Gabe’s 12th Birthday Cake Challenge

3 02 2012

I had a really hard time trying to come up with theme for Gabe’s birthday this year.  He’s officially a tween. (tears).  He’s not really into sports so a sports theme was out and that was pretty much the only idea I could find on google.   So with all the craziness around cake decorating I decided to set up a Cake Challenge for his party.

I got my cake supplies from a couple of sources.  Jesters Cake Supply I used for my fondant, rollers and impression.  They have really good prices.  Especially on the fondant.  One five pound bucket was enough for both cakes.  I also used my coupon at Michael’s to pick up a few things and I went to Scoop n’ Save which is local for me.  They always have a great selection.

I also bought chef  coats in blue in green.

My wonderful, talented friend Maria did the graphic design for me. I cut out differnent size circles in coordinating colors and hung them from the ceiling.  It turned out really cool.  For give aways I filled candy jars and added the graphic to the paper bags which the boys got to fill just before they were ready to leave.

I did some prep work before the party.  I pre made all of the cakes and icing.  I made two three tier cakes.  A ten Inch, eight inch and six inch.  Two layers for each.  I’m not going to lie….it was a lot of cake. If I were to do it again mayb a couple of styrofoam layers would of been a good idea. I also made a big batch of buttercream and big batch of royal icing and put those into rubbermaids.  Didn’t think making icing during the event was a good idea.

This is me making a complete disaster of my kitchen:

I decided before hand that part of the challenge would be to make a cake that goes with the themed colors for the party.  This helped because I bought decorations that would work.   It also made what colorings to get a lot easier.  I also enlisted the help of family and friends.  The girls in my life are amazing.  I had one friend in charge of icing bags and an adult on each team to help decorate.  The fondant is a bit challenging so the kids needed some help, and lets face it….how could we not jump in??

Important steps to cake decorating you NEED to know:

Each cake layer will need to be covered in buttercream.  middle layer and outside.

You will need something in each layer to keep them from collapsing.  I used big straws which I cut to size, but you can also use small dowels.  Straws are easier to cut though.

Buy gloves because coloring the fondant is messy!

If you’ve never done this before…. don’t worry.  That is what You Tube is for.  Watch some tutorials and do a practice cake if your nervous.  I’ve only ever made one fondant cake before this.

Upon arrival everyone got to put on their chef coats.  I had a bunch of snack off to the side so everyone could munch while they decorate. I broke everyone up into two teams. Green and Blue.  They were given the rules.

They were:

1.  The cake needs to match the theme of the party.

2. Each cake must have a figure on top that represents the birthday boy.

3. Each team member must contribute.

4.  Adults are only allowed to assist.  Not do. (We had trouble with this rule you may want to skip it)

5.  Two hours to finish.

I ordered the chef coats from Happy Chef Uniforms.  I got a really great deal and the boys got to take them home.

On with the challenge!

After planning our cakes we all dove in.  Took about three minutes to break rule number 4.

OK….I know this looks bad but I swear the kids got to do most of it!

Needed to keep the tiny chefs busy of course!

I put out a lot of snacks for the kids to munch on and half way through we took a break for pizza.

We also had a time challenge.  I member from each team had to try to eat the most freeze dried beans (you know the edible salted kind) they could in 3o seconds.  Loser had to sit out for 5 minutes.  I am so mad I didn’t get a picture because it was REALLY funny.  (They were so grossed out)

The kids were totally into it.  They worked hard and had fun.  After our time was up each team  had to carry their cakes to the “judging table” to be judged.


These two are just too cute for words.

Hope you enjoyed!


Cowboy Birthday Party

18 01 2012

For Romy’s fourth birthday we threw him a cowboy party.  It was super fun and the kids loved.  Here’s what I did…

For Romy’s third birthday I decided on a cowboy theme.  It turned out really great and didn’t matter what age the kids were they enjoyed themselves.  I wish I had taken more pictures but I though I would share the ones I do have and the ideas I came up with.

Upon arrival all of kids were given a bag containing:

1.  A cowboy hat


3. plastic gun in holster (I made sure all the parents were ok with that first)

4. sheriff badges

5. fake moustaches

6. and those cute horse heads on a stick.

A lot of the guests dressed up and the  kids loved it.

