Posted in Baking, Camping, Children, Children's Parties, Chocolate, Family, Food, Ordinarylife, Parenting

Camping themed 5th party

Camping was not my theme of choice for this year, but Little Miss K wanted camping and I liked the theme so camping it was.  I initially wanted a Book Worm party.

Quite a few of my friends said I was insane to go with Camping…Maybe insane was not quite the word they used, but mad was mentioned more than once, as was tempting fate. Our family record with camping is not a good one. We have been camping 4 times since Kaylin was born and 4 times we have ended up either at the doctors or casualty or both.

I decided actual camping and a camping theme party were vastly different and went with it anyway.

Here are the photos.  (I am quite proud of how it turned out)

The Birthday Girl and Door Stop
The Birthday Girl and Door Stop

She was very excited that I made them both out of icing and that they were both on the cake….

The Party Table - Camping
The Party Table – Camping
Camp Kaylin - Camping themed Cake
Camp Kaylin – Camping themed Cake
Mix your own Trail Mix
Mix your own Trail Mix
The party pack Backpacks (each guest was given a little torch inside)
The party pack Backpacks

 

The backpack party packs, there was little torch inside each
The backpack party packs, there was little torch inside each

 

I made these little backpacks using a little paper bag and some ribbon.  It was actually much easier than I thought it was going to be.  Just make sure you find the paper bags with the flat base.

Campfire Flames aka NikNaks
Campfire Flames aka NikNaks

This is a disposable braai – but the grid was unnecessary as were the legs – so you could just use an aluminum roasting dish.

Wraps or Bedding Rolls
Wraps or Bedding Rolls

 

Bear Poop......
Bear Poop…… (chocolate, need I say more)

So this is what I did differently this year, than any of the other years.

Firstly – the biggest I did not have it at home.  Oh bliss – why did I ever do them at home before.

Secondly – I paid a little extra for the decor.  I looked through their themes, and then chose the closed to the theme I wanted. This is actually the venue’s fairy theme but I told them I did not want any fairy stuff just the woodland look.  I then made everything else to suit – red and green.

Thirdly – all the baked good are box mixes. I love making the little figures for the cakes, but dont actually like baking.  I find it stressful.  This was a lot easier.  Next time I might even just buy a pre-made cake and decorate it.

And then that is about it – once it is over you just pack up and go….

I have also realised that my daughter is nearly as bad as I am when it comes to planning birthdays in advance. She has already told me what themes she would like for the next 3.

Posted in Baby OL, Baking, Children, Children's Parties, Crafts, Family, Food, Ordinarylife, Parenting

Airlines and Teddy Bears – a 4th Birthday party

And just like that she was 4!

I know parents say this all the time but wow. Time really does fly.

When we first started discussing themes for her 4th party, Little OL was very into aeroplanes so I began the planning early.  Unfortunately she saw the photos of her 2nd birthday party (teddy bears picnic) and said she wanted teddy bears again.  As I had already organised some of the stuff (and really wanted to do aeroplanes) we compromised.  I put teddy bears in the aeroplanes…. It worked quite well.

So, the theme of her party was and Airline theme (with teddy bears as the pilots)  Here are a few photos

I created the invitation using a template  I found HERE.  I also made the cover, but forgot to take a photo of that.  I created the logo on Inkscape, using an image from HERE

Boarding Pass Invitation

I think just Goggled and checked Pinterest for the rest of the ideas. Here is the link to my Pinterest Board.

 

Baggage Claim
Baggage Claim

I really wanted those old fashioned brown cardboard school suitcases that we used to have and thought I might find some when the “back to school” stuff was out, but no joy.  In the end I found this little lunch boxes and fortunately in the colours I wanted so I bought them.  (Pick n Pay)

 

Cupcakes with marshmallow clouds
Cupcakes with marshmallow clouds

The cupcakes were a disaster, but thank fully with the icing and the best out of 5 batches I managed to get enough.

 

Cake with Teddy Pilot
Cake with Teddy Pilot

The cake went a lot better – I used my favourite cake recipe, the Rainbow cake from the Whisk Kid, but only used shades of pink this time (once again, I forgot to take a photo of the inside).

 

Aeroplane Cookies
Aeroplane Cookies

I also made teddy bear biscuits to go alongside the planes, but Little OL ate them before the party……

Delicious Aeroplane food....
Delicious Aeroplane food….

 

For the adults Mr OL made some awesome sandwiches.  We did Chicken or Beef , poor  Mr OL kept asking if he couldn’t do some salami or ham etc and I insisted it had to be Chicken or Beef…. LOL.  I did do a few vegetarians ones though.

I made a few different signs and added in a few extra elements, like globes, Captain’s hat etc and all in all I am very happy with how the party turned out but, there are a few things I have decided.  From now on we will not be having the party at home. As the kids get older they need more entertainment (and space) and I will also be outsourcing some stuff.  I will not be making cupcakes etc next year.  I probably won’t bake the cake either, although I might make the topper (I enjoy that part)

 

Posted in Baking, Cookies, Gardening, Ordinarylife

Cookies for Spring

I made cookies this weekend.

I found these gorgeous gardenging themed cookie cutters at Plastics Warehouse and have been dying to use them.  (I can’t resist cookie cutters – although I don’t actually like to eat biscuits……) Spring seemed like the perfect time, I just added a couple of flowers.

Spring Cookies
Spring Cookies

 

What do you think?

Posted in Baking, Cookies, Family, Feb Blog Challange, Food, Ordinarylife

FBC – Favourite Baking Recipe

Every summer we would go camping for the entire 6 week school holiday and for weeks before hand my mom would try and stock up on baked goods.  I believe she found this recipe in a Your Family magazine and it was my favourite.  In the end she took to hiding the biscuits from me because otherwise I would finish them before we even hit the camp site.  She has since passed the recipe on to me and I now make them quite often. They are really easy and yum!

