"Mama, I want a PINK strawberry cake with PINK strawberry frosting for my birthday!"
I couldn't WAIT to make it for her. I had visions of perfectly piped roses, swooping buttercream swaths, fluffy pink layers of cake, fresh strawberry filling and three pink birthday candles to top it off. I pored over pictures of beautiful cakes and even sketched out a version of The Perfect Pink Cake on paper. The cake recipe was one I'd made numerous times before and knew would be delicious. The frosting was one I'd perfected just a few weeks before.
This is quite possibly the prettiest cake on the planet. Leave it to Martha...
Since we were celebrating a few days after Thanksgiving, we would be at my parent's home in Florida. In my suitcase I packed 8 different frosting tips (each handpicked for a different purpose), a rose nail, silvery candy pearls and piping bags. I sent my mom a detailed shopping list of ingredients to buy ahead of time, in case the store were too crowded or closed to buy what I needed the weekend after Thanksgiving. I. Was. Prepared.
A last minute grocery trip, disposable cake pans, a fussy baby, humid Florida air, uneven layers, persnickety buttercream, and not enough time. It was, officially, the ugliest cake I've ever made.
I was heartbroken. Disappointed. Frustrated.
The leaning tower of Pink Cake Wreck.
And then she saw it. Eyes wide and smile even wider, she reached a finger out to steal a taste of frosting and then extended her arms for a hug. As she snuggled into the crook of my neck, she whispered, "Mama, I love my pink cake."
A few days later her Bompa would ask her, "What was your favorite thing about your birthday?"
Her answer? "Eating cake!" Mission accomplished.
Happy 3rd Birthday to my sweet, bright, chatty, loving, curious girl!