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Girls Movie Night with OREO | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

Best Friends Movie Night

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser.
All opinions are mine alone. #EnterTheWonderVault #CollectiveBias

Friends, I’m so excited for this post because it’s sponsored by two of my favorite brands, OREO and Kroger!

Girls Movie NiGirls Movie Night with OREO | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.comght with OREO | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com
Serving size for OREO sandwich cookies is 2 cookies.

Best Friends Movie Night

Hosting a Best Friends Movie Night doesn’t have to be a huge undertaking. It’s really simple and doesn’t have to cost a fortune! My friend invited me to her house for a movie night and it was amazing! She told me to check out Home Cinema installation in London to get a home cinema installed and it looks great. Follow these guidelines and enjoy a Best Friends Movie Night of your own!

  1. Call your best friend and invite her over!
  2. Go shopping for snacks!
    One of my favorite stores to shop at is Kroger. There are things in Kroger that I just can’t find anywhere else… which is seriously why I love it so much! One of my favorite snacks is anything OREO! At Kroger, you can find all your favorite OREO products on cookie aisle!
    Girls Movie Night with OREO | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com
    For this Movie Night, I decided on two of my favorite flavors, OREO Red Velvet and OREO Birthday Cake, which I bought at the Kroger in Richmond, VA. Life wouldn’t be as “Wonderfilled” without OREO sandwich cookies. #EnterTheWonderVault However there are a variety of Wonder Vault OREO sandwich cookies to choose from including:
    Red Velvet 12.2 oz
    Cinnamon Bun 12.2 oz
    Birthday Cake 15.25 oz
    Salted Caramel 10.1oz (available 6/17/17)Girls Movie Night with OREO | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com
    Find your local Kroger/Kroger Family of Stores to get your OREO sandwich cookies here!
  3. Set Up for Movie Night
    I love getting things ready for parties and events. Making it all pretty is one of my favorite things.

    Girls Movie Night with OREO | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com
    Serving size for OREO sandwich cookies is 2 cookies.

    I kept it simple for this movie night. I placed a few rows of OREO sandwich cookies on a platter, grabbed a bowl of popcorn and a pretzels, and two glasses of milk.A few fun napkins, blankets, pillows and our favorite movie is all that was left to get ready!

  4. Enjoy!
    Now is the fun part! Get under those blankets, put the movie on and have fun!Girls Movie Night with OREO | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.comWhether your favorite way to eat an OREO is to dunk it or twist it, OREO sandwich cookies make the perfect snack for movie night!My favorite is dunking!! I love how soft the OREO gets when it’s soaked in milk. So yum!Girls Movie Night with OREO | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.comMy second favorite way to eat an OREO… in a cupcake! (Did I mention that I have a recipe for OREO Red Velvet cupcakes? Of course I do!)

    Red Velvet Oreo Cupcakes | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

    Buy One, Get One

    Buy one Wonder Vault flavor OREO and get a free MILKA OREO Chocolate Candy Bar at Kroger grocers; offer valid 6/14 – 6/20.

    In-store Kroger demos happening 6/15-6/18. Demos will present Kroger-exclusive recipes, information on the newest OREO flavors, Limited Edition varieties, the new MILKA OREO Chocolate Candy Bar, fun facts about the history of OREO and Kroger, and much, much more.

Girls Movie Night with OREO | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com
And let me tell you why I’m excited about this BOGO offer! MILKA is one of Europe’s leading chocolate brands, made with milk from the European Alps and the finest cocoa bans. The ALPS!!!!

Crunchy bits of OREO + Crème Filling + Rich MILKA Chocolate Candy… you can’t go wrong with this combo!

I lived in Bavaria for 5 years and grew to love all things MILKA! Seriously, I am so excited about this BOGO offer!!!!

Girls Movie Night with OREO | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

So head over to Kroger, grab your favorite OREO sandwich cookies (don’t forget the BOGO MILKA OREO Chocolate Candy Bar) and enjoy a Best Friends Movie Night!

Movie Night Photos by Fanette Rickert Photography

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

How to Host a Paw Patrol Party at School

Have you ever hosted a child’s birthday party at home? Have you ever wondered how to stop 15 sugar-filled children running around your kitchen and climbing on your gloss dining table and chairs? Instead of hosting your child’s next birthday at home, why not bring the party to their school?! Use this How to Host a Paw Patrol Party at School guide for inspiration and recipes!

