Delicious Reads

Shake Up St. Patty’s Day

Whether you are hosting a celebration, or spending a night out with friends, St. Patty’s Day is full of green, festive spirit. Combine healthier habits to your celebration with these three yummy, green smoothie recipes.

Celebrate St. Patty’s day (or nurse your St. Patty’s Day hangover) and celebrate your health!

GOOD LUCK GREEN SMOOTHIE

Start your lucky day with this nutrient packed smoothie. If you are looking for a starter smoothie, look no further. Mild tasting spinach combined with tropical fruit flavors is a win (even the kiddos will love).

Ingredients

2 Cups of Spinach

2 Cups water

1 Cup Mango

I cup Pineapple

2 Bananas (frozen will help chill smoothie)

Instructions

  1. Premeasure the 2 cups of leafy green spinach (tightly packed) then toss in blender.
  2. Blend together with 2 cups of water until all chunks of the leaves are gone.
  3. Add fruits (mango, pineapple, and bananas) and continue to blend until smooth.
  4. Pour into your cup and enjoy!

FUN FACT: The first St. Patrick’s Day celebration in America was held in 1737 in Boston, MA.

HONEY DEW MINT SMOOTHIE

Refresh with a light and fruity smoothie that tickles the sweet tooth.

Ingredients

½ honeydew melon, cut into chunks (about 4 cups)

½ cup light coconut milk

1 -2 leaves fresh min (set aside more for garnish)

½ – 1tsp. fresh lime juice (to taste)

1 cup of ice

Drizzle of honey or coconut nectar, to taste

Instructions

  1. Cut up the melon, remove seeds and outer rind. Slice into chunks.
  2. Add melon chunks, coconut milk, lime, and ice. Blend until smooth.
  3. Taste test, ad add sweetness with honey or your choice of sweetener.
  4. Garnish with mint or fresh melon slice and serve!

FUN FACT: Your odds of finding a four-leaf clover are 1 in 10,000.

SHAMROCK SHAKE

Ingredients

1 ½ oz curly kale – stemmed

1 apple – chopped

1 cup ice

1 banana – peeled

6 sprigs of mint – stemmed

1 cup water

Instructions

  1. Remove kale stems.
  2. Combine ingredients and blend until smooth.
  3. Garnish with mint leaf and serve!

FUN FACT: Shamrocks are the national flower of Ireland. Legend says that each leaf of the clover has a meaning: Hope, Faith, Love, and when there is a fourth leaf, Luck.

Pick a smoothie to try and share with your friends. Snap a photo and share on Instagram or Facebook.  Use hashtag #americandreamcakes so we can find your photos and reshare them on our accounts.

After all the yummy green smoothies, it is time to treat yourself with a yummy “Kiss me I’m Irish Cream” gourmet cupcake for your friends or office today.

Illusion Lace Feature

Lacy wedding gowns are not a new fashion trend, but it is one that’s taking the runway by storm. With an ultra-feminine appearance, illusion lace takes on new feels.

Tattoo Lace

The latest trend in lace is the illusion lace tattoo. Lace combined with sheer fabric give the appearance of a “lace tattoo.” Sleeves, a faux backless gown, or even a more risqué dress of the entire body can sport this unique wedding gown fashion. Sheer fabric and heavier lace give brides warmth for a cooler wedding season.  Wedding gown designers such as Ferretti, Dror, Lela Rose, and others feature the illusion lace trend. Lace patterns can range from flowers to vines.

A look for everyone

Illusion lace gives as much or as little coverage desired. Illusion lace is commonly seen in faux backless details.

Photo Credit: Martin Thornburg for Mon Cheri

 

This Martin Thornburg features illusion lace designs on the back and sleeves. A satin base with lace-appliqued tulle and illusion lace long sleeves completes an inspiring mermaid silhouette wedding gown.

Brides can also showcase this trend without exposing their back by choosing illusion lace sleeves.

Photo Credit: Stella York

This Stella York gown shows the beauty of laser cut lace combined with crepe to create a long-sleeved gown with tattoo lace sleeves.

Photo Credit: Martina Liana

This Martina Liana gown highlights similar long-sleeved lace details. This dress features a beautiful A-line tulle skirt and beaded floral lace appliques that further romanticize the gown.

Bridesmaids can wear it too

Illusion lace is not just for brides. Designers are creating more bridesmaid dresses with illusion lace too.

Image: morilee.com

Want more in boho styles?  Check out “Boho Themed Cake Trends” and “Favorite Boho Wedding Photos.”

 

Top 5 Filling Flavors to Love

A TASTEFUL WEDDING EXPERIENCE

Modern weddings focus on creating an experience for the entire guest list.

