Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Cake Event

So I promised pictures. Here is the picture of the cake/cupcakes she asked me to make.

I know right? The cutest ever. The quality of the photos I have is crappy. But...whatdyado? I would have asked my super awesome really good at taking photos Landee to help me out, but she already had her hands full with soccer games/football games/and normal Saturday madness. Next one tho? Please? Anyway .......

The full tower. What you don't see are the cheerios I used underneath the hippos and elephant to elevate the cupcake a little forward. Looked much better.

The zebra. I waited until absolute last to make this little guy. He terrified me. He took nearly and hour to complete. And see that stripe behind him with the zebra stripes on it? That took quite a long time too. I picked off teensy little pieces of brown fondant, rolled them in my hand and then pressed them onto the strip before using a little knife to cut the top and bottoms off to make them level. I'm sad to say that I used two different frostings too. You can tell the difference in the photo. One is a decorator frosting, less shiny. The other is a yummy frosting from the store that I colored and piped on.

The happy parents who threw the most awesome 1st birthday party any little girl has ever had. Hooray! She said everyone loved the cupcakes. It was by no means a perfect execution. But I think for what she paid me, it turned out pretty darn good.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

My Cake Adventure

This Saturday I will be delivering the first cake I've evereverever been paid to make. Needless to say I'm super nervous and super excited and absolutely desperate that it all happen without incident. I want to show you pics of what I've been asked to make, but I'm going to wait until I can post a pic of the original followed by a pic of my attempt. It involves a combination of cupcakes, a small cake, fondant, frosting, tricky color copying and zoo animals. Namely two hippos, a giraffe, a zebra, a monkey and an elephant. When I agreed to do it I was really nervous that I was so absolutely in over my head. I promised that I wouldn't give her a ridiculous attempt; that it would be as close to perfect as I can get it. This is where I have to give credit to Cake Wrecks. If you haven't checked this website out - do! Not only is she very very funny, the pictures of the professional cakes that bakeries send out are unbelievable. Based on the stuff that I see on her site, I'm almost convinced I could have a successful cake business. I don't want to get thrown into something overwhelming or too time consuming. But I hope that once a month or every couple of months I'll get an opportunity to make something for someone. There's a chance I will be making some roses and butterflies for a friend next month. Hooray!! And I'm responsible for the treats at our upcoming YW in Excellence in November.

A little sidenote? Today I started the baking. I added a box of instant pudding to the cake mix along with an extra egg. I also followed the high altitude instructions, adding two tablespoons of flour, and extra tablespoon of water and an extra tablespoon of oil. It took forever to bake, but came out gorgeous. And then I realized that I'd used the required 1 1/3 cups water but duplicated that measurement for the oil. There was only supposed to be 1/3 cup of oil. I put in 1 1/3 cups, plus one tablespoon!!! What in the world??

What happened? Oh my heavens! What a mistake - producing the most moist cake ever. Ever. I can't wait to frost and eat one of the extra cupcakes.

Thursday, September 16, 2010


I love fall. Absolutely adore fall. My two favorite seasons are fall and spring. Probably because they are transitional, and because their temperatures are so comfortable. Not too hot, not too cold. A happy somewhere in between 60 and 75 is the best. Probably also because I was born in the fall. And because fall represented the beginning of a new school year, spring the long-anticipated end of the school year.

Aaaaaanyway.....I decorate a lot easier for fall. The decor items sitting around for every day are pretty lame. But you give me some pumpkins and some fall leaves and I'm in heaven. My house is already painted in a lot of fall-ish colors (ferduh). I have a chocolate wall, taupe, dark green and a warm cranberry red. Fall colors are awesome. Browns, greens, warm oranges, eggplant. Other things I love? Cinnamon, caramel apples, chili, tomato curry soup - suede, scarves and sweaters. You're smiling just a little bit now, aren't you? Nevermind if it's because you think I'm weird. In fact, fall has such an effect on me that you'd be shocked to know I was actually scrubbing off individual fake raspberries/blackberries with an old tooth brush because they were really dusty. I love the way they look with my fall stuff. I put them on the back of my piano in an old brick red pitcher, next to some gorgeous orange pumpkins. Sassy dropped my green porcelain pear this morning and it broke into about 50 pieces. I was grouchy about that. I loved that pretty little pear. Hmmph. I suppose I better scoooch on over to the 'hobby' place and have a looksie. You know....just in case.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Dragonflies are awesome. Did you know they begin their life under-water? They can live underwater anywhere from 1-3 years before they ever emerge and begin to fly? I just think that's very, very cool. Plus they're fun to watch. Plus they eat bugs like mosquitoes.

