Cupcakes? Pudding? Smoothies? Oh, what to do with the push pops....

So this is what my daughter received in the mail yesterday! She had seen lots of pictures on the blogs and asked if I would order some for her. Not a tough request ~ I love ordering fun goodies!  
As you can imagine, I was thinking that it might be some of these ideas that she wanted to try...
 The adorable Peeps mini cupcake ones by Love from the Oven
 Yummy Cake Shooters (patent pending) from Sprinkles

 Oh no, this is what she had in mind the whole time......liquids!! For some reason, my kiddos love experimenting with anything that involves the freezer and liquid!! I open up our freezer and see all different colors in the ice box (no worries, we don't use it for drinks..we learned quickly that the ice bin is used for science experiments only!) 
And when Shauna spotted the push ups on line, she knew she had found the perfect container!
So, instead of making those adorable and yummy treats this weekend, I am prepared to find my kitchen being used as a science lab (not far off from when I cook dinner each evening! lol) 
I have printed out this great list of 50+ Homemade Popsicle Recipes
After we clean up our mess, we'll let you know how they turned out!

CAKE POP ICE CREAM CONES ~ my new favorite for a dessert bar



I  have to be honest, I hate making cake pops! I make a huge mess...they fall off the stick into the chocolate, they fall apart when I am trying to scoop them out...just a mess! So much so, that last week after making hamburger cupcakes (great tutorial) with the kids, we made up some cake balls and after 'trying' a few pops, I just left the balls in the freezer. I was over it. (yes, it might be because I see all of the gorgeous Bakerella-type pops on the blogs and that is my goal that I am far under-achieving!)
A few days ago, as I was looking at pictures of a beautiful baby shower on Custom Candy Buffet's facebook page, I noticed a cake ball in a mini sugar cone...it was gorgeous and sweet for a dessert buffet. I immediately thought of the frozen cake balls and thought maybe I could handle a cone better than a stick!
I knew my chances of finding mini sugar cones around here was slim but thought I might be able to find some regular kid cones (bonus~they will stand on their own on a dessert buffet). I grabbed a bag of the Wilton candy chips, some sprinkles...and the frozen cake balls.....and look what I made! 
I wasn't going to take any chances of dropping the ball in the chocolate, so I dipped the cones in enough to cover the rim. Then I dipped the bottom of the cake ball, enough so that it would help adhere to the cone.  I let them harden, then dipped the whole cone in, enough to cover the cake.
YAY ME!!! Nothing fell apart and they came out so cute! The kids are hooked up with a fun after school snack today! 
I have a big baby shower coming up soon, I may have to experiment a bit with pink, white and green 'ice cream'.  
There are so many possibilities ~ elegant like the ones I mentioned above, Bakerella's version (here) or just plain, simple and cute, like these! 
I think they will be lots of fun on a dessert table!

VIP Diva Birthday Celebration...

 A diva celebration...of course, that would be the party request from an 8 year old..four weeks before her birthday, right?
I work on a lot of parties, locally, with The Playroom, who had just opened Limelight Salon...what better location for a VIP Diva Celebration! I knew I was limited on time so I  immediately checked out ETSY and found the perfect invitations!


I wanted something bright and bold for the backdrop on the dessert table but wanted to do something different than a banner...Shauna sees those daily!  We cut out cardboard in the shape of an 8 and used floral wire to attach boas. It provided the pop of color I was looking for! And with the gorgeous cupcakes from Sabrosa Cupcakes, the incredible cookies from Tracie and whoopie pies from Dawna....I had all the color I needed on the table!
My initial thought was to go with the zebra prints.  But on a last minute shopping trip, I found these blocks at Home Goods. 
 
The sayings were perfect!  As soon as I got I home, I sat down and worked on the labels, bottle wraps, etc...nope, 
not feeling any pressure!! Changing everything within 48 hours of the party! 
'Champagne' and cotton candy cocktails were a huge hit! Shauna had been wanting to try them since seeing the 'real' ones made with vodka on Food Network!

Cosmetic cases for little girls....have you ever tried to find one??? I was on a mad search. After having all the Targets in Maine and three in Orlando, hold the existing Caboodles cases they had, I came across these great clear ones online... I knew that I could add vinyl initials and bling them out a bit! (luckily they arrived two days before the party, along with the make up kit!
Home Goods was a great resource for the make up favors! And the girls had a blast filling their cases! We had thought about making gumballs necklaces but Shauna thought they might be too busy with hair, make up and dress up. And that they were!
Shauna's make up team consisted of Lux (owner of The Limelight Salon/Playroom and stylist), Brittany (friend and daughter of my awesome photographer/whoopie pie maker/friend, Dawna) and Aunt Alicia doing nails! I found it funny that the majority of Shauna's entourage just happened to have hair extensions/wig of their own! 
And this is what they produced...my lil' Diva!
(notice the Team Diva shirts I ordered for the entourage)

I knew when I saw these taffy lip lollipops, on clearance at Wal Mart, that they would be the perfect prop for the girls once they were all glammed up!                                            
The girls had a blast posing....whether it was the lips, microphones or just the fact that they were all glam'd up!
I think my favorite part was when they went behind the 'curtain of tinsel' ...it was as though they had forgotten any adults could still see/hear them...they were giggling and posing and admiring each others hair-do's and once they walked through that curtain...they were all diva!
Happy 8th Birthday to my lil Diva!

Dr. Suess' Birthday ~ a day of gratitude

 Dr. Seuss & gratitude?  Let me explain... 
Eight years ago, Shauna was born healthy but within 24 hrs had a very high temperature/infection. After doing a spinal and other tests at the local hospital with no results, they ambulanced her to the Barbara Bush Children's Hospital at Maine Medical Center. You can imagine ~ new mom...lots of hormones/emotions swirling...watching my new baby girl in her little cage hooked up to iv's. And as I lay in bed looking out into the hallway, I saw the children walking the halls with their iv poles. Or as I walked to get coffee and passed by rooms, I saw the children...many with no hair from chemo, very ill laying in their beds.
 After a few more spinals and other tests, it was determined that they could not figure out what was wrong with Shauna but that she was on her way to good health... as long as we stayed hooked up to antibiotics for 14 days. I was thrilled...but...feeling a bit guilty as I saw the emotions in each room of these very sick children...they were not getting the same news. 
While we were there, on March 2, we were invited to join all the kids on the floor for a celebration of Dr. Seuss' birthday!  The Cat in the Hat would be visiting  and people in the community had come in to read Dr. Seuss books and celebrate with a cake. 
And as I sat there with Shauna hooked up to her little iv pole, I looked around the room, knowing that many of those children may not leave the hospital and many had long hard fights ahead of them. 
But at that moment, all I saw around me was huge smiles and laughter. It was so heartwarming! That's what celebrations all are about...the moments and the memories! 
Not that I need much to make me appreciate all that I have but each year around this time, images of that crazy cat with the red and white hat always remind me that I am truly blessed!! 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DR. SEUSS!