Sometimes hosting a party for your kids can be stressful! Figuring out where and when to host the party to get the greatest number of children to attend can be a chore! If your child’s school allows it, have their next party at their school. You can speak to the school about what the party will involve. If you suggest the idea of having inflatables for the kids to play on in the playground and the school agrees with it, you could get in touch with that family friend who is a kids party planner and speak to them and see if you can use the inflatables that they purchased through companies like JungleJumps. The earlier you plan this party, the more you can do to make this party so much fun for the kids! School parties mean that all your child’s friends will be there, plenty of tables and chairs, plus teachers to help! For Matty’s 5th birthday this year, we had his Paw Patrol Party at his school! It was one of the most fun parties I’ve ever hosted for him so I wanted to create a guide so that you can host a Paw Patrol Party at school too!

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

In this guide, you’ll get ideas for…

  • Party Shirts
  • Table Settings & Party Decor
  • Snack Ideas
  • Dessert Table w/ Recipes
  • Party Games & Favors
  • Thank you Note/Group Photo

Let’s get started!

Party Shirts

Having your child wear a shirt in the theme of the party just adds another simple dimension of fun to the entire look at feel of the event.

In the past, I’ve done matching shirts for my entire immediate family, but this year I decided to just get the birthday boy one shirt of his own to wear.

A few weeks before the party, I searched on ETSY for a birthday shirt in the Paw Patrol theme that Matty could wear to his party. I contacted Mending Life Together and asked if they could make Matty’s shirt and get it to me in time.

They worked with me to get it done and I had the shirt in time for the party!

Table Settings & Party Decor

I’m a firm believer in saving myself time, energy and stress. Which is exactly why I don’t stress about buying out Party City of plates, napkins, cups, balloons, and confetti in the theme of my party!

Supplies

At the party store save yourself the hassle and buy the following on theme:

  • Plates and napkins*
  • Table covers*
  • Silverware & cups*
  • Balloons
  • Cake/cupcake stand
  • Tissue paper tassels
  • Confetti

*disposable

Get creative with the items you choose. They all don’t have to be on theme exactly, however they should all be in the same color family.

Table Settings

At the Paw Patrol Party, I set the table with a red table cover so that the plates and napkins would stand out against it. I choose blue cups to offset the red add another color to the table.

Simple and perfect for 5 year olds!

Party Decor

Planning the decor for a party for 5-year-old kids is pretty easy. They are really only impressed if their favorite characters are plastered everywhere! I only care how easy it is to clean up after the party!

Two balloon bouquets lined each side of the table to add height to the overall look and feel of the party. I also sprinkled Paw Patrol themed confetti across the center of the table & dessert table to add a little more fun!

Snack Ideas

Since this party was happening during snack time at school, I knew that my snack should be fun but also have a healthy component.

For this party, I served:

  • Paw Patrol fruit snacks
  • Paw shaped Cheetos
  • Mini apples
  • Blue juice

Dessert Table

Every party I host always has some type of dessert table display. For this Paw Patrol Party, I kept it simple since we were at school.

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.comI improvised with shelving and furniture that was already in the classroom to create my Dessert Table! I cut a Paw Patrol plastic table cover to fit the shelving and sprinkles confetti over the top.

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

To add height and dimension to the table, I placed a small box under the table cover in the center in turn creating a higher focal point for the cake which was the centerpiece of the display.

The Cake

The cake is always the star of the party. Candles are put on top and the first slice is always for the birthday boy. Since I don’t work a lot with fondant or modeling chocolate, I decided to buy a Paw Patrol toy to top the cake.

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

Frosting the cake in a solid color and adding simple piping embellishments allowed the topper of the cake to shine and still look clean and professional!

RECIPE

The cake is a funfetti box cake mix with a homemade chocolate frosting and whipped vanilla buttercream tinted blue on the outside. The red balls on top are gum balls I got at in the bulk section at the party store.

The Cupcakes

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

RECIPE

The same funfetti box cake mix was used for the cupcakes. I baked the cupcakes in Paw Patrol liners I found at the party store. The cupcakes are topped with the same chocolate frosting used on the cake and cookies.