It’s important to remember the five senses when creating your wedding experience; sight, smell, touch, taste and sound. Your cake’s beautifiul design is a huge part of the visual experience.  The memorable flavors and decadent fillings you choose create a taste experience for your guests. Fillings help hold the tiers of your wedding cake together and add a range of flavors to your “tasteful” wedding experience!

WAYS TO CHOOSE YOUR FLAVOR

  • Choose cake flavors and fillings that you and your fiance both enjoy.
  • Consider the season of your wedding and the dinner menu. For example, a summer beach wedding may pair well with a citrus or tropical flavored wedding cake. Not only does it compliment the season, it unifies the wedding theme.
  • If you can’t decide on one, choose more! Each layer provides an opportunity to customize your wedding cake and express your love story.

ADC’S MOST POPULAR FILLINGS

We’ve been creating custom cakes for years and there are a few filling flavors that continue to be favorites. Here are some of our most popular filling choices:

  • Raspberry

Raspberries peak in June and are full of antioxidants and vitamin C. White almond or chocolate cake flavors are delicious pairing combonations.Try our Raspberry Dee-Light or Raspberry Chocolate-Fudge gourmet cupcakes for a taste of our rasberry filling.

  • Strawberry

Strawberries’ natural season is April though June. Antioxidants found in strawberries support heart health, and make an easy cake flavor duet. Yellow sponge, vanilla butter, strawberry sponge, and chocolate cake flavors pair well with a strawberry filling. Taste test our Strawberry Meringue, Strawberry on a Cloud, or Chocolate Covered Strawberry gourmet cupcakes to find your favorite.

  • Lemon

Lemon, full of cheer and Vitamin C, is a fitting citrus flavor for the summer wedding season. Pair it with cake flavors such as lemon chiffon, lemon sponge, or white sponge cake for a fresh, light flavor. Try our Fresh Coconut w/ Lemon, Limon, or Zesty Lemon Chiffon gourmet cupcakes.

  • Chocolate Fudge

Combine chocolate fudge filling and rich cake flavors to create a decadent dessert. Pair with cake flavors such as chocolate or strawberry for a romantic vibe.Try our Death by Chocolate, Cookies ‘n’ Cream, or Hurricane gourmet cupcakes.

  • Buttercream

Highlight your cake flavor and accent with buttercream filling. Take your flavors to the next level with the variety of infused buttercream filling options available.

Try our Butter Pecan (seasonal), Chocolate Twigg, or Island Rum gourmet cupcakes.

For more inspiration and ideas, view our gourmet cupcake combinations to explore the various filling combinations we offer.  You can also order a wedding cake and filling tasting kit to sample various combinations you favor.

 

Four Romantic Destination Ideas in Onslow County

Long-term love or just budding, a romantic destination without distractions is the cure for the cold weather blues. From an ocean front weekend getaway, delicious dinner, or an exploring adventure, Onslow County offers some unique romantic destinations.

Beachfront Getaway

Coastal areas tailored for tourists is an ideal area for a local getaway. During colder months, you can rent a beachfront room at reduced, off-season rates. Take advantage of cold weather discounts in sought after beach communities, such as Emerald Isle and Topsail Island. Pack your bags for an overnight or two-night stay.

Pack warm layers including headgear and gloves. This will keep you warm enough to enjoy an ocean front walk with your sweetheart.  Or you can stay indoors and snuggle.

Romantic Tip: Pack your favorite mugs and gourmet hot chocolate or your favorite adult beverage. Bundle up and get cozy while you sip on a toasty drink together.

Romantic Dinners

For your overnight stay or even just a night out, there are a few romantic dinner locations to visit within the area.

According to local Yelp reviews here are top-rated dinner locations in Jacksonville, NC :

  • Duck’s Grille and Bar
    Featuring traditional American and seafood selections along with a sports bar type environment, this restaurant may be ideal for a low-key romantic couple.
  • The Osprey Grill
    As one review describes, there is soft music with a clean, inviting atmosphere ideal for a date. Food selections include steak and seafood along with desserts.
  • Inlet 790
    Located inside the Villa Capriani, Inlet 790’s menu is full of North Carolina’s best seafood dishes. Indoor and outdoor dining options with views of the Atlantic Ocean.
  • Ocean’s Edge Restaurant and Event Center
    Year-round dinner service with panoramic ocean views. Four event spaces are available with a menu offering something for everyone. Special event planning is also available here.
  • White Oak River Bistro
    Located in Swansboro on the waterfront, this 144-seat restaurant t specializes in Italian cuisine.

