With the year we’re having, it’s safe to say that a lot of us are expecting 2021 to be far better. However, even if some of us are losing faith in humanity, things aren’t as grim in 2020 as we think. People from all over the world are sharing the times that the results they got exceeded expectations and posting them on the ‘Expectation Vs. Reality’ subreddit.

Scroll down for a wholesome collection that has no place for cynicism and where reality is better (or at least as good) as what’s advertised. Remember to upvote your fave pics, Pandas. When you’re done scrolling through this list and upvoting your fave pics, check out Bored Panda’s previous post about cake fails from the ‘Expectation Vs. Reality’ subreddit.

Bored Panda reached out to Reddit user Zarishka, whose photos of the Doctor Who cupcakes she ordered went viral on the subreddit. According to the redditor, the cupcakes were baked by Alena who lives in Nur-Sultan, in Kazakhstan. “She bakes cupcakes, cakes and cake pops! And can decorate them in any theme the customer wants. Recently she’s been making really cool Halloween themed cupcakes and pops.” Scroll down for the rest of our delicious interview with Zarishka.

#1

Dr. Who Cupcakes. Sent An Independent Baker The First Pic Not Hoping For Much (It Was A Short Notice), Nearly Cried With Joy When Got My Order

Dr. Who Cupcakes. Sent An Independent Baker The First Pic Not Hoping For Much (It Was A Short Notice), Nearly Cried With Joy When Got My Order

zarishka Report

Thorsten M. Weisner
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

He must be a big fan! Clever Boy!

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#2

Otterly Impressive Birthday Cake From My Mom

Otterly Impressive Birthday Cake From My Mom

mamabear034 Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

That is such a lovely cake. Your mom is a pro.

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#3

When Your 3-Year-Old Asks For A Rainbow Dinosaur Donut Party You Comply. I Drew The Design And Had It Made By A Local Baker

When Your 3-Year-Old Asks For A Rainbow Dinosaur Donut Party You Comply. I Drew The Design And Had It Made By A Local Baker

thepantyprincessx Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

Alright, folks...those are mad decorating skills.

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According to redditor Zarishka, the Doctor Who cupcakes that exceeded their expectations were really good. “Chocolate cupcakes with salt caramel filling and cheese cream on top. Sweet, salty, and creamy at the same time!” That sounds like heaven to us!

“The cupcakes were for my best friend’s bachelorette party. Well, just out of lockdown style bachelorette party, a picnic for three people counting the bride in a local park. She wanted the whole wedding to be in the Doctor Who style, however, because of the pandemic all the wedding plans fell through, and we didn’t even think we’d be able to do the bachelorette party,” Zarishka said.

#4

My Wife And I Were Worried Our Daughter Would Have A Hard Time Making Friends In Kindergarten Because Of The Wheelchair. Turns Out I Have A Different Problem On My Hands

My Wife And I Were Worried Our Daughter Would Have A Hard Time Making Friends In Kindergarten Because Of The Wheelchair. Turns Out I Have A Different Problem On My Hands

robinson217 Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

Your daughter has a posse of bodyguards.

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#5

Commissioned Piece Of My Sweet, Late Persephone. The Artist Surpassed Any And All Expectations

Commissioned Piece Of My Sweet, Late Persephone. The Artist Surpassed Any And All Expectations

queso4lyfe Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

Persephone was a gorgeous kitty, and the rendition is beautiful. I like the addition of the pomegranate.

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#6

My Daughter Begged Me To Show Her A Planet Through Her Toy Telescope. Expected Failure, But Found Jupiter And All 4 Moons. Mindblown

My Daughter Begged Me To Show Her A Planet Through Her Toy Telescope. Expected Failure, But Found Jupiter And All 4 Moons. Mindblown

yogiscott Report

Daniel (ShadowDrakken)
Community Member
1 month ago

Woot! And a new future scientist is born.

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“But then the situation seemed to become more stable in our city, and the lockdown was lifted, so we decided to have a small party for the three of us, and I immediately ordered the cupcakes with very short notice. The baker didn’t even know about the series, so I didn’t expect to get these amazing cupcakes at all. My friend was super happy with them! I love Doctor Who, however, I can’t say that I’m as big of a fan as she is,” the redditor told Bored Panda.

