Accio Jacksons!

An 11-inch holly blog with a phoenix feather core


by Rebecca on 2010-12-21

(Today has been a challenging day with Emily, one of those days where she does the opposite of whatever I want and throws my hair dryer attachment into the toilet for good measure. So, maybe writing this post will remind me that there are a few bright shining moments in motherhood.)

A few weeks ago, I had a morning full of time with nothing to do, and we were going a bit stir crazy. I remembered that there was a coffee cake recipe on the back of a yeast packet that Iʼd been meaning to try for a while. As our luck would have it, we were also out of cereal and needed something for breakfast the next day. So, several needs collided to generate the idea that Emily and I could bake a cake together.

I was kind of nervous about how this would go, but the recipe didnʼt have eggs in it, and I resigned myself to the idea that any size mess would be worth it if Emily had fun in the kitchen. We pulled up a chair to the island and I gave specific instructions not to make any sudden movements. I gave her a whisk and a bowl to play with while I worked on the mise en place (doesnʼt that sound fancy?) Thatʼs probably the key to success in cooking with kids: get it all set up beforehand! So, with about 5 minutes of prep, we were on our way. I read the recipe out loud and Emily would dump the required item into her bowl. And then she would whisk the heck out of it. Iʼd read the next ingredient, and she would dump and whisk. With this step repeated about 10 times, we suddenly had the makings for a nice coffee cake.

It was a really fun morning for us, except for the part where Emily fell into the trash can. (I donʼt even know how to explain how that happened, but rest assured that I had just changed the bag, so she didnʼt emerge covered in potato peels and old mail.) I later realized that we took twice as long and made twice the mess but we had twice the fun making our little cake. Hereʼs what we came up with and hereʼs what Emily thought of it.

A coffee cake

Emily with her cake

Emily eating her cake