Saturday, April 30, 2011

All the Buzz....

So, my husband is a....well, we'll call him an interesting man!  :)  He loves to learn and he loves to farm, so throughout our marriage, we've had about every kind of animal imaginable.  Since we moved to Ohio and have a much smaller piece of property, having too many animals is no longer an option.  Or so I thought.

So meet our latest project.  These came home yesterday, and I will openly admit, I was terrified.

Arnie brought home two boxes like this, and each box contains...wait for it....10,000 bees!!!!  Holy crap!!!!  That's enough for two hives.  Each hive has to have a queen.  So here's your lucky get to meet the queen....

So, the bees need to go from the box into the hive.  That sounded terrifying to me, but I was told that no, the bees would be calm and only want to stay by their queen.  Partially correct, but I was not prepared for how many were flying everywhere, how many were all over my husband, or how many would sting him.  (Four...but that's a fluke, according to him!)  So here he is dumping the bees into their hive.  Yes, the mound on top is a mound of bees (yuck) and no, I was NOT that close to him, I had to crop the picture!

I have to admit though, while they do scare me a little, bees are extremely interesting, so I am looking forward to seeing how all of this works out!  With the best of luck, we'll have some great honey by the end of the year!  :)

Oh, one more poor dog was soooo confused by the bees.  He kept snapping at them, and chasing them, so we finally had to banish poor Farley to the house!  :)  He looks so innocent here though...

Have a great weekend!!!!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Happy Friday!

I'm almost shocked to realize this, but here it is, 2pm on a friday afternoon, and I just finished up my last cake AND cleaned up all the mess!  That means I'm free all weekend.  I don't even know how to act!  :)

On Thursday, I shipped out an order of cookies for one of my favorite customers in Kentucky.  Her son is turning six and wanted a basketball themed party.

I never thought I'd type these words together, but next up is a pretty pink skull cake for Diamond, who is turning 8.  :)  The cake matched her party invitation.  We also matched the cupcakes by adding hearts and white chocolate coins.

And finally, happy 1st birthday to Ean!!!  His cake also matches his party invitations, which are totally adorable.  His mom is placing the cake on a very cool cake stand that has the black and white checkered pattern. 

Time has really been flying.  Next Sunday is Mother's Day already!  And I'm doing my first graduation cake of the season.  It's so hard to believe its that time already! mom is coming down for a visit.  I'm so excited!  I haven't seen her since Thanksgiving, so having her down is a great Mother's Day gift for me!  :)

Have a great weekend, everyone!  Hopefully we can get the rain to stay away for a day or two!

Thursday, April 28, 2011


I've had a ton of questions on where I order supplies, especially boxes, bags, etc for cookies.  Because I'm an actual business, alot of what I order is wholesale, but my wholesaler doesn't always carry exactly what I like.  So I thought I'd list a few of the places where I shop regularly and can recommend.

I love using these clear topped cookie boxes for smaller gift sets of cookies.  The presentation is just awesome.  And there are so many can use them plain, you can line the boxes with tissue paper (as shown above), you can fill them with shredded paper, or line your cookies up in paper cups, which I haven't tried yet.  Alot of mine I order wholesale, but I also buy them online at Nashville Wraps.  My favorite size is the 10x7x2.  They can be kind of hard to find with all the boxes and packaging they offer, so here's a direct link to my faves:

When I individually wrap cookies, I use cello bags.  I go through a ton of them, especially when it's the season for the farmers market.  Again, I buy alot of mine wholesale, but if I do go retail, I definitely order these from Nashville Wraps as well.  I've had alot of questions regarding sizes, but that totally depends on what size cookies you're creating.  I always have a huge variety of sizes of cellos available to choose from.

I absolutely love these kraft style boxes as well.  I keep a variety of sizes on hand, along with cupcake inserts to match the box sizes.  I often use these for cookies as well.  If I'm shipping a small amount of cookies, I'll nestle them in a box like this with my company sticker on it, then package that in a larger shipping box.  It works great.  I get these at BRP Boxshop.   They have great service, deliver very quickly, and shipping is free!  You have to order these by the case, usually by 50 or 100, but I go through so many, it's not an issue for me.  Also, you can pay $10 shipping and order any 5 boxes they have, so you can give them a trial run before ordering.

