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“My blog is a collection of tidbits about the things I love... sugar cookies, baking, great food, cute stuff, and life in Happy Valley. Check back often for updates!!”

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There's No Place Like Home

posted Sunday May 02, 2010 at 10:36 PM by Anne Yorks — 4 comments

I'm so happy to be back in Happy Valley. In case you're just tuning in, I spent the past week in New York City. The City. It's a wonderful place to visit, but there is no place like home.

All in all it was a great trip for our family. We accomplished what we set out to do. Plus, I did work in a little time for cupcakes! My cookie trip got postponed. Due to heavy, standstill, car honking traffic, we cancelled the trip to the cookie shop.

We were stuck behind this...a big ole pig butt. 

And, I'm not kidding, just moments before I snapped this picture, there was a rickshaw in front of us. I was just too slow to get the photo with the both of them. The rickshaw sped up faster than the car traffic. Only in NYC, I guess.

So with a big pig butt in the way, our trip to the cookie shop was pushed off to another day. I wasn't all that disappointed to miss the cookie shop because I had already enjoyed the best cupcake ever.

It came from Two Little Red Hens. 

I picked out a red velvet cupcake (upper left), carrot cupcake (upper right), and a vanilla  with buttercream icing - tinted pink. Each cupcake was $2.75. What a deal!

I got the pink cupcake for my little girl. 

It was so rich and dense that I only gave her a small sliver. Then I thought I'd better try it for 'quality control'. It was AMAZING! I hate to admit it, and this might put me in the running for worst mommy ever, but I ate the rest of her cupcake. It was that good. I felt a little bad afterwards. But did I mention how good it was?

My mom enjoyed the carrot cake cupcake and gave it two thumbs up. Toph devoured the red velvet and said it was great! I want to go back to Two Little Red Hens everyday. Plus, did I mention I got to witness a legitimate NYC argument? It wasn't soup nazi or anything. A customer wanted to order a cake for the same day. She just didn't get the 3-day advance rule at the shop. She went around and around and around. I enjoyed every moment. I smiled just like a good tourist does. I wished I had taken a photo. It was good stuff. 

So lots of traffic and a few cupcakes later, it was time to head back to Happy Valley.

Upon returning home, I was greeted by a package from Reigh Enterprises. Sharon and Ted Reigh run the business providing all sorts of printed and embroidered items. 

I had ordered a few things with the Flour Box Bakery logo. I am not disappointed! I loved EVERYTHING! I'm working on getting some photos to share with you...but I did take one to show you. Sharon popped a little surprise in the box for my little girl.

I can't even tell you how excited we were to meet the newest family member. My daughter named her new bear Flower.

Here she is with Flower in her big girl bed on our first night home. Ahhhh. There's no place home.

Okay...I've got a serious amount of cookies to decorate. So this post is ending. But, I promise some great cookie pics are coming. 

Don't forget, Monday, May 3rd, is the Mother's Day order deadline. You can check out the cute collection of teacups and teapots here.

Have a sweet day,


P.S. I'm pretty sure we could solve the world economic crisis if the following fine was actually enforced. Don't Honk. $350 Penalty. Ha. Someone has a sense of humor.

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Greetings from the Upper East Side

posted Tuesday Apr 27, 2010 at 02:21 PM by Anne Yorks — 4 comments

Hello! I'm happy to report that I have navigated our family safely to our hotel room on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. I'm a crazy driver and I fit in really well here!

We haven't had a chance to do any cookie-ing or cupcaking yet...but I think that is on the plan after today's naptime.

It's been raining cats and dogs here. What a downpour! Odd, because before we left for NYC, it was raining cats and dogs at Flour Box!

This is a cute Dalmatian Cookie I did for a veterinarian consultant.

They also ordered cat cookies too!

Just look at that chubby tabby cat cookie. I love the hair puff on her chest! And did you notice her face?

It just makes me want to cuddle up with this kitty cat! I love her!

Recently, I also got an order for brown dog cookies to look like the PBS character Lomax, the Hound of Music.

That's Lomax on the left. And here is the cookie version...

I heard he was a big hit!

Not a whole lot to report from the big city as of yet. We did have a run-in with this...

Do not adjust your computer screen...this is a plaid car, and no it's not a cookie. I really wonder who drives this car. I think we could be good friends.

We have also had some playground time, in between the raindrops. 

This is taxi driving 101, taught by my two-year-old.

Then we enjoyed a PB & J lunch at the window seat!

We were looking for doggies.

We do have a view of the East Side River...

And some crowded apartment buildings that probably cost thousands of dollars to rent each month (and you can see the reflection of my camera in the window - I circled it!)

That's all for now. We have a pretty busy schedule the next few days, so I won't be able to update until Thursday. Until then...

Have a sweet day,

PS - I have received several emails from customers! Yes! I can do your projects. I just can't send email right now. I think it's because my computer is using the internet on a public line. I will be in touch with you as soon as I figure our this email snafu. Public internet settings always make my computer act a little wonky. Sorry!

