Choo Choo Cupcakes

April 15, 2011 at 12:40 PM | Posted in cupcakes | 24 Comments
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Good afternoon dear readers. I’ve missed you.

(But I’ll update you on my absence at the end of the post.)

I have so many things on my honey-do list today but I choo choo choose you instead! <– I can't take credit for that line. Credit is due to the amazing writers of The Simpsons (my husband has loved that show for the last 21 years!). I hear that line often in our house. *cheesy alert*

Get it? B/c I’m talking about train cupcakes today… Oh come on. That was an awesome segway.

So let’s talk cupcakes facebook.

Many ppl say that facebook is a very impersonal way to keep in touch with family and friends but I disagree! Life happens and I don’t have time to call all my friends and family every day to chat for hours at a time about what’s going on in their life. (Another reason why I love text-ing too.) But on Facebook I can get online for an hour between cooking dinner for Husband and him inevitably asking me where he left his keys and frantically searching for them, to catch up with my “friends”, their life, their pictures, their daily statuses (or is it statusi?) etc. Honestly it’s win-win for me. I promise this tangent has a point.

My best friend from high school and I keep in touch via Facebook mostly. She has a new baby girl and as all new moms out there know… she’s busy all the time. But we try to get together often to catch up face-to-face too. When she asked me if I would bake some cupcakes for her friend’s son’s 3rd birthday via a Facebook message, of course I said yes. I haven’t baked in 5 weeks! (Again I’ll explain why at the end of the post.) She gave me a few criteria. Boy’s name, his age, 1/2 chocolate 1/2 funfetti and his Thomas The Train love. And I was off.

First I cut out fondant circles for each topper. Blue=2-1/4″ circle cutter. Red=1-3/4″ circle cutter. White and Gray=1-1/2″ circle cutter. I adhered the circles together with clear vanilla extract and small food designated paintbrush. You can use water too. (Easy enough so far right?) Then I cut out the letters with my mini alphabet cutters. I think I got the set from William Sonoma. But don’t quote me.

To make the Thomas The Train face, I cut out the eyes with the smaller end of a Wilton #2 tip. The mouth was made using the larger end of Wilton #2 tip and then cut in half in a crescent shape with the same tip. (Gosh I hope that made sense!) Then using all my artistic prowness (yeah right!) I drew the eyeballs, nose, eyebrows and cheeks with thin tip Americolor food markers in black. (I recommend Americolor markers over Wilton markers. They seem to have a more vibrant color and easier flow IMO.) Then I used a pink Americolor marker to color in the mouth but dabbed it with a tissue to make it a little muted before it dried. (That’s about as technical as I get. lol)

I love that picture that my BFF sent me of the birthday boy seeing his birthday cupcakes for the first time. If you look closely you can see him licking his lips. <– That's about the best compliment a baker can get!

Alrighty so reason I haven’t been baking lately. My dirty little secret.

I feel like this could get long. You better pull up a chair.

I joined Weight Watchers (WW) about 7 weeks ago. (I’ve lost 11lbs!) Ironically cupcakes aren’t the reason why. I love to bake but I rarely eat a lot of “what” I bake. It’s not a sweet tooth. It’s a fast food tooth. But it didn’t happen overnight. The weight’s been creeping on since college and I finally decided that it was time to make a change before I see a number on the scale that I’d compare to a horror movie scream.

Unfortunately the plan doesn’t leave me much motivation to bake UNLESS I’m baking for a client. (Although I do have some fun ideas about diet soda cupcakes for a future post!) I actually stopped taking orders after I started WW. My BFF’s order was the first order I’ve taken since starting WW and now that I have a firm grip on the plan, I feel like I can start taking orders again without sabotaging myself with a lick here and a taste there. Because any baker will tell you that quality assurance is a necessary sacrifice we make … for the customer. HA HA!

So there you have it.

I didn’t go to Pastry school. (If someone wants to front me a scholarship I won’t say no.)
I didn’t go to rehab. (Should I be worried that someone thought that?)
I’m not pregnant. (Although maybe Facebook friends did not appreciate that joke on April Fool’s Day!)

Rather the contrary. I wanna lose weight. I wanna get healthy. I wanna get more active. (I’m running 3x/week, Zumba 1x/week, signed up to run my first 5K in July… eek!) So if I ever do get pregnant, I can celebrate my baby weight gain instead of wallowing in lament of gaining weight. And that’s all I’ll say about that.

Please feel free to share your WW or weight loss stories with me via comments. I’d love to hear.

Happy Friday dear cupcake friends.



  1. I joined WW as well. I haven’t done as great on the plan… but I have lost a couple pounds. For me it’s so hard because if I do eat out (which my work schedule not only requires it, they actual order it and go pick it up!), I always tend to eat at non-chain restaurants. And calculating the points of stuff like that is sometimes impossible and just annoying. :P It does still keep me accountable, as my main problem is little snacks throughout the day (those spoonfuls of peanut butter add up!), and alcohol. Which I don’t drink much, but when you look at it in WW points… WOWZA!

    I just wanted to add, I’ve discovered a lot of GREAT recipes on WW’s website!!

