Try, try again

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SG bought me a cruiser bike and it’s not even my birthday.  It has a bell and a basket and I am in big time mushy love with it.  I’m not the most, hmmm, coordinated? person I know, and I haven’t done much bike riding in forever, so I will probably start out on bike paths and then later work my way up to riding on the actual street to go to Trader Joe’s and load up my basket with soy milk and dry roasted unsalted almonds.  I can’t wait to go ride alongside the beach, but I will have to since it’ll be a few weeks before I can get over there. 

So Sophie turned nine this week, which is a little weird in that timewarp way that babies have of turning into tweens and doing things that make you consider asking the bakery to write something really and truly mean on their birthday cake instead of “Happy Birthday.” 

I agreed to a slumber party, which is happening right this moment.  This will be my first and last one of these as a parent.  It’s not that the kids are being awful, it’s just that I am not nice enough to be enveloped in so much high pitched screaming and giggling for so many hours on end.  I thought I’d make some cakepops for the party, because my secret fantasy is to be a craft-slash-food-slash-photography blogger and so I thought I should try something in keeping with my dreams.  I know there are specific obstacles in my path, but why let lack of talent in all three of those areas hold me back?  You know?  I’d emailed my mom the cakepops and she was as smitten as I was and suggested that she come over and make them with me because maybe they’d be fun favors for my sister’s wedding this fall.

Baking is not cooking.  Cooking you can zen and wing and get all sideways with the recipe and it doesn’t matter too much.  Baking?  Is a scientific art, and when Bakerella tells you something like, “quarter-sized balls” and you make some and go, These are kind of bigger than a quarter, but oh well, then you end up with pathetic, but funny, results like this:

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Other fatal errors were mashing the sticks into the balls and flattening the tops, buying purple candy melts, and putting too much frosting in the chocolate cake.  Oh, and the chocolate cake was too moist.

Shortly after that photo was taken, more cakepops slid down their sticks.  Like the ball in Times Square on New Year’s Eve if it had been designed by a drunk four year old with awful color sense.

This morning as I got ready for the party (that involved a lot of yogastyle breathing while I worked my butt off and the birthday girl did not so much.  I kept finding her watching tv in her underwear, and when she saw me, she’d screech, I’M JUST TAKING A BREAK!) I decided I’d give it another go.  So, this time – better cake mix (no pudding in the mix), lots less frosting added, melted swank chocolate chips and sprinkles instead of candy melts (that stuff is nasty) and little cherry-sized cake balls:

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Much better, right?  They’re no match for most of the other cakepops out in the wild, but they made me happy. 

SG came to the party and brought all the ingredients to make carne asada tacos and then he cooked for us.  It was so good that after he left I made another taco and probably I will make one about two minutes after I get up in the morning.  Coffee and tacos: Breakfast of Champions.  Have a couple of cakepops and you are on your way to world domination, if that’s your thing.

He also brought 8 pounds of pinata candy (there were 7 girls, including my two) and he did pinata duty.

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The pinata was so heavy that the little hook to hang it on the rope ripped right out after the first couple of swings.  SG tied it back up by a petal and did his best to stand clear and not get clobbered.  Soph is in her pajamas.  The girls didn’t go to sleep until after midnight, and I am pretending that I don’t hear a couple of them right now, but they were in their pjs by 6:30.

Ok.  I’ve got waffle duty in the morning.  And then maybe I will ride my bike to the park and take a nap.   

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