Thursday, September 2, 2010

Back To School!

Today was orientation! I took the day off work and headed down to the Guvernment Koolhaus to meet my new peers. Although it felt ridiculously early to have to be somewhere by 9:30 (normally I work at noon), I had to remind myself that this was two hours later than when class starts next week.

When I walked up to the building, there was already a line of people slowly working their way past people from various organizations throughout the college giving away pamphlets, flyers and swag. Inside the building, despite the early hour, the lights were dim and the music was pumping. I believe there were close to a thousand people inside! And we were all wearing ridiculous matching mustard-coloured t-shirts. It was the whole chef school and hospitality school, probably 15 or 20 different programs. We worked our way through the first two rooms, visiting kiosks along the way filled with people looking to recruit for sports teams, telling us where to get our lockers or offering support to international students.

In the third room, we were seated with people from our specific program. I was relieved to find that I didn't feel or look that much older than the people at my table. I think I'm going to fit in okay! And my program is almost entirely girls! I think there are at most 10 guys in a program with 150 students.

So we sat through some speeches. I got to put some faces to the names of people I dealt with last year in my battle to get into the program. After the speeches, they gave us an activity to get to know the people at our tables. We were given an apple, an orange, two bananas, a plate, a bowl, a pipe cleaner, some toothpicks, a napkin and two paring knives and were told to make a presentation of the fruit. I contributed to my group's display by making checkerboards on the on the apple wedges.

There was some judging, and then we all left the club to head back to the school for our program orientations. As we walked back, I watched the sea of hundreds of yellow t-shirts as they crossed the Gardiner Expressway and just laughed. It was pretty ridiculous.

At school, we were herded into classrooms specific to our program where we found brown bag lunches. I had an egg sandwich, it was exactly what I needed.

The next hour was spent listening to a power point presentation of the school rules. My worst nightmares were confirmed: No jewelry, no nail polish, no ponytails.

Somehow, I will survive.

I think most of the programs did a tour after their sessions, but ours didn't, so we were free after that.

First I tracked down my locker. My suspicions when reserving my locker online were correct. The odd numbers meant it was a top locker. Excellent.

Then I tracked down a women who is helping me with my math exemption (there was a bit of mix-up where I was told it was confirmed, but it was not confirmed at all, so I've been trying to get everything fixed up this week). I gave her the form and she was optimistic that I will be exempted from the class, and told me not to register for it.

Then I went to the bookstore to pick up my last few things. As expected, it was an absolute zoo. The bookstore wasn't big enough for all the action so they had set up a stations in the hall for trying on uniforms, buying knives and buying linens. Each station had a huge lineup. I was happy I took care of all that last week. My favorite part was that Mark's Work Warehouse had set up a big truck outside the bookstore where you could walk into the back and there were chairs inside so you could try on safety shoes. Inside the bookstore, the line wrapped all the way around the perimeter of the store and out into the hall. I had lots of time though, so I picked up my shoes, the notes for the math class (Even if I'm not taking it, for $12 I figured it wouldn't hurt to flip through the course notes), and the info I need to do my sanitation course online.

By this time it was only 1pm, so I decided to go sit in another long line and get my student loan stuff sorted. I was really surprised at how easy the process was, no wonder college kids get so far into debt! I won't actually get my loan for about a month though because I opted out of the direct deposit option. I don't trust the government with my bank account number! The loan people thought I was crazy though. They kept trying to convince me that it's perfectly safe. I mean, they really tried. Regardless of whether I agree with them though, I just think it's such a minor inconvenience to wait a few weeks that it's totally worth saving that little bit of my privacy.

After that, I decided to head home because I had a headache. I learned something about myself today. I'm officially addicted to caffeine. I didn't have my regular noon cup of green tea, and from twelve o'clock onwards, I started feeling worse and worse. So I came home, made a cup of tea and started blogging!

Okay, so I'm sure you're wondering....What kind of stuff do you need for pastry school?

Well, I just happen to have finish collecting all of my supplies, so I would be happy to show you!

Of course I need textbooks, course notes, notebooks, pens and an adorable netbook.
The textbook looks amazing, plus it came with little flashcard/cheat sheet dealies that contain all the mixing instructions for the main things I will be baking. The idea is that if you give me a list of ingredients to make say, bread, I can find the corresponding flashcard and it will tell me exactly how to combine those ingredients to get the result that I want. Nifty!

