Well, it's been a crazy two months! I ended up going in for emergency surgery on my back in April (surprise!), learned I am severely allergic to MRI contrast dye (and shellfish now, too), and have had a heck of a time with recovery. But, given all of that, I have been back at work for a week and a half now, and have been baking up a storm in the kitchen!

With my kiddos' out visiting family in California for the summer, I won't be posting many (if any) lunches. I do have several cake orders in the works, and have a photo session or two coming up.

Here's what has been going on in this house!

Baking:


First off we have a super rich chocolate cake, layered and frosted with vanilla bean butter cream, and topped with a fudgey chocolate ganache!
And here we have two tiers, one chocolate and one vanilla, frosted with a lightly sweetened whipped butter icing, and decorated with sunflowers!

And I made the CUTEST little Elmo smash cake, EVER!    
And the cake for everyone else to eat, since we know how thrashed smash cakes get!

Photography:

I also held a mini photo session for my daughter for graduation. I haven't finished editing all of the photos, but here are a few!

The last week and a half have been a whirlwind, and I have wanted a nap every single day... Think anyone would notice if I slipped under my desk for a few zzzzzzzz's? :D
 
 
This week, kiddo and I worked our butts off learning how to make gumpaste flowers for these two cakes! We had so much fun! She did an amazing job, and I wouldn't have gotten these cakes down without her help. The round cake is lemon with vanilla bean butter cream filling and icing, and the 1/4 sheet cake is vanilla bean cake with raspberry filling.

Happy birthday, Vickie! I hope you enjoy your cakes!
 
 
This weekend is the first time since before Valentine's day that I've actually had some down time! I figured I would use this time to get some good deep cleaning done around the house, but I totally forgot I had to take my middle child out for some driving practice, as she starts behind the wheel tomorrow... TOMORROW! I swear to you, she is only 2 years old... No way she is 15! Between my normal job, babysitting here and there, baking, and hitting the gym, I've been one busy mama!

First off, we have Valentines Day. I made upwards of 300 chocolate covered strawberries. So. Much. Chocolate. I tried some new things this year, and they were a total success! Rolled my berries in crushed Oreos, amazing! And rolled some others in crushed Butterfinger. Oh holy cow, best idea ever! Also my usual strawberries: regular, vodka infused, and cheesecake filled. Either in a box, or arranged in a bouquet. They always look so pretty!
I also had two birthday cake orders, one last weekend and one the weekend before. First up, we have a smash cake for my most favorite little Tucker. Oh how I love that kiddo! Vanilla bean cake with buttercream icing made to look quilted. Happy 1st birthday, King Tucker!
Next up, this AMAZING thing! Two layers of red velvet cake, filled and frosted with a cooked vanilla bean whipped butter icing, drenched in chocolate ganache, and topped with 7 chocolate covered strawberries.

Oh. My. God.
Now I guess I'll try to make time to clean up some of this mess ;)
 
 
It's that time of year again! Time to show your love with the gifting of delicious confectioneries! I tend to get flooded with orders this time of year, so make sure you get yours in soon to make sure I have enough time and ingredients.

This year I will be requiring a 50% non-refundable deposit on all orders to cut back on my losses from order changes/cancellations. I am easy to work with, if you need to make payments on a larger order, please don't hesitate to ask, we can work something out!

Shipping IS available within the US, but we need to work it out well beforehand so that we can calculate costs and timing.


Here is a price list for the Chocolate Covered Strawberries:
****Ordering of Vodka berries will require a photo ID to prove you are over the age of 21****
Above: 1/2 dzn berries & 1/2 dzn marshmallows in a bouquet.
Below: Red velvet cake with butter icing, chocolate ganach, and 1/2 dzn chocolate covered berries.
Below: Macaroons with hazelnut filling.
Above: 1 dozen hand dipped chocolate covered strawberries!
Below: Chocolate raspberry cupcakes with milk chocolate icing and fresh berries.
Below: Chocolate cake with whipped cream icing.
 
 
I have been horrible about photographing our lunches lately, and even worse about making them >.< I need to get back on the bandwagon!

So, enjoy this awesome fireplace I made out of cardboard!
And my Lootcrate wreath, made up of all of the little goodies from my lootcrates :D
 
 
I had a photo shoot today at a covered bridge, and oh. my. goodness. Talk about beautiful! I can't wait to go back when it's snowing and take some more! The place was STUNNING. The lighting was wonderful. Things couldn't have gone any better.

If you're ever driving down Route 66 in central Illinois, be sure to check out the Sugar Creek Covered Bridge!
 
 
Hummus, pretzel chips, and apples
Breakfast! Waffles, apples, syrup, and a granola bar
Tuna with crackers, applesauce, granola bar
And this is my usual breakfast! Smoothie ingredients: powdered pb, ground flax seeds, chia seeds, almond milk, greek yogurt, and bananas. Sometimes I'll add a handful of other fruit, a scoop of pureed pumpkin, or for an extra special treat, a heaping scoop of hot cocoa mix!
 
 
My most favorite little Jedi turned 5 this weekend! So of course when his mom asked if we could make some Star Wars themed cupcakes I just had to do it! She wanted some red velvet Tauntauns, so I made some horns and ears out of gumpaste, dabbed on some grey "fur" icing, and finished them off with an eyeball!

Then I had the best idea ever of using small glow sticks and some electrical tape to make lightsabers! Check these things out!
 
 
Sorry I have been absent! Between making Halloween costumes, birthdays, and work, I just haven't had time to catch up on this thing! However, I'm about to fix all of that :D Here are some of our lunches from the last 2 weeks.
Mini Pot Pie "muffins"

Breadless Sandwich

Tuna, Crackers, and Grapes

Chicken Soup and Crackers

Honey Mustard Chicken and Grapes
Salad in a jar, smoothie, and trail mix.

Yogurt Parfaits, oranges, juice

Chicken Alfredo, Graham Crackers, Grapes

Cereal, Bananas, and a Smoothie

Tomato Soup, Crackers, and Apples

These hot food containers are proving totally worth their cost. Having hot lunches on cold days is great! The only issue has been my oldest forgets her lunchbox in her locker All. The. Time. I started telling her that if she forgets it, I'm not making her lunch! School lunches are bad enough to prompt her to remember to bring it home!

Also, even after working so hard and so long on the Weeping Angel costume, we managed to NOT get a good photo of it before she left to go to her Halloween parties and the costume contests. But, here are some pics anyway!
She actually had sleeves done in the same stone paint, her hair up in a bun and sprayed grey, and had grey makeup on her hands and face.
I went as a Gryffindor.
My oldest daughter decided to be a deer for Halloween! She did her own makeup, and wore her homecoming dress.
And my cat decided to wear my son's mask.
 
 
I will have to catch up on the lunch posts after halloween. I have been taking photos of them, but all of my free time has been taken up with making this Weeping Angel costume! Here is a sneak peak and a quick wing tutorial!
First off, we drew some wings on a couple of pieces of foam board from the dollar store. Then we cut out "feathers" from craft foam, layered, and hot glued them to the foam board.
Once they were all put together, I did a base coat in flat black primer, then once dry, a few coats of "stone texture" spray paint.
We ripped out most of our tomato plants recently, and the cages made great holders to dry the paint!
I'll post a tutorial on the rig as soon as we finish it :)