My 1st Smash Cake!

I was thrilled to make my 1st smash cake for a photo shoot at the Miranda D Photography studio today! She takes such lovely photos of the littles and its an honor to have one of my sweet treats make an appearance in her work. I can’t wait to see how the photos turned out of the baby tearing up this cake to celebrate her 1st birthday. For now, I’m crossing my fingers that this little cutie was just as photogenic. 🙂

Thanks for having me, Miranda — can’t wait to visit your studio again!

Go check out Miranda’s work at www.mirandadphotography.com.

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An epic birthday calls for an epic cake

Today is Mr. Four-Eyed Girlie’s 40th birthday. We had a party to celebrate his magnificent self last night (he really is the best) and I made a ginormous surprise birthday cake for him.

I could go into all the details of how I brainstormed with my parents after I was inspired by this cake. Or, I could elaborate on my dad’s brilliant idea to use petit fours icing to coat the “40” shaped cake, rather than try to frost it (and my mom found this delicious recipe for petit fours icing using white chocolate – yum!). Or, I could talk even more about how we spent the whole day putting it together and how my dad, AKA Mr. Precision, cut all those fondant Star Trek emblems for my cupcakes. But, sometimes you have to stop trying to document every moment — sometimes it hits the spot to just focus on having fun with it and do the best you can.

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I really wanted to surprise my husband. Never in a million years did he think I’d indulge his love for Star Trek with a cake. My parents have enjoyed being a cake making team for years and their enthusiasm has definitely rubbed off on me. Having them work with me and teach me was so fun, and the experience is what really ended up being the biggest gift.  Oh, and my husband got a surprise made with love from not just me, but my parents as well. 🙂

So while I may not be the next Cake Boss, this came from the heart! Happy Birthday to the best husband ever – and a big thanks to my amazing mom and dad!

Party: Turning Two


Last year, I threw my daughter a birthday party large enough to rival most weddings. It was fun, I made a ton of “retro cherry” themed desserts, and everyone was impressed — but I was exhausted. I didn’t get to talk to many of my family or friends, and I felt like I couldn’t really focus on my daughter. So this year, I resolved to scale back, simplify and throw a small party with the family to celebrate her turning two years old. I did succeed in reducing the size of the party, but of course, I couldn’t resist making a giant birthday cake and some special “2” shaped cookies, even though it was just going to be a “simple” party.

It all started when I found a 2-shaped cookie cutter online. I knew I wanted to make a 2 for the top of her cake, and I decided while I was at it, I’d ask my dad to teach me how to decorate with royal icing. My parents made 150 bride and 150 groom sugar cookies for my wedding favors, so it’s safe to say they’ve got experience under their belts. I enjoyed working with them both on these!

What I was most excited about was making my 1st birthday cake. I found this amazing recipe for Marshmallow Buttercream Frosting, and I decided to pair it with lemon cake. Let me tell you this: I’ll never use another frosting recipe in my life. It was fluffy, light  and tasted amazing. I really wanted the cake to have a homemade feel to it, so I iced it somewhat messily and used jumbo-sized confetti sprinkles to decorate with.

My dad had a great idea to use the royal icing as “glue” to attach two toothpicks on the back of the cookie I wanted to use as the cake topper. I used my 1-in. craft punch to cut circles out of scrapbook paper for the top, and I used some jumbo letter stickers to spell out my daughters name. It was sweet, tasty and made my little girl smile, so I consider it a huge success!

Party: A Very Toddler Valentine’s Day

This year, my daughter hosted her very own Valentine’s Day Party! Well, maybe I helped a little. I just couldn’t think of anything cuter than a bunch of toddlers at a Valentine’s Day party … and, it was an excuse for me to make some treats. There were 5 girls and 5 boys invited, along with 10 of my very favorite mommas!

I wanted to keep things very old school and homemade looking, so I bought a heart-shaped craft punch and went to town with it. I punched hearts in all the different red/white/pink papers I had and taped them to thin red ribbon for garlands, and punched smaller ones to tape to toothpicks for the cupcake toppers. I even taped hearts to the water bottles – I admit, I’m fully into hearts!

I made goodie bags for all the kids that were filled with Carrot Zucchini Cookies. I tried to be considerate and not get everybody’s kid all hopped up on sugar, and thought any chance at sneaking in some veggies would be welcome. My mom had the great idea to try baking them in a heart shaped pan, and even though they don’t look so appetizing here, I swear – the kiddos loved them! Of course, I saved my Heart-shaped Red Wine Lollipops as a party favor for all of the moms!

We had so much fun that we may need to make this an annual event. What can I say, I love the day of love!