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!

Sarah said...

Yep, I have to agree with the majority. Wait for your little helper.

August 17, 2009 06:06 AM
Samantha H. said...

I think it would be rather nice if you kept them wrapped until your niece visited. : D
But in the meantime why not press your ear to the box and give it a gentle shake?

August 17, 2009 06:07 AM
Natali said...

Hmmm, lack of willpower would definitely lead me to rip into those packages. However, you must be a better person than I am to wait….

August 17, 2009 06:10 AM
wild child said...

oh my gosh – CUTE OVERLOAD!!!

open them together with your niece for sure… hard, I know!

Meg :)

August 17, 2009 06:13 AM
Sarah said...

As hard as it would be, I'd wait till your niece comes! It will be so nice for you two to open them together! Can't wait to see what the surprise is :)

August 17, 2009 06:16 AM
Jennifer D. said...

I would wait, it's always better to wait to open presents, you get to maintain the suspense longer… and that's sometimes better than the gift itself. You should also send me one of those delicious-looking suckers, just because I am asking so very nicely.. please? :)

August 17, 2009 06:17 AM
Bec said...

It would kill me but I would wait. I might do a little jiggling. I might try to take a little peek but I would wait. They are gorgeous cupcake toppers though. One can never find things that cute over here. :)

August 17, 2009 06:19 AM
RachelB said...

I would wait until your niece comes over… but I would have to hide them somewhere! :) You'll be happy that you waited and it will be a very special moment for you both!


PS: Pictures please!!! :-)

August 17, 2009 06:21 AM
The Barkers said...

I would get her little bootie over to your house pronto!

August 17, 2009 06:23 AM
Amy said...

I think you should wait for your neice to come, it really will be worth the wait… Can't wait to see what's inside. ;)

August 17, 2009 06:24 AM
karla said...

wait for the niece…doing it together will feel better.

Karla_schade@ hotmail . com

August 17, 2009 06:24 AM
Quynh said...

oh gosh i don't know if i'd be able to wait BUT i think you should wait until your niece comes so you both can open your surprises together :0)

August 17, 2009 06:24 AM
Heather said...

I would wait until your niece comes, but that's just me:)

August 17, 2009 06:25 AM
nuriwan said...

I think you should wait until the Little Helper arrived!!!

Hide the parcels so as not to be constantly reminded of them, so the waiting will be easier! ;)

(I'm nuriwan on twitter)

August 17, 2009 06:27 AM
Emily said...

I think you should get your niece, turn your backs to each other and open the other's present, then turn around and show the other what they got. :)

August 17, 2009 06:28 AM
Ms. Lady said...

Oh, so cute!!! If it was me… My fingers would be so itchy… But I would put it on top of the fridge and wait for my niece… I think she would be so excited that I waited that it would be eeeee so much fun :)

August 17, 2009 06:33 AM
morgana said...

Mmmmmmmm. Creamy cheese cream and lovely toppers.

I think I'd wait to open de packs too but all the way I'd keep thinking it could be quite usefull to have some kind of Superman vision to be able to see beyond the paper and boxes.

August 17, 2009 06:34 AM
Sarah said...

Wait for your niece…everybody likes to be reminded that they're special and worth waiting for! <3

I can't wait to see what's in the box, though! :)

August 17, 2009 06:34 AM
Kathy said...

I say wait till your helper comes over, but get her to come over asap. :) Those toppers are so adorable.

August 17, 2009 06:35 AM
Jill said...

I would totally open it. Totally. I LOVE suprises but I just couldn't NOT open it. ;)

August 17, 2009 06:36 AM
Melissa said...

You can do it…I know you can. It's going to be hard but just put them in the closet and don't look at them until your niece visits again. Just imagine her face when she opens the box for-the-first-time.

August 17, 2009 06:36 AM
Lotte said...

again so many comments *gg
ok, I would unwrap mine and don´t touch the other one… it´s so cute…
Ißm excited, what´s inside…

August 17, 2009 06:37 AM
Nicole A. said...

Oh man, it´s so hard to wait for something like that…but surprises are totally worth it when shared with someone so you have to wait! at least the wrapping is absolutely gorgeous so you can just stare at it and daydream about the wonderfulness inside in the meantime…

August 17, 2009 06:37 AM
Katiecakes said...

I'd open them and re wrap them for the niece coming along. I'm naughty like that!!
Katie xox

August 17, 2009 06:37 AM
mameelynn said...

I would open them along the tape line and see what they are and then re-wrap them…. I used to do this with my Christmas presents… I'm not one for surprises… I don't like the waiting!

