Easy Mulled Wine + My Grandmothers Christmas Fudge Recipe

Hi Friends! Its FINALLY Friday and this little mamma couldn’t be happier. Only a few more sleeps until Christmas is in full swing. I am so excited. Beckett is so much more fun this year, last year he loved the wrapping paper more than anything. This year he knows who Santa is and obviously loves toys. It is so amazing to see the magic in his eyes during this time. It gives me all the Christmas feels. Today we are talking mulled wine and fudge. My favorite holiday drink and my grandmothers fudge recipe. It is so beyond yum and it is just NOT Christmas without it. Do you guys have a favorite holiday recipe that your family makes every year? Share with me below in the comments as I am always looking for new recipes. Enjoy this Easy Mulled Wine + My Grandmothers Christmas Fudge Recipe.img_2549 Have you guys made mulled wine before? It is so yum and I love it because it gets me in the holiday spirit and makes the house smell amazing. You can buy mulling spices from World Market or from William Sonoma. You can also make your own, I have tagged a recipe here. I have found that it is a lot more work to make yourself when you can just buy the same spices all ready to go.

All you have to do is get a large pot, add 1 bottle of red wine. Menage a Trois is my absolute favorite which you can also get at World Market. Add about 3 tablespoons of mulling spices to the wine followed by a 1/3 cup of sugar (you can adjust this depending on how sweet you like it). Simmer for about 15 minutes. Serve in a cute mug with a few cinnamon sticks. If you are feeling extra festive you can add orange slices and fresh cranberries. Serve and ENJOYimg_2552You can also use mulling spices to make:
Smell of Christmas jars
Potpourri for your home
Spiced syrup
Spiced Hot tea
Spiced hot ciderimg_2507Grandma’s Fudge Recipe

Ingredients:
4 1/2 C. Sugar
1 Can Evaporated Milk
8 oz. or 7 oz. jar Marshmallow Cream
2 Cubes Butter
3 Small packages of Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips
2 Cups Nuts (optional)
1 Teaspoon Vanilla

Pour sugar and milk in a large pan. Bring to a boil slowly. Boil for 10 minutes stirring constantly. Pour remaining ingredients in a bowl. Pour sugar and milk mixture into a bowl with other ingredients. Stir until smooth. Pour into a buttered 9×13 pan.img_1899
Merry Christmas from my little family to yours! I hope you all have a magical time with the kiddos. Don’t forget to put your phone down and enjoy the people you are with. Engage and be present! Thank you so much stopping by today, I appreciate each and every one of you. I hope its the best.
Xo, Andie

Here are a few other posts you may want to check out:

Quick + Easy DIY Spiked Hot Cocoa
DIY White Washed Potted Succulent-Teacher Gift
Simple & Modern DIY Christmas Wrapping Ideas
Modern DIY Christmas Ornaments In Less Than 5 Minutes
Modern DIY Christmas Wreath In 3 Easy Steps
Cozy Christmas Tree in 7 Easy Steps

 

 

 

Quick + Easy DIY Spiked Hot Cocoa

Hi Loves! How is everyone? I hope you are all ready for Christmas. I am ALMOST THERE. Ugh so much wrapping to still get done. I am hoping to get everything complete here in the next couple days so that I can enjoy Christmas and not be stressed at the last minute. Do you need a last minute gift idea that you can do yourself? I wanted to share with you guys today a Quick and Easy DIY Spiked Hot Cocoa Recipe. Every year my husband and I choose a DIY gift to make for our friends and family. This year we chose Spiked Hot Cocoa and Homemade Salsa. We got these done so quickly and it is the perfect thing to do as a last minute little gift. You probably have most of the ingredients at home already and you may even have some mason jars you can use laying around.Quick + Easy DIY Spiked Hot Cocoa

Supplies:
12 oz Mason Jars
Baileys Minis
Twine
Gift Tag of choice
– 2 teaspoons Corn Starch
– 1 1/2 Cups Dry Milk
-1/2 Cup Sugar
-1/2 Cup unsweetened cocoa powder
-Chocolate Chips
-Marshmallows

*Double or triple the recipe if you need more based on how many jars you are looking to makeQuick + Easy DIY Spiked Hot Cocoa
Combined the Corn Starch, Dry Milk, Sugar, and Cocoa Powder in a big bowl. Mix until thoroughly combined. Add your dry ingredients into your mason jar. I would fill it a little more than half way so that you have room for the chocolate chips and the marshmallows at the top. Next top the jar off with your chocolate chips and marshmallows. I then tied the mini Baileys to the jar with some twine and added a tag that had the instructions on how to make it on it. 