She added that she doesn’t think that the photos do the cupcakes justice. “They also had edible glitter on them, star-shaped candy, and silvery candy of various sizes. Very pretty!”

#7

I Pointed My Camera Straight Up And Left The Shutter Running For An Hour To See What Would Happen. Didn't Expect A Flowing River Of Stars

I Pointed My Camera Straight Up And Left The Shutter Running For An Hour To See What Would Happen. Didn't Expect A Flowing River Of Stars

This was taken at Ice House reservoir in Pollock Pines, CA last night. I head out to dark skies on occasion to do astrophotography, but last night I forgot a tracker to compensate for the earth's motion, so I took some experimental shots without it. Turned out much better than I expected. Star trail shots are challenging to compose, so I got pretty lucky with the way they seemed to flow through the trees.

ajamesmccarthy Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

This is stunning!

Cliff Newman
Community Member
1 month ago

"didnt expect?" This is click bait. Yes, its a great picture. but its HIGHLY technical. you have very very clear expectations when you do this.

Janine B.
Community Member
1 month ago

True. It isn't just letting the shutter running. Besides you need an absolutely professional camera to have a shutter opening that long.

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Banjo Peppers
Community Member
1 month ago

The trees kind of look like ocean sponges.

yes.
Community Member
1 month ago

.....Van Gogh???

Brenda Savage
Community Member
1 month ago

WOW!

Karen Lyon
Community Member
1 month ago

I used to live in Pollock Pines. One of my favorite things at night was to stare up at all the stars. This takes that to a different level.

Marilyn Slater
Community Member
1 month ago

Wow!

CharliAnn Olney
Community Member
1 month ago

Astounding!!

Lisa Tetlow
Community Member
1 month ago

Very cool!!

Lisa Chambers
Community Member
1 month ago

Whoa.

Christine Temple
Community Member
1 month ago

Mind blown.

Vibeke Müller
Community Member
1 month ago

So so beautyful

Eunice Robertson
Community Member
1 month ago

abstract art

Susan Mercurio
Community Member
1 month ago

Van Gogh with a camera

Mariette Estabrook
Community Member
1 month ago

I’m speechless!

Pat Wooster
Community Member
1 month ago

Amazing!

Sue Sanders
Community Member
1 month ago

The Universe is overflowing with surprises for the little recycled beings on a dot in the Cosmos.

William Mahoney
Community Member
1 month ago

Slipping, slipping slipping into the future.

[BOT] Windbound
Community Member
1 month ago

I am like flabbergasted right now

Catherine Brady
Community Member
1 month ago

Amazing!

Sue Harris
Community Member
1 month ago

That is an incredible picture.

Anthony Henry
Community Member
1 month ago

Wow! Just Wow!

Oorvi Chandra
Community Member
1 month ago

Never knew a photo could look so good!

F. H.
Community Member
1 month ago

With a lot of experience and decent equipment. A picture like this doesn't just happen, as it is claimed here.

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Otto Nilo
Community Member
1 month ago

It is like meteor showers

Azure Adams
Community Member
1 month ago

Love that area

Dawn K
Community Member
1 month ago

Wow! Amazing.

Linda HS
Community Member
1 month ago

I am wowed....🥰

Elaine Mattingly
Community Member
1 month ago

Plain and simple. I's amazing, I enjoyed it. Thank you.

Hannah Marshall
Community Member
1 month ago

How does one "leave the shutter running" on a camera?

Erik Lawrence
Community Member
1 month ago

looks like starlink made someone happy instead of angry this time

William Mahoney
Community Member
1 month ago

Wow ! Should be shared with your social person .

Steve Cruz
Community Member
1 month ago

"The world keeps on spinning [spinning spinning] into my future." —Steve Miller Band, "Fly Like An Eagle"

Tree
Community Member
1 month ago

Lol, what did you think was going to happen when you left the shutter on for a whole hour? You'd need a really professional camera to do that, that doesn't 'accidentally' happen. My camera goes up to 15 seconds max.

