I love a good DIY project and decorating cakes is a hobby that makes me happy so putting those together is fun for me!
About half way through the mess of baking, I tend to remember that Costco and Sam’s both sell 1/2 sheet cakes for less than $20.
But, alas, my kids like for me to bake and decorate their birthday cakes and that makes me happy. It is a labor of love and actually quite fun to see their ideas come to life! The delight that they get from them is worth every minute. They really are truly excited and appreciative.
For this year, my twins asked for two totally different cake styles. Apparently when you turn eight, it is no longer cool to share a theme. My cat lover wanted a cake with “tangled up cats.” My horse lover wanted a pasture scene with horses.
Although I have an excellent home made white cake recipe, I went straight to Wal-Mart to aisle 9 and picked up my favorite boxed white cake mix. You just cannot go wrong with this one!
For the chocolate cake, I used this devil’s food mix. I am not a chocolate lover but apparently it is yummy.
I only have one set of round pans and one rectangular cake pan, so I helped the girls to decide that is just what we needed to have the perfect cakes. The power of persuasion was strong.
So, after a morning of baking, cooking, and leveling the cakes, we were ready!
I used a basic Wilton frosting recipe for the white cake and this chocolate buttercream recipe for the other. It is the best chocolate one that I’ve tried. Yummm!
My cat lover is also a foodie. She loved the strawberry cream cheese filling that I had used on her daddy’s birthday cake so she requested it for her own. It is really, really good and takes a cake from basic to amazing.
I let the girls choose a set of Toobs to use for the figures on their cakes. This was like a little gift before the birthday and they put A LOT of thought into just which ones to get.
You really can’t go wrong with “tangled up cats.” This was super easy to decorate. To make the yarn balls, I covered a bouncy ball and a marble with icing. This worked well but kept me on my toes at the party to make sure that they got removed before becoming a choking hazard!
It was a bit more fun to decorate the horse cake. I would have really liked to add a fence (my idea was to use pretzels and icing) but she insisted that her horses were free roaming. 😉
Overall, we had a really good time with these. It was worth the effort and I felt a bit like superwoman as they oooohed and aaahhhed over the results!
They are already planning for next year!