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Visits, Parties and Birthdays

April 29, 2013

The last week has been a really good one!

My brother Pate and his girlfriend Emma flew in from Canmore two Friday’s ago and stayed for 10 days, flying home today.

It was fun having them home for so long, usually it’s just a couple of days and they’re so busy you hardly see them! This time they were able to come stay with Cobi and me in the city for a day and do touristy Toronto things. They drove in Wednesday afternoon and we had dinner at Tabülè, a really good Middle Eastern restaurant on Yonge south of Eglinton.

 

Waterfront

The next day I suggested they take the subway down to the waterfront and walk along the docks, then up through Kensington with a stop at Sanagan’s Meat Locker for lunch, finishing off in Yorkville for Ice Cream. While they were enjoying Toronto Pot Hole at Summer’s Homemade Ice Cream I was grabbing our little brother Sam and bringing him back to the apartment to get ready for a party we had Thursday night.

My mom’s husband Murray is retiring, tomorrow being his last day at the office. His company was so sad to see his go so they planned a huge surprise party at the Royal York on Thursday night. Emma, Pate, Sam and I all met up back at the apartment to get ready. Thank goodness Cobi was heading to the party straight from school, there was no room in our tiny shoebox apartment for a 5th person!

Once we were fancified we made our way to the hotel. We were in the Imperial Suite which was lit with purple and pink lights… Totally Murray’s style! We were all told to arrive at 7:00pm as Murray was expecting to go to a political event at 7:30pm, and if you know anything about “Hurry Murray” you know he is always early! So as expected, he and my Mom entered the party promptly at 7:10pm!

He was definitely surprised, he had no idea there was a retirement party planned! There were hilarious speeches, delicious appetizers, a poutine station, a pizza station, a beef wellington station – everything you need for a successful soirée!

But of course, the best part was the cake.

 

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As you know I’m not a fan of fondant, but man does it make good looking cakes!!

That was just the start of a cake-filled weekend.

Emma’s birthday was Friday the 26th, so Friday evening we had a birthday party at Mom’s place.

 

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A 21st Birthday needs an extra special cake!

 

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Apparently Emma mentioned earlier in the week that she liked Banana Bread and Chocolate, so my Mom had a Banana Bread Cake with Chocolate Frosting made.

 

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Look how excited she is!

My Grandfather, on the other hand, doesn’t look as impressed.

 

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The cake was delicious. Less like a loaf of Banana Bread and more like regular cake.

 

Smarties

The next day I had a few errands to run and it was such a beautiful sunny Saturday so I decided to walk everywhere.

First stop was Bulk Barn to pick up the necessary ingredients for Emma’s 2nd birthday cake, the one we’d be enjoying the next day at my Dad’s. She requested a Chocolate Cake filled with Smarties, so I bought a generous amount because my plan was to do more than just fill the cake with Smarties…

 

Summers Ice Cream

On my walk back to the apartment I decided to stop at Summer’s for some of my own Toronto Pot Hole Ice Cream! It was the perfect way to finish off a date with my city.

 

Dad & Liz

The next day I slept in a bit then hopped in the car to head to my Dad’s. We went for a walk with Liz (the yellow pup with muddy brown legs) and she had some fun swimming!

After our walk it was time to get down to baking.

 

Chocolate Smartie Batter

First I whipped up some Chocolate Batter and added in a ton of Smarties.

 

Chocolate Smartie Batter

I put the batter into two different sized cake pans (because we didn’t have two of the same size) but thought it would be fun to stack the smaller one on top of the bigger one and do a ring of Smarties on the ledge!

 

Chocolate Smartie Cake

I made up some extra-chocolatey frosting and started icing the cakes. I put SO much frosting on the cakes that there was hardly a ledge left to line with smarties!

 

Chocolate Smartie Cake

With the frosting you can barely tell the cakes are two different sizes! Once the cake was fully frosted I covered the top of the cake in even more Smarties.

 

Chocolate Smartie Cake

 

 

It still wasn’t enough Chocolate (it never is) so I added a lovely little Smartie border. I could have covered the entire thing with Smarties but everyone kept picking them off the top and eating them so I put the rest of the Smarties in a bowl to keep people away from the cake!

 

Chocolate Smartie Cake

 

From above you can’t even see the cake under all the Smarties… Perfect!

After a delicious dinner of homemade burgers it was time to dive into the Smartie Cake!

 

Emma

 

Isn’t she lovely?

 

Emma

It was a tough cake to cut because the Smarties went everywhere, but she did an excellent job. Opa looks pleased with her cutting prowess.

Happy Birthday Ms Emma!

Now Pate and Emma are gone, but hopefully they’ll be back to visit soon. Or perhaps a road trip out West is in order, to visit them and Cobi’s brother Jesse and his fiancé Andy! After our California road trip I’m definitely up for another, so long as it’s just as delicious!

But for now it’s time to look forward to Wednesday. If you do not know the significance of Wednesday night you’d better do some research because I need suggestions for themed treats to celebrate the Leaf’s return to the playoffs!!

 

 

 

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