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#8

Ordered The Blanket From A Sketchy Seeming Website. They Nailed It

Ordered The Blanket From A Sketchy Seeming Website. They Nailed It

ezfriedchiken Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

Congratulations! What perfect likenesses of the dogs.

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#9

First Time Doing A Photo Restoration Turned Out Better Than Expected (12 Hours Of Work)

First Time Doing A Photo Restoration Turned Out Better Than Expected (12 Hours Of Work)

aberempel Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

Nice! It looks great.

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The ‘Expectation Vs. Reality’ community on Reddit has 710k members and they’ve got pretty much everything to do with (yup, you guessed it) expectations: from roaring successes to facepalm-worthy fails.

One thing that’s pretty much consistent about people is just how bad most of us are at predicting how we will feel in different situations. Generally, we tend to expect too much and then get disappointed when reality slaps us in the face like an angry otter with a wet fish.

Even though we yearn for success and want to avoid failure, research has shown us that we greatly overestimate how much happier we’ll be when rich, famous, in the perfect relationships, and working our dream jobs.

#10

My Wife Asked What Kind Of Cake She Should Make. I Told Her That, Honestly, I've Always Wanted To Try Peach's Thank-You Cake From The End Of Super Mario 64

My Wife Asked What Kind Of Cake She Should Make. I Told Her That, Honestly, I've Always Wanted To Try Peach's Thank-You Cake From The End Of Super Mario 64

alandenton Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

Aww, this is truly lovely.

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#11

Opened The Box To Assemble A New Office Desk & Expected A Big Headache. Was Pleasantly Surprised

Opened The Box To Assemble A New Office Desk & Expected A Big Headache. Was Pleasantly Surprised

2_black_cats Report

Bathsheba
Community Member
1 month ago

Genius.

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#12

Client's Sketch For Pendant vs. Finished Pendant. Expectations Surpassed

Client's Sketch For Pendant vs. Finished Pendant. Expectations Surpassed

brokenfap Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

The pendant is very well executed.

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Sure, we get a (massive) boost when we win the lottery, get married, or get that promotion we’ve been angling for these past few years. But. But! That joy doesn’t last long. Soon enough, we’re back at our ‘standard’ happiness levels, wondering what goals we should pursue next. We’re very adaptable and that’s both a blessing and a curse.

Instead of focusing on how ‘perfect’ life will be if only X, Y, and Z happened, you should appreciate the things around you. Don’t take things for granted. Start a gratitude journal. Let the people in your life know what they mean to you. Sappy? Sure.

But gratitude will make you much happier. And this happiness is within your reach. So hope for the best, prepare for the worst, don’t expect much, but bask in the glow when the results accidentally exceed your expectations.

#13

I Took A Picture Through My Sunglasses At The Beach With My Phone. It Turned Out Better Than I Expected

I Took A Picture Through My Sunglasses At The Beach With My Phone. It Turned Out Better Than I Expected

Captain__CheeseBurg Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

I gotta try this. Really nice effect.

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#14

I Think It Turned Out Pretty Well

I Think It Turned Out Pretty Well

brigie3594 Report

Lassie
Community Member
1 month ago

The little towels!

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#15

Pic Given To Local Baker On The Left. Actual Hungry Unicorn Cake I Received On The Right. I Like My Cake Better

Pic Given To Local Baker On The Left. Actual Hungry Unicorn Cake I Received On The Right. I Like My Cake Better

VenomousUnicorn Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

Your unicorn is cuter.

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#16

My Friend's Wife Wanted Us Groomsmen To Do A Pic Similar To The Bridesmaids Poster. I'd Say It Came Out Better Than I Expected

My Friend's Wife Wanted Us Groomsmen To Do A Pic Similar To The Bridesmaids Poster. I'd Say It Came Out Better Than I Expected

fupasaursrex Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

A moment to treasure forever. Something to show the grandkids someday. We were wild and crazy guys.

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#17

The Way We Advertise Our Jack-O-Lantern Pizzas vs. The Way I Like To Make Them For Customers

The Way We Advertise Our Jack-O-Lantern Pizzas vs. The Way I Like To Make Them For Customers

ArcusArtifex Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

The 2nd pizza definitely has a more Halloween look about it.

