Monday, August 17, 2009

Monkey Business

Banana Cupcakes

Check out the frosting on these banana cupcakes. Super smooth and creamy, cream cheese buttercream … so delicious and creamy. Did I mention creamy? I also used a little added yellow to tint the otherwise cream colored creamy cream cheese frosting … you know, just to enhance the senses. I’m tricky like that.

Banana Cupcakes
1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 large ripe banana (or almost 1 cup)
1/2 cup whole milk, room temperature

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line cupcake tray with 12 baking cups.
  • Sift together flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl with a wire whisk.
  • Cream butter and sugar in a mixer for about four minutes.
  • Add banana and mix until combined.
  • Add eggs and vanilla and mix until combined.
  • Add half the flour in three additions alternating with milk in two additions. Scrape down the sides with each addition.
  • Bake for about 12-15 minutes or until done.

Creamy Cream Cheese Frosting
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 box (1lb) of confectioner’s sugar
Buttercup yellow icing color (optional)

  • Cream butter and cream cheese in mixer until thoroughly combined
  • Add vanilla. Then Add sugar in small batches until combined and creamy.
  • Add a small amount of buttercup yellow icing color to frosting and mix.

Now you can eat them just like this or …

Confetti Cupcakes

Party them up a little bit with small pastel colored confetti sprinkles … just because it’s that kind of day.

But, these banana cupcakes need something else… something to keep them company.

A little friend maybe?


Yes definitely.

But my little monkey needs a friend, too.

Cupcake Toppers

So this little piggy and teddy joined in on the fun.

Cupcake Toppers

And so did my favorite martian, robot and bumblebee.

My head is actually going to explode from all this cuteness.

Bumblebee Cupcake Topper

Could these be any more adorable? Look at that bumblebee bottom.

Cupcake Towers from Lollipop Workshop

Why yes, yes they can! These cupcake toppers are also candleholders. I’m officially in love here.

Cupcake Toppers from Lollipop Workshop

And it gets even better. They want to be your friends, too. Not these, they’re mine. All mine.

Cupcake Toppers

But these could be all yours.

When I bought these cutie pies from the Lollipop Workshop on etsy (also be cheery on flickr), I bought enough for two more sets. And I want two of you to have one. Well I want all of you to have them, but I only have two sets to give away. (Martian and Robot colors may vary from above.)

All you have to do to enter is give me some advice.

You see, Lollipop Workshop also sent me something else … A surprise … when she mailed the cupcake toppers.

I’m 10000000% certain it will be crazy cute!

From Lollipop Workshop

It’s in this box and I haven’t opened it yet.


Lollipop Workshop Goodies

Because she also sent this box for my little helper. So sneaky and sweet of her.

So the question is…
Should I wait until my niece visits again so we can open them together?
Should I rip open mine now and show you what’s inside?
Should I open both of them? I could re-wrap ‘em and no one would be the wiser.
But I do like surprises. Hmmmm… tortured by sweetness.

Okay, so you know I’m really gonna wait, right.

But, I’m just curious – what would you do?

  • Leave your answer in the comment section below and you’ll be entered for a chance to win a set of assorted cupcake toppers from Lollipop Workshop.
  • Make sure to leave a way for me to contact you if you win.
  • Deadline to enter is Tuesday, August 18th at 5 p.m. TIME’S UP!
  • Two winners* will be picked at random and announced sometime Tuesday evening on this post.

*Winners will be chosen using the integer generator.

Good Luck!

And, here’s some more cuteness from Lollipop Workshop. Custom cake toppers, lollidolls and candleholders. The store sells out quickly when she adds new products, so just send her a message if you need a custom order.

Okay, Time’s up and here are the two winners

#1619 – Elle
#831 – The Pettit Family

Congrats! You’re getting some super cute cupcake toppers!

Anonymous said...

I would wait for sure, but I would also do everything in my power to get her there ASAP!!!

August 18, 2009 02:37 PM
Erin said...

I would wait, but there would be great tempation to take a sneak peek, or shake it, or something. I also hope that her birthday wishes lolli doll is inside because those are adorable and I would want one so why shouldn't she give you one! Thanks for the giveaway.

August 18, 2009 02:37 PM
shrimpjive said...

Definitely wait.
Those toppers are so cute!

