Peppermint Lollipops and a Giveaway

These are taken straight from my girl Martha.  She was the first to teach me all about royal icing, years ago.  And I've been wanting to make these for a long time but I've never gotten a candy shaped cutter.
So I decided to make them into a peppermint lollipop with a simple circle cutter.
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You have to roll your dough a little thicker to fit a pop in.  Then bake as usual.
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Martha shows you how to do these, but I thought I'd take some pretty pictures too.
(For my recipes and an explanation on frosting consistencies, click here).
1- outline with thicker frosting
2- fill with thin
3- pop bubbles
4- make a star
5- swirl with a toothpick
6- swirl in the opposite direction
7- repeat
8- repeat
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I tied them up with tulle and displayed these on the pop tree I made.
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And they also look pretty fab on these simple pop stands.
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And in honor of having 1000 facebook fans, we are sending these to one of you. You can adorn your Halloween (next year) and Christmas sweets table with treats on a stick.  Cake, cookies, pies, cinnamon rolls, oreos, anything is cute on a stick....
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Yep, I did round two of making some stands for some future events and I was thinking of you!
-Just leave a comment if you make desserts on a stick and are interested in these!
-Tell me that you follow one way or the other.
-Enter before December 2nd.
-Or if you'd rather make your own, check out this post for simple instructions.

Just a fun little way to tell you guys that we love ya!

Twilight Baby Shower

Did you see the movie this weekend?

Well, I'm no superfan, but I like to embrace my inner teenager every so often and watch a sappy movie.

So I have this tradition (4 times running) with friends, that we have dinner together and then go to the midnight showing.  We regret our tired eyes the next day, but we have so much fun with any excuse to get together.  So I also have a friend who is having a December baby and insisted she didn't need a shower.  So I took the opportunity to turn this dinner into a surprise baby shower for her.  She knew she was coming to the dinner and movie, but didn't know it was her shower.  We embraced the twilight theme for the night.  She has a good sense of humor and could handle the silliness of her friends.

She could handle my silly newborn vampire cake pops!

I had fun with my halloween pops and knew I could turn them into "newborns" with red, blood thirsty eyes.  You know how newborns are...
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When out of the ribbon color I need, I just cut a fabric scrap.  I laughed at myself when it reminded me of a Cullen-ish scarf.  You know how fashionable those cool kids are.
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I tucked them in the place setting, complete with the coolest napkin ring around.
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Yes, twilight black and red, along with baby blue (for my friend's baby) were the colors for the night.
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I even busted out with my first movie poster ever.  Edward looked so serious, I had to make him say something cheesy.  Kathryn gave me this awesome line, "I may sparkle in the sunlight, but it's nothing compared to Leah's pregnancy glow!"  Lame and funny.  Perfect!

So the great thing about my friends is that everyone wants to help.  Literally, so many helpers, there's almost nothing left for the host to do.  I even had tell some people it was all assigned out!  So I wanted to show you how fun and creative my friends are as they embraced our silly shower theme.

My friend made fabulous invitations, inviting people to a shower for Leah and Bella.  We can't forget to celebrate Bella you guys.
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Melissa gave me permission to share her fun decorations!  She brought in these huge chess pieces and I was dying that she made them!
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I was dying even more when I looked up close and she told me she made them with paper plates, bowls, a burger king crown and other miscellaneous items.  I would've never guessed!  Creativity at it's best!
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Then she hung this wreath on my door to greet the guests.  She made it from the pages of a Twilight book!  Don't get upset, you could still read the pages if you tried really hard.  Actually, maybe not.
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She embellished with a few items taken straight from the book covers.  Melissa is killing me because she just had a baby AND busted out this fab decor.  I'm so impressed!
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Another couple of friends did "bite" sized desserts with some raspberry sauce that they labeled as blood!  It was the BEST raspberry sauce I've had.  I must get the recipe!
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And yet another creative genius friend made these vampire dinner mints.
Oooooo how I love a soft cream mint!  And in a custom design!  She used a candy mold!
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I wish I had pictures of the favors that another friend put together.  They were popcorn and candy wrapped up for them to take to the movie!  Perfect to-go treat.  And did I mention she made yummy Italian Sodas (Volturi Style) to drink!