But what am I going to wear???

I got three fresh uniforms, complete with pants, jacket, neckerchief, bar towel, hat and apron. Yes, I'm really going to wear those hats. And I got a cute pink laundry bag to haul my dirty uniforms home at the end of the week. It wasn't until after I got it home that I realized it matches my netbook. John just laughs when that happens.

I got another bag to hold my school books. It's a Targus bag, so it's really nice and it was on sale which is also really nice. My safety shoes are not particularly cute, but apparently they have steel toes and are slip resistant, specially suited for those in the hospitality industry.

I know what you're thinking. "But Jacki, what's in that black case tucked back there in the corner?"

My baking tools! The case opens up like a book. On page one we have wooden spoons, spatulas and yes, that is a paint brush. The only use I can think of for it is maybe to brush crumbs off a cake?
On page two, we have oven mitts, a sil-pat sheet (used instead of parchment paper to line cookie sheets), a strainer, two piping bags (how will I ever survive with only two?!?!), a peeler and two sets of ten piping tips - just round tips and star tips in varying sizes.
And on page three we find the fun/sharp stuff. Two ice cream scoops (have been jonesing for these for ages), a microplane grater (been jonesing for that one too), some heavy duty scissors and some knives. One of them is bigger than anything I have at home!And lastly, in the outside pockets, we find a scraper, a decorative edger, a smooth edger and some kind of probe that sits outside of the oven, but the stick part goes in the oven, into the food and continuously monitors the temperature.
Apparently this is all I will need to bake all manners of wonderful desserts!

So in conclusion, I am going to have three really heavy bags to lug in everyday. If I come out of this program with nothing else, it will be strong arms!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Gettin' it all Figured Out

The very last piece fell in place yesterday.

Work approved my part time schedule!

That was the last thing I needed to organize my school year perfectly. I'm starting out with a small schedule of 16 hours a week. Then in November when I can work Saturdays, I'll ramp up to 19.5 hours per week. And I'm just going to play it by ear - if I feel like my course load is light enough that I can take on more hours, I will. I figured it was better to start small and ramp up, then start big and stress myself out because I took on too much.

So I have a commuter situation that is nearly impossible to achieve in Toronto (and I still give John all the credit for this since he is the one who found the apartment and found me my job). I wake up, hop on a subway for 6 stops (20 minutes) and it lets me off two blocks from school. After school I come home the same way, then pop next door to work and pop back home. So basically I can go to work school in the same day, come home in between and still only commute less than an hour a day. Considering a typical commute in Toronto is 45 mins - 1 hour each way, I think that is amazing! My streak continues!

Now I'm just getting all my back-to-school stuff going. I've signed up for orientation on Sept 2nd. I found my book, uniform and supply list, so I'll probably start picking that stuff up next weekend (I have to buy a $350 baking tool kit, how fun is that!) I'm starting to get excited! It's starting to feel real!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

We had an Earthquake!

Crazy, eh?

I was at work and it was interesting to watch everyone realize what was happening at the same time. I couldn't feel the earth tremble, I just felt the building sway from side to side. It's two hours later and I still have a funny feeling in my stomach.

Some people went home from work citing being too shaken up to continue, but I think it's just because it was so unnerving. It wasn't bad enough for anything to fall off my desk, for example.

So I don't think we were in any real danger, but it was definitely spooky!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Garden: Day 8

It's only been a few days, but there have been some changes in my garden!

My sprouts are growing a bit better, but still not enough for a sandwich.
And that's not the only thing sprouting!

My green onions have started to sprout. They're so tiny, I think it's impossible that they'll every become vegetables.

The green onions were actually the last ones to sprout out of everything I planted. The mesclun greens have tonnes of sprouts. I still have no idea what any of them are, but I can see subtle differences between them so I know I've got a few varieties growing.
And check out the zucchinis! They got this big in just a week!
After they were already planted, I decided to do some research on them (backwards, I know) and it turns out that a single plant should be enough to keep us in zucchinis for the summer. So maybe planting 16 was a bit overkill. Apparently each plant produces a zucchini every two days. Yikes!

But to be honest, given my track record with seedlings, I'll be impressed if more than say, five make it to maturity. And worst case, I'll dig 'em up and give them away. Apparently you can eat the flowers too! You can chop them up and put them in frittata or use them to wrap soft cheese in and fry. This should be interesting!

