Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easter baking

 I made Easter-themed cupcakes for a gal last year and she asked me to make them again this year so the challenge was to change it up a bit. I had a blast.

We're heading off for Easter brunch and I offered to bring the cake. It's a lemon sponge with lemon curd filling. Happy Easter!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Spring is sproinging

 It seems to be taking forever but as the snow is receding, the crocuses are popping out of the lawn.

I especially love when the pussy willows start to appear. It's still pretty cool here in these parts, and it even snowed a few days back, but Ol' Man Winter is on his way out...

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Naked Oreo cake

Since so-called "naked cakes" seem to be all the rage in the cake world, I thought I'd try my hand at one. I had a potluck dinner to go to so I decided to bring 
a naked Oreo cake with me. Everyone loved it!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Fun with Fondant

 Last week I gave a classed entitled Fun with Fondant at The Quirky Carrot in Alexandria.

 There were 12 very enthusiastic students.

 They all mixed colours and covered (and decorated) their own cakes.

 Lots of icing sugar flying around. Rolling pins too!

 Some gals made zebra-striped cakes.

 Others made them look quilted.

 One gal did a flower power, tribute to the '60s cake.

All the cakes turned out just great. The gals were so creative and 
it showed in their creations.

All in all a great evening with a really fun bunch of creative women.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Flowers for Joan

My friend Joan marked a landmark birthday recently. 
What better way to celebrate than with cake?

Friday, April 11, 2014

Maple Time

It's that time of year when you can sample hot maple taffy that's swirled on the snow and ready to eat on a stick! So happy spring has finally arrived and the sap is flowing!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Buttercream Basics

 I gave a class on buttercream basics at The Quirky Carrot in Alexandria.

 There were six people in the class.

 Everyone got a cupcake and a 6" cake to decorate.

 After my demo, everyone went to town on their cakes.

 Here's a pic of Julia, who owns the Carrot, taking pix of a busy student.

 Lots of different techniques. Here a gal attempts basketweave...and did a great job!

 Cupcake with green shells.

 A sunflower cupcake in the making.

 This cake ended up as a beautiful underwater scene replete with seaweed and fish.

 More basketweave.

 Good piping bag techniques...

 Here's the underwater scene getting its fishy.

 Daughter helping mother making a rose.

 Attempting stringwork and lace. Wow!

The graduating class with their handywork. Well done class of 2014!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

6th Annual Winter Picnic

 This year we had our annual picnic in the woods on April 6th.

The snow bridge is still intact over the little creek, which is running from the melt.

 It was 4C and sunny...actually a nice temperature for a hot cuppa tea.

 Everything tastes better outside, right?

 We had to snowshoe in this year there's still so much snow.
And we got to try out the new table which isn't perfectly flat...but who cares!

 This year's fare was kosher salami sandwiches on dark rye.

And a little salsa and chips too!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Masked bandits

As they come out of hibernation, raccoons are very hungry and end up at the nearest bird feeder. Mine! There were FIVE of the little darlings when I looked out. By the time I opened the window to take the photo, I only managed to snap two and a half of them. The fled but were back an hour later!

Monday, March 31, 2014

Harbingers of spring?

 It's supposedly spring but yesterday it snowed and March 30th just isn't looking a lot like March 30th! But I heard a pair of cardinals singing so that's a good sign.

And look what the wind blew in. A red-breasted nuthatch. I haven't seen one in many years. Was delighted to be able to snap a photo of him. Sweet little bird.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Snowy owl

While relaxing a few moments before friends were coming for dinner, the phone rang and my friend Peggi said, "Alert!" Apparently she had seen a snowy owl on her way to eat out and on their way back it was still there. 
I called my friends who were coming to dinner (they hadn't left yet) and said, "Give me ten minutes," and off Richard and I ran down the road to find the owl. We were lucky that he was still there and Richard got this great shot of him. Spring is in the air and they will be moving back north now so it was a lucky find.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Keeping it Local

The other night I had in mind to make a stick to the ribs supper and attempted rack of lamb. Came out great. I also served a side of my own sugar snap peas from last July's harvest and my own potatoes, carrots and wild garlic from the cold room. All delicious!

More peas in the freezer so I made a soup, which I put through the food processor and then strained. And then I added last night's leftover pea pods. Yum!

Friday, March 14, 2014

What the storm blew in...

 We had another dump of storm and the birds gathered near the feeder.

 I was incredibly surprised to see two cedar waxwings. 
I hope they found some wild berries to chow down on.

 The downy woodpecker boy was pretty happy when I refilled my suet holder.

 Mr. and Mrs. Cardinal hung around the better part of the day...

 ...but he's a very shy lad and I couldn't snap a photo of him.

 Mrs. Cardinal, however, let me get plenty of photos of her.

 The flat feeder that Richard made for me is a real hit with the non-feeder feeding birds.

The blue jays had taken a break when I took this one. Usually there are four or five of them fighting over the peanuts.

And this little red squirrel was covered in snow as he chowed down 
on some sunflower seeds. OK, now I"m ready for spring!


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