Simply Mrs. Edwards

{just the life of a new wife}


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Ginger Softies

Just a quick post to share a favorite Christmas cookie recipe. Although, I think they’re far too good to only make at Christmas! Hope you enjoy these ginger softies, as I fondly call them :)

Ginger Softies | Simply Mrs. Edwards

Ginger Softies

  • 2 c. sugar + extra for rolling cookies in
  • 1 1/2 c. softened butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 c. molasses
  • 4 1/2 c. flour
  • 4 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  1. Cream together sugar, softened butter, eggs, and molasses. Set aside.
  2. In a separate bowl sift flour, baking soda, ginger, cloves, and salt.
  3. Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture. Mix until just combined.
  4. Chill dough for about 30 minutes, or until firm.
  5. Shape into 1 inch balls and roll in sugar to coat. Place on greased sheet pans about 2 inches apart.
  6. Bake at 350 F for 8-12 minutes, or until set. Be careful not to bake these too long! You’ll want to pull them out when they start to crack and still have some moisture on the top.
  7. Cool on wire racks and ENJOY!

These cookies could make a perfect snack for a certain white bearded jolly man :)

Ginger Softies | Simply Mrs. Edwards

I hope that you have a great Christmas with those who you love the most!

Holly & jolly,
Mrs. Edwards


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Son of a Nutcracker!

Since we’re only about 1 day from Christmas, I figured it was high time that I shared about our Christmas decorations! The past few years we’ve had a tree, some garland, and wreath on the door. I’d say my efforts were a mediocre 3 on the scale of Christmas cheer. But this year, gosh. This year is a solid 8.  We upped our game and brought the Christmas cheer in full force this year!

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

Thanks to Josh’s awesome handiwork, we added this amazing backlit star this year. We were inspired by this one on Beyond The Picket Fence and couldn’t wait to create our own. Because we had a big open space to work with, we made ours a bit larger and added some sweet backlighting. The wood is from a reclaimed picket fence that Josh found and cleaned up. After Christmas, we’re thinking of repurposing the boards into another art project. Promise I’ll share those details when it’s time!

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

The star is a simple square that Josh fastened onto 2″ x 2″ pieces behind. It’s backlit with a strand of leftover Christmas lights. The only thing we purchased for this project was a $3 spool of ribbon! A pretty great project if you ask me! :)

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. EdwardsI’ve been seeing a ton of fun chalkboard ideas all over, but since my chalk hand writing leaves a lot to be desired, I cheated a bit and used this transfer trick to write the Christmassy message below. If you doubt your writing skills, I highly recommend this transfer technique! The only thing I did differently was use a chalk pen to fill in my lines instead of regular chalk. My finished product may not look as rustic as it could, but I was lacking the patience and steady hand necessary to trace over the whole thing in smear-able chalk. I may re-do this again with real chalk someday, but I’m perfectly happy with the way this version turned out!

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Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

Last year I made this fun Christmas card wreath out of a pack of Dollar Tree clothes pins, a little green spray paint, some red beads, some bailing wire, and red ribbon. One of the easiest projects ever! I’m happy to say that since this photo was taken we’ve filled up the entire wreath with fun cards from family and friends!

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Among other fine qualities, our house has a really odd living room with multiple doors on each wall. The only place that our TV fits is right in front of a coat closet that we don’t really use. I got tired of people asking why our TV was in front of a door, so earlier this year I made a curtain to hang in front of the door. This was also the point in which I got fed up with our dark redwood walls and decided to cover 2 walls in burlap. Thankfully both projects turned out great and we no longer receive weird comments or looks when someone comes into our house!

Thanks to some scissor wielding friends who were over one night, we ended up with a stack of beautiful paper snowflakes that were just begging to be displayed. It only made sense to hang them in front of the curtain that’s in front of the coat closet door. Duh, right? Thankfully, that experiment turned out great too!

