STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE SANTAS

this is a super easy dessert that look super cute, and are bites of deliciousness - why wouldn't you make it!

ingredients:
- 8 ounces Cream Cheese
- 8 ounces Heavy Whipping Cream
- 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup Sugar
- 1/2 tsp lemon juice
- 1 pound of Strawberries, trimmed
- chocolate sprinkles
directions:

1. Beat cream cheese, 1/2 tsp vanilla and sugar until creamy
2. in another bowl, whip heavy cream until peaks form then fold into mixture
3. transfer mixture into a ziploc bag and cut off corner for piping heads
4. pipe round ball of cheesecake into the cut strawberries to make head, place hat on top

5. transfer remaining cheesecake to another ziploc bag and cut a SMALL hole in the corner
6. squeeze tiny dots on the body of the strawberry as buttons, and on the top of the hat

7. last step: use chocolate sprinkles (!) to make the eyeballs, gently push them in

refrigerate for an hour!
ps. some recipes will tell you to use whipping cream instead of cheesecake,
that is a FAIL = it will collapse in no time.

try this one - you won't regret it :)

ANGELS WE HAVE HEARD ON HIGH




this is my christmas contribution to the world haha
i decided to plop on my computer, keyboard and usb mic in my bedroom and put this together.
i've been trying to figure out a recording program Logic these days, so this is my little exploration.
just a mini project for the christmas season!


RUFFLE CAKE

this cake is oh so easy and it's a BEAUT.
i made this cake for a staff christmas party, (which landed on my birthday - and turned out to be my own birthday cake ha ha). Christmas cake and Birthday cake in one! bam.

for this design, you'll need a #104 piping tip
(you can buy at Walmart or Michaels for a couple bucks)
first step: make your cake!
i made 3 layers of a red velvet cake and glued them together with some buttercream frosting.

buttercream frosting:
i tripled this recipe below for my cake!!

ingredients:
- 3 cups powdered sugar 
- 1 cup butter 
-1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
-1 to 2 tablespoons whipping cream 

directions:
Whisk sugar and butter on low-medium speed for around 3 minutes.  Add vanilla and cream and continue to whisk for another minute.
use the icing to glue the 3 layers of the cake together and cover evenly the outside of the cake.
let it sit in the fridge for a bit before you start piping.
then just follow the instructions in this video below:
.
.
thank you Cake Style!

CHOCOLATE, PEANUT BUTTER CHEESECAKES

this dessert takes a simple no-bake cheesecake into mini cups for a more elegant look!

cheesecake ingredients: 
(14 small servings)
- 20 oreo cookies
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 8 ounces cream cheese
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 1.5 cups powdered sugar
- 16 ounces frozen whipped topping
- 1 cup milk
- 1 pack (3.9 ounces) instant chocolate pudding mix

topping ingredient:
- melted chocolate!
cheesecake directions:
adapted from taste of home

layer one: crush 20 oreo cookies & toss with butter
- press into bottom of cups; set aside

layer two: in a mixing bowl - beat the cream cheese, peanut butter & 1 cup powdered sugar
- fold in half of the whipped topping (thawed)
- **take a ziploc bag, fill it with this mixture, cut a corner and pipe it into the cups on top of crust

layer three: take another bowl and beat the milk, pudding mix and 1/2 cup powdered sugar for 2 minutes (low speed). then let it sit for 2 minutes
- fold in the other half of whipped topping
- take another ziploc bag and fill it with this mixture, repeat as above - cut a corner and pipe as top layer in the cups

that's it!  now for the topping...
chocolate topping:

step 1: melt some of your favourite chocolate! - place melted chocolate in a bag (i use a freezer bag), cut a corner of the bag (a SMALL hole) and create a checkered pattern (as above) on wax paper

step 2: after the chocolate has dried completely, take a cookie cutter and gently cut out circles
as simple as that, you have some gorgeous, delicate chocolate toppings for your cheesecakes!
this simple dessert is worth a try.

CHRISTMAS WREATHS

this project is sooo ridiculously simple that you would be silly not to try it!
grab one of these wreaths from Michaels Arts & Crafts store for about $14
and pick out some flowers that you'd love to see on your wreath.
i didn't use glue or any adhesive. simply use the wire from the flowers to stick into the wreath.
you'll literally have a festive wreath in minutes!
enjoy it friends!

