Planes, Trains & Automobiles Fondant Images

For my son's (Elijah) first birthday party I am doing a Planes, Trains and Automobiles theme.  To get a head start on some of the things we'll have at the party, I pre-made the fondant images that will go on top of the cake. Here's a few pictures of the main parts (I'll show you the completed cake after the party)...
Everything is completely edible.  Click here for the recipe I used.  I also put on the back of the train a big 'E' for his name, '01' on the race car for his new age, and 829 on the plane for his birthday to make it all more focused on him.  


Christmas Layout

Here's my first Christmas layout for my boy's "First Year" Scrapbook. I was so excited to keep it holiday themed, but also added some fun in there since it is a kid scrapbook.  
The titles:
The journaling: (woo hoo I took the time to actually do it on the computer!)
Some details:
The pictures:
I did a couple of opening photo books to add more pictures to my page....I mean...who doesn't take a million pictures at Christmas?!  I am planning on doing a tutorial on this one soon so stay tuned:
This next flip book is a fold out, and is awesome for timelines--here we are making Christmas cookies and you see the cookies unfold as you unfold the pages!  So fun!  Check out my tutorial here.
So that's picking out a tree and our traditions we do at Christmas....now just Christmas day to do!!


Veggie Tales Birthday Party

For my son's 2nd Birthday Party we did a Veggie Tales theme.  Our invitation read: "Peas come and lettuce celebrate Nehemiah's 2nd Birthday. Turnip Time: ..."  There were red, green, and yellow balloons, tablecloths, and serving wear (which I put into a foil lined garden pot).  I also bought a bunch of vegetables, glued googly eyes onto them, and made them a centerpiece on the tables.  One table was lined with Veggie Tales gift bags I got from from www.bigidea.com.  I also found some little veggie pots that I put candy worms into them (are you getting the veggie/garden theme?).  We were at a park so the kids played in the sand and I brought a baby pool that we filled with water and a bunch of ducks and had a sign that said "King George's Duck Pond 'I love my ducks'" from King George and the Rubber Ducky Veggie Tales movie.  For food we had Veggie Fries with dip, carrots, ants on a log (celery with peanut butter and raisins), chips and tomato salsa, a chicken salad, a little Bob and Larry plate (baby tomatoes and cucumbers), deviled eggs with a piece of celery on top, and quesadillas made with tomato and spinach tortillas that come in red and green colors.  

For dessert I made a Bob and Larry!  Bob is a red velvet cupcake with cream cheese frosting dyed red.  His nose is a red skittle (S down), his stem is three mini green m&ms (m's down), his mouth is a dab of a black tubed decorators frosting, and his eyes are a dab of white frosting with two more black spots from the decorators frosting tube.  Larry is a Twinkie with the same cream cheese frosting dyed green, his nose is a green skittle (S down), and his eyes and mouth were made the same way as Bob.  We had one green and one red candle.
For games I made a large Bob and a bunch of red noses from construction paper/poster board.  We played "pin the nose on Bob" by putting a piece of tape on the back of the noses, spinning around the kids (blindfolded if older), and stuck the nose where you thought it should go.  After they stuck it on, I wrote their name on the nose so we could keep track of whose nose was whose.  I also made a "Giant Pickle" from Dave and the Giant Pickle Veggie Tales movie.  I copied his image from Google images, put it into a word document and then printed him onto two sheets of green paper and a sheet of white and purple paper.  I trimmed him out and glued the colored parts onto the green.  We pinned him to a tree and told the story of David and Goliath from the Bible and then threw red and green water balloons at him until he was "defeated" and fell off the pins holding him to the tree!!  Our last game was a potato race where the kids grabbed a potato (the ones from the table decorations that I had glued eyes onto) and kicked or pushed it across the finish line.  The kids loved that one!  Lastly I had all the kids gather in front of a giant Bob and Larry that I had made with a piece of red construction paper, two green and some white and black.  (It was really easy to make if you have a picture.)  They all sat on the ground and I took a photo of them, had it developed, and used the back of the picture to write a thank you note for coming and for any gifts.  
I made the goodie bag inserts to cut out some costs.  A Veggie Tales Door Hanger.  A Veggie Tales Coloring Book that said each kid's name at the top "Joel's Coloring Book" and "From Nehemiah's 2nd Birthday: July 22, 2010" at the bottom.  A Veggie Tales bookmark that says "God made you special."  I also put in a small pot, some soil, and some lettuce seeds (cucumbers weren't in season or I would have done that).  I folded the seed into a piece of paper and wrote "Grow your own lettuce" which was cheaper than buying a lot of packages.  I recommend folding the seeds up in the paper and taping it shut.  Then I threw a couple of pieces of candy in there.  So fun!!  I also made a document outlining some ideas for the party so that I didn't forget anything and could keep organized.

Red Velvet Cupcakes and Cream Cheese Frosting


  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 (1 ounce) bottle McCormick® Red Food Color
  • 2 teaspoons McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract

Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • Directions

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt in medium bowl. Set aside.
    2. Beat butter and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed 5 minutes or until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Mix in sour cream, milk, food color and vanilla. Gradually beat in flour mixture on low speed until just blended. Do not overbeat. Spoon batter into 30 paper-lined muffin cups, filling each cup 2/3 full.
    3. Bake 12 to 18 minutes or until toothpick inserted into cupcake comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire rack 5 minutes. Remove from pans; cool completely. Frost with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting.
    4. Cream Cheese Frosting: In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy. Mix in the vanilla, then gradually stir in the confectioners' sugar. Store in the refrigerator after use.

    Note: For the frosting, you almost want the cream cheese and butter to be melted so there are no lumps.  

    These came out super tasty! Hope you enjoy!


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