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Monday, March 16, 2009

Sometimes it's better not to talk

A couple months ago I got tagged in one of those Facebook notes where you're supposed to write 25 random things about yourself. I actually managed to dig deep enough to create the list, and threw it out onto FB for all the world to read. However, there are two seemingly innocent revelations that have come back to haunt me:


9) I love to burn things and blow things up!! Not in a scary way, don't worry :) More like fireworks (not the sissy type that are available in NC!) and bonfires.

19) I love to bake. I can do amazing things with cakes and buttercream and/or fondant. I'm sad that my kids have had mommy cakes for so long that they ask for a Costco cake to be different.

One of my friends read the note. She mentioned to her daughter that poor, poor KathyB! doesn't get to make birthday cakes anymore. So last month her daughter decided that I should make her birthday cake. She waltzed right up to me while I was volunteering in her class and declared that I just had to make her cake. She was ridiculously cute when she said it. Who could say no to that? Oh, who am I kidding? Do I ever say no?

The evening before the party I began making the cake and I had to get it done. The next day was booked from sunup to sundown. I'd been given specific guidance by the child. She wanted a cheerleader cake that was half Tarheel blue and half NC State red so that both of her parents would be happy. People out here are CRAZY for college sports. It's a sickness, really. I've found it's best to just nod your head and smile.
I don't want to drag this out, so let's just say everything went wrong. My gel dyes that I needed to tint the frosting had dried up (I really hadn't done a cake in awhile), a cake fell on the floor... it was ridiculous. I'm pretty sure it was like Laurel and Hardy do cake decorating 101, except there was only one of me and I made twice the mess. At midnight I was still working on that bleeping cake. Here's what I made:


Doesn't look a stinkin' thing like what I was asked to make, does it? I honestly wasn't trying to be difficult. The only gel colors I had that were still usable were that lovely (Tarheel) blue and a rusty orange color from when I did a Tigger cake. And when the color was so clearly Tarheel blue, well, I just went with it.

* * *

In spite of the fact that I had produced a birthday cake that did not even vaguely resemble what their daughter had requested, these friends wanted to show their appreciation for the cake. They brought over some illegal South Carolina fireworks the following weekend. We went into an empty cul-de-sac across the street from our house and launched fireworks for a solid half hour. It was beautiful.

The friends left and I started getting the kids ready for bed while Pat was taking out the garbage. I saw the sheriff's car as it drove up the street, but didn't think too much of it. It was just a couple fireworks, right? Surely they wouldn't come out for that noisy bag of TNT we blew up a couple little firecrackers, right? I guess the sheriff had a different perspective.

My dear husband is a staunch follower of rules and always colors inside the lines. I'm not completely sure what happened next... The sheriff came... Pat ran... The ginormous box that the fireworks had been packaged in was shoved under a car... Pat may or may not have dived under that same car as well. I'm not clear on that part. However, I am absolutely certain that he was grumpy when he came inside and I made the mistake of asking why he'd taken so long to put out the trash.

* * *

My daughter's birthday was two weeks ago, and we finally got around to having her party this weekend. The party was planned. Details were checked. And then out of nowhere, three days before the party, "Mom, what kind of cake are you making for my birthday?" Crap. I thought we were all about ice cream cake from Coldstone Creamery these days, but apparently seeing me losing my mind making someone else's cake reminded my child of how much she enjoys pushing my buttons my wonderful cakes.

She wanted a Hannah Montana cake, and she wanted her Hannah Montana doll to be on it. Hmmm. I decided I'd make the cake into a stage and put the doll in the middle of it. How hard could it be?

Note to self: Whenever you say how hard could it be or what could go wrong... expect that nothing good will happen.


Stupid cake. I didn't even finish decorating it. The back of the stage immediately started falling forward. Apparently there's a trick to stacking multiple layers of cake into a physical structure. Want to know the trick? Good. Go google it and then come back and tell me because I clearly haven't got a clue. By the the time we sang Happy Birthday the only thing keeping the back of the stage from completely falling over was the fact that Hannah Montana's head was smashed into it. How do you submit an entry to cake wrecks anyway?

Abby and Emily's birthday is coming up in April. They're unfazed by the Hannah debaucle and are already plotting the cake sculpture that they want me to create.

