*This is a sponsored post. It’s about cake – about celebrating Miss 11’s birthday and random things tweens do – apparently. Oh and me baking Red Velvet cupcakes…so read on if you’re interested in finding out how I didn’t fail at baking. Seriously.
I’ve got a tween – a pre-teen, an 11 year old who is in her final year of primary school this year. Oh my goodness, that sounds scary and so surreal! She will be in high school next year! Where did the time go?! If you read my “Ode To My Girl”, you know that her birthday has just passed, and yes, like every other birthday, celebrations spans a whole week. Not on purpose. But, thankfully, instead of having big parties, it gets easier and more intimate as they grow older. Their very first party was when they turned 4 (I think?), then they get one each year until they get to prep – which is their first year in primary school. I’ve only ever done this outside, at another venue because the thought of having over 20 children in my house, running around, and then having to clean up is just not an idea I associate as fun. Once the girls grade 1 level, it’s usually a cosier affair with two choices – have a day out with me doing what they want to do – this could range from high tea, lunch, shopping, anything basically and it’s just me and that child. No other child. Or have an intimate gathering with their very close friends for a teeny tiny party.
Last year, for her 10th birthday, Miss 11 chose to have an intimate gathering with 2 of her very close friends. We had a day at home – thank goodness it was during the holidays – with cupcakes, a special movie at home and some “girly” time with her girlfriends and Miss 9 (yes, they usually ride on each other’s coat tails!). We also do the traditional family thing with the dinner at a place they pick (lucky kids!) and this year Miss 11 chose to have her birthday lunch at the French Brasserie (lucky chick!).
Another tradition I started are the cakes – they get to choose what cakes they want and this year, Miss 11 wanted Red Velvet cake. SAY WHAT? The last time we had that was thanks to my cousin, who by the way is an awesome baker. She baked some gorgeous red velvet cake & cupcakes for Master 7’s birthday when we were in Singapore. Umm…how am I supposed to live up to that?! I can bake a cake but to have a something that they can actually compare to? That’s a huge pressure on me – someone who prefers the easy way out. And even after receiving the recipe from my cousin I balked at the amount of ingredients it required.
It wasn’t until I went to the recent Kids Business Social Mums event that I found out there was another much easier recipe to create Red Velvet cakes – well, more like cupcakes all thanks to Philadelphia Cheese who was one of the sponsors there. I had a look at the recipe card they provided and the fact that they used an already ready made cream cheese frosting sold me on the idea that “yes, I can do this”. And…I did! I baked the cupcakes the night before her birthday. Good thing I had a stand-alone mixer (no it’s not a KitchenAid), so all I had to do really was to mix all the ingredients according to the recipe card. Took me about 10 minutes or so (or less?) to get the cake mix ready (can you tell I’m not a pro at baking?) and in their cases ready to bake. 15 minutes later the red velvet cupcakes were ready – and yes they did smell delicious.
In fact, I just had to do a test run just to see if I would die from food poisoning you know? I know self praise is not praise but, they were delicious even before I had the frosting on. I had to hide them in a large container before going to bed so that the kids won’t eat them the next morning before I had a chance to ice them. It took me about 5 minutes to ice the cupcakes, which I did just before we presented them to Miss 11 – really simple when all I needed to do was use a butter knife and whip it up on top of each cupcake. To make them look a bit more “presentable” and a little bit “posh”, I grated some cooking chocolate on top. And…voila!
Want the recipe? Head on here
Miss 11 was happy she got her red velvet cake (ok, so they’re not exactly cakes but still) and Miss 9 who hates cream cheese literally scoffed the cupcakes down even when she had thrown a tantrum before I iced them saying she hates cream cheese. Haha…she ate her words! In this case…cake.
So what did we end up doing with her friends? Seeing that Miss 11 is older now, her choice of super close friends are pretty limited. She knows who she loves, who means a lot to her. We ended up going to the movies. Village cinemas have this Kids Flicks thing during the weekends for $6.00 per person – cheap right?! Good thing they were showing “Rise of the Guardians” something I don’t mind watching either. Next, lunch – TGIFridays was the easy choice as it was nearby and she loves the food there. We also did the random girly stuff girls do – apparently because I didn’t know that’s what they do. They…wait for it…tried on clothes just for fun and took photos in the fitting room. REALLY? It was pretty funny though. They also dragged me into Equip and tried on sunnies – just for fun. And what’s fun without taking selfies of each other right? It was pretty hilarious seeing the reaction of the sales girl. She ignored us, but didn’t look too thrilled either. But then again I suppose this might be a regular occurrence with tweens and teens? I don’t know. I don’t remember doing that.
I have to admit that I had a lot of fun with Miss 11 and her friends. Sometimes letting it go and just going with the flow, living in the moment can be refreshing, especially when you learn things you never knew were happening at school…hmmm…
How did you used to celebrate your birthday? Or if you have a tween, what do you normally do? Would love some ideas for next time.