Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Feeling Five

This is a continuation of yesterday's post.  To read the previous story, click here

Who needs more than four hours of sleep?  Not this chick.  Apparently I function best with no rest and high blood sugar.  And a plastic bug in my hair, which has no bearing on my activity level but is Graham's newest way of showing his disdain love for me.

Early in the morning we headed off to church, with Cael sporting his Sunday best and a serious struggle with impatience as he attempted to argue his way into a piece of unfinished birthday cake for breakfast.  And lunch.  Or brunch.

I spent most of the day putting the finishing touches on the dinosaur cake.  The river the sprang from beneath the volcano developed quickly, as well as the oozing lava, several boulders and tufts of grass and even the "long neck" dinosaur. 

But when it came time to sculpt the pterodactyl, my lack of sleep caught up with me.  My fingers were completely inept and I kept creating small, colored triangular UFOs that would put Area 51 to shame.

Eventually, I had to practically trace the bird on the screen of my iPad and what resulted was closer to a warped bat than a pterodactyl, but the clock was ticking and I hadn't finished dinner.

The cold days we've been having, coupled with the crispy leaves escaping the trees, practically shouts for soup.  If you're me, you could eat soup every day and probably embrace a liquid diet with little protest.  If you're my husband, you have to "chew your food", which requires soup to tow the line of stew before it is worth your time.  Homemade Tomato, Ravioletti and Meatball soup is a decent compromise, but also the type of soup that has to develop flavor over the course of several hours in the same pan used to cook the 115 meatballs I'd made for the occasion. 

Why, oh why, did we not just order pizza and have store-bought cake?

I have come to the conclusion that I have an undiagnosable disorder in which I just can't help but to completely overdo everything.  Maybe it is perfectionism gone haywire, but it couldn't have struck at a busier time.  The cake was mercifully completed, but there were photos to take, dinner to make, and-- oh, no!  Did I ever wrap the gifts?

I took Cael outside for a brief photo shoot as I do annually on the boys' birthdays.  Aside from his requisite fake smile making several appearances, I got a number of cute portraits to clog up my computer and managed to tie up the remaining loose ends of the day.

When it was finally time to eat, we filled our stomachs with soup, bread and salad while Cael puzzlingly eyed the small pile of presents in front of the fireplace.

"Mommy, why aren't there very many presents?"

"I think they look like really good gifts, Cael."

"But Graham had so many more things!"

It's true.  Graham had a lot of little things to unwrap, because for Graham, the thrill is in seeing new things on which he can stake claim.  Cael, although his math skills are limited, is already keeping a running tally of who-got-more and whose-are-best that is cumulative over the course of his life.  And he thinks his list is always too small.

He was pleased, however, with his dinosaur toy and army tank.

He dressed up as a fireman and I considered the merit of an axe as a child's toy.

And when it was all done, he was still a bit confused until Joel attempted to put a blindfold on him to show him just one more thing.

Outside was a brand new ride-on toy, one intended for bigger kids, that Cael can drive and enjoy even when he's outgrown the Gator.  (Which Graham quickly understood was now his domain.)  Although Joel and I had read about it and locked it in the lowest speed setting just to be safe, we had no idea just how fast our son would be cruising the yard. 

Cael Earnhart, Jr. careened across the grass and whipped around corners with the finesse of a seasoned driver-- making artful 3-point turns and coming to a halt right in front of his shocked and wide-eyed family.

We should have stopped with the dinosaur.

We finished the night by singing "Happy Birthday" and eating a slice of the cake I'd devoted a ridiculous amount of time to perfecting, just to hack away at with a knife.  Seeing Cael's face as he spied the candles lit like fire atop the volcano made all of the hours worth the effort.

And this birthday wasn't yucky at all.


  1. You! Are! An! AMAZING! Mom! :) your kiddos are so blessed and you are an inspiration! :)
    Smiles and blessings,

    1. You are REALLY too kind! I'm blessed to have them but am always working on being more patient. I hope they remember the special things I did when they are older!

  2. Mary, the cake looks so lovely! Agree totally with the previous comment that you really are an inspiration!

    1. Thank you! But any mother who can get through the tough days and still lover her kids is an inspiration... and that means you, too! :)

  3. :) thank you! :)

  4. Whatever disease is that you have with perfectionism -- you aren't suffering alone - I'm the same way, ESPECIALLY with birthday parties!

    The cake looks fantastic. I love it!!


Leave your own "ism". Cael and Graham double-dog dare you.