Strawberry Lemonade Cake and Birthday Wishes

Hey Guys! Today is my birthday. I am 29 with 6 years experience. Well, technically I won’t be that until 1:51 pm, but close enough at this point, right?

I was back and forth on if I was actually going to make my birthday cake or not. Truthfully… it wasn’t because I didn’t know if I wanted to make my own cake, there were other factors involved. In the end, I decided… make the cake… screw everything else. So I went to the store in search of strawberries and lemons.

Look at everything I came home with. Yes, I did get the strawberries. But the lemons… Earlier this year I went to the store in search of limes and they didn’t have any. Not one. All they had was the bottled juice. Shucks… but I went with it. Now… when I’m in search of lemons, they don’t have any. Grrr…. why does it seem like everyone wants what I want when I want it? Oh, and if you were wondering, the store had a crapton of limes. haha. Touché. Nicely played store, nicely played.

Anyway, do you see what else I came home with? Seriously. I also meant to get the deodorant. I was out. I don’t like stinking. Just saying. But I also got iced coffee, birthday candles, chocolate chips, a cake pan, purple food coloring, 4 cheap pillowcases, and shoes for the little one that she picked out.

So now it’s time for the reveal of my birthday cake. I decided on Strawberry Lemonade. It felt summery. I also wanted French Buttercream on it. I’m kind of in love with French Buttercream these days. Next up on my list of things to try… Swiss Meringue Buttercream. (more…)

Strawberry Champagne Birthday Cake

I woke up this morning to clouds and the potential chance of rain. I heard the other day we’re like 18″ behind in rain for our area this time of year. I don’t know if that’s true or not, I haven’t verified that, but I can tell you we’re in a huge drought. We need rain. This last week has been hot, but not humid like it was. I know, people find it hard to believe humid in Missouri, but I’m telling you… You walk outside and you feel like you’re either in a sauna or you just took a shower.

Last month I talked to a guy from Southern Oklahoma about a trip he once took to Columbia, Missouri. He said he had relatives that live in Kansas and this time of year, Kansas is just hot. He figured that’s how Missouri was. He said boy was he sorely mistaken. I love when people from coastal areas talk about humidity like we don’t know what it is… and we’re landlocked so where the humidity comes from I have no idea. (Oh and he was from Southern Oklahoma… I know that’s not a coastal state, just saying.)

But, it’s summer none-the-less in the Midwest. That makes it hot and dry. Especially since we’re at the end of July quickly approaching August. August is a hot dry month anyway for us… but dang, we need rain. Come on 80% chance! But they said on the tv last night that we have this hot climate without the humidity right now which feels nice but is making the rain coming from Witchita, Kansas area dissipate before it gets to us. Eventually, enough rain chances will come and break through that and we’ll get rain plus our humidity back, but until then… less humid weather (even though it’s hot) is what we’ll have. By the way, today’s high is 81˚. I think it’s time to break out that Parka!

Anyway… Summer = birthdays! Well, some anyway. My youngest daughters birthday is in June, mine is in July, my grandmas is the same day as mine (or is mine the same day as hers??)… And a friend of mine has a summer birthday also! Oh, I know there are way more, but today, we’re focusing on Jody’s birthday. Hello! :). (more…)

Espresso Spoons

I’ve mentioned before that coffee is a newer thing to me. I didn’t really drink coffee until after I was married. Hubby and I went to the Showboat Branson Belle and coffee came with the meal. I told them, yes I wanted some. He looked at me like I was crazy. I probably was, but I actually drank it and liked it. And the real kicker is, so did he.

We had already owned a coffee pot basically because I thought every house needed one in case you had a guest come over who wanted coffee. That and every once in a while a recipe called for coffee so we were set. But after that, that Christmas he got a Keurig Machine because we wanted one. Ooooh, we went high class, right. ha. Nowadays I want a French Press just because I hear it is even better coffee and I’ve never tried it. I found one on Amazon I want that is gorgeous but expensive… I found a cheap one ($10) at Ikea a few weeks ago. When I said I was going to buy it, I was told to hold off and get the one in the Amazon cart. It’s $40 versus $10. If I don’t like it, I’m only out $10 instead of $40. Needless to say, I don’t own either one.

Anyway… I saw a YouTube video that Tatyana of Tatyana’s Everyday Food did on Espresso Spoons. This year I got to attend our PEO talent table to raise money for our projects. I was trying to come up with something different to make for the auction. Those spoons popped into my head, so even though Tatyana says they are for winter… I thought it was something different! (more…)

Chocolate-Covered Strawberry Icebox Cupcakes

I swear, I’ve been obsessed with cakes and cookbooks. Well, the cookbook thing isn’t anything new. But this new, pretty, big, fancy cakes thing is new. I can’t tell you how many cookbooks I’ve at least picked up here recently if not put in my Amazon cart. No, I haven’t bought all of them… but a couple here and there. And the websites and the YouTube channels. Oh gosh, someone needs to break me of this habit. Although, right now I need to point out that so far this week I haven’t done ANY baking. I’m almost feeling at a bit of a loss.

