Ten years ago for my eldest son’s first birthday, I decorated my first cake – and I am not talking about whipping out a can of Betty Crocker icing and slathering it on some baked chocolatey goodness. Rather, I am talking about making my own Buttercream icing, separating it out into multiple bowls, coloring each bowl of icing just the right shade of necessary pigment, and then using a cake decorating set to bring to life to the various cartoon characters beloved by my children, and requested by them for their special day. A good friend introduced me to this whole process for her son’s first birthday and I thought – “how hard can it be to decorate one of these cakes?” Boy was I overly full of my super mommy skills. While I did manage to pull off a stellar Lightening McQueen cake for my son’s first birthday, it took me about 5 hours to do so and the aftermath of destruction in my kitchen was beyond words. Yet the squeals of delight when he saw his cake made the whole painful process well worth it.
Fast forward to today and these special request birthday cakes have become tradition. From Elmo, to Spongebob, to Cookie Monster and many other characters in-between; every birthday gets a one of a kind mommy made cake decorated with love and a lot of sugar. And there is no better feeling then the accolades of appreciation from my children once I have finished and they get to see their masterpiece. Thankfully I have perfected my process and what started out as a grueling endeavor has turned into a mini labor of love rooted in a timeless tradition.