CANDIED HAZELNUTS

here we go - let's try out some artsy hazelnut decorations!
first off, toast and peel your hazelnuts!

fun fact: in grocery stores (superstore for sure), hazelnuts are called filberts!
why you ask? apparently because they resemble full beards, where the word filbert comes from.
OR because hazelnuts mature on or close to St. Philibert's Day, August 20th
haha so if you can't find hazelnuts, find the filberts :)

to toast... simply stick them on a baking pan in the oven at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes!
then roll them around in a dry cloth to peel.

our NEXT step!
grab a bunch of skewers and gently twist the ends into the hazelnuts.
tip: avoid twisting skewers in the natural crack of the hazelnuts, they may split in half
once you've got that ready, it's time to make some caramelized sugar!
for me, this was the hardest part.
i followed different recipes, failed 2X - then came across this one
trust me - follow that recipe (the first way) and make sure once the sugar boils...
STOP STIRRING!!!

once you've got it, let the caramelized sugar sit to cool for a few minutes (to thicken)
then start dipping your hazelnut skewers into the sugar.
wait for a thin strand to drip down and then secure the skewer on the edge of your countertop
underneath a cutting board (make sure there are paper towels on your floor to cover for the mess!)

{ if the sugar in the pot starts turning hard, just place it over the stove on low again to heat up
and it'll be ready for more dipping }

a brilliant idea i read from another blog is to secure the skewers on the countertop over an opened dishwasher.  that way the dishwasher can pick up the mess and wash it out when you run it.

after 5-10 minutes of allowing the candied hazelnuts to harden,
use scissors to cut the tips as short as you want them (around 4 inches?)
then simply remove them from the skewers
(tip: if they're stuck too hard to the skewer, use scissors to gently cut 
the edge where the candied hazelnut meets the skewer to release)

place the candied hazelnut on your dessert, and there you have it!

i placed them on my mini nutella-banana crepe cakes.
click on the link above, or picture below to see that recipe!


MINI CREPE CAKES

this dessert is a gooder! 

NUTELLA BANANA mini crepe cakes

thanks to my sis-in-law, i tried my first crepe cake at her place in ottawa about a year ago & boy was it deeeelicious! i came home and have made a bunch of these cakes since then. it's definitely a favourite.
but this time i wanted to spice it up a bit and try making MINI crepe cakes. so, here we go.
first off, MAKE the crepes. CLICK HERE for the best crepe recipe out there.
(super chewy, must use this recipe!) the recipe above makes about 8 crepes - and using a 2 inch cookie cutter - you can get about 7-8 mini crepes in just 1 regular size crepe!
{that would equal to about 60 mini crepes}

you generally want about 20 crepe layers per cake to make it a decent cake.
so from the recipe above - it will only give you 3 mini cakes.

feel free to double, triple, quadruple the recipe above to get more mini cakes
but of course, the more you multiply - the more work for you!

below is about 3X the recipe above
after you've got your mini crepes all set to go - make your nutella filling!
of course, the amount you make will vary depending on how many crepes you make.

nutella filling (this amount is great for 9 mini cakes):
simply whisk 1 1/3 cups heavy cream with 1.5 cups of Nutella
(for us Canadians, since we can't buy heavy cream at our local grocery store 
- use this recipe to make your own - super easy)
so at this point - you have your mini crepes & your filling.
you are set.

remember TWENTY layers per cake.
start with a crepe, add some nutella filling with a spoon, add a crepe layer, add nutella
repeat over & over until you have 20 layers ending with the crepe on top (for now).
place in the fridge to cool & so the layers don't slip everywhere!
{ optional: slice bananas into thin slices to throw in the layers every third layer }

continue making all your mini crepes.

once finished - use the EXTRA nutella filling to pour over the top 
of each mini crepe cake for a nice finish.
**you can use a plastic bag filled with nutella filling and a cut hole in the corner to pour evenly**

LAST but not least, CLICK HERE to find out how to make the Candied Hazelnuts
as decoration for the lovely crepe cakes!

hope you enjoy.


CHEESECAKE TOPPINGS

there are probably a billion cheesecake recipes out there that are absolutely brilliant.
so why bother wasting my time writing another, and your time reading another
when we can talk about the TOPPINGS that make them pretty :)

on this post, i want to talk about 2 different types of toppings!

#1. the chocolate swirls
(like in the picture above)

check out my previous post here  
the last picture in the post will show you how to prepare your plastic bag.

1. simply fill your plastic bag full of chocolate
2. melt it in the microwave for 20 seconds and rotate (continue until all melted)
3. cut a little corner in your bag
and voila! you've got your piping bag!

the next step is to get wax paper...
4. squeeze out fun designs on the wax paper such as the ones above
* make sure you add a little vertical, thicker bottom to jam into the cheesecake *
5. then just stick the wax paper with the chocolate in the freezer to harden
and you've got some beautiful chocolate toppers!