August 18, 2009 02:41 PM
Anonymous said...

Wait! Enjoy the exciting moment with your niece. There will be more giggles that way!

August 18, 2009 02:41 PM
Anne said...

Wait! It'll be so much fun to open with your little helper – what a great time :)

August 18, 2009 02:42 PM
Trent Sketch said...

I think it would be wonderful if you waited for your niece to open the packages with you. After all, she is your little helper and deserves the same rewards you do.

August 18, 2009 02:42 PM
Nicole said...

I'd open it carefully to see, then re-wrap it!

August 18, 2009 02:43 PM
Nicoleigh said...

I say way to open them. Your excitement won't be quite the same if you don't. Love the little candle holders. Too cute! And love that they would be easy to clean up and use again.

August 18, 2009 02:43 PM
Brenda said...

You must wait. So your surprise will be a real as hers!

August 18, 2009 02:47 PM
Valarie said...

Well, you are asking the wrong person. When my sister and I were in High School, we opened a Christmas present from my Aunt (she was only a few years older than us, and had fabulous taste)…we knew it would be clothing, and it was. We wore our new shirts to a party, and when we got home, we rewrapped them, and put them back under the tree. My mom found out last year (27 years later)…so I say open away, and rewrap. Have a lovely day. XXOO Valarie

August 18, 2009 02:47 PM
chefjen1 said...

Oh, I would totally wait for your niece, I know it's hard, but she loves to help you out so much and it looks like she enjoys it, so it would mean alot to her if you waited!

August 18, 2009 02:48 PM
StinaRie said...

Exactly how long is it that you'd have to wait for your little helper to come back??
The little devil on your shoulder is telling you to peek at yours . . . just sayin!

August 18, 2009 02:48 PM
Lisa said...

I would open them up VERY carefully and then tape them shut. :)

August 18, 2009 02:50 PM
Kelly said...

Rip into yours! But don't let her see what it is until she gets there and opens hers.
Those cupcakes look soooo good!

August 18, 2009 02:54 PM
Katie said...

Wait to open them with your niece. The suspense will be worth it and it will be so fun to open them at the same time!

August 18, 2009 02:55 PM
Liliana said...

I think you should open yours and show us what's inside. leave the one for your niece for her to open.

August 18, 2009 02:55 PM
youngsters said...

thats a tricky one! i would probably open it now, rewrap it and open it again with my neice! i'm so excited to try the banana cupcakes being that I just had one from Sprinkles…sooo yummy!! Thanks!! :)

August 18, 2009 02:56 PM
September Roberts said...

Either way your little helper will enjoy the surprise. I say wait for her and build the anticipation. Good luck on your choice!

August 18, 2009 02:56 PM
Anonymous said...

I would wait….maybe a day or two then curiosity would get the best of me and I'd peek but reseal the package.

August 18, 2009 02:58 PM
Kathie B. said...

oh how sweet they are. I would wait so you can open it with your neice. The wrapping is so pretty, she'll enjoy it too. I might have to put them out of sight though so I wouldn't be tempted. I am intrigued; please tell us what is in there.

August 18, 2009 02:58 PM
Genevieve said...

Yes, the sensible answer is to wait…. However, no one would know if you unwrapped them and wrapped them up again…. LOL

August 18, 2009 02:58 PM
kathy said...

ok..ok..ok..I am the first who can't wait to open fun presents. But…put them up on a shelf to get them out of sight and tell your neice there is a surprise for her when she comes. That way she will help you remember about it when she comes. Then rip into both of together, it will be like Christmas for both of you. I am excited to see what's in the box.

August 18, 2009 03:01 PM
Anonymous said...

Oh, this is a hard one. I would love to say wait till your niece arrives, but if it was me I would open them both and then rewrap them.

August 18, 2009 03:01 PM
Himesclan said...

It would be exciting to see what is inside, but wait until your neice comes. It will make it more exciting.

August 18, 2009 03:02 PM
Suz and Brandon said...

So Yummy!

If you can wait… I would wait! It would be so much more fun!

August 18, 2009 03:03 PM
kt said...

So the kid in me says open it verrrry carefully, take a peek and then put it all back together and acted surprised when you open them together (something I did almost every Christmas when I was a kid, ok MAYBE I have done it a few times as an adult….. I just can't stand to WAIT!!!!)