Some of the plants have improved over the past week. My cactus is starting to get its colour back. It had turned a deep purple over the winter, but now it seems to be returning to its original pink colour.

The banana tree has a couple of fresh new leaves. Those ratty old ones will be gone in no time. It's also weeping at night (drops of water drip from the tips of the leaves) so that tells me it's happy too.
and one of the strawberries has started turning red! I can't wait until these are ready to eat.
And we have new additions! Introducing.....



These plants were on sale at Canadian tire last weekend, so I bought two. I'm not sure how well they'll grow in a container, but I figure it's worth a shot!

They've already got the start of a few berries:

At the same sale I picked up two blueberry plants!

The little tag with them promises 1cm blueberries in late July.

And the plant I'm most excited about? Rhubarb!
I found this at a fruit stand near our building when I was on my way to my bridesmaid's dress fitting. I was too excited to find it, rhubarb reminds me of home. I know they get bigger and stronger every year, so I gave it a pot big enough that it should have lots of room to grow its roots. I'm not expecting too much out of it this year, but hopefully I'll get at least enough for some strawberry-rhubarb sauce for vanilla ice cream.

And lastly, because I had some leftover dirt, I decided to try a little experiment. I took a couple of cloves of garlic from my fridge and buried them. I wonder if anything will grow?
I'm really happy with my garden! With the exception of dill, I think I have all of the plants I want. Which is a good thing, because I'm running out of space!
The next step is to make it a little cozier. I want to put down some bamboo mats and John wants to put out a chaise. Oh yeah, and here is his contribution this week to our improved summer lifestyle:
Definitely an improvement over last summer!

And since we're talking about gardens, I thought I'd share a picture of some other flowers I'm working on:
Fondant calla lilies for Jess's wedding. 41 down, 69 to go!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Garden: Day 1

I've caught the gardening bug big time this summer!

As usual, it started with a basil plant I picked up at the supermarket. As I'm sure many of you know, I have a long history of killing basil plants. I think last summer alone, I killed four. So when I saw one at the supermarket about a month ago, I figured it's never too soon to start trying again. So I brought it home and through some miracle, managed to keep it alive!

John asked me if I wanted to go putter around Chapters with him last weekend and I remembered seeing little grow-your-own sprout kits there, so I tagged along. Next to the kits I found a book called You Grow Girl that had cute pictures and looked beginner-friendly so I picked up both since I had a gift card.

Much like the quilt I made a few months ago, once I start reading about a new hobby, I get a bit obsessive. By the end of the week I had finished the book, mapped out how my shiny new container garden was going to look and researched several plants and the best way to grow them online (youtube has some great container gardening videos). It makes John giggle when I get like this because I'm so predictable when I get a new hobby. I'm unstoppable.

So this morning we rented a car for a couple of hours and hit the garden center. We started with Wal-mart for cheap pots, soil and fertilizer and then went to two nurseries for the plants. We got home and made lunch and then I went straight to work setting up the garden.

It was a lot of work and I made a huge mess of dirt everywhere, but I found it really enjoyable and I felt like I was making progress quickly. I sowed some seeds, transplanted some starter plants and repotted all of my house plants because I thought some of them could use new nutrient-rich soil (I used Miracle-Gro Premium potting soil).

I've decided to take pictures of everything every couple of weeks to keep a journal of the garden this summer in the hopes of being able to look back on it in the fall and figure out ways to improve it for next year. So, although I planted a few of the plants a couple of weeks ago, I'm considering today Day 1 since that's when I planted the majority of them.

Let's start with the herbs!

First up: The basil that started it all. It still lives indoors next to the window because I find it so sensitive to water levels, I'm afraid it will dry out too quickly in direct sun.

Then we have my favorite herb of all, Thai basil. It lives with some tiny pepper plants. I just moved them outside three days ago and the basil loves it but the peppers hate it. I'm not sure they're going to survive.
Next up is greek oregano. I got four tiny plants and spread them out in a pretty pink planter I rescued from the lobby downstairs where people abandon stuff they don't want. It has no drainage holes, so used a layer of acetate (left over from when I had to make that house shaped cookie cutter) with holes in it to create drainage inside the pot.
Next up: The Herbal Teas

I can't wait to make my own herbal teas!

