Thursday, June 21, 2012

CAKE: Mara's Wine-Themed 40th and Brooke's Graduation

Last weekend was ANOTHER busy weekend!
And I'm still trying to play catch up :/ 

So, I'm really not a huge fan of fondant- especially when it comes
to making things that my family will be eating. They tend to 
be very quick to tell me when something is anything less than
impressive. For that reason, I usually don't do a lot of
fondant cakes. This month it looks like I've made quite a few exceptions though!

My cousin's wife, Mara,  (okay, so I guess I could just say my cousin) 
recently celebrated her 40th birthday! She looks like she's 25 but I 
kid you not- she's the big 4-0! She wanted to do something for
her birthday but didn't know what. So Aunt Sherry and I stepped
in and decided to throw her a surprise, wine-themed
"Aged to Perfection"
party! This idea actually wasn't that original- my mom used
the same exact theme for her sister's 40th.

So we obviously aimed to center the whole party around
wine, corks, grapes- anything pretty and rustic! 
Between my mom, my aunt and myself, rounding up wine
corks wasn't that difficult anyhow. 

True Story.. 

So I obviously wanted to tie wine grapes in with the theme
for the cake! I decided on an off-white 2-tiered fondant
cake with artificial grapes (Michael's) to top!

I would typically show step-by-step pictures, etc but truth is
the "step-by-step" process was a complete disaster. 
Basically- I volunteered to provide the cake before I realized the 
party would be held on Memorial Day weekend- so I, of course, was at
the river. We made quite a routine out of going to the river in the month of May if you haven't noticed. ;) So I made the actual cake Thursday night and then
transported it with us to the river on Friday. Then I woke up Saturday 
morning and drove to my Grandma's (where the party was held) and finished the 
fondant, decorating, etc. 

It sounds a lot easier than it actually was.

Bryan drives like an absolute maniac so at every stop I was
basically clinging to the cake in a panic. Not to mention we got to 
my Grandma's about an hour before Mara showed up so it was jusstttt
a little stressful! Anyway- not my BEST but turned out good and tasted great!

I love the shade of purple that the butter cream frosting turned out,
but now looking back, I would have liked to add a little bit more of a design to the 
outside of the cake- looks so dang plain!

Here it looks a little more spruced up!
Like I said we clearly had no problem rounding up a ton of wine corks-
looks pretty & rustic!

Moving right along.....

This past weekend was Bryan's little sister, Brooke's, high school graduation!
Bryan and Brooke actually both went to Forest High- their
colors being green, white and gold- which at first didn't sound 
too appealing for a cake color scheme. I made a cake very similar to 
the one made for Mara's rustic, wine-themed 40th.
I used white fondant, dark "Forest Green" butter cream topped with
a gold Graduation Cap.

Not only was this a similar cake, but a similar
 transportation story unfortunately :/
Brooke's graduation was set to start at 8AM so they recommended
showing up between 7-7:30 for good seats. Long story short, we 
left Orlando at 2 in the morning, got to Ocala at 4 and woke up at 6:30.

I. Felt. Dead.

So clearrllyyy there was no time for cake decorating Saturday morning.
I made the cake Thursday night and decorated Friday before we left.
Again, Bryan's driving is not the best (ie. dramatic slams to the brakes at every stop
sign) so I was clinging to the cake to make sure it was secure.
I have ultimately come to the conclusion that I NEED to invent
a mini refrigerator to transport cakes and cupcakes!

Here is the cake pre-trip to Ocala!

The polka dots were a last minute addition in attempt to
tone down the exclamation mark- which was added because
"FHS" wasn't centered with "2012" which was driving me nuts-

Brooke graduated with honors and is going to SantaFe CC
in Gainesville before she starts at UF- yay! 

Here are some tips from Wilton for transporting cakes that
may have been a little beneficial this month... good to know!


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