For a romantic lunch date, try:

  • Barley Wine Café
    Featuring fresh dishes prepared and served with passion and care.  They’re open 8am-2pm M-F and for brunch on Sundays from 9am-2pm.

Things to Do Together

Not enough time for a weekend away, but you are seeking something outside of a romantic dinner date? Here are some creative suggestions for you.

  • Couple’s Massage
    There is very little else that says I love you like a relaxing hour spent getting massages together. Massages help you release past and future concerns. It connects you with the present moment. This allows you both to be in the present moment. Massages help release many feel-good hormones that build feelings of intimacy and affection for you and your significant other.
  • Visit Historic Sites
    Romance can be spending quality time with someone you care about and sharing an interest. Surrounded by rich military and cultural history, there are several historical sites and museums in this area to explore and learn. For example, Swansboro offers a Civil War History walking tour or walk through Lejeune Memorial Gardens.

In the end, romance is simply sharing the love you have for each other and spending quality time together.

Here’s an article about personalizing your romantic evening that can help you add a special touch to your plans.

2019 Wedding Style

2019 wedding styles are sure to inspire you and elevate your wedding plans.  One of the most dominant themes for the year is a move to include the wedding party, family members and guests in the wedding experience. This isn’t just a few new trends, but a completely new view of the dream wedding experience including elements that are evolving the wedding scene.

Focal Floral Centerpieces

Floral pieces have visited tabletops before. They’ve even been hung from the ceiling, but 2018 weddings saw floral tabletop center pieces emerging and rising to new heights. The floral tabletop trend will continue into 2019. It will be exciting to see the creative approaches florists use to expand and personalize this growing design theme.

Weekend Weddings

Weekend weddings are an extended friends and family experience. Capitalizing on a central location, weekend weddings keep guests engaged for more than the ceremony. Guided tours or a list of suggested places to visit inspire local area exploration.  2019’s unique twist has the weekend experience culminating at the wedding on Sunday.

Purple is the New Pink

This year purple is pushing out the blush pinks of the last seasons.  Dominating wedding scene for the past few years, blush is on the way out. Shades of purple from light lavender to bold and dramatic violet hues are in.

Interactive Drink Bars

Fairly fresh on the scene, interactive drink bars continue to develop the truly shared wedding experience for 2019 bridal parties and guests. These stations give an opportunity to customize drinks and strike up conversations.  Guests are not expected to be seated and stationary, but are welcomed to move about, talk to each other and engage socially with food, drink and dancing.

Explore these new and expanding trends as you seek inspiration and plan your wedding.  Have some fun creating an unforgettable wedding experience for you, your fiancé and your guests.

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Custom Cake Showcase

One of the best parts of owning a local bakery is meeting so many wonderful people who live in and visit our eastern North Carolina community. We enjoy hearing stories of celebrations and helping each person create a delicious centerpiece for their special event.  Here’s a showcase collection featuring some of our favorite custom cakes.

Rose Birthday Cake

This elaborate custom cake was an 18th birthday cake for a special young lady who loves roses. It featured strawberry cake, iced in delicious buttercream. Many beautiful, handmade fresh fondant petals transform this birthday cake into a birthday rose.

May the Force Be with You Graduation Cake

Inspired from the Star War’s storm trooper character. “May the Force Be with You” is fitting life advice for any graduating Star Wars enthusiast.

Clover and Tartan Wedding Cake

White buttercream provides bridal tone and beautiful contrast for the rich reds and greens atop this cake. A realistic red and black tartan scarf and green clovers celebrate the couple’s Scottish and Irish heritage.  It’s all deliciously edible.

 “We the People” Fundraiser Cake

“The We the People cake was for a fundraiser, but we’ve made it multiple times since. The document is edible and so are the flowers. The document is printed on our food printer and added to a thin sheet of fondant. The flowers are hand-made. This cake design is a great choice for any patriot, 4th of July or History buff occasion- birthday-celebration.”

~Gunilla

“Happy 3rd Birthday Captain Chance”

A charming custom pirate birthday cake made for Icing Smiles.

USMC 20 Years in Service Retirement Cake

A beautiful four-tier red velvet cake for USMC retirement. Details included the cover, flag, and dress blues. It also features all the countries and states the USMC members had served in over those 20 years of service.

See more American Dream Cake’s custom designs on our Facebook page or Instagram.

 

New Year, New Engagement

With endless lights and decorations, holidays provide a romantic backdrop to inspire wedding proposals. He popped the question, and you said yes!

You are bubbling over with excitement, and ready to start planning your dream wedding. Here are a few helpful suggestions for next steps now that you’re newly engaged.

