Sunday, January 11, 2009
while up north for the holidays, my mom had a milestone birthday (she's not the type, i'm sure, to care if i mentioned which one, but you know...) i'm rarely around for her birthday, so i wanted to take the opportunity to make her a cake. i had a big idea for a far more complicated very personalized cake, but every single person i told paused, then said: "oh. hmm." turns out that translates as "i'm pretty sure you could do that complicated cake, but that in the process, you will become a stressed out crazy person who is insufferable to be around." turns out they (husband, sisters) were all likely correct. so, plan B.
we were experiencing record snowfall during our visit. as in, 33 (or more) inches of snow in one month, the most ever on record. that in combination with temperatures such as 15 below zero (yes, farenheit!) kept us from leaving the house more than once a week or so. i grew up in this northern extreme climate, but this was just ridiculous. so rather than fight it -- my sister decreed that no one was allowed to complain about the weather unless they were actually outside in it -- i thought we'd embrace it as inspiration for the cake.
the hardest part of this cake was making the royal icing snowflakes, and honestly they weren't that hard other than that they were very prone to breaking. predicting this (wow, i'm a genius!), i made about three times what i thought i'd need. turns out i only broke about half. um... success!
sadly, you can't see it in the photos, but larry wired up some LEDs to go under the glass cake plate. they were six independently-controlled strings he set up in a wave effect that looked like the light in blustery, blowing snow. it was really impressive and went perfectly with the snowy theme. always fun when our interests can combine into one project. :)
i think perhaps the snow cake didn't appease the gods of winter. as it turns out, we may have angered them: the day of the party, yet more bad weather moved in, and half the guests couldn't make it. and in fact, *we* couldn't really it the 10 miles to my aunt's house, so we changed the location at the last minute. (as a kid, half my winter birthday parties we canceled, so i think a half-cancellation is probably considered a success with those odds?)
my mom seemed a bit "who, me?" regarding the cake (insisting i not go to any trouble, surprised i was bothering to cover it with fondant). well mom, for you i'd happily make a cake as big as a real snowdrift. okay, not that twelve foot high monstrosity on your patio this year, but you know what i mean...