Gingerbread Cupcakes

Here we are at the most wonderful time of the year! Yes, I love all the Christmas things: trees, lights, stockings, nutcrackers, cookies, candy, hot cocoa, family time, fun get togethers, wrapping and giving presents. All the good stuff. It can also get overwhelming and stressful (remind me to tell you about my meltdown over not being able to find my mini gingerbread cookie cutter sometime). I try to not fall into the chaos but there are moments when it doesn’t feel like everything on my list will get finished. Anyone else?

Holiday baking is usually at the top of that long list! It’s in full swing at my house. One of the amazing things about holiday baking for me is that the flavors and smells can transport me to a wonderful memory of a person or place, and make me feel happy, cozy and loved. These Gingerbread Cupcakes are no stranger to incredible flavor and they fill the air with the most delightful smell while they’re baking.

When I was selling baked goods, Gingerbread Cupcakes were one of my most requested holiday orders. Why wouldn’t they be? The cake is a perfectly spiced, molasses and brown sugar concoction of goodness. Then there’s the rich, tangy cinnamon cream cheese frosting. To top it all off is a sweet little gingerbread cookie! So charming and incredibly delicious! You don’t have to choose between a cookie and a cupcake. Have BOTH! You’re welcome!

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I know I always say this but it’s mostly why I love to bake. These cupcakes make great gifts! Teachers, neighbors, hair stylists, and friends will be thrilled with such a fun treat. The day I made these, I ran some out to our mail carrier and she was pleasantly surprised and excited to dig in! I also took some to a friend who’s recovering from surgery. It just so happened, she was feeling a little down that day. I opened the box and six of these adorable fellas were smiling at her and she smiled right back! Bake people happy! Yes!

Let’s get going on making these! The cupcakes include lots of gingerbread spices, eggs, molasses, brown sugar, butter, flour and baking soda (not pictured–water).

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You don’t even need a mixer to whip these up! It can all be done by hand. Melt the butter. Have I ever mentioned we don’t own a microwave? I melt my butter double-boiler style.

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Combine the molasses, brown sugar, eggs and melted butter in a mixing bowl.

Daisy Mae heard me whisking and ran into my “photo studio” to see if I needed help! Sweet beagle!

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Combine the flour, spices, baking soda and salt and add to the wet ingredients. Lots of spices in these! I don’t like a bland gingerbread anything. I want to taste all the spices!

The finished batter will be gooey and smell amazing! Breathe it all in!

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Line the cupcake pan and fill. I like to use an ice cream scoop to fill to make them all even. It’s easier too! Once the pan is full, bake them and let them cool completely.

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Time to make the frosting. I didn’t get a picture of the ingredients before I started mixing. I was a little eager to get these finished so I could eat one! It’s just a basic cream cheese frosting with the addition of cinnamon. My version is included in the recipe below.

Tip: Before I add the cinnamon, I scoop a little out into a small baggie to use for the gingerbread cookies. It’s easy to pipe and I don’t have to make another kind of frosting. 

Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes and top each one with a little gingerbread cookie.

As soon as I put these together, I smile! They truly bring me joy and what could be better than that during this season of hustle and bustle? These guys aren’t in any hurry and I could take a lesson from them!

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Delicious doesn’t even begin to describe how wonderful these cupcakes are. Make them, eat them (while guzzling a cup of coffee) and share them. I promise you’ll be energized to finish all the items on your to-do list! You might even accomplish all the tasks with a smile on your face!

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From the heart,
Shannon

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Gingerbread Cupcakes

Ingredients
Cupcakes (this recipe makes about 20 standard size cupcakes)
3 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
4 tsp ground cinnamon
4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup (16 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 cup molasses
2 large eggs (room temp)
1 cup water

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a cupcake pan/muffin tin with paper liners.
  2. Combine the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the melted butter, brown sugar, molasses, and egg.
  4. Add 1/2 cup of the water to the melted butter mixture, then half the dry mixture, and stir. Add the remaining water and dry mixture, stirring until thoroughly combined.
  5. Scoop the batter into the prepared pan.
  6. Bake the cupcakes for 20 to 22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of one comes out clean. Remove the cupcakes from the oven, and transfer them to a rack to cool completely.
  7. Frost with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting (below) and top with a gingerbread cookie.
  8. Smile and enjoy the holidays!