Do you remember that part on You've Got Mail when she says in one of her emails to Joe that she saw a butterfly on the subway? She watched it get on and then get off and suspected it was going to Bloomingdales to buy a hat - 'which will end up to be a mistake, as all hats are.' Love that movie.

Today I saw a dragonfly as I was sitting in my car at an intersection. The cars began to drive through and in the right-hand lane, directly in front of me, he flew right across the street as if he were following traffic. All the way across in a straight line. It made me smile.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Mom in a Poem

Tomorrow is my birthday. Tonight my 10 yr old Link gave me a birthday poem.

"Mom makes awesome food,
She loves me, George and Sassy!
She has a boy in football
She has a girl in ballet
And another boy who just isn't interested.



How much time a day do I spend on some sort of electronic device? My husband says my iPhone is always 'glued' to me. That doesn't mean I'm always looking at it. I do pat my right back pocket about 5 million times a day, just to be sure it's still in there. I feel disconnected if I have to leave it in my purse or my car. I check my email often. Facebook. Reader. Various games. I have reminders on my phone for gymnastics, ballet, piano, football practices 1, 2, and 3, football games on Saturdays, YW activities, scouts, and preschool. Among those regularly occurring events I have interspersed irregular activities, like the dentist and stuff. Let me tell you, I would miss or be late for most of those if I didn't have my phone dinging at me an hour beforehand and showing me why I have to get ready. But then there is my iPad, which for now is used mostly for reading, gaming, facebook and recreational purposes. I haven't entirely slid over to using it for documentation, blogging, and whatever else. My husband's iPad has become indispensable for him at work. He's discovered how to integrate it in amazing ways. Moving on, I have an iPod and a shuffle. We have three cordless phones and one stationary. Two computers, one laptop, a small camera, a bigger camera (the cameras I don't use very often simply because I don't know how) a printer/fax/scanner combo, several tvs and what else? A few cordless keyboards, a couple of cordless mouses, a couple of external hard drives. I even have a digital thermometer for cooking.

I was just wondering how often I find myself searching the house for a charger. How much time do I spend monitoring my devices, keeping and eye on their charge, cleaning the screen, updating, downloading, rebooting, syncing. Or perhaps even searching for a cordless phone because my cell needs to charge and I have to make a call. Or because the person I want to make contact with doesn't text (grrrrrrrrr) and I have to actually call them on the phone. Or because I need to talk on the phone while I'm doing something else, but my iPhone is too skinny and slippery to hold it between my shoulder and my ear. I have experienced the slip and fall on that deal - right into the toilet. A very sad day. I have a thought about something and automatically gravitate toward the computer/iPad/iPhone to look it up on Google. I can find nearly everything I need to know right there. Google it. CeeCee Wilkes would have saved herself a lot of heartache if she'd been able to just Google a couple of things before she got in the mess she did. I might have saved myself a few messes too, if I could have Googled in high school. Can you imagine?

Things are easier, and so much more complicated. Either way, I would never give up all of my devices for less complicated. I like having so much access to information and groovy new things. I love the App store, iTunes, Amazon Kindle books, iBooks, Google images, blogspot, weatherbug, my scriptures app, my banking app, TEXTING!!!!!YAY!, Words with Friends, Facetime, my calculator, Convertbot, the Chipotle app (oh yeah), Shazam, Flixster, and even....yes even clicking my phone on in the middle of the night and using it as a flashlight while I walk up the stairs in the dark or search for chapstick in the middle of the night. I'll admit I've even propped my phone under my chin to shed light on a book I'm reading in the middle of the night. It works. It doesn't wake up my husband and I can get in a good few chapters on the nights when I can't sleep.

So maybe my phone is almost always glued to me. If you call and I don't answer, it's probably because I'm in the middle of something. Rarely because I didn't have my phone nearby. How much time on my electronics. A lot. A lot of time.


Saturday, September 11, 2010

UV protected windows???

