Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Bus Stop Visitor

The girls and I saw this precious bunny while for the bus yesterday morning.  He (or she) was there again today and I had my camera with me to catch a picture.   We are hoping he will be there everyday to greet us.  What a great start to the day.  

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Roller Skating & Horsey Rides

We had a busy weekend but was still able to find some time to rest and relax.  Attended a birthday party for a friend's son, Nate at the local roller rink.  Neither of our girls have ever been roller skating and they both did excellent.  Caroline really took off, without any help.  Makenzie went through three pairs of skates and we finally found a pair that fit over her shoes.  Thank goodness.  We had a really good time and look forward to doing that again as a family. 

Today we headed to Brown Co. State Park and had a picnic and then the girls did some horse back riding.  Well, Caroline did anyway.  Makenzie just watched and talked about all the poop.  Go figure!

  Kenzie just wasn't getting the hang of it yet.

Caroline being silly.

Cupcake face

They always have fun with their daddy. 
They were chasing him around the roller rink.

Today at Brown County State Park

Me & my big girl!

Taking a rest after walking one of many trails.

We were all a little crabby and moody this weekend but we managed to spend
  time together as a family and make new memories. 

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Scooby Doo

That's one big sandwich for a dog.
Don't you think?

I made this Scooby Doo cake for Nate who just turned 7.

Happy Birthday Nate!!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Big Girl #2

Makenzie started preschool yesterday.  She had a wonderful day making new friends, getting to know her teachers and loving snack time (of course).  We had a little trouble getting ready in the morning.  For those of you who know Miss Makenzie well, she is kind of a "fashionista".   She loves to pick out her own clothes and shoes and it totally drives me CRAZY..   She is only 2 - how can she know what she wants to wear?    I gave her two choices the night before, she picked one that I liked, thank goodness, and then changed her mind in the morning.  Well, mommy wasn't having it.  It truly was a struggle to get her dressed. In the end, guess who won?  That's right, Mommy.   She looked so cute and she eventually got over not wearing her standard pink flimsy tank top and skirt.  Hopefully when the cooler weather arrives we won't have this problem.

Doesn't she look so cute?
I love that big smile.

On the way to school, it was pretty quiet in the car so I turned to Kenzie and I said...

"I love you baby".

"Don't call me baby.  I'm a big girl now".

Wow, I didn't expect that answer.  But she is right.  She is getting so big, so fast.  Before I know it, I will be putting her on the school bus for her first day of kindergarten. 

ps- she went pee pee in the potty twice yesterday!!  Yeah!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

From the mouths (and minds) of babes

Makenzie likes to "beauty shop" as she calls it.  This basically means play dress-up or play with finger nail polish, etc...  She has this favorite lip gloss and she recently lost it.  Well today, while doing some cleaning, we found it again.  Here is how our conversation went....

"Kenzie, guess what mommy found"?


"Your lip gloss".

"I can't believe you found my lick gloss.  I am so happy". 

Yes you read correctly, lick gloss

One other funny thing she is saying right now is ...placesnack instead of placemat. 

This is how my children's minds work.

Would love to see comments left as to what you all think this is. 

Monday, August 16, 2010

Growing Up

Today marked a big day for my oldest daughter,  Caroline.  She is officially a kindergartner.  I truly can't believe it.  I remember moms always telling me how fast the time goes when your children are infants and toddlers, and I didn't always believe them.  Boy, I do now.  I can remember bringing Caroline home from the hospital and placing her in her crib for the first time.  Rocking her all hours of the night because I didn't want to let go.  When she had her first big ear infection (included a trip to the ER), her first Halloween costume, first Christmas and birthday.  I remember alot of "firsts" and now I can add this one to the list. 

