Cautionary Cake Tale

Today I have a cautionary cake tale. I love dessert, I mean, I make cakes…all the time. So a delicious cake was important to me. This is our cake:

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Chocolate Cake with chocolate buttercream makes a delicious cake! Now take a look at this:

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This is the first and last bite of cake I got! Do not forget to eat your delicious cake! I became totally distracted and completely missed eating the cake! Your wedding will be a whirlwind, if you can, have someone set aside some cake for you to take home. I was so sad I missed it, the one bite I had was delicious though!

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Picnic Pinspiration!

Maybe it’s because I’m hungry right now, and it’s a gorgeous spring day, but I saw this picture and thought, “I want to do that!”

I love peanuts, and it is always super fun to pop them open and chuck the shells on the ground. It feels very summer. And in Maine we can’t wait for summer. Winter is far too long! So Pinspiration today is all about picnics, and how awesome a picnic wedding would be! There is something so great about laying on a blanket in the cool of the shade on a hot summer day that’s picture perfect!

Pinspiration

The weather has been so nice here, I’m thinking about planning a picnic date for fun…but instead of cooking, I’m going to get take out from a place we haven’t tried yet! Life is so much sweeter when winter is gone!

Blizzard in New England!

So I’m sure that you’ve heard but New England got blasted with snow this past weekend. Maine is snow country but even we broke records over the weekend! Portland got almost 32 inches of snow.

If you haven’t seen enough snow pictures from the various social networks, here’s the view out of my back window.

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This blizzard really shut down New England, but a lot of the weddings, at least those in the news, went on as planned!

How do you make the best of a blizzard-y situation? Well I gotta say, it has to be pretty hard to brave a storm like the one we just had! But one thing I’ve always wanted to do is make real snow snow cones! Now lots of people would think it’s weird to want to eat snow cones in the snow, because…cold…but I think I love cold things in the winter most…not sure why!


Consider a fresh snow cone on your special day, especially if you can grab it right from outside!

I Am A Forgetful Bride

When I think about all that still has to be done, I cringe and/or have nightmares/panic attacks. I don’t even want to think about how it’s going to be a month, two weeks, a week before the wedding. There are so many details to plan and coordinate that I don’t know if I can remember it all! I decided to do some thinking and some research to make a list of things that brides typically forget.

1) Extra Money

Ok, I’ve budgeted for this one, but seriously, emergencies are going to arise that you are going to need extra cash for. I wish I could think of some circumstances right now, but I’m sure, once it happens to me, I will have plenty of examples! So budget for extra cash that day. It may be best just to have actual cash on hand, that way, if someone doesn’t take credit for some reason, you’re not totally out of luck. Also, it is customary to tip vendors, and cash is the best way to get that accomplished as well.

Trunk

2) Packing everything.

For me this means packing up all the decor and projects I’ve worked on in addition to that weeks’ clothing and toiletries. But packing for you could just mean an overnight bag for after the wedding, or packing for your honeymoon. In all the confusion don’t forget to pack what you need! I hate packing under pressure too, so don’t do it the night before, make like a pregnant lady and have a bag packed in advance!

3) Bringing your cell phone charger

I guess this goes along with packing, but that day you are going to need your cell phone and if it’s not charged because you forgot that all important item, your bridezilla moments may get worse! If you are a super forgetful person, you may want to have an extra charger on hand and packed in your bag. It’s always better to have more than less!

4) Remembering important documents

Ok so this is a HUGE one for me. Um, marriage license, bring it. This may seem like a “duh” to most of you, but I hate dealing with legalities and paperwork. I am super awesome with everything money, except the paperwork side of it. I throw out or lose my receipts, and I have important papers sort of strewn about the house. So going to the courthouse with all my “important papers” and filling out a marriage license is one of those big deals that I could very easily put off till the last-minute and forget to do.

