Tag Archives: animals

Pink Owl Cake and a Petting Zoo

The cake.

Three tiers.  The 12″ bottom tier was a dark-chocolate butter cake with cherry pie filling.  The 9″ tier was strawberry with fresh strawberry filling.  Those were the two flavors Jovan and Rocky requested for Averi’s first birthday cake.  They left the top 6″ tier to my discretion.  So I baked my pumpkin spice specialty and filled it with a cream cheese icing.  It was all butter-creamed (or chocolate-fudge butter-creamed, as appropriate) and covered in 10 pounds or so of pink marshmallow fondant.

The decorating inspiration was from Averi’s gray and pink owl invitations (created by her Aunt Stormie).  I really hated the the big gray branch I made and placed on the middle tier, but once on, it was too late.  However, I enjoyed the owls.  I had only planned for one (chocolate chips for eyes), ended up doing two and could have done whole rows of them.  If I had it all to do again…


Averi had a “personal” cake, a 6″ funfetti with whipped cream spooned over.   She had never had cake or icing before, so we wanted to make sure she didn’t go in to sugar shock.  She could not understand why so  many people were asking her to dig in to her cake!  Averi was seated for the cake photos in the high chair her mommy celebrated her first birthday in!

It was pink.  And it was owls.

Jovan cut out gazillions of paper owls which hung everywhere and adorned all the little party hats she handmade for all the kiddies from patterned scrapbook paper.  Pink and silver balloons.  Pink satin.  Pink ribbon.  Pink flowers.  Oh and, cookies-on-sticks as favors, delish!


The petting zoo.

Farmer Wrex (do not mistake him for Old McDonald – for Wrex is hip and cool) and his amazingly gorgeous wife, Stefane (stunning in her red hoodie), so kindly made Averi’s party the block extravaganza of the subdivision’s winter by bringing over a few animals for the use of her (60+) guests and all the neighbors.  We had 2 bunnies, 2 rather opinionated and slightly irritated ducks, 1 classic chicken, a black calf that nearly inhaled everyone’s fingers (and Pastor Scott was giving it Pepsi…tsk), a mama goat and her 2 four-day-old baby goats, and one Welsh pony for rides.



One day Averi will look back and think she had an amazing party when she turned one.  But she really was not in the mood to ride a pony!  Not at all.  She cried and held all animals after that in suspect.  But everyone else enjoyed the petting zoo and pony rides up and down the street very much!  Stefane and Wrex are the BEST!

Averi’s 1st birthday celebration  (planned meticulously by mommy-Jovan) was a hoo, hoo-t!,  Get it?…Jeanie

NOTE TO SELF:  Don’t let cake sit in the sun before the party-near disaster!!

pictured: click on thumbnails for a closer look

Sneak Peek


I kiddingly (kind of intending the pun) asked my friend, the goat-farming-guru, if I could borrow a baby goat for my annual grandkids-Nativity picture.  He said, “Sure.  Would you like some other animals?”  Next thing I knew, I had, at my disposal, several hundred choice farm animals, should I desire.


A short-lived break in the frigid weather provided a very sunny morning (the kids were majorly layer-dressed under these costumes and fared quite well, thank-you very much).  We gathered at the Ritchie farm in Brighton just under a barn awning and snapped a few shots.  The animals were so much fun.  Naturally, we never got a shot with all of the kids looking at the same thing or at the camera because they were enoying the goats and cats and sheep and the donkey just like we adults were!  But what a fun fun fun day!


Most embarrassing moment: 

Farmer Wrex handed me the rope which held a donkey on one end and 2 wiley billy goats on the other (I am giving them these labels to make it sound better for me).  Now, they had just been standing there, tied together, but behaving…until he handed me the rope.  “Hold this,” he tells me.  I am standing there looking all “city girl” my kids said.  The second Wrex walked away, the donkey screeched and jerked his head and the 2 goats decided to bolt.  Basically the three animals tried to put me in a strangle-hold.  My whole family, except for my wonderful son, who will now be willed all my earthly goods when I die, were just laughing their heads off, watching me push back on the rope with all my might (with my weany-arms) trying to keep the goats from dragging me to a certain snow-burn death, my shoes just sliding straight backwards to the sound of raucous hee-hawing (my family AND the donkey!).  Rocky saved me.  Still, I am sure I was born to farm.  I would just need different shoes.

Dress-up, anyone?

Yes, I do plan to subject the grandkiddos to this every single year, because it just stinking makes me smile! 

Tonight, I finally get to go through and decide what to do for our Christmas cards (nothing like waiting until that last second, huh?).  And the more chaotic the shot, the more I smile!

What could be more merry and bright than this?…Jeanie

Thumbnails, click for larger image.  Pictured: Guini as Mary, Gemma as an angel, Hunter as a shepherd and Gavin as Joseph.  Averi as an angel, Averi’s daddy goofing around, Hunter corraling his baby goat.  The animals arriving for the photo shoot, and a woolly lamb.

Thanks Wrex and Stefane!!!