Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Birthday Wishes

A friend of mine (whose birthday is today), asked if I was going to post any of my cakes.  The answer to that is a definite "YES"!
You see, I was a proud member of "I can burn water" club for years.  Man, could I tell you stories!  After a few kid's birthday parties had come and I was stuck buying some generic cake for each one, I figured - I could do that!
For my first one, I just made a boxed sheet cake, iced plain and added my own decoration.
In early 2004, my first efforts were a little sad.  I guess that I should have read some sort of instructions.  It didn't turn out quite like I planned.  I wanted it to look like the scavenger hunt that the kids did for the pirate party.  My treasure chest looked like a brown blob. 
Fast forward 7 years and I have learned a lot and I have a lot TO learn.  I have made a bunch of cakes and found that I prefer 3-D cakes.  One thing that I have learned was to find inspiration somewhere.  A great place to find cake ideas is Cake Central.  All sorts of people, of all skill levels, post pictures of their cakes, which can be searched.  I usually start with an idea or theme and search by that.  There are so many cakes on there that you have to narrow it by something.
When I offered to make a cake for my friend's son's combined birthday party last November, I knew that the party would revolve around animals since their family loves animals of all kinds.
After vaguely searching the hundreds (if not thousands) of animal cakes, I realized what I wanted to make - a bathtub full of animals.  It just seemed so like her boys to decide to wash all these animals.  I narrowed my search.  I found some bathtub cakes that I like by searching for "tub".  I liked ones like this and used it to design my bathtub after. 

I HAD to include an Crocodile since that is her oldest son favorite.  He has been a "Croc Hunter" for as long as I have known them.  Also, on the right is their new Cockateil.

Also, they have quite a few lizards, so I ended up with a snake in the middle.  On the right is one of their cats (it did not turn out quite as I hoped).

Their newest addition (as of the party) is a very large turtle that lives in a doghouse in their backyard.

The whole motley gang - suds and all.

I piped "Happy Birthday" in icing bubbles and each boy got a towel with his name on it. 

Also, on the bottom left is one of their black labs.  I really would have loved to have more creatures in the tub and also have 2 her boys at the side of the tub, but I ran out of time.

 I made 2 different cakes.  The tub is 2 pound cakes carved into a rounded bottom cake.  Covered in handmade fondant with rolled top edges.  (FYI - I used to use the store bought Wilton fondant, because I thought that fondant would be too hard to make.  I found a great recipe that actually tastes great and is easy.)
I formed all the creatures, towels, bottles, and bathroom floor from colored fondant.  The bubbles is Wilton's Buttercream recipe.  The bottom cake is chocolate.  I think it turned out and it seemed to be a big hit with all the kids.  The thing that cracked me up was that all the kids wanted to eat the animals.

 So, Birthday Girl - This post is dedicated to you!
Happy Birthday and thanks for being my friend,


  1. You posted the boys' cake! I have to say, I personally think you outdid yourself on this one. People still are talking about it. Thank you for the cake and thank you for being such a crazy friend (yes, it takes one to know one)

  2. I am glad that the boys (and everyone) liked it. It is always cool when something turns out like you wanted!


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