For everyone else, I'm amending the FB note and it now reads:

19) I love to bake. I used to be able to do amazing things with cakes and buttercream and/or fondant. I retired in humiliation after Hannah Montana was nearly swallowed alive by one of my creations. I'm sad relieved that my kids have had mommy cakes for so long that they ask for a Costco cake to be different.

The other part of the note... about blowing things up?

I'm keepin' it.

And to the Queen Bhe -- I know you read this and I loved making your daughter's cake! It really was fun. I just didn't realize I'd have to make so many other cakes, too : )

43 comments:

Creative Junkie said...

ROTF!!

I personally think your cakes were gorgeous and hell, the fact that you even attempted to make one earns you big-time mommy points. I lost all my mommy points when I declared years ago that the next time I will bake a cake will be NEVER. For crying out loud, isn't that what Wegmans is for?

Anonymous said...

Your cakes are always special and full of love. The girls will always remember them. Love MOM

blueviolet said...

I would have been delighted with either one of those cakes and I can see why your kids love them. But, I am a little bit sad that Hannah Montana survived that near fatal accident. Maybe we should blow her up?

Meg said...

Stick dowel rods into the cake to make it stand up. Make the dowels larger if it's a huge Food Network Challenge sort of cake. Chopsticks might be fine for the stage cake.

The whole fireworks debaucle...we'll see that soon on Cops, right?

Tsquared417 said...

Much better than I could do! :) Love the Hannah cake...so cute! I am a rule follower too...would have been right under the car with your hubby!

Kristina P. said...

You should work for Duff on Ace of Cakes. He likes to blow cakes up!! Perfect for you!

tlc said...

Your cakes look awesome! So they didn't turn out the way you had hoped...if they were all perfect, it would make your friends feel inferior.

4riddles said...

What a good mom. Even tilting, it was better than anything I could ever do!
Now...A picture of your husband under the car hiding would have been great!

Sturgmom said...

So Charm City Cakes won't be offering you a job anytime soon... So what? You've got plenty on your plats as it is! (Please tell me you watch Ace of Cakes on Food Network or you will have no idea what I'm blabbering about.)

Anyway, I think you did a fabulous job on both cakes. And way to avoid arrest!! Success!

LadyFi said...

LOL - loved reading this post!

I can burn things in the kitchen.. almost anything! Kind of like a cooking firework party...

Your cakes looked wonderful - even the one you said didn't work...

Kathy B! said...

I love Ace of Cakes!!

And I wish that Hannah Montana cake would have blown up. I worked waaaay to hard to have it look soooo mediocre.

Kate said...

I think you did a great job, but we are always hard on ourselves. I used to make all of my kids cakes too and I think they got sick of it and now they just have me make ice cream cakes much easier. Have a great week.

The Blonde Duck said...

That's still a better cake than I can make. Just wait until you see the world's most garish cupcakes Thursday...

Daisigirl said...

Maybe you could use the fireworks to blow up your cakes! Now, that would be something to see! :0) If only you could hear me laughing as I read your posts each time! Thanks! Have a great Monday!

Sapphire said...

Oh Kathy B., you keep me laughing!!! That was HILARIOUS!!!!
You totally rock!!!

Gibby said...

That UNC cake looks deelish, and coming from a Duke fan, that is a lot! And as for the Hannah cake...I think you get an A for effort. Don't be upset when I tell you that Chuckles requested a cookie cake this year. Mrs. Fields, here I come!

Like the new blog look, BTW. And I second what ink said the other day...it's awesome that so many people found your blog since it rocks so much.

And hello to Anonymous Mom!

D said...

I love the texture of the Hannah Montana cake. Are those individual dots of frosting?

Your cake stories remind me of the process involved in almost every sculpture I've ever made.

bernthis said...

If that stuff comes back to haunt, I should have written on mine that collect 20 dollar bills and men who live to make me happy.

sunnymom said...

Those are great!!! I wish I had the time and patience to make B-day cakes for Tooters but it just does not happen for me. Who cares if the stage is a little crooked it gives it character. If all else fails blame it on Barbie she got to wild singing lol.

Susie said...

Dowels are the way to go for structure. I think your cakes look great and we (cake people) have all been there:-)

ymK said...

The cakes look yummy. I have never baked a cake for my kids, so you are supermom compared to me!

