Monday, 5 March 2012

Holy blog neglection!

Ok, well, I never claimed to be GOOD at this blogging thing!  Makes me so much more impressed in the people that do it everyday... I am not one of those people.

So because if my lack of stick-to-it-ed-ness (?) this is going to be another one of those long posts with a bunch of pictures.

Let's see what we have in our archives here...

Race car

Sanfrancisco 49ers Jersey... I was so happy with how CLEAN this one ended up!

For my middle daughter's 5th birthday party we did a faux slumber party.  The kids all made their own pizzas for dinner, we watched a movie... pretty much everything you'd do at a slumber party but I didn't have to keep any of them overnight! :D  Bonus!

For her friends to take home I made them each a slumber party cupcake (idea from "Hello Cupcake", or one of those books, can't remember exactly which one right now).  The main cake was a bed with edible versions of my 3 daughters in it.

Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture AFTER I gave them hair!
 
My 3 girls in a cake bed

And a closer shot



Another cake that I made was a lady bug, for a first birthday, and it had a small smash cake to accompany it

Smash cake, my 2nd attempt at using the Viva paper towel method for making buttercream look like fondant... I think it looks pretty darn smooth!
Lady Bug cake, with chocolate antennae!  Yum!


By far, my biggest challenge I gave myself was to create my first ever gingerbread house (I made a graham cracker house last year, but it was very basic, and I didn't have to bake anything, I just stuck a bunch of squares together, kind of like making a house of cards!) but to add to the challenge I decided to make a gingerbread replica of MY house! 
Here is what my house looks like
 Then, after much figuring and many questions to my husband about the measurements of our house and garage, I made a small scale replica using graph paper. 

Different angle of photo, but I think it looks like our house pictured above!
 Then I had to translate that small paper pattern into a sensible (and impressive!) size for a gingerbread house.  I bought some of that BIG graph paper that is used in school, but the previous scale I had used would have made a gingerbread house that our Jack Russell could practically live in! (until he ate the whole thing from around himself, lol)  So that was another task scaling down the pattern.  Finally it was time to start baking.  I measured, and cut and re-measured and trimmed, and stood close watch by that oven door so that the gingerbread was well done (sturdier) but not burned!  Did I mention I had never even made gingerbread before, never mind that I was making a house with it?!  Crazy lady in the kitchen! 

Finally, all the baking and trimming was done and it was time to assemble and decorate, the fun part!!  It took MANY hours to finish, and I'm sure I swore... a LOT, but in the end I was so happy with it that now I can't wait to make another one next year!  Will I use the same pattern?  That'd be the smart/easy thing to do, so probably not!

Here it is... taa-daa!  If you look REAL close you might even see that there is a Christmas tree in the window!
 After all that work on the house I'm sure you're all wondering if it was hard for me to smash it, but worth it for the enjoyment of the gingerbread... right??  I GAVE it away! :)  Donated it to a raffle at my children's school to help raise money for the school programs.  Worth every second! :D

In addition to the gingerbread house, I also donated a gingerbread sleigh filled with some chocolate goodies!

...and some melting snowman cookies for the school kids to buy for themselves.
 Here's a closer view of one:

...and that concludes my baking/decorating adventures of 2011!

I just realized that there was one (I think only one) cake that I missed from 2011...

The theme was Mickey Mouse (obviously) and they just wanted it yellow and red buttercream.  This was my first attempt at using the Viva papertowel method, good but not great.  I hope they were happy with the cake still! 

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