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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

.:Mouth Watering Wednesday - Buttercream Frosting:.

So, for Reece's birthday party, I wanted to create a larger version of a cupcake for her. I'll show the pictures down below of the point I got to before everything fell apart....literally!

My cakes were very moist and too soft, and even though my mom told me I should put them in the fridge to harden them up, I didn't really believe it would make much difference.

I was wrong. (Sorry Mom!)

The cakes were crumbling apart as I tried to frost the outside and chunks of cake were coming out, and I was too stressed out to even attempt to fix it later.

Soooo....I just decided to make Reece her own special cupcake and decorate it a bit more than I was decorating the cupcakes her guests were eating.

To frost the cupcakes, I used a recipe from Clara over at iheartcuppycakes has for a buttercream frosting. It was delicious the day I made it, and we're still enjoying the leftover cupcakes from Reece's party, and the frosting is still just as tasty!

So enjoy the pictures of what began as a satisfying project, and also enjoy this recipe for buttercream frosting.

Recipe from Clara at iheartcuppycakes

1 c (2 sticks) butter
1/4 c milk
7 c sifted powdered sugar
1 t vanilla extract

Beat the butter until creamy. Then add the sugar, milk, and vanilla, and beat until it is combined. You can add more powdered sugar or milk to get the consistency you want. It was super hot the day of Reece's party, and I ended up having to add LOTS of extra sugar to get it to not be grainy. Hrmmm...no wonder it tastes so good!

My finished cupcakes (I know you've already seen them, but they are just so pretty!) I used a Wilton 32 tip to frost them.

And on to the failed double layer cupcake....

First, I baked two cakes in round cake pans.

Then I used a round tupperware to cut circles in the two cakes. Since I was going for a larger cupcake, I wanted a smaller bottom and wider top, so I used the small end of the tupperware for the bottom, and top for the wider part. (I know, genius.)

I scooped out the cake surrounding the circle. (Yes, it may have been easier to remove the cake from the pan first and then cut it, but the damage was done and this ended up working out great!)

I used a spatula to take out the circle piece and put it on a plate.

Then I added a layer of frosting.

Next I added the top layer.

At this point I was feeling extremely happy with myself. Then I started trying to frost the sides, and the destruction began....and maybe even a few tears. (Sorry, I don't have a picture of the destroyed cake. Use your imagination!)

We stuck it in the fridge with the intent to fix it later, but decided to just bag it. It's still in my fridge, and Reece and I have been eating it this week - it may not look pretty, but it still tastes great!

At least I know what to do (and not to do!) next time to make it work!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

.:Tutorial Tuesday - Re-purposed formula cans:.

This idea comes from Fawnda over at Fireflies and Jellybeans. I'd been holding on to a couple of old formula cans and when I saw her post, finally knew how I was going to use them! My daughter's first birthday was last week, so I figured this was the perfect time to transform them and get some good use out of them.

What you need:

- old washed out formula cans (labels removed)
- modge podge, double sided tape - your choice of adhesive
- scrapbook paper
- scissors/paper cutter
- embellishments (optional)

Measure your paper to the height of your formula can. I lined up my paper and measured under and above the lips of the can.

Use a paper cutter or scissors to cut your paper.

A typical 12x12 paper doesn't go all the way around the can, so you'll need to cut an additional strip to cover up where it doesn't quite reach.

I used double sided tape to adhere the paper to the can.

Use ribbon and whatever embellishments to jazz your cans up.

Use your cans for whatever you had in mind! I thought mine looked fantastic holding the napkins and forks for Reece's party!

Find Fawnda's tutorial here.

Monday, September 28, 2009

.:Market Yourself Monday - Reece's Birthday:.

I have been so crazy busy with Reece's first birthday last week, planning her party, and having company in town, that I haven't got anything new to showcase for my etsy shop. Nor have I had time to find another etsy shop to feature!

So for today, I will just show you a few pictures from her party and of the things that I made for it. It was a great time and I think my girl had a pretty special day! (How can I have a toddler now?)

Here is her awesome birthday banner. I love how it turned out, and love that I can use it again!

I also made her cupcakes. I attempted to make Reece her own bigger version cupcake, but let's just say it didn't quite turn out! So the extra decorated one at the top was for her, and it ended up being the perfect size! I also made her cupcake toppers out of the same paper I used for her banner.

Here are a couple of pictures of my cute girl in her birthday tutu and the darling party hat headband I won from Emmalee's Boutique! I also made the bib that she is wearing in her cake pictures.

So I accomplished almost everything that I wanted to have made for Reece's birthday. It was such a fun weekend, and a special day for my girl!

Friday, September 25, 2009

.:Feature Friday - Sisters Stuff:.