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
8 TBSP unsalted butter (room temp)
12 oz. cream cheese (room temp)
8 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon (or to taste)

  1. Combine all ingredients with a mixer until light and fluffy.
  2. Spoon into a pastry bag and pipe onto cupcakes or use a knife to spread the frosting onto each cupcake.

 

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Rolling into Thanksgiving!

Is it really November 26? I’m feeling very behind on all holiday things. Anyone else? This past weekend, Carrie and I drove to NC to see a concert put on by Carrie’s broadway idol, Jessica Vosk. It happened to be near Hannah’s place so, as a big bonus, we got to see Han too! It was a great trip! Brunch, wedding venue tour, concert, met Jessica Vosk, hot yoga and avocado toast. Super quick and fun trip! It was a little easier to leave this time because Hannah’s coming home for Thanksgiving! 

Usually, when November 1st hits, I’m knee deep in Pumpkin Roll making. Not this year. I don’t know why but I hadn’t made any until today. Time has definitely snuck away from me and here it is the week of Thanksgiving and I’m cramming in some Pumpkin Rolls.

I told Hannah and Carrie this is their year to learn to make them while Hannah’s home. They’ve always enjoyed the scrumptious treat but never really spent time making these with me. I want them to know how so they can keep this annual tradition alive for years to come.

I learned how to make Pumpkin Roll from my mom and grandma and have always associated it with Thanksgiving because it’s usually part of the dessert line-up. I love it! Pumpkin Roll is delicious and classic and it’s a dessert that can be made weeks or months in advance and stored in the freezer. It’s actually much easier to slice while it’s frozen! It also makes a wonderful gift.

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You don’t need many ingredients but you do need space and dedicated time and patience. Don’t be intimidated by the rolling. I’m going to share some of my tricks with you and you’ll see how easy it is.

Fresh, seasonal ingredients make for a perfect cake. Eggs (these are from Harvest Bell), sugar, vanilla, pumpkin purée, all-purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice.

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Prep your pans! I use jelly roll style pans. I line them with unbleached parchment and give them a quick spray with oil to be sure they don’t stick. It’s not pretty but it gets the job done.IMG_6717

Start by beating the eggs, sugar and vanilla until nice and thick. Can we talk about the color of those eggs for a second? Beautiful!

Add the pumpkin purée (mine is homemade from pie pumpkins I got from Martha’s Farm) then add the dry ingredients.

Pour the batter into prepared pans. I’m making a double batch. One plain and one with pecans. Please add pecans! Just chop them and sprinkle them on top before baking. My sweet Daisy Mae is there to make sure I get it right! 🙂

Pop them in the oven and clean up your mess. You could also have a cup of coffee or glass of wine. Yeah, do that! These only bake until the top springs back when touched. If you bake it too long, there’s a chance it will crack when you roll it.

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Here’s where I have some advice on the rolling. For years, I flipped these things out onto a towel covered with powdered sugar. There was always a dust cloud of sugar and it went EVERYWHERE! Also, the whole process made me nervous–would the cake come out of the pan, would it crack, would I miss the towel??!! Enough of that! I adopted a new technique a few years ago and it much less messy and more calming for the baker!

I get a larger cookie sheet ready by turning it over and covering it with a tea towel. I use my handy dandy powdered sugar sprinkler jar to sprinkle sugar right on top of the pumpkin roll when it comes out of the oven. Then I put the towel and cookie sheet on top and gently invert it. Remove the pumpkin roll pan and parchment and roll up the hot cake. Let it cool completely in the towel on a cooling rack. Cotton tea towels work best.

When the Pumpkin Roll is cool, make the filling which is simply cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar and vanilla whipped up with a mixer until creamy and fluffy.

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Gently unroll the cake and spread the filling to cover the cake. If your cake cracks, do not panic. These things are very forgiving. Keep spreading the filling and move to the next step.

