Family

Santa’s Favorite Cookie

It is the time of year, Ol’ Saint Nick’s big trip is near!  He’s making his list and checking it twice.  He’s a way you can have fun and be nice!  Santa will be coming down the chimney soon, here’s a fun way to enjoy a sweet treat and some suspenseful anticipation for the little ones in your family.  Help them find out which cookie is Santa’s Favorite with our 2019 Santa’s Favorite Cookie Contest.

Here is how you and your family can share the experience (and cookies!)

  1. Buy a Santa’s Cookie Tray from our Jacksonville, NC bakery location.
  2. Set aside one cookie of each kind for Santa. Then taste-test the extra cookies and guess which one will be Santa’s favorite.
  3. Leave the tray out with a glass of milk and Santa’s Favorite Cookie Voter Card. Sleep tight!
  4. Wake up Christmas morning and see which cookie Santa voted was his favorite!
  5. Post a pic of your results to Facebook and tag with #SantaCookieADC to join the conversation and add your vote!
  6. We’ll post Santa’s ultimate favorite cookie choice for 2018 on December 29th.

Do you think you have the same favorite flavor as Santa?

Santa’s cookie tray has two sets of 7 flavors for a total of 14 cookies, so you have one of each to try too!

Enjoy some extra holiday fun with your family when you order Santa’s cookie tray by phone at 910-346-2347, in the bakery or online.

Boo-tiful Desserts

Halloween is just around the corner.  They’ll be lots of ghosts, goblins and goodies to be found!  If you’re looking for a “boo”-tiful way to celebrate with friends or family, American Dream Cakes Bakery has a team of edible art designers who can help create cookies, cupcakes, cakes and other delicious, fresh desserts that will shine as the centerpiece of your gathering.

Ordering hand-created cupcakes or other edible delights will create smiles all around.  Bring a bright spot to the class, team or office with cheerfully decorated Halloween treats.

Stop by the bakery or contact us to make sure your favorite designs are created in time for pickup.

Fancied This Fall

After a long, hot summer, fall weather is finally arrived in the southeast. Halloween parties and the holidays are just around the corner. As families gather and fall feasts take center stage, classic desserts and traditional flavors add warmth to your events and help create this year’s memories.

Here are some traditional treats fancied this fall season.

What’s better than cheesecake? Pumpkin cheesecake… with a pumpkin mousse and a chocolate drizzle.  If you haven’t tried it yet, you definitely should.

Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin-spice loaf with a sugar glaze, topped with drizzle and pecans, made from scratch seasonally… get yours while it’s available.

Butter Pecan Gourmet Cupcake

Another seasonal favorite, our butter pecan sponge cake with chopped pecans, sweetened milk buttercream icing, and a whole pecan garnish is the perfect bite of fall or order a dozen for the whole crew.

Spiced Caramel Apple Cupcake

Spice Cake, caramel, with apple pie filling, apple infused buttercream with caramel drizzle and chopped pecan drizzle.

Halloween Highlight: No Bones About It

Bring a little spooky with our unique No Bones About It cupcake. Topped with cookie grave dirt and white chocolate skeleton pieces.  Boo!

Pumpkin Spice Halvsie

If you can’t get enough pumpkin spice this season, here is one more treat full of seasonal spice perfect for your family or office to share. Pumpkin spice cake with pumpkin crème filling and pumpkin infused whipped topping. Topped with a caramel drizzle garnish, this is one delicious fall treat.

You’re sure to find at least one delicious dessert to fancy this fall.  Enjoy the season’s best.

A Dozen Delicious Days in October

October is National Family History Month. It’s also filled with many delicious days to celebrate!  We just had to share a few of them with you. Here are a dozen delicious dessert days in October.

1. National Homemade Cookies Day – October 1st

Involve the whole family in a new baking tradition. Grab our Schackrutor cookie recipe, and make a back of beautiful checkerboard cookies at home.  While you wait for them to bake, play a game of checkers and share memories.  If you’re not up to making cookies from scratch, we’ll help you cheat with some fresh-baked cookies from American Dream Cakes Bakery.

 4. National Pumpkin Seed Day – October 3rd

The hallmark symbol of the fall season, pumpkins are everywhere from your local farmer’s market to the front porch.  Did you know that pumpkins must be planted by July 4 to be ready for fall time harvest? October 3rd is a great day to carve your pumpkin and get to those seeds! Learn more about creative ways to use pumpkins this season.

3. Do Something Nice Day – October 5th

Everyone has had one of “those” days.  During rough times, even the smallest gestures can make a huge difference.  Do Something Nice Day offers a chance to be intentional in doing something nice for others. A meaningful gesture can be as simple as a kind word, small note or lending a hand. Of course, grabbing coffee and cookies for your coworkers is nice, too!

