Friday, November 28, 2014

friday favorites

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday! We walked to my in-laws’ house, and enjoyed a really nice meal together. Another highlight of my day was face-timing with my extended family in Minneapolis!

Ephraim loved his first Thanksgiving, I think :)  And today he is 10 months-old! Stop, time, stop!

Little man is always finding trouble. He loves to play with Ivy’s dishes and dump out the water onto the floor. He knows he’s not supposed to, so he is all SMILES while he does it. :)

A couple of nights ago, he was playing Peekaboo with me on the changing table. It was ADORABLE.

As for Mr. Nolan, he is as fun and frustrating as ever! He is so sweet and says the funniest things, but the boy can throw a three-year-old fit like the best of them!

We had beautiful weather on Monday. It gave Nolan a chance to play in the sandbox, and gave me a chance to clean up the backyard a bit. We saw a double rainbow even though we didn’t have rain!

This week, I just can’t get enough hot drinks. Coffee, tea, hot chocolate—all day long. I tried a free sample of Gevalia from It was pretty strong, but good. Swedish things make me happy. :)

Plumb has a new hit on the radio, “Lord, I’m Ready Now”. I’ve been listening to her since junior high, and she is still writing such great songs! I’ve got this one on repeat now. But I suppose today I am breaking out my favorite Amy Grant Christmas CDs :)


Enjoy the weekend!! Here’s to finding some awesome Black Friday/Small Business Saturday/Cyber Monday deals!

Follow me on Instagram @floralandfudge

Linking up for Friday Favorites with Andrea, Erika, & Narci.


Thursday, November 27, 2014


Happy Thanksgiving from this little guy on his first turkey holiday!

I am so very thankful that he joined us this year, and has brought immeasurably more joy into our lives.

I am so very thankful for his loud, energetic, adventurous older brother, who keeps me on my toes all day long.

I am thankful for their daddy, who complements me so perfectly. He is always ready with advice, perspective, or encouragement. And he calls me beautiful on days when I feel nothing of the sort.

I am thankful for a God who continues to forgive my mistakes, even when I make the same ones over and over. His mercies are new every morning, and I will continue to listen to His plan for my life.

I am thankful for my entire extended family. It is not easy for me to be so far away on holidays, and I hope they know that my heart is right there with them.

I am thankful for the many friends in my life. Again, I live at a distance from the majority of them, but I share in their excitement over their marriages, new babies, and job opportunities. I can’t wait for future reunions!

I am thankful for our cozy house that accommodates us so well, for the pantry full of food, for our silly dog, for snow-laced trees, hazelnut coffee, warm winter scarves, and all good things that I take for granted.


H A P P Y   T H A N K S G I V I N G!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

the best blackberry pie

The Best Blackberry Pie 
One of the very first things that I learned about my mother-in-law, Alice, is that she makes an incredible blackberry pie. It is sweet and deliciously tart with a soft, flaky homemade crust. The best part is that the pie is nice and solid when you cut into it, so that the fruit filling doesn’t ooze out onto the plate. Alice credits the origins of the blackberry pie to her mother-in-law, Steve’s Grandma Gloria, who passed away in May. And now it’s not a holiday without blackberry pie and a dollop of vanilla bean ice cream on top.

Alice came over on Monday to teach me how to roll the dough and assemble the pies (we doubled the recipe to make two). I brought one to my MOPS group yesterday, and Steve and I have been quickly chipping away at the second. :)

I’ll let you in on this famous family recipe. You’re going to love it!

2 cups sifted flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 Tablespoons cold water

4 cups blackberries
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 Tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon lemon juice

The Best Blackberry Pie


In a large bowl, combine blackberries (can be slightly frozen still), 1 cup sugar, cornstarch, salt, cinnamon, and lemon juice. Set aside.

In another bowl, combine flour and salt. Next add oil, and mix until grainy. Sprinkle with water. Mix to moisten. Add another tablespoon or two if the dough seems like it needs to be softer or more pliable.

The Best Blackberry Pie
The Best Blackberry Pie
The Best Blackberry Pie
Form dough into two balls or patties. Use the larger half for the bottom pie crust. Roll out each half between 2 pieces of wax paper.

