Monday, August 31, 2015

Weekend Update

It's Monday, and it's my favorite day of the year! I turn twenty-eight today, and I'm excited to get the celebration started! We did a few fun things yesterday, since Steve has to work all day today. I'll be posting all about my birthday tomorrow. This past weekend was mainly focused on my friend Cathy's wedding on Saturday. Cathy asked me to be her matron of honor, and I had such a great time filling that role!

Cathy's story is one of redemption. She was married once before, and she has three children. Though she fought for her marriage, it ultimately had to end. Cathy has been a single mom for a few years--working, raising her kids, and caring for a special needs child. Recently, she reconnected with a friend from high school, Don. Don had never been married, and he had so many of the qualities that she was looking for in a husband, like kindness and patience. They were engaged in May, and set the date for August! It was a beautiful, simple wedding at our church, and we are so happy for Cathy and Don! Take a look at their big day:


Beautiful bride!

The girls, Rachael and Anna, looked adorable in their fancy purple dresses, and Corey did such a great job walking his mom down the aisle! :)


Thank you, Cathy, for letting me be a part of your special day! We wish you and Don all the best in your new life together!

For those of you who blog, Astleigh and I will be hosting another installment of the Every Girl Link-Up on Thursday! We'll all be sharing our fall d├ęcor, so get your photos ready! :)

Friday, August 28, 2015

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday, ya'll! (Can I say ya'll if I'm from Chicago??) This week with Steve back-to-school has been hard, but we have so much to look forward to this weekend! My friend Cathy is getting married tomorrow, and I am so excited to be a part of her wedding. It will be fun to dress up, have a night out, and celebrate a new marriage :)

Steve started school on Monday, and we are proud of him for entering his fifth year of teaching English and composition at the college level. (And it's his seventh year of grad school!) He told me on Monday that he switched right back into teacher mode, and he felt totally comfortable in front of his new students. #extrovert #meanttobeateacher ;)

Giving Daddy a good-luck hug and kiss.

On Tuesday, I shared the history of our dresser, and its new makeover. This weekend, I'm getting all my clothes organized and put away in this beauty!

I took some family photos for my friend Barbara a couple of weeks ago, and she gifted me with one of the bags that she makes and sells on Etsy. I chose this pretty floral drawstring backpack, and I'm excited to have a hands-free bag when I'm with my kids. 

Barbara's bags are repurposed from suit coats, jeans, trousers, and sweaters, and they are so fun! Check out her shop here.

If you are an Etsy shop and you're looking for some more exposure, I am working on a new "Partner" page that you can look at next week. Shoot me an email at for details. :)

Ephraim and I were at Walmart last night, and we discovered TONS of colorful statement jewelry on clearance for $3.00 a piece. I'm not sure if it's at every Walmart, but it's worth a peek!

This summer, my eyes have been opened to so many new plants and wildflowers. I just researched that this is pokeweed, and although I'm in awe of the beautiful colors, apparently it is toxic even to touch it!

Yesterday, I shared the recipe for my very favorite homemade fudge. It's an easy recipe so long as you have a candy thermometer, and it tastes as good as any fudge you'll find in a store or at the fair in the summertime :)

And my last favorite? My birthday is Monday! We are planning on doing a little bit of early celebrating this weekend. My guys always know how to make me feel special, so I know this year will be no different.

Look at how cute the boys were last year on my birthday! (Nolan was almost 3, and Ephraim was 7 months.)

 Have an awesome weekend, and I'll see you back here on Monday!

Follow along with us on Instagram @floralandfudge!

Linking up with Andrea, Erika, and Narci.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Getting Back to Basics

When my mom went to Mackinac Island in Michigan several years ago, she brought me back a souvenir--a fudge recipe book. I fell in love with this particular fudge recipe, and I even began selling it (along with jars of hot fudge sauce) at a few craft fairs. My kitchen was cranking out fudge left and right when I named this blog, "Floral and Fudge" three years ago. Selling the fudge never really panned out, so today I'm going to share this special recipe with you! 

These fudge bites are the perfect melt-in-your-mouth texture! And with Nestle semi-sweet chips, you always get the quintessential chocolate taste.

3 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter (1.5 sticks)
5 ounce can evaporated milk
12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate (I use Nestle Toll House chips)
7 ounces marshmallow cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

You are going to want a candy thermometer for this recipe.


Grease a 13x9 inch baking dish. 

Get your chocolate chips, marshmallow fluff, and vanilla unpackaged and ready-to-go because the mixing becomes time-sensitive at the end.

Combine butter, sugar, and evaporated milk in a saucepan. 

 Stir, and bring to a boil for several minutes until the thermometer reaches between 236 and 240 degrees (the soft ball stage). Remove from the heat.

Stir in the chocolate chips until melted. Then quickly add the marshmallow cream and vanilla. Beat until blended. 

Pour into the greased 13x9 inch baking dish. Smooth the top with a spatula. Cool at room temperature and then cut into squares.

This recipe makes three pounds.

So go get yourself a candy thermometer, and give this recipe a try ;)

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

The Purple Dresser Redo

The dresser in our bedroom has a sweet history. My grandparents bought it in the sixties and passed it along to my mom when she was a teenager. She painted it white with pink drawers. My mom took it with her when she married my dad, and he painted it brown for them. (He wrote a cute "I love you" message to her on the side of one of the drawers.) My sister and I inherited the dresser next, and when I was in high school, I painted it a deep purple to go with the color scheme of my room. It was my turn to take it with me when I got married, and after a couple of years, Steve and I were ready to change the color. Last summer, Steve got started on stripping the paint, but he never got a chance to finish before the winter. In the last few weeks, he pushed to get it done, and it just got moved back to our bedroom! :)


This was the color before Steve stripped off all of the brown, pink, white, and purple layers of paint. 


He used "Strypeeze" paint stripper to get all of the paint off. Then he sanded everything with an orbital sander.

At first, I thought we would just paint it a white or a mint color, but Steve was convinced it would look amazing if we stained it instead. We chose dark walnut, which is my current favorite.

I snapped a couple of photos of the fresh stain, before Steve finished it with a satin-finish polyurethane. There are such pretty grains in the wood--who knew, hidden under all that paint?!

And now we have a dresser again (after a year of my clothes being scattered on the floor)! :)

We have wood floors, wood trim, and wood doors in our room, and they all have slightly different tints (some are even reddish). We purposely didn't match the dresser to any of the other woods because we like the color of the walnut and it should fit in any future home we may have ;)

Of course, we kept the "I love you" from my Dad :)

Thanks so much, Steve, for all of your work on the dresser! I am completely in love with it, and I think it looks perfect in our bedroom.

Furniture redos can be addicting. It's so fun to give old things a new look! 

Here's to more projects! ;)


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