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Tiny Tidbits of my Time

Spiderman Birthday Party ~ Part 3 ~ Cake and Cookies! April 11, 2012

Filed under: Tasty Bits — tidbittimes @ 1:59 pm
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I spent quite a bit of time on the cakes and cookies for Will’s Spiderman party (although it was much easier than last year’s big Thomas cake).  I really enjoy the challenge of cake and cookie decorating!  When I saw the Spiderman cookies on Pintrest and looked further at the directions, I knew I needed to give them a try.  I thought they would make great party favors.

I found the idea and tutorial for making these fabulous cookies on The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle.  She gives great instructions!  I also used a recipe I found on Pintrest (Authentic Suburban Gourmet) that mimics the Lofthouse Sugar Cookies (which both Will and I LOVE).  To cut out Spiderman head cookies I used an upside down Easter egg cookie cutter (pictured in a previous blog post) — clever, huh.

Lofthouse Style Frosted Sugar Cookies (from Authentic Suburban Gourmet)

Cookies:

6 cups all purpose flour
1 t. baking soda
1 t. baking powder
1 c. butter, at room temperature
2 c. granulated sugar
3 eggs
2 t. vanilla extract
1 1/2 c. sour cream

Frosting:

1 c. butter, room temperature
1 t. vanilla extract
4 c. powdered sugar
6 T. heavy cream
Several drops food coloring
Multi-colored Sprinkles

Directions:

In the bowl of a stand mixer with the flat beater attached, cream the butter and granulated sugar at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the eggs, one at a time beating until each is incorporated. Add the vanilla and sour cream and beat at low speed until combined.

Add the dry ingredients and beat at low speed until just combined, scraping down the bowl as needed. Dough will be a bit “sticky”. Divide dough into two sections. Flatten into rectangles about 1 1/2 inches thick, then wrap with plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator overnight or at least two hours until firm.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or spray them with nonstick cooking spray, set aside.

Use the plastic wrap that you chilled the dough in. Dust the top of the dough and then flip and flour the other side, keeping it on the plastic wrap. With a rolling pin, roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness. Using a 2 1/2-inch round cookie cutter, cut out circles and transfer to a baking sheet. Bake for 7 minutes, until pale golden. Immediately transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool. Best to work in small batches while keeping the remainder of the dough chilled.

To make the frosting, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and vanilla. Slowly beat in the powdered sugar. Once smooth and creamy, add in heavy cream, 1 tablespoon at a time until the desired spreading consistency is achieved. If desired, add food coloring and beat until combined.

Once cookies have cooled completely, frost and add sprinkles. Allow frosting to set, then store in an air-tight container. Let cookies sit for several hours before serving to allow the flavors to develop.

Makes approximately: 5 to 6 dozen cookies (will vary on the thickness of the dough)

On my first trial I used frosting to make the webbing on the face.  This looked great until the next day when the black frosting had bled into the red frosting.  Poor Spiderman didn’t look so good.  I then went on the search for cake decorating pens like Sugarbelle mentioned in her tutorial and found some at the local baking supply shop.

 

Here are the step-by-step instructions on how to make the webbing on Spiderman’s face.  Very simple when you see it one step at a time.

 

Here Will is pictured holding Trial #1 of the cookies using frosting, but it shows the eyes close up.  I used black frosting to outline the eye shape first and then filled it in with white frosting.

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CAKES!!!

I kept the cakes fairly simple this year after tackling Thomas last year!  I borrowed a Wilton Spiderman pan from my friend, Sandy.  After seeing the guest list I decided I needed more cake so I made a Spiderman head from a layered round cake.

I just followed the instructions to frost the cake from the Wilton pan.  It was pretty  easy although the design from the pan didn’t make a very clear impression on the cake, so I had to get a little creative.   I also had a little cake casualty when I removed it from the pan.  My advice, always wait until the cake has cooled before removing it from the pan.  I was able to piece it together and then make an emergency call to my mom and used her suggestion of freezing it together before frosting it.  It worked!

 The instructions suggested doing all the outlining before filling it in with red stars.  I tested it out first on one foot and I was surprised at how well that method worked (who am I to challenge Wilton, I guess).  The decorating went pretty smoothly and even resembled Spiderman when I was done!

 For the layer cake I baked two round cakes and then stacked them with frosting in between.  For the face pattern I just used the same method I had used to decorate the cookies.  It was super fast and easy!  There was even enough cake to go around!

I hope you have enjoyed seeing the process of creating a Spiderman party for my sweet Will!  I had so much fun and was exhausted following the party.  It was all worth it though!

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Spiderman Birthday Party ~ Part 2 ~ Decorations & Favors March 31, 2012

Filed under: Crafty Bits — tidbittimes @ 9:34 am
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I had so much fun creating all these fun decorations and favors for Will’s birthday party.  My Cricut machine sure got a workout like it has never had before.

