Sunday, December 14, 2008

1st Annual Cupcakes & Christmas Party

My good friend Raina had the great idea to have a party to decorate cupcakes, so I ran with it. Last Friday, Alex and I hosted the first annual Cupcakes & Christmas party. We had quite a nice turnout, and everyone had a great time decorating cupcakes. The guys didn't really seem to care though, they watched The Dark Knight instead of decorating cupcakes. :)

The cupcake menu included Bailey's Irish Creme Cupcakes, Chocolate cupcakes, Chocolate Buttercream and traditional buttercream frosting.

Here is Mom with her cupcakes


And a closeup...


Lori's cupcakes


Jordan's cupcakes


Oops...one of Lauren's cupcakes hit the floor!


More decorating goodness....








All the girls....


I think everyone had a great time, and we will definitely do it again next year!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Don't Forget to Eat Your Vegetables

This year was Alex and I's first Thanksgiving in our new home and our first Thanksgiving as newlyweds. I really wanted to have Thanksgiving at our house, mostly because I LOVE having people over and having a good time. On Thursday morning, the family arrived with tons of food and two turkeys! We deep fried one of them and baked the other. Since I am new to the realm of cooking a turkey, Alex's Mom Lori gave me some "turkey lessons." I learned a lot!

Me being the baking fool of the family, I wanted to make at least one dessert. Of course, it had to be cupcakes. I found the inspiration from this fabulous book called "Hello Cupcake".

Here are the "Corn on the Cob" cupcakes:


And here are the "Peas and Carrots" cupcakes:




This year's Thanksgiving was fabulous...the only thing missing was Jeff, Shannon, and Ryan! Everyone at our house ate a cupcake in their honor. :)

Workin' for the Weekend

The week that Alex and I got back from our honeymoon, things were very hectic at Wizetrade TV. We were transitioning into our new studios, and I put in 60 hours that week, mostly on the weekends. My co-workers and I were working long days to try to get ready for our launch on Monday. On that Saturday night, I got home around 8pm, and decided to bake for my hard working co-workers. This was the result:



Two pumpkin spice cakes. Mom and Lori surprised me with this bundt pan, and I love breaking in new pans! I brought the cakes in on Sunday morning, and they were a huge success.

Grandpa Stan's Birthday Cake

Alex's grandpa Stan's birthday was also back in September. In fact, we had Alison's celebration (see below) the night before we had Stan's birthday dinner. Stan is one of my biggest cake fans, and this year he wanted an orange cake with orange frosting. I had never tried either of these, so I was in for a challenge. I found what I deemed to be a suitable recipe, and went to work. Alex's Mom told me that Stan probably wanted a orange cake made with FRESH oranges, and not just orange flavoring. Not a problem....I used orange zest and some orange liquor (!) to make it tasty. The frosting was orange buttercream, and was so incredibly thick and sweet, also thanks to the orange zest.



The orange cake was a huge success, and a great birthday dinner was had by all. :)

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Alison's 26th Birthday Cupcakes

So I'm a little behind in my blogging, but now that the wedding has come and gone, I have a little time to catch up now. Alison's 26th birthday was back in September, and she and Will had a party. Unfortunately it was a half birthday half going away party, since Will got a BIG promotion and they moved to San Marcos. Here are the dark chocolate cupcakes with cream cheese icing....



And here is me with Alison and Lauren at the party. It was so sad to see Alison move to San Marcos, but so exciting at the same time. :)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Looking Forward to Thanksgiving

I've been thinking a lot lately about Thanksgiving. It is coming up in two weeks, and Alex and I are hosting it at our house this year. I have been mentally planning a menu, and, being the avid baker I am, I am thinking about the dessert first. I am planning on making a pumpkin chocolate cheesecake. And, I have this one cookbook that shows you how to make cupcakes that look like little bowls of mashed potatoes. I can't wait to make them! Pictures to follow....

Monday, October 13, 2008

Not cupcake related, but I felt compelled to Blog...

So I know this is my cupcake blog, but I felt the overwhelming need to blog about my upcoming wedding. This is probably going to take a while.....

