Kids Christmas Cookie Decorating Party

You know those celebs that sign up to do bikini photo shoots like three months after having a baby as “motivation” to get back in shape? And we all think they’re crazy? I mean they are…let’s all be honest. Well, I kind of had a moment like that when planning a kids Christmas cookie decorating party this year. I had had it in my head for a while and thought, “oh it can’t be that hard!” And then in looking at the dates was like, “ya! Let’s do it super early in December like right after Thanksgiving.” And then it hits me that that means the whole house would also need to be done and decorated before I even started on party prep – mind you we would be gone until the Sunday after Thanksgiving on a two day road trip with a 14 month old and a dog…motivation right? ūüôā But this adorable party was SO WORTH IT! And truly, the party prep was nothing. Especially when you blast Christmas tunes the whole time.

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DIY Thanksgiving Leftover Bags

Get those leftovers out of my house!! Ok, maybe I’ll keep a couple of cookies and some stuffing ūüôā But seriously, we all know Thanksgiving is even better the second day around – a roll, some turkey, top it with some stuffing and a dab of cranberry? Forgeddaboutit. But if you’re having the typical American Thanksgiving, there will be enough food to feed five times the amount of people you actually have…that just means you’ve done Thanksgiving right in my book…NO SHAME. So on top of¬†everything else you’re doing to host (or attend!!), snag some Dollar Tree bags, an armload of Chinese take out boxes from Michaels or drop down the tupperware aisle at Target and make these unforgettable Thanksgiving leftover bags to entice those guests (and yourself) that you CAN fit just ONE MORE piece of pie in there.

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Thanksgiving Tablescape

I’m a sucker for a good tablescape. They are so dang fun to create and there’s so many ways to make them special and unique. And you don’t have to be hosting a dinner party to have one! Creating a tablescape is an easy and inexpensive way to add a festive flair to your home. I love how mine came together this¬†year for our Friendsgiving and am still enjoying those gorgeous colors now!

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The Makings of A Great Friendsgiving

“I get by with a little help from my friends.” This has definitely been my theme song this year. I don’t know about you, but for my husband and I, our friends become our family, or “framily.” It’s taken more effort to keep up with them all once our little girl came along but opportunities like Friendsgiving are a perfect way to get everyone together for great food, good wine and some nice hearty belly laughs. Here’s some of the activities that made our first Friendsgiving a success.

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Fall Decor That Doesn’t Break The Bank

It’s November!!! My all time favorite month. It’s brisk outside, you’re hyped up on candy from Halloween, you’ve finally nailed the perfect pumpkin cookie recipe (it only took me four tries) and the cuddly sweaters and slipper socks are coming out. What’s not to love? Oh ya, the huge hit your bank account is about to take because of the travel, gifts and the Christmas decorations that are on sale and you just can’t help yourself. But I was determined to get some fall spirit in this house and my husband was determined to keep me away from Michaels for a few weeks…the addiction is real y’all. We compromised…I only went once ūüôā So how do you get some fall in your house without breaking the bank?

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A Very Girly First Birthday Party

It happened. We raised a child without killing ourselves or said child for a whole year. Actually – I think we did surprisingly well ūüôā And that’s cause for celebration. If you’ve been keeping up with me from the beginning here you’ll know¬†we didn’t find out if we were having a girl or boy (see this post or this one if you want more details on gender-neutral baby world things) and we loved every moment of our beautiful surprise. That being said, I didn’t have any super girly or super boyish baby prep festivities. So for this little girl’s first birthday I decided to make up for it – the theme would be all things GIRLY. Bring on the pink, sparkle, flowers & frill!
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Bite Size Party Appetizers

It’s 2pm and you’re having a party. What to make!? Bite size apps my friend, bite size apps. These three super easy and super¬†yummy appetizers provide the perfect sophisticated assortment of food¬†and¬†still¬†fit perfectly on a toothpick – win win.

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A year in #momlife

This month has been a flurry of Pinteresting, Michaels trips, taste testing & crafting. Yes, that tends to be a normal month for me but this one is different. You see, in a week we will gather with our closest friends and family to celebrate baby girl’s first year in this world. A whole year figuring out this world and how to navigate it. With today being E’s actual birthday, I can’t help but think, “Well Melissa, how has your first year in #momlife been?” Let’s see, I knew there would be sleepless nights, endless love, occasional exasperated fights with my husband and countless moments of overwhelming happiness…but there are so many things I didn’t expect. So, while this year has been full of all of the above and countless other beautiful, silly, crazy moments…here’s what I’ve learned most from this little one year old.
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Mouthwatering Tropical Desserts!

And here it is folks, the last of the¬†tropical pool party¬†posts (if you missed the previous post – check out the¬†savory¬†food here!). Don’t worry, it’s made a little sweeter by being filled with my¬†tasty treats! This dessert table was all about the fruity goodness including Mini Key Lime Cheesecakes & Sugar Cookie Fruit Pizzas (GREAT to do with the kiddos!). Of course no dessert table is complete without chocolate in my mind so I tried out this AMAZING recipe by The Pioneer Woman – she’s one of my favs – for Knock You Naked Brownies (I did not name them…blame it on Pioneer Woman). And just when I thought my dessert list was complete I came across the most adorable Sand Dollar Sugar Cookies and couldn’t pass them up. Make one, make all I can’t pick a favorite!

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Must try tropical party recipes

Alright guys, the long-awaited recipes from our oh-so-yummy tropical pool party!¬†With the tropical theme I knew I wanted kabobs and then wanted to compliment with a pool party must – burgers! These Aloha burgers are TO DIE FOR. Seriously, I’ve already made a second batch to freeze so we can pull them out when we get a hankering. And instead of fries I went for our favorites: sweet potato stackers & parmesan roasted cauliflower. Come on yall¬†– it’s summer time so get to grilling!

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