SPCA Bake Sale Success!

Drum roll, please!  Our goal for the SPCA Bake Sale was $3000, and our total so far is $3005!!  We have commitments for more online donations before the end of the year, so we may see that total go even higher!  Woo hoo!!!

We are SO thankful for the wonderful response of the other tenants in our office building, for the online donations from friends and family, and for the support we received from the building management staff.  Above all, we know that this tremendous success is humanly impossible.  A few girls working for a week or so cannot logically bake enough goodies and sell them in one day to make $3000.  It just doesn't make sense.  The only answer is that God did this, and we give Him all the glory for this event!

I talked about the brownies and bars the other day, and thought you might like to see a complete list of what we had for sale.  Here's what came out of my itty bitty kitchen:

  • Pumpkin Cranberry Bread
    Vegan Pumpkin Bread with Walnuts
    Strawberry Bread with Pecans
    Chocolate Sheath Cake
    Root Beer Bundt Cakes
    Outrageous Oreo Brownies
    Outrageous Brownies with Chocolate Chips and Walnuts
    Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
    Caramel Bars
    Texas Pecan Pie Bars
    RazzMaTazz Bars
    Soft Peanut Brittle
    Almond Toffee
    Fudge in Christmas tree and gingerbread man shapes

Here's what K and her sister L did:

  • Banana Bread (with and without nuts)
    Cranberry Orange Bread (with and without almonds)
    Spice Cake
    Chocolate Peppermint Cookies
    Rice Krispie Treats
    German Chocolate Rice Krispie Treats
    Chocolate-Dipped Pretzels
    Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge Crunch
    Santa's Whiskers
    Peanut Butter Cookies
    Sugar Cookies
    Chocolate Chip Cookies

Our coworker SA did some incredible cream cheese pound cake and peppermint bark, as well as crafting our lobby signage that was so crucial in driving people up to our location.

So it was truly a team effort, and we're all just THRILLED with the response we got!  Beyond thrilled!

Here is a photo of our goodies just before the customers arrived.  There were also two other cookie areas out of camera view so this isn't even a complete picture of the massive amount of goodies we started with.  You can see that we had a TON of stuff all packaged and labeled, and even had some backstock stashed in cabinets since it wouldn't fit on our tables!

SPCA Bake Sale Goodies!

SPCA Bake Sale Goodies!

And here is what was left after 8 hours of sales!  That's it!  Are you kidding me?!

This was all that was left!

So, after celebrating a great day that lasted 12 hours from set-up to clean-up, I stumbled home to face the mother of all messes in my kitchen.  These were just the items that had to be hand washed!  When, oh when, will those cats earn their keep and learn to do a dish or two during the day!  ^..^

Mother of all kitchen messes!

Mother of all kitchen messes!

Before I sign off this topic for a while (and start to plan next year's event, God willing), I wanted to share a little of what we've learned about bake sale success during our 2 experiences.  We aren't experts by any means, but we've definitely learned some things!

  • People love chocolate, especially brownies.  Have plenty!  Have more than you think you can sell!
  • People love peanut butter.
  • People like things that are decadent and that they wouldn't make themselves.
  • Lots of people dislike nuts so leave them out of recipes if they're optional.
  • People like BIG items – big slabs of bars, big pound cakes, big cookies.  Our smaller items sold the slowest, even though the recipes were incredible.  The small size just couldn't compete for the attention of people up next to the hefty items, even if there were lots of them in the package.
  • People love rice krispie treats!  Go figure, they aren't an item I especially care for, but I'm in the minority.  They sell like hotcakes.
  • Items in colored treat bags that can't be seen clearly don't move well.
  • Cute packaging sells great though, even if the item can't be seen through it.
  • Putting out samples of an item lights a fire under it's popularity.
  • If you're doing cake or bread, frosting or even a drizzle of glaze will pretty it up and help it sell better.
  • Some items are just too unexciting to sell well.  For example, I thought that good traditional gingerbread would be a great seller at Christmas.  It turned out to be really slow.  It just couldn't compete in a world full of rich brownies!
  • Pray, pray, pray!

So, one last shout out to K, L and SA for their hard work.  You girls worked like crazy women, and it paid off!  Thank you to building management for your fabulous support of this project.  Thank you, of course, to our fellow tenants, friends and family for buying our goodies and contributing online!  And most of all, thank you to God for blessing this event.  We are SO thankful and humbled that You answered our prayers!