What hides under the couch


I have issues with water. First because if I'm not thinking about it I can go entire days without a single sip. I'm one of those people who walks around borderline dehydrated, self-imposed of course, most of the time. ::considering my headaches...hmmmmmmmm:: Diet Coke with lime is fantastic, but I do realize that it's not a sufficient source of hydration. Hard to believe for how often it makes me have to go. ::winky guy::

Aaaanyway - my purpose for a post on water is because me and honey were having a discussion about water and he was picking on me. I like to have a big drink after I brush my teeth at night before I go to bed. But I'm particular about which water I will do that with. For instance, there is a stark difference between kitchen water and bathroom water. Bathroom water tastes funny. So when we were headed to bed and I had forgotten to bring up a glass of water from downstairs, he was trying to convince me that the water in our bathroom is perfectly fine. No. No it's not.

Where did this all start, I wonder. I used to hate drinking water from the bathroom in the teeny little paper cups when I was a kid. It tasted different and I knew it wasn't my imagination. So bathroom water became designated for teeth brushing and washing only.

There was a time when I was about 19, living in some cruddy apartment in capitol hill Denver...a time that helped me develop my massive allergy to cockroaches (mull that over for a few minutes and get back to me). The water would come out of the tap cloudy. I would try to tell myself - it's just bubbles. Lots and lots of teeny tiny bubbles. But when the water was still cloudy after sitting in the glass for some time, I'd be left to face the truth. Not bubbles. Gross. That's what it was. Gross. And so I promptly began drinking bottled water. I'd buy it in this 5 gallon jug thingy with a built in pour spout and just stick it in the fridge. Then, when I wanted a drink - I would get it from there. Not the stinky, cloudy, gross tap. Ew. Oh and a side note to bottled water; it all tastes different from each other too. Unsurprisingly, there are some I will drink and some I won't. This makes trips to my in-laws a little more difficult because I cannot drink their tap water or the bottled water they buy. So, Honey is very accommodating and will taking me to the Wawa to get the stuff I like. Isn't he sweet?

And so my water discrimination lives on. I am pleased to say that there is a built-in filter to the water spout in the fridge. And it comes out really cold. If I were dying, or whatever, I could - with a lot of psychological effort - drink out of the kitchen tap. I have neighbors who do it all the time. They're not dead. I think they might even like it. But from the bathroom? I couldn't. Ok I could if the world were coming to an end and I looked like one of those dehydrated doods on I Shouldn't Be Alive. I could drink bathroom water then. But here in my extraordinarily blessed life, I am just picky enough that when I want a drink of water it needs to come from the right place.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Mother Goose

You've seen them before, right? The mother goose with her fluffy little babies waddling along behind her. She must be headed somewhere. Or is it just an exercise in following? Cause really, what do geese have to do? Eat, fly, migrate, make more geese. What's my point, you ask? Just that sometimes when I'm herding my kids through a parking lot I feel like a mama goose. I have these smaller versions of people tagging along behind me. Today, we barely missed a car backing out of a parking spot who wasn't paying attention. And what do we have to do? Making dinner, running around, football-preschool-teacher meetings-school pictures, Not making any more. This little gaggle is plenty for me.

Friday, September 3, 2010

T is for Toilet Paper

Awww man. Out again? Every time I need to come in here and use the bathroom, the stupid roll is empty and nobody ever replaces it. Dang it! There aren't any extra rolls in the basket either? There were three whole rolls here a couple of days ago! Who is using all of this toilet paper anyway???

This is the internal dialog I had with myself this afternoon. Does anyone, and I mean anyone, run to the bathroom the very first time they feel the need? Or do you wait until your body has already told you 500 times? Which means that when I finally decide to go, it's time. It. Is. Time. I love that empty roll with the little shreds of paper hanging off. I love that my powder room has a toilet and a pedestal sink and NO where to store anything. So, I've resorted to a little basket nearby for storing toilet paper and how on earth is it that we go through approximately 1 roll of paper per day? How? I don't really have to have a family meeting to discuss toilet paper usage, do I? There are 5 people in our family. One of which, I'm pretty sure, uses little to none. One who makes a wad about the size of a baseball every time. Another that I can hear - through the door - pulling paper off the roll. "thududududududud." "Thududududududududud." "Thudududududududud." Holy crap, I'm thinking. What kind of a mess are you cleaning up in there anyway??? Nevermind. Those two are probably the bulk of our TP users and I probably just answered my own question.