Cortisone Injection + Cake Decorating = No Fun

I don't like needles 😦

I don’t like needles, never have. It’s amazing I have tattoos considering my fear of needles. I literally have to force myself out the door to have a blood test, or immunisation. So I really wasn’t going to enjoy the whole prospect of having a cortisone shot in my shoulder.

I had organised a good friend to take me to the hospital and to make sure that I stayed! The Doctor who did the injection also treats the Hawthorn AFL team, so he comes highly recommended. This still didn’t make me feel any better about an ultrasound guided injection.

I am looking forward to after the procedure, I am looking forward to make/decorating cakes without pain. I use to tread kneading of fondant or chocolate, as the pain afterwards would be that intense, that I couldn’t hold my daughters hand.

Having my friend with me really helped take my mind of the up coming procedure and I am very grateful that I didn’t have to go on my own. The nurse and doctor were fantastic and it was a lot quicker than I had anticipated. The part that made me feel a little yuk, was when the nurse said I could look at the ultrasound, and see the needle – there is some things I don’t need to see.  My arm now aches around the injection site, and it feels a little heavy.

In the words of the nurse “no cutting the lawn,or chopping wood, in a couple of days you should start to feel the benefit of the cortisone.” Which is what I am looking forward to the most – no shoulder pain 🙂

Post A Day 2012

I decided a couple of days a go, to join the ‘Post A Day 2012,’ challenge.

I am not sure why I wanted to do this, but I figure that if I can write a diary everyday, and have done for a number of years, then I can write a blog everyday. How hard can it be? Lol.

I missed the first month, as I hadn’t started Hollipops Cakes at that stage, but since joining the challenge I have written everyday. In fact I will make up the days that I missed over the course of the year so that I end up with 365 entries.

I wish myself good luck 🙂

How To Decorate On A Hot Day??

Today is a warm day – it will get to 33C/91F, and this is great if you want to catch a bit of sun to improve those vitamin D levels. However when you  have cakes to decorate this can be a bit of a challenge. Especially when inside the house can get to 30C/86F.

I don’t have the luxury of air conditioning, so we deal with the heat with a small portable air con unit and fans in each room of the house. Again this is fine when it’s just the family, but when I work with chocolate that likes to be kept cool, then this is where problems arise.

I know that at some stage I will have to wake up earlier, so that I can work when the house is cooler, but that isn’t always the case in Australia especially on those 40C/104F days, when the house never seems to cool down.

I also position the fans where I am working to keep the area cool. At Christmas I made a cake that every piece of chocolate I worked with, got shaped and then put back in the fridge, before working on the next bit.

On the ‘Links,’ page I have found 2 recipes from Wilton that are designed for high humidity days.

Of course when I get my bakery I will have AC installed, then the issue won’t be as bad, but what can I do that I’m not already doing at home??

So if you have any tips, drop me a line in the comments. All tips will be greatly received.

Just a quick note on the wedding, I got to take my Mum & daughter to the dress shop this morning, where I got to try my gorgeous dress. What a wonderful way to start the day.

Happy Valentine’s Day

My day turned out pretty well – I made some yummy cupcakes (but haven’t decorated them yet). My girls made me some art and my husband asked me if I would marry him again. Considering that we are all ready organizing our renewal of our vows for next year it comes as no surprise, but the thought was there on this most romantic day of the year.

Talking of the wedding, tomorrow I get to take my mother down the wedding dress shop to try some beautiful gowns on, and I have settled on the idea of how I want my cake to look. Due to the fact that it is me making the cake, I can make it as grand as I want because apart from the cost of ingredients I won’t be charging myself to make it. So my cake is going to be about 5-6 tiers high, and white fondant, with some really pretty decoration, which I don’t want to give to much away, as this would spoil the surprise for everyone, but needless to say it fits in with the theme of the day.

All I will say is that it will be an elegant garden wedding, with all ladies in evening dresses, as I view this as if I get to dress up in a beautiful dress, then all the ladies should be able to.

We will be taking our vows under a old oak tree – which I find very symbolic.

Well on that note – with the smell of cupcakes ready to be decorated I must be off. I hope that everyone out there had a wonderful day.

What to do for Valentine’s Day?

It’s no secret who my Valentine is as I’ve been married to him for nearly 9 years. However there won’t be any romance tomorrow night as my husband is currently working away. And with a child who is not feeling her best, I feel tomorrow night will be long for all the wrong reasons and a lot less fun.

So today and tomorrow I will be making a Valentines Cake made for 2 – I’ll just have to force myself to eat his share :

For the most romantic night of the year, the recipe could be either

  • Chocolate – as this contains both a sedative which relaxes and lowers inhibitions and a stimulant to increase activity and the desire for physical contact.

OR

  • Banana, not only due not only to its shape, but also its creamy, lush texture, some studies show its enzyme bromelain enhances male performance.

If you want a really good night then you could combine both.

I think I will make it chocolate, and then wrap the cake in a thin layer of pure chocolate and a delicate chocolate decoration on top.

So tomorrow night, get a babysitter in and have the night to yourselves, or put the kids to bed early, curl up together, have a glass of champagne – the drink of love, or a glass wine, have some chocolate and not forgetting the bananas, and have a really lovely evening.

What shall I do?? I’ll open my card that my husband posted a week ago, watch a good movie while eating my Valentine’s Day Cake for 2.

Birthday Party

© Hollipops Cakes 2012 - 9th Birthday Cake

I made a cake today for a lovely girl who has just turned 9. My daughters were invited to the party so the whole family had a good day with food, drink, fun and plenty of laughter.

This cake is fairly simplistic, with a chocolate sponge, vanilla buttercream filling and the outside is all chocolate well except the silver balls. I have never worked with chocolate to cover such a large cake, most of my chocolate work has been on a smaller scale i.e. roses, fans and other flowers.

Being the perfectionist that I am, there is more work I need to do to perfect the method, but really enjoyed the challenge. The birthday girl was very pleased as it was her who chose the design and specifically asked for the colours and silver balls.

My next mini project is a few Valentines designs that I will be baking and decorating tomorrow – but they are just for fun, or shall I share???

Stones Throw

Stones Throw Cottage is located a stone’s throw from Sherbrooke Forest, the Dandenong Ranges National Park, and Puffing Billy steam train.

Come and enjoy the tranquillity and solitude of our private self-contained cottage or the comfort of our private suite, accessed via your own front door.

The cottage features include, a cosy open plan living/bedroom area with a free standing gas log fire, ensuite bathroom and kitchenette.

Double French doors open out to a spacious deck, private garden and visiting cockatoos, king parrots, rosellas and kookaburras.

Near all that the Dandenong Ranges has to offer and still only 60 minutes by train from Flinders St Station in Melbourne.