#2. the raspberry puree
(yup, like the picture above)

simple, simple ladies and gents!

all you need:
- 1 cup raspberries
- 1/8 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1/4 cup water

1. heat up raspberries in a saucepan until it's all mushy
2. add sugar & stir together
3. mix in cornstarch & water 
* fun side note, cornstarch must be mixed first with cold water.
if corn starch is mixed with hot water = it gets lumpy! *
4. use a sifter to get rid of all the seeds
and you've got a sweet, raspberry puree!

hope those simple ideas help inspire you in your next baking dishes!



EDIBLE SHIRT

my dad's birthday is TODAY!
my dad has a yellow shirt that seems to be one of his favourites, 
so i thought i'd make him a cake to match it! :)
here we go!
start off with a cake base.  i wanted to make the cake a little smaller since it was just for 4 of us..
i took a 9x9 cake pan and made a brownie-cake, then just cut it into a rectangular shape.
make sure you cut off the top "muffin top" to flatten it!
i made a buttercream icing to cover the cake, then stuck it in the fridge to cool off.

in the meantime, i rolled out my yellow fondant (**that you make the night before!)
and got my green tie ready!

to make the striped look...cut & lay out the stripes, and simply use a rolling pin to roll the stripes in!
i wish i had more pictures to post from the process, but the lighting was terrible!
basically, 1. take your yellow fondant to flatten over the cake like our last fondant cake
2. lay your tie on the cake
3. lay your pocket on the cake
4. make your collar (long rectangle folded horizontally in half)

and that's it!
remember to use water to glue the pieces together
side tips: if the fondant gets shiny - you can use a paper towel to dab off the shine
(i'm not a huge fan of shine!)
give it a tryyyy!


DIY ACCESSORIES: 2 EASY WAYS HOW

my husband & i moved to cloverdale! it has been a slow process, 
which is why i haven't been able to post on here for a while!  we finally are getting settled so i found some time to make these flower headbands this long weekend! give it a try on your weekend off, it only took about an hour to make 2 headbands!
first and foremost: get the flowers! 
i went to Wal-Mart and bought a stem of flowers for $2.00 each.
it all depends on how many different types of flowers you want...
you could literally just buy one stem and that's all you need!

in my case i bought 4 different flowers = $8.00 (and had plenty to spare)

i'll show you two ways to make these headbands:

the first: only needs flowers and green floral wire

the second: needs flowers, hemp & a hot glue gun (polyester elastic optional)
the first way to make these:
- measure the circumference of your head and wrap the wire a couple times around like above
- cut the stem of the flower about an inch long and use the wire to wrap the flower on tight
- continue adding all the flowers desired

THAT'S IT. 
how stinkin simple is that!
i personally wrapped the floral wire with hemp all the way around after i added my 6-7 flowers
or keep going around the full headband with flowers to make a crown if you want.
completely optional!
this headband below uses the same technique
i just wrapped green yarn around the headband to add a different touch instead of hemp!
the second way to make these:
in my opinion, is the easier way!

you simply make your headband out of the hemp (or material you prefer)
then HOT GLUE gun the flowers down to the headband
(i added the leaves to add a nice touch)
{optional: i added the black polyester elastic to the back (sewed on a small piece) because i like having the headband hug my head tight when worn. if you do this you want to make the elastic stretch to equal the same circumference of the headband}

that's literally all you do.
i even used this white rose headband at my wedding reception! 
pictures at the bottom of this post!
and so if you're bored this weekend, give it a try!
add to your accessories bin!
would love to see what you come up with.
---
to see the birdcage veil i made for my wedding click here

to hear the song i wrote for our wedding click here

SUMMER LOVIN'

so I started this blog out last year sometime just as a creative outlet, and want to thank ya'll for your summer lovin this year!
i've found my posts on a bunch of incredible websites and am pumped to share some with you all!

first and foremost - Pinterest.  
i had no idea there was a way of seeing all your posts from your website until i ran into this page!
awe-some.


then got some lovin' from curbly.com
never heard of this site before - but am in love with it already!

apartmenttherapy.com found my floating bench post 

gawker websites are incredible


i'm slowly figuring out instructables.com 

and google+
i don't understand where all these page views are coming from, but keep em comin!

thanks for all the love out there! 
you're welcome to follow me on any of the sites above & keep checkin back, i'll find some neat ways to try and impress you all with DIY projects, baking, maybe music sometime soon ;)

AND, if you know of other great websites out there sharing similar things
 - feel free to share, i'd love to check them out.