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Sunday, November 13, 2011

{Real Parties} Lady Bug First Birthday Party

I recently, well, not that recently, had the pleasure of making the cake for a clients lady bug first birthday party.

I absolutely adore the lady bug theme!  I think all the colors in this party are so fun.  This would be an ideal theme for those girls that love girly, but may not want something that's so over the top frou-frou.

Her mom Lisa did an incredible job with all the details of the party.  She ordered most of the party items through etsy, including the lady bug tu-tu and personalized onesie. 

Meet Arabella...
The little lady bug

I had so much fun making this cake... I decided that I want one for my birthday!

Arabella's smash cake

I was very happy with the way everything turned out but if I had to make it again, I would curl the wire for the lady bugs to give them that 'flying' look.

before I put on the 'flying' lady bugs 

cake pop bouquet of daisies with lady bugs on each daisy

Mom, Dad and the birthday girl, Arabella

A big thank you to Lisa for allowing me to participate in this very special day!

Friday, November 11, 2011

I'm Back...

Hello All!  First let me start by apologizing for neglecting my blog... Oh how I've missed it so!

I have been so wrapped up in party planning that I haven't been able to sit down and write or post pictures.  My mother was actually the one that said, "go sit down now while you have a few minutes and update your blog".

I know I've said it before, but I really do have to stress again, how incredibly supportive my parents are!

Thanks Mom and Dad for always being the first ones to step in to help with whatever we need but mostly with John Carl (my 20 month old).  We are truly blessed to have you!

My parents and my youngest son Jack

One of my all time favorite pictures:
My father reading to Jack

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

{Recipe} Chesapeake Bay Snack Mix

I've received a few emails asking for the Chesapeake Bay snack mix recipe that was featured in the Crab Boil Party, so I want to share it with all of you. It was also served in a large galvanized bucket with a scoop for snacking at the party.  It might also be fun to place a smaller bucket on each table for snacking.

There are a variety of items that you could substitute or add within this recipe to adjust to your liking. I have made it with sesame sticks in place of pretzels and I've added goldfish crackers after the baking process.  My friend Ellen said that there's a cracker called crabbers that would be yummy in it.  We both looked for them but were unsuccessful in finding them so we left it as is.

Chesapeake Bay Snack Mix

Yield: 12 cups

6 cups crisp corn, rice cereal, such as Crispix or Chex
3 cups thin pretzel sticks
3 cups oyster crackers
2 cups roasted unsalted peanuts
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons hot-pepper sauce, such as Tabasco

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. In a roasting pan, combine cereal, pretzels, crackers, and peanuts. In a small bowl, mix together melted butter, Worcestershire sauce, Old Bay, lemon juice, and hot-pepper sauce. Pour butter mixture over cereal mixture and stir until ingredients are completely coated. Bake 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Transfer mixture to two rimmed baking sheets to cool completely.


Saturday, July 16, 2011

Pool Party Cake

I love to share in celebrations and in making cakes, I feel I get to share in so many celebrations!

My friend and neighbor Kareena recently asked me to make a cake for her son Krish's pool party. She was kind enough to send me some pictures of her family and the cake that I made and I want to share them with you.

the party was at a local water park with a volcano theme so the cake was made to incorporate the pool and the volcano

Happy 4th Birthday Krish!

Friday, July 15, 2011

{Real Parties} Crab Boil

When I think of summer, one of the things that comes to mind is a crab boil.  Plus, I think it's a great no nonsense way to entertain. 

My friend and neighbor Ellen just celebrated her big 4-0 and asked me to help in planning her party and to make the cake.  When she said she wanted to have a crab boil I was thrilled and I knew exactly what I wanted to make and luckily Ellen was really open to the design so I opted to make the cake look like a bushel of crabs.

I ended up making the favors, favor tags, signage and the centerpieces.  Ellen came up with a great suggestion of putting out instructions on 'how to crack into a crab' for those who have never cracked into crabs before.  I think it was a brilliant idea and I love the way they turned out.

  'bushel of crabs' cake with crab sugar cookies

'how to crack into a crab' signs and sunflower centerpieces

Ellen found these wooden crab cutouts that we used to label the food with


old bay snack mix favors for the adult guests

crab bean bags favors for the kids

everybody having a blast

a few of the Chase Ladies

Happy 40th Birthday Ellen!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Cake Gallery

June has been a busy month for me and cake making.  Here are the cakes I've made in the past few months, not to mention the loads of cupcakes and cake pops...I'm loving every minute of it!!  

Surf's Up Cake

Volcano/Pool Cake

Ninja Cake

Root Beer Float Cake

Princess Graduation Cake

Gerbera Daisy Wedding Cake

'bushel of crabs' cake with crab cookies

Stay tuned for more cakes I have scheduled for July!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Cactus Cupcakes

Last night was another one of our Chase Ladies Nights.  My neighbor Danielle hosted with a Mexican theme, complete with not one, but 2 pinatas!  It was a first at one of our monthly functions and it was a huge hit!  Danielle filled the pinatas with lots of fun grown up chocolates and she added some special 'bling'.  I was one of the lucky ones that got an adorable Jessica Simpson bracelet that happened to match my dress perfectly. Thanks Danielle!