4. National Cake Decorating Day – October 10th

Professional cake decorating is like any artistic, creative endeavor.  Design and technical processes vary depending upon the purpose and details desired. Try your hand at decorating a cake, or join us for a behind the scenes look as our cake creation process is explained.

5. National Dessert Day – October 14th

National Dessert Day is the perfect excuse to pick up a sweet treat from your favorite bakery. Take a moment today to celebrate your favorite cookie, cupcake, pies, pastry or other dessert. Drop in to American Dream and celebrate with us. We’ve got plenty to choose from! #nationaldessertday

6. National Chocolate Cupcake Day – October 18th

Chocolate is always a favorite. On October 18th, you have the perfect excuse for an extra chocolate cupcake!  Enjoy our original, moist chocolate cupcake one of our gourmet cupcake options like the Choc-o-holic or Chocolate Covered Strawberry.  Yum.

 

7. National Sweetest Day – October 20th

National Sweetest Day was originally celebrated as Candy Day in 1916.  It’s evolved over time and now the day is set aside to encourage small acts of kindness to inspire others. Share your sweetest moment with someone you love.

8. National Pumpkin Cheesecake Day – October 21st

In the fall, the only thing better than cheesecake is pumpkin cheesecake! Savor October 21st with a slice of delicious Pumpkin Cheesecake.  Trust us, your friends will be jealous.

9. National Boston Crème Pie Day – October 23rd

Okay, Boston Crème Pie isn’t really a “pie” at all, but who cares?!  October 23rd is a day dedicated to digging into our delicious butter sponge cake filled with vanilla custard and topped with chocolate ganache.

Savor National Boston Crème Pie Day with your friends at American Dream Cakes.

10. National Pumpkin Day – October 26th

Fruit or vegetable? A fruit without a sweet taste is commonly accepted as a vegetable, but regardless where you sit on this debate, pumpkin is an October favorite flavor. A whopping 1.5 billion pounds of pumpkins are produced in America. Pick up your pumpkin pie on #nationalpumpkinday!

11. National Chocolate Day – October 28th

Chocolate. Oh, sweet chocolate. Doesn’t it seem like chocolate should have more than one national day? Well, it does! According to U.S. National Confectioners Association, there are four chocolate holidays: July 7, October 28, December 29 and International Chocolate Day, Sept 13. #NationalChocolateDay  Enjoy!

12. National Caramel Apple Day/ Halloween – October 31st

Did you know that National Caramel Apple day is celebrated annually on October 31?  Indulge in a nostalgic treat while you guide the kids around the neighborhood trick or treating.

Have a Happy and Safe Halloween from your friends at American Dream Cakes.

3 Extraordinary and Creative Wedding Proposals To Inspire

Cinderella wedding proposals are the stuff that inspires movies and books. But for some, it less about a fairytale and more about reality.  Enjoy these three extraordinary reality-based wedding proposals.  They’re thoughtful, witty and insanely romantic to boot.

1.An Adventurous Proposal

Sometimes, the road to a proposal isn’t a direct one, as Lisa Bridge learned. Her soon-to-be fiancé did plan to propose to her, but not before he sent her off on an adventure to remember.

Before he proposed to her, her fiancé Gilad Berenstein sent her a note telling her to get an Uber to a local hotel. She admitted to a bystander that she thought she was going to meet her love and her proposal, but instead she was surprised by two friends who were waiting to have tea with her.

Then, Gilad sent her to another location, to a salon, where she got pampered in the company of two more girlfriends. This meetup was also unexpected.

PHOTO: NY TIMES

2. My Love is Deep as…

How deep is your love? Sometimes, a gal may wonder how much her guy loves her, but not Alesha, whose proposal was captured on Earth Porm.

Alesha’s boyfriend escorted her into the depths of the world’s biggest cave before he took a knee and proposed to her, surrounded by the rolling rocks and lush, grassy hills of the cave’s depths.

Photo: EarthPorm

And for the ultimate effect, the moment included a swath of sunlight from a natural skylight above to light the moment perfectly.  Sigh… and what a photo op!

How deep is your love, indeed?

3. A Little Girl Makes Three…

Getting married to someone who already has children takes a certain amount of class and sensitivity. Steven DeLuca found himself in such a predicament and rose the occasion with style.

Here’s the scoop.

His intended, Sophia Tang, had a seven-year-old daughter that DeLuca wanted to include in the process of formalizing their new family. So what did he do? He bought her a miniature ring of her own.