I bought my decorations and party supplies off the internet, local dollar stores and party supplies.  Shopping around for whatever the current best deals saved me a ton of money.  This was a couple of years ago so it’d be worth doing a bit of exploring on your own.  If you need any info just ask and I’ll see if I can find it for you.

The cowboy boot mugs were one of my favorite finds.  I served root beer floats in them.

We played a few games shown above the kids had to shoot empty tin cans off the hay stacks.  I kept pails of water near by so it was easy to refill them.  Prizes were little plastic hopping frogs.

I gave jumping frogs and harmonicas for prizes.

Games we played included:

Shooting the tin cans off the hay piles with water guns….which then turned into a water fight (so fun).

Panning for gold.

Mike made an elevated trough out of some wood scraps, we added some sand and I put some gold-colored rocks I found in the dollar store in it.  I then punched some holes into tin pie plates for the “panning”  each child got a mini galvanized pail which, after they filled,  they then brought to the “candy store” to use to buy candy.

The kids also had a water gun fight and they took turns trying to toss rubber snakes into a cowboy boot.

I also rented a couple of the ponies for the kids as a surprise.  They loved it. Two ponies for an hour was about $200.  I actually think I could done with less time because from 3-5 the attention isnt’ quite there for long periods of time.  I let any of the neighborhood kids ride if they wanted to as well.

For dinner I served sliders, salad, hot dogs, chip….you know the usual suspects.

After dinner we moved the hay stack around a fire pit for the kids to roasted marshmallows.  It was a very dry summer so there was fire restrictions.  I found these cool cleaning burning gel packs.  No sparks and controlled flame…which I really liked since there were little ones there and it was definitely a lot safer….minus the flaming marshmallows.  Those were a little dangerous.  Oh, and the metal sharply pronged marshmallow stick…those gave me a bit of heart attack as well.

Here’s a picture of Romy with the only authentic cowboy at the party…..his Papa.

I also set up a little photo booth which I got some really great pictures of the guests.

It was a fun party.  Hope you enjoyed!

Scooby Doo Birthday Party

19 09 2011

For Romy’s fourth birthday he requested a Scooby Doo Birthday party.  My first instinct was to go online and order the typical hats, plates and tacky table covers.  I started doing some poking around on the internet and realized even though the birthday is themed I can add tons of personal touches.  The kids invited to the party ranged from 6 months to 13 years old….so instead of planning activities I just let them all play,  and the kids had their fun doing whatever they wanted to do.  I was so lucky the weather cooperated with usgiving us the perfect day for an outdoor party!

IMG_7760We rented a long children’s size table and stool for the which worked out great for them. They loved being able to sit together for the party and I have to say they looked pretty darn cute while they did!


I made the party hats.  I loved all of the great ideas I found on Pinterest and came up with these cuties.  I will never buy a party hat again!


IMG_7659 I decided after looking at cakes on the internet and watching Cake Boss a million times that I could definitely do a fondant cake on my own.  Why I let me talk myself into these things i’ll never know.  The average person would say, “I should take a course so I can do something like that too.” Or maybe do a small practice cake to see what is involvled.  I was convinced I could do it and I would definitely save some money.  Well….after buying all of the supplies I definitely spent more that I would of on one ordered form a professional.  I watched numerous videos and you tube and realized there was no turning back. With the help of my friend Maria and sister Joey (who both had never made fondant cakes either, we did not too badly!  We had to strategically place some of the fondant decor but I am very happy with how it turned out. (I’ll save money next time for sure!) Borrowed some ideas from some incredibly talented people on the internet.


Favours were a combo of me and my wonderful friend Maria who printed off the Scooby Doo graphics for me.   I think everyone needs a Maria Smile   I gave away Scooby masks. magnifying glasses, balls, bubbles, and scooby doo rings.  Its always tricky to cusomize for different age groups but putting everything in orange sand buckets worked perfectly to help keep them sorted out.

I ordered the Scooby Snacks from an online grocer in the U.S. They are so cute and made the best favours.  Sadly, I don’t think they are making them anymore.


Now just add kids ………


It was such a fun party and Romy had a blast.  Thanks to sites like Pinterest and amazing bloggers birthday parties will never be the same again… it!

%d bloggers like this: