Monday, December 15, 2008

Tis the season!

...for pretty presents, and snowflakes and choirs of angels!

I was commissioned to make this cake for a co-worker in my husbands office, for the Bethlehem Lutheran Church, in Encinitas.  They had their holiday choir performance last night and he thought the cake would make a nice reception display and of course treats for after the celebration!  I had fun making these cute little angels (all edible and made from fondant)!  
Thanks Dale!  I hope everyone enjoyed it!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

How 'bout a beer?!

I made this cake was made for a friend of ours, who was celebrating his birthday this weekend - with beer and brat's!   This "beer mug" cake was made from 4 - 6" round cakes, torted and filled with vanilla buttercream and starwberry preserves.  Then covered in fondant and airbrushed for color.  The foam on top, was simply buttercream.  The idea came from a cake I found on  the "Cake Girls" website ( - I think it came out pretty good!  The sausage was made rice cereal treats and  covered in fondant.  Pretzels were made out of fondant, and sugar crystals were used for salt.   Fun cake to do! 
Cheers Michael!!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Coffin Cake

Here's another Halloween inspired cake I did this week, for our neighbor Michael.   We met Michael and Christine who moved onto our street just shortly after we did (yeah!)   In fact, the first night we met, he told us we "had" to mark our calendar for the weekend of the 25th, for his Halloween/Birthday party!  Don't have to tell me twice!   We'll be there!
This was a sheet cake carved into a coffin, covered in a mixture of chocolate and black fondant.   I made the top a day early so it would dry...  I wanted to have it slightly moved over, so there would be room for the skelton hand coming out!  (Hand was made out of gumpaste).  All the rest of the decorations were all made out of fondant and cookie crumbs for dirt. 
 Everything edible!

Had a great time at the party - bunch of wild and crazy people!   The kind of neighbors we love!
Happy Birthday Michael!!

Sunday, October 12, 2008


I know the pictures in my website are messed up - I'm having difficulties trying to edit my pictures, and am working on it!
- stay tuned!

Happy Fall!

I love the recent change in weather, the cooler breezes, the changing colors in the leaves, watchin' football, pumpkins on the porch....  love it!  My most favorite holiday!  ...OK maybe a close second to Christmas!  I love Halloween.  Love the decorations.  Love the costumes.  Totally fun excuse to have a party!  (I'm big time missing our annual costume party - but since we've moved, it just won't be the same!)  We do have another party to go to, which I know will be awesome, I just need to figure out what I'm doing for a costume this year...  I've done spider woman, a witch, a biker chic, "Malice" in Wonderland (my favorite!) and toga'd out with last years theme!  Suggestions?

...and speaking of parties,  our neighbor Maddie was celebrating her birthday day this weekend, w/ a costume Halloween themed birthday party!  I wish my birthday was around Halloween!  I haven't done a cake in months and was itchin' to do one - and it's a Halloween cake!  

(Inspired by Rebecca Sutterby,

Thursday, October 2, 2008

And the winner is....

Rebecca Sutterby!

Rebecca won the grand prize this past weekend at OSSAS!   A HUGE congratulations goes out to her - I'm so proud of her!!  She usually places in and around the tip top, but has never won the grand prize.  Here's a photo of her winning cake!  
Simply gorgeous!

Rebecca is my idol!  (OK, I don't mean to sound creepy! - but she is!)  When I first started out in cake decorating, and surfing the internet for inspiration - I found "Sugar Creations" ( and instantly fell in love with her cakes.  Her style fits me to a "T"!  I would study her cakes and designs and try and incorporate these techniques and beautiful colors, into my work.  I first met Rebecca at OSSAS a few years ago, and was just SO thrilled to shake her hand and tell her how much I admired her work.  I was fortunate enough to take a class with her - in Kansas, back in 2007 (w/ my friend and follow decorator - Lisa!)   Rebecca's work has earned her much recognition in the past years, she's been on FoodTV's "Challenge" and she's was featured in "Bride" magazine back in February, as one of the "50 Most Beautiful Cakes".  She is not only an extremely talented decorator, but she is the sweetest and most down to earth person!   Winning OSSAS couldn't have happened to a better person!   

I can say...  "I knew her when..." !!

...and congratulations to you Shelly on your "silver" win!  
Can't wait to see a picture!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

It's Almost Here!