  The Best Blackberry Pie
Remove one piece of wax paper from the larger rolled-out dough. Place the dough paper-side up in a 9-inch pie pan. Peel off the paper. Press the dough into the pan. Trim, leaving a 1/2” overhang. Fold under.

  The Best Blackberry Pie
Pour in the filling. Cut up little pieces of butter and scatter them on top of the filling.

With a knife, make slits into the top half of the dough. Unpeel the wax paper, and lay the dough over the pie filling. Trim, leaving a 1/2” overhang. Fold under and flute edges.

The Best Blackberry Pie
Bake at 400 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.

The Best Blackberry Pie  The Best Blackberry Pie  The Best Blackberry Pie The Best Blackberry Pie

Try and enjoy!!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Linking up with Andrea for Recipe Club.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

friday favorites

Happy Friday! 

I don’t know about you, but I am pretty beat at the end of this week. We don’t have any plans this weekend, so I’m hoping for some time to relax and catch up on projects, reading, and what not. Here are my favorites from the week:

I have to take a proud mom moment :)

The boys are getting so smart! Nolan’s sentences have gotten really elaborate, and some of his thoughts are incredibly imaginative and funny! He will occasionally break into “Super Nolan” mode. He will shout, “Super Nolan to the rescue!”, raise his arms, and run around the room. When he does this, he gives us a running commentary of everything he’s doing, and refers to us as Super Mommy and Super Daddy. And when that boy gets an idea in his head—he is bound and determined for the rest of the day to get what he wants. 

As for Ephraim, he has started to sign “more” when he is ready for the next bite! And if he does something that makes me laugh, he will do it over and over again, watch for my reaction, and then laugh with me. It’s precious!

My favorite face! He puffs up his cheeks and blows air. It’s absolutely darling, and makes me laugh!

I had the pleasure of meeting one of my favorite bloggers on Saturday! I won a giveaway on Kacia’s blog, Coconut Robot, to attend a day conference for moms. I had lunch with Kacia (and her adorable two-month-old Jones), and she could not have been sweeter!

Steve picked me up from the conference, and on the way home, we stopped at Chick-fil-a for some soft serve. :)

There has been major work going on in our kitchen! I mentioned that we are a little obsessed with the show “Rehab Addict”. A couple of times this week, I headed out to the store or out to lunch with friends, and I came home to see pieces of the kitchen gone. As if Steve doesn’t have enough work to do :)  Our kitchen is from the 50’s—and I was pretty happy to see the scalloped wood pieces taken down.

He tore out the drop ceiling above all the cabinets. He also took out a couple of shelves, the accordion doors of the pantry, and a panel above the fridge.

It looks awesome, but there is disgusting peeling paint that needs to be dealt with soon!

We also lost a big chunk of the wall on Wednesday afternoon, haha.

I made a couple of free printables this week. Feel free to right-click and save them to your computer. I typically have them printed on cardstock at Staples, and they turn out really nice for my walls. I needed a little Thanksgiving reminder for this week!

Free Print: Always Be Thankful 

And another:

Free Print: Represent Him Well
This one I had posted before, but tweaked it a little bit since then.  It hangs next to our back door, as a reminder to be Jesus-like in our actions as we interact with people outside the house.

I have been meaning to share a final tally of what we grew in our garden this summer. I was waiting for all of the crops to be done before I posted—and we were still getting raspberries last week! Now that it’s terribly cold and snowy, I figure we aren’t getting anything else. :)

2581 raspberries!!
5 pumpkins (including one large, 22 pounder)
950 green beans
9 spaghetti squash
66 tomatoes (although most had been affected by some kind of blight)
27 zucchini
47 cucumbers
11 carrots
0 peppers—they never came up!
This was our very first garden, and I was going to be content if we only had one or two good vegetables. It came to the point in September where I had more green beans, cucumbers, and zucchini than I knew what to do with! I can’t wait to start again next May :)

Thanks for stopping by today. Hope your weekend is full of relaxation and hot chocolate! 

Follow me on Instagram @floralandfudge
Linking up for Friday Favorites with Andrea, Erika, & Narci.


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