Monday, January 31, 2011

The Making of a Dino Cake

You all know Erin, blog regular, friend since 4th grade and mommy to beautiful baby Aviana. She is also my resident cake expert and creator of this masterpiece and this one too.

I invited her to help me make a dinosaur cake for Charley's birthday, and man did we put in some long hours. Mostly because we made ALOT of cake, and also because we had one or two snafoos (did you know that using Pam does not work on a nonstick cake pan...I do now).

All in all our cakes were FABULOUS. Thank you Auntie Erin!

We started with some cupcakes. Dinos standing in green grass. I guess not all of the kids got the message that you could keep them, as I'm still finding dinos stashed around the house.

messy kitchen in progress

It was my sister in law Becky's birthday too so we made her a snowflake cake. Erin makes that look too easy.

The kids were dying to help us so we made them their own little cake to destroy...I mean decorate.

As the evening drug on Erin put me in charge of decorating the remaining cupcakes while she worked on the dino himself. We were out of green so I made these. Can you believe Erin and Jeremy made fun of my artistic skills?

(Actually what they mostly made fun of was me trying to utlized the Wilton tips and shooting icing all over the place. Do you wonder why I was for Erin's help? )

Using a template from Betty Crocker we turned two 9in round cakes into a dino!

The finished cake spread. Gorgeous.

Charley did not want to wait for his party guests. We had to hold him off with leftover hershey kisses.

Fully approved by the birthday boy and all his friends!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

For the Birds

Today the kids and I made bird feeders today!

We started with ice cream cones (just like our Christmas trees!), cut off the tips, made a knot in some string and fed it through.

The girls coated the cones in peanut butter, then we stuck on lots of birdseed and cheerios.

Charley just coated his cone and then sucked it all off

This project is messy, very messy.

But the easy way to cleanup... scrape it all onto a place mat and throw it out the back door!

Ta-da! Wait until our faithful squirrel and his wife get a whiff of this.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Charley's 2nd Year Video

It's hard to believe that Charley's 2nd birthday is on Thursday. Jeremy has once again used his awesomely artistic movie making skills to make us a slide show of the past year.

Looking back I can see how VERY much he has changed. This time last year, he wasn't even walking yet! Now he's a full blown running, jumping, talking, dive bombing adventurer.

Enjoy! Make sure your sound is on for the music and audio.

Charley's 2nd Year Slideshow from Laura Sargent Bennington on Vimeo.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Wine (or Diet Coke) and Canvas

Look what I did tonight! I had so much fun and am still in shock over my creation. I actually painted something. Like a real painting, not finger paint. With a brush and canvas and everything!

My friend Cindi has been to several events hosted by this place called Wine and Canvas. They have a studio but also do events at local restaurants around Indy. Basically you go and drink (and eat if you want to) and take a painting class in the banquet room or a restaurant. It was fan-flipping-tastic.

My clean pallete and blank canvas

We started by making a sunset. I learned all about blending blending and blendig some more (just like makeup application).

My friend Cindi, hard at work.

Working on my sunset. I chose diet coke instead of wine mostly because I had to drive myself home. There were some super yummy smelling appetizers around, making me think we should go back to this place to eat sometime.

My completed sunset!

We took a drying (and potty) break and came back to add a tree. I was not too great at the art of a delicate brush stroke. In other words, I lay it on thick.

My finished tree.

Finishing up our trees. Don't we look like real arteeests?

My finished tree and sloppy pallette.

Ta-da! I'm thinking that the red walls of our kitchen is a good home for this one, and already mentally finding spots for paintings from future events!

There were 87 people there all making the same beautiful creation.

Thank you Cindi. I had sooooo much fun!
I got to check out their calendar and do this again. And again and again.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Beach Day, Revisited

Yesterday the high temperature was something like 9 degrees and due to school delays, our stroller aerobics class was cancelled too. So we were snowed in...again. We all benefit from fun activities that beat the cabin fever. In other words....anything to keep us from going crazy sometimes!

So yesterday we had beach day! We did this last year too. Check out the link, don't they look so young? We also did Christmas in July when the oppressive heat was getting us down.

I cranked up the heat a bit, put the kids in their swim suits and broke out the baby pool as well as an assortment of hats and sunglasses. I also opened up their tents so that they could 'camp' in the living room.

Tessa kicked her feet back and 'sunbathed' for a while.

Later they watched a movie from the comfort of their pool. I was trying to find something summery or related to swimming but couldn't come up with anything. If only Disney didn't keep their films so tightly locked in the 'vault', we could have rented The Little Mermaid. We settled on a cartoon version of Swan Lake...springy right?

Nothing says warm summer day like hot dogs for lunch

Put a big tunnel atop the couch and voila!, a waterslide!

An exciting new addition to our house is a soda stream. The hope is that we can reduce cost and waste by making our own pop and seltzer. I'm the only one who drinks (diet) soda on a regular basis, but Jeremy also really likes seltzer.

The kids got to try a little orange pop too, which they enjoyed on our 'hot summer day'. I'm just hoping they realize it's for special occasions only.

At the end of the day the kids got to take a bath in their swim suits which Tessa was super excited about. I only heard about it though, as I was off enjoying "Mom's Night Out" with the ladies from stroller aerobics. Perfect ending to a perfect summer day.