{RECAP} 2013 BOOK TOUR

This post is way way overdue.

I owe you guys pictures from my mARTshmallows book tour.  Although I have already written about the major events and shows I attended as part of my tour, here are the details to the other stops that I missed.

I’m bringing you to San Diego, New York, Miami, Hollywood and Dallas.

mARTshmallows Book tour

Let me start off by saying that I am extremely appreciative of each and every single person who helped me organize my tour, came to see me, helped me spread the word, and supported me with encouragement on my pics and status updates I posted along. You guys all rock!! I am so very thankful to have you in my life. Book tours aren’t all glitz and glamour and can be very scary to take on as a self-publisher. Luckily, our was a total success!

I’d also like to thank my husband, my parents, my mother-in-law, Rocky and Melissa for helping me with the boys. I could not have done it without you!!!!

In 5 months we made 10 out of 12 scheduled appearances — WOOHOO!!!!!!!!!!!!

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My KRAFTown Visit

Can anyone guess what this is?

Chicago Chocolate Show 13 -TheMarshmallowStudio.com1

YES!! It’s KRAFTown :) and it was such an amazing experiences to visit this place.

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{RECAP} INTERNATIONAL BAKING INDUSTRY EXPO 2013

ibie-logo

I was fortunate enough to have attended the International Baking Industry Exposition a couple of days ago. IBIE is North America’s largest, most comprehensive trade event. It’s held every three years at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. It attracts more than 20,000 baking professionals from every segment of the grain-based market from all around the world. I am already counting down the days until the next event in 2016!!

IBIE 13 Recap from TheMarshmallowStudio.com

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{RECAP} CAKE CAMP 2013

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Two years ago we scrapped up our saving and headed to Las Vegas to try our luck at Cake Camp. Fast forward two years and here we were again except this time we lived in Las Vegas and I was teaching too.  I cannot believe how fast time had flown by and how much we have accomplished as a business, a family and a sugar artist in this time.

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THE mARTshmallows BOOK ARRIVAL…


Tiki Draft

Seems like just yesterday my husband and I were just talking about how cool it would be to publish a book and show people the art of marshmallow decorating. It all started has a fun adventure and quickly turned into a serious task. We wanted to make it the coolest, most complete cookbook out there. As self-publishers that meant we had to take an extra dose of determination and motivation…. not to mention, drain our savings account and learn new skills quickly to make it all happen by the deadlines. Deadlines that we set without really knowing what it all entailed and not knowing what road blocks we had ahead of us.

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mARTshmallows BOOK UPDATE!

mARTshmallows Book - Update

This is a long over-due post. I’m sorry it has taken me so long to give you an update with the book progress. As you can imagine, I haven’t had much time for anything since starting this book venture and my work with KRAFT Jet-Puffed marshmallows. Lots and lots and lots has happened since we first decided to write a book which was exactly a year ago.  In this post, not only will I be telling you how the book is coming along but also about our struggles and experiences as self-publishers.  In the past I’ve shared a few photos here and there, mostly on our Instagram page but this is the first post that I’ll actually dig a little deeper into what our road has been like. It’s been a bumpy one….

martshmallows_title

 After receiving many emails and comments on our social pages requesting tutorials and online videos, I began kicking around the idea of possibly writing a book in my mind but never really thought I’d be able to do it. Until one day, I woke up and decided to just do it and see what happened. I began by researching how to submit a manuscript to a publishing company and how author-publisher contracts worked. Let’s just say, it would not have worked for us. Then I researched how to self-publish and that seemed like a lot more work but a much better fit for my control-freak, impatient, perfectionist, independent self that I am. We made the decision to self-publish! To get started – we sat down, laid out what the work scope entitled, we evaluated our skills and resources, and finally drafted a guide of what the book would include and look like. Sounds simple right?!?!

 mARTshmallows Book - Update   mARTshmallows Book - Update

mARTshmallows Book - UpdatemARTshmallows Book - Update

mARTshmallows Book - Update

At this point, we decided to hire a lawyer, a photographer, a stylist, partner up with a few graphic designers (to create something really special for our book readers) and to begin writing the manuscript. On May 15, 2012 we announced we were writing a book. The feedback was unbelievable. I knew we were onto something great! Around the end of June, I asked my sister to come stay with us during her Summer vacation so she could help me watch our two little boys while I made all the marshmallow designs for the book. With her help, I was able to make them in 4 days! Next, I packaged them all together along with other items and traveled to deliver them to our photographer and stylist. On July 18, 2012, we announced the title of the book. So far everything was going according to plan…. but it’s always calm before the storm. In August, my husband received a job offer in Las Vegas, Nevada which meant we would have to move out of San Diego, California. Oh lord, this book did not look like it was going to get done by October 2012 as I had initially planned. We had my son, Aiden’s 3rd birthday party then four weeks after we were packed and moving. As you can imagine, once we got to our new home it was all about unpacking, settling in, getting Aiden in preschool, and transferring addresses, licenses, permits, etc.