Let’s also not forget, for those of you taking exotic vacations, Passports! This one can’t wait till the last-minute, it should be done A.S.A.P.! It takes a little while to process everything, so if you wait till the last-minute, you may not be able to go on your trip!

5) Emergency Kit

Courtesy o’ “The Knot” here is a great list of things to bring and fit into a small bridal emergency kit. Little snafus will happen on the big day, but putting together this little kit can really help. EXTRA bonus if you maid of honor gifts you with her own personal emergency kit made just for you!

  • Aspirin (or pain reliever of choice)
  • Band-Aids
  • Bottle of water
  • Chalk (to cover up any last minute smudges or smears on your wedding dress)
  • Clear nail polish (for stocking runs)
  • Corsage pins
  • Dental floss/toothpicks
  • Eye drops
  • Extra earring backs
  • Extra panty hose
  • Hair pins/ponytail holder
  • Hand towelettes
  • Hem tape
  • Matches
  • Mini sewing kit
  • Safety pins
  • Scotch tape
  • Sedatives (don’t ask!)
  • Small folding scissors
  • Smelling salts (while we don’t expect anyone to faint, it has been known to happen)
  • Spot remover
  • Static-cling spray
  • Straws (so the bride can stay hydrated without messing up her lipstick)
  • Tissues
  • Tweezers

6) Feeding your vendors

This actually factors into extra costs, so make sure to find out the vendors that will need food and count them as one of your guests when you give the final head count to the venue! Sometimes contracts stipulate that you have to feed their people, other times they say it doesn’t matter. I’d say, as a rule, feed your vendors, it’s just nice. 🙂

7) Feed your bridal party

This doesn’t pertain to the reception dinner (I would HOPE you’d feed them at the reception) but I mean throughout the day. Have some food brought to the place you are all getting ready so everyone can snack. The beautify-ing process can be tough and your ladies need rations! Don’t forget about the men either! Boys DEFINITELY need food! Go grocery shopping a day or two before for some food, that way you are full stocked.

8) Feed yourself!

This seems like common sense to me, but I don’t know how many times I’ve heard that brides went through their day without eating a thing! Bad things happen when you don’t eat and drink! Take care of that gorgeous body of yours!

9) Someone to take care of the little details

There are things that are going to happen on your wedding day that are out of your control. Me, being the control freak I am, will want to fix all of these problems. So, in order to not be putting out little fires on the day of my wedding, I will, instead, have someone there to help me get everything accomplished that I need done. Make sure that the person knows the “who, what, when, where, why” of your day’s itinerary and has a copy, that way, if the DJ is playing the wrong song, or there isn’t enough seating for Aunt Sally and Uncle Albert, you have someone who can take care of that!

10) Commit it all to memory

As much as I am telling you all this advice, I’m taking it all down in my own head, and this is a big one. I have heard that the day goes by SO fast, and it is so important for you to remember everything and really enjoy it! So in that spirit, try to commit it all to memory as it’s happening, even the problem parts, because you’ll want to look back one day and remember it all.

Well those are all the important things I can think of. If you have any I should add to the list, please feel free to comment! Since I haven’t gone through it all, I don’t know what to expect!

Pumpkin Season!

I have been pumpkin carving forever. Halloween was a pretty big deal in our household growing up. Not in any sort of religious capacity, just that it’s a super fun holiday and right around my birthday so my family always made a big deal. I love a good pumpkin carving session ESPECIALLY when you pop in “The Nightmare Before Christmas.” I think I know all the words to “This Is Halloween.”

Every year, it’s super important to me that I do a pumpkin. It’s almost like it’s not October without pumpkin carving and delicious pumpkin seeds to eat!

Some of my Pumpkin creations!

I know that if I was going to have a fall wedding, it would absolutely include some awesome pumpkin carves! But there is so much more that you can do with pumpkins! Here are a few ideas for a pumpkin themed wedding:

Pumpkins, especially the glowing ones, make great decor for your wedding day!

Or try serving some delicious pumpkin treats!