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#18

Made A Unicorn Cake For My Mom's Birthday. Considering How Inexperienced I Am With Baking, I Thought It Turned Out Pretty Good

Made A Unicorn Cake For My Mom's Birthday. Considering How Inexperienced I Am With Baking, I Thought It Turned Out Pretty Good

nightmare_vision Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

It turned out excellent.

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#19

Reality vs. Better Reality

Reality vs. Better Reality

sierraalexiss_ Report

Láďa Durchánek
Community Member
1 month ago

These are some serious mind reading skills!

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#20

That’s Hot

That’s Hot

Grand_Area Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

I've never seen Bueno ice cream cones. I'd love to try one.

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#21

Shined My Girlfriend’s Favorite Pair Of Boots And They Turned Out Better Than Expected

Shined My Girlfriend’s Favorite Pair Of Boots And They Turned Out Better Than Expected

MurrDeHurr Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

You're a very thoughtful SO.

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#22

Christmas Gift From My Teens Has Proven More Useful Than Expected

Christmas Gift From My Teens Has Proven More Useful Than Expected

Beththemagicalpony Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

I know the feeling. 2020, folks.

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#23

Looks Way Better Than The Box

Looks Way Better Than The Box

t3slaract Report

Wanna-be Vegetarian
Community Member
1 month ago

I have these! I ordered 2 but didn't realize they come in pairs. Ended up using all 4 of them all over the house because they're so cute!

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#24

My Mom Made An Elsa Cake

My Mom Made An Elsa Cake

hellogoodhigh Report

Eva the Egg
Community Member
1 month ago

Beautiful! I like her cake better

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#25

I Ran Out Of Filament During A Print, And As A Royals Fan I Decided To Make The Best Of A Bad Situation. Result Is Even Better Than Expected

I Ran Out Of Filament During A Print, And As A Royals Fan I Decided To Make The Best Of A Bad Situation. Result Is Even Better Than Expected

welshhomebrew Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

Amazing what 3D printers can do.

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#26

Ordered From Grocery Store. Cupcake 'Cake' For My Daughter's Birthday. Pleasantly Surprised

Ordered From Grocery Store. Cupcake 'Cake' For My Daughter's Birthday. Pleasantly Surprised

mydogisanastronaut Report

Lassie
Community Member
1 month ago

They did the colors in the right order 😊

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#27

My Wife's McDonald's Cone In The Drive Through Last Night

My Wife's McDonald's Cone In The Drive Through Last Night

Eric_SS Report

itz kimora
Community Member
1 month ago

I Stan that mcdonalds worker 😌

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#28

My Wife Loved The Cake Most Ardently

My Wife Loved The Cake Most Ardently

angrycanuck Report

Tara Brooks
Community Member
1 month ago

It’s stunning. I hope you’re filled with pride...

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#29

My Wife Did A Damn Fine Job On These Cupcakes. Delicious Too

My Wife Did A Damn Fine Job On These Cupcakes. Delicious Too

bike_rack Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

Too cute to eat.

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#30

Friend Faceswapped With A Wendy's Cup. Results Better Than Expected

Friend Faceswapped With A Wendy's Cup. Results Better Than Expected

Tnpdynomite Report

Ekate
Community Member
1 month ago

Never noticed before, the Wendy's neckline looks like it says "mom" :)

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#31

Pic I Sent Cookie Maker, And What I Got. 100% Impressed And Would Order From Her Again. Bonus: Cookies Tasted Great

Pic I Sent Cookie Maker, And What I Got. 100% Impressed And Would Order From Her Again. Bonus: Cookies Tasted Great

ICvsShipt Report

Rabbit Carrot
Community Member
1 month ago

Sticky sticky stick stick.

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#32

Pretty Happy With How This Turned Out

Pretty Happy With How This Turned Out

CometDebris Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

This looks like such a fun cake. Job well done.

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#33

I Went To 5 Guys Last Night When They Were Closing, They Asked If I Wanted Extra Bacon Cause They Were Going To Throw It Out. I Didn't Expect This

I Went To 5 Guys Last Night When They Were Closing, They Asked If I Wanted Extra Bacon Cause They Were Going To Throw It Out. I Didn't Expect This

BossMcBossington Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

I'll keep that in mind: always go at closing time. That's a lot of BLT's.