To Make Tag to Read: Add 3 tablespoons of mix to 8oz milk or water into a saucepan and stir. Simmer on med/low for 2 minutes. Serve with chocolate chips, marshmallows, and Irish cream. ENJOY!Quick + Easy DIY Spiked Hot CocoaQuick + Easy DIY Spiked Hot Cocoa

Aren’t these just the cutest. Everyone is going to need a good spiked hot cocoa on Christmas so I thought this was the perfect little gift for my friends and family. I love how simple and easy these are. I hope that you will give these a try. You can get creative with the twine and tags. You can stamp them or draw something festive on them.Quick + Easy DIY Spiked Hot Cocoa

I hope you all have an amazing week. I hope you all slow down a little and take in all the great things around you. I always get so bogged down by the Christmas madness and I don’t take enough time sit back and enjoy all the simple things. Take time to appreciate peoples expressions, the smells in the air, the cold or warmth that surrounds you. Most of all just be present. Put your phones down and engage with people! Thank you so much for stopping by today and I hope you are enjoying this holiday season as much as I am. 

Xo, Andie

Here are a few other DIY projects you may want to check out:

DIY White Washed Potted Succulent-Teacher Gift
Simple & Modern DIY Christmas Wrapping Ideas
Modern DIY Christmas Ornaments In Less Than 5 Minutes
Modern DIY Christmas Wreath In 3 Easy Steps
Cozy Christmas Tree in 7 Easy Steps

Pin This Quick + Easy DIY Spiked Hot Cocoa For Later:Quick + Easy DIY Spiked Hot Cocoa

Trader Joe’s Must-Haves for Kids

I thought I would take a break from all of the festive holiday posting, and share some Trader Joe’s kids favorites that your babes will go crazy for. Beckett is 1.5 so as most of you mammas know they are PICKY little guys. Trying to get him to eat a vegetable is like trying to get me to stop eating carbs, impossible. Trader Joe’s is probably my favorite places to shop for Beckett. They make everything quick, easy, and healthy which is exactly what this working mamma needs. I have definitely nailed down his favorites that are my go to every time we go shopping.

Veggie Sticks: These can be found in the chip isle. Beck goes nuts for these things. I love them because they are Vegan and Gluten Free. I always pack these when we are on the go in the diaper bag or for a quick daycare snack. You cant go wrong with these.

PB&J Bar: These can be found right across from the fruit section with the granola bars at the beginning of the store. Beck loves these granola bars. They taste exactly like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, without the mess. These are also gluten free. The only issue with these is you have to be careful eating these around other kids because of possible peanut allergies.

Butternut Squash Zig Zags: These can be found in the prepared food area where the chopped/bagged vegetables are. These are quick and easy to cook for your little one. They are washed and ready to go. They cook in the microwave in under 4 minutes. I love to add marinara and parmesan with them for Beckett and act like they are pasta. I love all of TJ’S ready to go food.

This “blueberry walks into a bar” Cereal Bar: These can be found right across from the fruit section with the granola bars at the beginning of the store. These can be a little messy but Beckett loves them. They are great for a quick breakfast or to throw in the diaper bag for an on the go snack. They have better ingredients in them then most cereal bars. They also come in other flavors but our favorite is blueberry. 

Organic Apple Mango Fruit Sauce Crushers: Located in the dry goods isle. These are probably my favorite on this list. They are my favorite because of the size of them. Beckett rarely finishes an entire pouch so the mini size of these is perfect for him. I cant even count the number of pouches I have thrown out because they weren’t finished. I don’t think we have ever thrown one of these out because they are the perfect serving size at 3.17 oz for him. They do have regular size pouches as well but we love these.

Uncured All Beef Hot Dog: Located in the meat section. These hot dogs are definitely Beckett’s favorite on the list. He eats these hot dogs (cut small of coarse) like they are candy. He has probably eaten 3 whole hot dogs in one sitting before. They are so much healthier than other hot dogs I have seen. Also Gluten free without a bunch nitrates added in. We have started calling other foods “hot dogs” so that Beckett will at least give it a try (oops cue the mom shamers)

Bamba Peanut Snacks: Located in the chip isle. These are so delicious even I eat them. They are basically a peanut flavored Cheeto puff. Our doctor recommended these to us to give to Beckett early on so that he was introduced to peanuts right away. Beckett has been hooked ever since. Also a great snack to take on the go. We cannot keep enough of these stocked in our house.

Turkey Meatballs: These are located in the frozen food section. They have a great selection of already cooked, frozen meatballs. We are currently loving the seasonal cranberry meatballs pictured here however these may be gone soon. We do love the regular turkey meatballs as well. They are great with marinara and are ready in 3 short minutes.

Organic Silver Dollar Pancakes: These are located in the frozen food isle. They are so good and just the right size for kids. I just pop them in toaster in morning and we are ready to head out the door. Beckett loves these with jelly or peanut butter on them. We love the size of them so you can easily make for a quick snack. These are a must have in our house.