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Pinkies Up!

posted Saturday Apr 24, 2010 at 08:32 PM by Anne Yorks — 2 comments

Hello to any new readers that joined through the CookiersRUs yahoo group! I am loving all the ideas and fun dialog between everyone! I have added so many new blogs to my reader and they are wonderful! Welcome to all!

I am so excited to introduce everyone to this year's Mother's Day cookie collection...but first, I have an important announcement:

  Flour Box Bakery will be *Closed* Next Week 

Next week, I will be taking some time to do a little product research in New York City. I will be unable to process/ship orders from Saturday, April 24 through Friday, April 30. I apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. I will resume the normal baking schedule on Saturday, May 1st. Thank you in advance for your patience. I will try to give few updates from the road on the FBB Facebook Fanpage and Tidbits. 

Our newest cookie collection for Mother’s Day has been added to the site today!

Inspired by the most amazing mom on the planet (my mom), I have created a special teacup/teapot cookie collection for Mother’s Day. This collection will include 14 cookies: 5 teacup cookies, 5 teapot cookies, and 4 bite-sized daisy cookies. Even though I am closed next week, orders may be placed for Mother’s Day today until May 3rd. Please note that orders for Mother’s Day will ship between May 4th – May 6th. Here are a few up close shots of the detail on the 5 teacup/teapot sets. 

The hearts sets...


and the dots sets...


And my favorite two cookies of the collection:

My mom loves tea. She has a cup every night while reading a book. For Christmas I found the neatest teacup and saucer set at Home Reflections on Calder Way in State College, PA (it's just a lovely store!).

Isn't that saucer something? I saw a plain white version of this set at the Titanic exhibit in Vegas last fall. The exhibit was at the Luxor. They had artifacts that had been recovered from the Titanic wreckage. I noticed the teacup and saucer right away because it looked so practical and it looked like something my mom would love. A nice big area on the saucer for a piece of toast or a cookie.

A few weeks after the Vegas trip I stumbled upon this set. It is imported from England. My mom flipped over it! 

She also flipped over these cookies : ) I have a wonderful mom!!

Gotta go pack up my suitcase. My next post will be from the road! 

Have a sweet day,

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I Forgot to Mention

posted Thursday Apr 22, 2010 at 07:50 AM by Anne Yorks — 5 comments

Yesterday, I had a delivery on Penn State's campus at the Hintz Alumni Building. After the delivery, my daughter and I hung out at the little pond outside the building and enjoyed the scene. She loved the fish, the ducks, walking over the bridge, stepping across the rocks, and looking for turtles - although we never actually found a turtle. But, the best part of the trip was watching the ducklings. They looked brand new, so small and fuzzy and so sweet. I love making deliveries, especially to the Alumni Center. 

I know I have been updating my blog a little less frequently, but I just wrapped up a very busy two weeks. Lots of birthday parties, bridal showers, corporate gifts, Administrative Professionals Day, and web orders going on. I felt so excited to be a part of all these events and I have a few great new cookies to post on the blog. I think I'm also going to add a few cookies to the website product line.

But first, I have something to tell you. Nothing 'major big' or earth shattering. But I'm always in such a big rush when blogging that I forget a few of the details. So I decided I'll do one big catch-up on any items that may have been omitted by mistake from previous posts. Bear with me.

First, I forgot I wanted to share this photo on the ladybug post.

This is one tray of the ladies. Looking pretty all in a row. These mini-ladybug cookies are only an inch big. So to get the eyes, smile and dots it took a steady hand and the smallest tip I own, the #1. I have seen a #0 tip, but have not used it. Maybe I should check that out for the next order of mini-ladybugs.

I made 80 of these and I felt blind afterward. But, no pain no gain. And look how cute they are. 

Okay, ladybugs, check them off my list. 

Next up Monster Truck cookies. Do you remember these? I made them for a birthday party a few weeks ago.

Here's a pic of the cookie...

Free-handing circles is not one of my strengths. I have been practicing a lot. But I really wanted these to be consistent, so I decided to cheat a little bit. I wanted to show this during that post, but I focused so much on the luster dust, that I totally forgot this part.

So to get these 'hubcap' circles consistent I used my mini-circle cookie cutter (funnily enough, the same one I used to make the ladybug cookies!). When the cookies came out of the oven, and they were still warm and a little soft, I gently pushed the cookie cutter into the cookie to make a little mark. I didn't push too hard. I didn't want to cut out the center. 

Then I was able to pipe a nice circle around the mark from the cutter. See? So I cheated just a little bit. I know you were losing sleep over this. So I'm glad I could finally put it to rest.

Next up, St. Patrick's Day. Seems like ages ago, right? When I was prepping my orders I decided to make a few changes to the cookie designs. I wanted to post an update right away...but the time just got away from me. Oye.

