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Posts Tagged ‘past tense’

It’s snowing like crazy cakes out there so before the power goes out I’ll just fill in some of the details of this nutty week.

Originally the “plan” was to have an after-school birthday party with design your own pizzas and cake [Charlotte requested a “castle” cake] afterwards. But that got moved to Friday when we found out that Charlotte’s school (K-5 singing) concert was to be that Wed. night. She was very excited to be singing in a concert on her birthday!

Monday after school Charlotte assisted me in the kitchen with the cupcakes we’d be taking to school for snack on Wednesday. She’s a good helper – except for wiping her hands on her already-grubby clothes. Tuesday she helped me with mixing up the chocolate frosting for the tops – and I would do the final decorating on Wednesday morning. Charlotte also had the special job of hiding a chocolate coin inside each cupcake – before they were frosted, of course! I wanted to do these fancy cupcake crowns with edible pearls and jello jewels (to go with the castle), but my order from Sugarcraft (my favorite online cake and cookie decorating supply) wasn’t due to arrive until Wednesday, so I had to go to Plan B, which was pink and aqua icing stars with a Jr. Mint peppermint crunch candy on top. Keepin’ it simple – bwah hah hah!

I should backtrack here a bit in the story and tell you that on Saturday (the 8th) Chris and I surprised Charlotte with an early birthday present of a mystery trip to Johnson to see the Vermont Ballet Theatre perform The Nutcracker. It was a huge hit – she was enthralled throughout the whole show (and very appreciative to Mommy and Daddy, which was gratifying).  But on Sunday we couldn’t get any cooperation or commitment out of Charlotte about tidying up the TV room and her arts and crafts area of the kitchen so we scrapped the plans for any party and settled on a family dinner on Thursday (her menu: chicken fingers,  Annie’s noodles (like Kraft Dinner only organic) and green beans) with the birthday cake afterwards.

Which brings us to The Big Day. We woke up to lots of snow, and there was a 2-hour delay before school started, so Charlotte got to unwrap most of her presents in the morning. She was very excited to get her own Webkinz! Thanks, Marv and Parv. And we love the Mercy Watson book!  So funny. And thanks also for the pretty hair clips and the photo album. She also got a pair of clip-on birthstone earrings, some sparkly silver sneaker/ballet flats, 2 prs. of tights, 3 prs. of underwear, a Magic School Bus DVD, and other stuff she’d already gotten into earlier like a silver soccer ball, a paint-your-own piggy bank kit and Skippy John Jones Mummy Troubles book.

Then it was off to school, and I dashed through the snow to finish decorating the cupcakes. The timing was great, because just as I pulled up with the cupcakes, the kids were trucking back from the Memorial Building where they’d been rehearsing the concert. So we went to Mrs. Menard’s classroom and Charlotte distributed the snacks (dropped one, which was okay because we had extras). They seemed to be good, but once the first coin was discovered, most of the kids tore theirs apart and only wanted to save the frosted tops. Some didn’t like them at all, treasure or no treasure!

I was still in the midst of constructing the architectural elements for the castle cake, so after school I got Charlotte out of the kitchen with a Barbie Diaries DVD I’d forgotten to wrap. Then an early dinner of leftovers, and off to the concert we went. Mrs. Chadwick, the music teacher, wanted everyone one in the same oversized red T-shirt / kimono for the Kindergarteners, so Charlotte didn’t get to wear the beautiful fleece kimono/bathrobe (complete with obi) I had made for her a couple of weeks ago when were first informed about the costume requirements for the concert. Oh well – she needed a bigger bathrobe anyway! Now she’s all set for a Halloween costume for ’08 too! The concert was very good, all the kids have been working very hard and the efforts paid off. I have most of the grades on tape so we’ll bring it to Hudson with us.

After Charlotte finally got to bed (another late night) Wed. I was able to sit down and finish the cuff on her felted mittens.

Intarsia mittens, felted with a furry cuff added after felting

Intarsia mittens, felted with a furry cuff added after felting

Thursday was equally insane, mostly centered around getting this finished:

Lots of nice details, but that *gack* pink icing!

