Sunday, February 22, 2009

What a Hoot!

I had a cupcake part yesterday afternoon to try out my new cookbook-Hello Cupcake!

This book is FULL of the most creative decorating ideas. I had Jen, Patterson, Megan and Katherine over to try our hands at 4 of the designs. We tried the owl, creepy crawlers, sunflowers and butterflies. Everyone brought some design elements (from Oreos to M&M's) and we went at it over a bottle of wine and pot of chili. It was so much fun-and even better what we created was AWESOME. Seriously I was very impressed with our design masterpieces. Its best described in pictures:

Our first cupcake attempt was the sunflowers. This required a specific "petal" icing technique which I am not ashamed to say I was HORRIBLE at. Jen, Megan and Katherine rocked at it though. So they were on petal patrol while Patterson and either watched or made teeny. tiny ladybugs for the top of the flowers. Here is Jen trying to show me how to do the icing.

Here is Katherine showing off her mad skills.
Jen and I posing with the finished product. Seriously-don't they look nice??

Patterson and Katherine posing as well. PS-Megan had to leave early, that's why shes not in photos.

Finished product close up. Please pay attention to the fruit roll up leaves on the flowers- I was in charge of cutting those out:)
Next we took on the owls. These little guys turned out ADORABLE. Here is the entire flock-lining up for their close up.

Patterson posing with one of her favorites.

And this little guy was my attempt at owltasticness.
Here is a single owl-in detail.
Next we moved on to what we determined would be the more difficult decorating challenge. We melted chocolate and drew these bugs and then inserted candies for the bodies. When I say we here I mean Jen. She was the one with a steady hand. Note their are no action shots of her doing it-I was afraid to distract her, she really had to concentrate. Patterson, Katherine and I put together the bodies once she finished the detail work. These were time consuming-but I was really jazzed with how they turned out.

Our last project was butterflies. This is not the most perfect example-but you can get the idea. Katherine free handed these-but the chocolate dried so quickly it was tough. We also had our first minor "meltdown" on this cupcake. The bag of chocolate Katherine was using to outline the butterflies exploded. It was funny. I don't have pictures-but we all had a good laugh.
Here is Katherine concentrating as she sprinkles the wings of the butterflies before they dried. Her artistic abilities shined!!
Here is Jen with her bounty of cupcakes. She later let me know that her family was most impressed:)
Here is a shot of all the cupcakes together. Adorable nation!!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Facebook gets a little Two Faced!

If you are not a fan of Facebook then stop reading. This will most likely not interest you. If you have discovered Facebook, for the crack cocaine like addiction that it is, and you don't want to know about the man behind the curtain-then please-SPOILER ALERT-stop reading. For all the rest of you (and a special shout out to my blogs Louisville, KY fans-which is ranking behind Knoxville for Pandora Box followers,) read on.

Some of you might have read about the hullabaloo about Facebook and their new terms of service. For those who haven't-here are some excerpts from an article by Catharine P. Taylor in Social Media Insider:

... In case you never read back to the beginning of it all, earlier this month the company quietly changed its terms of service, to say that Facebook users were now granting "Facebook an irrevocable, perpetual, non-exclusive, transferable, fully paid, worldwide license (with the right to sublicense)" to do whatever it wanted with anything they posted.... By early this morning, Facebook had, not surprisingly, reconsidered -- returning, temporarily, to its old TOS while it works on new ones. Before Facebook made this latest about-face Mark Zuckerberg was saying that, despite the new TOS, there was actually no change to the company ethos "that people own their information and control who they share it with ... " If Facebook was really planning on changing its TOS so that it had the rights to user content, what to make of that statement?

It's almost as though Facebook got hold of the standard freelance writer contract and slipped it into the TOS just to see if anyone would notice.As all of us know by now, someone did... This reminds me a bit of David Ogilvy, who once said, "The consumer is not a moron, she's your wife." I'd like to think that if D.O. were alive today he might add, "And she's got a megaphone."....Fortunately, Zuckerberg says that as the company works to alter its TOS in coming weeks, "users will have a lot of input in crafting these terms." That's great, but it looks as though users are already giving their input.

I am in the syndicating content business. This is fairly crazy stuff. I read it to mean that FB can take any pic, video or whatever that I upload and use it for whatever they please-including to profit from my personal media. Not cool. Here's hoping they turn this around-STAT!!!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Blogtastic-With PICTURES

The last few weeks I have done allot of research for work. Basically trolling through websites and blogs looking for relevant information to my interactive topics. While this can be tedious-it has exposed me to all sorts of new and FUN blogs. I want to share some that I enjoy:

Design and Decor topics, usually is updated every few days

Design and Decor tips, with good pics and instructions on projects

This is a new Food network healthy eating blog that I have been enjoying very much.

Design and such

And here are some pics that I have found that I HEART!!

These are cupcakes from a little boys birthday party-how much do I want birthday cupcakes with me wearing a crown stuck on the top??? I am totally using this idea for something. Jen-I might need your photoshop expertise;)
On a related note. If you don't know-I love cupcakes. I love their tiny size and amazing taste. But-this one year birthday cake takes the cupcake to a whole new level. GINOURMOUS CUPCAKES simply have more to love.