The list goes on with the help and fun this night was.  This post supposed to be about Twilight but I'm getting side tracked thinking about how awesome my friends are.  In the end, I think our guest of honor  was truly surprised and grateful for the fun!  She rolled with it and looked past our cheesy theme!

Kathryn is worried that when her baby looks at his baby book he is going to have lots of questions about why he had a vampire baby shower.  Sorry Leah, you can blame your silly friends!

Gumdrop Turkey Cookies

Do you remember those apple turkeys you made as a kid with the gumdrops and circus peanuts?

Well, I've attempted to recreate this kids craft with cookies!  

It's "old school" craft meets new and improved craft!
And frankly, "old school turkey" looks a little jealous.  Hahahaha!
No really, the gumdrop turkey has a special place in my heart, and my kids had just as much
 fun putting them together as they did the cookie ones.

I've done a step by step tutorial over on Somewhat Simple today!
So if you're still looking for something to keep the kiddos busy while you slave over your 
meal on Thursday morning, this is a great thing to do!
Check out my guest post HERE!

Turkey Cookie Place Cards

I'm super stoked to be over on eighteen25 again today!  These 3 sisters are just fabulous!  I've been trying to see if they'll adopt Kathryn and I, but for now I'll settle on hanging out with them for the day!

I'm sharing these fun cookies that can serve as your place cards, or favors, or both!  

Go over to my guest post to see how I used the brush embroidery technique on a turkey!

And I'm positive you'll stay a while to see all of the goodness that eighteen25 has going on.  Printables, gift ideas, giveaways, and my recent fave is their "Christmas planner."  Thanks for having me again Jamie, Jodie and Jen!

Pop Tree

Hey guys!  You know I've been on a cake pop kick lately...  And I'm always on a cookie kick.

So, I can't wait to show you my latest project!  My pop tree is the perfect place to display my edible creations at Christmas time!  And you know that time of year is right around the corner...


So you must go check out the "Crazy Christmas Crafters" over at I {heart} naptime!
I am one of many guest posters who are sharing 50 Christmas ideas all month long!  50 ideas people!


Here is my "pop tree" guest post!  Come check out how I made this little pop display!




Wannabe Shark Pops

It had to go and end.  :(
Soccer is over for my little guy.  I really looked forward to my Saturdays when I could watch him run beside the ball.  (No, not in front of it).  But he was so darn cute out there.  We had a great first year of soccer and to celebrate the end, the boys needed a treat to go along with their shiny medal.

They named themselves the "blue sharks" at the beginning of the season.  And since I was totally over the shark cookies, I thought I'd try to make shark pops!
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For a minute, I thought I was a sculptor.  After my recent pop successes I thought I could conquer the pop world!  So when my cake was soft, I made these.  Then chilled them.  Then put the sticks in and chilled them some more.
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Then I started dipping.  And I looked at them.  And I thought... hmmmm.

Why do these look like fish?

My hubs pointed out that they were missing the fins on the sides.

Gahhh!  Darn pectoral fins!  No wonder!

I started to disassemble them when my husband made me stop.  It was really late and he insisted I sleep instead of correct my sharks' anatomy.  It was all I could do to heed his reasonable advice.

It was bugging me so bad!  I know they are 4 year old boys, but when it comes to my food sometimes, I get a little bit of the perfectionism bug.  The part of me that picks apart every flaw.  That nagging, disabling, perfectionism.

I thought I could get over it by adding some gummy sharks in the midst.  It helped a little.
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The boys loved their treats for the 2 seconds before they were in their stomachs.  I realized it didn't matter.  Until I looked at the pictures.  It's bugging me again!

But in an effort to ditch my tendencies and accept my mistakes, I am sharing my
"pectoral fin-less, wannabe shark pops" with you.