mARTshmallows Book - Update

mARTshmallows Book - Update

 

By now it’s mid-October and I’m finally ready to get back into the book. I still had to finish writing 50% of the book and schedule the hands-on instruction and filler photos with the photographer. I contacted my photographer and stylist team to check on the progress but sadly, learned they had been unable to shoot anything yet due to some last minute schedule complications. This took a huge hit on our projected release date. But we’re troopers and this was not going to stop us! We picked up the designs from California and scrambled to look for another photographer closer to us in Las Vegas. My husband then said, stop struggling and let’s just do it ourselves! I was opposed to this at first because I knew it would take us a long time to shoot every photo, it would take away even more time from our boys, and it would indeed push back the release date some more, again. Luckily, Kyle had taken photography classes a while back and is a total tech geek so I was confident he could do it but still nervous as he is no pro published photographer, yet ;) . Well, we sat down again and figured out what equipment (camera, lighting, stands, backdrops, props, etc.) we would need to purchase and how we were going to do it all. I called my mother-in-law to ask if she could PLEASE watch the boys for several weekends so Kyle and I could do the shoots. She is awesome! Her and her sister were a tremendous help and did a great job keeping the boys entertained and happy.

mARTshmallows Book - Update

 

mARTshmallows Book - Update

During the shoots, I had to play the stylist, the model, the light reflector holder, the lunch runner and the author all at once. My poor husband, had to be the photographer, the equipment carrier, the construction man, my psychiatrist, and the book designer all at once too. Mind you, I’m not the most pleasant person to work with when I’m stressed and in business-mode. But we make a great team and there’s no one else I would rather have by my side during this time than him. He had to continue going to work at his regular job during the week and I had to continue my work obligations with The Marshmallow Studio and Jet-Puffed throughout. Anyways, a few days later he showed me the photos on the computer screen and, let me tell you, I was blown away. He surpassed my expectations. The photos can definitely hold up on their own next to any other book’s. So now that the photos were done, I had to hurry up and hire a professional editor and finish writing those last few pages left. On January 29, 2013 I typed the last words and completed my manuscript. I cannot explain to you how awesome that felt. I felt like that day that I finally had my college diploma in my hands. I’m thinking when I actually have the book in my hands it will feel like the first time I held my baby boys in the hospital after delivering them. Sounds like I’m exaggerating but you have no idea how much work and time it has taken us to see this a reality.

mARTshmallows Book - Update   mARTshmallows Book - Update

mARTshmallows Book - Update

mARTshmallows Book - Update

So where is the book now? Well, the manuscript is being edited in New York City by my fabulous editor. My husband is designing the book’s layout. I am researching where are going to have it printed at (USA vs China) and how to promote, sell and present it to retailers across the nation (Michael’s, Barnes & Nobles, Williams & Sonoma, Hobby Lobby, and more). If you have any tips, contacts or ideas… I’m all ears. Please DO tell :) So far it looks like we’ll be selling it on Amazon and direct through our website to start. Once the book as been edited and designed, I’ll have to get it reviewed by a few persons that I admire so much, then we’ll have to get marketing materials designed, file ISBN numbers, copyright book, start taking pre-orders, send it off to print, and finally ship them off to your hands. Again, sounds straight forward but I’m still hesitant to announce a pre-order or release date because of what we’ve been through and other things that might be out of our control. As the stars begin to align and the light at the end of the tunnel begins to shine, I’ll be sure to announce these dates and write another update.

 

mARTshmallows Book - Update

Lastly, I’d like to thank you all for being so patient and understanding with me. This book adventure as been one interesting roller coaster but I know it’s all going to be totally worth at the end. I’m always happy to hear you guys are excited for it and can’t wait to have your copy. As a self-publisher, I don’t have a big fancy budget for marketing nor do I have celebrity friends to help promote my book so I’m hoping you can all help me spread the word about my book and tell all your friends about it. It would really really really mean the world to me!! Love you guys :) YOU are all the BEST!! 

 

Sweetly Yours, 

Alejandra Morin

mARTshmallows Book - Update

 

 

OVERSTOCK MARSHMALLOWS FLASH-GIVEAWAY!!