August 18, 2009 03:03 PM
Melanie said...

There is no way I could wait to open it. My curiousity would get the best of me. Plus I'd want to see all of the cuteness. You could go ahead and be using what's inside that little box. :-)

August 18, 2009 03:03 PM
pink23 said...

i covet these!

August 18, 2009 03:05 PM
Nancy Greyfeather said...

I totally agree. As much as I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be able to resist the cute, go ahead and wait for your niece to visit.

Go grab her up this weekend if you have to! XD


August 18, 2009 03:06 PM
Anonymous said...

Too cute! I'd try and wait. It will be worth it! Be sure to post what the surprise is in those nifty boxes.

August 18, 2009 03:06 PM
holman family said...

i guess it depends when your niece is coming next to visit you! ;) i would wait for her to open them w/ you, because my daughter LOVES sharing surprises with me. and i think it's awfully sweet how you share your baking experiences with her!

August 18, 2009 03:07 PM
Anonymous said...

i would want to rip into them too…but you should wait for your niece she will love it!!!!

you always find the cutest stuff!!! and i wish that i had a cake/candy store like yours near me…i think i would go broke though!!!

thanks for the awesome giveaway!!!

jen from pa

August 18, 2009 03:09 PM
Anonymous said...

You should probably wait…though what if there's something perishable in there…?

August 18, 2009 03:10 PM
Jen Joy said...

I think you should wait, but invite your niece over ASAP! :D

August 18, 2009 03:11 PM
Lisa said...

honestly, i would not be able to wait; but i'd let her open hers when she arrives.

August 18, 2009 03:13 PM
Anonymous said...


August 18, 2009 03:14 PM
Anonymous said...

you should wait to open it with your niece. trust me, the look on her face when she opens it will be reason enough to wait for her to be there.
karly <3

August 18, 2009 03:14 PM
Merideth said...

Definitely wait!

August 18, 2009 03:17 PM
emmazmom said...

It is awful but I can not stand not to know, I would open them and re-wrap

August 18, 2009 03:18 PM
Kristi said...

It will be hard, but it will be worth it if you wait and open with your neice. Thanks for the giveaway!

August 18, 2009 03:22 PM
Jennie said...

Well, I always opened my Christmas presents as a a child and then re-wrapped them so no one would know. I like to think that this helped develop some good acting skills. :) So, I think you should wait, but if the question is what would I do, then I would most certainly open them and then rewrap!


August 18, 2009 03:22 PM
Meg said...

As much as I hate suspense, I hate ruining surprises even more. Wait for you neice to visit again. Although, you could pull out all the stops to get her over this weekend, why wait too long?! :)

August 18, 2009 03:22 PM
Emily Cheng said...

Those are sooo cute. I would make a batch of the cupcakes and have them ready to eat when your niece comes over – then open the boxes together, while enjoying a yummy treat.

August 18, 2009 03:22 PM
Amanda/Jeff said...

If I wasn't sure it was going to be cute, I would open it to make sure she wasn't disappointed. Since you KNOW it'll be great, just wait and then enjoy together. :)

August 18, 2009 03:23 PM
Mandy said...

I'd wait and all open them together, you'll all be so excited!:)

August 18, 2009 03:24 PM
Mandy said...

I'd wait and all open them together, you'll all be so excited!:)

August 18, 2009 03:24 PM
Anonymous said...

wait and open together! two's a company (:

August 18, 2009 03:24 PM
Stacie said...

totally wait until your niece comes and that way you can share in the surprise together!

August 18, 2009 03:25 PM
Cupcake Carrie said...

wait, just wait. it will be worth it :)

August 18, 2009 03:28 PM
MommaBlogger said...

I would repeat over and over "patience is a virtue, patience is a virtue" until I really believed it, and then I'd probably sneak a peak anyway, carefully peeling the tape so that no one would notice ;)

August 18, 2009 03:30 PM
Anonymous said...

I agree. You should wait for your cute little baking assistant to be there and open them together. Plus you can enjoy the cute wrapping a bit longer and isn't the anticipation the best part?

August 18, 2009 03:31 PM
Annette M. said...

I think you should wait and open them together. Personally, the suspense would be killing me, but my niece would be thrilled that I waited for her to open them together.

annbr1217 (at) aol (dot) com

August 18, 2009 03:33 PM
Cherish said...

