Thursday, August 25, 2011

Lucy In the Sky With Cookies

Are you singing it? 
Lucy in the sky-yy with coo-ookies...
I knew I was going to title this post after the song, and then I couldn't stop singing it.  It actually happens to be one of my favorite Beatles' songs.  And as I was singing "girl with kaleidoscope eyes...", I had the idea to do kaleidoscope cookies!!  That would be awesome!  Now, if I could just find the time...
Back to the current cookies.  Sarah and her family are fans of my cookies, they are now on their 3rd order since May, so obviously, I'm a fan of them too!  She has such sweet girls, so I was delighted when she asked me to make cookies for her daughter, Lucy's birthday.  Lucy wanted the hot air balloon cookies.  (Hot air balloons go up in the sky, hence, the song reference.  Thought I'd spell it out for you.) 
Sarah asked if Lucy's name could be on the cookie somewhere.  At first, I wasn't sure how that was going to work, but I think I made it work!

Sooo, I really wanted to take a picture of the hot air balloon with nothing but clouds in the background. 
Like reeealllly bad. 
(For some reason.  Sometimes I just get a bee in my bonnet about things, ya know?)  So, this is what I got.  Not exactly how I pictured it.  I'm sure it comes across as - B, you're ridiculous, rather than - That's so cool!  Oh well.  It gave me an opportunity to laugh at myself. 
Because I did. 
(Which I do. Often.)
Here is the result. 
(You are welcome to snicker.  I won't be offended.  In fact, I'm snickering just posting this.)

That didn't work.  Maybe I'll just get a shot with trees in the background...

Hmm.  That didn't really work either.  Maybe I'll try holding it, and it might be cute that you can see my fingers...

Not really.  Let's try again...

Oops.  I broke it.  It was the only spare I had.
Oh, well.  It wasn't really working out anyways.  Moving on...

So, this was definitely a good opportunity to humor myself.  I can only imagine what I looked like standing on the front porch furniture, taking pictures of a cookie, hanging by dental floss from the hanging basket chain.  Oh, the things I do for the love of the blog.  Ha.

Sometimes in bizarre ways, but...
As always, think cookies.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Twosie Sets of Onesies

I hope you don't get tired of seeing onesies...because I don't get tired of making them!  They are probably one of my most favorite cookies to do.  (Of course, my favorite cookie list is pretty long.)  Here are a few of the recent onesies I've fallen in love with.   

A set of boy ones...

And a set of sweet little girl ones...

Looking forward to many more onesies!!

(I attempted to write this blog no less than 3 times last week. But got distracted by Pinterest, Facebook, Scrabble, Cupcake Wars, something very important.  It finally got done!)

As always, think cookies.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Obsessions and Confessions

I have a current obsession...other than's hot air balloons.  I mean, I've always loved to look at them.  I think they're fascinating.  But lately, I've been searching the web for pictures of them.  I've found several cool pictures on Pinterest. (ugh.  And, *confession* that's my current addiction! If you don't know what it is, then it's probably for the best.  Pinterest, in a nutshell, is a time machine.  You get on there, and 2 hours disappear.)  
So, to humor my new obsession, I wanted to create hot air balloon cookies.  I didn't (still don't) have an actual hot air balloon cookie cutter.  I went searching through my cookie cutter collection (that is ever rapidly increasing) to find a shape that I could make into a hot air balloon.  I decided to use my diamond ring cutter, upside down, of course.  (I've discovered that I really enjoy re-purposing cookie cutters.  Last week, I used a snowman to create an owl.  I'll share those pictures later.)  For now, I'll share pictures of the hot air balloons.

I gave them to a good friend of mine in Columbus.  Just because.
The hearts were my 7 year old niece's favorites. 
And the flowers were one of the recipient's favorites.
But I think these...
...were my favorites. 

I hope to do these again.  When I have more time to spend on them.  (Cleaning up the wiggly lines.)Using more colors.  Because they were lots of fun.

As always, think cookies.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Oops, I Did It Again...

...or Never Say Never.

