Monday, June 21, 2010

Giving cake pops a try

Well, it was certainly a learning experience! I LOVE the idea of a cake pop- the 'almost too cute to eat' appearance draws me in every time! So after seeing so many done by Bakerella I had to give them a try myself.

(I'm sorry, some pictures refuse to turn around the correct way in every program I use! You'll have to tilt your head at this one and last one on here)

I've been wanting to make them for birthday parties or holiday occasions but because I've never made them before, and the fact that I'd need at least 20-30, I didn't have much motivation seeing how I'm a perfectionist when it comes to crafty ideas. Then came the end of the school year for Gavin's preschool. I needed an accent for the teacher gifts and only needed two cake pops, this was a perfect opportunity to try them out!

Unfortunately there was trouble at the beginning of the process. I added too much icing to the cake... that made the rest of the process more difficult. Note to self: less is more next time around! And of course no time to make more cake to even out the texture! Gotta make do!

From then on the freezer was my best friend to get the cake to stiffen up and become mold-able.

And then the melted candy was my saviour when it came time for the popsicle sticks to stay in place!

Needless to say I learned the hard way what not to do and pulled a full recovery for at least 2 of
them out of 10... thankfully!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Fun with sand, and shapes!

God loved the flowers and invented soil. Man loved the flowers and invented vases. ~Variation of a saying by Jacques Deval (God loved the birds and invented trees. Man loved the birds and invented cages.)

The hardest thing I've had to contend with since leaving my teaching position is having my boys at a great age for projects and not having ANY scheduled lunch breaks or planning time to actually sit down and come up with age appropriate ideas!

As I write on here and the kiddos nap there is a pile of dishes in the sink, laundry to wash and more clean clothes on the couch I dumped there this morning to be folded and put away. And I know well and good if I don't do them during nap time that they won't get done until after bedtime routines, or even not until the next day! I don't have the heart to plop them down in the playroom or in front of the TV just so I can clean when the weather's so nice outside or that we could be doing fun stuff together! I've always had the mindset, if I go tomorrow I'd like my kids to remember doing fun things together, not Mommy always being too busy with mundane things! Especially with Daddy working all the time, they're lucky to see him a couple hours a week! They need someone in their daily routine that can play, discipline, teach and love- just so happens that's been me for the past 3 yrs! Yet I digress with the venting of 'me being the only one they see the better part of a month'! Not complaining, just stating what life's been like on my own and truly enjoying every moment with my two little sidekicks!

So my inspiration for this month is shapes. They've gotten pretty good with identifying circles and triangles, even my now 2 yr old! (Carter's soaking up so many things here lately, I'll have to try to video record him singing the Good Morning song, it's too cute!) So I'll focus on just circles to instill that concept and then move on to other shapes in a week or so.

Last week they got to play with glow bracelets at night and tried to make shapes with them, the circle was the easiest to make for everyone! We found circles everywhere, but they especially liked finding the shape on the top of marshmallows, they were yummy!

Today's project will be painting with sand, super fun! Can't wait to adapt this concept to other shapes when they get older, I'm sure they'll be some real intricate butterflies!

Painting with watered down glue

Sprinkling on the colored sand, thanks to our sandbox and some food coloring!

Happy 2nd Birthday to my little monkey!

The flowers of late winter and early spring occupy places in our hearts well out of proportion to their size. ~Gertrude S. Wister

The invite and keepsake document I created went out to all the monkeys in our forest of friends and family to celebrate Carter turning 2!

As I mentioned before, he really enjoys Curious George, especially the ooo-ooh and aaa-aah noises George makes! I couldn't wait to have the party at Watkins Park because of the great playground and miniature train ride! Then upon fining the book Curious George takes a Train Ride, it was a perfect match!

The day before the party was all cake decorating, oh how I couldn't wait for nap time that day to break out my Wilton cake tips and fun tools!

I started with two of Carter's favorite sweets, banana cake on the bottom layer and chocolate cake on top... mmmm! Gotta say he has good taste, and the recipes I found were a crowd stopper for sure!

I'm starting out small when it comes to fondant before I try to cover a whole layer with it. Maybe I'll try that with the next occasion, we'll see.

Love, love, loved the blue Sixlet candies I found at Michael's craft store, they were perfect!

Had to have the rice krispie treat monkey join in on the fun too!

The weather ended up holding out and we were able to to utilize the park! The boys couldn't wait for the train and carousel rides!

Here comes the train!!!

Carter enjoyed the ride, but boy did he have a death grip!

Waving to the animal farm on our journey

Happy 2nd Birthday to my little monkey!