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Overstock mm Giveaway

Amigos…. oops, I did it again :) I have way way too many marshmallows in my little Studio and need to make some room.

 Soooo in order to fix this wonderful problem, I thought I’d do a GIVEAWAY… yeay!!

(This is something totally new that I’ve never tried before. I’m curious to know how it will go…. I’m hoping its a successful giveaway so I can have these more often with lots more marshmallows next time.  Feel free to drop me an email or comment on my FB wall letting me know what you thought of the giveaway ;) Thanks!)

Here are all 122 Jet-Puffed marshmallows bags that are up for grabs:

Overstock mm Giveaway Selection

Here are a few ideas on what you can make or do with your marshmallows:

  • Snack on them :)
  • Rice Krispies treats
  • Marshmallow fondant
  • Pops
  • Decorate cakes and cupcakes
  • Dip them in chocolate
  • S’mores
  • Top your coffee or hot cocoa
  • Bake them in cookies
  • Kid’s crafts
  • and much more…

Here’s how to enter:

  • Leave a comment with what and how many marshmallows you’d like to have (MAX. 5 BAGS PER PERSON)
  • Tell me what you’ll be doing or making with them
  • “LIKE” the Facebook pages below and “FOLLOW” us on Instagram & Pinterest -

Instagram TMS button    Pinterest TMS button

Here’s how we’re going to do this:

  • Winners will be chosen on a first come first served basis. We only have a limited amount of marshmallows of each kind so enter your request NOW. Limit 5 bags per person.
  • You can see inventory updates >>>> BELLOW <<<<

RULES: 

Giveaway open to US residents only. Entries accepted from 2/2/13 6:00AM PST to 8:00PM PST. Entry is conditioned upon “Liking” the Facebook pages (the like button above) AND “Following” our Instagram and Pinterest profiles! Winners will receive marshmallow bags at NO COST to them but they are responsible for shipping costs. I will email a PAYPAL invoice to be paid within 2 hours or else item will go back in the giveaway inventory. Note: Shipping costs vary depending on recipient’s address and weight of package. Packages will be shipped on Monday, 2/4/13 via USPS Priority Mail. PLEASE NOTE: Some marshmallows might be stuck together or be shortly past their “Best by” date. Marshmallows do not expire; therefore, they are still perfectly fine to consume afterwards.

This giveaway is in no way affiliated with Facebook. Facebook will be completely released by each entrant.

 

This giveaway is sponsored by The Marshmallow Studio

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GINGERBREAD-MARSHMALLOW VILLAGE

Christmas is my favorite holiday for so many reasons… I get to wear my cozy gear, go play in the snow, decorate the house, celebrate with family and friends, bake goodies, experience magical moments with my boys, and so much more.  As you can already imagine, I also love all the seasonal marshmallows that are available at this time of year.

Another thing that makes Christmas so fun for me is Gingerbread. Yes, gingerbread cookies, houses, lattes, and flavorings. As you may remember, last year I made a Gingerbread-Marshmallow North Pole Cabin for a contest Candy.com was having and I actually WON! This year, I wanted to do another gingerbread-marshmallow house but do it a little different. I decided to make a whole village!!

Keep reading for more photos and details….

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EPIC FAIL & SURPRISING RECOVERY!

This is a funny post… I’d love to sit here and tell you that all my ideas come out great and I never have total disasters but that would would be one big fat lie! There are times when I’m bored or feel overly creative and get these coo coo random marshmallow ideas. Sometimes they are cool and sometimes they leave me thinking “OMG, what the heck was I thinking”. The cool stuff is what makes it to the blog, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, on and on. Then the not-so-proud of stuff gets stashed somewhere in The Studio hidden from the public eye. It’s true! 

Well, I decided it was time to share with you one of my all-time epic fail projects = Hot Chocolate sticks

<<< This is the pretty one…. see below for the full story >>>

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MARSHMALLOW FINDS AT DISNEYLAND

 

Disneyland truly is the happiest place on Earth!!

Now that our baby boys are a little older we wanted to take them to Disneyland. Oh boy, did we have a blast!!

Although it was our little vacation, I couldn’t help to have my “marshmallow radar” on. I was checking out all the gift and sweets shoppes for any sort of unique marshmallows. Unfortunately, the marshmallow trend hasn’t hit Disneyland yet so I didn’t find much.

Read on to see my finds…

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IT’S A MARSHMALLOW WONDERLAND

Would you like to take a little peek at what kind of fun we have at The Marshmallow Studio?

(Above: Our logo made out of marshmallows)

We create, we have fun, we play, we taste and we take lots of photos here LOL

Just a wall of our meticulously organized Studio… (more…)