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Christmas cupcakes

This year once more, I decided to give to all the teachers, edible gifts.

Having recently discovered “My cupcake toppers”, a company that does amazing paper rice and icing toppers, I went for a classic vanilla cupcake with a Christmassy Disney theme.

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In the past, I used different paper rice toppers but I’ve never been happy with the quality. They were either too difficult to peel off or the colour was not really bright.

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As you can see from these pictures these toppers are amazing, perfect in every detail and so easy to use!

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At Christmas, Beatrice loves watching “Mickey’s once upon a Christmas” so she picked a topper which reminded her of the movie.

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For Leonardo’s teachers we picked Winnie the pooh

disney-edible-paperEven if you are not a pro in making cupcakes, these toppers will make your simple vanilla cupcakes, looks so amazing! Just add a bit of frosting on top of each cupcake, peel the rice paper off and gently press one on each cupcake.

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I then boxed all cupcakes in single decorated boxes and close them with a simple red ribbon.

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All the teacher loved them!

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If you would like to give it a go, please check out the company which produces these lovely toppers. You will see that on their website they have a great choice of themes for many occasion and you will be amazed not only by the quality of the toppers and the care in packing them but by their professionalism in dealing with your order.

 

School’s out, treats are in!

Yesterday was Beatrice’s last day at school.

It was a very emotional day as she won’t be attending this school next year so there were many goodbyes to her lovely friends and teachers, lots of pictures taken to remember another milestone in her precious life.

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When I arrived, all classes were already out ready to say goodbye one to another and it was a magical atmosphere full of joy and laughter.

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Please notice my wrinkles are wrinkles of joy!!

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Nonna Marta looking rather overwhelmed…

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I spent this week preparing treats not only for the teachers but for the lollipop lady and for the lollipop man who kindly and patiently looked after the children day in day out during school terms. For them I baked some cookies with the lollipop sign.

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I sealed the bags with this lovely “home made” stickers I bought online.

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For the teachers I bakes some vanilla cookies, I covered them in black fondant so they looked like boards.  To make the chalks I melted some colorful chocolate candies and fill giant straw to give them the right shape.

It was so tricky to write the message on the board as the chalks kept melting in my hands (it’s chocolate duh!)

edible chalk

For her main teacher and head teacher I prepared some school’s out themed cupcakes with edible toppers which included pencils, rulers, little books and apples.

schools out vanilla cupcakes

edible toppers

board cookies

Boxed them in a lovely gift box

treats for teachers

edible mini books

edible cookie board and chalk

I found these cutie thank you teacher bags which were perfect to carry the cupcakes boxes.

thank you teacher

Mrs Callander has been a special, wonderful teacher to Beatrice and Beatrice will miss her a lot!


best teacher

Now the tricky bit is.. what am I going to do at home with this monkey for the next 6 weeks!??!

Bee’s 5th birthday – My Little Pony fun party

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It took me ages to go through the million pictures we took at Beatrice’s birthday party but I finally made it!

The 11th of April we threw a fun colourful party for Bee’s 5th birthday. I decided that being so fortunate to live in such a big house, it’d have been lovely to celebrate it here, having a big garden and many rooms where the children could play and have fun.

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We had 17 chidren coming so I knew I had to get organised and not only prepare delicious fun food but get together some games to play.

We decided the theme of the party ages ago. To be honest I was quite firm that it would have not been a Frozen party!! Bee was not too disappointed as she’s been into My Little pony for a while now so I only needed to enphasize that the party would have been very colourful with a rainbow cake and she was pretty excited.

First of all  I was desperate to find a tutorial to make a pinata.  On youtube I could only find complicated tutorials so I decided to make one out of cardboard boxes which was easy to make, perhaps a bit time consuming but overall the outcome was quite pretty! I filled it with different sweets, paper flowers and lollipops. I made it cloud shape as this is the cutie mark that the mini pony called Rainbow dash has got on his side.

 

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Then it was the food. I wanted everything to be colourful and fun. So not only a Rainbow cake was a must but cupcakes, jellies, fruits and home made meringues had to match the colours of the rainbow.

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To make the bottles of water go along with the theme, I added just a drop of edible colour in each bottle and they looked so pretty!

