Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Cake Class

Wilton Course I, Class III

Nothing much to report from this class. We pretty much just learned how to make different accents such as a cherry, grapes and clown. We decorated cupcakes with them at this class.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Zucchini Explosion!

I thought my plants were acting weird because I had a bunch of little zucchini's and they weren't getting big fast. It seemed like last year, once they appeared, they grew to full size over night. Well, I was wrong because I didn't look at them for a couple days and now I have HUGE zucchini's!

I put an envelope in there as a point of reference as to how big they are:

The bottom one is a cucumber...

Monday, July 21, 2008

New Old House

I want to create a "New Old House" with the new house and I've found the perfect elements to achieve this!

I want this door handle:

But with this knob:

and these hinges:

I think they'll fit perfect into the craftsman theme.

They have all sorts of awesome stuff. These would be neat to add but not a necessary thing - and THEY'RE EXPENSIVE!

Cake Class #2

Wilton Course I, Class II

The second class was based on starting to make the rose and decorating our first cake. I learned how to transfer a pattern onto the cake. You take a piece of paper with your design on it, put wax paper over it and pipe some piping gel over the design. Then you flip the wax paper onto the cake where you want the design, rub and take the wax paper off. Then you can go ahead and pipe your frosting onto the cake!

Here are some images of the cake!

Monday, July 14, 2008

New Keyboard! Bye Bye Carpal Tunnel.

I got a new keyboard today at work. It's the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000. It's weird. It sits up high under your wrists.

It's going to get some taking used to but hopefully it'll save my wrists for the future. I get pains up them every once in a while.

Cake decorating class

Wilton Course I, Class I

I started a cake decorating class last Wednesday - it's at Michaels and based off of the Wilton courses. So this class follows course 1 and is 4 sessions. The first class focused on the basics of frosting and tools. I actually learned more than I thought I would.

Obviously there are different consistencies of frosting but I never really thought about it that way. You need to make stiff, medium and thin frosting for different projects you are doing. Stiff for flowers and such that need to stand up. Medium for the broadest range of items. Thin for frosting the cake and writing. I learned about Meringue powder which helps to stabilize the frosting and about piping gel which is used for.....piping! This can also be added to buttercream frosting to aid in writing.

I learned that there is an icing tip to help you apply the buttercream to the cake so that you do not get cake crumbs in the frosting.

I learned that to get a cake perfectly smooth with buttercream frosting, you can frost it, let it crust over and then put wax paper on top and smooth the cake on top of the wax paper.

I'm going to be making a rainbow cake this week and learning how to transfer a pattern and start to learn how to make roses.

I'm so excited! :)

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Scratch that idea.

I don't think there is going to be enough room along the south wall to switch the orientation of the living room. So what I think we'll do is to make that whole wall like the right side of that photo. With a big three panel picture window along the wall and a built in bench under it.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Newest House Idea!

I'm thinking we could switch the orientation of the living room and do sort of the following on the wall that is the front of the house.

We're doing an electric fireplace but we can build it in like this one and put shelves into the built out part for the tv and components. Then do like the right side of this pic on both sides. I really like the left side built ins but i really want to be able to see out of the front of the house.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

First Real Sewing Project

I got my sewing machine for Christmas but I haven't really used it because the house has been staged. Right away I just made a table cloth to cover the card table it was sitting on so it would look a little nicer for potential home buyers. Since we still haven't sold our house, I've decided to just go ahead and use the room. I still have to clean it up every time and there are probably a few things out more than what looks the best but oh well. So here is my first real project. It turned out fairly well I'd have to say. Up close it's kind of a mess and the stitching isn't necessarily that straight :)

See the white spots at the end of the handles. Yeah, I had to make them longer. Oops.

I made sure to make lots of pockets inside since small things can easily get lost in this big of a bag.

I think my next attempt will be a blanket. Adam wants a lighter blanket with no "stuffing" in it for the summer for our bed. I have a pattern for a "rag" blanket and found some material patterns that look nice together.

Plant Shelf Type Wall

My newest idea for the new house is to lower the wall in between the kitchen and living room about two feet. So it'll look kind of like this:

I think it'll help with light and air flow and make it feel a little more open???? We'll have 9 foot ceilings so two feet down should be alright. We have 9 ft ceilings in our current house and there is a soffet that runs above one side of our kitchen right now. It still gives a little room above the cabinets for me to set stuff on top of them.

Saturday, July 5, 2008


After many many weekends with no time at home to lounge, we finally get to rest!

Fondant Cake - Second Attempt

Here is my second attempt with fondant frosting. I made a cake for the 4th of July. I made the fondant from scratch this time instead of using the Wilton kind. It's super easy. Just take a bag of small marshmallows and put a tablespoon of water in them. Then melt them. Grease the counter thoroughly with Crisco. Dump half of a 2 pound bag of powdered sugar on top and then stir until slightly mixed. It will be hot! Careful! Then dump this mixture on the counter and add more powdered sugar. Grease hands as well. Knead. Add more powdered sugar and crisco as needed. If the fondant is tearing, add a little more water. If possible wrap in saran wrap and put in ziplock bag over night so there will be no powdered sugar clumps.

Here is the cake!

Chris said it looked professional and everyone else liked it a lot! I think I should have used fondant for the whole thing instead of the buttercream stripes but I'm still learning! All in all a success!

Here was my first attempt. Only back in April but I've learned a lot since then by reading online and by watching Ace of Cakes on Food Network. I used the Wilton fondant which was harder to work with, didn't knead the coloring into it and didn't know how to fix the hole I made in the side.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

So Clean

Our backyard freshly mowed and clean from a summer rain.