So here it goes.

I updated my leprechaun. I love Irish eyebrows (weird I know), and I wanted to make them just a little more prominent. I also thought he ought to be wearing a green hat instead of black.

Here's the original and the new one side by side....


I also corrected a little mistake on the pot o' gold. Take a look...


Do you see the difference? The apostrophe was in the wrong place. I updated the photos with this new corrected cookie.

Here's the St. Patrick's Day Collection with the new leprechaun and the new pot o' gold!

And now, if you stayed with me this long. Here's a little sneak peak on this new stuff I'm trying called Disco Dust. I did do a really great cookie with it, but I was in such a rush to deliver the order that I did not have time for a photo shoot. Disco Dust is edible glitter. I have several colors, silver, rainbow, red and pink. Here's a red example...

This is the top of a Ruby ring. I don't think the picture is all that clear, but I think you can get the idea of the sparkle power of this stuff. It's off the charts! I hope to have a few better examples in the coming weeks. But this was too exciting not to share.

And finally...just for fun...a little family photo shoot. Our family is photo challenged. We took 25 pictures this easter to get just one good one.

The first with my whole family....

That's Toph and I on the left. My sister and mom on the right. And the kids in the middle. We are in our living room. That framed pictured in the back is something I made. Maybe I'll do a separate post on that some day.

Then we wanted a picture with just the three of us...here's where the fun started.

First my eyes were closed...

Then the little one forgot to smile...

Then Daddy said something funny ...  and the little one looked over.

(Did you notice that Nemo, sheep, and kitty cat have now joined the photo? Look close and you'll see them!)

And then my eyes were closed again...    

and again...

Did I mention we were using the camera timer for these photos? Yeah...so each time Toph had to get up and set the timer and then run back to the sofa. It was so fun.

But, finally, we were all looking, smiling and ready for the Easter photo (of course by this point, the Easter baskets were added to the photo)...

And then things just got silly...


I guess we all had too much sugar that day!

So that's it! I think you're updated on all the things I forgot to mention. I have a ton of great cookies to share with you over the next few weeks...so stay tuned as I get them up on Tidbits!

Have a sweet day,

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Handmade with Love

posted Saturday Apr 17, 2010 at 05:14 PM by Anne Yorks — 3 comments

Prepare yourself to be amazed.

A month ago, I received a mystery package in the mail from my Aunt Annie. My sweet Aunt Annie. Mother of four. Master of all things creative, crafty, and artsy. She is married to my mom's younger brother, my Uncle Tim. These people are just cool, good people. So when I saw the box, I instantly got excited about what might be inside. 

Topher was not home when the box arrived. And, I had a feeling that I would want to open it with someone, so I decided to wait until he got home later that evening. I wish we had video of my reaction when I saw my special surprise. There was a lot of jumping, ooohhhhhing, and I'll admit it, a little bit of squealing.

My wonderful Aunt Annie made me my very own Flour Box Bakery Apron!!!!

Just look at it! It's amazing, right? I called my Aunt Annie the very next day to share my gratitude and excitement for the gift. After all, this was my first piece of attire with my logo on it ... and it was perfect!

My Aunt Annie explained how she made the logo look so amazing.

This logo is not printed...it was done 100 percent by hand! My cousin Ellen helped my Aunt Annie resize my logo to exactly what she needed for the pocket size and printed it. Then my Aunt Annie cut out each letter and traced it on the apron pocket. Did you hear me? She cut each letter and TRACED it! Look at them. They are perfect looking. 

Then using fabric marker and fabric paint she filled in the big pink flour - oops, I mean flower - and the letters. I really can't get over the perfection of the work. Not a single thing is out of place. Amazing.

Plus, Not sure if you noticed the design of the apron, but for a busy baker, it's just right. Here's why.

1. The size of it is perfect. The length goes just below my knees. That's full coverage and I need it. I can get messy in the kitchen.
2. The neckline is adjustable so that I can wear it forever no matter how I shrink or grow.
3. There are four pockets...one on the chest and three at the bottom. Since my customers call me throughout the day, I can now keep my phone close and safe in my chest pocket at all times. Plus, those lower pockets are great for when taking photos. I can store my camera, batteries and other props in the pockets for when I need to make a trip downstairs to the light tent.
4. I love the material. It's a denim apron and I can already tell it will last my lifetime. The sewing work is impeccable!
5. It's completely washable. I have washed my apron so many times since it arrived and the logo and material look brand new!

I don't know if you own a business, but the first time seeing your logo on anything is quite exciting. To have it on a handmade item is just so touching!

Here's the apron's label:

And here's a picture of me wearing my cute apron while holding a tray of cookies. 

Kind of cool. Things handmade with love (like aprons or cookies) are just a special kind of awesome.

Thank you, Aunt Annie, so much for my amazing gift! I felt so spoiled and special. You're the best!

Have a sweet day,

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