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I wasn’t sure how to decorate these vanilla cookies so at the last minute I put these mini pony plastic toppers on top and voila’

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Can you see that there is something missing on this cake? The reason behind it is that (obviously) when we went to place the Rainbow dash made out of fondant, it literally fell apart! 🙁

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Broken pony…

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So we took a few pictures of the cake with no ponies on it and then used plastic ones.

IMG_0572Here again my obsession with paper straws,  I decorated them with pretty happy birthday straw flags.

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If you remember in my previous post I was attempting to make meringues for the first time, here they are again. These little kisses meringue tasted delicious, were light, plus very pretty to look at.

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These were plain vanilla cupcakes topped with vanilla buttercream and rainbow toppers made out of edible coloured fondant.

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After making these rainbow skewers I decided that this is the solution to get kids to eat more fruit. All children wanted one and there was none left!

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I made these homemade lollipops using corn syrup and decorated them with sugar sprinkles. I think they look fun!

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These were chocolate pyramids which I made using a plastic mould

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I underestimated how long it’d take to make this cake. I took me almost a day between baking the different layers, fill it, making the rainbow on top and making the swiss meringue buttercream in 6 different colours to match the outside with every layer of the inside. And when it was ready and I showed it to my husband guess what his reaction was? “Oh, this one, I was expecting something different…” URGH!

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One of the activities I had planned for the day was decorating cupcakes. I had previously baked one cupcakes and one pony cookie for each child. Then I had prepared a fondant layer shaped like a pony that the children had to decorate with all the different colourful sprinkles I put on the table.

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For the cupcakes they had pieces of fondant (each one was a different colour) which they had to roll and make a rainbow to recreate the cupcakes I made for the dessert table.

I have to say the imagination these kids had to create their own pieces of art left me speechless!

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Each child had a My Little pony name tag  so at the end of the party they could recognize their own creations and take them home.

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Then it was the table were all the kids ate their food. I had covered the water bottles with lovely rainbow printables and all plates, and table covers along with the bunting, the gorgeous balloons for the rainbow arch and the other foil balloons were from Partyrama. Great to find the whole themed party decorations in one place!

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The night before the party I found myself making lots of rainbow jellies. I’ve never been a big fun of jelly as we don’t really give it to kids in Italy but after this party I was left with quite a few jellies so my mom and myself started to have one after lunch just to try it (yes I’m not kidding I never had one before!) one after dinner and now we love it too!

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On the big table we had a platter full of colourful vegetables, more fruits, panini, crisps and crackers. Then my husband prepared pizza for the kids and for the parents who were pleased to be offered a beer or two too 🙂

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I spent every evening of the week before the party creating paper tails made out of crepe paper, for the kids to stick on this poster and cut 34 pony ears out of felt so the kids could put them on their head with little clips I had prepared.

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One of the best moments was when daddy started making candy floss! All the kids lined up to get one and went crazy about it!

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Each child took home a piece of the rainbow cake but still we were left with lots of cake, didn’t realised I made such a big one!

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The chilly wind didn’t stop the children going outside and playing in the garden

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And that pinata just didn’t want to break. After a while I just asked the kids to jump on it! lol

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It was the end of the party and I had prepared some goodie bags to give to the children. Each bag was filled with a different My little pony soft toys and the kids faces when I started to throw the bags in the air for them to catch, was priceless!

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After waving goodbye to the children, we suddenly look up and realised that in the sky there was a real rainbow!

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 What a perfect day it was, full of fun, friends, cake and many memories to keep forever.

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Our celebration for Daddy’s 40th birthday

Although this picture looks like it was taken in 1973, it was actually from last Sunday when we celebrated Daddy’s 40th birthday!! As promised, I organised a surfing dessert table in memory of his surfing adventures.daddy's 40th birthday

 I took the Friday off from work and baked baked baked !!! There was a cake, nope actually two cakes, many cupcakes, cake pops and different cookies: sharks, surfers and surfing boards.

40th cake

 We had a very relaxing day. It was beautiful and sunny outside so while I was finishing the last touches for the table, daddy enjoyed the gorgeous weather and played outside with the kids. In the afternoon we had some friends coming over to make a toast (we had a huge bottle of Taittinger – oh yeah!) and plenty of sweets as you can see!

