1. Jenny Rose says...

    Another tradition I forgot to mention…this pastweekend my girlfriends daughter turned 18…she put a little plastic ballerina on the cake. My friends grandma made her “ballerina” birthday cakes every year and she kept the little ballerina and puts it on her kids cakes every year. Love that.

  2. Jenny Rose says...

    Every year my mom made us Duncan Hines (I was born in 1965 and my siblings in the 1950’s) Chocolate Fudge layer cake with homemade icing. I do the same for my kids because there’s nothing like family tradition.

  3. Robin says...

    We did this for my son’s bday last year and he loved it. My mother in law made carrot cake cupcakes and got a bag of plastic dinosaurs to put on top. So cute and the kids loved choosing which dino cupcake they would have. And now he has a little bin full of tiny dinosaurs to live in the houses he makes with blocks. Win win!

  4. This looks delicious! With the perfect frosting skills you made it awesome. Those look even better than described! YUM!

  5. Hilary says...

    Loved this idea. Theme cakes in New York just always seem so expensive. I used this idea for my son’s second birthday. Picked up a cake at Paris Baguette, added some Mickey and Minnie figurines, and he was thrilled. Maybe he’ll be a tougher critic down the road – but for what it’s worth, the grown-ups at the party loved it too.

  6. When I was a kid my parents made me the best birthday cakes. My dad would collect the toys from kids meals at burger king and they would use the toys to decorate a sheet cake. One year they made a Wizard of OZ cake. They used yellow M&Ms for the yellow brick road, and I still have all the little plastic figurines to this day!

  7. Any idea where she got the letter candles from?

  8. I love this idea! Fondant totally grosses me out anyway, it’s like horrible tasting sugar wax. why?!?

  9. Hello- thanks for the simple idea! Given that you’re doing a simple dessert series, I hope you’ll do a cake recipe. I know you had a link to a chocolate cake a few weeks back. Could I make a request for a classic carrot cake with cream cheese icing? Take good care and thanks for your efforts.

  10. Did that for my son’s 4th birthday using Star Wars figures. It was 1979.

  11. The tiny animals with party hats are so cheerful. I kind of want to put them around my house, and I don’t have any children. I think my favourite kid’s cake is the donut tower you’ve done. Maybe next year?


  12. Off topic, but are you still doing your “motherhood around the world”-series? I’m a new reader and found them very interesting. I’m Swedish and I think you should do a feature about Swedish parenting as it differs quite a lot from other countries, for example I think we have a unique opportunity to stay home with our children since we have 480 days payed parental leave (not fully payed though), almost every father takes parental leave, we have “equality bonuses” for those who divide their leave between mother/father, payed childcare, lots of actually good stuff. I read the piece on Norway but Sweden is a little bit different even if the countries ar next-door. Just a tip, but i do think it would be interesting. Just a tip! Love from a new reader, xx Maja

  13. This makes me want to be a kid again. Can’t remember the last time I got a customized cake like that! Well, maybe my wedding? Looks like a lot of fun to make =)

  14. my son does not like cake so we did a tower of donuts for his birthday cake.

  15. When I was a baby, my mom took a cake decorating class, and made the most elaborate birthday cakes for the first few years of my life. And then realized everyone “oohs” and “ahhs” and maybe snaps a quick picture, and then it gets devoured and no one thinks of it again! So since then, she’s kept it pretty simple – this is a great idea, plus the toys can be played with later or reused for another celebration.

  16. My husband always makes are boys’ birthday cakes and really enjoys doing elaborate designs. Last year it was a rocket with smoke and lights! This year we were running late with getting the cake together and happened to be at Costco. Our son asked if he could have one of their standard birthday cakes – it just had a rainbow on it. We decided why not, he obviously likes it and it would save us a lot of effort/time. He ended up bragging about it at school to his friends. Goes to show you don’t have to do a lot, just celebrate them and they will be excited.

  17. Yes! that saved my life when my youngest wanted a starwars cake for his seventh birthday! After accepting that I didn’t have any skills at all!!!!!! in the cake embelishment department… I decided to decorate it with star wars toys. :) He was happy to keep them after the party! :) It really is a very helpful idea.


  18. Love seeing this. I hate the “make your 2 year old child the most intricate, detailed cake ever” fad that seems to be in fashion. Any cake is good cake, who needs it to be shaped like anything besides a cake!! So I’m all for things that are fun and yet still just CAKE! (now i want cake)

  19. Cute! This year for my son’s 2nd birthday, we are doing a donut tower “cake” like you did for Toby’s birthday a few years ago!

  20. My mom did this for every one of our birthdays growing up! Always a rectangular sheet cake, though. Once we were a bit older, we got free rein to make the landscape out of frosting as we saw fit (green grass for a Snow White forest cake, blue water for the Little Mermaid) and place the figurines just so. I remember creating entire fantasy worlds based on those simple cake platforms!

  21. My favourite birthday cake as a kid was my 101 Dalmatians cake. It was a white cake with some black icing splotches and a red ribbon “collar” around it and it was covered in little plastic dalmatian toys! It was great cause all my little party guests got to take the figure from their slice home.

  22. Is there a favorite recipe she uses, I would like that!