Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thursday Inspiration: Thanksgiving Kids Table Fun

Being a mom and children's party planner allows me to live vicariously though wee ones.  I was searching online for some ideas to fun-up the kids table for Thing 1 and Thing 2 and here are a few that I thought these ideas were just top drawer!

I think my favorite ideas are the paper craft decorations from Fiskars!  I love paper crafts anyway but I am sooo digging the paper bag drumstick.  I think filling it with a mix of popcorn and Indian Candy Corn would be a hit.  It would also make a great party favor.

I'm still not sure what I'll do for the kids table but I'll be sure to share the final outcome with you.

B. Fiskars Paper Crafts 
E. Turkey Treats

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake

I made a pumpkin cheesecake over the weekend that was DA BOMB!!!!!  (Do people still say da bomb.....???) 

The recipe I used called for a lot of lovely spices (ground clove, cinnamon, all spice & ground ginger); I'm sure, you could easily substitute all that for Pumpkin Pie spice and get away with it.  The great thing about this cheesecake was that it had a very fluffy texture and not as dense as most cheesecakes. I believe, the key to getting a really fluffy cheescake was to press the water out of the pumpkin filling (canned) and use five eggs as opposed to four.

Here's how my cheesecake bakin' went!

I started out with Graham crackers....

 Put them in a food processor....

Ground them up.....

Added a couple tablespoons of buttah....

Stirred in Sugar n' Spice.....

Put the spiced buttery crumbs into a springform pan and patted them down in an even layer.  I baked the crumbs in the oven at 325 degrees for about 10-12 minutes - allowed it to cool down for 10 minutes when it was done.....

Mixed up my pressed out pumpkin filling with cream cheese, spices, sugar and eggs....

Poured the mixture into the springform pan and smoothed out the top of the filling.  I baked it in the oven at 325 degrees in a water bath for a little over an hour.  Because my oven is possesed it took less time than what the recipe recommended (1 1/2 hours).  Then I let it cool down in the pan for 45 minutes and put it in the fridge to chill for about 3 hours before serving....

Take it out put it on a fancy festive plate and if you're feeling brave add a toasted marshmallow to your slice....

I know - you're dying to make one yourself!

Here's the video on how to make it!

Bon Appetit!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Casual Thanksgiving Menus

I'm in the process of getting prepped for Thanksgiving dinner by planning out my menu (and cleaning out my fridge and pantry).  This year, I really want a very low-key and quiet Thanksgiving with my husband and kids....I'm holding my breath on that one.

In any case, I like to cook one new dish every year by thinking of different ways to cook the same traditional dishes I make.  For instance, a Mandarin Orange Glazed Turkey with Jasmine Rice and Curried Carrots would be very interesting for an Asian infused Thanksgiving - right?  On the down side of things, my husband would never have any of that, so I'm still stuck with a good ol' Mayflower meal!  However, that doesn't stop me from sharing with you some inspiration.

Here are three casual printable Thanksgiving  Menus that might offer up some ideas for you.  Just cut them out and place atop each place setting.  Recipes for most of the dishes can be found anywhere online.....however, the Coco Bread Stuffing is one that is all in my head!

Download the Traditional Menu Here
Download the Southern Menu Here
Download the Caribbean Menu Here

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

GIVE THANKS - Modern Fall holiday Printables

I'm excited to share with you a little ditty I created yesterday!

Here it is 3:42 in the AM and I just posted a new party pack in my Etsy shop for this Thanksgiving Holiday!  (I Know....insane.....)

I am soooo sleepy and on my last leg but I really wanted to get this out.

I just wanted to show my thanks and give a free customization of this pack to my readers who purchase the pack by 12 Midnight Wednesday, November 10th.  Please add the code 'Cupcakes' in the Notes to Seller section upon payment.

More fun Turkey day stuff to come later in the week!!!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Friday Finds: Fall Tabletop Dress Up

I love these botanical inspired finds from Crate & Barrel.  They add a charming element of bringing a little bit of the outdoors in.

Place these items alongside table linens set in fall hues of orange, green or plum and you can take your fall tablescapes to new heights!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

A Little Catching Up to Do

There have been several events that have taken place over the last two months that I just didn't get a chance to share with you!  How dare I!

I must tell you that starting your business and trying to design, plan, conceptualize, visualize and sometimes improvise (and not necessarily in that order) takes you away from other tasks - like my blog writing.  I love writing in my blog and sharing with you guys and sometimes, I just don't get around to everything (like adding more pages for party submissions, party consulting services and pricing that link to my Etsy

So, I thought it would be nice to share with you some of the events that I either helped plan, design or baked cupcakes for.....almost forgot that's part of my schtick, huh? LOL  So here-goes!  These are recaps from Halloween, a charity event for a local Washington, DC arts organization and a baby shower.

Over the weekend we had a lil sumthin' sumthin' for the kids for Halloween....... 

What a motley crew!

I shared with you the Halloween 2010 Party Printables I made for the party and the blog party I participated in showcasing the printed products.  Well, all those print outs couldn't go to waste, so I used them for the kids' party.  I took a lot of pictures, but unfortunately, the lighting is horrible in our basement and I also had the camera on the wrong setting the entire time and they came out pretty sucky. Here's a collage from the best I got from the bunch:

We had loads of candy on hand!  I decorated the ceiling light fixture with streamers and rosettes and covered the bookcases with painted runners.  To add some height and dimension to a spooky display, I covered our DVD and DVR with black sheets which created a cool visual point of interest.

Another idea I came up with (at the last minute) was to create little Spooky Stations.  So, I created specimen jars - which grossed a lot of people out.  There was also a Witch's Kitchen where the kids could go and add ingredients to make an evil potion of witches brew.  For another activity, and I didn't get pictures of it but wish I really did - we made green slime!  It was a lot of fun, in fact, my daughter still has hers.

About a month ago, I assisted in designing a baby shower for a coworker, I also created a cake for the event.  The theme was 'B is for Boy' and I chose to use browns, blues and creams for the colors.

About two weeks ago, I donated some of my delicious baked sweets to an event to help raise money for a local Washington DC arts education program.  The event was focused on health, fitness and wellness and I was asked to make something healthy - healthy cupcakes????? WHAT THE????  But I did it!  I found a recipe for chocolate vegan cupcakes and added my own spin on it and this is what I came up with:

These are Chocolate Coconut Vegan Cupcakes with the BEST chocolate 'buttercream' frosting you'd ever want to taste!!!!  They're healthy because they are only 115 calories - they are tiny mini cute!

I had a lot of fun working on all these events, but it's time to get back to getting things together for Thanksgiving and Xmas - OY Vey!!!!  Check back soon for my holiday party planning tips.

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