Friday, September 30, 2011

My Adventure with the Cake Ball

So, I am horrible at baking cakes. Seriously. Even out of the box, they are lop sided, fall apart, crumble, whatever. Well, I love eating the cake ball (and I just ate one of my own!) and you have to be able to crumble a cake to do it, so it sounds like the perfect new dessert to add to my kids parties, holidays, events, etc. After researching at least a dozen recipes, tips, techniques, I set out to experiment with the cake ball.

Thank god I was making cake balls cause my cake seriously broke in half putting it on the cooling rack (see, I told you!). I went with the technique of mixing the cake with the frosting while it was warm. I tried a couple different methods on when and how to make the balls and the best one seemed to be letting the mixture cool in the fridge for a couple of hours and then using your hands to roll the ball. The melon baller is a pain to keep floured and the balls came out too small and took forever to dip. Next time I am going to just scoop a glob out with a spoon and hand roll them, or maybe even an ice cream scoop for some big ones. I did a batch after the cake balls were in the freezer for about 2 hours, and it seemed like they weren't cold enough so I let them freeze all night and they were really easy to work with this morning. I played with four different dipping methods. The whole toothpick method is just annoying, having to go back and fill in the hole, it just doesn't look pretty. I ended up settling on using a chocolate dipping tool I found in my many drawers of random kitchen utensils. It had a circle on the end, making to easy to coat the ball.

It is definitely time consuming, but more because of the waiting. It is really easy though and I am not trying to sell them or anything, but for the occasional treat at home or dessert to a party, there are endless possibilities. This batch definitely was not the prettiest, but are actually really yummy!! I might only use 3/4 of the frosting can next time cause it is a bit overwhelming, but gooey is good.

Friday, September 16, 2011

My Date with Ikea!

Last Wednesday, I met some of my Mommy friends for an Ikea play date. We dropped some of the kids off at the play center where you can leave them for an hour to go crazy and play while you shop. Of course, my child with her separation anxiety would not set foot in there, but the other kids had fun! So, I have seen some great ideas online and I love Ikea Hackers to find new ideas with the same old Ikea pieces. I thought I'd share my projects I completed and my purchases from my date with Ikea.

First, and my favorite! I picked up some plastic stools ($7.99 each) and used an Ikea side table (also $7.99) a friend gave me to make Lily a tea table for her room, and she LOVES it. It provokes her imagination and I already caught her having a tea party with Mawna, the bear! I covered the top of the end table in a durable fabric, cupcake print of course and it is the perfect accessory to a little girl's room.

My next Ikea inspiration came with the use of spice racks, spice racks for book shelves! Who would have thought??? I feel like half of our books go unread because they sit in a conventional book shelf and we just read the sames ones over and over again. I saw this idea and had to copy it. I'll switch out the books based on the seasons, occasions, relevant event, etc. and keep books for easy viewing! I painted the bottom of the spice racks in some matching colors to Lily's room too! You can't beat $3.99 a piece.

My last purchase wasn't anything creative, but I saw this adorable frog prince hanging baskets and had to have it. I wasn't sure what I was going to do with it, but I go to eliminate the tub of Barbies in her room and now they are easy to access and even easier to clean up!

I hope you enjoyed my date with Ikea! I will be going back soon, once I find a place for my new round of inspiration, ha. <3 Julie

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Football Season is here!!

I just wanted to share a picture of my babies on the first football Saturday of the year! Of course, Lily's dress is one of mine. :)

The crafts of a power outage...

This last weekend, we experienced a few power outages, so I utilized the time without tv to do some fun fall crafts.

The first one we did was a great idea I saw on Pinterest, a ghost canvas with the kids' foot prints! I love how it turned out. I know it is only September, but I already hung it in my house!

I also took a scrap of wood leftover from some new shelves and with some cute cut outs from the cricut and some mod podge, I made a reversible mantel decor piece. I'll have the fall side out until Thanksgiving and then switch it to the Christmas one. A decor item for 2 season in one piece!

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