Each person was to bring an appetizer or dessert to share (I wish I had taken a picture of  the margarita cookies that my neighbor Shannon made, beautiful and yummy).  So I thought I would get creative and make cupcakes made to look like cacti. Well, I have to be honest...they look much cuter than they tasted!  I used my usual chocolate cupcake recipe but added some cinnamon to try to create a Mexican chocolate.  Bad idea, for some reason the cinnamon made it really bitter, but I still wanted to share the pics with you. 

Mexican chocolate cupcakes with Swiss meringue buttercream frosting

This was my first attempt at decorating the cactus. After using tweezers to apply each sprinkle to resemble a cactus needle, I quickly decided that the others would be needle less...

Back to the drawing board on the 'Mexican chocolate'

Anyone have a good recipe for 'Mexican' cupcakes?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

{Tutorial} Cake Pop Stand

Okay, so I wanted to make sure to post this so that I didn't end up forgetting about it like I did with the onesie tutorial.

My dad always says that 'necessity is the mother of invention' and that was definitely the case here.  If  you've ever made cake pops that you intend to serve or give lollipop style, you've probably run into the issue of how to display them.  Well that's the position I was in when I headed to the craft store.  I'm telling you the staff at the store probably had a close eye on me because there I was in the wood section just setting things up on shelves, eyeing them, readjusting them, over and over until I came up with this easy cake pop stand. 

 I still love the idea of using cake pop bouquets as centerpieces, but if you ever want to display all the pops on a dessert table, this is definitely the way to go

What you'll need:
  • Varying sizes of wood cutouts (you'll need at least an inch and a half size difference between each tier)
  • a drill and bit set
  • a compass
  • glue gun
  • sand paper
  • paint in desired color
  • a lollipop stick to determine the size of the holes
First, set your compass at 1 1/2".  Pencil your first mark and then use the compass to insure that each hole with be at least 1 1/2" apart.  Continue to mark all the holes on each tier.  Using the lollipop stick, determine the best bit to use and drill each hole 3/4 of the way through the wood.  I do this so that the cake pops don't end up going through the stand over time

If your lucky like I am, you have a neighbor with a drill press and he can hammer it out within a matter of minutes (thanks Derek and Ellen)!!
Once all the tiers have been marked and drilled, take some sand paper and smooth over all the holes.  (I opted to put a dowel in the center of the top tier so that I can add a sign but it's not necessary) Then glue the tiers together using your glue gun and spray paint it in your choice of color and you're ready to display your cake pops!

This stand holds 56 cake pops but you can make yours as large or as small as you like.  I'm really pleased with the way this stand turned out. 

Now you can make a stand to match any theme.  It's also great to use as a drying stand during the cake pop making process.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Gerbera Daisy Wedding Cake

I recently had the pleasure of making a wedding cake for some friends of ours.  I have to admit it was my first cake of that size.  I enjoyed making it but boy was I nervous!!  In the end, the bride was very happy with it and I guess that's all that matters!

Congratulations Curtis and Anna Joachim-
Thank you for allowing me to take part in your special day!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Cake Pops

It seems that cake pops are still a big trend.  I love them for so many different reasons...maybe it's the perfect ratio of cake to frosting with that nice little chocolate crunch... or maybe because they can be made to match any theme imaginable... or maybe it's because they look so cute displayed on a dessert table...

I made these for a friend of mine for her daughter's graduation party. 
Her school colors happen to be purple and black so I decided on a chocolate coating and a purple fondant flower

For the theme, Kiara knew she wanted to incorporate the phrase Live, Laugh, Love (which I thought was a really refreshing theme) so I made up these favor tags for each of the cake pops

I've been making cake pops for quite a few events and every time I make them, the issue of how to display them always comes up so I came up with this stand. I LOVE how it turned out and I can't wait to use it for future events

Stay tuned for a cake pop stand tutorial!!

Friday, June 3, 2011

{Recipe} Roasted Corn Salad

I want to share the roasted corn salad recipe from the mason jar post.  It's a great salad for a picnic or as a side dish at a BBQ, oh, and it's healthy too!

Photo: Jonathan Hill Photography
Roasted Corn Salad
    • 4 ears of corn roasted on the grill until slightly browned, & cut off the cob
    • 1 medium sized jicama, diced into small cubes
    • 1- 15oz can of black beans, drained and rinsed
    • 1 jalapeno pepper, diced
    • 1/3 cup chopped, fresh cilantro
    • 1/3 cup chopped, fresh parsley
    • 1/4 cup olive oil
    • 3 T fresh lime juice
    • 2 T fresh orange juice
    • 1/4 t cumin
    • salt and pepper to taste
In a medium bowl combine the roasted corn, jicama, black beans, jalapeno, cilantro and parsley.  In a separate bowl combine the lime and orange juices and the cumin then gently whisk in the olive oil.  Pour dressing over salad and toss lightly. Serve at room temp or chill for up to 4 hours (allowing to stand at room temp and hour before serving).

Enjoy, I hope you like it!