This is just the most wonderful season! I hope to see all the fall weddings have at least ONE jack-o-lantern!

 

Guestbook Ideas, Favor Ideas, AND Chocolate Cake!

I have been so tired lately. It has been a black hole of work, home, sleep, work, home, sleep. This is my favorite month of the year, but it has just been raining non-stop and no one can enjoy the fall when it’s pouring rain. bleh.

I was so down today, I just needed something delicious. Ever just need dessert? Yeah, today was one of those days. PMS + Horrible Weather = Me getting fat on dessert. I don’t always have time to bake some awesome creation so instead I take the easy way to deliciousness and all you need is 5 minutes!

I’ll share my 5-minute secret:

4 Tablespoons Flour

4 Tablespoons Sugar

2 Tablespoons Cocoa

1 Egg

3 Tablespoons Oil

3 Tablespoons Milk

3 Tablespoons Chocolate Chips (optional)

A Dash Vanilla

1 Large Coffee Mug

Put all of that in the coffee mug, mix it all around REALLY well, get out all the chunks of flour, stick it in the microwave for 3 minutes. After that, you are all done! And you have a ready-to-eat chocolate cake!

That is my fiance on the mug! I designed it and had it made for him 🙂 an inside joke of ours!

Now I understand the cake doesn’t look like the most delicious cake you’ve ever had, but you get what you get for five minutes. 🙂 The chocolate chips really make the cake super yummy and it is the perfect dessert to eat on a cold and rainy night.

I make this cake a lot, because it takes five minutes, and I get a yummy dessert, but today as I was making it, I was thinking about how much I love baking. I bake something almost every week for my friends, and I love trying and learning new recipes. So why not incorporate a little of that into the wedding? I’m really leaning towards using recipe cards as a guest book!

I love the thought of recipes passing from generation to generation, and I would love to have a great recipe along with my guests’ well-wishes! I of course realized that I was probably not the first person to think about this as a guest book idea so I sought it out on Pinterest. Some recipe card inspiration for you!

So if you can make cake in a mug, you can have delicious favors in a jar! If cooking and baking is your thing, why not send your guests home with your favorite recipes, easily transported home in a jar, and super easy to put together!

I personally want to try the quick bread! It looks like a super yummy recipe!

What the Wedding Industry Wants You to Do…and What You Can Do Instead! Part II

I always thought the most expensive part of the wedding would be the venue…and I wasn’t totally wrong, but a close second (and maybe a first depending on your venue) is the food. Food for a wedding is an overwhelming, jaw-dropping price tag that I don’t think anyone sees coming. I’m only feeding 50 people and I couldn’t believe it. It doesn’t matter if you are going sit-down dinner or buffet style, the price is still astronomical.

The situation I have now is the best option for us, but originally I thought I would cut costs by asking the caterer to serve “home cookin” southern-style type meals. Everyone loves chicken, macaroni and cheese, and mashed ‘taters! Even with serving food that isn’t considered “fine dining” it still costs an arm and a leg. So here are some ways you can cut costs on your food budget.

I know this is going to sound nuts but have your hors d’oeuvres passed out by the catering staff instead of a buffet or table.

I know, I know, all that food looks expensive…and it probably is, I just like to tease you. 🙂 If the catering staff passes out your hors d’oeuvres it controls food intake. You may be looking at a little more in cost for the staff, but your guests probably haven’t eaten in hours, and those hors d’oeuvres are the first thing they get to devour, so they go pretty fast. If your caterer has to re-stock hors d’oeuvres that’s more money out of your pocket.

Next I’m going to ask you to break a rule of the wedding industry.

Only one meat option. I know it is customary to have at least two choices of meat for dinner, but trust me, it’s not that big of a deal. Instead, offer once choice of meat, and lots of vegetarian options as sides (which tend to be cheaper). Your guests who don’t like their meat will still be able to have plenty of sides to fill them up.