Alex and I are getting married in 5 days, and I have never been so excited for any event in my entire life. All the planning, occasional speed bumps, and stress has been completely worth it because we will be celebrating our future. We will be surrounded by friends and family that have really shown us how much they love and care about us, especially during the planning process. I am amazed at how much love and support I have received while planning our wedding.

First and foremost, Alex. He has been so patient and caring during the whole planning process. I know sometimes I am tired and all I want to do is sleep, but he never seems to mind. I am so incredibly lucky to be marrying such a wonderful man.

My Mom has truly been phenomenal. Whenever I stress out, she always comes up with a solution, and everything turns out just fine. She has been such a creative source for me, and I so enjoy bouncing ideas off of her. After all, I get my creativity genes from her! I truly could not have done this without her.

My Dad, the silent supporter. I have always felt like my father is my biggest cheerleader, but in a quiet way. Unfortunately, our "father-daughter fun days" have been few and far between since planning the wedding. But he always manages to make me breakfast on those early Saturday mornings when I come into Denton to do wedding stuff with Mom (and it's often the highlight of my week, Dad makes an awesome breakfast!). I know it is probably tough on him to see his little girl moving out of her home town and getting married all within 9 months, but I know that he loves Alex and knows that he will take wonderful care of me for the rest of our lives.

My future mother-in-law, Lori. How lucky am I to have such a wonderful woman in my life?! Not only can I call with anything I need, she and my Mom enjoy spending time together, too! My Mom has gained a new friend in Lori, and so have I. Truly a selfless person, I cannot be thankful enough to have her around. I have enjoyed having Lori be such a big part of planning our wedding, so many good ideas and thoughts have come from her! And to her husband Randy, well, thanks for putting up with us girls while we plan this wedding! :)

Alex's grandparents, Stan and Carol. Two loving and giving folks. Also incredibly selfless (it must run in the family), Alex and I can always count on them. And although Alex and I moved to Frisco and don't see them as often, it's still as though they are just around the corner from us. I can already see Carol being the life of the party at the wedding!

My brother and sister-in law, Jeff and Shannon. And of course, my nephew Ryan. What a beautiful new family. I am so blessed to have Shannon in my life. I feel that despite living many miles apart, we have grown closer over the last six years. I am so glad that each member of their family will have a very special role in our wedding this Saturday.

And of course, my bridesmaids, Jordan, Jennifer, Shannon, and Alison. Let's not forget my Man of Honor, Jason. I am so proud to have each of these people stand beside me on my wedding day. Each of them has had a huge impact on my life and it is an honor to have them with me on such an amazing occasion.

And to everyone else that has helped plan this wedding, thank you and I love you!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

My Cupcake Protege

My best friend, Jordan, has a very pregnant sister. A baby shower was thrown in Morgan's honor to celebrate the addition to the family. Since Jordan has the best possible cupcake resource (ahem, me), she made some fabulous, adorable, and incredibly cute cupcakes for the shower. They turned out absolutely wonderful, and everyone at the shower loved them! I wish I could have been there to be the proud teacher, but here is a picture. I am so proud of you Jordan!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Jordan's 26th Birthday Cupcakes

Saturday was Jordan's 26th birthday. She had a family get together that day, so Alex and I celebrated with Jordan and Lance on Friday. This particular flavor of cupcake had long ago been named "The Jordan." It is a Golden Cupcake (kind of like a butter cupcake) with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting, dyed purple.





Jordan wanted to go see the new Mummy sequel for her special day. When we got to the theater and bought our tickets, the fire alarm started going off. We didn't really think too much of it, and were about to go into the theater. Turns out the fire was real and we had to evacuate...bummer! So instead of just waiting around for them to let us back into the theater, we all went to grab something to eat at Dave and Buster's. This whole time, Jordan is carrying around her box of cupcakes. She kept getting lots of compliments on them, and the guys in the movie concession line even tried to get her to give them one! Jordan gracefully refused...they were HER birthday cupcakes, after all!