Becca said...

I think that the cake looks great. I had made an apple cake which was a semi disaster. The icing started to melt which meant that the cake was sliding apart. What a mess. I think that a little tipping of the stage is alright. It is a concert right!

Becca

D said...

Hmmm. I'm not sure how to email you either.

Thanks for asking to see my sculpture. I would love to share it on the site, I'm just not sure I'm ready to give up my anonymity. Meaning, I'm not sure if I'm okay with my students potentially finding my blog.

However, there are a few images of my older work in this post.

http://www.12pair.com/2009/01/secret-3-following-your-fascinations.html

K said...

You tons of style points in my book. About as cool as I get is cupcakes or a two layer round cake (from a mix). I think I'm getting an D in how to be a housewife.

Hope you had a good weekend.

Jonny's Mommy said...

My mom had a cake made for me one time with a Barbie baked inside. Actually, I don't know how the Barbie got inside, but there she was with a yellow dress and it was really cool. Never got another one like that again. Hmmm....maybe this is why.

ScoMan said...

This sounds like a warning to be careful what I put out on the Internet. You may have just saved my life.

Jessica said...

My GOD your cakes are awesome!! I threw my cake pans out for a reason and let's just leave it at that. Looks like you know exactly what you are doing.

happeegrrrl@yahoo.com said...

I usually get in on the comment action earlier KathyB! Your blog is getting freakin' popular. Are you still on the Mom Blog network?

Nana said...

My birthday is on April 7th. I love marzipan cakes, with lots of whip cream and raspberry filling.

I'm not hip on Hannah Montana however, I do love Doris Day.

Thanks so much.

Loves and Kisses
Nana

Jen said...

regardless, I am impressed.

Mama Krit said...

Hahah! I was laughing through this whole post. I think the cake looks awesome! And Hannah Montana could use a few calories of frosting anyways. So, am I lame to admit that I don't even know how to respond to those notes on facebook? I tried and tried and am either completely stupid, or ...wait.. no, that's pretty much the only explanation. :)

Mary K Brennan said...

Allright, first things first. Shall we address the "Likes to blow things up?" All I have to say is I hope they have WIFI in the slammer. A day without your blog could drive one to insanity. Secondly, I had no idea of your awesome cake decorating ability. So I will formally put my October order in now. I'll settle for Hanna Montana (it looks incredible). My kids get Sam's Club cakes, but I think I've gained some inspiration from you. Potter's BDay is in July. I think I'll begin practicing tomorrow. I'll start with let's say...a cupcake.

ck said...

Maybe it's just me, but I like the idea of Hannah Montana buried under a cake.

Yaya said...

Who knew you were such a good cake maker! You could totally be on Ace of Cakes!

Zeemaid said...

LOL great job on the cakes. So what if it wasn't red. It was pretty good! I would have used toothpicks in the cake layers for the stage but it still looked pretty cool and I like what one commenter said.. you don't want to show up other moms after all. :)

Minxy Mimi said...

Those cakes rock, IMO!!!
I would eat them any day of the week... all days of the week if you asked me!

CynthiaK said...

I think Hannah Montana smashed into anything is just fine. (was that my outside voice?!)

What I meant was, I don't really see any problem with a collapsing cake when it lands on a Hannah Montana doll. It's charming. Really. :)

CynthiaK said...

I think Hannah Montana smashed into anything is just fine. (was that my outside voice?!)

What I meant was, I don't really see any problem with a collapsing cake when it lands on a Hannah Montana doll. It's charming. Really. :)

Restless Housewife said...

Wow! I lasted 1/2 hr. at a grocery store bakery after attempting to just FROST a cake...it was a nightmare. Needless to say, I'm completely envious of your baking and decorating talent.

Grand Pooba said...

For reals? Okay, your so called cake disasters would be my cake wonderous creations!

Cake wrecks Schmake wrecks!

faemom said...

Let's just say that you beat my cakes anyway because apparently cake decorating genuis is not inherited.

Helene said...

I think both cakes totally rock! And you know...it's really all about how good the frosting is anyway!! And the point is that you tried...if my kids asked me to bake their b-day cake, I'd laugh for a good long hour and then say "okay, seriously....where do you want Mommy to buy your cake from?"

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