Hats Off Graduate 2018

I don’t take commissioned baking orders very often as they can be challenging to schedule with busy-as-usual-life and a full time day job, but every now and then I jump at the chance to make something special for someone 😉 This was a fun high school graduation cake for one of my co-worker’s daughters, and I am happy with how it turned out.

EVENING 1: Research recipes, select final recipe and shop for ingredients

The request was for a chocolate vanilla marble cake, and I’d never made one before, but felt happy with this recipe I found online. Granted, I wasn’t able to make the party, so was not able to taste it and critique the texture, moistness etc. but I hope the guests were pleased.

EVENING 2: Bake the cake layers and cover completely to chill overnight in the refrigerator to be firm enough to frost

Instructions: Vanilla > Chocolate > Vanilla > Marble with knife 🙂

EVENING 3: Trim and level the cake layers and prepare to stack, crumb coat, frost and decorate!

I didn’t realize the marble effect would be so visible after trimming the cakes in preparation for stacking them – so beautiful!

After mulling over the direction the decoration would take, and having gone through several iterations in my head, I landed on a simple ombre-like effect from red (as red as I could get this frosting! Also–one of the high school colors) to white, a medley of sprinkles (of course!), and some fun starburst-flower-like piping! I’ve seen many cakes use a similar piping technique, and it always seems a bit whimsical and loose and still each one unique.

First round of decoration finished and chilling in the refrigerator… I considered stopping at this point, but decided that a high school graduation cake should have more pizzaz! I also knew what the custom cake topper looked like and decided that it should have a more hefty supporting role below 🙂

Final product! <3

And the custom cake topper that would be united with its cake at the party!

Carrot Rose Topper Cupcakes

The only rose in/on these cupcakes is the shape of the carrot peel topper – no actual rose flavoring 🙂 I recently saw this technique on a blog and decided they were far too cute not to try myself. Got myself some rainbow carrots with tops and went to work!

There’s only so much you can do photographing your baked goods with your camera phone when you have a little more time in the evening inside, under artificial lighting…

But I did snap this tupperware shot in the morning (better lighting!) of some of the cupcakes that went to work with me 🙂 Loving the variety of cupcake and carrot rose topper sizes. ??

RIce Cream Krispie Treat

I spotted this idea online somewhere recently, but when I went back to find it again, I couldn’t! But the idea is pretty simple – sculpt rice krispie treats into the fun shape of an ice cream cone!

I chose to keep it simple this time and used regular rice krispies and cocoa krispies cereal, but you could add some color and/or flavoring to the marshmallows for other options. For example, pink for strawberry or pale green and chocolate chips for a mint chip ice cream look 🙂 The possibilities are endless! I considered making a red fondant cherry for the top, but ended up only using some sprinkles to add color and festivity to this cheery birthday surprise 😀

First I sketched out my approximate size and shape on white parchment paper over a half sheet pan…

Then covered the sketched parchment paper with a clean parchment sheet and taped it down/used non-slip squares to help when spreading/sculpting the krispies. It was a bit tricky to sculpt as it hardens fairly fast and is also hot off the stove. But butter up your fingers and stay calm and it will work out 🙂 They did remain slightly malleable even at the end for some minor adjustments.

I wanted two cone drips, but ended up settling for one once I got sculpting! Keep an extra pan nearby for the rice krispie mix that you don’t use and ask a helper to take care of that while you put the finishing touches on the design.

Overall, I’m pretty happy with how this RIce Cream Krispie Treat turned out, and I am eager to try some other “flavors” and maybe even shapes! Donuts? Flowers? Letters? oh my.

Birthday desk surprise

Friends at work have gotten into the fun tradition of decorating each others’ desks for birthdays! My favorite part is dreaming up personalized and specialized themes that are fun and fit the person we are celebrating, and seeing what we all bring and how it comes together. The latest was a collection of vignettes that included Easter, candy, chocolate, cute, minis, marathon runners, gluten-free, snow sports…

Birthday desk surprise

I baked this gluten-free chocolate cake from Bob’s Red Mill, and decorated it with fluffy vanilla “snow” frosting, coconut, mini skaters, daring skiiers, a marshmallow snowman and a cute gingerbread house!


Christmas of 2008, I received these plastic Jell-O Jiggler letter cut-outs. I use them primarily for cookie cutters, and have way too much fun. 🙂



I remember making cookie names for all of my neighbors and friends, and I am sure many more than I have thought to capture digitally, but here are some examples…

Team SOU







But I also love it when I send or give these customized cookie letter messages to people, and they send me back photos of their new word combinations….. 🙂




Christines thank you



IMGjeff luvs forks


Race Car Cake… inspired by true events

My boyfriend and I made a race car birthday cake, reminiscent of our friend’s actual race car. Our friend has been working on maintaining what started out as a 1986 Chevrolet Chevette suitable for racing at events, such as the ChumpCar race that takes place at Portland International Raceway. In his first race, he won the trophy for the “Spirit of ChumpCar”! You can follow his facebook page here!

The car itself has gone through quite a series of transformations as far as paint jobs, decor, tires, other parts and engines are concerned; besides tires, he is even known for switching out engines mid-race!



We sculpted the double-layer chocolate cake, and decorated accordingly….


Beginning to take shape…





Crumb coat complete…


Final frosting layer complete


Side 1 View


Front View


Side 2 View


Back View






At the party, he made yet another engine switch….



…this time with the hatch!


Baby Shower Cupcakes

A friend and I planned our friend Suzie’s baby shower together… we had fun planning the custom ‘Welcome’ board, and some themed refreshments and games. I originally saw these baby face cupcakes at another baby shower the month before and am still searching for those original images since I stole the inspiration! 🙂 We also decorated with more balloons and had a framed message board for guests to write notes to welcome Baby Han.


Table display


Custom ‘Welcome’ Board


Baby face cupcakes with bonnets!




Mystery baby food guessing game…


Baby food taste test


Some game prizes (baby food guessing game, pregnant tummy yarn diameter guess, animal baby name match with adult animal name)


Popcorn snacks