Monday, May 26, 2014

Vivian's Turning ONE!

My good friend Vinnie requested a cake for his daughter's first birthday bash.  I had the honor of making his son, Henry's first cake too.  Gotta love these once-in-a-lifetime occasions!  They mean the world to me!  

Vinnie sent a copy of Vivian's invitation and requested that I theme the cake off of it.  What fun!  I LOVE to do this!  Here's the adorable invite!

And here's the cake!  The cake is my chocolate-flecked cake and the top tier has chocolate buttercream filling, the bottom tier has vanilla buttercream filling.  The outside is frosted with my super creamy vanilla bean buttercream. 

I hope that Vivian had a wonderful birthday bash!!  Thanks for including me in the wonderful celebration!

Bucky Badger for Gavyn

Angela requested a Bucky Badger cake for her son Gavyn's 6th birthday.  Evidently, Gavyn is quite the Badger fan.  I spent a "little" time on this Bucky and I think he turned out really well.  

Hey, did you know...

...Bucky's birthday is October 2, 1940?

...the nickname "Badgers" was borrowed from the state of Wisconsin, which was dubbed the "Badger State."  The name didn't come from the animals in the region, but rather an association with lead miners in the 1820's.  Without shelter in the winter, the miners had to "live like Badgers" in tunnels and burrowed into hillsides.  

...there are approximately seven students needed to meet all the various requests for Bucky Badger appearances.  From sporting events to community service requests to the occasional wedding, Bucky, is a popular and enduring fixture among Wisconsin fans.  

...American badgers are known to cooperatively hunt ground squirrels with coyotes?

...the Wisconsin Badgers Camp Randall Stadium was a training ground during the Civil War?

But why is he so angry?

Anyway, this cake pays homage to the wonderful mascot he is.  The cake itself is a chocolate cake with Oreo buttercream filling.

Happy Birthday to you, Gavyn!  I hope that you had a wonderful celebration!!  Go Badgers!!!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Girl Scout Bridging Ceremony Cake

My dear friend Kim ordered a cake for her Junior Girl Scout Troop.  Does Kim have a daughter in Girl Scouts?  Nope.  But she volunteers her time for these girls just the same.  I think she's incredible for doing this and the girls have had so many wonderful experiences under her leadership.  I was honored to make a cake for their bridging ceremony and end-of-the-year celebration.  These girls earned it!

One half of the cake was chocolate with vanilla bean buttercream filling.  The other half of the cake was yellow cake with strawberry and raspberry filling.  Topped with buttercream and gum paste/fondant flowers and logo, this cake was ready to roll!  

I added little daisies in the corners, just because.

Congrats to the entire Troop on a year of service and friendship!  Thanks for all you do for your community!  

Evan's John Deere Cake

Chelsie and I go WAY back.  Back to Evan's Baptism where I made his first cake.  It must have been a good one, because I received the honor of making Evan's 1st birthday cake and cupcakes.  (Seriously - THIS IS a huge honor!!!)  This last week, Evan turned TWO and I was asked to make his 2nd birthday cake.  Woo hoo!!  Chelsie is incredibly fun to bake for because she likes trying new things!  And this cake she actually gave me free reign on flavor.  I mean, I struggled a little because how many flavor combinations are out there, right?!!  But she did offer that she likes fruity flavors and as soon as she offered that, the deal was sealed.  I'd make a strawberry spiral cake for Evan.  


So here's the outside of the cake.  Evan's party had a John Deere theme and I had fun with the green and gold.  

I found the tractor at and thought it was a perfect match for the cake.  Also, Evan would be able to play with it, and that's the most important part.  

Here's the cake at the final destination.  Chelsie has the food items adorably themed for the party.

And when they cut into the cake, here's what they found.  Layers going vertically!  Hee hee!!!  This was a vanilla sponge cake with strawberry preserves and a very light strawberry buttercream filling.

Can I tell you how I did it?  Yep.  Will I?  Not yet.  I didn't take pictures of the process unfortunately.  Next person who orders this one will have a tutorial.  I promise.  :)  In the meantime, HAPPY BIRTHDAY, EVAN!!!!!  

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Carrot Cake Overload!!!

When I'm asked about which cake is my favorite, I'd have to say that my carrot cake is tied for first with my chocolate cake and chocolate-flecked cake.  I really can't decide which one I love more.  Carrot cake offers more "healthy" options.  I mean, there's a full pound of carrots in each recipe.  There's also crushed pineapple, raisins and walnuts.  And I can't forget to mention the cream cheese in the frosting.  Oh, the frosting.  The creamy, almost frothy frosting that is the wonderful topping to this cake.  Maybe carrot cake IS my favorite.  

It just so happens that I had two people order a carrot cake from me this weekend.  I'm not complaining.  (I bet they didn't either...)

I love you, carrot cake!  (And Happy Birthday wishes to the wonderful men who celebrated this weekend!!  I love you too!!! ;))

Davin's Jungle Party

My friend Elly ordered a cake for her son Davin's 6th birthday party.  This one was going to be a jungle-themed extravaganza!  Per usual, Elly made her fabulous cookies.  Seriously, check out the attention to detail here:

For his cake, she wanted it to incorporate the jungle theme they were having throughout the party and she sent a picture of the invitation and this poster (which was a "Pin-The-Tail-On-The-Lion" game).  I liked the colors.  I thought the animals were super cute and thought I'd base the cake off of this.  


We've got two lions, a zebra, a monkey, a giraffe and a #6 snake.  

The cake is a chocolate cake with vanilla bean buttercream.  All of the decoration is gum paste and fondant.

The best part of this cake was actually getting to visit with my dear friend Elly at pick-up.  It'd been about 12 years since we had a face-to-face conversation and it was long overdue!!  I see the work she puts into her kids' parties and they are amazing.  Davin, Happy Birthday to you!  (You have one heck of a mom!!!)

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Calvin's First Communion

Laura requested a First Communion cake and coordinating cookies for her son, Calvin's special day.  She sent me a picture of the cookies she wanted; little crosses with squiggly lines and a flower with a green leaf on it.  I thought it was a beautiful idea.  

I made my Marriage Proposal Cookies and used the most wonderful buttercream to decorate them.  It's a frosting that dries hard, but not too hard.  It also prevents the cookies from drying out, which is what royal icing can sometimes do.  I thought these cookies were super fun to do and I thought they turned out nicely.  

Once packaged, they looked officially cute!

For the cake, Laura requested a chocolate cake with buttercream filling and frosting.  The buttercream I make is wonderfully smooth and creamy and it's not too sweet.  I also add vanilla bean of which you can see the flecks throughout.  It's really something!

My friend Heidi, who also decorates cakes and does so beautifully, made a cake similar to this one.  It was an inspiration and one I was looking forward to completing.  I love how it turned out in blue and Laura requested that I carry the squiggly lines from the cookies to the cake so that they would clearly coordinate and match, which I did on the side of the cake.  I added Calvin's name and date on the front of the cake in gum paste.

Here's what the cake and cookies look like together.  They definitely coordinate!

I'd like to congratulate Calvin on his special day!  May God bless you, Calvin!

Sunny Days for Maren

We started the day out right!  And weather actually provided us a "Sunny Day;" the first in about a week!  Maren woke up to this Sesame Street scene right in our kitchen.  It was the backdrop to some fun pictures and it added such personality and color to the room!

Here's the dessert table.  Maren told me earlier in the week she wanted a strawberry cake.  After I baked it, she informed me that she wanted chocolate cake.  So I whipped up a few cookie monster cupcakes for her.  Did I mention that she's only TWO?

This was a "family party" so my girls got little giftbags and so did my two nephews.  I included bubbles, rubber duckies, goldfish crackers, crayons (Elmo loves his goldfish, his crayon too), and some color sheets, cookies and other little miscellaneous goodies.

I used a lot of Maren's toys to decorate the space.  Sesame Street is ALL OVER the place!

Here's her cake.   I made a gum paste/fondant bow and decorated the sides with Elmo, Cookie Monster, Ernie and Oscar the Grouch.  I made the characters out of gum paste.  

The cookies are my Marriage Proposal Cookies.  The frosting dries hard, but not too hard, and I dipped them in some color coordinated sugar.  These were delicious and gone so quickly.   The party was brought to you by the letter M and by the number 2.

I served a brunch buffet complete with themed fruit and veggie trays.  I found these guys or some like them on Pinterest.  Maren got a kick out of them and pretty much devoured Cookie Monster.

Danny made these scramble egg  and bacon pies with his mini-pie maker.   

We served croissants with my friend Erin's homemade strawberry jam - delish!

Bacon and sausage?  Check!

This was a cinnamon roll cake.  OMG.  It was amazing!!!

We also served some yogurt that our guests could top with fruit or granola.

After brunch we celebrated with the cake and Maren had her cupcake.  She requested chocolate cake with blue frosting, so I continued on with the theme and made them into little Cookie Monsters with mini Chips Ahoy cookies and all.

Here's Maren with a dangerously close view of fire.  She's absolutely mesmerized!!  She blew out her candle with perfect aim and devoured this Cookie Monster too.

Maren had a great time at her birthday party.  I got through it by using this as my mantra:  

Happy Birthday, my sweet little Maren!  You bring so much joy to our lives with your kindness, humor and wit.   We love you so!