Wednesday, 25 August 2010

The Icing On The Cake...Not!

I was very excited today to be delivering my children to the hands of a friend's nanny so I could prepare for their joint party tomorrow. I imagined a few hours icing the cakes, and then some me time, read a book, maybe even have a nap. But no everything these days seems to take forever, like wading through treacle, to the point that the clock seems to be racing round and I'm moving backwards!.
 Now Polly has a pretty pink butter icing confection topped with flowers and a 'hello kitty' decoration. Edwards' a garish red iced cake with a wobbly spider's web and a spiderman figure in pride of place. Plus various shades of fairy cake. What I hadn't allowed for is the virtual impossibility of creating your own red icing, especially butter icing, the best I could do was a muddy dark pink with the help of some black colouring. With the vision of some of the more 'macho' boys at the party giggling at Edward's pink cake, I chucked half a ton of butter icing in the bin. I also discovered more food colouring means yuckier taste (maybe that's why I hate shop cakes). Eventually I managed a passable red with glace icing mixed with red and a dash of black food colouring. Piping the spider's web proved tricky too for my not so steady hands. All in all it certainly isn't cheaper to make your own cakes any more, especially if you factor in the enormous amount of time, mess and not inconsiderable stress, but looking at them now I can see the labour of love and I hope my children will appreciate that.

Spiderman Cake

Hello Kitty Cake

The whole party thing has been quite stressful, probably on a par with delivering a seminar at work or attending a gruelling meeting, which just goes to prove what I've always believed, if you take away situations that lead to stress, you'll just create stress around other, more trivial situations. Maybe it is part of the human condition-we need stress, if there's no anxiety in my life, I'll invent some. Have I got enough presents for prizes and party bags? Am I going to be able to control 20 odd children enough to get them to play games? Will enough people turn up? But all the effort will be worth it when I see the kid's faces as they enjoy a good old fashioned party with homemade cakes and retro party games followed by a bit of a boogie to high school musical. I might even have fun after a couple of shots of fizzy pink wine!

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