Claire's 3rd Birthday Party 065A few weekends ago we celebrated a very special little one’s birthday, and this was her birthday cake.  She couldn’t decide on chocolate cake or vanilla, so she got both!  My friend, Janna, suggested sandwiching the vanilla between two chocolate layers, and I think it turned out pretty nicely (see below)!

Claire's 3rd Birthday Party 175I just couldn’t resist giving this shot a retro feel – kind of makes me feel like it’s 1960 and I’m June Cleaver. . .sort of.  Raise your hand if you remember June wearing a pearl necklace?  I was kind of saying (to my husband) that I’m a lot like June Cleaver, and my husband said I was nothing like June Cleaver.  I challenged him to tell me in what way I’m not like June.  Then (because he’s obstinate) he challenged me to tell him what about me is like June, and well, I made a mental checklist.  It went something like this. . .

kisses husband upon arrival home. . .nope

house looks clean all the time. . .nope

reports to Ward, I mean the husband about the trouble the Beaver’s been in at school . . .nope

wears necklaces while vacuuming the floor. . .maybe once?

wears lipstick all the time. . .yes!  ha, ha – take that husband

Then I decided that I should probably have a more solid argument for my side in the future.

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This is the top of the cake, I just love the swirl pattern.

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Here I am holding the cake to give you an idea of how large it was.  I was hoping you could get an idea by looking at this photo, but have since decided that it either a. makes me look wide or b. makes the cake look small compared to how wide I am (hm, is that essentially the same argument?).

Anyhow, you’re just going to have to trust me – it’s a 3 layer, 12 inch cake and it’s super heavy.  It reminds me of those beautiful large cakes in Pollyanna that Cook was making for the bazaar.  That doesn’t date me, does it?

That super cute “celebrate” banner was purchased online at Lisa Leonard Designs.

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The kids and I ended up deciding on making an edible party favor, and dirt pudding was a natural fit.  We used  this recipe for the chocolate pudding, and we topped it with homemade chocolate shortbread cookies (that we ground up in the food processor), and the finishing touch was these edible chocolate rocks.  That cute “party favor” sign was my daughter’s doing – she came up with the design and executed it all by herself – I’m so proud of her.

For the pudding cups, next time I would use chalkboard vinyl (if I had any) because the chalkboard paint started to peel off a little from condensation when we were writing on it.  It ended up being okay, but I had to use plain old chalk instead of my chalk pen.

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Here’s a close up shot of the other pudding cups we ended up making with our silicone pots – aren’t those rocks cute?!

Claire's 3rd Birthday Party 085And here is the final table. . .not too shabby.  There are a few things that I would’ve changed (like elevating a few more things and leaving the condiment bottles out of the picture), but it was crazy because more dishes were added at the last minute because of extra food that I wasn’t expecting (but appreciated, brought by guests), and my husband who added two more items to the menu an hour before the party.  In the future I may just have a dessert table, that way no one will mess with it!

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Those brown paper bags in the back (were another great idea from my friend Janna!) were filled with Tostitos for the Super Bowl Dip (seated next to the buns).  But the biggest (surprise) hit were the fresh blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries.  Another thanks to Janna for suggesting I serve a fruit dip (sweetened whip cream) with all those beautiful berries.

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