DeLuca explained that just as the girl’s mother’s ring demonstrated DeLuca’s devotion to her mother, the heart-and-diamond ring he gave Tang’s daughter represented his commitment to her as well.

Photo: NY TIMES

Definite points for style and class.

Final Words

The most memorable proposals are rooted in the unique aspects of your partner and your relationship. To create a meaningful proposal, look for things in your life that mean the most now and will in the future. These shared and meaningful experiences provide inspiration and will show your thoughtfulness in an extraordinary, personal proposal.

MidSummer in Sweden

American summers are filled with long-anticipated family vacations, patriotic historical holidays, and pool-side picnics. The kids are out of school and parents are working hard during the week to enjoy the long, summer weekends creating lasting memories. Meanwhile, across the pond, the Swedish community celebrates their summer a little differently.

The Midsummer celebration has been tradition in Sweden for hundreds of years, with the earliest recorded celebration in the 13th century. Prior to the 1950’s, Midsummer was celebrated at the high point of summer, June 24th, or the longest day for the region. In 1952, Swedish parliament decided that Midsummer should always take place over a weekend and declared the third Friday of June as the official holiday date. The observance of Midsummer now varies between June 20th and June 26th each year.

Midsummer is celebrated soon after the start of Sweden’s five-week annual summer vacation which gives everyone time to prepare and enjoy the festivities. With Sweden’s vast countryside in full bloom and large gatherings taking place to celebrate the beauty of nature and warmth of the sun, it’s no wonder Midsummer Eve is such a big deal!

Families typically begin the day by picking fresh flowers and making wreaths to decorate the maypole. The maypole is raised up in a central location in or near the town and then decorated with the flowers of each family and invited guests. Traditional songs and ring dances such as the Sma Grodonra’ (frog dance) are performed.

 

Midsummer is rich in tradition including a traditional Midsummer Menu that differs slightly depending on region. Regardless of where, your sure to find a smorgasbord of delicious foods and desserts including pickled herring (as Swedish favorite), boiled potatoes topped with dill, red onion, sour cream and chives, grilled and smoked salmon or ribs, cheese pies, crisp bread with butter, and possibly fresh strawberries with cream for dessert. With a celebration of this measure, a bit of drinking will surely be found, specifically, Schnapps called brannvin is served before and alongside the feast. Some regional traditions state when an empty glass is refilled, a drinking song must commence!

A centuries-old celebration wouldn’t be complete without a bit of superstition. Legend has it, young women are to pick seven various flowers on their way home from the celebration and lay them under their pillows. That night, their future husband would appear to them as they dream. Weddings are also quite popular this time of year in Sweden as the sun is out and the flora have bloomed.

The Swedish Midsummer celebration was originally celebrated as a summer solstice confirming that the harvest has been planted and to goad Mother Nature into providing a bountiful outcome.  Now it is a time to celebrate growth, new life, and the beauty of nature. It is a chance for generations of Swedes to gather together and celebrate their common heritage. This summer, while you are out enjoying the warm sand and refreshing waters of the USA, take a moment to think about your own roots and celebrate the seasons as your ancestors did.

Stay tuned and follow Gunilla on our bakery Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/americandreamcakes/ as she returns to her Native Sweden during this time of year and posts of her journey visiting local bakeries and family!

Graduation Cakes – Graduation Day is Coming!

Graduation Day. A day to signify the end of a season and the beginning of a new. 15 years in the making, and they are finally reaching that exciting day to celebrate all the hard work and dedication to education. Planning the perfect graduation party takes time and organization. Let us add the perfect, tasty piece to their special day. Much like party planning, planning for a cake takes time. If you are looking to partner with American Dream Cakes, please call ahead and make an appointment to discuss the many design options for your grad’s cake.

If you’re looking to order a sheet cake, a 2-4 week notice is recommended for ordering basic designs. 1/4-sheet cakes serve 16-24. 1/2-sheet cakes serve 32-48. Full-sheet cakes serve 64-96.American Dream Cakes can place high resolution photographs on sheet cakes to personalize for the special day. Please note, professional photographs require a signed release from the photographer to place on cakes.

Don’t Forget College Grads!

Graduating from college deserves a special cake! We’ve made many over the years and enjoy making something custom for each Grad. It’s important to start early in the process of making the decisions for design and style wanted. Many cakes require weeks, sometimes months of prep work and time to get written permission to use and create copyright protected University logos, mascots etc. We bake and decorate all of our cakes fresh which limits the amount of orders we can accept for each date. It’s never too late to inquire about availability, but we recommend placing orders 2-4 weeks in advance for Basic designs and 2-4 months for tiered and sculpted cakes.