Now.  What can I bake this weekend?


Posted under Animals

This post was written by BigSis on December 21, 2008

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SPCA Bake Sale Wrap-Up!

We have one more little topic to wrap up for 2009 just as we fly into 2010…the SPCA Bake Sale results, of course!  The sale was held for one day only on December 14th, and we thankfully sold every crumb we had!  We also had a web site set up for donations from out-of-town folks, or for local friends who just couldn't make the sale.

So here are the results.  Drum roll, please!  The web site donations are $405, and the one-day sale of baked goodies brought in $3618.  That makes our grand total so far $4023!  Woo hoo!!

We are enormously grateful for the support of our friends, family, fellow tenants, our building's management, and an awesome SMU fraternity.  Thank you so much for showing your love to the animals and to the SPCA of Texas in a huge way! We baked our fannies off, but without all of you, it would have been for nothing!

Here are some photos from the sale.  You can get an idea of how much we started with, but what you can't see is that we have boxes and boxes of more goodies under the table!  We sold it ALL!

Cakes and breads all lined up before the sale started at 8 am.

Bars and brownies are ready to be snatched up and gobbled up!

Cookies were all huddled together here.

All the treats were organized in happy little rows here.

Almond Toffee and Soft Peanut Brittle went into these cute little totes.

Cakes and breads were packaged in tall treat bags from PaperMart.

Brownies and other bars got these cute Treat Toppers from Hobby Lobby.

3 kinds of fudge were molded into shapes, and then decorated.

Cinnamon and Peanut Butter Fudge close-up.

Pretzels got a dip in chocolate, and then a swoosh and a drizzle of cuteness.

The cutest gift bags ever were donated by LilSis!

Thanks again to everyone! We can't wait until next year!


Posted under Animals

This post was written by BigSis on December 31, 2009

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SPCA Christmas Bake Sale #3!

This December 13th will be our 4th charity bake sale, and the 3rd one we've done at Christmas for the SPCA of Texas.  Since I stopped eating and using eggs and dairy products this last January, I needed to find some great new recipes for this year's sale.  We've been blessed with great success and happy customers that return year after year, so scrapping all of my old recipes and starting over was a daunting proposition!  I was especially motivated to find some fabulous goodies after a hater told me I'd be disappointed because no one would buy “that vaygan stuff”!

I bought several vegan baking cookbooks and did a lot of online research, and finally swooped into the kitchen to get my hands dirty.  I've been baking up a storm in my lab (aka kitchen) for the last several weeks, trying out new recipes.  The latest test: Oatmeal Dried Cherry Cookies adapted from Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook.

Vegan Oat Cherry Cookie

These cookies had a great flavor, and would have been excellent if I hadn't over-baked them by a couple of minutes.  That's why I test though.  I have a rule that I never make a recipe for the bake sale without taking it for a test drive first.

I'm pretty excited with the successes I've had.  I actually have well over a dozen things to choose from.  These are my favorite options.

  • Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Coconut Cookies adapted from Epicurious
  • Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie with Peanuts and Almond Meal adapted from Cookie Madness

There's much more baking to be done so I'm dashing back to the kitchen for more baking frenzy.  I'll be back next week with photos from the sale, and hopefully a big donation to the SPCA to report!


Posted under Animals

This post was written by BigSis on December 8, 2010

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SPCA Bake Sale 2010 Today!

SPCA Christmas Bake Sale

As I mentioned with great enthusiasm and anticipation last the week, our 3rd Annual Bake Sale for the SPCA of Texas is TODAY, Monday, December 13!  100% of the proceeds go directly to the SPCA.

Last year, our sale raised over $4,000 in one day, and we hope to repeat that success this year.  Here are the details:

Location: Dallas, Texas (If you can come, please email me for the address)

Time: 8 am until 6 pm or sell-out, whichever comes first!

If you can't attend but you'd like to support the SPCA of Texas, you can contribute through this web page:  http://www.spca.org/bakesale

Thanks in advance for your support!  Stay tuned for photos and the scoop on the outcome of the day!


Posted under Animals

This post was written by BigSis on December 12, 2010

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SPCA Christmas Bake Sale 2010: Done!

The 2010 SPCA Christmas Bake Sale is now history!  We held the charity event last Monday, and contributions are still coming in but the total amount raised so far is $3,265.  We're short of our $4,000 goal, but considering all of the obstacles that confronted us this year, we're pretty happy to have raised that amount!  We wanted to beat last year's $4,023 total but we're thankful for what we have.

