I grew up in Menlo Park, which is right next door to Palo Alto, the home of Stanford University.  Living so close to a college town made local traffic on game days little short of miserable.  The joke in the family had always been that to spite Stanford, one of us (either my sister or myself) was “expected” to attend Cal, Stanford’s rival.  
In reality, our choice to attend college would have been fully supported no matter where we decided to go, but the prophesy finally fulfilled itself when my sister received her acceptance letter to UC Berkeley.  Sorry, Stanford…  Now it’s personal;)
So *why* did I make a Stanford birthday cake?  Because my best childhood friend and her husband are now completing their graduate studies there.  I was never really able to get into football anyways, so I suppose it’s just as well that I don’t root for anybody on game day.  Ok, Stanford…  You’re off the hook for now.
The cake was commissioned by my friend Eliza, for her husband Justin, and their friend, Trent on their 30th birthdays.

10″ Chocolate cake with vanilla buttercream.

Gumpaste Stanford Tree.

Tree Victory Dance.

Stanford campus is really quite beautiful.  I’m suddenly compelled to go shutterbugging in the foothills.