Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Seating cards favours!!!

It's about time these got a FULL post. 

One week before the wedding, Mom and I decided to tackle a HUGE task, which I was dying to do.  I wanted so many special, original and creative aspects for the wedding, most of which were actually accomplished.  One I REALLY wanted to do, was make cookie seating cards for our guests, instead of a normal paper seating chart.  When googling original seating cards ideas, I saw these AWESOME seating card cookies, actually done by a girl in Toronto.  I knew they'd be a lot of work, but if I could accomplish it, SO WORTH IT.

Even up to the moment of buying all of the ingredients for this endeavour, I was unsure as to whether I would have enough time, patience, ability to tackle 110 home made cookies, hand decorated, hand rolled, hand iced cookies!  With Mom encouraging me all the way, and offering to help, I felt a lot better!

I wish I has pictures of just how much stuff I had to buy to tackle this project, but I forgot.  Hate that.  In the end the major stuff that was required, was needed in MASS amounts:

8 lbs of butter
4 pounds of flour
1 pound of sugar
1/2 a LARGE bottle of vanilla
2 dozen eggs

Thank goodness for my Mom!  Seriously.  I never would have done this without her!  She was an amazing help at making the dough, rolling it out with me, cutting 110 cookies, baking them alongside me, helping pipe and flood the base and just encouraging me about how great they will look.  I ended up hand addressing each on of them on my own, which made more sense so that they would all look uniform(ish), and all in all, the whole process took around 26 hours (from store, to make, to refrigerate, to cut, to bake, to pipe and flood, to hand address).  Some of this time was of course drying time, but none the less, it was a long, tiring, but well worth it few days!

I can't write this post without a HUGE shout out to the couples from Ancaster CRC that bought us the most perfect gift for this task, with the most perfect timing!  If this didn't arrive at our house with Mom and Dad before the wedding, we never could have accomplished making everything as quickly without your kind, generous gift I have ALWAYS dreamed of.  Yes, I frequently have had dreams about....

A KITCHEN AID STAND MIXER!  I was SO thrilled when we opened this gift, looking at Graham and FULLY claiming it to be mine!  I couldn't wait to use it that night, the night Mom and I were due to start our cookie making!  Thank you so much Mr. and Mrs. Breimer, Mr. and Mrs. Visser, Mr. and Mrs. Visser, Mr. and Mrs. Voorberg and Mr. and Mrs. Bosma!!!

I don't know how long this task would have taken, if we had to do it all by hand, but I am VERY grateful that I didn't have to find out! 

Thank you so much everyone, and especially to my Mom!  I hope that you enjoyed your cookies (we continue to hear that everyone did)!  Graham has since asked me to make these again (or at least something with the dough, but a different shape), as he said, "they were the best homemade cookies he has ever eaten"!  WOW!

Mom and I ready to get started!

As you can see here, I don't have a rolling pin!  I actually do have one now, but I stil prefer to use a wine bottle, as the weight of it, really helps for an even roll!

Pre baking!  I LOVE the cookie cutter shape!  I found it at St. Lawrence Market in hopes to find either a wedding cake, or wedding bells, this one was just perfect!  It also happened to be on clearance for $1.00!  SCORE!

Mom and I in action!

The whole kitchen, every bit of counter space and the entire kitchen table was covered in cookie stuff!  Graham was not happy he had to wait till the last cookies were made to have a cookie, but we didn't want to risk having to make yet another batch if we didn't have enough (we had to do 11 batches in the end!). 

Baked!  They smelled so good, they were hard to resist!

Day 2 of cookie making!  My beauty hard at work, making royal icing!

Time to pipe and flood!

It's really ANNOYING when your royal icing starts to harden around your piping tip.  Best solution: put the tip on the outside of the bag so that you can easily unscrew it, clean it and put it back to work!

Flooded cookies waiting to dry!

Popping the air bubbles after flooding, so there is a perfect finish and shine, with no holes later on!

That was the end of day 2.  Mom and I had piped and flooded all 110 of the cookies before she needed to head home on the train.  I never could have done it without you, MOM!  Thank you so much!

Now it was onto day 3.  I had to wait for the cookies to dry before I could hand address them, as I didn't want anything to smudge.  It was a lot of hours and work to start rushing things for no reason!  That and I ran out of meringue powder for the royal icing and needed to make 2 more batches still!!!

It took me 9 hours to address all of these.  Trust me, having arthritic hands doesn't help!  The purple colour we wanted turned out so bright and fun, it was perfect!

It's hard to take action photos of yourself when you are home alone!

Some of the overflow that couldn't fit on the kitchen table, a lot of them were just "testers" to see how they tasted and how I wanted to write on them.

Yes, I was VERY proud!  It was a lot of hard work! There are 50 more in the kitchen, so it ended up being a kitchen full of baked goods for 3.5 days!

There we are!  The bride and the groom!  Head Table here we come!

Now onto day 4!  I had to wait for the writing to dry before I could bag them!  The next morning, they were all ready to be bagged, tied and ribbons to be curled!  That alone, took another whole day (cutting ribbon, tying it and curling 110 bags of cookies was not easy!)!  They turned out exactly how I wanted them in the end!

Half are bagged, now to tie and curl!

Here they are in all their glory!

Only 4 more days till Graham and I get to celebrate!

All boxed up and ready to go!!!!!!!!!

Thank you so much Mom and Ancaster CRC couples!  They turned out perfectly and everyone really seemed to enjoy them!  What a fun extra part of our wedding that I will remember forever!


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