And of course, cookie cutters!  Below is a list of my very favorite cookie cutter suppliers:

Copper Gifts
Foose Cutters

And if you're looking for some awesome tutorials on how to do cookies, you just have to visit The Sweet Adventures of SugarBelle.  She does such a fantastic job of sharing information in a way that's easy to follow and understand.

I also purchased a 12" impulse sealer quite a few months ago.  It seals cello bags and helps keep cookies fresh.  I use it mainly when shipping cookies.  When I started researching, most of the places that carried them were asking around $125 for them.  I wasn't willing to make that large of an investment.  I went to Ebay and found a seller there that sells them for around $45, including shipping!  For some reason, I can't put a link to the seller, but if you go to Ebay and type in "impulse sealer", you should be able to find a good deal!

As far as decorating supplies, there are TONS of online places to shop.  And of course, you can always support your local cake decorating store.  The one thing I stay as far away from as possible is Wilton cake supplies.  One, I feel their product is inferior to others.  I've had terrible problems with their parchment bags bursting, their decorating tips rusting, and their pans warping.  But mainly, I dislike that Wilton has most of their products made in China.  I am a good ol' American girl who tries as hard as possible to support her own country, especially in times of economic uncertainty such as these.  While your job may not depend on buying American made products, your neighbor's might. 

I think that's it!  All my favorite places to shop in one post...not bad!  Unfortunately for my husband, now I'm in the mood to shop!!!  :)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Happy Belated Easter!

I'm so far behind...I had planned on posting this on Easter Day.  Well, only three days late...not bad, right?  :)

As some of you know, my family has expanded recently.  My husband's daughter, her boyfriend, and our three grandchildren have all moved here from Ohio.  So this Easter was our first big family dinner.  It was so much fun to have the grandkids with us on a holiday!  Normally I ship gifts down to them, so it was a treat to actually get to watch them search for their Easter baskets!!!!  I made little cookie bags for their baskets that I think turned out cute:

Easter is always a slow time of year for cakes for some reason, so I normally get to actually make treats for my own family!  This year we did bunny cupcakes and bunny butt cookies:

I have some cute cakes for this week, so hopefully I'll get those posted in a more timely fashion!  :)  I hope you all had a fantastic Easter!!!!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

It's Almost Easter!

I have to admit...I had NO idea Easter was this coming Sunday.  I knew it was at the end of April, but apparently the end of April snuck up on me fast!  I didn't realize it until I read it in CookieCrazie's blog, so thank you Pam!  I would've been soooo behind. 

Life has been a bit hectic lately.  We still have a full house with all three grandkids with us, so it's difficult to set time aside for cookies.  :(  But I just HAD to try to get some done. 

These cookies were inspired by many talented cookie artists.  It's so hard to know where the original ideas came from, especially when you get a cookie like the "peeps" one that everybody wants to do!  I try really hard to name the original designer, as I've had a cupcake cookie design that's been copied so much that no one can remember it was my design either!  :)  Okay, not the worst problem to have, but it's still nice to get credit for the original.

That being said, I think the original designer of the Peeps cookie was T-Woods on Flickr.  If anyone can correct me, let me know!  I have NO idea who came up with the chocolate covered bunny design, but it's genius as well!  I had such a good time creating this set.  Hopefully the grandkids will enjoy munching on them come Easter morning!  :)

Even posting this picture makes me smile.  :)  Which is the whole point of a cookie, right?!

This past weekend, I did a cake to match Connor's party invitations.  The animals are all modeled out of chocolate or fondant.  Hopefully he enjoyed his 2nd birthday!!!

And a close up of the monkey.  I was pretty proud of him, as monkeys seem to be my nemisis!