Matching Desserts

Remember how I like my kids' Halloween costumes to match?

Well, sometimes I like my food to match.  Cookies and cupcakes at a shower are like siblings on Halloween.  They look cute in coordinating looks.

I got to make these for a long time friend and the request was to include onesies and flowers.
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(Cupcake toppers are fondant with white royal icing accents).

Different enough to add variety, but matching enough to satisfy my "theme love."
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I wish I had a picture of the adorable banner my friend made.  It was adorable.  Because it matched.

Halloween Philosphies

I have the post Halloween drag. I'm thinking I would feel better if...

...those kids didn't keep offering me their Almond Joys and Butterfingers (that they don't like),

...I found fewer than 25 candy wrappers on the floor

...the baby didn't keep finding the kids' candy bags, unwrapping lollipops, and sharing his sticky goodness with the couch

...I didn't just make 24 cupcakes for my hubby's birthday and then eat one

Alas, the excitement of finding the right costume has worn off, and apparently Christmas is tomorrow by the looks of Hobby Lobby. But, before we say goodbye to Halloween for another year, we wanted to share a piece of our Halloween with you!

Here are my little spooks: Phantom Ballerina (who is too old to trick or treat but kindly carried baby around, and will kindly eat some of his candy, fair trade), Napoleon Dynamite, Sailor Girl, Snow Princess, Cowboy, and Indiana Jones.

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And last year: Minnie Mouse, Groovy Girl, Sock Monkey, Upside down man, Army Guy, Candy Corn Princess

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And, before I let Ashleigh have the floor for the rest of the post, I want to note, and it will not surprise those that know us, that our Halloween costume philosophy differs as follows:

Ashleigh: themed costumes, usually handmade, the perfect accessories, she could talk her kids into being anything for Halloween and liking it because they know how awesome she is and that their costume will end up perfect!

Me: I talked my kids into matching costumes once, it was 1998, Dorothy and Toto. The baby was one at the time so I'm not sure if that counts. A few of my kids (and I won't name names) have definite opinions on their Halloween costume in September and will not be dissuaded, so I have given up. I figure, they share rooms, a last name, and all the "good" groceries so it's one night they don't have to share.


*******Insert Ashleigh's Opinion*******

It's true.  I'm basically selfish.  I have a soft spot in my heart for themed costumes, and from the first Halloween I had more than one kid, I made them matching.  Mickey and Minni.
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The next year, the oldest wanted to be Ariel, so the littlest was "one of her sisters."
She doesn't look that excited about matching.  But this one year old couldn't verbalize her complaints.
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Alice and the Queen of Hearts.  Basically my fave.
Both were on board because it was their favorite movie at the time.
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Dorothy and Glinda.  This time, little sister got to be the main character.
Both on board for the theme.  Yesssssss!
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Enter Kid 3.  I'm stoked to have 3 matching kids.  They were both so excited about the baby being peter pan, they had no complaints about my fantastic idea.
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2009- The fabulous 50's.  Not sure how we came to this conclusion.  But I don't remember any crying.

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Then came 2009 & 2010.  Oldest is anti-theme.  I threw all my best ideas out there.  Cowboy and cowgirls, superheroes, etc.  THEY DIDN'T WANT THE THEME.  My sister gave me lots of talks about how happy her kids are when they get to choose.  How could I be stunting my kids' creativity?  Well, I decided to be a nice mom (normal mom), TWICE!  I had accepted being done with themes because kids grow up and it's natural.  Until...

This year.  We have come back to the theme!  I did the happy dance.  The youngest wanted to be a pirate and the girls had the idea (on their own) that they could be pirates with him.  They just wanted to wear big earrings and make-up.
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I made the fastest and easiest skirts with tied fabric and cheesecloth.
I threw in a couple of blouses and boots, and we had a pirate theme!
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So there you go.  I'm sure you can relate to Kathryn's philosophy and maybe there's a couple silly mom's like me out there that try to plant theme ideas starting in January.
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