Thursday, October 29, 2009

Barnyard Cupcake how to!

So, here are the instructions on how to make my barnyard cupcakes for all those parents making the last minute dash to make something cute for their child's birthday!

Let me start by saying that I believe sometimes a boxed cake mix is the answer. For this party, indeed it was! I do not like Betty Crocker mix. It never fails to come out waaay to dry. Duncan Hines never does this girl wrong. One of my favorites is the "Moist Deluxe Classic White Cake Mix". It's fantastic! It's so light and airy because your only using the egg whites instead of the entire egg. It's a fantastic base for cakes. That being said, I always feel the need to put in a more personal touch if I'm using a box cake. So, I always make homemade icing. Wilton's website has THE BEST recipes for different icicings. Their buttercream icing is always a winner for me. It colors well, it's not too heavy, and it's easy to make. Along with the boxed cake, I used this for both Carter's barnyard cupcakes and Paisley's Dora Cake.
Also, quick apology for the quality of the cupcakes and the picture. I made about 50 cupcakes and sent a lot home with people before I got to take pictures of the really good ones. The pictures I'm sharing are from the box of "imperfect" ones that were left after everyone left. And, for some reason my camera is being extra blurry and crazy. Enjoy!

Cow cupcake

Pink meltaways
Black meltaways
Chocolate chips
Mini marshamallows
Buttercream icing

The night before the party I covered all the pink meltaway bottoms with smiley faces which are supposed to be the nose and mouth portion of the face. The smileys were made from melting black meltaways in a ziploc bag, snipping the end off of it, and piping the nose and mouth on. I also made the cow's horns with the same black meltaways. I piped the shape of the horn on wax paper, and then filled in the middle. Let air dry overnight.
Cover your cupcakes smoothly in buttercream. Place the pink meltaway (bottom up so you can see the face) close to the bottom of the cupake. Place 2 Chocolate chips in upside down as eyes. Also upside down needs to be the horns so you have the smooth side (the part that was in contact with the wax paper) up. Place the mini marshmallows between the horns.

Pig cupcakes:
Materials needed:
Reserved buttercream icing tinted with red food coloring for pink color
Pink Meltaway
Black Meltaway
Large Pink (Strawberry) Marshamallows
Circlular sprinkles in white

The night before the party I covered all the pink meltaway bottoms with dots which are supposed to be the snout portion of the face. The nostrils were made from melting black meltaways in a ziploc bag, snipping the end off of it, and piping the nostrils on. Let air dry overnight.
Cover cupcakes smoothly in pink icing. Cut large pink marshamallows in quarters. Place across the top for ears. Place white sprinkes as eyes. Place the pink meltaway (bottom up so you can see the nostrils) close to the bottom of the cupake as a snout.

Chicken cupcakes:

Mini Marshamallows
Very small portion of reserved buttercream and colored with Wilton's Icing Coloring (red & yellow)
Red licorice
Black Meltaways

Cover entire cupcake with buttercream. Instead of smoothing the icing on the top, spike it up with the back of your spatula to simulate feathers. Use your melted black meltaways in a ziploc bag to pipe eyes on the face. Cut your licorice to desired lengths for the chicken's comb and place on the top of the head. Put your reserved orange icing in a ziploc bag, snip the ends, and pipe a "V" under the eyes for the chicken's beak. For the chicken's wings snip a "v" shape into mini-marshamallows, but do not let the snips touch each other. Smoosh or pull the marshmallow a bit to make it a little more obvious and fluffed.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Farm Themed birthday party

So, I've been waiting to post this because there were so many cameras snapping shots during Carter's b-day party...... and mine was BARELY one of them. It's been such a bummer to not really have any pics from his party. I was ridiculously busy during the party and did not get the dream pictures I wanted and planned for. I was hoping people would send me there's, but there's been no such luck. Here's what I've got so far. Enjoy!

Poppy, Aunt Mamie, Paisley

Singing Happy Birthday (not sure why all these pics are blurry!)

Blowing out the candle

Little man loooooved his cupcake and demolished the entire thing!

All the kids were dressed in their farm attire! It was just precious!

Oh daddy please let me get in my car!

Cousins- Jake & Carter

My best friend from college and her little boy

Phillip's mother

Farmer Carter

So you couldn't see the detail of the shirt I made him for the party, so I had to make sure to get some pics without the pants so you could see it (and the fat little legs hanging out beneath it are always a bonus!)

Applique is my friend!!!

Barnyard cupcakes!! Phillip couldn't figure out the top one was a cow so I'm not so sure it was a sucesss. I think it's pretty obvious.... but, whatever...