Lots of nice details, but that *gack* pink icing!

Certainly the tallest cake I’ve ever made. Not the work of a professional, that’s for sure. But as Chris put it, it has a certain “lived in” quality about it. Grammy (aka Kay) wanted to take us all out to dinner at a restaurant, so after frantically putting on the finishing touches – or some of them, as the damn jello jewels wouldn’t stick to the walls no matter what kind of “mortar” I tried. Had to resort to toothpicks finally. So we drove through yet another snowstorm to Juniper’s in Lyndonville where we had a lovely dinner. And even though they knew we were headed home for birthday cake, the servers still surprised Charlotte with a huge flaming sparkler stuck in a bowl of ice cream and sang “Happy Birthday” to  her. Wish I’d had the camera then – she was certainly surprised if not a little terrified! So despite our best intentions of an early dinner and reasonable bedtime, we got home at around 9:00 p.m. and Charlotte chose to only open Grammy’s gifts and not do the cake yet. Just as well. Charlotte got the newest Skippy John Jones book (Dinosaur Bones) and a lovely set of alphabet stampers.

Here comes Friday, and yet more snow after school. I had invited Abby (7 yrs.) and my friend, her mother Kathy, over to hang out and have some dinner and cake, but after Kathy picked Abby up from school and got stuck in her own driveway, she opted to stay put. Good choice. So we had Charlotte’s birthday dinner of chicken fingers etc. and then Grammy came over for the cake.

umm, I'm supposed to eat this?

umm, I'm supposed to eat this?

Just wait 'til 3 hours from now, Mom!

Just wait 'til 3 hours from now, Mom!

Late that night, just after I had crawled into bed myself (after 11:00), I could hear Charlotte restlessly stirring in her sleep. Next thing we know, she vomits up a huge stomachful of chicken fingers, noodles, cake and not-even digested green beans. Charming! All over herself, her hair, her pajamas, her bedding. Chris and I cleaned her up and he took her downstairs for a hair wash and a shower, while I stripped the bed and started washing laundry. Ugh. Peppermint-scented vomit. After she was cleaned up, we installed her in the TV room bed where she immediately fell back asleep, while I had to go back to the basement and supervise the now-psycho washing machine. A couple of hours later she got sick again, but not so much. Fortunately, I just had to change the top sheet, her pajama top and the pillow case – although the feather pillow she was on is now gross. What’s a little more laundry?! Finally wised up and put her on the outside edge of the bed with a basin nearby, so even though she did throw up a couple of more times, she got it all in the bucket. I was very concerned that I’d food poisoned everyone somehow, but it was just Charlotte feeling bad.

Three loads of laundry later, I finally joined Charlotte in the bed at about 5:00 a.m. Saturday, where we slept till about 11 (she missed dance class obviously). All day Saturday she was very tired, falling asleep no matter where she was parked. But fortunately, she kept down a small bowl of oatmeal and we even went out and got our Christmas tree (Chris didn’t want to, but Charlotte was adamant. I had to agree – if not today, there really would be no good day). We took the sled she’s outgrown just in case she was too tired to walk at the tree farm. Charlotte picked out a beautiful tree! It was pure kismet, we walked and considered a couple of possibles, then she points and says , “This one is our tree”. And she was right. She didn’t need the sled, though she did fall asleep on the way home. Chris went up to Newport to get some groceries because we knew there was a big storm forecasted. It has just stopped snowing now (13:00 Sunday).  Today Charlotte seems to be completely recovered, fingers crossed, although I will try to keep her quiet until we’re sure. Last time she got a stomach bug it was good 72 hours before she was totally better.

So to make a long story even longer, there’s a Santa Claus party this afternoon (maybe, if it hasn’t been cancelled) – perhaps we’ll walk downtown on our snowshoes! Now we’re going to start dealing with the Christmas tree, so I’d better find the tree stand and haul out the lights and decorations. Have a good rest of the weekend!

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