Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Changing mounts...

For Sarah that is. A few weeks ago we found out Dibbs, Sarah's stablemate of choice, is heading out to greener pastures to be a lawn ornament (as he well deserves). Sarah got one last good ride in on him last week, and this week began riding a new horse. She's such a nervous Nellie anyways, this is a hard change on her.
Mom was along (that being me) with camera in tow to take photos.
I'm so proud of her, she's hanging tough. Sarah's had the school of hard knocks with horse riding, she seems to be out of the saddle more than in, but she's coming around these days and staying tough. Today was no exception, she managed her ride, no nervous breakdowns, on the new boy despite some challenges. George belongs to one of the ladies at the barn, and she allows him to be used for lessons, and he's SUCH a love that Sarah couldn't resist his charm. are she and George, with no further ado

Here she is waiting, loving "her horse" as she told me when I offered to hold him.

And their first ride together. He did get a bit spooked once and scared them both, but all in all they did great together, and she's happy. And since I have a soft spot for old George anyways, I am pleased they work well together.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Fun cake for a friend

Last night I had some fun!! My friend and most awesome next door neighbor's husband's birthday and their wedding anniversary are this month, and she ordered him a big ole cake.
I haven't done a cake like this in a while, all the carving, and stuff.
So I thought I'd share.

Covered the board in fondant and did a wood flooring kind of effect. You can find a tutorial for this here. Then, carved my cake for the big bottle and made the other two from rice cereal treats. Covered it all in fondant to finish it up, and some love for my airbrush made the coloring happen! My favorite part of course was making the sugar ice, I love to do that. I made two sorts, a shard looking kind and then formed pieces. You can find a tutorial for that here at Melissa Dotson's Decorate the Cake.

Not a very great picture, b/c light at 2am isn't so great :) Hope you enjoy, and Happy Birthday and Anniversary my friends!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Discovering gems we didn't know existed...

Last Sunday we set out with the intention of having some fun with our kiddos. We wound up at the Baton Rouge Zoo. The Baton Rouge zoo is a part of the Baton Rouge Rec Center system, which is a huge amount of places to do and see in Baton Rouge. Typically, we visit the Audobon Zoo, and love it so much we are members, but sometimes you need a change. about a diamond in the rough. It's a small zoo, but you could NOT ask for a cleaner, friendlier or more child friendly atmosphere. Just enough animals to keep the kids happy, a very well thought out map to follow, and wonderful caretakers that were friendly to our children and talked with them a bit about the flamingos. Even more exciting was it was only $21 TOTAL for the five of us to get in!
Well, as we were pulling out of the driveway from the zoo, we saw a sign that said "Don't forget to visit our Cohn Arboretum, it's free!! So off we went. Acres and acres of the most gorgeous plants. I was in camera happy momma heaven. I had been trying forever to explain painted devil grasshoppers as we called them as kids to MY kids. This place was FULL of them. Ages ago, when I was young, my Gramps' yard was chock full of them, and he loved to scare you by putting them on you. I LOVED my Gramps, so it was a wonderful memory for me to see them.
Of COURSE I took a million pictures, and had a hard time choosing which ones to share with you guys, so bare with me.
I found it so invigorating to be walking around in the gorgeous outdoors with my kids, and to imagine it was all so inexpensive is amazing to me. When you have three children, doing things can be VERY expensive, and I was so pleased to see BREC working to enrich childrens lives so much.
First, some zoo pictures:

This one I find SO funny, it's TOO hot for soft serve in
Louisiana in July and August!!

My absolute favorite zoo mammal!!

and..a family favorite, we FLOCK to see the flamingos!!

My own two meerkats ( I insisted prairie dogs, they meerkats, too much Animal Planet!

And then on to the Arboretum

My "painted devil grasshoppers", I have no idea what they really are.

This fella was hard to get, I had to manually focus him in, but I LOVE this picture!

And..four of God's most perfect creations (all made for me, 3 with my help!)

Saturday, August 1, 2009

A couple of special cakes

These two cakes I have had on the books for months! It's nice to know that someone loves these people enough to think about them that far in advance.
The smiley face cake has such a sweet story. Without sharing the personal story of my client, the smiley face makes the groom smile in remembrance, so she chose that as a theme. It was a HUGE smile, 14 inches round. Then we added chocolate covered strawberries, three pints of them! I love California strawberries this time of year, they're so HUGE and sweet. There were so many I couldn't put them all on the board so I sent them with my client. She bought this cake as a gift, so I'm hoping that it went over well with the bride and groom, I love cakes with meaning.
The 2nd cake I did this weekend was inspired by a cake that the client found online. I'd love to give credit where credit is due, but I don't know who the original decorator was. Originally, I purchased a mold for the topper, but found it was WAY too small. So..I got out my handy dandy $1 knife from Pampered Chef and some fondant and went at it, and I must say, I'm pretty proud of my eagle! I used my consultant's advice and put the blue background (that would be Sarah) under the eagle to make him pop some. The name and all I honestly admit I wasn't sure about, but it's how the original cake was, and I wound up liking it. I WAS wishing Sharon was here (my buddy at SugarEd) to roll my fondant, but I was pleased with how this cake came out all together, and my client seemed to like it also. GOTTA love the airbrush for colors like this, no way could I have gotten a clean fondant job if I had kneaded all that color into my fondant.
So...on to the pictures, which is what we know you really wanted anyway right?

My smile (that made me smile):

And a retirement cake for a man who CERTAINLY deserved a cake!! Praise God for our men and women in the military,
they deserve SO much!

And..a little gripe...and warning for my caking friends. I used Pettinice for this cake. I opened a FRESH sealed package of it, to find 1/4 of it was dried out and hard and crusty. I thought I cut all of it out, but there were hard pebbles still in it that caused me NIGHTMARES, so, I'm off of Pettinice for a while if this is what it's going to do.