Battered Fish Nuggets: These are located in the frozen food isle. Beckett will eat four or five of these in one sitting. The only downsize is they do take awhile to cook so just plan ahead for the 10-15 min cook time. He enjoys them with ketchup but will gobble them up plain as well. We have tried a few other brands and we just keep coming back to these  because of the small size of them and they have a shorter cook time than most others we have tried.

I hope you guys will go give these items a try. Please report back and let me know what your kiddos are loving. Also please share with me what some of your favorite Trader Joe’s items are for your kids. I am sure there is still lots to discover and I love trying out new items. I  love how they are always re inventing themselves with new items. It keeps grocery shopping a little bit more exciting.

Xo, Andie

Thankfulness, A Beautiful Table, and Pie

I am so excited for Thanksgiving which will be here in only two short days. Normally I start getting stressed out about the holidays because it normally entails lots of running around. This year we decided to stay home and enjoy four long glorious days off without running around. I am excited to enjoy every sweet minute of it with Beckett, Nick and of course some of our amazing family.

Photo By: Christina Roberts Photography

Today I am going to show you how to put together a beautiful Thanksgiving table in under 5 minutes, that’s right 5 minutes! I quickly gathered a few things I had lying around my house and literally threw them on my table. A table runner, eucalyptus, candlesticks, and pumpkins left over from Halloween. That’s all you need to get things looking festive and fun.

Table Runner: Mine is from a little vintage store in Placerville, California that my Dad used to shop at called Country Elegance. You can find these vintage doily table runners at lots of antique stores, or flea markets these days. Here is one I have have been eyeing from cost plus world market.

EucalyptusI bought one bunch of Eucalyptus at Trader Joe’s yesterday when I went grocery shopping but you can just go out in your yard and clip whatever greenery you can find. Look for something with unique, geometric leaves. I have an olive branch tree in my back yard that I use for my home decor all the time.

Candlesticks: My candlesticks are from the Alameda Flea Market. If you have a local, vintage flea market nearby you should definitely go every once and awhile and pick up some fun vintage items, like candlesticks, for dirt cheap. Check these ones out from target that I have been eyeing.

Pumpkins: You know where to find these. My chevron pumpkin in the center is from the Target dollar spot. If you don’t know about the Target dollar spot you are missing out. You can get coffee mugs, home decor, kids toys, and so much more for cheap.

Plates: Mine are from Crate and Barrel. They come in all colors

Napkins: These are from Cost Plus World Market. They have the best napkins with such fun prints.

Silverware: I have a vintage gold set that was handed down to me from my grandma but you can use whatever matching set you have. Check out this swoon worthy set from West Elm.

I also wanted to share with you guys my moms perfected apple pie recipe that is so amazing and easy. We are BIG Apple Pie people in my family so this is just a no-brainer when it comes to the holidays. A little ice cream on top and I am in pie heaven. Nick and I actually served pie at our wedding instead of cake because we are obsessed. Please give this recipe a try. You will thank me later.

9″ Pie Crust 

-2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
-heaping 1/2 teaspoon salt
-1 teaspoon sugar
-3/8 teaspoon baking powder
-7 tablespoons oil: canola, vegetable, olive, your choice
-1/4 cup cold water

Instructions:
-Whisk together the flour, salt, sugar, and baking powder
-Whisk together the oil and water, then pour over the dry ingredients
-Stir with a fork until the dough is evenly moistened (you may need to add more water if it is not at a doughy consistency)
-Pat the dough across the bottom of the pie pan and up the sides. A flat-bottomed measuring cup or glass will help smooth out the bottom
-Crimp the edge, or flatten with the tines of a fork

Filling

-4 lbs Newtown Pippin or Mutsu apples (or you can use a mix of your choice)
-1/4 cup granulated sugar
-1/4 tsp. cinnamon
-Juice of 1/2 lemon

Instructions: Peel, core and cut the apples into 1/4″ slices. Toss with the lemon juice. Combine the sugar and cinnamon and toss with the apples. Arrange the apples on top of the pie crust, with the points facing down.

Streusel Topping
-1 cup all-purpose flour
-1/2 cup brown sugar
-1/2 cup granulated sugar
-1/4 tsp. cinnamon
-3/4 cup (6 oz.) butter

Instructions: Place dry ingredients in a food processor, pulse to mix. Add butter and pulse until crumbly. Pour streusel topping on top of apples, pressing down onto the slices. The streusel should cover the apples completely.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Tent the pie loosely with foil. Place on lower rack of oven. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove foil, transfer to center rack and bake for 1 hour until apples are softened, but slightly firm when tested with a skewer. Cool on rack for at least an hour before serving.

I hope you all have the best Thanksgiving. Take the time to focus on GRATITUDE this week. Hug your loved ones tight and let them know how much you love them as often as it crosses your mind.

“Be present in all things and thankful for all things”-Maya Angelou

XO, Andie