Hello everyone! No, I have not fallen off the face of the planet, though it sure does seem that way sometimes... I get too busy with life and work and school and I can't even find a single second to bake, much less to blog about what I (do not) bake! But, it's now gloriousss and much-awaited spring break, meaning I finally get a second to breathe and catch up a little bit. Remember back in, oh, January, I posted about my trip to Italy, and told you I styled and catered a super duper birthday party for Mary Jo and promised I'd post all about it? Well, seriously, this is the first chance I've had to tell y'all about it! I am so pathetic. Or maybe just busy. Whatever. I'll let the pictures do the talking! :)
Okay, so here was the setup... white fireplace, and I put red and white polka-dot wrapping paper as a background for the mantle, with glittery turquoise tulle in front! I reused a Happy Birthday banner Mary Jo had made in the past, but changed out the ribbon so it would match... there are also strips of blue and red floral fabric at the ends of the banner that match with the little tablecloths. I grabbed the sequin candles on the mantle at Hobby Lobby on Christmas clearance, and I got the frames at the thrift store, then spray painted them red and dusted them with turquoise glitter. It was a quadruple birthday party, so I put a picture of each party girl in each frame! Mary Jo made the candy jars with thrift store candle holders and old glass jars! We will get to all the food in a second. :)
Here is more candy jar detail... to keep in with the theme, I filled them with Twizzlers, red-wrapped chocolates, milk chocolate Godiva chocolates (in the blue and gold), red Ring Pops, blue raspberry taffies, and Hot Tamales. I also put different ribbons on each to make them extra cute!
Here are the frames! I got them at the thrift store, so they were cheap, and easy to make. I basically just looked for frames with pretty molding and interesting shapes, cause you gotta keep in mind that once you spray-paint them, the shape is all that's gonna be left! So the initial color really doesn't matter.
Now time for food! I made safe to eat cookie dough dip, then mixed in white chocolate chips, and red and turquoise M&M's. Follow the link to see the recipe! I used the one for chocolate chip cookie dough dip. I served it with graham cracker sticks and cinnamon-sugar pita chips, and served it IN a beautiful bowl and plate that I got for a great price at TJ Maxx! I love that store. I then topped it with turquoise sparkly sprinkles.
I also made Strawberry-Balsamic Flatbread (from Joy The Baker) with goat cheese and mint. I actually completely forgot all about the balsamic vinegar like a total idiot, but I'm pleased to say it still came out delicious! I think I may have liked it better without goat cheese cause I'm not a big fan, but everyone else loved it.
These are chocolate-dipped Oreos... pretty self-explanatory! Oreos, red candy melts, and turquoise sprinkles. Easy peasy!
Twisty Pastry Straws, filled with raspberry jam! If you look at the original recipe, you will see mine definitely did not come out as dainty and perfect as theirs.... oh well! They were still delicious and flaky and total crowd-pleasers. Yum!
Another easy party snack I made were White-Chocolate Stuffed Raspberries. Sounds daunting, but honestly? It's just chocolate chips stuffed into the top of raspberries! They tasted so delicious though, a little sweet and a little tart. It's a good snack to keep in mind when your tummy starts yelling at you and you need something fast and still pretty healthy!
Now, Mary Jo made these delicious Jalapeno Bacon Crescents with Cream Cheese, (which were so good... like jalapeno poppers!), and she also made Cheesy Pepperoni Monkey Bread, which I somehow did not get a picture of... Oh my gosh though, that monkey bread was the most amazing thing I've ever eaten! I have made traditional monkey bread, but that pizza bread is the stuff dreams are made of. I definitely need to recreate it because it was so yummy! Everyone else thought so too, it was gone in the blink of an eye.
Anddd, last but certainly not least, the cake! I was making a cake for FOUR birthdays, so I knew it had to be four times as cool as a regular birthday cake! I had impressed even myself when I made the Belle Barbie Cake, but I knew I needed something totally different and unexpected. I tried my hand at making roses with frosting, which worked out okay... it would have worked a lot better if my no-fail foolproof icing decided to cooperate! Funny how things like that always happen when they shouldn't. Yes, it looks pretty, but what makes it the absolute awesomest, most kick-ass cake ever?!
It's FILLED WITH ICE CREAM! Yep. I made red-velvet cake, and filled it with bright blue birthday cake ice cream! I'm sorry, but I'm pretty sure that is the dang coolest cake I've ever seen! I was pretty proud of myself for coming up with an idea like that... and I was so happy I was able to fit the cake with the color scheme. Believe it or not, this wasn't even that bad to make. I used white box cake mix and added red food coloring, and baked it in a special dome pan (ha, like you actually thought I went and carved that out myself!), then once it was totally cooled, I filled it with ice cream, froze it solid, gave it a crumb-coat of frosting, and then piped the roses on with a big 1M tip. Still so mad that the frosting decided to not work with me. But live and learn!
I'm so happy Mary Jo asked me to do this party with her, it was so much fun, and so awesome to see everything work together! If you want, check out her little post about it on her blog for a few more pics. Thanks for looking! :)