how to make flower cake for an intimate wedding of 320 people!

three months out: practice buttercream flowers. watch how-to videos. embrace the bedtime instagram session and search #buttercreamrose often. order all of the tips from wilton and all of the color gels from americolor. try swiss buttercream, screw up italian buttercream, settle on american. test the almond cake, the hazelnut cake, and the coconut rose cake six or eight times. make a folder with all of the recipes. order a pan rack! call him jim. make a schedule. acquire a large white board to make some lists. get cake boards, cake boxes, piping bags, parchment circles, and gold pearls. make a sam’s club list and a grocery store list. separate them into perishables and non-perishables. buy all of the non-perishables. think about cake stands, come close to buying this blue one, but decide against it since it doesn’t fit with the overall aesthetic (and since you bought all of the wilton tips when you really only needed some of these and some of these) and this cake situation is about eggsibs, not your personal cake stand desires.

consult with eggsis, consult again, just don't stop talking or thinking about cake.

rent dress, make sure it fits with enough room to allow for taste testing.

three weeks out: clean out one of your freezers. fill it with cookie dough, pop-tarts, and muffins for the before-the-wedding festivities and the after-wedding breakfast. begin baking cake layers at a leisurely pace. once they are cool, wrap them in plastic wrap, label with masking tape, and freeze. do not stack more than two layers on top of one another before they are completely frozen.

five days out: clean out fridge. replace the baking soda box. buy all of the heavy cream and butter in grand forks. take a deep breath, or a nap, or a b-12 shot.

four days out and three days out: realize your vanilla cupcake recipe still sucks. work on it, save all the good ones, bake 16 batches. put them on sheet pans, wrap them in plastic wrap, and freeze. keep some out to practice frosting swoops. bake all remaining cake layers and freeze. 

two days out: welcome mum to town!! assign her to frosting duty and emergency butter runs. frost all cakes with a white layer of buttercream. don’t be lazy, do a proper crumb coat, firm up in the fridge, and then do another coat. store uncovered in the fridge.

one day out: welcome celeste to town!! color all of the frosting for the flowers, fill piping bags. cut out small parchment squares. pipe flowers ad infinitum. refrigerate on sheet pans until firm. top cakes with a mound of frosting to give dimension to the flowers, top the mounds with flowers. fill in empty spaces between the flowers with leaves and artful blobs. tweezer on gold pearls. store in the fridge.

eat pizza because it’s friday and because pizza appeared on the farm while everyone was outside setting up for the rehearsal dinner and because eggboy came in with a slice hanging out of his mouth and it looked good.

say hi to eggsis and any other visitors that swing by! 

go to the rehearsal, sneak out of the rehearsal dinner early to finish the remaining flowers. brainstorm the finishing touches and a way to differentiate the center cake from the other cakes. brainstorm brainstorm brainstorm. taco bout it with celeste and mum. go to sleep, confident that quality brainstorming really does happen in the middle of the night. wake mid-slumber with the correct idea! cha-ching! set an alarm to go off the next morning so that you don’t forget it. (“marzipan cut-out heart” 9am.)

wedding day: take cupcakes out of the freezer, frost them all, put em in boxes and keep at room temp. make marzipan heart. assign mum to pop-tart glaze and sprinkle duty!

pack everything up (cakes, cake stands, spatulas, gloves, piping bags with any leftover frosting, tweezers, and sprinkles), fill eggmom’s mini van, ride slowly slowly all the way there. set everything up at the venue, add a last-minute border around the center cake. 

yeah go team!!! hi fives all around. cakes stay out at room temp. 

get hairs did! eat a bagel. put on dress. acquire a brother-in-law!!!!!!!! party. cheer on eggsis and eggbro as they cut the cake! steal two slices, go outside with celeste, style those suckers, and get those shots before the sun goes down! eat nachos, lose voice, guard cake leftovers, bring them home, stick them in the deep freeze, and go to bed!!

yayyyy!!!! congratulations, eggsis and eggbro!!!!!!!! 🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉

photos by celeste noche!

macaroni's first egg!!!!!!

we hyperventilated for five minutes straight. and then omg-ed for five more. it was the greatest hanukkah present ever in all the land! one teeny tiny egg, too small for most of our egg cups and very lightly speckled. everything we've waited for since june (they grow up so fast!). we cuddled it and stared at it and finally decided that we should eat it ceremoniously, out of the egg cup we bought on our honeymoon.

we wanted a six-minute egg, but with such a dainty little specimen we reduced the time to five and it was perfect. firm whites, a yolk the thickness of honey. and its color! we kvelled so hard, we've never been prouder. is this what having an honor roll student is like? can i get a bumper sticker about all this? 

we spread our little egg onto buttered toast and sprinkled it with salt while the snow came down outside. it was tasty and bucolic af. now we're researching how to bronze the shell so we can keep it on our mantel forever and ever. 

we're so proud of you, macaroni!!


a little tractor adventure

well, it was a big tractor, but a little adventure.

the tractor needed a new part, so eggboy had to drive it to the fix-it man.

junior cat was not allowed to come.

but i was! here is the view from the buddy seat as we drove down the highway and stopped traffic. tractors don't go very fast! eggboy was focused on not hitting any bunnies but he still smiled for my rearview mirror picture. what a guy.

(no cars ahead of us, they are all stuck behind us.)

we even drove across the bridge to north dakota.

past my favorite sign... 

and my other favorite sign... (look, the grain mill in the background!)

and then we arrived at the tractor fix-it place on the edge of town, where a row of combines welcomed us with glee.

eggdad picked us up in his pickup and gave us popcorn because you can get free popcorn at a lot of the farm shops in town. it was salty and tasty and perfect with eggboy's hat sweat. 

the end!



our time there was brief and not terribly eventful, but it was beautiful and the coffee alone was enough to make me reconsider my whole life plan: find a new job and adopt a new value system that will enable me to justify spending $5,000 on a swiss coffee maker. each time we had coffee, eggboy and i could do nothing more than sit and sip and let our eyes roll to the back of our heads as we tried to find new ways to voice our love for this dark sweet buttery coffee that was thick as soup and finished too soon. 

fondue can wait, order seven more coffees.

let's marry this coffee.

let's have babies with this coffee. 

let's hijack the keystone pipeline, reroute it from lucerne to east grand forks, and then make it carry this coffee.

our love and obsession turned into confusion towards american coffee. how is it possible that thin watery bottomless coffee exists all over the states when even the coffee in the innsbruck train station lobby makes me want to lie on the ground and cuddle with it all day?

i'll shut up now. and then go make a swiss coffee maker fund piggy bank at the paint your own pottery place. 

there's this other thing i want to tell you about! chügelipasteteli. it's my new favorite word. (even though for the longest time we called it chügelipügeli because we kept forgetting the second part of the word.) it's a lucerne specialty that's basically a mountain shaped chicken pot pie with veal and meatballs instead of chickens. it was the thing you want to eat most when it's cold outside and you're dusted with snow. the one that we had was decorated with puff pastry hearts, so yes, i was obsessed from the beginning. 

other goodies we ate in lucerne were eggboy's first döner, a bunch of marzipan, an easter tart, breakfast like there was no tomorrow, and, of course fondue. it was great fondue, smelly fondue. we were touristy about it and had it at a touristy place, but we were, after all, tourists.