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Halloween/Fall 2018

This year was different because my son broke his collarbone.

That meant no running away from zombies like other years...

Instead, I drove myself crazy baking for my husband’s office Halloween party.

He had asked me to bake pumpkin cupcakes on a weeknight (the horror!).

I got home really late from work and started baking.

This was a new recipe, and sadly only made a dozen cupcakes.

Pumpkin cupcakes with cinnamon cream cheese frosting.

My husband said that wouldn’t be enough, so I started making vanilla cupcakes, too.

But I only had enough cream cheese frosting for the pumpkin cupcakes, and I realized there was not one bit of powdered sugar in the house.

How does this happen??

Too late to run to the store, so I used a regular batch of buttercream I had made–instead of the cinnamon one I wanted to make.

In the meantime, my oven was acting crazy and stressing me out.

I kept running over to get lunches ready for the next day…

Eat a quick dinner in between baking…

Help kids with homework…

And so on…

Then I colored the buttercream frosting orange, piped the cupcakes, and by then I was about to run away screaming because I was so tired.

And that’s when it happened…

My husband told me his office wasn’t actually having a party at work after all– it was just people bringing in candy for Halloween.

So I threw the cupcakes at him.

OK, I didn’t really– but I wanted to!

But that’s ok, his office enjoyed the cupcakes.  🙂

The rest of Halloween was pretty hectic, but I got to bake some fall brownie bites for my son’s school party:

Brownie bites with fondant leaves.

We had spider personal pizzas and mummy hot dogs:

I also made pumpkin pancakes for the first time, and they were a hit!!

And of course, my kids’ pumpkins– didn’t they do a great job?

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Olaf Party (Part 2)

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I’m finally back with Part 2 of my Olaf Party!

This might be my last post for a little while because we are moving!

If you read the Part 1 post, you know I’m allergic to Alabama… so… you know…  🙂

Anyway, here are the cake balls (supposed to be snowballs).

I’m embarrassed to post Olaf because I made a mess– but my son liked him, so here he is:

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Who would’ve known that it was nearly impossible for me to make a decent-looking fondant Olaf?!?!  I sat there for hours and finally gave up.  Here’s the final product.

These are the snow-covered pretzels.

No, it’s not really snow.

Yes, it’s chocolate.

OK, can we move along now?

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The mini cupcakes:

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I made the chocolate snowflake toppers.

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On these, I put little homemade fondant confetti.  Yes, there is such a thing. I made it up.

The little snowflake cookies (I cheated– I make these for Christmas, so they were easy):

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And finally, my bigger snowflake cookies.

They came out the wrong shade and I had no time to re-do them, so they got banned from the dessert table.

I’m serious.

In fact, I threw them out as punishment.

I’m joking.

About the punishment, not the banning.  Really.

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Oh why, blue, did you come out wrong???

I left them off the table, but I did give them to the kids as they each went home.

Sweet little kids– no one was offended by the wrong shade of blue!  🙂

And here are a few of the little extras (not all) I had for the party:

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Now I have to pack.  See you next time!

Olaf Party (Part 1)

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I’m back!

Ok, you probably didn’t know I was gone in the first place… but… I’m back anyway!

After over 9 weeks of daily headaches and dizziness,  I found out I’m allergic to Alabama!  🙂

Feeling a little better now, but who cares–  here’s Olaf!

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I decided to do a very easy dessert table because we’ve been too busy.

And it worked!  Olaf was really simple to make.

My son was extra happy about his nose.  He said I made it look like a real carrot:

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And here’s the second cake (yes, there were only 2 this time– I can’t believe it!):

(Wow, lots of exclamation points in this post.  Moving along…)

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I love my new snowflake fondant cutters!

So nothing extravagant– but the kids liked it.

Stay tuned for the rest of the dessert table in Part 2!

 

Robot Party (Part 1)

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This party nearly killed me.

Well, not the party– it was the robot cake:

Robot Cake 2b

He was over a foot tall…

Not like some weird horror movie where the robot comes to life and runs after me with a sharp spatula or something — it’s just that it was probably the most difficult cake yet.

I named him Dudley while I was putting him together.

I was not happy with Dudley.

In fact, I don’t think I will be making any more of these crazy cakes in the future.  I’ll stick to normal cakes.

Yes, you can blame Dudley for that…

I also made an “easy” robot cake:

Frosting robot  3a

It was not nearly as difficult as Dudley, but my hand nearly fell off from piping.

