Create May 2019

Can you even believe that May is almost over? I know I can’t. It just flew right on by and almost completely got away from me. On that note, does anybody else feel like May is honestly almost as busy as Christmas? Because I do. Busy in a different kind of way, but still crazy busy. Either way, I was able to work on my #Create2019 project this month: Cake pops.

Guys, not to brag, but I make the best cake pops I’ve ever tasted. Blake and I keep trying others, and nothing else is quite as good. The problem? They never turn out pretty. So that was my goal for this month. Well, that and to try out some new flavor combos. And I am here to report that, while I’m still not 100% there yet, I have upped my cake pop game quite a bit this month. (Cue the party music).

Here are my best tips, in no particular order, for tasty (and semi-pretty) cakes pops:

  1. Start with Betty Crocker cake mix. It is honestly just the best. Some people swear by Aldi brand cake mix. It’s good, but I think Betty Crocker is the way to go. Wanna hit it out of the park? Buy the box of Party Rainbow Chip cake mix and the coordinating icing. You won’t regret it. I’ve gotten the most compliments on that specific kind.
  2. Get yourself some good quality melting wafers. Not baking chips. They simply don’t work as well. No, you need melting wafers. If you want a smooth coating, splurge a little bit. I recommend Ghirardelli brand. They taste super good, plus, they melt and coat beautifully. I do not recommend Wilton brand, for two reasons. 1. It doesn’t taste as good. 2. They don’t really melt much better than cheap baking chips. I also found a brand at Michael’s that was pretty good, Choco Maker. I like them because they have a variety of colors and flavors. Plus, melted fairly nicely, which was a bonus.
  3. Some tutorials instruct you to put your rolled cake balls into the freezer, and some instruct you to place them in the fridge. I’ve tried both, and I’m here to say that for me, it worked best to put them into our deep freezer.
  4. If at all possible, melt your wafers in a tall mug. This makes it easier to cover all of your cake pop. While dipping, I also found it easiest to pick up the mug and move it around until the cake pop was covered, instead of swirling the cake pop around in the chocolate (does that make sense?) Otherwise, I had a lot of cake pops fall off the stick. Still tasty, but technically no longer a cake pop.
  5. It helps to have some tiny helpers to mush up your baked cake and roll up the balls. Many hands make for quick work, and they can roll almost faster than I can scoop.

6. Speaking of scooping, it helps to use a scoop like the one sitting in that bowl. Mine is Pampered Chef. I believe it’s this one. That will give you nice, even sized cake pops.

7. It doesn’t hurt to have helpers sticking the sticks into the cake balls either. Just make sure they get them fairly centered, and don’t poke them all the way through.

8. If adding sprinkles to your cake pops, do so almost immediately after dipping, because that shell dries quickly.

9. One box of cake mix makes a heck of a lot of cake pops, so be prepared to share. I wonder if they freeze well? I’ll have to try that and report back.

10. Cake pops are fairly involved. I like to make the cake a day in advance, and then turn them into cake pops the following day. That helps to break it up a little. (Plus, cooling time takes foooorrrrreeeeevvvvveeeeeeerrrr and I’m just too darn impatient).

This time we made Chocolate Fudge cake mix with white chocolate coating and some with coffee coating. I prefer the coffee, the kids prefer the white chocolate (thank goodness, that means more for me!) Earlier in the month we made Party Rainbow Chip with white chocolate coating and some with dark chocolate coating. Time and again, the Party Rainbow Chip with white chocolate coating is my absolute fave. But let’s be honest, they’re all good. (Unless they’re made with the Wilton wafers, in which case I don’t care for them 😅). Now don’t mind me while I go come up with some names for these babies, and maybe eat one or two while I’m at it.

Create March/April 2019

March really got away from me, guys. While I did work on my #Create2019 series, I didn’t give it nearly the time or the effort that I wanted to. We had so much going on, and it is really hard to try and draw with a 13 month old wanting to sit on your lap every time you pull out the paper, pens, and colored pencils. It also just so happens that every time I pull out all of said things, the other 3 children want to join in on the activity. Not a bad thing, but it is terribly distracting. And, not to mention, after sitting at the kitchen table homeschooling for a good portion of the day, I really like to spend some of my time elsewhere in the house. 😅

In case you didn’t pick up on the large hint I just dropped (and the picture at the top of the post), my creative endeavor for this month was to get better at drawing. And believe you me, it won’t take much for me to improve, because drawing is not my strong suit. I did not inherit the amazing artistic skills of my 2 sisters. I’m creative in a lot of other ways, but drawing is not on my list of things that I’m good at.

That being said, I really, really enjoy doodling here and there. I have this book, How To Draw Modern Florals. I really like it, but it is a little more time consuming.

When I wanted to do something less heavy, I turned to Pinterest. There are some really fun/easy options for how to draw little doodles for bullet journals. These turned out to be my favorite.

Here’s my Pinterest board for all the tiny drawings if you want to check it out. Otherwise, you can search for whatever you want and 1,000 different things will pop up. These are the ones I was able to do.

Like I said, not much, and far from perfect. But I did learn a few things about myself. When I’m feeling short on time, and there are a lot of distractions, drawing really stresses me out. However, when the house is dark and quiet, and there are zero distractions, it has the opposite effect. I really enjoy it, and it’s a huge stress reliever. I guess there’s something to be said about the right place at the right time, huh?

Anyway, I’ve decided to stretch the whole drawing thing into April, because I didn’t get to spend near the time on this project as I would have liked. And while I was originally planning on doing something baking related, Blake and I are doing the 21 Day Fix this month, and what fun is practicing baking if you don’t get to eat it? So I’m pushing that back to another month. …Just don’t tell Autumn…because the things I want to bake are certainly not 21 Day Fix approved. 😂🍰(I would, right now, like to make the disclaimer that I am not a Beachbody coach, we are only participants, and I only mention it because it’s relevant to this specific month). 😅Hopefully later on in the month I can post some more pictures of some other drawings I’ve done. Hopefully. As always, thanks for coming along for the ride!