40th cupcakes

The day before, I organised a piccola surprise. I had two of his best friends flying over from Italy and they surprised him by pretending to be burglars and attempting to steal his beloved motorbike! Imagine his face! I actually made a video which is incredible funny and I might share it with you in the near future…

beach dessert table

cookies

dessert table

happy birthday daddy

You cannot imagine how difficult it was to stick those £$*@ waves on the cake! I spent hours and they kept breaking until my genius husband proposed to place them on a parchment paper and transfer them on the cake, brilliant! It saved my night!

surfing cake beach

shark cookie

shark cookies

surf cookies

surfing board cookies

On a Friday night I started making these beach ball cake pops. I was up until 1 am and at that point I have to admit, I actually started to enjoy making them and could have carried on all night (sick I know lol).

surfing cake pops

surfing cake

surfing sweet table

I had bought two giant balloons to decorate the table but didn’t want to include the full picture as one was bigger than the other.. explanation? They were so big that a full tank of helium wasn’t enough to fill both of them! #fail 🙁

surfing table

Daddy’s 40th birthday was an amazing one and we celebrated the way my husband wanted, low-key surrounded by good friends and good food!

Daddy blowing candles

“Tanti auguri a teeeee, tanti auguri a teeeeee, tanti auguri feliciiii, tanti auguri a teeeeeeee!!”

Buon compleanno Daddy!

 

Our haunted house Halloween party!

On Sunday we had our first Halloween celebration for Bee and her little friends.  Since we moved to our new house, she didn’t have much chance to see her friends so I thought it was a good idea to organise a small party and get baking!

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For the occasion I baked some vanilla cupcakes topped with chocolate swiss buttercream, chocolate cookies and a salted caramel chocolate fudge cake (which took me aaaages to make! Next time I’ll stick to a common chocolate cake lol).

For the drinks I used glass juice bottles and filled them with Bat’s blood cranberry juice. I got these bottles printables from the “Catch my party” website.

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I think these candy apples are the highlight of the table! I loved how they looked so intense and shiny. Very easy to make but I’d definitely recommend you to use a food thermometer as you MUST be sure to reach the perfect temperature to get that shiny look that sticks to the apple (the first batch i made I did not have one and after few hours all the glaze slipped on the plate- fail!). If you would like to give it a go you can find the recipe pinned on my Halloween Pinterest board.

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Deadly cupcakes

Marshmallow on a stick is ALWAYS  a good idea!

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I got the haunted cookie house idea from the Martha Stewart website. To be honest I wasn’t crazy about the first batch of chocolate dough I made for the house as I thought it was too hard and bitter so I used the one from Sweetopia and it turned out great!

Haunted house

How beautiful are these apples to look at?

poisoned candy apples

I ordered these cupcakes wrappers ages ago as I wanted to make sure to receive them on time to make this dessert table. ( I actually ordered too many of them so I will probably use the same for the next 5 years!)  I love them!

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I made the chocolate trees out of melted milk chocolate. I filled a piping bag and just followed the lines over a template I placed on a parchment paper sheet.

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I turned a simple Ikea orange candle into a deadly one.

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I found this poisoned apple printable on this blog and I thought it looked perfect framed next to my black shiny apples.

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Halloween cupcake

These are sweets I bought from the supermarket because I loved their bright orange colour.

Halloween sweet

 

Chocolate bat halloween cookie

Spider web

The idea was to fill the caulderon with candy floss (yes we own a candy floss machine!) Problem is once the children saw the machine they could not wait to eat the candy floss so we didn’t have the time to fill the caulderon hence I filled it with fake spider web.

Halloween web of spiders

These mini chocolate pumpkin cookies were filled with orange royal icing.

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If you know me  you know that I have a thing for Grappa. These bottles were originally filled with different flavours of grappa and because they have been empty for a while I thought they would look good as poison bottles. I just stuck a label and filled them with coloured water (all edible).

Poison bottles

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Chocolate halloween cookie

Another printable I got online. I just simply printed out and stuck it on a frame we had in the house.

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deadly poison

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The adults kids had a great time and enjoyed all the treats I prepared for them. I wish I could organise parties more often! I actually need to find an excuse to throw another one before Christmas comes…

  Happy Halloween everyone!