If you saw my post the first time I did the Star Wars cookies, you heard me whine and complain about them.  I've had several people ask about them, but declined because I didn't want to do them again.  Well, I've been perusing around the cookie world and seen other decorators do them, and they don't whine and complain about them.  In fact, they're excited about them.  (Sheesh. Those crazy cookie decorators.)  So, this last time they were requested, I caved.  I decided to suck it up and get over it.  Ha.  (But I didn't do Bobo Fett.  5 colors on that little cookie is crazy!)   While I was decorating them, I realized that it's the mandated details that I don't love.  Details are fine, as long as I'm the one creating them. ;-)

She also requested the Star Wars cake, but I really didn't want to subject her and her family to black icing.  Luckily, the man it was for likes chocolate, which was perfect.  So, I made a brown galaxy instead of that yucky black one.

I hope that George had an outstanding birthday!!  Thanks to Sarah and her girls for being repeat customers!  I so appreciate it!

As always, think cookies.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Happy Birthday, Ella!

So, I've made cookies for Ella before. 
When she was first born...
After she was born (for her mom to say thanks to all who helped)...
And now I got to make some for her first birthday!
I was so excited when her mom emailed me, asking me to make favors for Ella's first birthday!
The theme of the party was a lemonade cute!

I decided that since I've been doing cookies for her since she was born, I would make a special cookie.  Just for her, from me.

I loved doing these for Ella and her friends and family.  And I hope the party was fun!!
Thanks, Victoria, I had a blast making your special little girl's cookies!
As always, think cookies.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Back To School

It's that time of year again.  The time of year that I used to dread as a kid...
Back. To. School. 
(Insert ominous music here.)
The end of summer and freedom.  Back to homework and early bedtimes. 
Well, at least it's good excuse to make cookies!

I made these to send with my sweet niece on her first day of second grade.
Hope her new teachers like cookies!  (But who doesn't, right?)

I've got cupcakes and onesies on the drying table this week...can't wait to share!

As always, think cookies.

Monday, August 8, 2011

My Daddy Always Says...

So, sometimes I spend a chunk of my day looking at other people's cookie creations.  That may sound like a confession, but I like to call it "research".  Some of my favorites right now are JP Creatibles (love, Love, LOVE everything she does), Cupookie (check out her henna cookies - ahh-mazing!) and I just found Casey's Confections (she's brilliant!).  Looking at other people's work used to get me down at how much better their work is.  But now, I just let it motivate me to try new things.  I've been realizing that I need to spend more time with my #1 icing tip.  Not my favorite.  It's the smallest.  (Well, actually, there's smaller, #0 and even #00, but I'm in denial that those exist, for now.)  My daddy always says, "If you always do what you've always done, you'll always be what you've always been."  And I definitely want to keep growing as a cookie artist, which means I gotta try new stuffs!
Well, I've added a new shape to my baby collection.  A rattle!  The cutter I used is actually a dog bone, I just straightened up the ends.  (They make actual rattle cutters, I would just have to order it and I keep forgetting about that one when I've ordered recently!) 

Yay for a new shape!!  And having the patience with the #1 tip!!

Onesies and tiles...still a crowd favorite!

Cheers to expanding my repertoire, one cookie at a time!!
Thanks to Cathy for letting me debut my rattle cookies with her!

I've got more new stuff coming your way!

As always, think cookies.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Growth of a Tree

I don't really do how-to posts.  I don't have the patience.
(This post is as close as it gets, and it nearly killed me.)
If you are looking for a good, informative how-to cookie/cake blog, try:  Bake at 350, Sweetopia, University of Cookie, or iambaker.  Those ladies are some of my favorites.  They have a whole lot more patience than me.
But after I did the bowling cake, I wished that I had taken pictures of each step because I had so much fun watching it come together.  So, when I decided to make a tree cake, I made sure to take pictures so I could show you!  This isn't really a how-to, more of a how it happened, for those of you that are curious. 