I know I would have a very hard time waiting but that would be the best thing to do. Maybe open yours just to see a peek…no, no, no – gather your willpower and wait!

August 18, 2009 03:35 PM
Anonymous said...

As hard as it would be, I think you should wait for your neice. There's nothing like sharing in the excitement together!

August 18, 2009 03:35 PM
Anonymous said...

I agree. You should wait for your cute little baking assistant to be there with you. She would love that. Then you can enjoy the fun wrapping for a bit longer. Plus, isn't the anticipation the best part?

August 18, 2009 03:36 PM
Shannon said...

A good surprise is rare these days, so hold on as long as you can to open them together to enjoy the look of surprise on each other's faces!

August 18, 2009 03:38 PM
Dawn said...

OH MY…such cute things!! :) Personally, I would rip into mine right away. I can NEVER WAIT! :) However, if I had the patience, I would wait and open them together. Good luck :)

August 18, 2009 03:39 PM
Didi said...

Those are killer adorable!

I'm gona have to say – SIT TIGHT!
You should wait for your niece and open the surprise gifts together! It'll be torture but soooo worth it!

August 18, 2009 03:42 PM
The Leonards said...

If it was my husband, he would open it up. He does not have the ability to wait for presents and because of this he never has presents under the Christmas tree. But, thankfully I have more self control. So, if it were me I would wait to open it with my neice.

August 18, 2009 03:42 PM
The Leonards said...

If it was my husband, he would open it up. He does not have the ability to wait for presents and because of this he never has presents under the Christmas tree. But, thankfully I have more self control. So, if it were me I would wait to open it with my neice.

August 18, 2009 03:42 PM
Dianne said...

I would definitely wait but I would have to put them out of sight, or I would be overcome with curiousity.

August 18, 2009 03:44 PM
Heidi said...

This depends on when your niece will next come to visit. If it is within a week, then you should wait because it will be more fun to open them together. BUT if it won't be for a few weeks or, heaven forbid, months, then I say open yours……just to see. You can always rewrap it if you want to.

August 18, 2009 03:44 PM
Heather said...

Waiting would be better. That way it can be a surprise for both of you. Take the time to share in a wonderful moment together it will be worth the wait. But be sure to share it with us after with great pictures.

August 18, 2009 03:45 PM
Sarah said...

I should say wait, but I know that I wouldn't be able to! I love presents and it would drive me mad having it there! Good Luck!

August 18, 2009 03:47 PM
Lesliebee said...

You need to get your neice there ASAP! Yes, I think you should wait. But if your surprises are anywhere near as cute as those candle holders, it's gonna be tough!

August 18, 2009 03:49 PM
Jessica said...

Oh, it would be easy to open them now, but to wait for your neice is a great idea. Take lots of pic. The Anticapation is killng me thou.

August 18, 2009 03:49 PM
Michelle PS said...

Oh I would so want to open them, but instead I would place them right on my kitchen table and be tortured by them daily :)
So few great surprises in life these days. Save it for the opportunity to be surprised along with your little helper.

August 18, 2009 03:50 PM
shirley said...

You have to wait for you neice! It would make her day if she knew you waited to share such a special surprise with her!!!!!

Contact me at:

August 18, 2009 03:53 PM
Yen said...

I would wait til your niece gets here to open it since that makes it even more exciting for you and her!

August 18, 2009 03:56 PM
michiemama said...

wait for your nieve! she will LOOOVOEEE it!

August 18, 2009 03:56 PM
Mary Helen said...

I would wait and open both of themwhen your niece comes. Make sure you send pictures as it's happening!!

August 18, 2009 03:57 PM
Kelly said...

Wait for your niece! Tell her to come visit ASAP! Opening the presents together will make it more fun, meaningful, and exciting!

August 18, 2009 03:59 PM
Rebecca said...

I recommend waiting for your niece! Nothing would be sweeter than watching her excited face, knowing you waited to share the moment with her!

August 18, 2009 04:00 PM
Anonymous said...

I think you should wait and open them together – the anticipation is half the fun!!

August 18, 2009 04:01 PM
Anonymous said...

You should definitely wait and open them together. What would I do? I'd have ripped that sucker open immediately!