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#34

For My Son's B-Day Pizza Party, We Told Him We Could Only Afford 1 Pizza. Expectations Exceeded

For My Son's B-Day Pizza Party, We Told Him We Could Only Afford 1 Pizza. Expectations Exceeded

trchili Report

Malakai
Community Member
1 month ago

His face on the right! You can just hear the excitement ❤

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#35

Dyed Easter Eggs Today When I Messed Up On One. Turns Out It Kinda Looks Like The Universe

Dyed Easter Eggs Today When I Messed Up On One. Turns Out It Kinda Looks Like The Universe

chrisevslee Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

This egg is the most interesting of all.

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#36

Cat Bed

Cat Bed

annaplantain Report

Rissie
Community Member
1 month ago

It's high, sturdy and resembles a round cardboard box. Good.

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#37

Dad’s Cookies Turned Out Just Like The Picture. Chocolate Crinkle Cookies From America’s Test Kitchen

Dad’s Cookies Turned Out Just Like The Picture. Chocolate Crinkle Cookies From America’s Test Kitchen

ag2575 Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

Nailed it!

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#38

My Daughter's Birthday Cake From Last Year

My Daughter's Birthday Cake From Last Year

Awnya Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

Erin must be a Bored Panda.

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#39

My Girlfriend's And Mine First Attempt At Making A Cake From Scratch. Sketch vs. The The Final Product

My Girlfriend's And Mine First Attempt At Making A Cake From Scratch. Sketch vs. The The Final Product

Fwanko Report

EA
Community Member
1 month ago

This reminds me of the dress Cinderella wears for the ball, which all the animals help her make :)

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#40

1st Time Making A Layered Cake. Expectation On Left, Reality On Right

1st Time Making A Layered Cake. Expectation On Left, Reality On Right

engraz Report

EA
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

Wow, the real one is better. Beautiful :) this would not look out of place at a wedding!

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#41

I Wasn’t Actually Expecting That

I Wasn’t Actually Expecting That

vumette Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

LOL That's cute.

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#42

It's My Son's Birthday Today, And He Wanted A Fire-Truck Cake. It Came Out Better Than Expected

It's My Son's Birthday Today, And He Wanted A Fire-Truck Cake. It Came Out Better Than Expected

ra66itz Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

Way cuter than the demo.

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#43

This Chipwich

This Chipwich

ItzGonnaBeMei Report

itz kimora
Community Member
1 month ago

WOW. This is amazing 🙌

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#44

From Filter To Reality. Exceeded Expectations

From Filter To Reality. Exceeded Expectations

prjrwifey18 Report

ML
Community Member
1 month ago

Nice. Sometimes thing turn out better than hoped.

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#45

My Interpretation vs. My Artist's Interpretation

My Interpretation vs. My Artist's Interpretation

Zlatehagoat Report

narmadha weerasinghe
Community Member
1 month ago

Codamas and forest spirit

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#46

In Japan, One Should Expect To Get What One Expects

In Japan, One Should Expect To Get What One Expects

DoktorVonKvantum Report

itz kimora
Community Member
1 month ago

This is like the opposite of western food commercials

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#47

I'm Seriously Impressed By This Frozen Pizza

I'm Seriously Impressed By This Frozen Pizza

Odinlarsen Report

pandamonium.
Community Member
1 month ago

you almost can't tell the difference!

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#48

My First Attempt At Cake Decorating. Nailed It

My First Attempt At Cake Decorating. Nailed It

Starrberry27 Report

Kathryn Baylis
Community Member
1 month ago

I like your edible flowers better.

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#49

Pleasantly Surprised

Pleasantly Surprised

VotreColoc Report

pandamonium.
Community Member
1 month ago

they weren't kidding...

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#50

American Cherry Pie Frapuccino In Japan

American Cherry Pie Frapuccino In Japan

StePK Report

pandamonium.
Community Member
1 month ago

when the "american" part in Japan is better than any "american" part in America

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Note: this post originally had 91 images. It’s been shortened to the top 50 images based on user votes.