Monday, January 20, 2014

Western Baby Shower

I so wish I would have gotten more pictures of this shower, but after dropping the little one off at Grammy's and stopping at the store for fresh fruit, I had only a few minutes to snap these pics and get the food set out.
I have to give a huge thanks to my husband who cleaned the apartment while I was gone, it looked great and there's no way I would have had time to do it before guests arrived.

 I lucked out with some of the decorations because my sister is getting married in August and is doing a country theme.  She provided me with the burlap table runners I used as the backdrop behind the table.  I just used tacks to hang them side by side.  The onesie bunting I adored.  I used scrapbook paper I found at Hobby Lobby in 4 various prints, denim, red paisley, blue paisley, and blue plaid.  I attached them to twine with tape and draped them.  
The Name canvas was very popular and Audra (the guest of honor) loved it and took it home to hang in her nursery.  I explain in this post how I made the canvas.
I also had 6 mini tissue poms hanging from the ceiling in red, blue, and brown.
 I made butter cookies.  My mom and I are famous in our family for them.  I tried like everything to get the icing color to be a Christmas red and after using half the little jar of Wilton red food coloring I gave up and settled on the above orangey color, tied the favor bags with twine, and called it a night.  I love the onesie cookie cutter I found in Amish country last year and used it at the "About to Pop" shower I hosted last Spring.  After I snapped the above photo I found a cute wicker basket to put these in so they weren't just thrown all over the table.
My cousin loved the ultrasound picture and was so happy to have a 4x6 snapshot of it.  Everyone else was excited to look at it too as most of them had never seen it.

I made lemon blueberry cupcakes which turned out delish.  It's a combo I've never made in cupcakes before and everyone said they were so good except my aunt who hates blueberries, haha.  I used the recipe from here as a base.  It originally came from the book by the girls of DC Cupcakes.  I changed it up some though. Check out the bottom of this post for the recipe I used.  The cupcake pics were made using burlap printed scrapbook paper and a monogram "R" printed on white card stock.  I used my cricut to cut the circles of both and attached them with glue dots.  Then taped them to mini skewers.
I told how I made the wreath in this post.  I ended up adding a mini pennant banner I made with my cricut and leftover scrapbook paper.  The crate I used as a prop I already had in my house and I think it added just the right touch to elevate the cupcakes and house the quote I framed.

I kept the food simple, wish I had a picture of it all set up but no such luck, so I'll share the recipes and the sites I got them from or got inspiration from instead.


*Ham and Swiss cheese sliders
Homemade Salsa and tortilla chips
Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad (boxed mix I already had in pantry)
Apples and Strawberry slices
*Deviled Eggs
*Strawberry Lemonade
Sweet Tea
Ice Water
*Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes
Frosted Butter Cookies 

*recipes below

Baked Ham and Cheese Sliders

24 slider buns
16oz thinly sliced deli ham
16 slices swiss cheese (you will have leftover)
4 1/2T dijon Mustard
1 1/2 medium chopped onion
1 1/2T Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 sticks butter/margarine 
The ham and cheese sliders got rave reviews, and I had to agree with my guests, they were quite tasty.  I will definitely be making them again.  They were so easy and since all my other food could be made the day before these were simple to put together and they were the only thing I had to pop in the oven before guests arrived. I found the original recipe online and for the life of me I can't find the website I got it from, oops.  This is why I should write things down.

I've noticed recently that everyone has a different way of making deviled eggs.  I've seen people add vinegar and pickles and that just grosses me out, why do you need such things in deviled eggs? For years it never occurred to make them any way other than how my mom taught me and I've found her way is the easiest of them all so I thought I'd share.  Her recipe calls for all of 3 ingredients, boiled eggs, mustard, and mayo.  I've made them so many times I don't measure anything.  I go more on consistency and taste than measurements.

Deviled Eggs

1 dozen eggs (boiled)
about 3/4c mayo
about 1/3c mustard

I boil my eggs for 5 minutes at a rolling boil, turn the heat off and let them sit in the covered pot on the stove for about an hour.  Then I put them in the fridge to cool before I peel them.  Once they are cooled, peel the shell off each egg and cut them in half lengthwise.  Separate the yolks from the whites of the eggs and put in a small mixing bowl.  Once all the yolks are in the bowl mash them up with a fork until they are good and crumbly.  Add your mayo and mustard and stir until combined.  Take a small spoon and fill each egg white with some of your yolk mixture.  Remember you can add more or less mayo and mustard depending on your taste buds, again I don't measure I go off consistency and taste.  Don't be scared you can do it!

Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes 

2 1/2c flour sifted
2 1/2t baking powder
1/4t salt
8T unsalted butter-room temp
1 1/2c sugar (original recipe calls for 1 3/4c)
2 eggs-room temp
2 1/4t vanilla
1 1/4c milk-room temp
zest of 2 lemons
1/2-1tsp lemon extract depending on your taste buds
1 1/2c blueberries
1/2T flour (to coat blueberries and keep them from sinking during baking)

sift flour, baking powder, and salt.  Measure sugar in a bowl, add zest and rub together with fingers.  Cream butter and lemony sugar.  Add eggs 1 at a time, mixing between each addition.  Add vanilla to milk.  Add 1/3 of dry ingredients, then 1/3 of milk/vanilla mixture.  Continue until all dry ingredients and milk mixture is used.  Add lemon extract, mix.  Fold in blueberries.  Bake at 350 for 15-18 minutes

Strawberry Lemonade 

1 gallon water
3 lemons-wedged and seeded
1 1/2c sugar
1/2lb strawberries fresh or frozen

combine all in a pitcher and mix until sugar is dissolved.  I try to stock up on strawberries during the summer and freeze quite a few quart size bags just for this lemonade.   When I use frozen berries I don't even thaw them I just throw them in and they double as ice.  This is seriously good and addicting lemonade.  I started making it for every shower and birthday party I do instead of buying sodas and I've never had anyone complain.  My one piece of advice, If you're shower is going to have more than 10 people I'd advise making more than 1 gallon because you will run out.  Yes it's that good!

I am so glad this shower is done.  I had a blast making everything and brainstorming ideas and of course the best part is always seeing the guest of honors face when she walks in but the last minute frantic rush always exhausts me.  Now, as always, I'm looking ahead to my next line up of projects.  What are they you may be asking yourself
1. Baby goodies- hooded towels, 1 yard receiving blankets, hospital gown, binky clips, nursing cover
2. Valentine's Day
3. Easter
4. My neice's Dora the Explorer 3rd birthday party
5. My sister's Bridal  shower- this one's gonna be a big one, the biggest party/shower I've done since my own wedding.  I'm excited but nervous all the same.  It's going to be a lot of crafting, a lot of prep, and everything will have to be transported to another location since it will be for all 4 sides of the family.  All that with a 3 year old and an infant to take care of, I'm already tired thinking about it.

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