Roll her back up nice and tight. It’s best to do that right onto a piece of plastic wrap then sprinkle a little more powdered sugar over the roll and wrap the whole thing tightly in the plastic then in foil. Stick it in the fridge or freezer for several hours to set up.

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When you’re ready to serve, simply slice to your desired thickness. I like to slice mine in about 1″ slices. It’s so pretty and always tastes amazing!

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For me, Pumpkin Roll is about the memories I have of Thanksgiving. I miss those big family gatherings. Due to all sorts of family changes, it’s hard to keep everything the same. That’s one of the many things I love about food. It can give all the feels, bring back nice memories and create new experiences.

Maybe next year Hannah and Carrie will make this for me! Until then, I’m ready to get going on preparing one of my favorite meals of the year. I have much to be thankful for! Safe travels if you’re traveling and enjoy time with all those you’re with. Happy Thanksgiving!

From the heart,
Shannon

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Pumpkin Roll
Ingredients
Cake
3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 TBSP pumpkin pie spice
1/4 tsp salt
3 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup pure pumpkin puree
Choppped pecans, if desired (highly encouraged!)

Filling
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
6 TBSP butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup powdered sugar (optional)

Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan with parchment paper and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
2. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice and salt. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat eggs, vanilla and sugar until thick. Add in pumpkin and mix to combine. Stir in flour mixture. Spread batter evenly into prepared pan. If adding pecans, sprinkle those on top.
3. Bake for 13 to 15 minutes or until top of cake springs back when touched. Immediately loosen then sprinkle the top with powdered sugar and invert cake onto a larger cookie sheet covered with a tea towel. Carefully peel off paper. Roll up cake and towel together, starting with narrow end. Cool completely on wire rack.
4. In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter and vanilla until smooth. Carefully unroll cake. Spread cream cheese mixture over cake. Roll cake as tightly as possible. Wrap in plastic wrap then foil and refrigerate at least one hour.

Store prepared Pumpkin Roll in the fridge for up to 5 days. You can also store in the freezer for up to one month. Remove frozen Pumpkin Roll and slice in 1″ slices and serve at room temperature.

If you want to double the recipe, it’s about 3 cups of batter per pan.

Pumpkin Cranberry Scones

I wish I had a fun memory or story to share about these scones. The truth is, I never made scones before this. I modified this Pumpkin Cranberry Scone recipe from a magazine my mother-in-law sent me a couple weeks ago. I flipped through the magazine and saw these and thought, I don’t know why I’ve never made scones. They’re one of my favorite things to eat and when I have one, it feels like an indulgence.

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We had our first snow for the season here in NE Ohio this week. I want to be upset about that (not a fan of winter!) but I’ve decided to embrace all the wonderful things about a snowy day (you can remind me of these in February). Unlimited cups of warm, freshly brewed coffee and tea, a cute hat and scarf, my coziest socks and big, thick sweatshirts. One of the challenges with this November snow is it makes me think of Christmas instead of Thanksgiving. I’m a full blown Thanksgiving person. I give it all the attention and don’t bust out a single Christmas decoration until the day after Thanksgiving. These Pumpkin Cranberry Scones taste like November and look a little like Christmas. It’s pretty cool these little darlings can accomplish that amazing feat!

Simple ingredients are all you need. My trusty Mud Run Farm pastry flour made the scones light and tender.

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You’ll also need: salt, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, brown sugar, cranberries, pumpkin, eggs, butter and half and half.

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Start with the dry ingredients then add the wet and combine. These couldn’t be easier to put together and if you have all the ingredients measured, making what feels like a fancy breakfast is a breeze.

Gently knead the dough then roll or pat into a circle and cut into wedges.

Place the wedges on a parchment lined baking sheet. Brush the tops with an egg wash and into the oven they go! That’s it! See all the chunks of butter? That’s your fluffy, flaky, fabulous factor!

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While they’re doing their thing in the oven, whip up a quick citrus glaze just to take them over the top. Powdered sugar, orange zest and juice, butter and a little cream.