Like I said, it’s become a new obsession I guess. The pretty cakes make me happy. One of the cookbooks I did pick up was the Simply Beautiful Homemade Cakes by Lindsay Conchar of Life, Love, & Sugar blog. Guys, no one asked me to say this, but the cakes that she put in this cookbook are just beautiful. I’ve made two of them actually. Although, these are cupcakes, not a cake… but aren’t they just beautiful? (more…)

Family Fourth of July

I’ve talked about our Family Fourth of July quite a bit this week between the Spumoni Cake, the Wacky Cake, and the Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches. A lot of food talk huh? I also made a Greek Pasta Salad. Holy Yum! But hello, where are the pictures of the fireworks? I’m so glad you asked!

I spent quite a bit of time coming up with what desserts we were going to take. Then making sure I had all the ingredients. Finally, the execution.

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

It seems like most years Tbug doesn’t get to be around for my husband’s families Fourth of July party. This year was different though, yey! That means she was in case you didn’t catch that. haha. One of the things the family does is whoever hosts provides the meat usually and everyone else brings a side or dessert.

Since I knew Tbug would be able to make it, I shot her a text and asked if she’d like to make something. She said yes. I then asked if she had any ideas? She said let me think about it. I told her just let me know so I can have all the ingredients needed.

She sent me 4 options…

I told her all were good options, she had to choose which one. She finally decided on the Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwiches. I then proceeded to click on link after link without really finding the recipe I was looking for, So I went to the drawing board and said, we’ll do our own. (more…)

Spumoni Cake

I broke my blog this morning. I could get to the actual blog, but to write new blog posts, that’s what I broke. I couldn’t even get there. I don’t know why. Thanks to my brilliant husband, he fixed it. I made him think. So here we are, back up and running, again. I joke that I keep him around to fix my blog. It is a joke but he has fixed it for me more than once.

Back around the 4th of July (which was last week… wow!), my husband’s family had their yearly get-together. I got busy trying to decide just what I wanted to make to take. If you’ve noticed, here lately I’ve been really into cakes. So of course, I had to choose a cake. I also chose to make Cherry Cheesecake French Macarons because I had a bunch of egg whites just sitting around. I’ll explain later… obviously. (more…)

For Her Birthday

I think I want to be everyone else in my little family. They get birthday celebrations that last a week long or longer. Last year was the first time that happened to me…

But anyway, enough about me… So baby girl loves Unicorns these days. Obviously. We had a Unicorn themed birthday party complete with unicorn cake, unicorn macarons, and unicorn cupcakes (but don’t forget the Ultimate Birthday Cake too!). Plus unicorn toys, including the one above. That is a Barbie with a Unicorn. I should mention, she also likes Barbie!

Let’s not forget that she also got a bicycle. We held some of her birthday presents from her party just for her to open on her birthday. She also got a sewing machine and a Unicorn Blowup pool toy.

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Memorial Day Weekend 2018

Better late than never, right? I guess taking a week off from blogging last month didn’t help and then needing to blog like 5 times per day to either keep up or get caught up… whew! So we’re going to learn about Memorial Day Weekend today, the first day of July because that’s how I roll. I also woke up this morning to thunder and rain. OMG, we sooooooooo need the rain!

Memorial Day Weekend 2018

Going into Memorial Day Weekend, we weren’t sure where we’d sleep. Maybe the bed of my truck. Seriously, no idea, but then Jared bought a horse trailer with living quarters and BAM! he let us borrow it and we got to sleep in a bed. Whew!

Like most of our Memorial Day Weekends since 2014, we’ve spent them at the lake. This year was a bit different because Tbug didn’t get to go with us. Bummer! This is our first MDW without her since 2014. She started working on her SCUBA certifications that year. And prior to that year, we were elsewhere. (more…)

The Ultimate Birthday Cake

It seems like a lifetime ago, but I took cake decorating classes. They were the Wilton ones through Michael’s Craft Stores. And I loved them all at the same time they felt overwhelming. Almost to the point, I really didn’t do cakes for a long time. Every now and then, the special occasion I could be talked into it, but for the most part, I avoided it like the plague.

A year ago, I got convinced to do a birthday cake for a friend’s friend. Gosh, I was so stressed out I thought I was going to cry. Then… something changed. I can’t explain it, but I made my dad a birthday cake with the help of my girls. Then we made my mom a birthday cake. Then Abug and I made my aunt a birthday cake. And slowly cakes started coming back into my life.

And then one day in May, I decided I was going to make birthday cakes to take to the lake for Memorial Day Weekend. Somehow, somewhere I got hooked on a blog called Liv for Cake. Her cakes really and truly impressed me. And that passion, that desire to decorate cakes just came back. Sure, I can buy icing in a jar (although I don’t) and a box cake mix and make a cake. But there was something about her website that drew me in. It was nuts!

I knew there would be a lot of kids at the lake, so I was afraid that they may not like the Chocolate Dulce de Leche, and that’s when I also found a funfetti cake recipe to try… but I was all the sudden hooked. Even with the few mishaps that happened.

And lately, my husband has been feeding this “addiction” for lack of better word. I upgrade my cake turntable to the above picture. I got some 6″ cake pans along with a few more 9″ and bam, I’m cooking up a storm, mistakes included. (more…)