The Oklahoma State Sugar Arts Show!    

It's this weekend!

If you in in or around the Tulsa, OK area and are a cake enthusiast, a cake decorator, a bride or just a "foodie" in general - you must go the the OSSAS this weekend!  It is the largest cake competition in the county and contestants come from all over and around the world!   There are a multitude of categories for every level of cake decorator from kids to masters... and then there's the "wedding cake" competition.  This brings out the best of the best!  Each year there is a theme for the wedding cake competition...  this year is "Language of Flowers".   Personally, for me - a tough category!  Last year was "Hollywood Glamour" - that's right up my ally!   Cakes are judged on interpretation of theme, representation, technical difficulty, table decor, pretty much picked over with a fine tooth comb!!  

Here's my piece from last years wedding cake competition - it was titled "Bell of the Ball".  It was inspired by the dress Audrey Hepburn wore in the movie "My Fair Lady".   I won a bronze!

"Bell of the Ball"  Bronze winner OSSAS 2007

My cake though hard to tell in the photo, was entirely covered in lace (as was Audrey's dress). This took hours (days) to achieve!  The top or dome, I thought would be representational of the umbrella she carried.  These pieces were all hand cut and overpiped to give it the texture and impression of lace.  Little sugar pearls gave it a little bling.   I wanted the cake to look like a "dress", so I gave it a waistline with the concave cake at the top (these are dummies by the way, not real cake), and the bottom of the cake was flared out (as was her dress), with detail added to match the lace pattern on her dress.  The black and white ribbon and bows, and pink roses were all hand done and made out of gumpaste.  I still have the cake - it's in my garage!  I unfotunately had to toss a lot of my cake dummies before the move, but I didn't have the heart to toss this one!   We rode with it in our car from Texas to California!   

I have my personal favorites to place this year - and I cannot wait to see the entries and the results from the competitions!   I unfortunately can't make it this year - due to the move and timing, it just wasn't going to happen...  Which I am sad about...   But will not dwell on!

There's always next year!!

Good luck to all who've entered!!

Sunday, September 21, 2008


I took Jake and his friend Cade to Legoland one afternoon a couple weeks ago...  Legoland is located in Carlsbad, CA (the only one in the United States), and about 20 minutes from where we live.  Both my boys were/are HUGE Lego fans, we must have hundreds of dollars invested in Lego's and Bionicles!   Matt's felt he was a little to big to be going to Legoland!  - but Jake and Cade loved it!  They have some rides (perfect for smaller kids - I think Jake was a little disappointed - he's used to 6 Flags type rides) but was so excited about the Lego creations which are displayed all around the park - Lego EVERYTHING!  

Lego people....

Lego animals...

Lego faces...
Lego cities...

So, if you have kids who are into Lego's, and in the San Diego area, a visit to Legoland is a must!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Is summer over already?!

I'm sorry for those of you keeping tabs on me... I've been a bad blogger!   

I'm sorry! 

We have all been enjoying the summer here in sunny San Diego!

No for real...   we've been busy...  Unfortunately Mark's mom passed away a few short weeks ago.  She hadn't been well for quite some time and though Mark had recently been able to visit her, it was tough when the time came.  We all went to Syracuse for the funeral... 
We've also had two rounds of company the past few weeks, still working on finishing up the house, getting Jake ready for school - I've been busy!  I've missed my blog and posting pictures - so I'll try and catch up with the latest greatest (I'll try and spread 'em out over the next few days - so check back!) 

Jake's first day at San Elijo Elementary - isn't he cute! (My Birds of Paradise bloomed finally!)

Matt recently got a new job at Guitar Center - which is right up his alley! He's taking the year off, as won't qualify for "in state" tuition till next fall (forget about out of state tuition!) - So that give him a year to save some money, and check out the Cal State schools.  

We spent several days in Syracuse for the funeral - and though a sad and emotional trip, it was great seeing Mark's family again... We laughed, we cried, we drank margarita's!
The whole family hadn't been together in years, and it was fun to catch up with everyone and see all the nieces and nephews.

I know Marcia was smiling down!

Papa takes on the kids in a game of bocce ball.

Sean, Matt and Jake jammin' out on "Rock Band" (we are so getting this for Christmas, it's so much fun!)

Mark and his brother Jim

Mark's sister Cindy and daughter Kate.