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When the scones are finished baking, let them cool for a few minutes then get that glaze on them! The combination of flavors is so good and these truly are a fusion of all things November and December! I don’t have to feel guilty about eating something that kind of reminds me of Christmas because it totally still screams Thanksgiving! Brilliant! Also, I’d never feel guilty about eating a freshly baked scone. These are not super sweet and are the perfect texture for dunking.

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I added some raw pepitas and more dried cranberries to the top to make them extra festive. I think they’re beautiful and all the colors make them fun and not too fancy!

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Don’t wait for a special occasion to indulge! You can have these ready for breakfast or brunch in no time. Put on your cute scarf, puffy sweatshirt and cozy socks and meet your friend, spouse or significant other for afternoon coffee. Bring these glorious treats along to enjoy together. Eating scones together is the best kind of day!

From the heart,
Shannon

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Pumpkin Cranberry Scones
Ingredients
2 ½ cups pastry flour or unbleached all-purpose flour
¼ cup packed brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 ½ tsp pumpkin pie spice
¼ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
½ cup butter, cut up
½ cup dried cranberries
2 eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup half-and-half, light cream, or milk
½ cup canned pumpkin
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 TBSP water

Glaze
2 cups powdered sugar
1 TBSP butter, melted
2 tsp orange zest
2 TBSP orange juice
Add cream or milk as needed to thin

Instructions
Preheat oven to 400 degrees °F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.

In a large bowl stir together flour, brown sugar, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, and salt. Using a pastry blender, cut in the 1/2 cup butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add cranberries and toss well. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture; set aside.

In a small bowl stir together the 2 eggs, half-and-half, and pumpkin. Add pumpkin mixture all at once to flour mixture. Stir just until combined.

Turn dough out onto a well-floured surface. Knead dough by folding and gently pressing it for 10 to 12 strokes or until dough is nearly smooth. Pat or lightly roll dough into an 8-inch circle. Cut circle into eight wedges.

Place wedges 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet. In a small bowl combine the 1 egg with the 1 tablespoon water. Brush wedges lightly with egg mixture. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden. Remove scones from baking sheet. Let cool for 5 minutes before spreading with glaze.

For glaze, in a small bowl stir together powdered sugar, the 1 tablespoon butter, the 2 teaspoons orange zest and juice until well combined.

Spoon glaze over warm scones, spreading evenly. Sprinkle with dried cranberries and/or raw pepitas if desired.

Recipe modified from: Better Homes & Gardens

Pumpkin Spice Rolls

Hi! I feel fall in the air. Even though the temps here in NE Ohio are quite warm, the air feels different. I’ve been studying all sorts of fall recipes and feeling downright giddy about one of my favorite baking seasons. Please give me all the pumpkin baked goods in the world! My Pinterest boards and baking notebook are overflowing with all the things I want to make! What better way to spend September than by sharing all things pumpkin?

Pumpkin Spice Rolls topped my fall baking list. I really hope you make these! They’re worth every single second you’ll spend planning, baking and eating them. I made this version a few years ago to sell at one of the farmers’ markets. My original cinnamon rolls always sold out. It was fall, I was feeling pumpkin-y and these marvelous rolls were discovered. My regular customers enjoyed them and I liked that they looked like fall. The pumpkin taste is subtle and gives the dough the most beautiful color and texture. Swapping out the cinnamon filling for a pumpkin pie spice filling is a scrumptious change.  If you’re like me and start making pumpkin recipes before stores sell pumpkin pie spice, here’s my recipe to make your own.

When you make these rolls and take that first bite, your life will be changed and you’ll probably never want a regular cinnamon roll again! Never say never. However, these are super special.

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This is a yeast dough recipe. Don’t be scared, it’s so simple to put together. Start with good (mostly local) ingredients. Get the sugar, milk and yeast mingling then add the rest of the ingredients and let the dough hook on your mixer do the work.  You can also knead by hand.

The big difference in this recipe is the addition of pumpkin and spices.  They really transform the texture and flavor of the dough. Once the dough comes together, place it in a bowl and put in a warm place to rise.  Step one is complete!

While the dough is rising, mix up the filling. Brown sugar and lots of pumpkin pie spice. Line a pan with parchment and butter it. The parchment is a must!