I hope everyone has a fantastic Easter!  We're pulling out all the stops this year....ham dinner, homemade gravy and biscuits, baskets for the kids, dying easter eggs, easter egg hunt.  Wow, I should get busy!!!  :)

Friday, April 15, 2011

Brush Embroidery

I've been meaning to post this picture for quite awhile.  I wanted to give brush embroidery a try, so I made these.  I like how they turned out.  I can picture them in black and white as well...I think it would be very dramatic!  :)

How's that for a quick post?  :)  Have a great weekend!!!!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Bridal Showers

For some reason,  I don't normally get many orders for bridal showers.  I had two for this past weekend, so that was unique!  :)

First was an order for my friend Cathy in New York.  She's hosting her daughter's bridal shower, and although she's a cake decorator and makes FANTASTIC cookies herself, she just didn't have time to do them with everything else she had going on.  Understandable!  :)  The fact that she trusted me to do the cookies meant alot to me, and I really hope she loved them!

And a close up....the shells are made of white chocolate, which I think went well with the theme!

And a bridal shower cake, made to match the invitations.

Oh, I also did this cake last week.  It kinda reminded me of my mom...she took a class in making glass beads, so for awhile, she made us some really cool jewelry! 

Have a great week!!!!!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Cookie Exchange

I've been meaning to post these pictures for so long now!  Life just kinda gets away from you sometimes, doesn't it?!

I had a little cookie exchange with one of cookie heroes....Angela, aka SweetToothFairy on Flickr.  I have wanted to see her work in person for such a long time!  We decided to do a cookie exchange between the two of us.  My jaw hit the floor when I opened my box and saw these AMAZING cookies:

Her work is so amazingly delicate and detailed.  I can't imagine how small of a tip she must've used to do these!

I really struggled with what type of cookies to make for her.  I ended up settling on a spring theme, just because I'm desperate for some nicer weather!  Anything "springy" puts a huge smile on my face, as I'm hoping it did hers as well!

Honestly, I loved the way they turned out, but mine definitely looked kinda big and clunky next to her delicate work! 

I've been thinking of maybe doing a couple of "how-to's" for the blog as well, so if anyone has any suggestions, I'm open to ideas! 

As for us, we're still looking for a three bedroom house for rent for our house guests.  So if anyone knows of anything in the Columbus, West Jeff, Plain City area, let me know!  We love being full time grandparents but are looking forward to getting our empty nest...emptied again!  :)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

A Special Woman

Two weeks ago, I made a birthday cake for a woman turning 91.  That alone was something special.  But when I went to deliver the cake, I was told a little about her life.  Harriet was a member of the very first female unit of the Marines!  How impressive is that?!  She enlisted in 1942, after receiving her college degree (also unique for that time).  Although she could've enlisted as an officer, she didn't want that advantage and was instead enlisted as a first sergeant.  I felt so very honored to create her birthday cake, and I really hope she loved it!

I also did some cookies for a baby shower a couple of weeks ago that shipped to Kentucky.  These are my favorite baby cookies in a long time.  I love the colors they chose for the shower!  The pictures aren't the greatest, unfortunately, but you'll get the idea.

Hope you enjoy your weekend!  Its supposed to be a beautiful 60 degrees here today, so we are definitely getting out for a nice long walk to enjoy the sunshine!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Its Been Awhile!

I've dropped back into my old habits of terribly neglecting my blog!  As I posted awhile ago, my stepdaughter and three grandchildren relocated here from Florida, so they're staying with us until they find their own place.  I had totally forgotten how small children can take up every second of your day!  :)  Don't get me wrong, it's a joy to be a full-time grandma, just more tiring than I thought!  :)

But I still have to make time for cakes, of course!  Yesterday I did one of my new favorite baby shower cakes.  I really love how it turned out.  The boots are made of gumpaste, so everything on the cake is totally edible.

I also had a small wedding cake that I delivered to Little Turtle Golf Club in Westerville.  Kim, the woman in charge of the reception, was by far the sweetest person I've had the priviledge of dealing with.  She did a great job of giving me directions and having everything ready when I arrived.  Thanks Kim!  Everything on the cake is edible, except for the diamonds!

And a simple baby shower cake from last week.  I love the sentiment they picked out for the cake sweet!  :)

I have lots of pictures to get caught up with, so I'll try harder this week to update more regularly!  Have a fantastic week!