how sweet

My littlest niece turned one this past week and so her momma threw her a sweets party.

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{my mom always bakes the kids their own birthday cake for their birthday – isn’t this one cute?!}

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For favors, Hillary made cake pops {from this recipe} and the booklets {from here}.

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My contribution to the sweets table were the same filled cupcakes we had at the Summer Boutique that were such a hit.

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So I thought I’d show you how easy they are.

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To make the lemon-filled cupcakes, you’ll need:

a boxed cake mix, tub of frosting, box of instant lemon pudding, whipping cream and sprinkles.

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I found this pack of cupcake liners at Marshalls a while back and couldn’t resist. They were perfect for Hadley’s birthday party so I was glad I had them.

Okay, so first make the cake according to the box and bake in a mini cupcake pan. I used double liners {one fancy, the inside one white} so that the fancy one would stay dry during baking}.

The filling is a take on Lemon Mousse {only the completely cheating version}.  First, whip the whipping cream. I like to add a teaspoon of vanilla and a bit of powdered sugar to flavor.

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Next, mix the pudding mix and cold milk in a resealable container. Then shake. Or get your active boys to help. Shake for a few minutes until the pudding thickens.

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I have no idea what kind of chemicals they put in this pudding mix to make it thicken so quickly, but I’m just going to pretend like its healthy. Blissful ignorance.

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Now add about a cup or two of whipping cream into the pudding and fold together.

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Yum … creamy lemon pudding {aka Lemon Mousse}.

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To fill the cupcakes, use a pastry bag and round tip. Insert the tip into the center of the cupcake and squeeze the filling in until it begins to come out of the top.

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Then use a fancy tip and pipe on fake frosting from a tub. No one will be the wiser. Sprinkle with sanding sugar and you have some darling little cupcakes.

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So sweet.

P.S. Thanks for the nice comments about our family photos. We had a fun time and thankfully the kiddos enjoyed themselves long enough to get a few great images.  As you can tell, I have taken to skinny jeans {even though I never thought I would}. I’m a little afraid that I’m going to regret my outfit choice in 15 years when we look back at the photos, but I guess that is part of the fun. My sisters and I have had some good laughs at our old family photos – banana clips, Esprit, layered polo shirts with the collars popped, side ponytails with scrunchies, keds … oh man, I should dig up some of our old photos to share with you all. Anyway, ya’ll are sweet. Kinda like those cupcakes.

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our new family photos

We had family photos taken a few weeks ago. It was an unseasonably warm and gorgeous day {which after being rained out twice before, it was a welcome surprise!}. We worked with Estepworks Photography and could not be happier with the images.

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Baby girl isn’t walking on her own quite yet, but she loves holding hands and taking steps… and the boys and mommy & daddy happily oblige.

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We spent an hour or so walking around Bellevue Botanical Gardens and the boys were completely in their element exploring, throwing sticks in the water,  jumping off rocks, trampling rare plants. Sorry Bellevue Botanical Gardens for that.

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I’m so happy to have these images to remember this time in our family’s lives.

If you live in the Seattle area and are in need of a fabulous photographer, please feel free to contact Estepworks Photography.

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flouncy flowers {two tutorials & more}

flower-week

Well, today is the final day of flower week and I can say that I’ve loved it! I hope you have learned a few new things, have been inspired to create and maybe even finished a few of the projects. Like I said earlier this week, I could probably keep going for days and days with so many fun ways to create blossoms. I tried to narrow it down to five of my current favorites, but I just couldn’t. So today, there are two flowers.

Be sure to scroll all the way down for a few extra goodies at the end of the post.

The first flower today is a simple and modern one.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

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:: satin fabric

:: beads for embellishing {I used pearls from a broken pearl bracelet}

:: round template {mine is approximately 2 1/2 inches}

:: needle, thread & scissors

STEP ONE: cut four circles

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STEP TWO: stack circles and stitch through center

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STEP THREE: add beads to center to embellish

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STEP FOUR: snip into circle

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And you’re done!

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Pin a little bunch to a sweater for a fun accessory.

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Cute and simple, right?

Let’s move right into the next flower:

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Here’s what you’ll need:

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:: organza

:: a small piece of satin for the center

:: thread, needle & scissors

STEP ONE: cut organza into eight rectangles

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My rectangles are 2 x 1, but you could cut them any size you like

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STEP TWO: layer

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STEP THREE: stitch through the center of the layered pieces

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Just use a running stitch and go from end to end, gathering as you go

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STEP FOUR: wrap thread around center

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Tie off in back and snip thread and you’ll have this:

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STEP FIVE: add center embellishment

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cut small circle from satin {approximately 3/4”}

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fold into quarters and stitch through the bottom to secure

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then attach with a stitch through the center of the flouncy flower.

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So sweet. I attached two to a pair of shoes for a summery look:

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And there you have it. Flower Week 2011. Six great flower projects to get you in the spring and summer mood.

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As a special gift for mother’s day, I’ve created a free printable card for you to download and print.

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Just click the image below for the pdf, print on cardstock, cut along dotted lines and fold in half.

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I hope the mothers in your life enjoy it!

 

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