Gently roll out the dough. Once it’s rolled, smear butter all over it. Some people melt their butter to do this step but I like the butter to just be soft enough to slather it. Think back to your kindergarten finger painting days! Want in on a little secret? I write words or notes in the butter. Yep. I’ve always done that. Depending on my mood, they can be pretty interesting! Have fun and put some love into these babies!

Next comes the spices. Don’t skimp and generously sprinkle them over the butter layer! Roll the dough towards you and slice. I’ve seen all kinds of methods for slicing. The one that works best for me is my good bread knife. Try to keep the rolls tight.

Place the slices in the prepared pan and let them rise again. When they’ve doubled in size, bake them and enjoy how amazing your house smells! If you bake these in the morning hours, you will not have to beg anyone to get out of bed! The first picture below is before the rise and the third picture is after. If you don’t want to bake them right away, don’t go through with the second rise yet. You can stick them in the fridge and get them out about an hour before you want to bake them to let them rise.

While the rolls bake, make the icing. It’s a simple vanilla cream cheese base. I also like to add bourbon. I didn’t on this batch but if you want to kick them up a notch, experiment with adding bourbon or maple syrup or more pumpkin pie spice. Even more pumpkin would be yummy!

Frosting these is somehow very therapeutic. I always do it when the rolls are warm. You can use as much or as little as you wish.

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This next step is very important. Get one out of the pan right away, sit down, take a deep breath, don’t think about anything else, and dig in. The first bite will get you feeling like this is what’s been missing from your life. The next bite will ensure that it will never be missing again. Ever.

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Are you doing a Pumpkin Spice Roll happy dance? Maybe it’s just me but I’ve been known to break out in dance when I eat something so good!

The day I made these, I was home alone.  I’ve been on a really clean eating plan and I haven’t had any sugar for a few weeks. Don’t even get me started on why I ever thought that was a good idea. That all flew out the window when I pulled one of these out of the pan to take photos. I was already sipping a glass of homemade cold brew (full of cream and pumpkin pie spice). I couldn’t resist and ate one of these big rolls in a matter of seconds. I love all the things about them and I enjoyed the heck out of it with my afternoon coffee. Feelings of comfort and joy came over me and I actually felt pretty darn happy in that gooey, pumpkin, spice filling, frosting, coffee moment!

I took one with me to give Carrie when I picked her up from school. She immediately lit up, thanked me, inhaled it in the car and got right to her homework as soon as she walked in the door.  See?  Life changing.

From the heart,
Shannon

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Pumpkin Spice Rolls
Dough
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/3 cup unsalted butter, cut up, room temperature
4 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 3/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 cup lukewarm whole milk
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 1/2 tsp instant yeast or active dry yeast

Filling
1/3 to 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar, packed (you can use light or dark or mix them)
3 to 4 TBSP pumpkin pie spice

Icing
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 TBSP unsalted butter, softened
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract or bourbon or maple syrup
3-4 TBSP whole milk

Directions
To make the dough: Place milk and sugar in your mixing bowl.  Sprinkle the yeast on top and let sit for 4-5 minutes.  Add remaining dough ingredients to bowl and mix together and knead all of the dough ingredients to make a smooth, soft dough. You may need to add more flour if it’s too sticky.

Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, turn to grease all sides, cover the bowl, and let the dough rise for 60 minutes, or until it’s nearly doubled in bulk.

To fill and shape the buns: Gently deflate the dough, and transfer it to a lightly floured work surface. Roll the dough into a ~16″ x 21″ rectangle.

Spread the dough with the 1/3 to 1/2 cup butter. Write a cute word or note in the butter (do it!). Mix the brown sugar and pumpkin pie spice, and sprinkle it evenly over the dough.

Roll the dough into a log and cut it into 12 slices (about 1 inch thick).
Place the buns in a parchment lined and buttered 9″ x 13″ pan. Cover the pan and let the buns rise until they’re nearly doubled, about 30 minutes. If you aren’t planning to bake now, stick in the fridge and get them out about about an hour ahead of baking time.