I didn’t have a lot of decorations for the party, but when I saw these call-out signs on Jolly Mom, I had to give them a try!  There are printable templates available on Jolly Mom.  I decided to recreate them using my Cricut machine.  I found the call-out shape on the “Plantin’ Schoolbook” cartridge and the letters came from “Opposites Attract”.

I cut out the regular shape in various colored cardstock and then did the shadow image of the shape in black cardstock.  I did a coordinating color cardstock for the letters.

I added a wooden skewer to each sign so that they could be held by the kids in pictures or be stuck in buckets as part of the decorations.  This worked slick!  I taped the skewer to the black paper with scotch tape and then used adhesive to attached the colored piece on top.

I had each child pick a call-out sign to hold and took their picture in front of the cake table and the city background.  I later used these pictures as thank-you cards.  Here we see the cutie sisters, Bella and Sophia!  One day when I was shopping in the dollar section at Target, I found those cute little Spiderman pails.  I filled each pail with Will’s favorite kinds of candy (licorice, gummy worms, salt water taffy and fireballs -just had those on hand) and stuck a call-out sign in each of those.

Thanks to the Jolly Mom, again, we had these adorable no-sew superhero capes as party favors for all the kids.  A BIG THANK YOU goes out to my mom, mother-in-law and aunt-in-law for helping me with these capes.  We made about 20 capes in two hours one Sunday afternoon.  (and yes, I do realize that Spiderman doesn’t really have a cape, but just go with it for the party theme)

We started with two different colors of felt.  I can’t quite remember how much I bought.  It was probably 2-4 yards of each color.  We ended up with just about enough and some left over pieces.

When you visit Jolly Mom there is a printable pattern to use to cut out the capes.  We pinned the pattern to the folded felt and started cutting away!

From the scrap pieces we cut oval shapes and sewed them to the back of each cape.  Inside each oval we put the child’s initial that I freehand cut out of felt.  We used craft glue to glue the letters on.  Nancy sewed the ovals on to the capes and Pam ironed the capes and stuck velcro on the straps of the cape (using the self-stick velcro).

The capes didn’t seem like that big of a hit at the party, but several parents have told me they are a big hit at home.  Some kids even have slept in their superhero capes!  I wish I would have gotten a group picture of the kids in their capes, but with so many little ones it was just too hard to orchestrate it.

I wasn’t going to do any favors beside the superhero capes, but then I saw this pattern in the new Close To My Heart catalog and just HAD to make them!  I never got a picture of the favors with the goodies inside, but they had a twirly straw, Spiderman tattoos, Spiderman cookie and Pixie sticks.

I cut the fry boxes out on my Cricut using the CTMH “Art Philosophy” cartridge using the CTMH Superhero paper pack.  They were simple to cut and fold together.  To embellish them I cut the cityscape, call-out and “4” from the “Plantin Schoolbook” cartridge.  I found the Spiderman stickers at Wal-Mart.  These favors were a big hit!

 

Spiderman Birthday Party ~ Part 1 ~ Invitations March 22, 2012

Filed under: Crafty Bits — tidbittimes @ 9:12 am
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Image

 

Now that the madness of Will’s Spiderman 4th Birthday Party is over, I can finally take some time to post some of the fun I had planning his party.  It was a lot of work, but also so much fun!  Today we’ll start with the birthday invitations. 

Many of my ideas for his party came from Pintrest and The Party Wall (Amy Atlas).  Thank you for all the great ideas!  I really should not get consumed in all the blogs out there with so many fun ideas, but it is so much fun!

 

 

 First, I found a Spiderman head coloring page online.  I copied it on to red cardstock and cut them out.  I thought they were too blah, so I added some white glitter to the eyes to liven old Spidey up! 

 

 

On the back of Spiderman’s head is all the party information.  I wasn’t sure how to find cheap Spiderman comic books to just cut up.  Feeling sort of silly, I went to a local collectibles store and asked the nice young man at the counter what I was looking for.  I’m so glad I stopped there and asked because apparently they have boxes and boxes of old comics that are in poor condition that they sell for CHEAP!  I was able to find about 3-4 Spiderman comic books from the 80’s to cut apart for the invitations.  I traced the head shape (a little smaller) and cut the piece out from the Spiderman comics and used adhesive to glue them to the red cardstock.  Last, I printed the party information on vellum, traced the same shape I used for the comic book piece, cut them out and used vellum adhesive to attach them. 

 

 

Lucky for me the new Close to My Heart catalog had a new line of paper and stamps featuring superheroes!  I, of course, had to buy the paper and stamps.  Here is a peek at a couple of the stamps that I used on each envelope for the Spiderman invitations.  Stay tuned to see the fun paper when I show you what I did for favors! 

I thought these invitations turned out Spider-rific!  They weren’t too time-consuming either.

 

 

 
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