I couldn't find a peppermint plant, so instead I got spearmint. I think it will still be delicious.
And this is a magical hybrid plant called chocolate mint. I'm very interested to find out if that's how it actually tastes.
I've heard lemon verbena makes a lovely tea, so I picked up two of those (since each one was just a couple of stalks). Apparently it can grow to 6 feet tall but I don't think that's going to happen in this little pot.
And this is too cool: Stevia!! I've heard it's really tricky to grow but if I can pull it off I'll have a natural sweetener that is supposedly sweeter than sugar but with very few calories.
That's it for the herbs! On to the Fruits!

Guess what I found? A new banana tree!! I'm super happy about this, my life has been noticeably void of banana trees since my last one died over the winter. It's in sad shape now, but I think I can nurse it back to health. Banana trees with ratty leaves remind me of stray cats with torn ears. They just need a little love.
In sadder news, the cherry tomato plant I bought about a month ago is on its last legs. I had to cut off almost all of its leaves as they were all dead.
Check out my strawberry patch! I have three plants and they are supposed to provide continuous fruit right up to September. The one on the left has a couple of sad leaves but hopefully it will be healthy in no time.
Is coffee a fruit? It grows berries so I guess so. I've had this plant since I was in Halifax. I think it's about two and a half now. I'm told that after three years I should start to see berries. Some day I hope to be able to brew a cup of home grown coffee for John. Pipe dream? Maybe.
And Erin, this one is for you. Here's how my lemon tree is looking. It has only grown one leaf since I left Halifax, but hopefully today's repotting will change that. I'm still 14 years away from fresh lemons.
And our last category: Veggies

These are the broccoli sprouts I planted last week. The instructions said to just sprinkle the seeds on the soil but it seems to me the only ones that sprouted are the ones that were actually buried so I may put a layer of soil on top of them if they don't sprout soon. Supposedly the go from seeds to snacks in ten days.

The next pictures are pretty boring because I just planted the seeds today. The saran wrap is to keep the moisture in until the seeds germinate.

Green onions. Yes that is a foil cake pan, I ran out of pots. 60 to 75 days until maturity.
Gold Rush Zuchinni. I planted two rows of them. According to the packet, they take exactly 49 days. I find it impossible to believe they can predict it that accurately.
And the veggies I am most excited about: a mesclun greens garden. I hope to have at least nine plants grow to maturity (40 to 65 days). I used McKenzie seed tape so I actually have no idea what kinds of plants are in there.

So that's it for Day 1! We'll see how the next few weeks go and if they go well I'll probably plant a few more. Actually if they all die I'd probably plant more too. So there will probably be more planting! I will post updates over the summer, wish me luck!!

Friday, April 23, 2010

600 Cookies

For a week, I disappeared off the Earth.

If you tried to reach me to wish me a happy birthday and I didn't return your call, it's not because I didn't want to! It's because I was a slave to the cookies.

So many cookies.

By some miracle I managed to pull off my biggest baking project yet! John's company ordered 200 gift bagged 'favours' for a large meeting they were holding. The instruction I was given was that they wanted something with their logo. So I put together some samples of ways I could make the logo on little fondant circles and said that I could put it on either cookies or cupcakes. They picked cookies.

Well, one cookie isn't much of a favour, so I offered to put together little bags with three cookies each: one with the logo, one shaped like a house, and one shaped like a car (there's not much cookie-friendly imagery to work with in the insurance industry as I'm sure you can imagine), all done in the company's colours.

Piece of cake, right?

I planned out everything in my head. Worked out costs and what supplies I would need. I figured I would start them a week ahead of time and freeze them as I go. John and I went out to the Michaels in Mississauga and picked up the bags and icing colours.

On my birthday last Friday, I had taken the day off work but John ended up having to work, so I thought it would be a great time to get a head start on the cookies. I woke up early and headed down to the St. Lawrence market because they're the biggest suppliers of cookie cutters I know of. I found a circle cutter for the logo. They didn't have any car shaped cutters! But they had one that was supposed to be a bus but actually looked like a PT Cruiser, so I figured that would do. I picked up a motorcycle cutter too, just in case.

But there was no house cutter! So, I left, feeling discouraged. I called the Bulk Barn, McCalls and Kitchen Stuff Plus, but it seemed no one makes a house shaped cookie cutter! How on Earth was I going to make 200 house shaped cookies with out a cookie cutter?