The Cookies

One of the easiest ways to create another dessert on theme of your party is to make roll & cut sugar cookies using a themed cookie cutter! For this Paw Patrol Party I used a dog bone shape cutter and frosted the cookies in chocolate frosting.

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

I displayed the dog bone cookies on a cake stand with blue ribbon to tie in more colors from the party.

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

RECIPE

The cookies were made with my tried and true sugar cookie recipe and topped with chocolate frosting (the same used in the cake & cupcakes). I used a Wilton #4 piping tip to outline and fill the cookies with frosting.

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

Party Games & Favors

I know how short kid’s attention spans can be so I combined the party favors and games into one activity.

I set up three stations for the kids to go to.

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

Station 1:

Paw Patrol themed small toys, games, rules, rings, etc from the party store.
Small paper bags and markers.
Each child will write their name on the bag then answer a fun/silly question before getting to pick out 2-3 items from each bowl.

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

Station 2:

Paw Patrol themed candy plus bulk candy in the colors of the party – all from the party store.
Small paper bags and markers.
Each child will write their name on the bag then answer a fun/silly question before getting to pick out 2-3 items from each bowl.

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

Station 3:

Paw Patrol temporary tattoos from the party store.

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

Thank You Note & Group Picture

At the conclusion of the party, arrange the children with the balloons for a fun group picture! This photo can be printed and included in the thank you notes to all the children who attended the party!

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

Final Thoughts

Since this party was at school and on a quick timeline (only an hour for the party), I had to be realistic about the activities I had planned. If I would have had another hour to fill, I would have included an arts/crafts project and a group game that got them up and moving.

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

The kids had a great time and the teachers were super happy they had an easy Friday afternoon. Really, the most important thing is that my son Matty felt special.

At the end of the party he hugged me and said, “Mom, you’re the best.” So yeah, I consider this party a success!

Paw Patrol Party | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

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My Favorite Birthday Cake - Espresso Chocolate Cake filled with Raspberry and topped with Whipped Vanilla Buttercream | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

My Favorite Birthday Cake

Rich chocolate espresso cake filled with fresh raspberry and topped with whipped vanilla buttercream make this My Favorite Birthday Cake!  And I didn’t even have to make it!

My Favorite Birthday Cake - Espresso Chocolate Cake filled with Raspberry and topped with Whipped Vanilla Buttercream | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.comIt’s been at least 15 years since anyone has made me a cake for my birthday.  My mom used to make me one every year until I became an adult and then I typically made my birthday cake myself.

(Pardon the camera phone pictures… I wasn’t planning on posting this recipe!

This year, however, my husband asked if he and the kids could make me a birthday cake and I immediately answered YES.

With one caveat…

… he had to use my favorite cake recipe from my blog!

My Favorite Birthday Cake - Espresso Chocolate Cake filled with Raspberry and topped with Whipped Vanilla Buttercream | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.comHe said no problem and printed out the recipe from the link I gave him.   Dave has watched and helped me so many times over the lat 7-8 years in the kitchen that I knew he had the skills to bake.

What I didn’t anticipate was how delicious the cake would turn out.  In fact, it was so good that I didn’t share any of the leftovers with my family for the days after my birthday.

Nope!  That cake was all mine!

My Favorite Birthday Cake - Espresso Chocolate Cake filled with Raspberry and topped with Whipped Vanilla Buttercream | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.comMy Favorite Birthday Cake features a dense, rich, chocolate cake flavored with coffee and espresso.

Inside the cake is a compote made with fresh raspberries and citrus.  I could really eat that compote with a spoon… or on toast… or on ice cream… or off my fingers.

On the outside of the cake was a perfectly sweet, whipped, light and fluffy vanilla buttercream.  The secret to this buttercream is the heavy whipping cream.

I don’t make any of my frosting without heavy cream… it truly makes all the difference!

With that said… I hope you make this cake for yourself some day.  It is truly heavenly!