  2. Erin, are we FB friends? I can’t believe we aren’t! B/c if not we NEED to be FB friends so we can discuss further! Email me your full name so I can find you (unless you don’t wanna be friends… *nervous giggle*)

  3. My husband and I started a fitness program 7 weeks ago and we have 5 more weeks to go. We are getting 45 minutes of nutrition education and then a 45 minute work out. I just can’t make the time to exercise any other day of the week. My weakness is that we eat out almost constantly because of how much we are on the go. And now I moved my office from my home to a real office and it’s much harder to stay on the plan. I’ve lost a few pounds and probably gained some muscle. I’m easily down one pants size, which is good, but I’m already starting to get the cravings again for the bad foods. :( Good luck with the WW!

  4. Clara…..I have been “dieting” since October due to being diagnosed with hypothroidism. I have lost about 25 pounds but have recently hit a plateau. I’m not on any official plan like weight watchers, just low fat and low cholesterol. I don’t know which websites you’ve been to but two that have been very helpful to me are that is weight watchers geared and the 3 Fat Chicks forums at GOOD LUCK!!!

  5. Good for you Clara! Losing weight can be so hard! I had a baby a year ago and put on nearly 65 pounds and I will tell you…losing the weight was extremely difficult for me! I was very active during my pregnancy and still gained. It took me a year to get it off. It just takes time and dedication. So I feel your pain ;) I have so many friends that used WW and had great success! Im sure you will do great. Good luck!

  6. Love the cupcakes they are so very cute. Yoga is a great work out and a nice stress relief too!

  7. What an adorable idea! I’ll have to keep this in mind when we get our first Foster child. Thanks for the post. :)

  8. Congrats on the weight loss, Clara! Weightwatchers does great things for teaching people about healthy and non-healthy food choices. Have you tried hot yoga before? I started going to hot yoga regularly last year and have lost about 10 pounds and gotten leaner without any changes in my diet! I highly recommend it =)

    Good luck with the health changes!

  9. Good luck girl!! you are going to do great! keep up the good work! :)

  10. I also just started weight watchers like 3 weeks ago. I like the plan so far and it is definitely the little things that add up. It really helps in the accountability department. I also just started looking at the community/group stuff on the ww site (i am doing the online prog)and that seems like it could also help with motivation and what not :) Best of Luck!

  11. So happy to see a post from you again! I’m proud of you for sticking with this WW thing. You rock!

  12. Good for you! It’s amazing to me how little “nutrition education” I actually know. I’m the same way. Before starting WW, we ate out 5/7 days a week. I know that’s where my weight comes from. The portions are way bigger than you need at restaurants these days but if it’s in front of me, I’ll eat it. Congrats on losing pants size!

  13. Oh Dyanna, hypothroidism is no joke. I’m so glad you are doing what you need to do to overcome it. 25lbs is amazing! I love SkinnyTaste and thanks for the 3FatChicks rec! Good luck to both of us :)

  14. Thank you for your encouragement! Can I ask what you did to lose the post baby weight if it wasn’t WW? I’m doing really well with WW but I’m SO impatient. But I keep reminding myself that it took me 30+ years to gain the weigh so losing is gonna take some time. Slow and steady…

  15. GMTA! I was thinking of signing up for a yoga class!

  16. Oh wow. Congrats on adopting. What a wonderful thing to do for a child. If you make them for him (or her) I’d love to see!

  17. Thank you! I am honestly learning a lot about portions, health, foods, exercise etc. It’s actually kind of surprising how little I realize I know. I remember taking health classes when I was younger but I guess I didn’t pay as much attention as I should have. lol. I have tried hot yoga before! It’s SO hard. It doesn’t seem like it would be hard but it really is! Unfortunately it’s a little expensive per class but I may try to go back soon.

  18. Thanks Steph!! I’ve bookmarked so many of your recipes to try.

  19. Hurray for WW twins! I’m online only too. I’m sure the meetings are very helpful but I just don’t have the time to go every week and I’m very lucky to have a good support group around me already. Good luck to both of us!

  20. Thank you Al! I gotta be honest. The first 2 weeks SUCKED big time. But once you break through that mental food wall and figure out the program it’s very sustainable. You know that Tessa and Dani are doing it with me too right? It’s so much easier to do it with friends :)

  21. I’ve been on WW off and on since 1979 and it works when you “track.” I’m a Lifetime member now and got back to goal again a few months ago. I’m really trying to stay at goal this time. I stick with my points Monday through Saturday and then eat whatever I want (in reason) and that has been keeping me at goal for the past two months. :) WW frozen meals are pretty good when you spice them up with Watkins. Many blessings on your new meal plans! Stick with it, you’ll be glad you did. Rah, rah – You go girls!!

  22. Totally agree. Tracking is key for me. Congrats on maintenance! People tell me that maintenance is harder than losing b/c you can get complacent. (I love having a cheerleader!)

  23. Those are adorable cupcakes, my son would have loved them when he was little.

  24. Thank you! My husband is 30+ and still loves them. Cupcakes know no age ;)

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