Where the Wild Things Are Birthday Party + Cakes!

My youngest son turned one and we had the cutest little Where the Wild Things Are birthday party to celebrate! I love throwing birthday parties for my boys. As they grow older, I try to do smaller birthday parties with a few of their little friends over. But when they are still very little, I like to keep it within the family for the celebration, and get a bit more into the party planning!

When I knew my youngest was turning one soon, I invited everyone over to our favorite park (because heaven knows they all wouldn’t have fit in our little apartment, and also all of our apartment was in boxes for our move). The park had a cute pavillion, plenty of shade, and lots of tables for family to sit at and enjoy. I decorated everything like a jungle (with the wind against me at full force, I wanted to cry it was so windy!). It all still worked out, though. We had all-fruit popsicles, fruit infused waters, and cute little soda drinks for our families to enjoy. Also, lots and lots of cake was to be had – and that’s what I wanted to share with you all today! I unfortunately won’t be sharing the recipes (keeping them close to the vest for a long-time project in the works), but I will definitely share the details for each one.

My sons and I love this book with all our hearts. We’ve been reading it together since before they will ever remember. It’s always been very dear to us and a favorite addition to their children’s book collection. I wanted to do this theme with my first son’s birthday party, but ended up doing a different children’s book instead. So I’ve been saving this theme forever, and couldn’t wait to use it for our littlest man’s first birthday party!

I wanted the first cake to look like a crusty tree stump. Most of the book takes place in the wild jungle, and I loved the way this cake turned out to represent that part of the story. The inside is a fudge chocolate cake, the frosting is peanut butter frosting, and the “wood bark” is straight up melted chocolate. To make the chocolate bark details, I spread out melted chocolate on a flat piece of parchment paper. Then I carefully rolled it up (long-ways) and placed it in the freezer for a few hours. As the chocolate hardens, it kept it’s half rolled up shape. I was able to unroll the parchment paper and have these lovely long rolls of “tree bark” to use for the side of the cake. 

I had a little trouble though, with the chocoalte, I have to admit! At first, everything was MELTING like crazy. I couldn’t even place them on the cake without the chocolate melting from the heat of my hands. It was a bit frustrating. Then, I discovered that if I just pulled the pieces out one by one from the freezer, and attached them directly to the cake (with some more of that heavenly PB frosting), it would stay on the cake beautifully, and not melt like crazy. If you’re making this cake with this technique, I would definitely keep the cake inside. We served this outside in over 90 degree weather and it got a tad melty. Still tasted amazing, though! 

Next is this small smash cake! It’s filled with funfetti and my classic vanilla frosting (with a touch of almond for good measure). I swirled the sides with my cake knife, and made the crown out of fondant. I thought it would be tricky to get the crown to stay vertical, but I figured out a good trick to get the right shape and stability for the crown. I made the crown flat, cut out the spikes on top, then wrapped it around (silly, but whatever works, right?) a oatmeal cylinder container wrapped in plastic wrap. I left it there all night and it completely dried out in the most perfect shape. After my son dug into this cake on his birthday, guests at the party came over with their forks to try out the cake, too! It was that good! 

This next one turned out to be a favorite on my Instagram page. 🙂 

In the “Where the Wild Things Are” children’s book, there’s a line where “an ocean tumbled by with a private boat for Max, and he sailed off through night and day and in and out of weeks and almost over a year to where the wild things are.” 

The inside was a lemon cake with my fresh white chocolate raspberry frosting with a couple fresh raspberries tossed in just for fun between the layers. It was SO yummy! I decided fondant would be a good contrast to the other cakes. Fondant is usually the devil to me. I hate it and love it all at once. But this one turned out better than I thought it would, haha. 

I rolled out long strips of fondant about 2 inches tall and maybe 8-10 inches long with a slight ombre from white to dark blue with each strip. I used my pizza cutter to make a slight wave on the top of each strip to look like the waves of the ocean in the book. I covered the top of the cake with white then wrapped it top to bottom, white to blue, sticking the fondant to the cake with a touch of corn syrup. It turned out cute, I think, and seemed to be the favorite cake. 

Okay, so this cake didn’t really have a theme to it as pertaining to the book. But I’ve been dreaming of a nutella frosted cake with banana chocolate swirl forever, and it was time to try out what I’ve had planned in my head. I actually have small black book of cake recipes and ideas I keep for when random ideas pop up. This one has been in there for a while and I couldn’t wait to try it. 

IT WAS THE BEST ONE, guys. SO SO SO much yum going on here. 

The inside was my banana cake marbled with a bit of cocoa cake. The outside was frosted with my new nutella buttercream frosting, the outsides were rolled with a bit of chocolate sprinkles, and then the top was adorned with walnut crumbles and cherries on top. We originally had raspberries on top, and decided the cherries would look better. So that’s why the top is a bit on the funky side. Oh, and that chocolate ganache drip was sent by the Gods, I tell you. Everything tied together so beautifully with all the cakes, but especially the flavors for this one. 

We invited just family this time (and my decorations blew around in the wind like crazy! I wasn’t able to set up nearly half of what I brought. Thank you West Jordan. No really). 

Everything was on the cheap. We were days away from moving from our apartment and I didn’t want to have to plan much. It turned out darling and everyone who came had a really fun time playing at the park, eating cake and popsicles, sipping on soda and fruit infused waters, making their own crowns, parading around with their bubble swords, and most importantly, celebrating our youngest turning one with his very own Wild Rumpus birthday party. 

Happy Birthday, little man! 

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