While the buns are rising, preheat the oven to 400°F.
Uncover the buns, and bake them until they’re golden brown, about 15 minutes. While the buns are baking, make the icing. You can also make the icing ahead of time and keep it in the fridge for days, just let it soften up.

To make the icing: In a small bowl, beat together the cream cheese, butter, sugar, and vanilla.

Remove the buns from the oven. Spread the icing on the buns while they’re warm.
Serve buns warm, or at room temperature. Wrap in plastic and store at room temperature for a day or so; freeze for longer storage.
Yield: 12 large buns.

Week 4: Exceeding our goal AND a sneak peek at Rosie!

Hello!  Wow!  At this exact minute, Kickstarter site shows 40 hours remain on our campaign.  Yikes!  We did it, everyone!  I’m so excited and overwhelmed and can’t wait to get out there and bake my heart away!  Our progress went quickly and all the support and words of encouragement have made this such an amazing experience!

  IMG_0417   Progress Halfway   Progress 75  Progress 100

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Today, I went to visit Noah at American Vintage Camper.  I have been dying to see Rosie and want to share all the details with you!  I didn’t really know what to expect but I’m happy with where she is and the plans for the next couple weeks!  Noah told me she will get her beautiful black and white floor tiles today and he’s ready to start covering the exterior and she’ll head to the painter late next week.  I am in the process of ordering all the equipment so Noah can install all the good stuff!  We are really rolling!

This is Noah, the master builder! (sorry it’s a little blurry)

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Here’s Rosie!  This is the service window side.

IMG_0661I had to climb in and get my picture!  Oh my gosh, so amazing!  This will be super fun!

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Here’s a view of the other side.  We’ll have a little door on this side.

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Here’s one more from a different angle of that side.

IMG_0670Seriously, how cute is she?  I can’t wait to see the next phase and share it with you!  I’ll be putting together all the Kickstarter reward info and thank you pages over the next week along with finalizing details for community events I want to be part of. I am so happy you are part of this, thank you!

From the heart, Shannon

We did it (on wonderful timing, too)!

Progress 100

If you didn’t hear the big SCREAM last night at 10:45 then you are just finding out that WE HIT OUR GOAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This is incredible!! Thank you for all you’ve done to make this happen! We are truly blessed to have so many generous and kind people in our lives! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU!

Want to hear something really neat?  If you watched our video or if you’ve read our story, you know my grandma was a big influence in my life.  Well, today would have been her birthday!  What a way to pay tribute to someone who touched so many with her cooking and baking!  This dream is about to become a reality and it’s all because of you!  I’m truly touched!

The campaign will stay active until our end date of 3/22/15. Please keep sharing and let’s see how far we can go!

Floured Apron Kickstarter

From the heart, Shannon

New reward level and incentive added!

Pink campers cropped FB post

We made a slight change to the apron giveaway!  We’ve made a new reward level for a LIMITED EDITION apron!

We’ve connected with a local seamstress who is custom making some adorable aprons for us! We’re really excited to wear them the first day we introduce Rosie to our community!

Our goal is just within reach!

Thank you for your support and please keep sharing–we’re almost there!!!   From the heart, Shannon

Floured Apron Kickstarter Campaign

Week 2 (almost): AMAZING!

Progress Halfway

What an AMAZING week!  We are 57% to our goal (a little ahead of the two week mark)!

In the last update I shared so many kind words from many of our backers.  This week I’d like to share a private message I received from one of our new backers:

“More than happy to back floured apron I didn’t get to tell you but your frosting is the only frosting I’ve ever had that tastes like my grandmas, which made me really happy. Super corny but I jut wanted you to know!!  I was honestly so excited and taken aback, sure do miss her! I had the blueberry lemon and I can’t remember what the other white one was I think raspberry in the middle! “

This captures the true essence of what I love about baking and why I am so excited to get out there and share with as many people as I can!

Bake people happy…Rosie can’t get here soon enough!

Thanks to all of you for your support!  I know we can reach our goal!  Please keep sharing and please know your generosity means the world to me!   xoxo

From the heart, Shannon

Week 1: Happy Campers!

