pie, artichoke chili dip, and some cinnamon rolls {basically, all of the naughty foods – not that you’re surprised} to take home for breakfast the next morning, and everyone else brought the rest. Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House Tour We got these curtains at Target over the summer, and I just love the black and white against all of my pops of color!Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House Tour I have a thing for vintage ornaments, and this glittered “Merry Christmas” one is my all-time favorite. My Grammy inherited all of her friend’s ornaments when she passed away years ago, and Grammy already had enough ornaments, so she knew who to call.

Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House Tour Annabelle got into a really crafty phase this year, and she made the little mitten garland, among many other things. And I must point out to you that, as my flame-less candles die, I’m heading back to the real deal. Overall, I think wax is better than plastic and batteries, especially now that my kids know not to touch fire.

The little village you can see on the shelf is one that my dad started with the lighthouse. He and my step-mom always had a village under their tree. He’d even made a sledding hill for the little figures out of batting, and an ice skating pond out of a mirror. Now we have two different sets, and I let the girls play with them and just have at it. I don’t really live in a house with precious things, you know?

Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House Tour I always do some sort of little artwork for the month on this chalkboard. Clementine really wanted to do December’s. Since she’s five, I figured it would be pretty much indecipherable, but she went and surprised me with Santa’s sleigh. That girl is full of surprises, let me tell you.

Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House Tour We made these Mason jar/Epsom salt snow globes last year, and they were a total Pinterest success. I love them!

This year, I did zero holiday crafts with my girls. Zero. Some years are like that. And that’s okay.

Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House Tour Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House Tour Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House Tour Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House Tour The swag in the frame is also Clementine’s handiwork.

Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House Tour Christmas 2014, Fresh Scratch, House TourI added a few plaid bows {which I’ll keep up all winter} to the snowshoes on the wall in our family room, and my favorite garland to Harold’s antlers – I got him at Cost Plus World Market, by the way. He’s a real conversation piece and is hanging above our wood stove. I think he really enjoyed his first episode ever of Downton Abbey last night. I always love catching up with Lady Mary, don’t you?

Ready or not, it’s time to get back to the routine. Good luck out there!


mrs. fresh scratch

oh, fudge.

Fresh Scratch, Cookie Party, Cookie Exchange

Happy Christmas Eve-Eve.

Every year, about a week before Christmas, I host a cookie exchange party with all of my gal pals. I love this party for so many reasons, many of which can be summed up in the following three words: treats, cocktails, and laughter {though not necessarily in that order}. One year even found us at my computer, many cocktails to the wind, giggling and googling old pictures of Billy Baldwin {or was it Steven? Who knows.}.

Ah, the holidays.

Fresh Scratch, Cookie Party, Cookie Exchange Fresh Scratch, Cookie Party, Cookie Exchange Fresh Scratch, Cookie Party, Cookie Exchange Fresh Scratch, Cookie Party, Cookie ExchangeThe cool thing about my cookie party, if I do say so myself, is that I really don’t care if my friends bring cookies or not. It’s truly just an excuse to get them to my house so I can hug them and offer them libations so that we can all laugh and laugh! How about that for honesty?

We always have The Fresh Scratch on hand, and this year I tried enticing them with my hot buttered rum, too. Emily brought along her now infamous candy cane vodka tonics {recipe here}, and I think it’s safe to say we all enjoyed ourselves. The lady who didn’t have to drive home {ahem} may have enjoyed herself a little more than the others. Just a little.

To make this evening easy for myself, I don’t go nuts when making my own goodies. In fact, I usually opt to make fudge.

To be precise, I make my sweet friend Callie’s mom’s fudge {hi, callie! i heart you! xoxo hi, nancy! thanks for letting me share this with the world!}. Before I tried Nancy’s fudge in college, I really didn’t love fudge. We always had walnuts in ours growing up, and, you know, I pretty much detest walnuts. Nancy’s fudge is smooth as silk and is very easy to make. It melts in your mouth. I definitely know this from lots of experience in eating it!

And, yes, I am giving you the recipe today {you knew that was coming, didn’t you?}, the day before Christmas Eve. Which may seem kind of late. But hear me out.

There’s always one more gift, right? The neighbor you forgot. The hostess gift you forgot. The oh-crap-you-want-me-to-bring-dessert? moment. And you know you sure don’t want to go back out there into the h-e-double-hockey-sticks that is every store in town right now, do you?

That’s what I thought.

Happy Christmas!

xoxo ho ho ho, mrs. fresh scratch

A smooth and perfectly sweet fudge that comes together oh-so-easily.
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Prep Time
20 min
Total Time
2 hr
Prep Time
20 min
Total Time
2 hr
  1. 12 ounces of chocolate chips
  2. 1/2 cup of butter
  3. 1 pound of powdered sugar
  4. 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  5. 2 Tbsp. vanilla
  1. In a double boiler, melt the chocolate chips and butter together.
  2. In a small separate bowl, temper the eggs by slowly whisking some of the hot chocolate and butter mixture in with a fork.
  3. Add egg mixture to chocolate and butter mixture.
  4. Pour everything into your mixer.
  5. Add sugar and vanilla and beat until smooth.
  6. Pour into a greased 9x13 pan. Spread.
  7. Chill for about two hours or until firm.
Adapted from Nancy Floyd
Adapted from Nancy Floyd
Fresh Scratch