A Spring-Time Baby Shower & DIY Ombre Cake

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Two weeks ago, I was supposed to host a baby shower. Then the day before the shower, mama went into labor! Her mom was flying out from Oregon and made it here just after the new, littlest sweet heart graced our city!

As you may guess, this threw a loop in our plans, but we managed to make it all work. We decided to reschedule for Tuesday, but then Sunday night hubby and some of the kids came down with a nasty cold/cough. I didn’t want my friend to bring her fresh new baby to my house and risk them all getting sick! So, she and her mom kindly “rolled with it” when I asked if I could just bring everything over there for the shower.

We totally made it work! And I think mama and baby may have even been more comfortable doing their thing in their own space during the party.

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Our menu consisted of a few different kinds of sandwiches, and a few salads, pink lemonade & cake!

For decorations, we followed the nursery theme: Hot Pink and Turquoise.

So I made some garlands out of tissue paper pom poms (super cheap!) and some jute twine (also very inexpensive, but a natural fiber, so it looks rustic & cute).

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Then, I bought a big bouquet of 24 hot pink roses from Costco and most of them went into a big vase, then I used smaller blue ball jars with a few roses in each as additional vases. They already had some natural fibers tied around them (thank you my darling husband for my super cute Christmas present!), and I tied some more jute around the bigger vase. I just happened to have a table cloth that belonged to my great grandmother which was perfect (pink & turquoise). And I had a pretty turquoise bowl for the salad.

To keep with the sort-of country/rustic style, we served up pink lemonade in drinking jars.

But my favorite part of it all was the cake. Allie asked for a chocolate cake and I knew exactly what I wanted to make. Growing up my mom had this amazing chocolate cake recipe that was made with hot coffee in the batter. It was to die for. Always moist. Well…I searched high and low and didn’t have the recipe (can you believe it!?), and Mom wasn’t home to get me the recipe. So, I found this one on-line. I don’t remember using buttermilk in the recipe, but boy oh boy! This did not disappoint! My only variation was that I used melted coconut oil in place of the vegetable oil (coconut oil is healthier, and SO delish in your pastries!). If you try it, just substitute the same amount you would have used of your other oil.

I did not use the recipe for the chocolate butter cream frosting because I wanted a turquoise frosting. But you can bet that next time I will be making it her way! Instead I just looked up a basic vanilla butter cream recipe. I doubled the recipe to have enough to “dirty ice” and decorate the cake. I didn’t realize how easy making your own frosting is, and I will NOT be going back to the canned frosting at the grocery store!

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DIY Ombre Cake Directions:

1. I first used the uncolored frosting (plain white) and spread a healthy layer of frosting between the cake layers. Then did a thin “dirty icing” layer over the rest of the cake. Dirty icing the cake (if you haven’t been watching Cake Boss on Netflix like I have) is a thin layer of frosting. It catches the little crumbs that come away, and holds them in that thin layer. Then your decorated icing layer won’t have cake crumbs in it!

2. I took about 1/5 of the remaining icing and added a little blue and even less green food coloring to achieve the shade of turquoise that I wanted for the darkest shade (I still went lighter than I thought I wanted because I tend to go too dark with frosting colors and a lot of times they get a little darker as they set).

3. Using only the turquoise icing, I filled my frosting gun (but you could use a decorator bag) and the largest decorator tip I had for making rosettes (Wilton Tip 104 I think – I have a few sizes, so whatever was the biggest). Then I did my best to make ruffles around the bottom of the cake.

4. After going around once, I squeezed the rest of my turquoise frosting out of the gun and back into the bowl where I had it before. To this I added 1/4 of the remaining white frosting. I used this lighter shade, filled my gun again, and did a round with the lighter shade ruffles.

5. I continued this until I got to the top edge of the cake and finished the top of the cake with the same shade in concentric circles to the middle.

6. Finally, I added three of those hot pink roses to the top!

So simple! And I just love how it turned out!

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