Rosie Drawing 3

Today marks one week since we launched our Kickstarter project.  We are 31% funded!  Woo hoo!  If you had told me a week ago that I’d spend every single day in tears, I wouldn’t believe it.  Happy tears.  Tears of gratitude.  Tears of tremendous joy.  Thank you is not enough!

Friends and family and people I don’t yet know have touched me this week in many ways.  I am going to share what is probably too much info.  What the heck?  We are all human and I find life to be one big learning opportunity so, here goes. 

Since moving my oldest daughter to college in North Carolina and, immediately after, moving the rest of us from Cincinnati to NE Ohio, I have struggled.  I felt lost and alone and wondered what my purpose was in this world.  I had feelings of sadness that I wasn’t prepared for.  We faced many challenges moving into our house, I missed my daughter terribly and I had no idea how to restart my baking business in an area where I didn’t really know anyone.   All of that coupled with trying to adjust to not working at the corporate job I’d had for my entire adult life, left me confused and, for the first time in my life, not certain about anything.

That was a little over a year ago and those first several months were filled with many not so happy tears.  My plan was to establish and run Floured Apron in our new location.  Unfortunately, I had no idea how hard it would be to start over!  Fortunately, all the things I was trying that weren’t working, lead me to ideas that I hoped would work. 

I realized I’d have to approach the model very differently than the home based model I was doing in Cincinnati.  So, I picked up some courage and got out there.  I introduced myself to people and shared my baked goods.  One connection quickly lead to three more and, before I knew it, I was starting to envision a plan.  

The plan was that I had to get the business out of my home and into the community.  Storefront?  Food truck?  I spent weeks researching and analyzing all the options.  I was looking at food trucks online and found a picture of a camper that was renovated into a darling camper that was used to sell baked goods.  My obsession began!  I knew I had to have one and that it was the perfect way to share Floured Apron with others!  I wanted it but had no idea how to get it since money was already tight.

I agonized over the decision to build a camper/mobile bakery thing.  That decision meant I’d need to make a significant financial commitment.  I had feelings of guilt and was full of turmoil inside.  How could I do this?  How can I justify us not taking another vacation or saying no to doing things we want to do, just to focus on my business?  I, me, mine…It wasn’t just about ME and MY business.  The work and development of Floured Apron was a family effort.  This wasn’t just my dream.  It was our dream and what I realized was we all took joy from the business we built. How amazing would it be for two young girls watch their mom do something different?  Take a risk and pursue a dream.  Fail.  Succeed.  Many valuable lessons could be learned from this endeavor.  This hard decision would impact all of us and all of us were excited and proud to move ahead!

Once I decided I had to take this next step or I’d need to give up on Floured Apron once and for all, I prayed and spent weeks mapping out all the pros and cons.  Many things happened over this time.  I’m being completely honest with you, I received multiple, random signs that I had to chase my dream.  It was as if someone was following me around telling me to do this.  I was seeing vintage campers everywhere and I wasn’t even looking!  I saw them on greeting cards, wallets, key chains, posters.  I was at a shoe store in the check out line and there was a pair of socks with campers on them just staring at me (now, I own them!).  Okay, I got it, let’s do this! 

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I pulled the trigger and drove to meet with Noah at American Vintage Camper near Columbus and handed him a check, shook his hand and took a big deep breath.  

From that moment, I have constantly second guessed myself.  After last Friday, the second guessing has completely gone away.  I know this is my path and this is one of the many purposes I have on this earth.  I didn’t launch Kickstarter to get compliments and wonderful things said about me; that was not the objective.  I wanted to raise more money and generate awareness for the business. 

I had no idea that I’d get something much more important and meaningful in return. 

At this one week mark, I thought it would be great to share all the fantastic things people have said.  The many prayers I prayed and the outpouring of encouragement are what dreams are made of.  Dreams are wonderful but they are also difficult.  It takes a tremendous amount of courage and passion to do something that feels so right but presents you with many obstacles and loads of stress.  I now understand why people give up.  They don’t give up because they are failures or losers.  They give up because life is hard and it will knock you down.  People can be mean and their negative words or lack of compassion and help can destroy those dreams.  People can also be giving, kind and unselfish and can make your dreams come true.  That’s what is happening for me.  I’m blessed, I’m touched and I’m completely in awe of the generosity and love so many have shown.  I am privileged to follow this path.

