I've been making a Tinkerbell cake this week for my friend's daughter's birthday party:
I had known for about six weeks that I needed to make the cake. I used a madeira cake that lasts a fortnight so, theoretically, I could have baked and iced the cake last weekend. I could have spent the last month making sugarpaste decorations, they last such a long time. So why did I start the cake at 9 o'clock on Wednesday night and then stay up until 1am on Friday morning decorating it?! What's more, when I should have started baking the cake after work on Wednesday, I made some Cherry Menlove cheat's mince pies instead!
I frustrate myself so much leaving everything to the last minute. I am the same in every aspect of my life and whilst I know that I put myself under unnecessary stress, I can't seem to change it. It comes up in every appraisal at work. My boss, kindly, tells me that it's against my character-type to plan in advance, so I need to work really hard at it. I agree. The truth is that I can't get motivated to do things until the last minute and I work best under pressure.
I am pleased with the cake even though I spent the whole of Friday exhausted and bleary-eyed.
It's a simple two-tier madeira cake with vanilla buttercream and strawberry jam filling. I was asked to provide a three-tiered cake but decided to use a bigger board and decorate that rather than a third tier (it's an 8" cake with a 5" tier - that's a lot of cake!).
I made all of the decorations from sugarpaste or flowerpaste (the figures are plastic) and the water is blue-coloured buttercream. There are two Tinks (?) on it - I was only going to use one (which makes sense to me) but Andrew assured me that a 6-year old little girl would rather see as many Tinks as possible than just one, however unrealistic.
He was right - I dropped the cake off on Friday night and my friend's daughter had waited up to see the cake. Her face when we took it out of the box was an absolute picture. She was delighted. It made the stress and the exhaustion worthwhile. I crawled home, ate noodles and fell asleep in front of a DVD.
So, Cherry Menlove. I saw her mince pies in the Hobbycraft magazine but then discovered Cherry's blog accidentally a couple of week's ago whilst looking for blanket stitch tutorials. Her blog is so cheesy and cheerful - I love it. I thought I was the most shameless Pollyanna but she clearly beats me hands down. I have a little bit of a girl crush.
All weekend I have been sleepy and craving cosiness (how on earth I used to go out til the early hours of the morning three nights on the trot at the weekend I do not know). My mum and sis picked me up on their way to Milton Keynes yesterday afternoon and we went to the little Christmas section that has been set up outside John Lewis. It is lovely for children; they can see Santa and look at the cute moving Christmassy scenes. There are loads of fairy lights and a very pretty, proper, carousel.
We took my niece on and she loved it. We sat in a little Cinderella coach and she put her bunny, Joseph, on her knee for the ride.
(the red cups are back, hurrah!) and wandered around one or two shops. It was crazy busy (Christmas madness) but we had nothing specific to buy. I did pick up a few fun decorations from Paperchase and swooned over the gorgeous babushka stationery. It's a good job I don't go to the shops very often, I could have spent a fortune!
Today we're just having a quiet day at home but popping out to the garden centre in a moment for a little mooch. By 3pm we'll be curled up on the sofa with an old film on the box - can't wait. Might even make myself a snowball!
Hope everyone's having a good weekend - isn't the weather Christmassy! Cold and foggy... switch on your fairy lights and get cosy.