And since I had literally no time left for another cake (believe me, there are more desserts coming up in Part 2), I threw together this cake:

Robot square cake b

It didn’t look as awful as this picture! Just didn’t get a good picture of it.

Not sure why I feel compelled to make at least 3 cakes.

It’s a curse.

I know, it’s the same thing for every party: I nearly die of overbaking, then I don’t like the end products, then I post them and complain, and then I do it all over again.  

I’m so predictable.  🙂

OK, see you for Part 2!  No complaining then, I promise!

 

 

Outer Space Party (Part 1)

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Wow, I’m really behind with these posts.  It’s been a crazy couple of months… birthday parties, trip to Disney, out-of-town guests, Easter, tornadoes, road trips, 2 graduations, a cruise… well, you get the idea.

Basically, the usual.

OK, let’s start with my son’s Outer Space party.

I decided to make easy cakes this time:

Spaceship cake 2a

This cake was over a foot long.

As easy as it seems, it took a ridiculously long time. 

Luckily, the Happy Birthday cake was a lot easier.

Instead of making it all in fondant, I used buttercream frosting, with fondant decorations:

Space cake a

 

Happy Birthday cake 2a

Then my 5-year-old wanted me to make little chocolate astronauts (I bought a mold), but  I thought they looked funny.  

He insisted.

I made them for him.

Then I hid them, hoping he’d forget. 

But of course, he didn’t forget.

I even distracted him with a bunch of other desserts.

He still asked for them.

I acted like I didn’t know what he was talking about.

He described them.

I gave up.

I took them out of the hiding place and set them out with a quick planet cake I whipped up:

Planet cake a

Yeah, I don’t even want to talk about it.  Lol.

But he was happy with it, so that’s all that matters.  Right???

OK, as long as you know that I didn’t approve of the cake…  Moving right along…

Check out the rocket piñata my husband made (it was over 3 feet long)!

Rocket pinata 2a

And let’s end with the cheese cut out in star shapes.  I was really excited about these, for some reason:

Star cheese a

See you for Part 2!

 

 

Valentine’s Desserts 2014

I disappointed myself this year with Valentine’s Day desserts.

I had great aspirations, but then the usual happened:

My son broke his pinky, my nanny had a birthday, we had 2 Valentine’s day parties, there was a kids’ party we had to go to the prior weekend, the kids were stuck at home for 3 snow days… you know how it goes.

So, without any further excuses, here are my brownie bites:

I piped the chocolate hearts out of chocolate, and made pink buttercream frosting.

I piped the chocolate hearts, and made pink buttercream frosting.

They weren’t cutesy enough for me, since I like very pink and red desserts, with sprinkles.

But no time, so I made brown sugar blondies with Valentine’s M&Ms.

At least the cupcake cups I put them in were cutesy!

Blondies FB

And that was all I did.

But in my defense, I also had to make a birthday cake, so you know…

Mel's cake

For our awesome nanny!

As I always say, I’ll do better next year!  🙂

Pirate Party (Part 1)

My son wanted a pirate party, and I figured a pirate ship cake wouldn’t be too difficult.

Sometimes I wonder if I’m insane.

I don’t know why, but it was one of the most difficult cakes yet!

Ship cake 2a

Everything was edible, except the sails. The board it’s on is almost 2 feet long.

I wasn’t completely happy with it, but my son loved it, and that’s all that matters.

Then I made a simple Happy Birthday cake:

Happy Birthday Pirate Cake a

And as I was dreaming up the dessert table, I felt like I needed to make another cake– a treasure chest!  Not sure why, considering I had other desserts, plus 2 cakes already, and the party was for only 13 boys.  

It must be my obsessive baking problem.

Well, at 2am the night before the party, I was kicking myself for having decided on a third cake.  I  had been on my feet for 18 hours straight, and could barely keep my eyes open.

But I made it anyway.

And then my husband told me the treasure chest looked awful.

Yes, he went there.  (Mind you, he was tired too.)

So I picked up the cake and threw it at him.

OK, that was only in my mind.  🙂

I actually worked on it some more (because he was right), and made it look somewhat presentable:

Treasure Chest cake a

Although I have to say, when one of the boys arrived, he immediately went to open the treasure chest.  As I gasped, wondering if it would all fall apart before the party even began, he exclaimed, “Whoa! I didn’t realize it was a cake!”  

Nice.  Win for me.  🙂