Little Miss Chatterbox had big plans for her First Communion cake. She drew them up on paper (which was actually quite impressive!) right down to how many layers, what colors, type of frosting, and cake flavors. It was to be three tiered, each tier with fondant roses around the outside. The top would have Chatterbox kneeling in her dress, receiving communion from Jesus-all made out of fondant. There would be a plaque on the middle tier with her name and the date and lilies to represent Easter. The bottom tier would have a seashell, to represent her baptism. (She received her First Holy Communion on Easter which was also her baptismal anniversary) It sounded wonderful but not quite realistic. I reminded her that making things from fondant take a long time and that we would be busy getting ready for the big day plus Easter. So I looked on-line and found a cake topper of Jesus giving communionto a little girl. I was so excited to find it! It took a bit of effort to persuade Chatterbox to pass up her fondant idea but she finally did.
As the day came closer and closer and the to-do list grew longer and longer, I wondered how I was going to get everything done. Then Chatterbox offered to decorate the cake herself. What a great idea! So I baked the cake (lemon cake with raspberry mousse filling) and frosted it. Then we made the fondant. It was made from marshmallows and came from a recipe that I found on-line. It was not sturdy and every rose we made started melted back into a ball of fondant goo. "It needs more powdered sugar!" suggested Chatterbox. So she kneaded in more and more. It was getting a little better, but still not good enough for roses. I was ready to give up. It was already late in the day on Holy Saturday and we had so much to do to get ready for Easter! But Chatterbox was determined to make this work. She played around with it and made a little rosette. "Look at this, Mom! A little rose! We can just put these around the tiers!" It was a great idea and I was so relieved. We started working together on making the rosettes when she decided that she didn't want the roses to be only pink and white (which was my suggestion). She wanted dark pink, light pink, yellow and purple. "Easter colors! Spring colors! My favorite colors!" I gave her an undiscerning look. "It is my cake, after all." Okay, okay.
We colored more fondant. The kitchen was a huge mess which attracted the boys, naturally. To them, big mess equals big fun. Chatterbox told them they were too small to make rosettes but gave them a little bit of fondant to play with. This made Mr. Tickle very happy. But to Mr. Funny, it was a challenge. He tried to make a rosette but it was huge. "See? I told you that you are too small to help with the roses. Just play with Mr. Tickle." Mr. Funny didn't seem to hear Chatterbox's remark. He made one rose after another, learning from the last and making improvements on the next, until finally he made the perfect little rosette.
He was so proud of himself and we were proud of him too! Chatterbox hugged him and apologized for not having more faith in his abilities (her words, not mine). Then she put him in charge of the purple. It was great to get help! With the three of us making the roses, it moved along pretty quickly. Chatterbox carefully placed them in a pattern along the cake. I truly loved the colors and was so glad that Chatterbox decided on them. We placed the cake topper on top and put on the chocolate chalice. The finished cake looked beautiful.
This ranked pretty high on my Mom-o-Meter of proud moments. Here's what I was proud of:
1. Chatterbox coming up with her own design
2. Chatterbox going with the flow and not getting angry about the fondant not working.
3. Chatterbox dealing with a cranky, exasperated mother and helping me keep my cool by finding a solution to our rose problem.
4. Chatterbox being nice to her brothers when they asked to help.
5. Mr. Funny's determination on figuring out how to make a fondant rosette.
6. How nicely and quietly Mr. Tickle played with his fondant and left us to finish our job.
And last but certainly not least,