We finally got to see our movie, and we enjoyed the cupcakes during the movie. Overall, a great cupcake birthday was had by all!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

College Cupcakes

A little bit of back-blogging today! I've had problems with uploading pictures.

Back in May, my good friend Alison's little brother graduated from SMU here in Dallas. Alison asked me to make graduation cupcakes for Owen and I was honored! Here is how they turned out.



Alex and I didn't make it to Owen's graduation party, but I hear the cupcakes were a success! Congrats Owen!

Dad's 60th Birthday Cake

So I've been wanting to do this post for some time now, but I tend to have problems uploading pictures with Blogger.

Anywho, back in May, my Dad celebrated his 60th birthday. Mom arranged a surprise party for him at our favorite restaurant, Giuseppe's. We had quite a crowd! Dad's coworkers, Lori and Randy, me and Alex, Stan and Carol, and Jeff, Ryan, and Shannon! The extra special treat was having The Abbott family in town from Virginia.

I tried to make Dad a Splenda Cake (see my previous post!), but that didn't turn out so well. So I decided to make a giant cupcake cake. After quite a bit of laboring, here it is:



Here is Dad with his birthday cupcake!



Everyone had a great time celebrating Dad's birthday. There is nowhere that I would rather be than spending an evening with my family! Here is a parting picture of me and Alex....

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Saturday, May 24, 2008

So much for a Splenda Cake

So I tried to make a Splenda cake for my Dad's birthday....I had the special Splenda cookbook and everything. The recipes I used were for a yellow cake and cream cheese icing, with Splenda replacing granulated sugar. That was really the only change made from a normal cake recipe. I thought it would turn out just fine. Turns out, the cake had a cornbread consistency, and the cream cheese icing tasted like I had just softened some cream cheese, no real sweetness to it at all. What a bummer....here's a couple of pics. Alex was my guinea pig, as usual, and he didn't think it was BAD, but didn't think it was good either. :)





At least Alex is still okay with being my guinea pig after that bomb of a cake! :)

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Baby Shower Cupcakes

One of my co-workers is VERY pregnant with her first baby, to be named Luke, and I was asked to make the cupcakes for the shower. Here they are:



Pineapple cupcakes with cream cheese frosting, topped with cotton candy sprinkles. This was a personal request from the Mom-to-Be. She is due in a little over a week. Congrats Jenn!!

Sunday, January 13, 2008

My Brother's Decorating "Lesson"

I had made an extra layer cake iced with buttercream for my cake decorating class, but I ended up not going to class that week. I brought along the cake to my parent's house on New Years Eve in case we got the urge to decorate it. My brother Jeff decided to have a go at it.

Here I am showing Jeff different tips and what they do...



And here he is watching intently.....



And he's off! (Under my watchful eye, of course.)





Well, after much effort and thought, here is Jeff with his creation.



Well, I guess I taught him well....here I am with Jeff's masterpiece.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Football Themed Baby Shower Cake

This past weekend, my brother and sister-in-law were in town for a visit. Shannon is pregnant with their first baby, and is due in March. Shannon's family decided to throw her a surprise baby shower, disguised as a Dallas Cowboys watching party. When Jeff and Shannon arrived, Shannon was completely surprised. I made this cake for the party, and it was a success!



Here is a photo of the happy couple with their cake. I was so proud to make this cake for two wonderful people!

My First Fondant Cake!

A few weeks ago in my cake class, I made my first fondant cake. I think it turned out great, and fondant turned out to not be too difficult to work with.



The ribbons on the cake collapsed unfortunately...I removed the paper towels holding them up too soon. But, overall, I am thoroughly pleased with it!

Another Christmas Edition

Here are a couple of Christmas Tree cakes that even Alex helped decorate!



These trees are a spice cake with buttercream frosting.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

A little Christmas Cheer

Mom got me a new Christmas themed baking pan for my birthday this year, so I decided to have a go with it for Alex's family's holiday party. It took me all afternoon to decorate these cute mini-cakes. The kids at the party loved them! I prepared a spice cupcake recipe and paired it with buttercream frosting. They were so much fun to make.