Sunday, June 17, 2012

America the Beautiful Cake

I did it!  It's Sunday evening, and I finished my fourth and final entry.

My vision for this cake was to be all about our beautiful country because Southwest Airlines flies domestically and covers almost all of the lower 48 states.  The United States is beautiful.  You can travel around our large country and see rocky beaches, sandy beaches, huge mountains, redwood forests, enormous freshwater lakes, large cities, and quaint towns.  I wanted to try to make my cake to reflect that.

On Friday, I re-purposed the classic birthday cake I'd made and carved it into a map of the United States.  I did it freehand, so it's not perfect, but there's no mistaking what it's supposed to be.

On Friday night, Oliver helped me make another batch of homemade fondant, and we dyed most of it green.   After the kids were in bed,  I rolled it out and did the difficult job of molding it around the cake.  Yup, i did that after working on the Baked Alaska.  I was busy, busy!

Then came the tough but fun part.  Last night (Saturday), I used fondant and made miniature icons to represent a handful of the cities that Southwest flies to.  These are the first four I made.  I made the seashell to represent Southern California (I put it where San Diego would go on my cake map).  I made a miniature hot dog to represent Chicago and a miniature ear of corn to represent Des Moines.  The sun, I used for Southern Florida.

By the time I'd finished, I also made dice for Las Vegas, a mug of coffee for Seattle, the Statue of Liberty for New York, and a Mardi Gras mask for New Orleans.  I added in yellow dots to represent the other cities Southwest flies to, and I made a Southwest airplane for the cake, too.

The cake was all about the beauty of our country's landscape, so I wanted to go somewhere beautiful to photograph it for the contest.  We decided to make the short drive up to Red Rocks Amphitheater and Park.  It's Father's Day, so I snapped a photo of my husband with our kids.  I couldn't have worked all of the hours on these cakes if it wasn't for their support, and I couldn't have had these beautiful pictures without my husband's involvement and help.  Thank you, Family!

Here is the photo I chose for my entry with my "America the Beautiful" cake.

Here is my entry pin on Pinterest:

I've really had fun with this contest.  I'm a competitive person, and I get really excited about contests.  This contest was an absolute blast.  I got to be creative, and I got to bake a ton with my kids.  The photo shoots were the best part, though, because that's when I felt like all my hard work was coming together.

No matter how the contest turns out, I'm glad I spent this week giving it my all.  Happy 41st Birthday, Southwest Airlines!  Thank you for letting me celebrate with you!


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