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Party Details!

23 Jan

We had some people ask about our decorations and food for our very hungry caterpillar party, so here are the details! Leave me a comment with any additional questions and I would be happy to respond! We had so much fun decorating this party around such an awesome book! Enjoy!

Caterpillar Balloon from Jeannie's Let's Celebrate (w/ picture slideshow on our TV)

Very Hungry Caterpillar mini cupcakes using this recipe & some food dye!

Caterpillar Cupcakes

Eric Carle Garland from Amazon

Photo Garland with Monthly Pictures (I hung the pictures with clothespins and then put a sticker with the corresponding month on them!)

Close up of photo garland!

I covered the boxes that the silverware came in the Eric Carle dot print from the book!

The Spread

Underneath the food, I wrote the text of the book. First up with Deviled eggs with "One Sunday morning the warm sun came up and -pop- out of the egg came a tiny and very hungry caterpillar. He started to look for some food"

Continuing on "On Monday he ate through one apple, but he was still hungry. On Tuesday he ate through two pears,but he was still hungry.."

"On Wednesday he ate through three plums but he was still hungry, On Thursday he ate through four strawberries but he was still hungry, On Friday he ate through five oranges but he was still hungry."

We got creative with Saturday and this is where we did the bulk of the meal, and put "On Saturday he ate through one piece of chocolate {chip cookie} cake, one cheese stick, one stuffed shell , one slice of swiss cheese,one slice of salami, one piece of pizza bread and one cupcake, that night he had a stomachache. "

We finished with a mini salad bar my Mom made. This was perfect as a few of our guests have various food allergies, so this ensured everyone could eat a little something! "The next day was Sunday again and the caterpillar ate through one nice green leaf and after that he felt much better."

On the side table when you walked in, there was a Very Hungry Caterpillar book for people to sign and photo strips of some of Ethan's instagram prints to take home! Edith Drew designed these for me on photoshop!

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Happy New Year {Marco Island Style}

31 Dec

The Lewis Family would like to wish everyone a happy, healthy and safe new year! We are celebrating in Marco Island and rang in the new year at Sal E Pepe, Italy style, at 6pm est. we had a lovely day, starting with breakfast at the red rooster, some good naps, pool time, and a lovely dinner out! Here are some pictures from today!

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hanging out on the balcony

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Ready for the pool

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family shot

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so big!

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takes every opportunity to climb stairs

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obligatory balcony shot

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Our Weekend

7 Nov

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swimming lessons with Dana!

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new products at trader Joe’s

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baking

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more baking

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cousins fun!

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kitchen helper

Banana Cupcakes with Dark Chocolate Frosting

19 Oct

What do you do when you have bananas that have turned brown? Make a banana dessert! I am planning on making Ethan’s first birthday cake, and my favorite cake in the world is Three Tarts Bakery Banana Cake, so I can only assume Ethan will love it too (we already share the same negative sentiment about cheese).

I tried out a new recipe this week that I found on Yahoo Answers to be modeled after Sprinkles Banana Cupcakes (My fav cupcake, which my mother-in-law and sister-in-law brought to me right after I gave birth to Ethan) and made some tweaks and the end result was yum!

Cupcakes:
2 bananas, mashed {next time I may use 3}
1 stick butter
1 C sugar
2 eggs
2 C flour, sifted
1 t baking soda
1/2 C plain yogurt {The recipes I found online called for sour cream, but I used the whole milk plain yogurt we had on hand to feed E}
1 t vanilla

Creambutter and sugar. Add eggs and keep mixing. Add yogurt, flour, and baking soda; mix. Add vanilla and bananas; mix. Bake 20 minutes at 350 degrees.

{Yields 24 mini cupcakes, 1 large cupcake}

Frosting {Recipe from a prepacked Sprinkles cupcake mix box}

1 1/2 stk unsalted butter, firm but not cold
large pinch of salt
2 1/2 c confectioners’ sugar, sifted {I never sift}
1/4 tsp vanilla
3 oz bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled to room temperature {Have also used a dark chocolate bar in a pinch}

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the butter and salt of medium speed until light and fluffy, 2 minutes. Reduce the speed to low, gradually add the confectioners sugar and beat until incorporated. Add the vanilla and beat until smooth and creamy. stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the chocolate and beat on medium speed until incorporated, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Do not over mix or the frosting will incorporate too much air; it should be creamy and dense, like ice cream. Add milk, 1 T at a time if frosting does not have spreadable consistency.

The result is pure delicious-ness! I think the pinch of salt makes all the difference in the frosting. I usually use sea salt and have had a lot of compliments on them!

Homemade Soft Pretzels

10 Oct Finished Product

After some egging on by Alex, I took the opportunity on Sunday to make these delicious soft pretzels. They are very similar to my “go to” recipe,  but what stood out the most is that I let these rise for almost three hours and as Ellie suggested — they taste light, airy, and heavenly! I made the dough while Ethan went down for his afternoon nap, then while the dough was rising, I took a nap myself, cleaned the kitchen and then took a family afternoon trip to the park. I got back to the dough about three hours later and the result was dance in my mouth amazing. My new favorite for sure. I had a few slight modifications — I used 1 1/2 cups of warm water for the dough, and I baked them on pizza stones rather than a baking sheet to get the crispy bottom! Definitely worth making!

See the photos below:

Finished Product

Finished Product

Ingredients

Bubbling Yeast

Dough ready to be made into pretzels

Slight Modification: I always bake my pretzel-related items on a pizza stone for a crisp bottom!

Rising up!