Initial Family and Friends Announcement

After saying yes, the first “next step” is telling family and friends. Tempting as it is to update your social media status, call family and close friends first. Personal phone calls keep the sense of romance alive.

Establish a General Time Frame for the Wedding

After your initial announcement, the most common question will be, “When is the wedding?”

If you don’t have a date set yet, you can have a general time-frame answer ready. For example, “We’re planning for Spring 2020.”

Protect Your Ring

Your ring is a symbol your love.  And it represents the soon-to-be forever bond between you and your fiancé. Take some practical steps to ensure your ring is well taken care of and protected. Professional ring sizing and insurance are essential practical first steps. Homeowner’s and renter’s insurance policies both should offer ring protection.

Wedding Website

A wedding is one of life’s most meaningful events. So many wonderful updates to share a long the way, it is common for new brides to create a wedding website. The first things to post include: a couple photo, your meeting story, engagement news and a guestbook.

Once you have the essentials up, you share wedding information all along the way, too. Bridal registry information and engaging components like interactive quizzes are fun options for your friends and guests. There are several great wedding website template options to help guide you.

Wedding Planning: Gather Inspiration

Do you have a wedding Pinterest board? If you have been planning for the last 3 years or not, now is the time to dive into your dream wedding details.

Wedding Tip: Choose your décor to support the experience and feel you want your dream wedding to create.

Wedding Budget

Think about your wedding budget.  Will you have help from family or are you and your fiancé taking this on together?  Once you have a figure in mind, create a bank account just for this event.  Track your expenses through the separate account to maintain control of the budget and gauge your progress toward the wedding day.  Written budget sheets and estimates will also help outline each part of the wedding expenses and help you keep your budget focused.

Guest List Request

The size of your wedding guest list and party impacts every element of the wedding itself.  To build your list of potential attendees, ask parents and immediate family for guest list suggestions.  Pull your lists together and estimate the number of attendees you could have.  You can consider your budget and prospective venue sizes to determine the maximum number of guests who will be able to attend.  Remember, not everyone you invite will come, so plan on a decline count, too.   Approximate guest numbers are important for your budget and venue selection.

Wedding Party

Once you have an idea of the budget, guest list, venue, etc., it is time to consider who you will ask to be in the wedding party. Plan a special way to ask your bridesmaids and coordinate a similar plan for asking groomsmen.

Interview Planners/ Vendors

If you will do the planning yourself, schedule potential vendor appointments. Ask friends for references and research reviews to choose initial vendor visits. Arrange interviews and tasting sessions  for caterers and bakeries.  If hiring a planner, the process will be simpler, but you must select a planner you trust and who gets your vision for your wedding day.  Referrals and reviews are helpful.  Meet with top prospects and have a face-to-face conversation.  Trust your intuition.  You’ll know the right planner when you meet them.

Check Dates for Local Area Bridal Expos or Trunk Shows

A great experience for local brides-to-be is to connect with vendors at local bridal expos and events. You’ll enjoy the inspiration offered by many professionals in one location providing you with helpful information for planning your dream wedding.

Enjoy the Moment

Our modern lives are filled to the brim with demands and to-do-lists. Your engagement is important and can be magical.  Take a moment (or more) to allow yourselves to be fully present and savor the experience.

Plan a special time away for you and your fiancé. Turn off your phones, TVs, and screens. Enjoy a quiet, romantic evening together. Talk about the wonderful journey that brought you to the place you are enjoying now.  Stay connected to each other and don’t get lost in wedding details.

ADC Reflections

American Dream Cakes is proud to share the sweet moments of making life delicious.

From wedding cakes, a baby’s first smash cake, to a 70th birthday celebration, we love each custom cake. Inspired by a story or memory, our custom design service connects us to our customer in way we cherish. Unit and community organizations and military ball celebrations are an honor to create for a memorable evening.

Here is a highlight of our favorite moments from our staff to customers and ADC’s trip to Sweden.

Staff Favorite Moments and ADC Events

(Photo: Happy 4th from ADC Bakery Team)

 

(Photo: 17 Years serving Jacksonville Community)

(photo: American Dream Cakes Bakery Booth at ENC Bridal Expo, January 2018 New Bern, NC)

Joining over 70+ wedding experts, American Dream Cakes booth display at ENC Bridal Expo 2018. Bride-to-be’s come from local and surrounding areas for the latest trends’ inspiration.

(photo: American Dream Cakes Bakery Booth Crystal Coastal Bridal Fair Sponsor Jan 2018 Morehead City, NC)

Crystal Coastal Bridal Fair is held annually in Morehead City, NC. Over 50 local area wedding vendors come together for the longest running bridal event on the coast of North Carolina.