August 17, 2009 06:37 AM
ReBecca said...

DEFINITELY wait til the niece is about. It'll be hard, but worth it. =)

August 17, 2009 06:41 AM
Mari said...

I am so inpatient and want to know what's in the box NOW! I would totally open it carefully and then see what is in there and neatly tape it all back up again! YES…I am sneaky like that…lol..

August 17, 2009 06:42 AM
Mikaela said...

Just rip it up! I want to know what´s inside.

August 17, 2009 06:42 AM
kameko87 said...

If it were me… I'd probably wait too, haha. Waiting is half the fun of presents!

August 17, 2009 06:43 AM
Life as Five said...

Mail your niece hers, and once she gets it in the mail open it together via Skype or a similar computer program. That way you can both enjoy the gift now, but still see the others excitement.

August 17, 2009 06:45 AM
Jackie said...

I would want to rip it open…BUT wait for her! She will love it and you will be both be soooo excited to find out what it is that has been wrapped up so cute all this time! I'm excited to see what is inside!
Jackie (

August 17, 2009 06:46 AM
Crystal said...

I think you should open it now and show us what is in there. I really wanna know. I hate waiting to open gifts, and I drive myself crazy. :)

August 17, 2009 06:47 AM
Melissa said...

I say wait – it would be much more exciting to open it together!

Or… you can tear an itty bitty hole in the corner of your wrapper and kind of guess whats inside based on the color of the box. (An old trick from my childhood Christmases).

melissahiatt at gmail dot com

August 17, 2009 06:48 AM
Cindy said...

It'll be twice as fun as you both tear the packages open together. I say you wait for your cute little niece to visit.

August 17, 2009 06:48 AM
Jess said...

Hmmmm…well, we'll still see them when you open them with your niece, and plus, it's a lot of fun when you're on a trip to have something special waiting for you when you get there. She'll feel so loved. :)

August 17, 2009 06:49 AM

It is too hard for me to wait for anything…I would open mine up! I am dying to know what is inside too!

August 17, 2009 06:49 AM
gingerina said...

As difficult as it will be to wait for your favorite little helper (those are some CUTE packages), you will both have more fun if you are surprised together.

August 17, 2009 06:50 AM
Anonymous said...

you have to wait! think of the excitement you will exude towards her when she arrives! these are sooo adorable! ah the creativity.

August 17, 2009 06:52 AM
Jenny said...

first of all, how thoughtful of them to send something for your niece as well! as much as i would want to rip mine open, i think you should wait to open it with your niece. it'll be one more special memory you get to share with her. :)

August 17, 2009 06:54 AM
Cathy said...

You should totally wait. Wait. Wait. Wait.

August 17, 2009 06:54 AM
Chaney said...

I would have to wait, even though I hate surprises it would be a whole lot more fun to wait!

August 17, 2009 06:55 AM
irene said...

wait for the neice and open them together =)

August 17, 2009 06:57 AM
Anonymous said...

I'd wait and open them together, so much more fun :) Can't wait to see what it is!

August 17, 2009 06:57 AM
Erin said...

Wait for your little helper. Delayed gratification and all that. Plus, it will be more fun to open them together and both be surprised. Not that I have that kind of willpower. That sucker would have been opened the second I saw it. ;)

August 17, 2009 06:58 AM
Melody said...

Ok, well, as much as you should wait, I know I would not be able to handle waiting. So, if I was you, I would open yours and not say anything to your neice. She will still be surprised with her gift.

August 17, 2009 07:00 AM
Sarandipity said...

As impatient as I am, I would push my restraint to the limits and wait for my helper so we could open them together. At least I think I would!

August 17, 2009 07:00 AM
SugarBeaters said...

I sure do want to see what is inside, but I will not be selfish :) Go ahead and wait for your neice, its the way to go!

August 17, 2009 07:02 AM
Rebecca D. said...

open open open!!!!! I'm all about instant gratification over here!!Sad huh!!! OPEN !!!!


August 17, 2009 07:07 AM
Annabel said...

Gosh, open it! I'm sure she will forgive you.

August 17, 2009 07:08 AM
Norka said...

If it were me i would wait til she came over again and tell her i wanted us to be surprised together. Surprises are fun when you can share them :)

August 17, 2009 07:08 AM
dana hobbs said...

I would wait, but the second you see her, have her open them!!

August 17, 2009 07:08 AM
Maddie said...

I would open them both and rewrap them, but then i've been known to do that with my Christmas presents too! I'm sure whatever it is, its way cute!

August 17, 2009 07:10 AM
Digital Misfit said...