Our conference room wasn't available this year, so our management company allowed us to use an empty suite on the first floor.  We liked the accessibility of the ground floor space, but the large concrete-floored room presented an ambiance challenge.  We used lots of signs and color, and fabrics on our tables.  The focus was on the goodies available for purchase to benefit the animals anyway, not the interior design, right?

We had a wide selection of cakes, breads, candy, treats, cookies and brownies to choose from.  The biggest change this year was that all 15 items that I baked were vegan, and I was really happy with how they came out.

Here are some photos from our wild and crazy day!

SPCA Bake Sale Cake Bread

Cakes and Breads

SPCA Bake Sale Pound Cake

SisMama's Cream Cheese Pound Cake: DEEEElicious!

SPCA Bake Sale Cookies Brownies

Cookies and Brownies

SPCA Bake Sale Vegan Cookies

Vegan Cookies

SPCA Bake Sale Biscotti

Vegan Cranberry Orange Macadamia Biscotti

SPCA Bake Sale Biscotti Reindeer

Reindeer Bucket O' Biscotti sold out quickly!

SPCA Bake Sale Treats

Treats and more treats

SPCA Bake Sale Santa Treats

Santa's Spiced Pecans surrounded by more goodies!

SPCA Bake Sale Sponsor CityVet

Huge thanks to our first SPCA Bake Sale Sponsor: CityVet!

Thanks to CityVet and to everyone who helped us raise a bunch more money for the SPCA of Texas!  We appreciate you and look forward to next year!


Posted under Animals

This post was written by BigSis on December 19, 2010

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One Week til SPCA Bake Sale!

SPCA-xmas logo-vertical

Our “little baking team that could” has been baking up a storm the last two weekends, and we have just one more week to get everything baked, packaged and organized!

We're trying to raise another $3000 for the SPCA of Texas here in Dallas.  Last year's sale raised $3055 and we really hope we can do better than that for the animals this year.

It seems like an overwhelming task to prepare $3000 worth of baked goodies, and then sell them all in just one day.  We all agree though that this is some of the biggest fun we have all year long!

So far, I have bunches of these things wrapped up in my freezer:

  • Cranberry Pumpkin Bread with Walnuts
  • Vegan Pumpkin Bread with Walnuts
  • Strawberry Bread with Pecans
  • Texas Pecan Pie Bars from the Pastry Queen
  • Texas Pecan Pie Bars with Chocolate and Bourbon from the Pastry Queen
  • Barefoot Contessa's Outrageous Brownies
  • Barefoot Contessa's Outrageous Brownies with Mint Oreos
  • Barefoot Contessa's Outrageous Brownies with Bittersweet Chocolate Chips and Walnuts

SisMama has made a whole slew of awesome pound cakes in lots of flavors, and K & P have made oodles of breads.

Next weekend, we'll be making all of the candies and other treats that we don't want to freeze.  If you're in the Dallas area, email me or leave a comment if you'd like to come visit us at the sale and I'll send you the details.  If you'd like to donate to the SPCA of Texas but you're too far away to visit us, you can use the web site that's been set up for our donations.  It's http://www.spca.org/goto/bakesale.

Meanwhile, wish us well!  The SPCA of Texas – like lots of animal organizations right now – is in serious need of funds in this economy, and we'd really like to help!


Posted under Animals

This post was written by BigSis on December 7, 2009

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SPCA Bake Sale 2009: Check!

The 2009 SPCA Bake Sale is now history.  We started setting up at 6 am, opened the doors at 8 am, and left the building at 6 pm.  It was a long day, but it was incredible fun.

Our goal was to beat last year's donation of $3055.  Our little team started baking 3 or 4 weeks ago, and we pulled out every trick in the hat to try to make our goodies irrestible to buyers. We emailed everyone we know, we sent out press releases, we lined up the most irresistible sample girls you could ever meet, and we talked about nothing but the SPCA and cookies for the last month.  We decorated, packaged and labeled until we were loopy.

How did we do?  I'm too fried to remember how to get pictures off my camera today, and we don't have a final total yet because donations are still coming in online.  I'll just leave you with one little teaser for now.  We are humbled and amazed and incredibly grateful.  How much money do you think that 5 baking girls could raise in one day if their bake sale sold out?  What if God showed up in a big way to answer their prayers?  What could happen?

