For Isla, on the Event of Your Third Birthday
Good thing I’m on maternity leave. Isla wanted a doll cake for her birthday and let me just tell you. Doll cake does not make itself. After this abject failure in the birthday cake making department, I decided to try again. Using not one, but two recipes from the very cookbook I used for the doomed rainbow cake. I’m still not sure why I would do something so risky for my sweet Isla’s third birthday cake. Maybe I was thinking that my kids are just pretty forgiving at this age. Not to menton easy to impress. I really can’t say. What I can say is that decorating a cake, um, well, pretty much EVERYTHING, is a lot more difficult than those youtube videos would have you believe.
This entire endeavor was a hot mess, right up until the very end. But somehow, it came together just enough. The look on Isla’s face when she laid her eyes on it was priceless. My sweet Isla. She doesn’t ask for much, but I knew she wanted this cake and a plastic tiara for her birthday. I was happy to oblige. Her uncle and grandpa came over for her “family party”. At dinner, we went around the table and each said something that we liked about Isla or that was memorable about her 2nd year on the planet.
After cake and presents, we finished assembling the bunk bed in Emmett and Isla’s room. No one was ready to sleep on the top bunk so they slept together on the bottom. Emmett on the bottom bunk and Isla next to him on top of her crib mattress. Paul and I listened to the whispers between the two of them from the next room until their little voices turned into the heavy breath of sleep. She was so happy; and grateful. I was more proud of her than ever.
For the cake, I made Swiss Meringue Buttercream (recipe here), a first for me. I highly recommend it. Because it doesn’t rely on copious amounts of powdered sugar for structure, it’s less sweet than regular buttercream. Also, it’s very stable and easy to work with. For the cake, I made a classic yellow cake from this book, which by the way, is not the reason the rainbow cake went so wrong. That was all me.