All week I’ve been asking Tommy what he’d like to get Daddy for his birthday, which is today. Since Logan and Dad’s birthday last month, Tommy is just now understanding that when it’s your birthday, people give you presents and a cake with candles. All week Tommy has been pointing out what items Daddy would like… the shiny new dump truck or the Lego garbage truck he’s been eyeing. “Peeeeeees! Daddy wants it!” The biggest excitement has been over the Lightning McQueen and Mater birthday cake on display in the bakery of our local Target. Every time we walk by it he asks if we can get it for Daddy.
Yesterday we hit up the grocery store to buy the items needed for Tommy and me to make a birthday cake for Daddy. I picked out a fudge marble cake mix (thinking it would have an additional step that Tommy would enjoy) some frosting, candles that Tommy chose, and a can of blue icing that came with a fine tip to be able to write on the cake. I realize I could have easily made this from scratch, but that’ll have to be for the next birthday. Maybe Bill’s mom in September?
The store didn’t have small Mater and Lightning McQueen figurines that would work for a cake, so we compromised with something else. Tommy was equally as happy to decorate with them instead.
Yesterday evening, Tommy donned his apron and we set about making the cake. I didn’t want to deal with trying to frost a layered cake with an almost-three-year-old, so we just baked it in our 13×9 pan. Tommy got to help!
One of his new things, he has to smell everything. “Tommy mell it!”
Adding eggs. Mommy does this part.
Adding water and vegetable oil like a big boy.
A little extra flour since we’re technically “at altitude.”
Stirring the batter was loads of fun.
Smelling the fudge batter. “Mmmmm, yummy!”
Swirling the fudge batter around with a chopstick was fun too.
One more sniff, and it’s ready to bake.
Here I’m telling him that the cake batter is yucky, but I let him have a little taste anyway.
This morning we got to work decorating.
“Mommy, I got frosting on my thumb!”
We decorated the cake with Tommy’s second choice of decoration: construction vehicles!
After Tommy put the vehicles on the cake, he was a little confused as to why he couldn’t remove them and play with them. At one point he was on the verge of tears when we told him no. Reassurance that he could play with them after we ate the cake helped him feel better.
Adding the curly candles that he picked out.
Admiring (and smelling) the finished product.
My lesson learned: those canister-style frosting dispensers with the push-tip are next-to-impossible to write with. Plans to write “Happy Birthday Daddy” quickly became “Happy B-Day.” I would have had better luck making the frosting myself and using a piping bag.
The back hoe at work!
The front end loader is sinking into the cake thanks to some encouragement from the kid.
Daddy can’t wait to take a bite!
The cake itself wasn’t as sickeningly sweet as I expected. It was overcooked by a few minutes though, so it was a little dry in my opinion. Either way, it was a fun experience for all of us.