This was the first of many snags.

Eventually I realized I was going to have to make my own. I headed down the street to Loomis and Toles and bought a sheet of heavy acetate. I drew out a picture of the house I wanted and measured how long the sides would be. I cut a strip of the acetate and carefully scored and folded it into a house. How to attach it together? Well I wasn't sure how food safe crazy glue is, so I went with the classic duct tape, wrapping it around the back so it wouldn't touch the food.

Okay, I had a house cutter. It wasn't pretty, but it was the right shape and it would cut out cookies.

Time to start baking.

I threw together a batch of sugar cookie dough. Of course it had to chill for an hour before I could bake it (otherwise the cookies don't come out light and fluffy). Once it had chilled, I turned it out on the counter to roll it and made another batch of dough to chill while the first one was being baked.

I got a great groove going. At all times, one batch of dough in the fridge, one sheet of cookies in the oven, one ready to go in the oven next, and one that I'm working on. After three batches of dough, I had all the circles baked. Awesome.

Once that was done, I took a break from baking and made white some royal icing to dip them in. I dipped the 200 cookies and laid them all out to dry. They all fit on the table, so I was able to do them all at once. Not a bad day's work. I went to bed feeling really good about how productive the day had been.

On Saturday, John told me that for my birthday he wanted to take me out for brunch and then to the zoo. How fun is that! But it was raining out, so we decided to just go for brunch and put off the zoo until after he gets back from Honduras.

He took me to a little restaurant called Simple Bistro on Mount Pleasant Street, only a 10 minute walk from home. We had the best eggs benedict that I can ever remember having! It was a perfectly poached egg and hot peameal bacon on a home-made croissant with hand whisked hollandaise sauce. And it was served with crispy home-made shoestring fries and greens. Perfection. Even the tea was good. We will definitely be going back.

When we got home I decided it was time to make some cookies. I started baking houses.

My crudely constructed cookie cutter worked out okay, but it was about this time that I started to understand the magnitude of the project. I realized the houses were going to take six batches of cookie dough because they were somewhat bigger than the circles. Baking them would take more than a day. After three batches or so, I decided to work on icing them. That's when I realized they wouldn't all fit on my table. I could only fit about 80, so it would take three rounds of icing to get them all done and each round needed 4 hours for the icing to dry and then it would take a further 3 hours to pipe all of the finishing details on them. Frantically, I started working out how many hours I had before they were due, Thursday morning. I started to wonder if I had bitten off more than I could chew.

By the end of Saturday I had most of the houses baked and two rounds iced and decorated. And I realized that there was no chance of all the cookies fitting into my freezer. I filed that one away in my brain as another problem to solve.

On Sunday, I realized that I had to get as much done this weekend as possible so I woke up at the crack of dawn. I finished baking the houses and got started on the cars. It was at about this time I remembered that they had also ordered a cake for Tuesday, so I had better get that started today too.

And I realized that I had yet to even start working on the 200 fondant logos so I got to work on those too. After three and a half hours of punching out little letters with a cutter and cutting curves out (using another acetate cutter I made) and then carefully attaching them to the cookies with royal icing, I had 70 done. Yikes.

By the end of the 3-day weekend I had about 500 cookies baked, two chocolate cakes baked, stacked and crumb coated, 400 cookies iced and 270 cookies decorated.

From there on, I started running on very little sleep. I was up at 6am each morning and in bed by 1am if I was lucky. Each day before work I would ice another 80 and let them dry while I was at work. Even on my lunch hours I was either running around looking for ribbon or at home making buttercream. At night on Monday I finished up the cake (it actually turned out pretty cute) and did another 70 fondant decorations. On Tuesday night I piped the details on all 200 cars. My fridge and my freezer were absolutely packed with cookies.

Wednesday night was crunch time! John started bagging them while I finished the last 60 fondant decorations. I was terrified that he would get to the end of the bags and realize that we were a few cookies short because I hadn't had time to double count them. I had cookie dough in the fridge and extra royal icing standing by just in case but I really didn't want to be up until 3am doing more baking. I lucked out though, we actually had 6 extra cookies.

We were finished at about the same time. I joined him at the table and we tied little blue and green ribbon bows until 2am.

When we were done, the only containers we had big enough to hold them were the laundry baskets.

