Patti’s Button Cupcakes is a love story. The story of a mother. A mother of two, mother-in-law of one, grandmother of one AND a step-mother to one, step-mother-in-law to one and a step-grandmother to two AND a role model to the half-sister of her biological daughter. Are you still with me? I’m lost and I’ve been a part of this crazy family tree for more than 20 years! I guess if you try to fit me into this part of the family tree, I’m Tiffany’s aunt on her mother’s side and the defacto aunt or great-aunt by default to the rest of the brood.
Patti is Tiffany’s step-mother. She married Tiffany’s father when Tiffany was nine-years-old, bringing a daughter and son with her from a previous marriage. Her daughter, Rhianna, was 10 and her son, Joe, was 8, and Tiffany fit right smack dab in the middle and loved having a new, larger family with siblings. Tiffany calls Patti “Mom”. Tiffany also calls her mother, Gail, “Mom”. She was raised by both during different times in her lives and maintains close relationships with both. But, I digress. Back to the “love story” part.
Patti is just one of those unique individuals – open, loving, accepting, non-judgmental, smart, patient, kind, diplomatic, caring, helpful, with a soft voice and a calming influence. And, she loves ALL of her children and grand-children unconditionally. She’s the backbone of that family, the glue that keeps them all together. And, she was an orphan.
I’ve never asked Patti about the details of that part of her life, but whatever happened in her early days made her the wonderful, strong, capable woman she is today and a role-model extraordinaire. And while she may have had some rough times in her earlier life, you would never guess that knowing her now. You would think she’d had a traditional upbringing because her family is so important to her – her family is everything to her.
And, she’s not just a mother. She’s a wife and a career woman, having worked her way up the corporate ladder in the financial sector. Working long hours throughout her career, she still works long hours to this day.
And, she makes cupcakes.
Wonderful cakes and cupcakes for her children and grandchildren at every opportunity!
If you read yesterday’s post, 15 Tips for an Easy and Stress-free Kid’s Birthday Party, you know that Princess Sweetie Pie recently turned 3-years-old and that she decided the theme for her birthday party should be Buttons. Buttons is the name of her lavender stuffed unicorn and there’s a “back story” to that name that Tiffany can share with you in a future Mommy Diary Mondays post.
So, Patti (“Grams” to the Princesses P) made Button Cupcakes for her precious step-granddaughter, Princess Sweetie Pie. She was assisted by her 33-year-old daughter Rhianna’s 9-year-old half-sister, Princess Sweet Nature (Rhianna is now Princess Sweet Nature’s legal guardian – this is a whole other story for another day) and her French bulldog, Zoey. I know – I lost you again on the family tree business! Here’s what she did:
First, bake cupcakes either from scratch or a cake mix. Patti used a Funetti Cake Mix in keeping with the “buttons” theme and baked more than 40!
Once the cupcakes had cooled completely, Patti frosted them. She used a piping bag with is a special tip and used canned frosting. For that many cupcakes, she used 2 cans of vanilla frosting. That’s Princess Sweet Nature eying the cupcakes!
Next, she made “buttons” from 4 shades of pastel fondant, rolling it out and uses 4 different size circle cutters to create 4 different sized buttons! So, darn cute! In the picture with her are Zoey the dog and Princess Sweet Nature (Patti’s daughter’s half-sister).
Patti carefully starts placing the fondant “buttons” on the cupcakes. Spoiler alert: helpers standing by for mistakes and mishaps!
Job almost completed. But, now she has to transport them to Tiffany’s house for the party!
Looks like her crew of helpers left her to pursue other opportunities!
The cupcakes arrived at the party in perfect order! The picture below was taken on top of birthday presents.
Many thanks to Tiffany’s father, Joel (Patti’s husband and my ex-brother-in-law) for the photos featuring Patti making her cupcakes. Joel is a professional photographer of great talent and likes to experiment with his iPhone. All of his photos where taken with his iPhone. You can visit Joel’s work at his website and blogs (and much of his work is on our site because he’s constantly taking wonderful photos of his granddaughters, the Princesses P) at the links below:
Oh, and here’s the recipe:
- Funetti Cake Mix
- Vanilla Frosting
- Rolled Fondant
- Make the cupcakes according to package instructions on the box of cake mix.
- Make enough for your event (i.e., more than one package of cake mix, if needed).
- Cool completely.
- When the cupcakes are cool, pipe frosting onto each so that the cupcakes look festive and professional.
- Roll out fondant per package instructions.
- Cut out circles (“buttons”) using 4 different sized circles (such as small round cookie or biscuit cutters, apple corer, etc.).
- Make circles look like “buttons” by punching holes in them.
- Allow to dry and then carefully add buttons to each cupcakes.
(other party posts)
- Decorating the Table for an Easter Celebration
- Decorating the Table for a St. Patrick’s Day Celebration
- The Charms of Afternoon Tea