Kim's Kitchen

Lemon Cakes

The Eldest turned 12 last week, and it’s a custom in our family to choose what kind of cake one would like to celebrate.  Of course all birthday cakes need to be reasonable.  Like the recipe had better be in my Betty Crocker cookbook or forget about it, for I’m no gourmet chef.

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I love Betty Crocker.  My grandma gave this cookbook to me at my Wedding Shower.  A most sensible gift.

Now Lemon Cakes are not in my Betty Crocker cookbook, but because I love my daughter very much and was feeling very sacrificial,* I went out of my way to look up a recipe online.  I printed the first recipe that didn’t have any obscure ingredients in it.  You know, like butter milk.  Who has that on hand?

What I found was this, so I went at it.  If you look at that recipe, however, you’ll notice that it’s ridiculous because all the measurements are in Tablespoons, which is stupid.  I can’t be trusted to count out 10 Tablespoons accurately with 7 loud children running around and begging to lick a beater.  But then, if you look even closer at the recipe, you’ll notice that it requires a 7-inch bundt cake pan.  Who has that?  Not me, so I had to double the recipe, which is actually a good thing, as it means more lemon cake to eat.

In the end though, out came my trusty and sensible Betty Crocker cookbook anyway because it has an Equivalent Measures Chart in it.  Just how many cups is 20 Tablespoons of sugar?  I found out that 1 cup has 16 Tablespoons, which leaves 4 Tablespoons left over for 1/4 cup.  Whew, that’s a lot of math.

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This child is helping me by pointing out the Equivalent Measures Chart for all my Tablespoons.

Well, after zesting and squeezing lemons, I threw it in the oven.

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Someone was playing Uno while watching me zest and squeeze lemons.

When I took it out of the oven, here’s how it looked.

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And then here it is inverted on the cake platter…

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And after sprinkling it with powdered sugar and placing store-boughten candies on it…

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Missing 10 candles.

And finally with all the candles and most of the children…

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Happy Birthday!

 

 

*This was not very sacrificial of me at all.  I love lemons so much that I always have them on hand.  I mean, you never know when you might need a Lemon Martini.

 

 

 

 

Motherhood & Parenting

It’s My Birthday: My Mother’s Birth Story

Today I turn 36.

 

I’m sure of this because I asked my husband, and he’s good at math.  I remembered I was born in 1982; he commented it was 2018; I said I couldn’t do the math, and he said, “You’re 36.”

 

Well, and here I was thinking that I was older.

 

Because birthing stories are never boring, I decided to call my parents to find out about mine, and my dad answered.  I asked him what he remembered about my birth.  The first thing out of his mouth was, “Well, there were five deer standing on the north side of the driveway.  It was snowy.”  And that was it.

 

So I asked my mother how it went.  You see, I am the Firstborn, which is always exciting because as you know, mothers and fathers have absolutely no clue what’s going on with Baby Number One.  And apparently I also offered some excitement for the little, rural hospital where I was born too.  For nobody else was having babies at the time, and those nurses were all bored and probably standing around the front desk smoking cigs.  In fact, I was the first baby of the year born there, and I had my photo taken for the newspaper.  This is my special Claim to Fame.

 

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This is the actual newspaper clipping of my mother holding me.

 

My mother said that she and my dad went to a New Year’s Eve party a few days before I was born, where everyone kept asking her, “When are you gonna have that baby?”  Her response was, “Tonight!”  Well, that didn’t happen, but on the morning of the 2nd she awoke with a pain.  So, at 8am she waddled out to the car and off they drove, apparently right by five deer in the snow.

 

Now as my mother was saying this, I could hear my dad in the background adding, “That car was a 1980 AMC Eagle.  Silver, and quite a fancy one.”  Then my mother added, “Well, and we needed that car like we needed another hole in our heads.”  And he responded with, “It was one of the first four-wheel-drive cars made.  And was a good one.”

 

Anyway, I was born at 6:28pm, and my mother was happy because I was normal.  Evidently she was pretty worried about that because I wouldn’t come out at the end of all that labor, so the doctor had to use some scary-looking tool – a forceps – to yank me out, which left a scrape alongside my upper right cheekbone.  (Look very closely at the above picture for the scab.)  So, besides my head being cone-shaped, which took her a little by surprise, she was thankful and happy to learn that scrapes do heal.

 

And so here I am, 36 years later, mostly normal, even though I was bottle fed and diapered with cloth and safety pins, which my mother said was “crappy.”  (They couldn’t afford the fancy disposable diapers.)

 

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This is my dad holding me.  Notice his sweet hair.  It was permed.  Now that’s getting your priorities straight – nice cars and sweet perms, but no disposable diapers.

 

Happy Birthday to me.  And Happy Birthday to St. Therese the Little Flower; she was also born on January 2, but in 1873.

 

St. Therese, pray for us.