Caroline was such a big girl today.  She got out of bed with no problem, ate a great breakfast, we combed hair w/o a fight (thank goodness) and we walked to the bus stop for her very first bus ride.  Oh my.  The bus arrived and she got right on, only looking back for just a second.  As the bus pulled away, I could she her walking to the back trying to find a spot to sit.  Talk about breaking my heart.  All I could think about was... could she find someone to sit with?  Would she be scared?  Would someone say, "You can sit with me".  I headed to school as soon as the bus left (no I wasn't stalking it) to meet Caroline as she got off the bus at school.  I had promised I would walk her to her room on the first day and I kept my promise.  Of course I had a motive.  I wanted to make sure she was safe and okay.  And she was.  As for me, I was okay too.  Because she was okay.    Our children will always seem small and child like to us, even as they get older.  It's hard to remember how mature they are and that they can handle things we don't think they are old enough, or big enough for. 

Caroline had a fantastic day at school.  She is looking forward to returning tomorrow.  I just hope wake up time is just as easy. 

And to all my mommy friends who had this "first" today, great job moms.  We did it!!   :)

My tradition first day of school photo on the front porch.

Showing off her back pack. 
It is as big as she is.

With little sister, Kenzie.

Waiting for the school bus.
The highlight of her day.

There goes my girl.

Settling in at her spot.

Love this picture.
Caroline drew this at school today.
This is her waiting for the bus.
Too cute!!

Notice anything missing?
Caroline didn't have time to draw her mommy in.
Maybe next time...

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Minnie Mouse Cake

My first offical cake order.

This was a fun cake to create and make. 
I loved designing it and putting
my thoughts on paper & then on cake. 

Thursday, August 12, 2010

My Little Chefs

My friend Amy watched the girls for Roy and I one Tuesday while I was away in Chicago and they made this for me.

They made a huge cake out of paper, paints and markers.  And Caroline wrote that they missed me.  How cute is that?   I love their little chef hats and their mixing bowls. 

Thanks Amy for taking care of my girlies.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

American Girl Place - Chicago

After my graduation last Friday, my mom and I took the girls into Chicago to shop at the American Girl Place store.  All I can says is WOW!!!   We have been wanting to do this for a long time and finally with me being in Chicago for class, it all worked out.  When we made plans to do this, I asked my husband to make sure and pack Samantha (Caroline's Bitty Baby) and to make sure she was wearing clothes.  Well to my dismay, all  Samantha had on was a shirt and a diaper.  You can't take a Bitty Baby back to it's original home with just a shirt and diaper, can you?  Caroline didn't seem to mind so off we went. 

The store is so amazing. A little girls (or big girl like me) dream.  I could have easily spent the whole day looking around and could have easily spent a boat load of money in there too.  Both girls had a great time looking around and Kenzie just couldn't keep her hands off all of the displays.  I was afraid we would find a AG book hidden in Kenzie's diaper later. Ha!! 

I let Caroline pick out a new outfit for Samantha and Makenzie received her first AG doll.  She picked out a minature Julie.   She just loves her.  She sleeps with her and loves her long hair.  Mauw (my mama) let Caroline pick out a new t-shirt for both her and Samantha.   Caroline loves the fact that she and her bitty baby can match.  She has worn her new t-shirt at least three times since we have been home. 

I thought this was so cute!

Inside the store @ AG.

The girls in the Bitty Baby section of the store.
They are standing in front of the outfit Caroline
picked out for Samantha. A cute
bunny robe and pj set.

Me & my big girl.

Caroline with Mauw.

Love this picture.
Caroline with all her new AG stuff.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Days 9 & 10

Day #9 was spent decorating my final class project, a 3-tiered cake.  I arrived at school at 6:50am and did not complete my cake until 2:45pm.  I skipped lunch and I don't believe I even stopped to pee.  :)   I was on a mission and did not want to loose my momentum. 

The day went smoothly for the most part.  I started from the top tier and worked down.  The top tier was a brown basket weave and let me tell you, that brown took some time to color.  I used almost 6 oz of color (with red added in to make it darker), 1/2 an hour to mix, and a ton of arm muscle to stir all that icing. The end result was exactly what I wanted.  Thank goodness!  I don't think I could have stirred that anymore.  This was really what took a lot of my time, mixing the colors.  I had everything sketched out on paper so I had a game plan. 