Oh The TORTURE! That said, I think you MUST wait and be surprised alongside your niece. The anticipation of cuteness is almost as exciting as the cuteness itself.

August 17, 2009 07:10 AM
Jane Jeffress Thomas said...

I would want to rip into them, but I would try my level best to wait. Waiting is very hard to do, but it makes the opening that much better when you do.


August 17, 2009 07:12 AM
Anonymous said...

I would open mine and then figure out what to do with the other one from there. Giving your niece the present by itself after opening yours offers two advantages. One being that you already know whether she will like it or not, and a gift given will mean more to a child then if there is only one.

my e-mail is

August 17, 2009 07:14 AM
miss mellie said...

open and show us whats inside!!!!!! i hate surprises too!!!!

August 17, 2009 07:17 AM
ilovemesomecupcakes said...

you should open one now, thats what i'd do. i wouldnt be able to wait.

August 17, 2009 07:19 AM
Karen Smith said...

Hmmmm, that is such a hard choice! But I think you should wait. It will be double the fun to open it with your niece.

August 17, 2009 07:20 AM
jennys said...

too cute! i'd be tempted to open both packages up right away too. but i'd wait for your li'l helper since it'll be great to be surprised together. hope it's not too long for her visit!

jenny1028 [at]

August 17, 2009 07:21 AM
Anonymous said...

wait and open them together.

August 17, 2009 07:21 AM
Lori Barnett said...

Those packages look so adorable…and waiting until your neice comes just gives you that much longer to enjoy the beautiful gift wrap. As a matter of fact…why don't you wait a couple days after your niece gets there to open them :) That will give her a chance to enjoy the packages too! hee hee hee.

August 17, 2009 07:21 AM
Pinky said...

Definitely wait for your niece…it will be that much more fun with her there.

August 17, 2009 07:22 AM
Herah ^_^ said...


I really want to see whats in them xD

August 17, 2009 07:24 AM
Anonymous said...

You should wait but I would probably not be able to LOL! Those are too cute!

Jan J.

August 17, 2009 07:26 AM
Vonnie said...

Wow! I must try these cupcakes, my kids love anything with bananas in so these will be a hit. Thanks for the recipe :)

As for the package? I have NO PATIENCE and as much as I'd love to wait, I'd have had the box opened by now!

vonnie at blottedcopybook dot co dot uk

August 17, 2009 07:27 AM
Tamera said...

As tempting as it is to just rip it open so we all can see what's in it, you should definitely wait for your niece and open them together!!

August 17, 2009 07:29 AM
jessymessy said...

you guys should open them together! and whatever they are, i'm sure they're cooking-related so you guys can think of something creative to do with them together. =)

August 17, 2009 07:31 AM
KrisG said...

You've gotta wait!! :)
although I am dying to find out what it is as well!! Love your blog!

August 17, 2009 07:32 AM
Rose said...

Those are so sweet! I would wait until my helper came again. Why spoil the fun? My email is cwps29(at)yahoo(dot)ca

August 17, 2009 07:33 AM
WishTrish said...

Of course I want you to share RIGHT NOW, but I want you to wait for your niece even more. I'm that kind of aunt… Those are super sweet!

August 17, 2009 07:33 AM
Kim said...

Whenever I make cream cheese frosting, even at room temp! I'm probably just too impatient!

The cupcake toppers are cute and totally remind me of these new toothbrush holders I saw at The Container Store.

As far as the surprises go… I would definitely save them to open together! Sharing that experience and element of surprise will be so adventurous for you both!

August 17, 2009 07:33 AM
monnbonns said...

I would definitely wait for my niece. I bake with her now and it's one of those rare moments when we can just have fun and talk about nonsense and when you're a kid, those are the memories you remember once you're grown up.

August 17, 2009 07:34 AM
the southern hostess said...

Personally, I would rip into them both, but hopefully you'll show more restraint.

August 17, 2009 07:34 AM
Shadow's Mom said...

I'd say open yours! I hate surprises plus we'll all get to see what you got! ;o)

August 17, 2009 07:35 AM
Marlene said...

I would totally open and re-wrap!

August 17, 2009 07:36 AM
Denise and Michael said...

Politically correct and nice = wait for her (she is cute too, by the way). Reality = RIP THEM OPEN NOW!!!! And enjoy!


August 17, 2009 07:38 AM
Elizabeth Wood said...

Waiting is everything, Her face will say it all. Can't wait to see it myself!!

August 17, 2009 07:39 AM
michelle said...

I would wait and open them with her! Its so much more fun when youre both surprised!

