Tuesday, June 19, 2012

A Semi-Sweet Cake Story

Peanut's birthday comes only a few weeks after Little Monkey's...which is right about the same time as a few other close family members on both sides of the family (an Auntie and a Grandma!).  So this year, we celebrated his actual birthday with our extended families....and saved our own little party for later-on, when the calendar was quiet again. :)

Rose and Little Monkey decorated the kitchen with another paper banner, while Peanut was taking his nap....I think these are becoming a birthday tradition at our house!  I was surprised at how important the banner was to LM - and he insisted on cutting all of the triangles himself!  I think he drew the "letters" on it, too, lol! :)

BUT.  Peanut's cake turned out to be something of a funny story....at least, it's funny now, anyway!
As I mentioned in an earlier post, the kids and I have been having a lot of fun planning and decorating themed cakes for their birthdays this year.  And everyone was very excited about surprising Peanut with a Thomas the Tank Engine cake (since he loves trains).

But as you can see......

That cake was not meant to be. :)

After looking at many different (complicated!) Thomas cakes online, I thought I would try to put together a "simple" version of my own (combining several different cakes that I liked)....and not worry about finding a tutorial or instructions.  I guess I was feeling pretty confident after having such good success with our first one, lol! ;)  And how hard could it be, right?

As it turns out, there are some things a Mama just needs to know about decorating cakes.  Such as - making sure your layers are thoroughly cooled before cutting and stacking them!  I was in a hurry to bake & assemble the cake, to make sure there would be enough time for the kids to decorate it before Peanut woke up.  So after cooling the layers for a half-hour or so on the counter, I quickly put them into the freezer for another ten minutes more.  I thought for sure they were cool to the touch.....but, as I discovered a few minutes later, apparently they were still quite warm in the middle!  

I cut and stacked the pieces (four layers high in one section) and it all looked nice and neat at first.  But after a few minutes, as I was putting on the frosting, the layers slowly began to sink and they broke right off the side of the cake!  I tried to patch it all back together with more frosting, but that just made things worse...I even tried using toothpicks to hold everything in place.  In the end, it all finally just crumbled, lol!  It was quite a sight!

General and Rose were surprised (and trying hard not to laugh, lol!), but poor Little Monkey was pretty upset!  Thankfully, I had one more box of cake-mix up in the cupboard and we were able to finish a second cake before dinner.  We just used the rest of the original, blue frosting and added some M & M's around the edge.  The colors were cheerful, and Peanut sure enjoyed it!  And really, that was the main goal. :)

Later on, as I talked over the cake incident with Little Monkey, I discovered that his concern really had very little to do with the fact that Thomas crumbled.....he was upset because he thought that we just wouldn't have any cake at all!  So in the end....all was well.

And besides, it has turned out to be quite the family joke story for my kids to tell, about the day Mom smushed Thomas our cake-decorating adventures! ;)

Our Spring Birthdays are almost complete.......there's only one more to go - and we're celebrating Rose's birthday this week!  This year, we invited some friends over for a Josefina (American Girl) -themed party, which is later today!  Right now, I'm off to get started on her cake - wish me luck!  

I'll be back with more pictures before too long!


  1. Oh, how sweet and courages of you to try. I think it turned out great ... I mean how can you not enjoy a blue frosted M&M covered cake !!!

  2. So funny! It will be a story told every time a birthday cake is attempted... for endless years :>)


Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment! Things are pretty busy around our house, so I can't always leave as many replies as I would like to. But please know that I look forward to reading every note you send my way - they brighten my day! Blessings,Collette

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