Rainbow Cake

rainbow cake

It has been another one of those unexpectedly busy weeks where, despite trying to do very little above and beyond what was necessary, the hours have flown by at a very alarming rate.

The week started with us making a rainbow cake.  As some of you may recall, the wee boy has been talking about this for quite a while now and I had promised him, in the half term holidays, that we would give it a go, little realising that the holidays coincided with our lovely Charlotte’s birthday.  So, we made her a rainbow cake for her birthday.

When I say we, I am being generous.  The wee boy did a little stirring, a lot more licking, and when the violet cake fell apart – you’ll notice there are only six colours and not seven – he did a great deal of ‘quality controlling’.  However, it finally got made and presented, covered in icing, silver balls, coloured sugar, and love.

Interestingly, when the cake was cut, none of us, for one second, thought there was anything unusual about having a large, six layered slice of special birthday cake, despite each slice being absolutely ginormous.  Oh no, instead, we valiantly waded through the layers, stopping regularly for a swig of tea, and then more tea, until the wee boy, with still a mountain of cake to go, declared he’d had enough.

There was still plenty of cake left on all plates, but we trundled off on a dog walk, convinced that we would make room for the final part of the slice on our return.  Imagine then, our genuine surprise when himself came home and cut himself half a slice.

Just three colours.

*metaphorical lightbulb switches on*

Himself and I don’t do Valentine’s Day.  Mainly because neither of us are comfortable with the commercial concept, but also because we both believe that love should be given all year round.  That said, I would never judge anyone who does wish to engage with Valentine’s Day.  It’s a personal thing.  However, I do try and let people we love, know that is how we feel, so was brought to tears later on in the week when, flying hither and thither, the wee boy and I were on the telephone to son #1 and he finished the conversation with ‘love you’.  Similarly, when the wee one telephoned son #1 again, he left the conversation with ‘lots of love’.

I cannot put into words just how much this makes me glow inside.  I’m more proud that my boys can express their love for each other and us, than any bunch of flowers or heart embossed card and hope that nothing and no-one manages to crush that piece of perfection they both have within them.




Winter Warmer

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One of the many wonderful things about having a dog, and there are many, is the excuse it provides for the whole family to don wellington boots and partake in a Sunday constitutional.

Of course there is a small amount of mental preparation that goes on prior to said constitutional consisting mainly of me talking about us all going on a walk together, for at least 24 hours beforehand.  This ensures that all are aware, if not completely accepting, that we will be ‘taking air’ with the dog in the very near future.

Sometimes I have a slight memory lapse of what needs to occur and spring the ‘family walk with the dog’ on them out of the blue, without prior warnings, hints or general blitherings.  When this happens I am often met with looks of astonishment, confusion and sometimes disbelief. Despite the fact that we have had the beautiful Billie for over seven months now and she does, in the main, go out every day.

I refer to this as the mental dance of the dog walk.  In fact it wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest if Debussy wrote a piece of music about such a thing, as I remember as a child going through the very same moves the boys now display.  (Why Debussy you may ask?  Well, he wrote a whole series of piano pieces for his children to help them learn the piano, all of which reflected what they were interested in, and their characteristics).

However, yesterday all went according to plan and there wasn’t a grumble to be heard.  Bedecked in layers, we trudged off into the no man’s land between city and countryside to be met by rays emitting from that golden globe in the sky that has been very remiss of late.  It was absolutely glorious.  Moreover, Billie could go bonkers without recriminations and the boys began to understand the joys of owning a pair of wellington boots.  It was, without a word of exaggeration, very boggy.

Now I don’t know about you, but I am a great believer in having something warm to look forward to on a return from a walk, so we all agreed that a hot chocolate was the order of the day.  It is, by far, my favourite winter post walk drink especially when made with real chocolate.  And as easy as you like to make.

Simply pour into a pan the necessary amount of milk and break up a large bar of chocolate.  Plain is best.  Allow the chocolate to slowly melt into the milk, whisking occasionally to ensure it is all mixed together.  Wait for the chocolate to become hot but not boiling, then take off the heat and pour.  For that added extra treat we also broke into our Christmas Panettone which is delicious dipped into the hot chocolate.

Nothing quite warms the soul like sharing hot chocolate soaked cake with the ones you love.