I'll come back later to tell you.  If I come down off Cloud Nine long enough to type again.


Posted under Animals

This post was written by BigSis on December 15, 2009

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My Kitchen Pre-Bake Sale

We mentioned the other day that I'm organizing a Bake Sale for December 15th (yes, I am truly insane to dream up a project like this at Christmastime). 100% of the proceeds will go to the SPCA here in Dallas, and our goal is to raise $3000. Yep, I said $3000 (I guess I'm insane AND overly-ambitious). Seriously, I'm doing this with two of my awesome co-workers (K and SA) and K's sister L. We love to bake, we love animals, and we know that the SPCA and other animal organizations are in a real financial crunch right now, so it just makes sense to try to help them before the end of the year. The sale will be held in the conference room of the office building we work in (thank you to the building management), and we're extremely excited to do this. We could each make a cash donation to the SPCA, but if we can invest that cash into baking supplies, and leverage it for the SPCA, so much the better!  We believe our goal is doable, and we're praying that God will bless this event!

Having said all of that, what does a girl's kitchen look like before she starts a 9-day baking spree of this magnitude?  Here it is with some of the ingredients queued up ready to be called into service.  This little bitty kitchen has no idea of what is about to happen to it!

Pre-Bake Sale Kitchen

Pre-Bake Sale Kitchen

Closer view of the left...

Closer view of the left...

...and the right

...and the right

Well, now you know.  It started out neat and clean and organized.  Here's one shot of Day One…still pretty neat.

Baking Day One

Baking Day One

I'll post some more pictures mid-spree (it's going to get messy next weekend, and dare I say – ugly) and post-spree! I'd say “wish us luck”, but I don't believe in luck, so pray for us! And if you're in Dallas, email me for the particulars on the sale!

Ladies, start your ovens!


Posted under Animals

This post was written by BigSis on December 8, 2008

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What’s Your Favorite Bake Sale Treat?

SPCA Texas LogoWe're already gearing up for our Third Annual Bake Sale, which will be held on December 14th.  This is the second year that 100% of the proceeds will go to SPCA Texas, and we're beyond excited to get crackin' and bakin'!  We have a lot of work ahead of us: shopping, baking, wrapping, labeling, transporting, and promoting, but we all agree that we have more fun doing this than pretty much anything else all year!

The little-baking-team-that-could this year is me, SisMama, my coworkers K and SAA, and K's sister L.  Our goal for the one-day sale is $3000 again!  Last year, our final total was $3055, so we're hopeful we can exceed the goal again. We're not totally crazy though, so the goal isn't increasing!

To help us reach our goal again for the SPCA, we could really really use your help!  We know what recipes worked for us last year – and which ones didn't move – but we'd love to know what your favorites are.

Pretend that you went to a fund-raising bake sale at Christmas to buy cute packaged homemade gifts to give to your babysitter, hairdresser, postman, Bunco friends, kids' teachers, kids' friends, Secret Santas, etc.  What would you like to find?  Traditional items like gingerbread, pound cake, biscotti and sugar cookies?  Or indulgent items you might not make yourself like almond toffee, fudge, pecan pie bars, and fancy brownies?  Would you be interested in something savory like a spicy snack mix or nut blend?  Or something else altogether?

Maybe you've had some great success yourself with certain items at bake sales.  What works best for you?  Or maybe you have specialties that you think would be an awesome hit at a Christmas bake sale?

If you have ideas, please pass them on to us!  Thanks in advance from us – and all of the animals at the SPCA – for your suggestions!



Posted under Food

This post was written by BigSis on November 8, 2009

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Bake Sale for SPCA Today

Today is the BIG DAY that we've been looking forward to and working toward for weeks now! Today is the BAKE SALE we're holding to benefit the Dallas SPCA, and we're aiming high: $3000!

If you're in the Dallas area, come on by! The sale is Monday, December 15th from 9:30 am until 4 pm.

If you can't come, you can contribute to the SPCA through this special link set up for our event until December 31st.

Donating through this link in December will ensure that your contribution will go towards our team's goal of $3000. Above all, we ask for your prayers for this event; that we would raise a miraculous amount of money for this incredible charity, and that everyone would see that the only explanation for the success was the Hand of God!


Posted under Animals

This post was written by BigSis on December 15, 2008

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