Baking Up a Storm Pt. 2

Here are the next 10 cakes I made.

New Year’s Neapolitan Cake. Two layers of white chocolate, two layers of dark chocolate, strawberry preserve filling topped with vanilla meringue buttercream, chocolate ganache drip, and chocolate-covered strawberries.
Chocolate spice cake with cardamom buttercream rosette cake. This was one of my favorite flavor combos.
My first “naked” cake was a 6-layer chocolate stout cake frosted with Raspberry cream cheese/Swiss meringue buttercream and then topped with dark and white chocolate bark (sprinkled with freeze-dried raspberries and pretzel bits) and fresh raspberries! (Not happy with the naked part, but it was a first effort).
Lemony carrot cake with daffodils (I wrapped the based in plastic) and a spun sugar nest on top.
Lemon thyme cake brushed with thyme syrup, filled with lemon curd cream and frosted with a “rustic” ombré Swiss meringue buttercream (by rustic, I mean “poorly executed ombré” and “roughly frosted” smooth).
Simpsons-inspired Donut Cake
S’mores cake: cinnamon buttermilk cake, milk chocolate fudge frosting between layers, and toasted meringue frosting.
Purple layer cake with pitch-black frosting and crazy sprinkles
White birch “bark” cake with a diorama on top. Gingerbread cake with espresso frosting.
When I’m not baking cakes, I’m working on cookies. These are wookie cookies.

Baking Up A Storm Pt. 1

I’ve been baking like a crazy person for the last year. I had barely baked anything previously, which is weird! But I thought it would be cool to round up all my cakes of the past year-plus to show off my skillz (which are beginner at best but I’m still proud).

Here’s the first 10:

Blueberry Jam Cake. My first big effort and it featured ombre frosting and homemade blueberry jam filling.
Lemon cake with homemade lemon curd, homemade candied lemons and white chocolate shavings.
Chocolate Flower Cake with candy melt flower petals.
Sprinkle cake with sprinkle frosting. Not my finest offering.
German-style Black Forest Cake
Lady cake for Election Day.
The Birds red velvet cake.
Spice cake with maple frosting and crazy candy melt tree.
Chocolate cake with chocolate frosting and a poinsettia candy melt flower on top.
Chocolate cake with buttercream frosting and a little ring of raspberries on top.

New sofas!

New sofas in the living room (ignore the extra table against the windows as I was excited to share and Dale hasn’t dismantled that table yet because it’s probably moving into the family room and that new sofa doesn’t arrive until tomorrow). We went on a sofa-buying frenzy and it no longer feels like a college apartment! Yay!

from Rebecca’s Instagram

Putting in Sod in the Front Yard

[written by Dale]

Today we, Yes WE, put in some sod.

While I did most of the more physical stuff. Rebecca did the refinement.

For the sod to be level with the existing grass and lower I surrounding area and cut sharp lines for the edges to meet up. As I cut it away it loosened dirt and stones – a shit load of stones – Rebecca raked it into the drive. I then hauled fresh dirt from the composter to make a good bed for the sod.
Before:
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I dumped the fresh dirt and Rebecca raked it out. I tossed a bit of fertilizer down before laying the sod.
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Rebecca, super hard at work.
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This is how it came out. The darkened areas is the dirt from the compost. We filled the seams between the rolls of sod then seeded them. The goal was to minimize exposed edges thus holding in moisture as well as maybe getting some grass to grow. Some other areas where just too small for sod so we filled them with fresh dirt and seeded the hell out of that too.
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I also installed a fresh drain grate after the sidewalk along the house, I hope it will catch the water and send in through the pipe to the drive. When we watered I notice water slipping through the crack between the walk and grate – I have since caulked that joint.
And another view:

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In all it took about 5-6 hours to complete. I would never have finished it on my own.