Monday, May 21, 2012

Will Run OFF Cupcakes

Hey ya'll! Long time without a post (okay only a week really) but I've been super busy! No specialty cupcakes last week, but I did make something extremely fun & cupcake related -- a cupcake cake! Mikey, my adorable boy toy, is celebrating his 22nd birthday today (HAPPY BIRTHDAY BOO!) so his mom had a party at their house Friday night with all of the family and friends. I offered to bake his cake since I'm "obsessed," according to Michael. I have been eyeing a golf course cake on Pinterest for quite some time and figured now was as good a time as any to finally make it! I had some help from my bff Kristen who was so kind to make a Micheal's run with me and Bo's run for me, as well as baking the cupcakes and icing them.

It really was a lot easier than I expected except for a few malfunctions that were my fault. I was short a decorating bag and the only one I had was cut much wider for my big cupcake tips so my tiny little grass tip wouldn't fit. :( So about 3 ziploc bags later, the cake was finally piped. I started with basic yellow cupcakes from a box mix and added a little pudding mix to moisten them up and topped them with a homemade buttercream. After my last buttercream fail, I've spent my days scouring blogs for the perfect recipe that would be successful. One such blog, I can't remember which one, gave you the ingredients, but no measurements because she said that the perfect buttercream couldn't be measured -- and she was right! After a lot of adding and tasting, I finally achieved a perfect icing using salted butter, shortening, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. The shortening makes all the difference if you ask me. Throw in some green food coloring and you've got yourself the perfect grass color, ready to be piped!

I arranged the cupcakes how I wanted them in a golf course shape (I called it Hole 22) and then covered them all in a green base icing. Then I piped on grass using a Wilton #233 tip. This was new for me but is super easy once you get the hang of it and it really doesn't take long at all. I left a space for the "green" and a sand trap, which I made out of graham cracker crumbs, added a marshmallow golf ball and a flag made from a coffee stirrer and paper. I customized the flag using your basic Paint software. I copy and pasted a black checkered image and wrote "Happy Birthday Michael" on it with a 22 in the middle. I was super proud of this cake and the family loved it. I think it really surprised Michael and he talked about it all weekend.

Now, how did I spend my weekend you ask? Oh, just ran a half-marathon, that's all! I ran the North Myrtle Beach Diva Half-Marathon Sunday and it was a blast! I had some lovely Diva's that ran with me including my sister Lindsay, Michael's mom Wendy, my best friend Hayley and her mom Sharon. My mom also went and did the 5k. She ran the Rock 'N' Roll Half-Marathon in Savannah, GA last November so she decided to play chauffeur and cheerleader for this one. Lindsay and I were the only two that had run a half before so nerves were high Saturday and Sunday, but as expected they all did great! I finished in 2 hours 12 minutes and 28 seconds which was almost 30 minutes faster than my last half so I was happy about that. Lindsay and Sharon finished around 2:50 with Wendy right on their heels. Hayley finished next and had an awesome time considering she didn't train due to softball! We were given boas & tiaras as we neared Mile 13 and our medals were put on by none other than shirtless firemen and knights in shining armor from Medieval Times! We finished up our day with pizza, Dairy Queen, and some sunshine on the Myrtle Beach strand. It was such a great weekend and we're already planning our next one! I couldn't help but thinking while I was running how blessed we all are to have the health and endurance to run such a long race and the support of each other as we did it.

So here's your first taste of how I balance this lifestyle. Now I'm going to go collapse on the couch and rest my sore muscles until the birthday boy gets off of work! I plan to bake again later this week so be on the lookout for a new post!


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