Happy Mother’s Day!  I haven’t gone to sleep yet, so it still counts.  It’s been a while since a crazy catch-up post and there’s a lotta love here. The 2nd Avenue Deli spells it out in salmon where I took my Mom last year and she wanted to go back today, so love also means pastrami sandwiches and potato pancakes.

I also put some love into the 192 (yep, that’s 16-dozen) strawberry lemonade cupcakes I made for the Vicious & Virtuous 2nd Annual Bake-Off Beat-Down to benefit Autism Speaks organized by CupcakeHussy.

This recipe by Annie’s Eats was popular when I made 48 and this time the judges from SweeteryNYC, Paper Magazine and Dessert Buzz NYC awarded them “best unusual ingredient” for the edible flowers and….

Best in Show!  And I was very happy with my attire for the event, a special apron by Jessie Steele, so freakin’ cute.

There were also edible flowers at a dinner for Cartier by Chef Sam Talbot: they topped yummy, little lemon soufflés.

I loved the day I had with wedding planner Kate Sullivan, who I’ve known since kindergarten and new friends event planner Tammy Golson and photographer Angela Gaspar: girly, event chat with jap chae, okonomiyaki, ramen and bibimbap.  Big thanks to Kerry from handmade Quade for bringing us together, can’t wait for our next outing!

We also trekked out to The Brooklyn Lyceum’s spring craft market and to the Smith Street Paper Source: “paper heaven!” sighed Kate.

I put my purchases to use for a congratulatory card

which went with a Lemon Infused Lemon Glazed Lemon Cake from Jon at Victory or Death in the Kitchen.  I added yet more strawberries since I’m on that kick these days and there was a yummy lemon syrup, which you brush on after baking and before pouring on the lemon glaze.

The Hester Street Fair opened yesterday and I met Angela and wore shorts for the first time this year.  The weather was so gorgeous I just wanted to stay outside all day.  Awesome coffee from Wonder City Coffee & Donut Bar.  I somehow resisted their donut holes with caramel sauce, but that will need to be remedied soon.

We saw adorable, little drawstring bags with felt appliqué by The Honey Pie Tree.

and had some spinach & ricotta and saffron & mozzarella arancini from Arancini Brothers…mmm…yes, more fried food in my life…bliss.

Sometime I have to go here when I’m on my way home so I can carefully buy a terrarium from Casa Helecho because aside from being beautiful I think echivaria and cacti are the only things I can keep alive, Mila excepted.

We snagged rose petal donuts at Doughnut Plant — they’re only made for Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day — wow, even MORE edible flowers!

And it was a great day just for lying around in the park.

But back to Mother’s Day: how did I forget to take pictures of the gifts I picked up at the Spring Handmade Cavalcade from hycCreative and Wish By Felicity?  Too eager to get wrapping I guess.  Well, here’s a pic from Felicity of a necklace similar to the one I bought my Mom, whose favorite color is blue.

Another perfect spring day: we went trolling through The Antiques Garage on 25th Street

and yes, over to the 2nd NYC Doughnut Plant location (hehe….more donuts in my life…)  This one is much bigger than the Lower East Side location, but not as large as the one I visited in the Myeongdong region of Seoul, South Korea.  Love these pillows on the wall on 23rd Street though.

Over in Madison Square Park I saw something that stopped me in my tracks: “Echo” by Jaume Plensa.

The artist says “Many times we talk and talk, but we are not sure if we are talking with our own words or repeating just messages that are in the air. My intention is to offer something so beautiful that people have an immediate reaction, so that they think, ‘What’s happening?’ And then maybe they can listen a little bit to themselves.”

This was my reaction to the piece exactly and I listened to myself quietly for a moment, then the sounds of the city came back and I looked around me at what’s really important.  Love you, Mom, Dad & Emily.