Friday, October 30, 2020

7 Quick Takes about Growing In to Adulthood, Massive Surprise Cakes, and Doing Arithmetic with Spiderman

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?


Well, we finally did it. For the first time, we put Christmas lights on the outside of the house, just like real grownups.

I'm 38 years old, and I don't know why but I've always felt like there was some association between competent adulthood and having it together enough to string some LEDs from your roofline.

And we have arrived.


A child in our house requested a "surprise cake" for their birthday this week, and I knew that this child had in mind the time we surprised their brother with one of those pinata cakes where M&Ms spill out when you cut into it.

So I did some thinking about what similar (but not quite the same) thing we could do, and I settled on this 6-layer rainbow cake

I was right, this was such a surprise.

It required two cakes' worth of batter and 2.5 canisters of frosting (I wanted it to be thick enough so the birthday child couldn't see the colored layers before cutting into it.) 

The finished product was so heavy we needed a wheelbarrow to bring it to the dining room table and now we all have diabetes.


Phillip and I started making the cake after the kids went to bed for the night and it took forever

We made it from scratch instead of using a boxed mix because it had to be gluten-free (storebought GF vanilla cake mix is ridiculously expensive and tastes like cardboard.) Then we had to divide the batter into separate bowls and get all the colors just right, and after that we had to bake it in installments because we only had 3 pans.

By the time we'd taken the last pan out of the oven, Phillip was exhausted and so was I. We got ready for bed, and just as we were lying down I said, "You go to sleep, I'm just going to take the cakes out of the pan and I'll be right back."

Then I stayed up until 1:45 putting the whole thing together and frosting it.  

I knew if I hadn't tricked him into going to sleep, he would've tried to convince me to finish it in the morning. But when I envisioned trying to assemble this behemoth cake with little fingers sneaking frosting and little voices asking "can I help?" while being on-call to solve problems with the kids' online schoolwork and trying not to spoil the surprise for the birthday child... well, I wanted to avoid that even more than I wanted sleep.


The other kids all made "happy birthday" cards and the one from my 4-year-old was so cute. 

Apparently he's been listening to me talk to the 1st grader about punctuation because when he showed me the card he'd made, the whole front was filled with exclamation marks.

"Wow, that's a lot of exclamation points!" I said, and he answered, "Well, yeah. Because it's exciting!"


My kids, still on a quest for the best dubstep remixes on the Internet, stumbled across this gem on YouTube. 

This Harry Potter remix didn't sound like much to write home about at first, but the beat drop caught us all by surprise and was hilariously perfect.


Our elementary school usually holds a costume parade during the week of Halloween, which isn't happening this year due to COVID. In lieu of the parade, kids were told they could wear their costumes to virtual school.

Which turned out to be pretty amusing and probably more enjoyable for me to watch in the end.

Spiderman, Spiderman, learning whatever a spider can.


The nonexistent school parade and the lack of our church's annual trunk-or-treat activity didn't bother me, but after all the kids' hard work making their costumes, it really ticked me off when the town voted at the last minute (really, it happened on Monday) to cancel trick-or-treating this year.

How the town can tell my family we aren't allowed to go for a walk around the neighborhood tomorrow night (which we totally are) or tell residents they can't leave bowls of candy on their front porches if they're so inclined (which some undoubtedly will anyway,) I don't know.

But whatever. We're blowing up a pumpkin instead.

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1 comment:

AnneMarie said...

That cake is so impressive! You guys did great work. I am extremely intrigued by the idea of a pinata cake-I'm going to have to look that up. I don't ever get the chance to make cakes (my husband doesn't like cake, and it would take forever for me and the two boys to eat an entire cake...or I'd just eat the whole thing, which wouldn't be good) but maybe I'll figure out a reason to make an exciting "surprise" cake sometime.

That's unfortunate that trick-or-treating is cancelled! I don't know what the rules are over here, but a couple of the old ladies on our block have already declared that we ARE trick-or-treating, so I have candy on hand to pass out (or put in a bowl) just in case that happens. I think that trick-or-treating happens to be one of those activities that fits really well with Covid-restrictions to begin with (aside from the neighborhoods that get jam-packed with hordes of people)-you can easily go from house to house one group at a time, you're outside, etc.