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Back to School

It is hard for me to believe, but some of the kids in the western part of my state went back to school on August 10th!  The summer is not nearly over then!  Around here the schools do not open until after Labor Day which is an excellent time to end the summer. Back when my daughters were in elementary school I decided that I wanted to do something special for them, and their friends as well, the day before the first day of school.  Now it couldn't be a big party- it was a big vacation weekend after all nor could it go very late- it was a school night, but somewhere around 15 years ago I started a little neighborhood tradition of "The School Bus Cake".

 I am not really sure how it evolved the way it did, but somehow it got to be a tradition in the neighborhood and with my girls' friends, and then later their parents, to come over to our house for a big slice of "School Bus Cake." It was always a cake which was somehow either shaped like a school bus or was decorated with a bus. It was a nice way to get together to discuss the summer that had just passed and to make plans about the school year ahead.

School Bus with Bruin Bear and Jaguar- School Mascots of Neighborhood kids' schools.
And to eat cake. 

One of the earliest attempts at creating a School Bus Cake

I wish that I could find the pictures of that first attempt at making a school bus out of cake.  I had not taken any cake decorating classes at that point and the first few cakes were not pretty, but were made with lots of love.  This is also when I began to take a serious look at the candy aisle to help with my first designs.  Did you know that cinnamon Tic Tacs make excellent brake lights and that Altoids are good for headlights when decorating a school bus?  Small chocolate donuts make for good tires, as do chocolate wafer cookies.  Mini vanilla wafers are good faces peering out of bus windows when decorated with icing and of course, when making a smaller bus full of Bruins, our school mascot, Teddy Grahams are a good option. I also learned not to use homemade Marshmallow Fondant to sculpt figures (See Bruin and Jaguar above). 

Eventually the cakes evolved into something that looked a little more like a school bus and more characters were introduced. 

I made my last school bus cake a couple of years ago. Most of those kids have all gone off to college (and beyond) now.   I can't say that I miss spending my Labor Day weekend inside baking and decorating cakes, but I sure do miss seeing those kids!

That last year we also had School Bus cookies as a take-home treat. 

And a little "Take Home Treat" for the Moms and Dads, chosen for and decorated in school colors, of course!

Where ever you are and whenever the children in your lives go back to school, I hope that they have a fun and successful school year! 

Thanks for stopping by!   



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