Happy Saint Patrick's Day

It’s Saint Patrick’s Day!  Here in the US that mostly means wearing green, pinching people that are not wearing green, and drinking!  If you are lucky enough to live in an area with an active Irish community, it can also be a great time to learn more about Irish Cultural Heritage.

Here in the Tallahassee/Big Bend Area we are lucky to have a small but active Irish community.  Every year they put on a Saint Patrick’s Day Parade and Festival.  This year the parade was a lot of fun.  Even The Boy, who generally hates the large crowds and loud noises inherent in parades, had a great time.  That is probably because the Saint Patrick’s Day parade is a rather more intimate affair than most parades.  The Saint Patrick’s Day parade is not a big parade by any means.  There are not a lot of people in the actual parade, and there are not huge crowds attending.  From beginning to end the parade took less than 5 minutes to pass by us, and took at most 30 minutes to make the entire 0.6 mile circuit around Lake Ella.  The people in the parade that hand out candy and necklaces to the kids were able to literally hand out candy and necklaces to the kids rather than throwing it in the general direction of the kids in the crowd, and everyone was very friendly.  Generally my kids want to go back home as soon as a parade is over, so I was pleasantly surprised when they asked to stay longer.  We made our own circuit around the lake before we left, exploring the stands and booths set up for the festival along the way.

But today is Saint Patrick’s Day, which requires some celebration.  If you are staring a pint of green beer in the face, and feeling a bit green yourself, I would like to offer an alternative; The Grasshopper.  The Grasshopper is a mint chocolate flavored, green colored cocktail, that probably originated in New Orleans. It tastes a bit like melted mint chocolate chip ice-cream, and is really good!

The Grass Hopper


  • Creme de Menthe
  • Creme de Cacao
  • Half and Half, Single Creme, or Light Cream


  • Combine equal parts Creme de Menthe, Creme de Cacao, and the cream of your choice in a cocktail shaker
  • Fill the shaker with Ice
  • Shake the combined ingredients and ice until the outside of the shaker becomes frosty
  • Fill Martini Glasses with the drink, straining out the ice 
  • Garnish with Mint Leaves (Chocolate Mint is preferred if available)


Food Craft - Cake

March is National Craft Month, so I would like to start the month with a craft, food craft. This last weekend was my son's birthday, and he and my MIL created a cake of his design, a Angry Birds/Lego Star Wars Ice Planet Hoth Cake. It was adorable and he loved it.

The base was made from marshmallows, piled together like an igloo. Thick white frosting created a blanket of snow, and large pieces of sugar made it shine. Toothpicks were stuck into the lego pieces which were stuck into the cake, allowing them to hover just above the sticky "snow".

My son created the snow speeder crash landing into the enemy, and my daughter created the rebel flag.

Dragon Cake

I forgot one of the best cakes (Thanks for reminding me Gadabout Knitter)! The dragon cake that my MIL and SisIL made my son for his 2nd birthday.  So here it is....

The wings and fire are made of fruit leather - pretty clever I thought.

The party was Mighty Knights themed, and the dragon cake wasn't the only dragon at the party.

I created the "fabricy"part of the costumes for the human and animal guests, firebeard made the wooden shields.

Highly accurate armor, don't you think?

Food Craft - Cakes

While I pride myself on my ability to master nearly any craft I really set my mind to, I have not yet mastered food craft.  More specifically, I have not masted the art of making food beautiful (although I can decorate a mean cookie).  I simply don't have the love of food craft that makes it's mastery possible.  My MIL however, makes beautiful food, and I have been extremely negligent in sharing with you all the the beautiful cakes she makes for my kids on their birthdays, but no longer.  Today I will share her beautiful cakes. Most recently, she made my son a Top Gear Cake for his 5th birthday, representing his favorite Top Gear Challenge - killing a Toyota.  The cake depicts that Toyota perched on the top of a building, right before the building is demolished.  (By the way, Top Gear is a British car show that tests the merits of cars in a variety of wacky scenarios).  In this picture, my son had already removed the Toyota from the top of the tower because it was afraid it would be hurt.

Here is the truck on top of the tower block, waiting to be demolished.

My daughter wanted a simple dinosaur cake for her 6th birthday.

My son's 4th birthday was a lego party, so my MIL made a giant lego with a sheet cake and cupcakes.

For my son's 3rd birthday, my MIL made an incredible monster truck cake, complete with jumbo doughnut wheels.

I have also made a few cakes that made the cut, and I am including in this post.  The first of which is a Halloween themed cake I created for my daughter's birthday.

My favorite part is the tiny peanut butter skulls.

My daughter also had a reptile themed party where I made an ice cream turtle, and a snake cake.


All of this talk about cake has inspired me to go eat lunch, I hope you have been inspired too.