Cheers: French Macaroons

IMG_5420I realize I’ve recently blogged a recipe and another one might be a little over kill but I am beyond excited about these little babies that we made for my daughter’s birthday party.  I will post the whole party soon AND share my experience making the Petits Fours I talked about here.  They didn’t go as smooth as the recipe makes you believe, but I’ll explain later.

Today, I bring you…Basic French Macaroons.IMG_5429

I threw Zeda a little afternoon tea party with her closest girl friends.  In attendance were 8 sweet little 3-4 year olds and I realized they couldn’t come to tea without Macaroons.

I knew Macaroons could be tricky and I didn’t really have the time (or patience) to make the recipe over and over until it was right so I searched for a simple, well directed recipe and found this one on POPSUGAR Food.  Then I handed over the iPad and sent my hubby to the kitchen.  You see, my husband is a science guy and he follows directions to a T, never skipping steps or guessing amounts.  Since he actually likes to cook and he’d do anything for his little girl, he happily obliged.

Guess what?  They turned out fantastic!  The girls were happy, the mamas were happy and Jarrod was proud of his work.

Perfect.

Here is what you need:

2/3 cup almond meal or ground almonds
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3 large egg whites at room temperature and preferably aged up to 3 days
5 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Click here to see the whole recipe and directions.

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Cheers: Petits Fours

This weekend is big.  My sweet Zeda girl turns 4 and we have a few parties lined up.  First, a little Tea Party tomorrow afternoon with her favorite little girl friends.  I’m working hard today getting everything baked and organized and these little beauties are on the list!

They seem so easy and look so pretty; I’ll let you know how they turn out.

From Amy Atlas in Country Living:

“People will swear these are from a fancy bakery,” says Atlas of this tempting shortcut. To follow her lead: Use a serrated knife to cut the crust off a pound cake, then slice the cake into one-inch squares. Place them on a cooling rack with parchment paper underneath, pour icing over the squares, and let set for an hour. Atlas’s 60-second icing recipe? Mix four tablespoons of water to two cups of sifted confectioner’s sugar. Tint the mixture by stirring in a bit of gel food-coloring.

I’m off to start these Petits Fours!

Stay tuned, I’ll be writing much more about her birthday in the next couple of weeks.

 

Party: Ava’s Pinkalicious Party

edits182My sweet sweet niece, Ava, is turning 3 and this little spitfire is a total Princess.  What better way to celebrate her than a PINKALICIOUS party!

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For those of you who haven’t heard, there is a book series called Pinkalicious and if you haven’t guessed it; Pinkalicious loves PINK.  Here is a quick summery from Pinkalicious:

Pink, pink, pink! More than anything, Pinkalicious loves pink, especially pink cupcakes. Her parents warn her not to eat too many of them, but when Pinkalicious does . . . she turns pink! When the pink does not wash off, she is told by her doctor to eat only green food to get better. Instead, she eats just one more pink cupcake! Pinkalicious has gone too far this time and in order to return to normal, she knows just what she has to do.

This sparkling picture book celebrates all things pink while showing that being yourself is best of all.

It is such a cute book and makes for a great party theme.  Our little Ava doesn’t need to be pink to be beautiful…she already is and so was her special day!

IMG_5311edits185IMG_5309edits183The Menu:

Strawberries n’ CreamTaffy
Grapefruit Sours
Strawberry wafers
Pinkalicious Rocks
Strawberry Gummies
Pinkalicious Jelly Bellies
Raspberry M&Ms
Raspberry Meltaways
Chocolate Covered Pretzels
Dipped Strawberries
White Chocolate Filled Raspberries
Pink Lemonade Fudge
Pink Lemonade Spritzer
Pinkalicious Cookies
Pink Marshmellows
Cream Cheese Mints

Pinkalicious Cupcakes : The Hot Chocolate

 

Birthday: Ezra, The First Year

Ezra, 1 Year {MWP}-4I cannot believe my little guy is 1.  He surprisingly came into this world early the morning of our  Accenture event last year.  Of course an event planner’s baby would do such a thing, right?  We celebrated our sweet babe with our closest friends and family by displaying picture of his first year and a showing all his “firsts”.  It’s been a crazy year but we are the luckiest people in the world to be the parents of our big E boy.

Happy Birthday Buddy.

First Birthday Party2Ezra, 1 Year {MWP}-13First Birthday Party5Ezra, 1 Year {MWP}-18 Ezra, 1 Year {MWP}-20Ezra, 1 Year {MWP}-2First Birthday PartyEzra, 1 Year {MWP}-1First Birthday Party1Ezra, 1 Year {MWP}-56

Photos by Meg White Photography

Cake by Belinda Wingo

Cheers! Lemon Cake Pops

IMG_4374More cake pops?  I know, right?  They are everywhere.  But, hear me out.  Even though most parties have them, they really are a perfect addition.  They are easy to grab, practically mess free and makes a beautiful centerpiece.  What’s not to like?  Oh wait!  I forgot the best part…THEY ARE YUMMY!
edits176These Lemon cake pops would be so cute for a bumble bee birthday party.  The yellow cake, yellow sprinkles and chocolate coating, it’s a perfect combination for any Queen Bee.

Lemon Cake Pops (Recipe found here)

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon extract

Directions:

  1. Melt butter and set aside to cool briefly.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer at medium high speed, beat together sugar, eggs, lemon zest, and lemon juice 1 minute. Add melted butter and beat 2 minutes at medium-high speed.
  4. Beat in vanilla and lemon extract. Add flour mixture and beat just until blended.
  5. Fill each well (if you have a cake pop maker or doughnut hole maker) with about 1 tablespoon batter and cook 4 to 5 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  Cool and glaze or coat, as desired.

Makes approximately 2 1/2 dozen

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A Mustache Surprise

1 Our hearts always melt when we get a call from a guy that wants to surprise his wife with a birthday party. This one was no exception…however, it was a little trickier than normal. Our client’s wife, Morgan, was in charge of the venue where her party was held; the Dewey Visitor Center in Branson, MO! We put on our best game faces and pretended to be planning an engagement party. We did site visits, phone calls, emails and set up the entire party before Morgan’s very eyes. It was definitely the hardest surprise to pull off yet, but we think it went wonderfully. Morgan was shocked. Mission accomplished!

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Her sweet hubby decided on a theme of “disguise” and we went to work. Famous Dave’s catered, we featured chocolate mustache lollipops, champagne and an array of mustache props from The Manic Moose etsy shop. They ate, danced and played birthday trivia. It was a great night. 5 6 8