This past weekend I went home to see family and also celebrate the birthday of a very special girl in my life. Growing up in Steamboat I got involved with a fabulous organization called Partners in Routt County. They pair an adult mentor with a youth in town, very similar to Big Brother, Big Sister. I did it when I was in high school and then got another partner when I moved back after college. My partner and I, we’ll just caller her M, started our partnership when she was 8 years old, she was in 3rd grade. Our partnership lasted for almost two years and then I moved out of Steamboat. The decision to move was even harder knowing that would be the end of my mentoring partnership with this fabulous little girl. She had really become a part of our family, coming over for dinner multiple nights a week. We worked on homework, went camping, hiking, tried out snowboarding and many more adventures together. I had seen her move through elementary school, gain more confidence and really start to become a young lady. When it became official that I was leaving my Mom did an amazing thing and asked Partners if she could take over the partnership. Not only was this a relief to me knowing that I would see M when I came home to visit but it also was great to know she would be a in great hands. My Mom really invested her time and took the partnership to a new level by really involving M in our family’s day to day life. As you can see she is a very big part of my life and of my families life as well. In 10 days this little lady is turning 13. It is hard to believe that she is a teenager now, time moves way too fast!
M is full of life and loves the color pink, she is also full of personality so I knew that I had to make a cake to reflect that. I went to Michael’s an bought some hot pint fondant and started to brainstorm. I came up with the idea to do a zebra cake with a hot pink base and black zebra print which seemed very appropriate for a new teen. The cake was very simple vanilla buttermilk cake with a strawberry butter cream frosting.I have found that with butter cream I typically do two cups of powder sugar for every one stick of butter (8 T), a dash of milk and some strawberry jam. Since the outside was going to be very eccentric I wanted the inside to be simple.
The cake took no time to make and the frosting was fun and not too sweet. I did three 8″ cakes to make it a triple layer. I rolled the fondant out and placed a hot pink base over the cake. Then I started cutting out black zebra stripes and started strategically placing them on the fondant. I made a giant number 13 out of fondant as well to be at the center. I do have to say, besides the mountain bike cake this is one of my favorite cakes I have done. I had a blast putting it together and could not wait to give it to M.
On Saturday we went up to the mountain in Steamboat. Half the group hiked and other half mountain biked, we had lunch mid mountain and then hiked down to have cake at home. When I brought out the cake you could tell M was very excited about her over-the-top cake. Seeing her smile made it worth all the work. We all enjoyed a piece and she had half a cake to take home to her family.