Making Life Delicious: Special Cakes

We have the honor of making so many delicious cakes for our customers. Here are the highlights of our favorites this year.

(Photo: First Birthday Flapjack Cake ADC Instagram Image)

This adorable first birthday cake is designed as a stack of pancakes completed with real whipped topping and a strawberry.

Donating to the local community is part of who we are, this 50’s-theme sock hop cake towers at three foot tall. A lot of heart, soul, and ADC creative talent went into this donated community fundraiser cake.

(Photo: Donated 50’s Theme Sock hop Instagram Photo)

International ADC Trip: Sweden

This year has come and gone so quickly!

We’ve been blessed to make so many wonderful cakes and treats for all of you.

We’ve added team members and we’re sad but Proud to see our Sam go off to the Air Force this month.

Gunilla has gone through and recovered from not one but two back surgeries this year.

We’ve all watched Grandbaby Ela grow up and now as she turns One in December, we can’t wait to see what 2019 has in store for all of us!

From all of us to all of you, Merry Christmas and Thank you for a Wonderful 2018!

Randy, Gunilla and Team ADC

 

Wedding Trends 2019

In 2019, the wedding experience includes more than colors, theme or style. A sincere focus is put on small meaningful experiences that include all in attendance.  This is the era of the “experience” and these trends encourage visual and other forms of engagement for wedding parties and wedding guests.

BOLDER COLORS

Brighter, deeper color palettes are on the rise. Specifically shades of purple are trending for not only floral decorations, but event space lighting. While previous years held on to pastel, rustic and shabby-chic vibes, 2019 is bringing forward a more modern and refined elegance.

GROOMSMEN’S ATTIRE

2019 weddings encourage everyone to express a bit of their own, unique style. As with bridesmaids’ dresses that no longer match, groomsmen’s attire is taking personal expression into account.  Expect to see more men in coordinated mix and match pieces.  Look for checkered, dot and floral patterns to flank the groom instead of matching suits or tuxedos.

CEREMONY VENUES

Rustic scenes are taking a back seat to modern industrial.  Green foliage against industrial metallic and architectural backgrounds softens and adds sophistication.  Tailored greenery centerpieces bring coveted green and emerald colors inside for organic beauty.

GO UNPLUGGED

Another trend during ceremony encourages guests to go unplugged. Attendees are asked to power-off or put phones away to engage in the wedding ceremony. Guests share their perspectives, during the reception in real time.  This new “I do” trend is gaining steam as couples, family and friends look for meaningful ways to be “present” during the celebration.

RECEPTIONS

In addition to the bridesmaid and groomsmen mix and match wedding attire philosophy, table settings are being varied as well as wedding registries and more.

Menus in 2019 are offering more individual choice. Smaller plates are paired with more courses to offer each guest low-risk but plentiful food options.  Buffets, food bars, and “build-your-own” options abound – as do mingling and interaction opportunities.  DIY food stations are becoming more popular and creative.  They are tied into wedding themes and increase guests’ interaction, mingling, and experience.

Personal touches like unique, statement place cards create a WOW experience for guests. This is an element that couples can customize to really share a special moment with each guest and recognize them as a part of their wedding.  Creating an interactive, engaging experience for wedding guests allows everyone to enjoy celebrating the couple and their big day.

Boho Themed Cake 2019 Trends

Plenty of brides will be planning boho-themed weddings in 2019!  We’ve got a few new trends and old twists that will make your cake stand out as a beautiful boho themed centerpiece for your wedding day.

Bohemian weddings are wildly popular.  Here are a few bolder 2019 twists.

Bold Floral Elements

While elegant floral elements are a timeless staple to wedding cakes, boho themes added more natural-feeling foliage and colors in floral displays.

Pastels and organic greenery-only schemes are reducing, and bolder colors are moving in. Bright oranges, reds, and jewel tone blooms are arriving on the wedding cake scene.

Industrial Chic  

In recent years, boho themes embodied a rustic feel, but this is evolving into an industrial-chic look that is softened and complimented with natural textures and elements. Wedding spaces have evolved from open barns and gardens into open buildings with metal architecture and modern lines.

Almost Dressed Cakes

Most brides are familiar with “naked cakes” and have watched them evolve into nearly naked. In 2019, you can welcome a new version to the trend: “almost-dressed.” Graceful layers of frosting cover a bit more of the cake, but still allow for bare peeks of the cake beneath.

If you love Boho wedding trends, read up Boho Wedding Dress Trends.