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A Mud Pie Christmas + our favorite Christmas tradition

November 30, 2015

Can you believe it's already December! When did that happen! It's still 80 degrees here in South Florida, so I'm decorating our house like crazy to get everyone in the spirit! I'm excited to share some of my favorite Mud Pie Christmas pieces and my #1 favorite Christmas tradition: the Christmas Eve snack dinner!


I used to visit friends' houses and drool over their holiday decor. Until I realized Mud Pie made all of it and I got some of my own! :) My favorite Mud Pie decor pieces for Christmas are tabletop items that will work great on Christmas Even when we celebrate with our snack dinner around our new fire pit. Fire places apparently aren't a thing in Florida anymore, so we're taking our fire outside! 


Above are the Mud Pie Hostess Tray and their Cookies & Milk for Santa Set. But seriously, check out Mud Pie's entire Christmas collection. You know I love a good monogram, so I went with the Mud Pie French Knot Wreath Towel in our guest bathroom. Here are a few more Mud Pie Christmas favorites!

1. Santa Tutu One-Piece (and you better believe I got this one for Tyler!)

2. Gold Glitter Mugs (so cute and only $15!)

3. Merry & Bright Gold Plate

4. Birchwood Reindeer

5. Reindeer Table Runner



Christmas Eve around here is just as special as Christmas morning. We all gather together with our favorite appetizers / snacks. We love Chick Fil A chicken nuggets, so we always have a tray of those and a fruit tray plus whatever else we're excited about that year. As Santa's arrival nears and the kiddos get ready for bed, someone hunts down our favorite edition of the Night Before Christmas. We pass the book around and each read a page. My Dad inevitably changes the words and makes us all laugh. After that, the kiddos get tucked into bed and squeeze their eyes shut waiting to hear reindeer steps outside. 



I just love this time of year--Christmas especially. It's such a special and beautiful time to celebrate the good stuff of life. Wishing you and yours a warm, close-knit, wholehearted holiday. xo 

A Mud Pie Thanksgiving + our favorite recipes!

November 09, 2015

We host for Bryan's family every year and I'm a pretty terrible cook. I make some easy family-favorites and set a pretty table to make up for my lack of skills in the kitchen. And are you ready for this... wait for it... we rented a bounce house for Thanksgiving this year. Because #SOMANYKIDSINTHEKITCHEN. Seriously, though. I think its a brilliant idea. 

Back to dinner-making and table-decorating. By now you know my undying love for all things Mud Pie. And it was way too much fun to decorate a Thanksgiving table with all their cute things this year. See below for links to all our table decorations.

Thanksgiving dinner can be an enormous undertaking. To avoid the craziness, I try to start planning a few weeks in advance. Here's my simple process:
1) Decide the menu
2) Make the grocery list
3) Choose table decor
Then, on the day-of, I wake up super early and get the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade on TV. Does anyone else cry while watching this thing? I do EVERY. SINGLE. YEAR. It was tradition when I was little to watch this while cooking Thanksgiving dinner. So I get all sappy and sentimental watching it with my little ones. 

Bryan does the turkey on Thanksgiving, so I'm left with the big sides (his family brings lots of goodies too). I wanted to share a few of my favorite recipes with you: As you can tell, I love Pioneer Woman. Hope over to Instagram to join in the conversation. We want to hear about your favorite recipes while we're making our menus!

Our favorite Mud Pie Thanksgiving goodies:

A Mud Pie Halloween + our favorite Halloween party treats!

October 20, 2015

All Brady's little friends went off to different preschools this year. In an attempt to get the whole four-year-old gang back together for some fun, we're throwing a little Halloween party with some super easy snacks and some of our favorite Mud Pie decor. I'm really excited to partner with Mud Pie this holiday season to bring you some of my favorite products of theirs and share some quick and simple holiday ideas. 



Before I jump in to our Halloween Party ideas, I want to brag on Mud Pie a bit. I've loved their brand for eons. Literally. They make #allthecutethings: the cutest kids clothes (and women's clothes!), the most adorable holiday decorations, great tailgating / college football products and so many fun pieces for the kitchen. I could go on and on, but their brand is one I seek out when I'm looking for picture outfits or decor pieces. When they approached me about working on a few posts together, I jumped out of my chair! EL + MP = BFF.


Back to Brady's Halloween extravaganza, I'm not the craftiest person in the world, so I scoured Pinterest boards for the easiest, cutest little snack and favor ideas for B's party and just love these two. 





How fun is this! I gave B a bottle of tacky glue (yes, he made an enormous mess), some googly eyes and some little white cups (ordered them all on Amazon!) and he went to town. We made a few example cups for these photos to show you how they'll come together - add a bit of popcorn mixed with melted white chocolate chips and edible eyes! So fun! See the entire how-to on Pizzazzerie's blog!





We hit the Target Dollar Spot and bought some gemstone spider rings, fake mustaches and stickers to pop inside these bat boxes. I ordered the pillow boxes and black card stock from Amazon and used leftover googly eyes from our popcorn cups. They turned out adorable! See the entire how-to on Tonya Staab's blog.



For decor, I'm trying to focus on large statement items (giant three foot spider, anyone?) and purposeful things (like towels, etc) rather than small knick-knacks. My favorite Halloween decor pieces this year are:


  • Our giant spider from Target (yes, I'm terrified of spiders - no, I'm serious - and it took me a while to get used to this, but Brady thinks its the coolest thing ever).
  • This Witch Hat Table Runner from Mud Pie. Such a cute piece! I have it on our kitchen table with a few white and gold pumpkins from Home Goods and Target.
  • These Witch Leg Hand Towels. Loving this cute theme. Reminds me of The Wizard of Oz.
  • And these adorable Witch Hat Door Hanger wreaths! I love a cute wreath! I'm not as crafty as my Mom and sister in law who can make these adorable things themselves. So in our attic, I used command hooks to put all our wreaths up on the wall for safekeeping. I change them out a few times a year for the holidays. Our doors are tall, so we used suction cups to keep them up. Easy peasy! 


copyright 2017 emily ley