Alish and Whitney over at Sisters Stuff are ridiculously creative and talented. I'm excited for you to all have a chance to learn more about them and see some of their fantastic projects!

Hi! We are Alish and Whitney from Sisters' Stuff! We are excited to be doing a blog swap with Sumo today! We love all of her crafts and recipes! What a talented girl!

Here are seven things about us!
1. We grew up on a farm and have weeded fields, milked cows and driven tractors.

2. We both graduated from the same university in Elementary Education.

3. 75% of our closets are exactly the same. We always buy the same outfits for us, our husbands and our kids.

4. We look a lot a like and our husband have even gotten us mixed up a few times.

5. We live really far apart but talk on the phone many times a day. Good thing we have free any time minutes!

6. We love Mexican food, Italian food but most of all JUNK FOOD!

7. We should have been twins, but are actually 8 1/2 years apart.

We are 2 sisters that love crafts, recipes, saving money, organizing, home decor, trends, and love being moms. This SITE was created to share all the stuff we love. Here are some of our favorites!

Ribbon Board to hold bows for you little girl
Asphalt Pie-Delicious! Altered Purse Notebook
We loved making these darling watch bands!
Circus Themed Birthday Party
Altered Magnet Board We are featuring our SpOoKtAcUlAr week next week so, come stop by to see some great Halloween ideas!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

.:Things to Try Thursday - Cookie Sheet Calendar:.

Okay, so you all met Erika from Oops I Craft My Pants last Friday when we blog swapped. Which means you've seen the picture of her darling cookie sheet calendar. I had this bookmarked before we blog swapped, and I just can't get enough of it!

It looks (and sounds) like it was very labor intensive (hello chipboard!) but I'm sure it would be well worth it in the end. Wouldn't it be such a fun gift - to give or receive?

**I saw pre-cut out chipboard in packages of 10-20 at Robert's, so even though that is probably more expensive, I may go that route to avoid my hands getting destroyed like Erika's!**

Definitely on my list of things to try!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

.:Mouth Watering Wednesday - Banana Bread:.

I've had about five bananas sitting in my freezer for awhile now, and decided to finally do something with them. My mom is out of town, so I wasn't able to get her recipe from her, so I turned to trusty old allrecipes.com. This recipe had over 4000 reviews, and it was four and a half stars out of five.

Banana Banana Bread

2 c flour
1 t baking soda
1/4 t salt
1/2 c butter
3/4 c brown sugar
2 eggs
2 1/3 c mashed bananas

Preheat your oven to 350.

In a bowl, combine your flour, soda, and salt. (I always leave salt out of recipes!)

In a separate bowl, cream together your butter and brown sugar.

Stir in your eggs.

Mash your bananas.

Stir in your mashed bananas. (I didn't actually measure out the bananas - I just used what I have!)

Stir in your banana mixture to your flour mixture - just to moisten!

Pour batter into your greased pan. I used a pyrex dish because I don't have bread pans.

Bake for 60-65 minutes. This was for a bread pan. For my pyrex, it took about 23-25 minutes.

Result: Delicious!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

.:Tutorial Tuesday - Birthday Banner:.

Back on my birthday post for Reece's birthday, I showed a banner from Polka Dots and Pirates. I love all of her banners and decorating ideas! I can't afford to buy a banner, but decided to make one of my own. I think it turned out pretty cute. I'll post better pictures of it after Reece's party where you'll be able to see it hanging on the wall better!

What you need:
- scrapbook paper
- ribbon (I used large rick rack)
- scissors
- circle template
- letters (stickers, Cricuit letters, chipboard letters, printed computer letters, etc.)
- glue stick, double sided tape, etc.

You'll want to trace larger circles on the back of your scrapbook paper. I knew I needed 18 circles, so I did 9 on one pattern and 9 on another.

Cut the circles out.

**This would have been easier if I had access to a die cutting machine, had a circle die cut for my Cuttlebug, or had a punch in circles. But I don't. And I am not willing to fork out the money to buy those things just for this one project when my own two hands work just great!**

For my letters, I just printed off HAPPY BIRTHDAY REECE from my computer. So then I needed to use the smaller circle template to trace around each letter on the back side of the paper.

Cut these out.

My preference is double sided tape! I choose it over any other adhesive for projects like this. Use your tape to attach your small circles to your big circles. I did an alternating pattern.

I used scissors and a cutting board to make slits in the letters for the ribbon to go through. Loop your ribbon through and position the letters how you'd like them.

And you're done! This looked great laying on my table - I can't wait to see what it looks like hanging on the wall!

(I'm also using the leftover scrapbook paper to make her cupcake toppers. Cute!)