Living, Loving, Healing, Hoping Day 2 and Cake for Breakfast

Today we had cake for breakfast. It wasn’t the first time, and it’s not going to be the last. A couple weeks ago I had to buy some buttermilk because I was craving this lemon blueberry cake that is so delicious. We don’t use much buttermilk here, as I assume most don’t, and because I was partially raised by a Grannie who lived through the Great Depression, I honor the waste not, want not mindset. Therefore, I needed another reason to use the buttermilk. I announced that I was going to make a chocolate cake. “Two cakes in one week, mom?” My little conscientious child wanted to know. She was right, two cakes in one week was possibly excessive, so I put it off.  A couple of days ago, I noticed that the buttermilk had expired. But does buttermilk expire? How does sour milk sour? I threw caution to the wind and I made a Texas chocolate sheet cake with it. Lord a mercy! It was so good. It had this moist chocolate cake and this fudgy icing which so reminded me of my mama and how she would make us something she called Spoon fudge when I was a kid.

Spoon fudge is basically fudge made on the stove, brought to a boil, then poured into cereal bowls and put in the freezer to cool. You don’t freeze them completely, but instead just let them cool. Everyone has their own cereal bowl of fudge. You pile up on the couch and dig your spoon in and pull it out in a long, glorious tail of delicious chocolate, wrap it around your spoon, and shove it in your mouth. It’s okay if some thin trails hang off the spoon and drip down your chin. That just enhances the experience. Of course, you’re not supposed to eat the entire bowl in one setting, it’s so rich you can barely handle it, so back in the freezer it goes until maybe 10 minutes later when you realize how decadent that was and go for more. This is repeated throughout the day, until your bowl is scraped clean. If your siblings have any left in their bowl, you might swipe a spoonful of theirs when they aren’t looking. This is a great childhood memory of mine, and the icing on the sheet cake brought all of that back to me.

I digress. But I couldn’t leave you wondering about spoon fudge. Back to my cake. When a family of three has a whole Texas chocolate sheet cake to eat, do you know how much cake one needs to consume in order to honor the waste not, want not mindset? I’ll tell you. Exactly a third of it! Which is a lot of cake. It is made in a rimmed baking sheet, for crying out loud. My husband did help us out by taking some to work, but we still had an entire half a sheet left.

At the time that I made the lemon berry cake, I decided to have a slice one morning with my coffee. Delicious right? Lemon berry cake and coffee. My little EK was horrified that I was eating cake for breakfast. What is the deal with this? Cake is basically a sliced muffin.  I was eating a lemon berry muffin for breakfast, and my child was horrified. I don’t know who is teaching her these things.
“I can’t believe you’re eating cake for breakfast.”
I mean who is the parent here?
“Oh EK, you’re such a square, ” I said.
She stared at me, her mind working over-time, “What does that mean?”
Realizing I had possibly just insulted her, I quickly covered it up. “It doesn’t mean anything bad. It just means you like to follow the rules. You do the right thing. It’s good to be square.” She cataloged this. I watched as she filed it away to be used later.

Yesterday, when I saw there was a half sheet of chocolate cake left, I sliced off a piece to have with my coffee.
“Oh mom, you are so NOT a square,” my kid (who has self-imposed screen times, not dictated by her parents) informed me matter-of-factly.  Then, after analyzing the situation, decided that cake for breakfast maybe isn’t the worst thing in the world and she decided to slice her a piece as well. I’m not being the best influence.
“You’re having cake for breakfast too?” I questioned.
She set it on her plate, “But this is only the second time I’m going to do it,” she said, as if that exonerates her. Then after a pause she added, “this year.”

This morning, she was up and at ’em before me. I heard her in the kitchen. I assumed she was making her “healthy” breakfast of Nutella toast. Instead, she’d had cake for breakfast again.
When I learned this, I playfully chided her. “I thought you were only going to do that two times this year.”
She looked directly at me. “Well. I lied.”

Okay then. Our morality is gone. Out the window. How are we holding up during our “social distancing”? We are eating cake for breakfast. And lying. And as I type this, she is on a screen right now. Her self imposed screen times are gone. This pandemic may make us better people, or we may turn into complete heathens by the time this is over. There is no telling what we may emerge as when this is over, but be assured of one thing…….we will weigh more!