August 17, 2009 07:41 AM
kmawesome said...

personally i would have either invited my neice over right away or gone over to pick her up, cause i wouldn;t want to wait to open it, but since there are 2 i think it only appropriate to wait for your helper……but ends do tape nicely back together.

August 17, 2009 07:41 AM
Morgan said...

I'd probably carefully unwrap it a little, check to make sure it's not food like someone else mentioned, then wait and act super surprised when the little helper comes by!

August 17, 2009 07:43 AM
Kate said...

Patience is a virtue i dont have time for :)
My family know to NEVER put my christmas or birthday presents out untill the actual day because it KILLS me to have to wait – but i most definately think you should wait to share this special surprise with your special helper – That will make it all the more sweeeeter :D

August 17, 2009 07:43 AM
Angie said...

I have got to check out the Lollipop Workship! I think you should wait for your niece to visit before opening them. It will give you a reason to have her over SOON, and the packaing is so adorable you can put it somewhere and admire it until she comes!

August 17, 2009 07:44 AM
brie said...

I'm voting for "wait for your neice." It will more fun to open them and be surprised together. Plus, waiting will just allow the anticipation and intrigue to build!

August 17, 2009 07:44 AM
life-muses said...

i would say open yours first and let your niece open hers herself. dont think i can wait it it's mine! :)

August 17, 2009 07:45 AM
tiffany Nash said...

I LOVE surprises, especially good ones so I would wait – but, to prolong the torture I would send her an email with a pic and also call her so that she knows and can anticipate too!

August 17, 2009 07:47 AM
Cassie said...

I would want to wait, but I would have to rip mine open to see what it was. I'm terrible about waiting!

August 17, 2009 07:48 AM
foxy said...

You should wait for your "little helper"! Although I would find soooo hard to resist that cute package!!
Ask your helper to hurry up and visit!!!!! Lol!

August 17, 2009 07:52 AM
Amy said...

Wait!!! You'll both appreciate the surprise…however, even though I love surprises, it'd kill me to wait…so I am known to carefully unwrap and then peek and wrap it back the way it was…but I always would regret it…so ya…wait!
luv luv

August 17, 2009 07:53 AM
Emilie said...

the anticipation si killing me BUT even with that said, wait til she comes and open them together:) more excitign that way.. you can both be surprised together! imagine how much more excited you will be when you can not knwo whats in them together!!!

August 17, 2009 07:53 AM
Rita said...

You're such a nice auntie! But you gotta wait for your niece!!

August 17, 2009 07:54 AM
Carolyn said...

As a doting niece you need to find a reason for her to pay a visit NOW.

August 17, 2009 07:55 AM
Sue said...

have to ask?????


I am dying of curiosity !!!

OK…then of course we are all adults here…how long until your niece comes? How about sending her the parecl…then getting on the phone together and opening them together…maybe they are different…maybe her's might then be cuter then yours…hmmm…

Open both of them…pick the cutest…then rewrap your least fav and give it to her.

Oh no…that would not be auntie-like …

OK..sit on your hands….and wait until she arrives…and then let her pick one and then oepn the other….you are a saint.

Really, I don't care what you do as long as I win those candle holders..LOLOLOL :-))

August 17, 2009 07:59 AM
Anonymous said...

Wait to open them together. Anticipation is half the fun, and she'll love that you waited for her.

August 17, 2009 08:05 AM
the fat hen said...

Tough one, but you know your little helper will be ecstatic when she sees that brilliant package waiting for her. Also because you have one too, you get to share that moment. Priceless.

August 17, 2009 08:09 AM
Anonymous said...

I would go get the niece and open the package…I wouldn't wait for her to visit I would..either visit her or go pick her up…LOL

August 17, 2009 08:11 AM
vettie said...

Aww that wrapping is ADORABLE too!

Definitely wait and open the gifts together. And be sure to let us know what it is!!!!

August 17, 2009 08:14 AM
Angie said...

Those animals are adorable!

If I were you, I'd wait to open them together. :]

angelilee91@gmail dot com

August 17, 2009 08:14 AM
Anonymous said...

I would want to open them, but I'd have to wait. I'd want to share the excitement. You should wait. I know you will. The bee topper is the cutest thing ever.


August 17, 2009 08:16 AM
mylittlecupcake said...

Of course you should wait for her to come!!!! Even if you open and wrap it again the surprised feeling just won't be the same! If I were you I would call her up right now and ask her to come over!!! Have some cookies and milk ready!!! :)

August 17, 2009 08:18 AM
Anonymous said...

went to the grocery store today. bought a bag of ripe bananas. going to try your banana cupcakes. they look yummy.

August 17, 2009 08:19 AM
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