If I fall on my face, I will do so with a big smile!  I can’t thank you enough for showing me that people are good and they want goodness in this world.  I promise I will spend every minute with Rosie sharing the kindness you have so graciously shared with me.  Check out all the lovely words that have been shared with me via Facebook, texts and emails.  If you’re so inclined, share something nice with someone.  I’m living proof that kind words and actions can truly transform a heart and soul.

From the heart, Shannon

I’m excited for you to realize your dreams.  It’s ok to be scared and to be nervous…I know I was back when and even still today.  Just keep believing in yourself.  You’ll have 1001 obstacles…each challenging your commitment to your dream.  Stay steadfast in your approach and desire to win and you can overcome all of them.  Leverage mentors during this process.  They are incredible assets.  You’ll do this!

You are very welcome!  I love seeing your posts and I am a big fan of your business.  Good luck Shannon and thanks for the note! I hope the family is well.

Shannon was such a huge part of my life when I was younger, and this is my way of saying “thank you” for being such an inspiration, to me and one of my good friends Hannah.  Shannon and Hannah taught me kindness, happiness, and invited me into their mother/daughter love. I am truly greatful for both of them! Good luck Floured Apron!

GREAT JOB Shannon Brooks Keibler!! So excited for my Sister-in-law!! Everything she makes melts in you mouth. Please share and support her NEW ADVENTURE!!

“Bake you happy.” I love it! I love you and I love Rosie! So cute. I love the video.

Shannon…..such exciting news! So happy for you. I miss your delicious cupcakes….they are amazing.

Please check out my cousin Shannon Brooks Keibler’s Kickstarter for her bakery going mobile! Not just because she’s my cousin but she makes some of the most amazing Baked Goods I’ve ever eaten.

I am so proud of you!  You have followed your dreams, you are so inspiring and I love you all so much!

could not be more excited for Shannon Brooks Keibler! She is an incredibly talented baker and everything she makes is divine! Couldn’t think of a better person to help reach their goals and dreams!!! Excited to see how Rosie comes to life! Check out her Kickstarter video here.

Check out my sister-in-law’s campaign! I’m so proud of you, Shannon!

Working with Shannon has been a great learning experience and opportunity for me.  So glad to finally see her KickStarter for Rosie the mobile bakery. Check out her amazing story and make a donation to a local business with big dreams for 2015!

So happy to support Shannon as she takes her dream to the next level!  Can’t wait to see pictures of your bakery, camper style!

I am so excited for my friend Shannon! Please watch AND share AND donate!!

I’m so excited for you Shannon!!! I wish you could be mobile in Cincy. We miss you guys…& your delicious treats!

Good luck!

Congrats to you Shannon! I know this is such hard work. Good luck with Rosie!

Loved your video good things come to those who work hard and have love in their heart

I LOVE that video!!!  It’s amazing.  what a totally wonderful, one-of-a-kind idea!  honestly, that video is charmed.  way to go shannon!

Great video..all I want is a cinnamon roll right now.

Awesome story. Best wishes for your business may you find health, much fun and prosperity!

Just read it…how fun is that?! Good for you!

 This is awesome Shannon!  I am excited for you.

Blessings on your endeavor Shannon

Love it!! Will you make a trip back to cincy with Rosie? 

Yay!!! this is so awesome!!!

We want to support your business!  So happy to help my friend!

Floured Apron is going mobile!

You may have heard the news!  We are taking our home based business to the next level this spring!

Meet Rosie (pictured below), our vintage inspired mobile bakery and the newest member of the Floured Apron family.  Now we can share more of what we love with the community we love!  We are so excited!

In the meantime, we are trying to secure additional funding for the equipment we need.  We hope you’ll consider helping us get Rosie to her full potential. 

All the details are available here:   Kickstarter

Share it with EVERYONE and, most importantly, come see us this spring!  Stay tuned for updates on Rosie’s progress and her grand introduction.

From the heart,

Shannon

Rosie Drawing 3