Sheet Cakes are also a great option for College grads. Make it personal with 2 & 3D fondant work. Fondant work takes a minimum of 1 week to create. The sooner you can plan and order your custom cakes, the better!

Whether it’s for your High School or College grad, American Dream Cakes can make it delicious and memorable. To schedule your cake design consultation, please contact us today!

7 Amazing Military Wedding Photos

If you live in Eastern NC, you may have seen a military wedding or two.  The Army, Air Force and Coast Guard have installations in North Carolina, but it’s the strong presence of the United States Marine Corps in Jacksonville and Cherry Point that have given rise to many Onslow County military weddings.

Couples can be transferred to our area right in the middle of planning their wedding, or be stationed to USMCB Camp Lejeune right after completing training, a tour of duty or a deployment.  These changes often set relationships in motion toward the altar. Couples often want to demonstrate pride in the Marine and heritage of the Corps.  Here are 7 military wedding photos that are our favorites to celebrate marriage and the military.

First, we look to Rey Benasfre of Life & Love Creative. Rey is currently an active duty member and an avid photographer.

We’re in love with these photos from Madeline Jane Photography.  Passing a love note before the wedding is reminiscent of letters from boot camp and special messages during deployments.  And inclusion of the dress blues cover and dog tags with her bouquet of red, white and blue pay tribute to the significance of the military marriage commitment.

This photo from Elise Abigail Photography captures the traditional moment of welcoming a bride to the Marine Corps family with the Arch of Swords.

And one of our favorite playful photographs comes from KatelynMann (Pinterest)

The military, particularly the Marine Corps, is a large part of life in Eastern North Carolina, so military weddings are a favorite way to celebrate the love that supports our service men and women.  There are great photographers that take help incorporate the pride of military service into the day that starts a military life together… and it can be beautiful.

Make life easier with our printable Chic Wedding planner download:

Make Mother’s Day Extra Sweet

We love celebrating Mom on Mother’s Day! She’s always been there for us, so it just seems right to pause and give some extra love and attention to Mom.

Ever wondered how it all started?

The origins of Mother’s Day are found just before the Civil War.  In West Virginia, Ann Reeves Jarvis helped to organize “Mothers’ Day Work Clubs” to help women learn to care for their children.

After the war, these clubs helped unify a region still reeling from the conflict. In 1868 Jarvis organized “Mothers’ Friendship Day,” where mothers gathered with former Union and Confederate soldiers to promote reconciliation.

In 1870, abolitionist and suffragette Julia Ward Howe wrote the “Mother’s Day Proclamation,” uniting mothers to promote world peace. In 1873 Howe campaigned for a “Mother’s Peace Day” to be celebrated every June 2.

After Ann Reeves Jarvis died in 1905, her daughter Anna Jarvis began the work to create a holiday known as “Mother’s Day.” By 1914, she succeeded when President Woodrow Wilson signed the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day.  Later in life she opposed the commercialization of the day, but the deed was done.  Mother’s Day is now famous for cards, flowers, phone calls home and more.

Make this Year Extra Sweet

If you’re looking for a special way to make Mother’s Day a little extra sweet, we have plenty of inspiration at the bakery.  Stop by or give us a call and we can help you brighten Mom’s day with a pretty cake, delicious cookies, a Raspberry Dee-light Torte or a number of other delicious treats.

Who knew love came with frosting or a chocolate drizzle?!  We did!  And we’re ready for you and Mom this year.

Whatever her favorite flavor, we can help you say “I love you, Mom” with just the right touch of sweetness.

 

Cookin’ Up Spring Specials

Spring is in full swing in Jacksonville, NC!  The bees are pollinating, Bradford pear trees are blooming, and American Dream Cake specials are hopping!

We have specials for your Spring occasions.

Easter Specials

Share and enjoy One Dozen Easter Cupcakes for only $19.95. 

Surprise the kids with an Easter Bunny Cake for $19.95.

More Spring Specials

Hosting a garden party, tea party or spring social?  Bring One Dozen Flower Cupcakes for $19.95 and you’ll be the toast of the party!

Looking for something other than a cupcake?  Who can resist a sugar cookie?  Bring home One Dozen Sugar Cookies with Sprinkles for $19.95 and make your entire family smile.

Don’t forget Saint Patrick’s Day!  This year, celebrate the Irish green with One Dozen St. Patrick’s Day Cookies for $24.95 or One Lb. of St. Patrick’s Day Tea-Cookies for $18.95.

Celebrate all the beauty that Spring can bring, and make sure your get-togethers have amazing sweets from American Dream Cakes.