Saturday, April 30, 2011

Cakewalk Contribution

Gus' school carnival was last night. All of the parents were asked to donate cakes, cookies or pies for the cakewalk, so I thought these boxes of colorful sugar cookies would be fun. (Easier to carry than a giant cake when your hands are already full of plastic trinkets and cotton candy.)

We didn't win anything at the cakewalk, but we did spend approximately $15 at the Plinko booth trying to win a 30¢ stuffed frog. All for a good cause, right?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The thrill of the hunt.

An Easter egg hunt is fun, no matter what your age.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Sock Monkey Cake

This is my first Sock Monkey Cake. All it took was some strawberry cake, strawberry Rice Krispy treats, fondant and buttercream icing. (Oh, and approximately 14 hours, lots of patience, and some trial & error. A little too much error.)

A dear friend of mine contacted me a few weeks ago and asked if I'd be up for the challenge of making a Sock Monkey Cake for his mom's 75th birthday party. (She's collected them for years, so it seemed like a totally awesome idea.) I was both, intrigued & intimidate. Sock monkeys are lanky, floppy, silly things. How in the world do I make that out of cake? Plus, there's this thing called GRAVITY that usually doesn't cooperate with cakes that need to sit upright. Or be transported. More importantly, I'm always intimated when I'm asked to make desserts for an event, where people are expecting great things. Ack. The pressure just about kills me. I prefer to bake on a whim, and if it turns out, I surprise someone with it. Ta-da! Less stress that way.

Anyway... I did it. And it turned out pretty good. The trickiest part was figuring out how to make the blotchy brown & white sock monkey fabric. I used a recipe for chocolate fondant that tastes a lot like a Tootsie Roll, and then grated white chocolate over it, embedding it into the fondant with my rolling pin. Time consuming, but totally worth it, dontcha think?

Happy Birthday Alys! Enjoy your monkey.

Not to gross you out or anything... but strawberry Rice Krispy treats look a lot like ground beef. Ewwww. They do, however, allow you to make 3-dimensional cakes that will defy gravity.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Our Easter Tradition

Every year, we like to go to Cero's Candies to get our picture taken with the Easter bunny, and to pick up some handmade chocolates for our baskets.

This year was a real treat, because our good friends - Lathi, Luc & Ian - just happened to stop by at the same time. I think Mr. Ian ate two handfuls of jellybeans from the sample bowl when the Easter bunny wasn't looking. He's a candy-fiend just like me.

On Gus and Bea's first Easters, I bought these panoramic sugar eggs at Cero's, and we display them every year. Occasionally, I catch Bea trying to lick the sugar on her egg or bite off a decoration. It'll be a miracle if it makes it to her adulthood. 

Saturday, April 16, 2011

But, can't I keep the cheese grater lady?

The school carnival is next week and my son's class is collecting items for a "Kids Night to Cook" auction basket. While we were out running errands today, I found these two, adorable brands of kitchen utensils called Head Chefs & Dollhouse.

Oh my gastronomic-goodness.... these things are TOO cute. I'm going to have a hard time donating them. Would it be totally crazy of me to bid on the auction basket next Friday? Yes. Yes it would. That, and Eric would kill me.

But look at that funny Mr. Whisk guy? And those tiny, blue suction cup feet on the ice cream scoop? And that cheese grater lady.... she's absolutely precious.

Sigh. Let the bidding begin.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Is this April or August?

The kids and I spent most of the afternoon wearing swimsuits, eating fudgesicles & orange push-ups, and running through the sprinkler. Remind me again what month this is? They begged me to get out the Slip 'N Slide, but it's only the 10th of April for crying out loud. Let's pace ourselves, people.

I have to admit though, that warm sun on my shoulders sure felt nice. I'm a light shade of lobster tonight. (Note to self: SPF 45)

Friday, April 8, 2011

Vincent Van Gus

This week, the creative kuddos go to my kiddos.

Gus' Van Gogh-style sunflower painting was chosen to be on display at the USD 259 Spring Art Show at Century II. We went to the opening reception to take a few pictures, and even got to chat with Gus' art teacher, Mrs. Brown. She seemed like a great lady who's very passionate about sharing her love of art with kids. 

I certainly owe an endless amount of thanks to my art teachers, who's passion helped fuel my creative life: Lamoreaux Fulwider, Cal Mahin, Cathy Gordon & Chaiwat Thumsujarit.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

It's a meatball gun, of course.

I had a monster headache tonight, so I went upstairs to chill out after dinner .... successfully ignoring my children for over an hour. 

When I finally emerged, my 4-year-old had a gallery of drawings she'd been working on, spread out on the living room floor. This one was my favorite. When I asked Bea what it was, she said "It's a gun. A meatball gun."

Love it. Maybe I should ignore her more often.

Sunday, April 3, 2011


 Or Birthday-in-a-Box? 
Maybe Cupcakes²?

I'm not sure what to call these silly treats, but I made them for my mom's 74th birthday gathering this weekend in Salina. Ten boxes were filled with layers of white cake, sprinkles and chocolate frosting. And ten more were filled with layers of brownie crumbles, cream cheese topping and strawberries. A bit time consuming to assemble, but they turned out cute and made it easy to transport, that's for sure. If you're ever looking for clear plastic containers like these, I find mine online at Paper Mart.