Cora turns 12: Bird Nest Cake

We officially celebrated Cora’s 12th birthday yesterday! It is so hard to believe that 12 years has gone by since she was born in the wee hours of the morning in Austin, TX.


We are so thankful for her and the sweet girl that God made her to be. Fitting with her love for nature and birds, we had a little party last evening with a bird nest themed cake while watching the sunset from the front deck.



The bunting is 12 simple rectangles of burlap that I strung on jute twine. I printed photos of her last 11 birthdays and pinned one to each burlap piece. It took all of 15 minutes so it was a quick yet cute way to decorate. We enjoyed remembering each birthday, the theme if there was one, and where we were living at the time.


I have not been buying wrapping paper much lately (we are trying hard to keep from purchasing unnecessary items). Jeff had bought end rolls of newsprint from the local newspaper last summer to use as packing material when we were shipping a bunch of breakables. End rolls are the last leftover couple inches of the paper newspapers are printed on. From what I have read, the ends of the rolls aren’t easily used and every newspaper business we have gone to has their end rolls for sale for super cheap. Our home will probably never be without a roll of the stuff. We use it so often (large kids drawings, wrapping paper, packaging paper, table clothes, etc.) and a roll lasts forever.


This weekend marks one of our last with Sara, the grad student who has been living with us for most of the last year. She graduates today! We have enjoyed having Sara stay with us as she completed her final year of school and internship. Congratulations, Sara! Sara gave Cora this really neat handmade journal, the cover of which is made from a vintage book about Songbirds. Very unique and the perfect gift for our bird loving girl.


Sara and Noah helped me make the decorations for the bird nest cake. After trying fondant (and loving it except for the time involved) I thought I’d try making flowers and leaves with taffy candy this year. An idea I saw on pinterest.



It worked pretty well! We rolled out cheap dollar store taffy and rolled it into flowers. The green was used for the leaves. I used tootsie rolls for the nest. By slathering on melted chocolate chips and popping it in the freezer, the nest was strong enough to keep its shape just long enough. I left it in the freezer til the last possible moment.


The bird was a feather bluejay from Micheal’s. I wasn’t going to try to make that!


Ah. Seeing these photos makes me nostalgic and this was just yesterday! Reminds me that each day is a gift: to find the joy and love each other each day because we don’t get them back. Love you Cora and I am so excited to see how God continues to grow and shape you each year.