U-Pick Strawberries

If you’ve never gone out to a farm and picked your own fruit or vegetables, it’s something you should do. Hubby and I both grew up in farm country, so heading out to an orchard, strawberry farm, etc., is nothing new. And in the west, blackberries grow wild, so stake out your spot early (we found a blackberry patch here, too, but don’t tell anyone. We hate competition).

Today’s harvest was strawberries. 45 minutes to pick 27 pounds, and the rest of the day to make jam, pie, and freeze whole berries. Totally worth it, because now we have Christmas gifts already made for our co-workers!

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Happy Birthday to Us!

WordPress tells me today is I Did it for Johnny’s first birthday! What a year it’s been, with me writing and nobody reading; me sharing pictures, and more people taking notice, because reading is work, and looking at pictures isn’t. 🙂 To celebrate, I think we should have a cake.

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Nothing says Happy First Birthday like rainbows, unicorns and the Loch Ness Monster! But if that’s not your style, have some of this:

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Double chocolate cake, ganache filling and ganache frosting. Melts in your mouth. Not a chocolate fan? Fine:

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Eat some Rubik’s Cube. Unless you’re more the wild party type:

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No chickens were injured in the baking of this cake. If you prefer something more traditional, this one might be up your alley:

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Have some cake and celebrate with us! Not that we need a reason, really.

Easter Fun

Yesterday was a big day. It was the day I’ve been awaiting for many years. Yesterday was my daughter’s birthday, and this was the day we became the same age! Just think, every year from here on out, she’ll be older than me. I could get used to this. Do you think she’ll send me money?

Yesterday was also the day that the Houghs Neck Community Council hosted its annual Easter Bunny Fun Day in the local church hall. Parents and kids decorated cookies, made masks and other crafts, and played Easter-themed games (though this egg toss was nothing like those of my youth. Nary a yolk splatter to be seen). And just when you thought the fun level couldn’t get any higher, the Easter egg hunt! Mother Nature cooperated, and gave us a mild day, which we all appreciated.

As my regular readers know, self-editing has never been my strong suit, so you get to see my favorites, even if that means a few lower-quality images get through. I can’t help myself.

What are your Easter plans? This is our second Easter away from our family – we had intended to be away for a long weekend, but plans have changed, so we’ll be home. I suppose I ought to purchase a ham, so we have some semblance of a celebration.

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This little girl and her big sister had identical shoes, but neither girl held still for long, so I had to settle for a photo of just one pair.

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Another cutie who didn’t spend much time in one place. Until they gave her a cookie …

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An adult put Vaseline on the tips of the kids’ noses, then they raced to see who could pick up four cotton balls and deposit them into a bowl, the fastest.

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He had a little trouble with the off-loading process.

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A ballerina in the house!

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Spoons were provided for the decorating of cookies, but were often ignored.

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Go!

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Create

This week’s photo challenge on The Daily Post is “create,” http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2012/06/22/weekly-photo-challenge-create/, and I feel like I’m cheating a little bit, because I haven’t done any creating with my camera, instead using it to take photos of some of my creations. In my spare time, I’ve been known to bake and decorate cakes, but not your mom’s cakes. These are definitely creations, and because they were made by my own hands, I think they count.

The first two were for the same girl, a friend of my daughter’s. For her birthday, she wanted a ninja bunny:

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And for her senior recital on the cello, a zombie bursting out of a cello.

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Baby shower for a dear friend’s first grandbaby:

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Another friend of my daughter, two birthday cakes (I’m not going to post the third, for fear of offending someone). The top represents her love of unicorns and her recent trip to Scotland. The one below is President Taft, stuck in a bathtub (because that actually happened!

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This one was a birthday cake for a man who worked for Heinz. Got a little smushed, but still cute. And the fries.

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Halloween cupcakes:

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Last but not least, some birthday cakes I made for my daughter:

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Schrute Farms beets. Unfortunately, the cake collapsed before she saw it.

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Marie Antoinette. This was one of the first cakes I made that was odd.

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Rubik’s Cube.

That should do it. I’ve bored you all enough! I hope you enjoy. Anybody have a favorite? I like them for sentimental reasons, so choosing a favorite is hard, but I have to go with Marie Antoinette, because that really was the cake where I stretched the boundaries of what I’d done in the past. And it was a huge hit.