The only problem I had was my last piece.  I had made a rope handle for my basket and as I was turning it over to brush the cornstarch off, it broke in two pieces.  I thought to myself if this is all that goes wrong today, then I can "handle" that.  I ended up throwing it in the trash and Debbie, my instructor couldn't believe how calm I was and that I threw a perfectly good piece of fondant away.  Oops.

I am really thrilled with how my final cake project came out.  It is totally what I invisioned in my head.  I love that when it happens. 

Day #10 started off with a trip to Wilton Headquarters to tour the decorating room and the test kitchen.  This was totally cool to see.  If you have ever seen a Witlon publication, this is where it all happens.  All the cakes, cookies, cupcakes, candies, brownies, etc... are decorated and photographed right here.  There were no pictures allowed because they are working on the 2012 yearbook already.  I felt like we were in a secret hiding place where we couldn't tell any secrets.  Ha!! 

After our tour we headed back to the classroom for a final demo on decorating with fondant.  Lorena, the school kitchen supervisor had made us a great breakfast as well.  She is a excellent baker.  She made something for us everyday during break time to eat.  Lorena made us coffee cake, sweet rolls, chocolate cake, apple turnovers, lemon cake, and many other goodies.  And the best thing was, they were always hot from the oven.  Yummy!!  I would go back to class just to eat Lorena's goodies.  :)  At 11:00am, graduation began.  The girls, my mom, and mother-in-law were there to support me.  I was so happy to have my family there. I only wish Roy could have been there too.

I will never forget this experience.  I learned so much from the insturctors and the other students.  And I made a lot of new friends from all over the world.  It's funny, I only learned of the course a few months back.  I mentioned it to Roy and he was totally with me and supportive of my decision to pursue this.  I owe alot to him and all of our friends and family who made it possible for me to go.  For those of you who watched & took care of my girls, I can't thank you enough.  To mom and Jeanie, I coudn't have done this without your support and love.  I know the girls had a great time with you both as well.  And to Roy, my biggest supporter yet, thank you, thank you, and thank you.  I totally see tons of cake in your future.  :)  So with that said.....

Ashlynn Leigh Cakes is officially open for business. 
That is so exciting to say.  :) 

7:00am start time

Completed my top tier in about an hour.
Brown basket weave.

Adding flowers

First two tiers are done.

Starting the picket fence on the bottom tier.
This took approx. an hour to complete.

Adding flowers to  my basket.

Final cake

Graduation Day!

Receiving my certificates for Gum Paste & Fondant
from Debbie.

Receiving my diploma for the Master's Course
from Sandy.

With my girls...


Saturday, August 7, 2010

Final Cake

Here it is....
My final cake.

We just arrived home and it's been a busy few days. 
I will post more photos tomorrow.

Love to you all.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Day #8

Today was another busy one.  I skipped lunch and worked a straight 11 1/2 hours preparing for my final project cake.  (3 hours of that time was spent in my final gum paste class)  I believe I am ready for tomorrow.  The flowers are done, my basket handle is made, and the ribbon is on.  I still have a TON to do tomorrow, but I confident I can get it done. I have a vision in my head.  I just hope I can made my vision come to life. 

Today we spent the morning doing a birthday cake.  This cake is decorated with alot of the techniques we have learned over the past week and a half.  It isn't your typical birthday cake.  It was a great refresher and a great way to see our work on an actual cake and not on a flat board.

Not sure if I will get to post tomorrow night or not.  I will do my best.  The girls, my mama, and mother-in-law will be here to attend my graduation.  I can't wait to see those girls.  I miss them so much. 

I want to send out a big shout out to all of my friends and family who helped Roy and I with the girls while I have been gone.  I (we) couldn't have done this without your help and your support.  I see a big thank you cake in your future.  :)  Also, a HUGE thanks to my wonderful husband who made this opportunity possible for me.   I don't know how to say it enough, I LOVE YOU Boy!!

Okay enough mushy stuff,  here are pictures from today.

Sweet Pea cascade on my birthday cake.

Top and side view of the birthday cake.

Braided fondant basket handle for the 3-tier cake.

My finished gum paste orchid.