1.  The cake line-up.  I used 2 14" round cakes and a 10" square cake.  2. A dab of icing so the cakes stay stuck to the board.  3. I cut the square cake in half for the trunk.  4. The first layer.  I had to trim the trunk part to fit up against the round.  5. The middle layer of icing. I don't skimp on that part. ;-)  6. Plop! 7. Trim, then plop!  8. I carved the edges a bit to make the shape.  9. Crumb coated, or dirty iced, or middled...regardless of what you call it, a thin layer of icing to set the crumbs. 
Then you have to let that dry for a bit.

Oh, what to do while I wait...hmm...I should do something with those cake scraps...

That was an excellent idea.  Now, back to work!

1. I used chocolate icing for the trunk. I piped it on using a wide tip, I think it was #12.  2. Covered the whole trunk with the chocolate icing.  3. I smoothed it out.  4. I drew the branches on there using a smaller tip, like a #4.  5. I texturized the branches and trunk by dragging the edge of my spatula through it a buncha times.  6. I covered the top end in green.  (That's where everyone's names are going.)  7. The leaf-ing begins.  I used a leaf tip here, #65 and #67.  8. Just showing you that I covered up the seam where the brown meets the green.  9. I used a lighter green for a bit of depth. 

1. More leaf-ing.  2. Done with the larger, darker leaves.  3. The addition of the smaller lighter leaves.  4. Up close and personal.   

Then, once I got to my parents' house, I wrote the names on the sides and carved my parents' initials in the trunk.  (Take a look at the previous post for those details.)
All of that in a day's work.
Well, in addition to decorating 3 dozen baby shower cookies and the 16 personalized Lamb cookies.
It was a lotta work, but well worth it to hear my nieces and nephews rave about how I'm the best cake baker ever...I love being an aunt. ;-) 
And they're the best nieces and nephews ever!

Alright, so don't get used to these type of posts from me...I almost chunked this computer off the front porch several times.  And if you're wondering how I did those nifty collages,  But it tried my patience, too!  This is a pretty long post, I hope I'm not trying your patience!!  But just in case, here's my sign off...

As always, think cookies.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

My *Sweet* Family Tree

...or The 3rd ALFBE (Annual Lamb Family Birthday Extravaganzzza)...or Christmas in July, because that's what it looked like.
So, if you've been around long enough, you can remember that the inaugural year of the ALFBE was disturbed by whooping cough (You can read about it the bottom of the post).  The following year, the party went on as planned with the theme of Star Wars, inspired by the Williams-Sonoma cookie cutters I found.  It took me some time to come up with the theme for this year's soiree (yes, I'm seeing how many different words I can use for party).  As the official cake and cookie baker and decorator of the ALFBE (I just made it official, just now. It's in print.), I get the pleasure of determining the theme for the get-together.  I have that power...and I kinda like it (insert ominous laugh here).  I take suggestions, but this year, I more or less kept it a secret.  Even when my sis-in-law had my sweet little niece call me on the phone to pry it out of me, I told her it was a surprise! 
So, the theme this year was family.  I know, it's kind of a weird theme for a birthday(s) party, but go with me on this.  I'm not gonna go into all the details, but just know that my family means a lot to me...a lot.  And I love them more than words on a cake can say. 
So, without further ado...our family tree.  Cake style.
This is what it looked like before it made the 3.5 hour trip.  Thankfully, it still looked like this after the 3.5 hour trip.
The presentation. 

The part where I actually made it a family tree!
Fuzzy pic.  Whoops.

And then there were the personalized cookies for each of my 15 family members.  (My last name is case you didn't catch that.)
That's a magic wand on my dad's lamb cookie.  (He's a magician...I'll leave it at that.)
Mom, obviously, is a musician.
My sister's flock.  (Though technically they're not Lambs.)
My brother's flock.
Me and my flo...well, me. ;-)
My little sis and her husband.  (The symbol is for the Appalachian Trail.  They're avid hikers.  And cyclers.  And runners.  And, well, pretty much anything outside.)
My sweet nieces (all but the littlest) patiently waiting for the cake cutting.
There's the littlest!
The damage.

The fam! (Minus Betsy and Kyle...who were in a TRIATHALON!!)
All thanks to these two...

All in all, a fabulous ALFBE! 
I've got some exciting things coming up, I'll keep you posted.

As always, think cookies.