My mom says the original recipe called them Melting Moments or something like that.  I don’t know why I have in my mind Angels Delights.  My mom has long since lost the original magazine page, but thankfully typed this out.  She called them Piped Biscuits in the copy she gave me. 

Piped Biscuits 

250 g Butter

80 ml icing sugar – sifted

375 ml Flour

125 ml Cornflour

Cream butter and icing sugar until soft and creamy.  Sift flour and cornflour and work into butter mixture. 

Spoon dough into piping-bag fitted with medium rose tube.  Pipe “S” shapes, circles and finger shapes onto a lightly greased baking sheet.  Bake at 180°C. 15 minutes.  Cool.

Makes about 18.

Optional extra (and well worth it) Dip ends of biscuits in 100 g melted chocolate, leave to dry.

 

My one tip is that they are much easier to pipe when the butter is a bit softer – as in it really must be room temperature.  Also, it is easier if you don’t over fill the piping bag. Rather put a smaller amount in it and refill.

I hope you enjoy.

Yummy Mummy – your custard biscuits remind me a lot of these except yours are even easier to make and Mr OL prefers your recipe… 🙂

 

Posted in Baby OL, Baking, Children, Cookies, Family, Feb Blog Challange, Food, Ordinarylife

Feb Blog Challange – Superpower

So today’s prompt for the February Blog Challenge is if you could have one superpower what would it be.

I think I would like to freeze time, not for ever, just for particular moments.  Like for those extra special times where you are lying cuddling with your child, between all the tantrums, melt downs and normal daily noise. For those wet kisses and “I love you”s that seem so rare.  For those date nights or shared bottles of wine with somebody special.  Those little moments that you just wish could last for ever.  Maybe even just the power to etch them into your memory, so that when all the normal chaos of life is going on you can take a deep breath and feed on those moments.

That would be my superpower if I could have one.  For now I just have to rely on my shaky memory and my camera.

Gorgeous Helping Hands
Gorgeous Helping Hands
Mommy, stop taking photos of my hands!
Mommy, stop taking photos of my hands!
Posted in Baking, Cookies, Ordinarylife

Latest iced cookie attempts

Lately a couple of my friends have been requesting cookies.  Normally I say no.  It is hard work, takes time and generally just ice cookies for fun but over the past month of so I have said yes (extra cash for Christmas……)

Here are some pictures of the ones I did for a Pamper Party.

Lingerie Cookies for a Pamper Party.
Lingerie Cookies for a Pamper Party.

 

White Lingerie Cookies
White Lingerie Cookies

 

Black Lingerie Cookies
Black Lingerie Cookies

 

Pink Lingerie Cookies
Pink Lingerie Cookies

 

 

 

Posted in 30 Days of Gratitude, Art, Baby OL, Children, Cookies, Family, Food, Ordinarylife, Port Elizabeth, Triathlon, weather

30 Days of Gratitude – Day 15 to Day 19

Day 15 – I am grateful for the ladies at my art classes I go to. I have been going for over 11 years and it is more about the social aspect that actually getting any painting done.

Day 16 – I am grateful that it is Friday!

Day 17 – I am grateful that I get to spend the day with Little OL.  She is getting cuter and cuter each day.

Day 18 – I am grateful to Mr OL for watching and entertaining Little OL so I could do a triathlon in the morning and finish decorating over 100 Christmas cookies that a friend ordered.

Christmas Tree Cookies iced and ready for wrapping.

Day 19 – I am grateful that it feels like summer is well and truly here!  I woke up this morning and it just had that summer feeling about it. When I was out in my car at lunch time the temperature said 30 degrees (which made me grateful for air-con). But I love summer!!!!!

Wrapped Christmas Tree Cookie

 

 

Posted in Baby OL, Baking, Chocolate, Cookies, Ordinarylife, Parenting

Cookies, cookies and more cookies

You would have thought that by getting unlimited wifi at home my blogging might have increased.  As you can probably tell, that did not happen.  I have realised that I don’t do internet at home.  When I am at home and Little OL is awake then I will spend the time playing with her.  If she is asleep then I like to do something a bit more creative.

My latest obsession – cookies!  I am going to blame Hayley for this.  After she posted her delicious condensed milk stamped cookies I realised I needed to try them out. And then I realised that I also needed one of those stamps.

Cookie Stamp

So, in the past couple of weeks I have made Hayley’s condensed milk cookies, a short bread biscuit (stamped), a white chocolate and macadamia nut cookie and a chopped nut and choc chip cookie.

Chopped nuts and choc chip cookies

I have also put back most of the weight that I lost!

Little OL has also discovered the joys of licking the spatula!  Hmmm cookie dough.

Finger Licking Good

Posted in Art, Baking, Cookies, Food, Ordinarylife, Paintings

Something new

So I decided to try something different with my iced sugar cookies – to paint them!  I have seen it around and thought I would give it a try.  We have our art class end of year party this weekend – our theme was Berthe Morisot.

I did not enjoy it and they did not come out the way I wanted. 

I believe that this is because of a few reasons, firstly I don’t usually paint with water colours and this would be done in that style.  Also this artist used oils so it was difficult to copy.  Secondly I found that the colour bled into the icing.

The other thing I think is that the taste of the food colouring would be too strong if you ate them (which I have not done yet).

I think I will stick to the more conventional way of decorating sugar cookies, line and flood with royal icing.  I really enjoy that. 

Here are pictures of the three I tried next to a copy of the painting I was trying to copy.  I think the one of the little girl with the red hair came out the best – the others are shocking! 

Painted iced cookie

 

Painted Iced Cookie

 

Painted Iced Cookie