Jim's daughters, Patrice and Jessica

John, Sean, Kate, Matt and Patrice

"The most important things in life are your friends, family, health, good humor and a positive attitude towards life. If you have these then you have everything." Author Unknown


Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Our new family member!

Welcome baby... " ? " !! We just "adopted" this little guy! He's a 12 week old Congo African Gray parrot. Not sure what to name this lil' one yet - not sure if it's a boy or a girl! We're off to the bird vet today for a check up and blood test (only way to officially "sex" bird"). So far on the short list is: Uno, Oakley, Echo, and Mojo. Those are our "generic" names. I like Lola if it's a girl, and Cisco if it's a boy! He's so cute, and we're having so much fun with him - very sweet bird! Here's a picture of Jake and "bird" (he LOVES edamame!)

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

A love story...

This is the most touching and beautiful love story ever!

I've watched it three times already, and cried every time!   Amazing.


"Did you feel that?!?!"   My husband called to ask me at 11:45.  

"Feel what?" 

"We just had an earthquake!!!"  

Welcome to California!  If you hadn't heard the news yet, California had an earthquake, it registered a 5.4 on the richter scale, centered in Chino Hills (about 30 miles east of downtown LA).  Apparently it was felt as far away as Las Vegas, and and far south as San Diego...   

I however, felt nothing!

Kind of glad...  but in a strange way...  kind of wanted too!  Mark called me from work, which is in Del Mar (close to the coast), and he said his office definitely rumbled!   Fortunately there were no reported injuries and no major damage.   5.4 is pretty big!   

It's definitely scary...  but I'm not afraid.   We dodged tornadoes (some too close for comfort!) in Texas and have seen first hand the damage they can cause.   California has earthquakes.   I don't think anyone - anywhere is safe from a natural disaster...   I'm fascinated by the sheer power and magnitude of these natural forces...  it makes me realize how small we are on this large planet on which we live.   A little shakin', I'm OK with...  As for "the big one" - hopefully I won't be around when that time comes!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Yup... It's a kitchen... and it's cake!!

My "kitchen cake" was published in ACD (American Cake Decorating magazine) this month!   This cake has undoubtedly been my most interesting cake request to date!  I love a challenge and when clients have a "vision" - I love it more when the finished product exceeds their expectations!

I did this cake for a guy who was surprising his wife with a kitchen remodel for her birthday... nice guy hu!?!  He wanted a complete replica of his current kitchen to present his wife, so she could demolish it!  (kind of harsh, but I get it!)   He was an engineer, so he was very specific how he wanted it to look - right down to the coloring on the kitchen counters (no pressure)!   He made the "stage" for the cake complete to scale...   complete with walls, and even made little ledges for me, to put the cake on where the cabinets were to hang and actual flooring from their kitchen, for the cake board.   It doesn't look like much cake, but all this was constructed out of 2 2x18 half sheet pans...  and not all of it was cake, I used styrofoam for some of the cabinets and refrigerator.  Everything was covered in fondant and all the details were made out of gumpaste and applied w/ royal icing.  

Well, he was blown away with the results and even sent me pictures of his wife demolishing the "kitchen cake"!   I don't think this kitchen looked all that bad - would love to see what the new kitchen is gonna look like!  

(Wonder what he's got planned for next year!?!)

Friday, July 11, 2008

Good cakes gone bad!

As you may think, I am not on vacation! ...OK, well sort of, but not really! Though it is "summer", and I have been hangin' at the beach, and haven't done a cake in 8 weeks! ... I've also been unpacking, organizing, and setting up our house! I don't how many trips to Lowe's and Home Depot I've made, but the girl at the paint counter recognized me this morning!
I still frequet my favorite cake sites and friends blogs, and while perusing on Cake Central ( last night, I came across the funniest blog and had to pass this on! It's a riot!
"When professional cakes go horribly, hilariously wrong!"
These are some of the saddest (and funniest) cakes I have ever seen! Spelling errors, horrible colors -you'd cry too if you picked up one of these babies for your special occassion (or wedding!) No cheap shots - these aren't "beginner" cakes or cakes your grandma made, these are what people actually paid for - from a bakery!
Just proves.... you get what you pay for!
(Good cakes aren't cheap - and cheap cakes aren't good!)
...or anything for that matter!