Our church is preparing to host Family Promise soon. Family Promise is an organization aimed at getting homeless families the help that they need to find and keep permanent housing. Have you heard the statistics that most people are 2-3 paychecks away from being homeless? Think about your bills and how much or little you have left at the end of the month and it is a scary thought. Even scarier is that most shelters are seeing larger numbers of families (most with children) needing housing. Furthermore, most shelters don't take families. Women and children go to one shelter while men go to another. Family Promise is a network of churches who agree to house a set number of families for one week. They provide the organization and transportation and we provide meals, supervision, and clean sheets. It is a really great program and my favorite thing is it ends up being really FUN! Everyone is hanging out at the church, eating meals and watching TV, playing with kids. These are really nice families and fun to get to know.
It does take a lot of help to pull off and so we are preparing for our upcoming Family Promise week with a kick off Pajama Party at church tonight. I volunteered to make pajama party themed cupcakes (surprise, surprise!) and was inspired by these images found online. The idea and the above image appear in the book Hello Cupcake, but I also found step by step directions here.
I have also seen this idea applied to an entire sheet cake, often just using Twinkies as the people, like this image from Sugarcraft. Sadly I had more ambition than time and scaled back my plans from homemade cupcakes to ones from a mix. Then at about 8pm LAST NIGHT (when I finally was able to go shopping for supplies) I scaled all the way down to pre-packaged Zinger snack cakes. Oh well, I still got to do the fun decorating (with store bought icing!)
Here are my Zinger people in progress! Those are miniature Nilla Wafers for the faces. I used icing for the body (the real directions used marshmallows and even jelly beans for feet). The directions also called for airheads candy for the sheets, but my Walmart didn't have those so I used Fruit Roll-ups. Have you tried unwrapping one of those things lately? They must be made by the same folks who make "child proof" medicine bottles that kids can open but adults can not! Sticky stuff and apparently fruit roll ups are advertising on the Roll-ups now (my box was about providing laptops to kids in Africa, so they had printed African animals on them. Sorry, I am a little cranky over all the sleep I lost to peeling and trimming those roll ups. Plan ahead. Get the airheads!
So here are the finished products. I had a lot of fun with trying to do different hairstyles on them all. Some even have Teddy Graham teddy bears tucked in with them. Hopefully our Family Promise guests will soon sleep as soundly in homes of their own!