It was a day of waiting and anxious window watching… I ordered something online and couldn’t stop myself checking the window every so often for a ‘sign’ the van was on its way. I don’t know why I always do that. It doesn’t make them come any quicker. If it did, we’d all be flapping our curtains like bats and fleets of delivery drivers would be screeching to a halt all over the shop.
The waiting did give me time to get on with some odds and ends like making sugar bells. I’ve had a set of three cake decorating bell molds for many years and thought it might be a nice idea to make a few for this year’s cakes. They’re very easy to do – in principle – but it took me several attempts to get the sugar / water mix right (for every couple of heaped tablespoons of sugar add water a few drops at a time until it feels like damp sand). Pack the mold and gently pat down with the back of a spoon.
Then, another little wrinkle learned the hard way – tap the mold upside down on the worktop or other hard surface, until you see the sugar has shaken free of the mold – you should see a bit of a jiggle.
Then, holding the mold upside down, place something flat on the bottom – I used glass coasters – turn them the right way up and carefully but quickly lift the mold up and away! If you try to do it slowly, you’ll get the shakes or a fine tremor and you’ll knock the sugar and when that happens it will collapse like a sandcastle. Trust me, I learned a thing or two about sugar molds this morning.
They’re also messy. I ended up making them in the sink so that the spilled sugar could just be rinsed away afterwards. Even so, before I’d realised that the sink was the way to go, there was sugar schmutz everywhere. Still, I’m pleased with how they’ve turned out and once I got the knack they were easy to do. I’m going to use the silver balls as clappers (will attach with royal icing) and will probably glue (with icing) a bow or some fondant holly and berries on top. Still to decide on a real theme for either of the cakes so will have a think and see what appeals (very bad pun totally intended – sorry!). I am helping a friend out with some snow-boarding penguins next week so that sounds fun but am tending towards something old-fashioned and ‘homely’ for mine this year.
Anyway, with sugar everywhere the kitchen got vacked and mopped. That’s a good thing, really.
With no delivery in sight I got on with mods to the 3D church I’m making:
The one on the left was the centre-gable one that I miscalculated and ended up with the porch sitting some 10 mm or so below the bell tower… Tweaked and modded (the one on the right) but still wasn’t happy with it so set the bell tower over to one end of the roof with different windows. But still not happy – a few more tweaks… I changed the doors so they would fold in and added a few fancy bits so just need to cut it out and assemble it. I love making them up! No time to get that done today though. And out tonight but maybe I’ll get a chance tomorrow night.
Finally, had some fun with Photoshop:
The 3D function in PS is fairly nifty and the above was a simple rendering of my copyright digi stamp onto a 3D donut.
The delivery didn’t arrive so more curtain flapping tomorrow. The snow didn’t settle and the pavements are just plain wet. I DO hope it snows for Christmas Day though. Well, time to make tea and get ready….
Bye for now,