My good friend Heather Alexander of The Mommyhood blog has written a brand new book for first time moms – and I’m giving away two copies!
Now, I know this book is for new moms but even as someone who doesn’t have children I learned some valuable lessons just by glancing through the preview.
When a relative comes to your book signing with her new baby you shouldn’t play patty-cake after shaking hands with 75 people. Turns out, babies love to stick their hands in their mouths.
(Leslie, I’m sorry for germing up your baby.)
In my defense she was really cute and I couldn’t help myself. But I know better now.
A little more about the book!
Secrets of The Mommyhood
In a perfect world, an experienced mom would sit down and tell a first-time mom everything she needs to know. But the reality is, most moms with young kids are too busy wiping noses and bottoms to stop and give them the download. Secrets of The Mommyhood is the pregnancy book every first-time mom should read to learn about pregnancy, childbirth and having a baby.
The book blends practical advice with laugh-out-loud humor, and it will help a first-time mom:
- Learn what actually happens during childbirth;
- Pack the right things in her hospital bag;
- Choose baby gear she will use and avoid spending money on things she won’t;
- Deal with unsolicited advice from random idiots;
- Know what to look for when evaluating pediatrician and childcare options;
- Get a heads up on common illnesses no one bothers to mention;
- Avoid supermoms and look for super moms; and,
- Learn the only thing that really matters.
Where to Get the Book
About the Author
Heather Alexander is a married mother of two, who lives in Knoxville, Tennessee. Her special gifts from Jesus include catching the flesh of her upper arm on the doorjamb as she passes through it and taking the garbage cans out to the street only to hit them with her car on the way out of the driveway. She shares tips, solutions and humor on her blog TheMommyhood.com and writes a column with tips for moms in the Knoxville News Sentinel.
View a sneak peek of the book here!
(Email subscribers may need to visit SprinkleBakes for the entry form.)
Okay, now let’s talk about this cake!
First of all, I’ve been dying to make these little fondant baby booties, but I just wasn’t crazy about the idea of buying another tool to have to store in my already overstuffed decorator box. I’m sharing my homemade template that I made out of copy paper, (below) and you know what? The booties turned out just as cute. I made a fondant button with a #5 decorator tip to up the cute factor even more.
The frosting and cake layers are all brightly flavored with lemon. Happy occasions call for happy flavors!
Lemon Baby Shower Cake
Yield: One 6.5-inch triple layer cake or one 9-inch double layer cake
1/4 pound (1 stick) butter, softened
1 ¾ cups sugar
3 eggs, at room temperature
1/2 tablespoon lemon extract
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups whole milk, at room temperature
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease the bottom and sides of
three 7-inch springform pans (if you don’t have 3, you can reuse the ones you have).
Line the bottom and sides with parchment paper, and then grease the paper.
- In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle
attachment, cream the butter and sugar together.
- Add the eggs, lemon extract and lemon juice. Beat until combined.
- Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt and add to the
mixer bowl in three batches, alternating with the milk and beginning and ending
with the flour mixture. Scrape down the bowl and beat on high speed for 3
- Divide the batter evenly into pans, or if reusing a pan,
fill each pan two-thirds full.
- Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out
clean when inserted into the middle of the cakes.
- Let the cakes cool slightly in the pans. Remove and let
them cool completely on a wire rack.
1¼ cups granulated sugar
1 cup water
2 teaspoons lemon extract
- While the cake is baking, place the sugar and water in a
medium saucepan over medium heat. Heat until sugar granules have dissolved.
- Increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil.
- Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
- Add the lemon extract.
- Use as soon as the syrup is lukewarm or store in the
refrigerator until needed.
- Apply cooled syrup to the tops of cakes with a large
pastry brush, being careful not to tear the cake, until the cake is well
moistened but not soggy. Proceed with
icing the cake.
Note: Increase this recipe by ¼ if making a 9-inch
double layer cake.
1 1/2 cups of unsalted butter, softened
3 cups confectioners’ sugar – the finest you can find
1 tsp. clear lemon
1 drop sky blue Americolor gel food coloring
1 drop liquid green food coloring
* Milk or heavy cream, optional
- In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, mix
together the butter and confectioners’ sugar.
Begin mixing on low speed until crumbly, and then increase to high and
beat for 3 minutes.
- Add lemon extract and beat again for another minute until light
and fluffy. Add food colorings and mix
until a consistent blue-green color is achieved.
- *Note: If you find the buttercream is too stiff, you may
add milk or heavy cream 1 tablespoon at a time until the mixture is spreading
- Frost and stack cakes on a cake stand or serving platter.
Cover with a thin crumb coat of icing. Refrigerate cake until icing is well
- Frost cake with an off-set spatula.
Pink 2.5-inch wide ribbon
3.5-inch greaseproof doily (larger can be used if making
the 9-inch cake)
Edible (sugar) pearls (see source for pearls in “Supplies”)
Fondant baby booties (see below for instructions and
- Cut a piece of wax paper the same thickness and length of
the ribbon. Apply the wax paper to the
bottom edge of the frosted cake. It
should naturally adhere. (The wax paper
will prevent the ribbon from becoming spotty and greasy). Apply ribbon over wax paper and adhere with a
small dot of icing at what you choose to be the back of the cake.
- Place pearls consecutively around the top edge of the
cake, gently press them into the icing to adhere. Center the doily on top of the cake and
arrange the baby booties on the doily.
Fondant Baby Booties:
Click here for template, then “save as” an image file on your computer for printing.
2/3 cup ready made white rolled fondant
#5 Wilton piping tip (see supplies for source)
Soft paint brush
Plastic drinking straw
Two small lengths of 1/4″ white ribbon
- Cut out template shapes. Roll white fondant on a cutting board or other durable work surface that has been lightly dusted with powdered sugar. Place templates over fondant and cut two of each piece with the Xacto knife. Cut two holes in the long heel piece with a drinking straw where indicated.
- Lay the oval “sole” piece flat and coat edges with corn syrup.
- Place the rounded part of the toe piece around the corn syrup coated edge of the sole – the tab should be sticking up as the tongue of the shoe.
- Coat the inside flat edge of the heel piece with corn syrup. Dab a little corn syrup under each hole. Stand heel piece upright (lace holes pointing up) and wrap around the assembled toe/sole piece. Hold for a minute or two to adhere. Repeat with other fondant pieces to create the other bootie.
- Cut two rounds with the wide end of the #5 decorator tip. These will be the “buttons”. Use the small end to make two or four button holes.
- Loop the small length of ribbon through the lace holes and snip excess. Apply corn syrup the the ribbon and hold against the fondant until it sticks. Coat one side of a button with corn syrup and place over the ribbon ends. Hold until the button is secure. Repeat with remaining bootie.
- Use a tooth pick to make small stitch marks around the edges of the bootie. Leave booties to dry in a cool dry place. Arrange on top of cake as instructed in the cake assembly section.