And now onto dessert! This is where my advice isn’t entirely needed because most people are breaking out of this box by themselves…but what is the biggest dessert item that the industry says is a MUST have?

Yup. The cake. And not just any cake. If you want YOUR wedding to be THE talked about wedding you must get a SEVEN TIER wedding cake. Wait…what? I don’t think even the biggest of wedding parties could consume that much cake. That is a lot of dessert. I don’t think I could eat more than 50 slices…

Seriously though, you absolutely do not need a seven tier wedding cake. If you are like me and love dessert, there are some much more awesome, cheaper options, or, to be honest, if you love cake, you can still have it, just, please, not seven tiers tall…I hate to see good dessert go to waste.

All Photos From The Sweet And Saucy Shop

Cupcakes, Mini Pies, Macarons, Cake Pops, and Pudding in a Mason Jar…mmmmm it all looks delicious! Now of course don’t choose all of these options, that would defeat the purpose of cutting costs. But it is much cheaper to do small items in bulk than it is to do one big cake. Some of these, like the pudding in a jar are very DIY-ish too. Then, if you still want a cake on top of that, get a small two tier cake for just you, that way you still have something to cut into.

If you still aren’t convinced, and you love the WOW factor of a seven tier cake, it is possible on a tight budget, you just have to pull a fast one on your guests. The bottom layer of your cake will be all cake, and the rest of the layers will be styrofoam. You’ll cut the cake and none’s the wiser! If you have a large wedding, serve sheet cake as the alternative (SO MUCH cheaper), or if you have a small wedding, get 2 or 3 of the seven tiers in cake and the rest in styrofoam.

Those are just a few tips from the BIGGEST offenders of a budget. The cost of something is all in your hands! Be creative and think outside the box! You can absolutely pull this off! (At least that’s what I tell myself every day!)

If you have any other money-saving tips I want to hear them! I love your comments, so keep ’em coming!

What’s the DEAL With the Mustaches?!

Ok, is it me? Or has everyone in the wedding world gone facial-hair crazy? If you really wanted to have a mustache-themed wedding there is enough stuff out there for you to do so! I’m not a personal fan of the mustache in general. I love my man, and I can’t imagine him without a beard and stache, but at the same time, JUST a mustache looks a little comical to me. Who are you trying to be? Snidely Whiplash?

I do have to admit, I was a little taken by some of the things. After all, you do have to giggle when you see a person holding up a silly mustache in a photobooth, but after you see 80 BILLION of them, it gets old. I think it just about time to either retire this trend, or keep it to a minimum. If you MUST have mustaches, keep them to your Photobooth (along with funny lips, glasses and hats), or maybe put them on your invites, but covering a whole wedding in mustaches? Why?

So in the spirit of you picking ONE aspect of your wedding to incorporate mustaches, I will provide a few ideas.

A legit T-shirt, click here to order…

Have a candy bar? Make your guests “Stache” some candy. Personally I don’t want facial hair anywhere near my food or beverage, but to each his own I guess.

I will not voice my opinion on whether or not to wear mustaches on your person, only that perhaps we grow mustaches the only place we should wear them…

Ok, I’m going to say it: I like the car. It’s funny, and at least it’s nothing we’ve seen before.

So put all of these collages together and you have a mustache wedding…but don’t…please. Weddings are becoming to trendy for trendy’s sake. Everyone wants a new and exciting way to shock the wedding world, and then everyone jumps on the band wagon. And yes, I know this is coming from the girl who wants a DIY rustic barn wedding, but at least the little touches are significant to us. If mustaches are significant to you, then I (nor anyone else) would hold issue. But the band wagon isn’t always the place to be. Make your wedding unique to you, and maybe you’ll start your own trend, who knows?

Also,

My dog had a mustache before it was cool. 🙂

GEEK WEEK Food & Drink!