On Wednesday night I went to bed feeling so relieved that they were all done. I still can't believe I pulled this off. John said he couldn't wait to get them out of the apartment. It smelled so strongly of sugar in here that I actually had that feeling you get from eating too much sugar when I hadn't even eaten any.

When I got home from work yesterday I just flopped out. I laid in bed playing video games on my DS with peanut butter and banana toast. I had missed relaxing so much!

Tonight I need to clean this place up though, there's wax paper, ziplock bags and ribbon everywhere!

Overall, I'm not sure whether or not I would do this again, but I think I probably would if they asked me. It took so much more supplies than I thought though, so next time I would price it differently I think. I kept running out of stuff I never expected to run out of, like wax paper, salt and baking powder. And I went through a whole 10kg bag of flour, about 15 lbs of icing sugar and I lost count of the butter at 10lbs.

I definitely learned that I need to work on my time management skills. I get into a zone when I'm baking and I don't realize that 4 hours have passed, so I'll think I have more time than I actually do. I also see a lot of ways this process could have been better streamlined, but I was limited by the size of my tiny kitchen and oven.

And the fact that I didn't hate these cookies by the end of it, I was actually still having fun, makes me a little more sure that this is what I'm cut out for. This is what I'm meant to be doing.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Happy Birthday John!!

John turned 32 this weekend! And it was the first time since January that he had a whole weekend off! He's back to working Monday to Friday again, so life is good.

On Saturday, our keys from AutoShare arrived so we decided to go for a drive. I needed some baking stuff, so John offered to take me out to Michaels in Mississauga. We Googled mapped it: 26 minute drive. Ok. So we booked a car for three hours thinking that would give us plenty of time.

This was my first time leaving the city by car since we moved here and I didn't expect to be so nervous. My stomach was knots though on the highways. I'm not sure if it's because I'm not used to being in cars anymore or if it's just that Toronto highways are so intimidating (or probably a combination of both) but I got pretty squirrelly.

It took half an hour just to get out of downtown, and when we got on the highway, there was an accident, so we had to find an alternate route. The end result is that we got totally lost and by the time we got to Michaels, about two hours had passed so we only had about ten minutes before it was time to go home.

I quickly ran through and picked up some new icing colours, some large cakeboards for the cakes I'm making for his work and a really cool kit that I can use to make fancy fondant letters.

On the way home we got lost again. I think we went too far East. After 20 minutes of wandering through midtown trying to find our little corner, we finally got our bearings back and pulled into the parking lot at 4:01, one minute late.

The next person to use the car was waiting there. She said she had just called AutoShare and was on hold waiting to report that the car wasn't there, so we got there just in the nick of time (the fees for returning a car late are pretty substantial)

So that was our first drive out of the big city!

We stopped for Chinese food on the way home (Manchu Wok, blech!) and had a lazy rest of the afternoon. At night we watched the fights (Silva, your fight against Maia completely destroyed any fleeting hope I might have had that you would someday return to your former glory of being the top pound for pound fighter in the UFC.) and had snacks. It was a good day.

On Sunday it was John's birthday so I made him a special breakfast of eggs, bacon and pancakes shaped to say "32" (and there may have been a heart shaped one too. Maybe.) In the afternoon we went to see Clash of the Titans. I really liked it! I wish it had been longer though.

After the movie we went out for dinner. John had requested fajitas for his birthday supper so we headed over to the Pickle Barrel. We split a pound of half chicken, half steak fajitas, they were so good! 2 oz cocktails were $6.99 so I ordered a peach bellini that ended up being as big as my head. It was yummy though.

And when we got home it was time for birthday cake! Check it out:
John had requested fruit flavoured cake so I made him a triple layer blueberry cake with strawberry filling. It's covered with a thin layer of vanilla-almond buttercream and a layer of marshmallow fondant. I used my 6" pan but somehow the cake still turned out huge and really heavy!

On top I put some happy cats that I had made in advance. They're fondant too. And you can't tell from this photo, but their tails are linked in the back. When I brought it out, John burst out laughing, so I think it was a success. And it was absolutely delicious. For flavour, it was one of my best cakes yet! There's still a tonne of it left though, I don't know how we're ever going to eat it all.

All in all, we had a fun weekend. And I took this Friday off for my birthday, so it's just a four day week!