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

If  you’re on Pinterest, it’s very likely that you’ve seen tutorials on how to replicate mercury glass with mirrored spray paint and a spray bottle of vinegar/water. Well, I took a stab at it with some vases and candle holders and kind of failed. When they say that you MUST use the Krylon mirrored spray paint for it to turn out, they’re not kidding. I used some Rustoleum silver spray paint and my pieces turned out lacking some pizzaz (I’m pretty sure that’s the first time I’ve ever used the word pizzaz…) I honestly really like how these vases and candle holders turned out, but they’re nothing like real or faux mercury glass. I think it has to do with the air temperature I was spray painting in and that I used the wrong type of spray paint. Oh well, ya win some, ya fail some.

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

I really like the arrangement and that I get to display it on some antique doilies from my Mom. The view below is my absolute favorite this year! It’s what I see every night sitting on the couch :)

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

Here are a few photos of the living room as a whole (this room is hard to photograph!)…

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards
Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

Although we spend the majority of our time in the living room, a little bit of Christmas cheer spilled over into the dining room too. On the china hutch I simply hung some paper garland that I made last year…

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All it is is circle punches of scrap booking paper and Trader Joe’s bags sewed together…seriously, so simple.

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

The other thing I added is a Merry Christmas banner that we got at Target a few years back hanging on an old window from my parent’s house. Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards IMG_3266

My favorite Christmas tradition so far has been buying a Christmas ornament from our travels throughout the year. Hopefully someday our tree will be filled with ornaments from around the country and world! These three are from our trips in 2012:

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards

These ornaments and many others were placed on our tree with love and care while we donned our antler headbands and turned on a Christmas movie. Ahh, I love tradition!

So, did you up your decorating game in 2012? What is your favorite Christmas tradition? Can you believe that Christmas is TOMORROW?!

Singing loud for all to hear,
Mrs. Edwards

P.S. Here’s our 2012 Christmas Card! Designed by the one and only, Josh Edwards :)

Christmas at the Edwards | Simply Mrs. Edwards


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A Homemade Holiday: Hot Cocoa and Chai Mixes

I realize that the Holidays are now officially over, but I wanted to share how we celebrated. We were blessed to spend some time with both Josh’s family in Oceanside and then with my family back in Santa Cruz. It was a whirlwind, but so good and so fulfilling. For gifts this year, my brilliant sister-in-law Sarah came up with the idea of “a hand made (or tools to hand make) holiday.” It turned out to be my favorite gift giving (and receiving!) year ever! Let’s just say that my craft room gained a few incredibly helpful tools and Josh’s shop expanded a bit too. We had so much fun coming up with projects for our family- like a picnic table and benches, doll house furniture, art pieces and homemade goodies. Of course, Pinterest inspired a lot of what I did- like making button letter art, sewing paper garland and painting mason jar lids with chalkboard paint.

One of the things I did for our families was make homemade Hot Cocoa and Chai mixes. These were also inspired by Pinterest- link here (although I didn’t follow those recipes). It was a hit! The process was really quite simple and the products are delicious. I hope you enjoy these tasty drinks as much as my family and I do!

Hot Cocoa

  • 10 cups nonfat dry milk powder
  • 4 3/4 cups sifted powdered sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 3/4 cups powdered non-dairy creamer

Chai (I doubled this recipe)

  • 1 cup nonfat dry milk powder
  • 1 cup powdered non-dairy creamer
  • 1 cup French vanilla flavored powdered non-dairy creamer
  • 2 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened instant tea (like Nestea)
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom (*can be expensive at grocery stores, I found mine at Cost Plus World Market for $3.99 a bottle!)

Directions (same for each recipe):

  1. Combine ingredients in a large bowl
  2. In small batches, blend the mixture in a blender to thoroughly combine and break down the ingredients (I used an off-brand bullet blender)
  3. Store in an airtight container
  4. Mix 2-3 tablespoons of your mixture with hot water and ENJOY! I like to mix a little Hot Cocoa and Chai together…yum!

This was a hit for Christmas and will be enjoyed throughout the chilly winter season. My favorite is to come home after a day of work and enjoy a nice warm cup of goodness. Speaking of…I may make some right now! :)

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas season celebrated with loved ones!

Full of warm deliciousness,
Mrs. Edwards