Ok so THIS is an area where I really want to bring out the geek in our relationship: cake. I know I have had ideas in the past about a nice rustic cake to go with the theme, but I’m really coming to believe that sticking to a theme is less important than highlighting what makes up you as a couple. So I think for our cake we really want to do something fun and geeky. Of course I had to grab some inspiration, of not only cake, but some awesome geeky food and drink too!

I first want to highlight some of the really fantastic geek cakes out there. There are SO many, but here are some of my favorites!

The Mario cake is hands down my favorite cake! I love that it’s so bright and colorful, and of course Mario gets his princess in the end…if only she would stop getting kidnapped, then they could at least settle down! If you want to make your own geek cake, the Rubik’s Cube is linked to a tutorial on how to make it! It doesn’t look too hard either!

But I want to give special attention to a truly awesome cake. This cake was made by the famous Charm City Cakes which is featured on the show, Ace of Cakes, and it is probably the most awesome geek cake ever:

This is an EPIC reproduction of the final battle in Ghostbusters, in which they defeat the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man! Who DOESN’T love this scene? If this happened in real life, I probably would have run outside and made gigantic s’mores. AND I haven’t shown you the most awesome part of the cake yet!

How cool is it that they made the streams light up? It’s a good thing that nothing bad happened to the cake, as the streams are crossed, and we all know, you don’t cross the streams!

Cake isn’t the only food where elements of geek can be incorporated! Here are some favors and snacks that would make any geek wedding shine!

How fun are the cereal snacks? Your guests will definitely smile at these little touches!

How about some geeky drinks?

I also love the retro Pez Dispensers, this will definitely bring guests back to those comics they loved as kid!

If you want to maybe class up your geek a little bit, how about an 8-bit wine bottle?

8-Bit Vintners will bottle wine with the 8-bit label for any classy geek occasion!

Are you choosing to show your geek through your cake? Maybe your drinks? I am still leaning toward a very geeky cake!

 

 

 

 

Mason Jar Eye Candy!

I have a box of Mason Jars sitting in my spare room just waiting to be a craft, but I can’t decide what to do with them! I think because the Pinterest market is SATURATED with mason jars! There are thousands upon thousands of pictures of the versatility of a glass jar.

First of all, I was curious as to what the origins of a Mason Jar really was. Because let’s be honest, Masons are people who basically lay brick work for a living, or you are a Free Mason…which is a whole different story. But the truth is it has nothing to do with actual masons, instead it’s about a man named Mason who invented and patented the handy screw cap and seal for the jar. He has made all of our fruit-canning lives so much easier. I’ll bet he didn’t know that many years later we would be putting candles in them and hanging them from trees.

So now how do I put these jars to wedding use? Well darlings, let me count the ways!

1) Luminaries. It’s the new trend to help set the mood lighting for your wedding. They seem to be way cheaper than most other forms of lighting, and they really do create a nice setting

The book pages especially intrigue me because of the book theme to our wedding, perhaps that’s what I’ll do with all the mason jars…

2) Drinks! Even though they are primarily used for storage of jams and jellies, many people drink out of their mason jars as well. If you are having an outdoor wedding, it might be great to have everyone drink out of a small mason jar. What you do with the mason jars afterwards…well I guess you have to make A LOT of jam, or you have a whole new set of rustic glassware.

I LOVE the idea of making lemonade drinks beforehand! A lemonade bar would cost way more money than buying aluminum tubs and more mason jars and pre-mixing lemonade for your guests.

3) Food and Favors! Do you want a creative dessert without cupcakes? Or maybe a yummy favor for your guests to take home? Try putting delicious food in your mason jars! YUM!

4) And lastly, decor! Mason Jars have to be the easiest form of decor, pretty much ready made decor actually. Put a bunch of flowers in them and you’re done! 🙂

I hope you enjoyed your mason jar eye candy! I think my favorite uses of the jar are the pre-prepared lemonade drinks, and the book votives! What are you using your mason jars for? What’s your favorite way to use mason jars?