August 18, 2009 04:02 PM
koprime said...

i would also wait but only because i know how much little ones like to open stuff, even when what's inside isn't all that exciting!

August 18, 2009 04:09 PM
Cami said...

I think it will definitely be worth the wait. It will make the surprise that much greater! :)

camiuf at gmail dot com

August 18, 2009 04:10 PM
Natalie said...

Wait, it will be worth it! Natalie

August 18, 2009 04:12 PM
Faith said...

Aww I think you should wait it out… maybe hide them in a cupboard until then, so you're not tempted!

August 18, 2009 04:12 PM
Lyndsay said...

Wait for her to open it with you but make it a game, like whoever gets it open fastest or who can rip the paper the least and then winner can decide what to do with the prizes. Like if it's more cute product and your helper wins she can decide when you use it or what you use it with…something like that. That way she will get two prizes and you will get to see her twice as happy.

August 18, 2009 04:12 PM
Lesa said...

I would rip them right open…but I spoil surprises..

August 18, 2009 04:13 PM
Katie said...

Open them together! It'll make the surprise much more worth it if you wait! And it'll make her feel good too!

August 18, 2009 04:13 PM
Wise Girl said...

Wait (as hard as it is to do!) until the "Little Helper" joins you again and open them together!

August 18, 2009 04:15 PM
The Ackers said...

Just open it!!!:)
rcaacggc at yahoo dot com

August 18, 2009 04:15 PM
Anonymous said...

Wait! It's so much fun having something to look forward to!

August 18, 2009 04:19 PM
itsemilysmom said...

I hate surprises but I think you should wait…the anticipation will kill you but I am sure it will be worth it.

August 18, 2009 04:20 PM
Angie Rash said...

Open it up and show us….I am dying to know what is inside.

August 18, 2009 04:21 PM
Isadora Herzog said...

I really think you should wait for your niece! :)

August 18, 2009 04:23 PM
RhinestoneRenegade said...

Rip into that gorgeous paper! But just your own :) You can call your niece (my nieces always get excited when I call with fun stuff!), let her know that packages arrived, describe your opening it step by step on the phone with her complete with the excitement factor, and send her a pic of your present next to her wrapped box, letting her know some excitement is in store for her as well :)

August 18, 2009 04:24 PM
Monica said...

Oh the dilema. I would want to rip them open and then rewrap them, but I think you should wait until your niece comes.

August 18, 2009 04:24 PM
Meg said...

I'd say that everything good is worth waiting for, and the torture of anticipated cuteness only makes it better! : )


August 18, 2009 04:25 PM
Rizzyred said...

As the mother of 3, I know better than to open anything wrapped without the little ones around… lest they find out! My vote is to wait it out for your niece. Patience is a virtue, right? Plus it builds character… 'cause waiting stinks. Good luck! I look forward to seeing what's inside that incredibly cute wrapping!

August 18, 2009 04:27 PM
Laura said...

Even though I should be nice and say wait, you should open at least one of them and wrap it back up! If you steam open the tape, none would be the wiser!

August 18, 2009 04:30 PM
Katie said...

Open yours, open yours! As much to satiate my curiosity as yours.

August 18, 2009 04:31 PM
Sherrill said...

Since most people say to wait, I'll go with the opposite. Just to be different. I'd have an awfully hard time not opening such a cute package! Ok, fine…you should wait. I couldn't, in good conscience, encourage you to open it.

August 18, 2009 04:31 PM
Erica said...

I think you should wait until she arrives, then make sure that you tell her they were both for you, so that if she gets something awesome that you want you can keep it and give her yours instead : )

August 18, 2009 04:34 PM
Anonymous said...

I would totally wait. Shared surprises are so much better!!


August 18, 2009 04:35 PM
Anonymous said...

I think you should wait and open them with your niece. Then you both will be surprised!!


August 18, 2009 04:36 PM
Ashley said...

Your niece would love it if it was a surprise for both of you!

August 18, 2009 04:38 PM
Julie said...

I love surprises, so I would say to wait until your niece gets there and you can open them together. I love surprises so much that I did not find out the sex of my babies until the day they were born. It is hard, but worth the wait. I think the anticipation of what could be inside is half the fun!!!!


August 18, 2009 04:40 PM
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