 

Status of C-word epidemic: Yesterday, 2 confirmed cases were in Amarillo, about an hour away from my town. Schools extended spring break by one week, and my church cancelled services and transitioned to online. I sank into deep sadness. This whole thing that’s going on has shaken me up. I didn’t think I was a person to get so easily shaken. I’ve had to deal with that. Today, I am so much better. Not sure why, it’s like a switch was flipped. Nevertheless, I am grateful for where I am in this moment. Who knows about tomorrow or later today, but now I will appreciate the feeling of well-being I have. I’m so grateful for friends who have checked on me. We are not alone in this. We can’t all be strong all the time, but in our moments of strength is when we can help uplift the others who are scared and sad. This is effecting everyone. Today, I’ve been pulled from the pit and am renewed spiritually and emotionally. If there’s anything you need, let me know. Much love to all.

 

Emma’s 6th Birthday Party—emoji

I’m running so far behind, I’m not sure I’m coming or going.

Three weeks ago, we celebrated our little one’s sixth birthday and I have yet to document this momentous event with pictures.

This time, I did it differently. The first five of her birthdays, we have celebrated at home with friends in an old fashioned birthday party. I’m a bit old fashioned actually and I have learned that when having big parties and renting out places, serving 3 decker cakes, and having lots of hoopla, this only gets harder the older they get. So, we have celebrated at home, with homemade cupcakes and games.

And now here comes the BUT.

But this year…….

She wanted to have her party at the gymnastics center. If you’ve been paying any bit of attention, you’ll know that she is crazy about emojis right now. So of course, it had to be an emoji party. She has pined over other little girls’ fancy, two layer cakes and asked if she could have a big cake. So, I bit the bullet and went with it, no matter how much it went against my grain.

Who’s to say my grain’s going the right direction, anyway?

It was a ton of fun, very stress free for me, and dare I say…..easy.

The kids got to jump, run, swing, balance, and hang like monkeys.

I even did my part by making some “poop” cupcakes. Of course, Emma helped.

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Another birthday in the books.

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The Party

 

 

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Our baby girl turned one.

We drove to Texas early to celebrate with our  family and close friends.

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Here’s Emma Kate with her Grandy, who loves her so much.  Let me tell you how much Grandy loves Emma.  My mom (Grandy) never, and I mean NEVER allows her picture to be made.  Except with Emma.  Now that’s love, right there.

I tried to keep the party as simple as possible, and discovered that birthdays can easily get out of hand, and my stress level can easily go through the roof, with tears easily running down my cheeks.

Emma Kate loves Pete the Cat, especially “I Love My White Shoes”.  So with a little help from Pinterest and more experienced mothers who have gone before me, we went with a Pete the Cat theme.

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Let me tell you how much Pete the Cat loves his white shoes.  He loves his shoes when they are white, but then he steps in a pile of strawberries and they turn red.  Instead of boohooing, Pete just loves his red shoes instead.  And when he steps in a pile of blueberries and they turn blue, instead of pitching a fit, he just loves his blue shoes.  Then he steps in a pile of mud and you guessed it.  He loves his shoes brown.  Then he steps in a bucket of water and they turn all white again, but then they are wet!  But it’s all good with Pete and he loves his wet shoes too.

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Of course we needed strawberries and blueberries.  We had a little chocolate pudding for the mud, and then just some one year old friendly foods like crackers and goldfish, with some grown-up friendly food like sandwiches

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I was planning on cake balls and a cake, but making the cake turned into a fiasco.  A fiasco, I say.

Mostly because I procrastinate, and because I am so NOT Betty Crocker, I can barely get the stove turned on.  It would make more sense to order a cake, but somewhere in my perfectionist mind, I needed to make the cake myself, knowing good and well it wouldn’t be perfect.

Of course I found a recipe that involved way too many tricks and steps, of course I had to run to Walmart that day, of course at 1:00 I still didn’t have a cake made when the party was at three, of course tears were dripping into the batter as I frantically mixed and folded egg whites and sifted flour.

The icing turned out to be way too sweet and runny, but thanks to my dear husband who donned his Superman cape and convinced me that store-bought icing is not from the devil, then in the blink of an eye ran to the store and purchased it, then whisked back in a nanosecond and iced the cake beautifully, we had a decent cake before three o’clock.  No cake balls, but a decent cake.

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Notice I said “we” had a beautiful cake.  Emma had one with sickening sweet icing.

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Which probably explains this look and why she chose to eat three strawberries and barely touched the cake.

 

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She was a champ at opening presents and sat there and looked at each and every one of them without tiring.

She adores presents and wants to stop and play with them all.

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She even loved her cards.

 

 

 

 

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Despite my anxiety, the party was a success and the love Emma received was awesome.

 

So here’s to planning birthday party #2 eleven months early.

Maybe that way, we can have cake balls.