birthdays | chocolate | cupcake photos | cupcake toppers | cupcakes | ice cream | recipe | vanilla

Birthday girl, party of one.

July 30, 2014

It'd my birthday!

Hey y’all- it’s my birthday! And holy crap... I’m 33 years old.

Last year at this time I was preparing to turn 32. I was newly engaged, looking at houses to buy, and my hair was short (& blonde). Now I’m 33, my hair is chin length & dark brown with bangs, I’m planning our wedding… and whattaya know? We’ve got a house.

Which is weird, ’cause I still paint my nails with glitter polish, wear bandaids with cartoon characters on them & feel like I’m 16. Anyway. In honor of my upcoming birthday, I thought I’d do a recap of The Life List.

So here are the original 32 things from last year’s life list, with one added for this year’s birthday. I haven’t really accomplished much on this list yet, but hey- gives me something to look forward to, right? And of course, cupcakes. (more on them later)

The Life List update!

  1. Vote for a female presidential candidate (not just in a primary- but an actual election, and not a Vice President).
  2. Open my own bakery/coffee shop.
  3. Attend the Met Gala.
  4. Plant & successfully grow an edible fruit tree in my yard, probably apple. I love me some apples & they do great in NY.  – This is happening very soon!
  5. Own a brownstone in downtown Manhattan or Brooklyn, or a home built prior to 1940. The older the better, in fact!Okay, well, we bought one built in 1953. Close enough, haha.
  6. Travel all over Europe, with no specific time frame or monetary restraints.
  7. Buy a car from a cooler decade to drive around on weekends. For example; AStudebaker from the 1920′s, or Ford pickup truck from the 1930′s… hell, I’d settle for a ’50′s Buick or Chevy, or even a 1960 Chevy Delivery sedan. Old cars > new. All day, everyday.
  8. Get my driver’s license so I can drive my awesome 1920′s car around on weekends like Daisy Buchanan (hopefully sans killing anyone).
  9. See a favorite band perform in another country (not Canada, doesn’t count… too close!).
  10. Have pink hair one more time. I can’t cross this one off yet, but I do have plans for my wedding. Think “something blue.” *wink*
  11. Buy a farm. Literally.
  12. Grow enough tomatoes in one season to make a few jars of homemade sauce, with NO store bought ingredients.
  13. Complete the family tree, equally, so that one side isn’t traced back to 1300 and the other is still stuck at 1830.
  14. Win more than $500 on a lottery ticket (okay, so I know this is a matter of luck & has nothing to do with me, but still).
  15. Learn Gaelic, French & German.
  16. Write (& publish) a book.
  17. Replace all the jadeite pieces of my grandmother’s that I broke.Didn’t do that 100% yet, but I did start a wicked vintage Pyrex collection!
  18. Learn to sew on a real sewing machine.
  19. Fix up my mom’s vintage blue 1967 Columbia Thunderbolt bicycle with new chains, new white wall tires & a basket on the front.
  20. Learn to clean, de-bone & cook fish perfectly.
  21. Hire Chrisie to paint a portrait of Indy in a stately, dignified pose. Like this!
  22. Finally make a t-shirt quilt.
  23. To be one of those super organized people with an actual home office. Close… but not 100%. We will have an “office” area soon, but I’m nowhere near being organized.
  24. Make my own usable pottery- dishes, bowls, etc.
  25. Learn how to Marcel wave my hair.
  26. Make a jelly roll without the cake “cracking.”
  27. Get back into watercolor painting.
  28. Learn how to really work the shit out of my camera like a pro.
  29. Buy a working antique gramophone/phonograph.
  30. Start to do yoga.
  31. Make macarons that are perfect on the first try.
  32. Finally get those tattoos I have all drawn up.
  33. Do something TOTALLY unexpected in my 33rd year.

All in all, over the past year I’ve done SO MUCH… but not much from this list! Not that it matters, this is for fun. The important things that have happened this year far surpass making a jelly roll without the cake cracking.

But I look forward to what this new year of life brings. Both challenges and triumphs. And thank you all for being a part of it!

And like I said… there are cupcakes:

Vanilla cupcakes with a scoop of chocolate ice cream! #birthday

Vanilla cupcakes typed with a scoop of rich, melty chocolate ice cream. Yes, I’m lactose intolerant when it comes to ice cream. But on your birthday.. some things are just worth it!

Birthday ice cream cupcakes.


Makes about 12 


  • 1 1/3 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 quart chocolate ice cream/gelato/frozen non-dairy dessert, store-bought or homemade


  1. Preheat your oven to 350° F.
  2. Whisk dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. Add the milk, cream and vanilla to a measuring cup; set aside.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Then beat in the eggs, one at a time. Then, using a wooden spoon, incorporate the dry ingredients, in three separate increments, alternating with the milk mixture. DO NOT OVERMIX.
  4. Line your muffin tin and fill the liners between 1/2 and 3/4 of the way full. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
  5. Let cool on a wire rack until room temperature. Place one scoop of ice cream on each cupcake, serve immediately (with forks & spoons!). Top with sprinkles, marshmallow or hot fudge sauce accordingly.

Birthday cupcakes!

I firmly believe it is everyone’s right to relive their childhood on their birthday. So… Mini plastic ballerinas & plastic ice cream cone cupcake toppers? Yes please.

The ice cream I chose was a very rich, almost gelato-y one. Anything frozen can work, even frozen yogurt. These waxed cups hold up better with the melting ice cream than paper liners, FYI. They’re commonly known as “nut cups” (I know, stop giggling) and you can buy them in most craft or baking supply stores.

Birthday cupcakes: chocolate ice cream scooped onto vanilla cupcakes.

Just be forewarned: the ice cream will get super crazy melty very fast! Especially in this weather, unless you live in Australia or the Arctic. You have to kind of eat it off first, then tackle the cupcake. Messy, but oh-so-fun.

Happy birthday to me.

 Suggestions for use: EAT THEM! Top them with anything you’d top an ice cream sundae with.
Soundtrack: NOFX – “New Happy Birthday Song?”
Sources & credits: Plastic mini- ballerina cupcake toppers; Layer Cake Shop, plastic ice cream cone toppers; from a now-closed store on Etsy, cupcake cups from the local pizza place (originally for Italian ices), rainbow sprinkles from the supermarket, striped tea towel from Ikea, black & pink striped paper straws from sweet estelle’s baking supply.
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