Tag: cocktails

into the woods.

Fresh Scratch, Rosemary Meyer Lemon Drop

Finally, a new season. Winter, how the heck are ya?! I’m coming at you from my hiding spot this week in a log cabin in the middle of Idaho, wood stove going, wrapped in a quilt, flannel pajama pants on, surrounded by snow and books and good company. This is my reset button.

In other words, hello – it’s me. I’m back. I’m happy. I’m more than okay. I want to thank you for all of your thoughtful words after my last post an entire season ago. I shouldn’t have been so surprised by all the people who reached out to me – because I am a lucky girl who has all the best people – but I was touched in a way that may sound odd, given the circumstances. Those of you who have had the experience of walking down the aisle to get married may know what I mean: you looked at all the people smiling at you and felt so loved. So supported. I know this wasn’t that, but it felt the same somehow. I still have all that matters.

After sharing the news with you that my family was changing, the sands beneath my feet really shifted in a matter of days; things went from bad to worse, and I truly needed all the nice things you said, all the hugs, all the good vibes. I didn’t think anything would bring me more consuming grief than losing my dad, but these events did. They brought the heat in a not-nice way. But you know what? It’s in those kinds of battles where we become warriors.

I feel stronger than ever. I feel resolute. I feel solid. I feel more kind. My girls are thriving. I got that house I was hoping for – gingerbread and all – and we’ve settled into a new normal over the last six weeks or so. It feels right. And if I can just follow what feels right and never stray from that, I’m golden.

Fresh Scratch, winter field

I was getting tired of just surviving, and I was really starting to miss the things that make me feel twinkly {is that a word? who cares! it is now.}. Then a couple weeks ago, the snow just started dumping on my drive home. I had stuck my big camera up high in my closet upon moving in, but on this day I dragged in the stool, climbed up, and greeted my old buddy. As we walked toward that pretty field up there, I felt something familiar: excitement. It’d been a while. I snapped that shot and just knew my magic was back. Just like you know all the things you just know.

Here’s what happened after:

I thought of this.

I sat in front of the Christmas tree I had cut down by myself {so much harder than it looks! the girls made so much fun of me, especially when I said, “Quit talking! I am trying to cut down this tree!”}, read a book {I just finished this one, and just started that one}, and remembered this.

I recreated my exact cookie party components from last year, then had like 20+ of my ladies over to my house on a school night, where we boozed it up and got so loud I had to shout across the kitchen to Emily. It felt like a christening of laughter for my house. Promptly at 9:30, they all went home. That’s how we moms party.

And now I’m at the cabin. Because in the quiet moments of my storm, I knew that this was the place to wash ashore.

What’s next? Well, checking on the fire, for starters.

The rest is wide open.

Thanks for making my heart grow three times as big.

xoxo, ms. fresh scratch



cocktails & cookies.

Fresh Scratch, Rosemary Meyer Lemon Drop

Last week I held my favorite soiree of the year: my annual cookie swap with all my ladies. But I’m going to be honest here and tell you: it’s really a cocktail party with cookies.

Before I go sharing my two newest concoctions with you, let me tell you that if you’ve suddenly found that you’re in need of some last-minute gifts, these couldn’t be simpler. The cookies would be great in a tin {reuse one of the many that have already made their way through your front door this month!}, hugged by a bit of parchment. And I can vouch that a bit of rosemary simple syrup in a half-pint mason jar, accompanied by one Meyer lemon, a recipe card, and a mini-bottle of vanilla vodka is a delightfully unexpected thank you to hand off to your dog groomer, your mailman, your waxing lady, your hairdresser…your you-name-it.

Fresh Scratch, Ritzy Rolo CookieWhile surfing around on Pinterest for an ungodly amount of time when I was home with my broken leg, I came across these little numbers. They were terrific as they were, but I think they’re even better with double the chocolate-caramel action. I think you might agree.

Ritzy Rolo Cookies
Buttery, Salty, Caramely, and Chocolaty. Your mouth will thank you. Oh! And they're a breeze to make. Did I mention that?
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
3 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
3 min
  1. Ritz Crackers
  2. Rolos {unwrapped}
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees with the rack in the middle of the oven.
  2. Cover a cookie sheet with a single layer of Ritz crackers, salty-side up.
  3. Place two Rolos next to one another on each cracker.
  4. Bake for 3 minutes.
  5. Smoosh the melted Rolos down with another Ritz cracker, salty-side down.
  6. Let cool.
Fresh Scratch http://freshscratch.net/
Fresh Scratch, Rosemary Meyer Lemon DropThis lemon drop in this exact iteration was a happy accident. I had asked Matt to get two dozen lemons at the store for my cookie party cocktails. He came back with two dozen Meyer lemons. Pricey, but, in the end, so worth it. It’s like one of the best things I’ve ever tasted.

I think the cookie party mavens may have liked it just a tad, too, as the pitcher was totally gone by the time my last guest left, leaving me to, um, well, make more.

Rosemary Meyer Lemon Drop
Woodsy, Sweet, and Sour, all at once. A Christmas miracle, I tell you. The amounts are kept vague so that you can easily adapt this to any size.
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Prep Time
1 hr
Prep Time
1 hr
  1. Sugar
  2. Rosemary, chopped
  3. Meyer lemon, juiced
  4. Vanilla vodka
First, the Rosemary Simple Syrup
  1. Place equal parts sugar and water into a small sauce pan.
  2. Add 1 T chopped rosemary for every cup of sugar used.
  3. Over medium heat, cook until the sugar is dissolved.
  4. Cool completely, then strain out rosemary leaves.
  5. {This syrup will keep in a jar in the fridge for about 3 weeks.}
For the Cocktail
  1. Mix equal parts rosemary syrup, Meyer lemon juice, and vanilla vodka in an ice-filled shaker {no shaker? Just stir with ice in a big cup.}
  2. Pour into the glass of your choice, and garnish with a sprig of rosemary.
  1. For a more intense rosemary flavor, let the syrup cool on the counter overnight before straining.
Fresh Scratch http://freshscratch.net/
 Merry, merry!

xoxo, mrs. fresh scratch