The Food
Ok, so I have to confess, I didn't get ANY good pictures of the food b/c I was so busy, so I got pictures of them after everyone tore into it. Sorry folks!! Oh, and some of this stuff was supposed to have tags with it stating what it was, but I never got around it to either. (I got some of the ideas from Kara's Party Ideas)

The veggies tray was supposed to be "Carter's Veggie Garden"

From the top left: "Cow Pies" (also known as "No Bake" or "Boiled" cookies), apples and caramel, "Pigs in a blanket", chips, Veggies Sticks, "Chicken Feed" (also known as Chex Mix)

Bullocks BBQ (yummmmmy!)

Not pictured was the potato salad, baked beans, coleslaw, sweet tea, and lemonade.


Added a little fabric bow to my wreath on the front door

Pig cupcake

Chicken cupcake

Cow cupcake

This is a horrible picture of the balloon weights, but I refuse to spend $2 on weights to hold the balloons. So, I cut squares into fabric that I bought to use for the party (blue and red bandanna pattern and cow print) and put a ziploc bag of dried beans inside to act as weight. They turned out stinking adorable, but you really can't tell from this pic. Also, I bought these table covers from Oriental Trading. They came in a pack of 12 for $15.

The napkins (purchased at Hobby Lobby). The red bandannas were placed on my island in the kitchen, under all the food that was on top of it (better picture can be found above in the "food" section).

The balloon bundles. I looooove cow print!
These balloons also came from Oriental Trading.

I didn't get a picture of them, but I found some great gift bags for the kids to take home along with the balloon bundles. They matched the blue and red bandanna and cow print fabric the balloon weights were made out of and were JUST PERFECT!

The aftermath

This was little man taking his first steps unassisted! Just cruised right across the room like he's been doing it for years! Little stinker!

Overall, the party went really well. Unfortunately, a few friends didn't get to come, it made the guest list smaller than we expected, but we still had over 20 people there. I really wanted the party to be outside, with hay-bales all around and places for the kiddies to play, but it was too cold, so we all just huddled in the garage. But, you know what, end the end, Carter had a great time with all his family and the other babies around, and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves and that's ALL that matters to me. Everyone made Carter's party so special and I could not have asked for a better time myself!

My next post will be for people like me who were SCRAMBLING the week of his party to find different designs for barnyard cupcakes and couldn't find annnnnnything. Granted, there were plenty of fondant cupcakes that I would have loved to do, but I just did not have the time!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Annnnd.... He's off!!!

Carter turned a year old on October 12. It's hard to believe. This has been one seriously stressful year. Lil man went through some serious struggles with his weight gain, we've had job losses, moved.... twice, bought a house, started new jobs, and so much more. It's hard to look back at all the rough stuff we've been through as a family this year, but we made it. And we didn't kill the boy. Or each other. We made it. We've got a beautiful, healthy, and hilarious little boy and just could not ask for more. It's been amazing to see how much Carter is growing and learning. He has been saying so much. He says eat, nana for banana, more, momma, dada, hi, bye, guh for Gizzy..... he waves, he blows kisses, he plays peak-a-boo like it's going out of style. Ask him to point to his eyes, feet, toes, fingers, hands, and head and he has it down! As a mother I was worrying about him not walking. As a person working in the early intervention program with children 3 and under with developmental delays, I was really worrying. And, really, there was no reason for me to worry. He wasn't behind, and there were no red flags. I guess it was just my over-expectations for my child, and my nagging husband in my head saying "When is he going to walk? Why is he still army crawling?" I should've known better. The day after his 1st birthday the little man took three steps by himself. The day after it was 10 steps. The day after that he's doing nothing but walk all over the place. It's like, "Don't worry guys... I got this!" He's walking like a champ! He's so funny though! He keeps his arms straight out in front of him and he looks like Frankenstien walking! Hilarious!
We had his Barnyard Birthday Bash this past weekend and everything went sooooo well. It was definitely crazy and we had to put our guests to work in getting tables up (sooooo bad!!) because we were so behind, but nobody cared and it seemed that everyone had a good time. Little man did so good and tore into his cupcake! I can't wait to share the pics with you! I'm gathering a lot from other people so I'll probably have several posts with pics as they come in. Thanks for checking on us! Love you very much!

Friday, October 2, 2009


This has been one crazy week. Monday was my sister's b-day. Wednesday was my dad's.

Today is my birthday. Yay! I've gotten some great birthday wishes and it has made my day!

Next week is Carter's. I'm more excited/sad about this than any other b-day. I made the most ridiculously cute invitations for him and actually got them out in the mail on Monday. I was so excited that I was doing so well on time. Then, I noticed today that every single one of the invitations sent out had the wrong postage on it. I blame you, USPS! You keep increasing the postage rate and I cannot keep up with you! This also means all the bills I sent out this week also have the wrong postage. This is why I love online banking and payments. Dangit! Dangit! Dangit! I'm hoping USPS will realize what d-bags they have been for increasing postage rates so much and have pity on this poor little momma's soul and pay for it themselves (or just send me a bill later). I'm so crrrraaaazy stressed about this party already... it's just not a good sign! Arg.

Anyway, enjoy these cute pics. Lil due and Paisley are growing fast.