A Cake, A Guest and A List

Happy Friday, everyone!

I am knee-deep in preparations for this Sunday, which is both Easter and my son’s fourth birthday.  For this combination of  events, I will be hosting 30 people at my house.  In full disclosure, this stresses me out and makes me an unlikeable, certifiable maniac for the other poor souls who live with me here in Fordeville. 

Adding to my stress is the seemingly minor request made by the birthday boy.  Ever attentive to specifics, he has asked for not just a dinosaur cake, but a green stegosaurus cake with red plates on its back.  Righto.  Good thing I happen to have that exact configuration handy. 

As if. 

I can cook — but I’m not what I’d call a stellar baker or cake decorator.  So, amidst the various other preparations for Sunday, I’ll be somewhere between laughing at myself and throwing a cake pan against the wall within the next 48 hours.  My money is on the latter. 

I can’t promise any photos of the final product, but let me take a moment to share two photos of what my cake will not remotely resemble.  I will also go through this exercise with my son tomorrow, just to manage his expectations.

Cake I Can’t Make #1:  This is way out of my league on so many levels.  Cole is a lucky boy to have someone create this for him.  Cole does not live here. {photo:  www.cakecentral.com}


Cake I Can’t Make #2:  A tad more realistic but still — repeat after me — not going to happen.  See that priceless look of joy on this child’s face?  How sweet.  If you get a final cake photo from me, it will likely include a look on my son’s face of utter confusion and resentment because his cake looks like a chihuahua.  Or a generic orb.  {photo:  www.themeparty.com}


This might be a good segue to tell you about my guest post today over at Theta Mom, where I discuss my leap from corporate minion to stay at home mom.  It occurs to me that, had I made this transition years ago, I may not be in this specific state of panic over said stegosaurus cake.  Anyway.  I’m really grateful to have contributed this guest post — and if you’ve been around for a while, you know I think so highly of the Theta Mom community.  So, please, check it out.

And I can’t leave you for the weekend without updating you on the intense town pool wait list scenario.  Thanks to everyone for all of the support during this trying time (and also for the additional conniving suggestions on how to climb the list — you guys are a crafty bunch).  I’m pleased to report that I did not have to resort to many of my proposed, borderline unethical tactics to secure a spot.  It appears that enough people died, went bankrupt, moved away or suffered from abject social alienation to relinquish their memberships to my advantage.  Score.

Here’s how the big news went down.

My husband showed up in the family room waving an envelope in his hands the other night.  I was on glass number two or three of red wine after a long day of chasing down the stegosaurus cake pan.  The envelope, with its return address from the town’s Recreation Office, produced total anxiety; I swear, we both felt like it was a college admissions flashback.

Me:  “It’s so soon.  I don’t know if that’s good or bad.  I’m thinking good, especially after the Caddyshack Baby Ruth story I told at the pre-school bake sale to scare them off.  I had a prime audience.”

Him:  “Yeah, but the envelope is not fat.  Remember with college admissions, the fatter the envelope, the better.”

Me:  “Crap.  You might be right.  But do colleges even send letters by mail now?  It’s probably all electronic.  Did you know there’s a writing section on the SATs and now and the scoring system is different?”

Him:  “What are you talking about?”

Me:  “Why couldn’t they have the writing section when I was in high school?  I would have fared so much better.  My whole life could have been different.”

Him:  “How many glasses of wine did you have?  Open the fucking envelope.”

And then.

I love that they are so aware of the bullshit tension they’ve created, they actually positioned the letter to open exactly as I photographed it above — leading with a big, dorky Congratulations.  Like I passed some character screen (we all know that would have been dicey at best) or a written exam. 

But whatever.  I’m in.  I’m #251 no more.

Let the summer begin!  As soon as I figure out how to make this stegosaurus cake.

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  1. Jessica says:

    Good luck on that cake. I would just end up buying cupcakes. Happy birthday to your son.

    • fordeville says:

      Thanks Jessica. I usually do just buy a cake or cupcakes but I feel compelled to attempt this, in some sick validation of my new SAHM gig. I have to go find red icing now.

  2. Congrats on getting into the pool.

    Regarding the cake, I bet your bakery has a book full of dinosaur cakes they can do for you. It will be a bit more expensive than baking it yourself, but no where near as expensive as the therapy bills you’ll have if you tackle it yourself. 😉

    • fordeville says:

      Thanks Margaret. You are probably as relieved as I am about the pool, because now I don’t have to show up at your place with my two kids in tow.

      And yes, I should have just hit up a bakery for the pre-historic cake. But my guilt-meets-masochism gene kicked in. Wish me luck.

  3. Yay! You made it!

  4. The congrats letter should have come with a cake.

    • fordeville says:

      Yes — especially if it met the stegosaurus birthday cake specs.
      Or a congratulatory flask would have been fine too.

  5. anna says:

    oh i love the new sahm fordeville! i will admit i love making the kids birthday cakes, but the dino would be beyond my abilities. at least your son will be distracted by easter candy and the 30 guests if all does not go as planned with the cake. also, as he is 4, probably all will be as he planned as long as there is cake in any form!

    happy birthday little fordeville!

    • fordeville says:

      I like your thinking — distraction via sugar when the cake fails. You are a true pro at the mom gig 🙂

  6. Stopping by after loving your post at Theta Mom. I can tell we think alike from that post.

    I have to laugh because when I first scrolled down on the post and saw that first cake I thought, holy cow, she is good, one of those baking fanatics that make me feel like less of a mom. Then loved reading the explanation! Good luck, I would just buy a cake. And hosting parties turns me into a witch too, you are no alone.

    • fordeville says:

      Jean — thanks for stopping by! Trust me, my baking will never make you feel like less of a mom. This, I can promise you.

  7. I’ve been a SAHM for 7 years and I would have no flipping clue how to make a Stegosaurus cake. Or any cake at all, really. Which is why I usually have someone else make my cakes for me. Though nothing fancy, just like the grocery store. Because I think my kids know better than to ask for specifics.

    • fordeville says:

      Thanks for stopping by! I hope it didn’t come across that I think SAHM = lots of free time to bake. Au contraire!
      The grocery store cake has always worked for us, too. This year I’m trying my hand at the homemade version, now that I’ve secured what appears to be a fairly foolproof stegosaurus pan. Now if someone could lend me their artistic cake decor skills, I’ll be all set…

  8. YAy for the pool 🙂 And are you up to your elbows in icing right now?!?!?

    PreKids I made all the fancy easter cakes that were on family circle magazine and stuff like that. It took HOURS and many many trips to the store for supplies. Now I just keep it simple. I still bake myself but I don’t go crazy with the decorating.

    • fordeville says:

      Sorry, I just now got the icing off my hands to reply…
      And did you say Family Circle?! I haven’t thought about that magazine in years. Probably because I don’t bake.

  9. Congrats on your town pool achievement. We’re on a FOUR YEAR waiting list for ours. Dying to see how your Stegosaurus cake turned out. Pics please!

    • fordeville says:

      Four years! I’m sorry, but that makes me feel better. And your letter better be embossed in gold when it arrives.

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