My Favorite Birthday Cake

Yield: 12-16
Prep Time: 10 hours
Cook Time: 23 hours
Total Time: 1 days 9 hours

Instructions

Chocolate Espresso Cake:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F degrees. Grease and flour 2 8in cake pans.
  2. In a medium sauce pan, melt the butter. Add the coffee, espresso powder, cocoa powder, and vanilla and whisk until combined. Set aside to cool slightly.
  3. In a large bowl, sift together the sugar, flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together the sour cream and the eggs. SLOWLY add a few tablespoons of the chocolate mixture to the sour cream and eggs. Whisk to combine. In a slow stream, whisk in the remaining chocolate mixture until combined completely.
  5. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour in wet. Using a whisk, stir until no more lumps remain.
  6. Divide the batter evenly into the prepared pans. Each pan should get half of the batter. Bake 23-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before removing from the pans to cool on a wire rack.
  7. Once the cakes have cooled, but are still warm, using a cake leveler to cut off the round mound on the top of the cake. Make sure all four layers are the same size.
Raspberry Filling
  1. In a large pan, melt the butter.
  2. Add the raspberries, sugar and lime and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Stir continuously so that the raspberries begin to break down.
  3. Add the corn starch and stir to combine. Continue to cook until the raspberries thicken, about 2 minutes.
  4. Stir in the salt.
  5. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely before filling cake.
Whipped Vanilla Buttercream:
  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer, cream the butter until smooth.
  2. One cup at a time, add the powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
  3. Mix in the vanilla extract and pinch of salt.
  4. Add enough heavy cream until you reach your desired consistency. You're looking for light and soft but still holds its shape.
  5. Mix on high for about 3-5 minute until light and fluffy.
Assembly
  1. Place one layer of cake on a cake stand/board.  Trim the top until it is flat.
  2. Pipe a small border of frosting around the outside edge of the cake.  Fill the middle with the raspberry mixture.
  3. Trip the top of the second cake layer until flat.  Gently press it trimmed side down onto the raspberry layer.
  4. Pipe or spread the remaining frosting onto the outside edge of the cake and smooth out with a spatula.
  5. Decorate as desired.

 

US Army Birthday Cake | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

US Army Birthday Cake

Last month I had the privilege of making the US Army Birthday Cake for their 241st birthday party hosted by the USO Warrior & Family Center at Fort Belvoir, VA!

US Army Birthday Cake | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

When the USO Warrior & Family Center at Fort Belvoir asked me if I’d be willing to make the birthday cake for the Army’s 24th birthday party, you don’t say no… even if you’ve never made a sheet cake before!

It’s not like I’ve never made a cake before, so I thought a sheet cake wouldn’t be too difficult.  I ordered an edible image from a vendor on ETSY of the official US Army birthday logo and bought supplies in yellow and black to match the Army colors!

US Army Birthday Cake | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

If I were to do it again, I’d cut the image square and pipe a frosting border around it so it didn’t stick out as much against the frosting.  Also, I probably wouldn’t put the black sugar crystals on it because with the heat they ended up melting and just looking messy.

However, I was the only one who seemed to notice these things and everyone else raved at how awesome the cake was!

US Army Birthday Cake | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

The Fort Belvoir Garrison Commander and her staff were on hand to celebrate the Army’s birthday and to officially cut the cake along with the President of the USO Metro and the owners of the Montgomery Inn Boathouse Restaurant from Cincinnati, OH.

US Army Birthday Cake | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

The cake itself was dark chocolate cake on the bottom and classic white cake on top with fresh raspberry filling all covered in whipped cream buttercream frosting.  It was a HUGE hit and honestly one of my favorite tasting cakes I’ve ever made!

US Army Birthday Cake | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

I also made 300 red, white and blue cupcakes for the party, but I already shared the details of those a couple of weeks ago.

It came as a complete surprise to me, but about half way through the event, the President of USO Metro and the owner of the Montgomery Inn Boathouse Restaurant presented me with a certificate of appreciation for all my time and work serving the military members of our community.

US Army Birthday Cake | The JavaCupcake Blog https://javacupcake.com

It has always been my honor and complete pleasure to serve the military community, especially at the USO.  The USO has done so much for my family over the years that it’s the least I can do to give back to them and our community.

If you’re in the military and are close to Washington DC, I highly recommend checking out the USO.  They are a great resource for the community and have so many amazing activities for service members and families!

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