Stacked, birthday parties and roses

Nothing to waffle about

For CLICK: Stacked, I dug into my archives and pulled out this picture of waffles that Medha made me take in the first week of 2009. She had made breakfast and wanted a picture of her waffles, all stacked, with a dab of butter and as she poured syrup over them. "Just like in the magazines, Mumma!" she said. She was mighty thrilled with it. So off it goes to the Jugalbandits as my judge's entry for CLICK.

Medha celebrated her golden birthday earlier this month: 11 on the 11th. She was super-excited about it and, unlike last year, wanted to celebrate with a birthday party. I prefer to keep her parties small and simple. That means not more than 5 girls in all and no sleepover. I won the first battle but lost the second. She wanted a repeat of the Backyard Campout Party but gave in to roasting marshmallows and making s'mores for dessert instead.

We baked a carrot cake from The Joy of Cooking and then quibbled over what kind of frosting: cream cheese or sprinkled sugar. No prizes for guessing which one I was leaning towards! When it came to making the cream cheese frosting, she realized how much easier it is to simply sprinkle the sugar over the cake and promptly presented it as her idea. I pulled out all the colored sugars and sprinkles I had and we used them to decorate her birthday cake. I then displayed great creativity when I used a metal skewer and wrote Happy Birthday, Medha on the cake with great flourish.

She was somewhat happy. I think. We covered it carefully and left it on the table on an increasingly hot evening. Never do that because, you see, powdered sugar dissolves into the cake. Like so:


This carrot cake was the second best carrot cake I have ever had. After much giggling and talking in sentences where every third word is "like" and every other phrase is "you know", the girls went with me to Louisville's Street Faire for some fun. They jumped, they flipped and came away with their faces painted.

We had a minor family emergency which led to the cancellation of the marshmallow roasting session; but it's generally been agreed that we will do it another time before summer is done. They played Guitar Hero and ate ice-cream without any complaints. The next morning they made some crafty mementoes to take away with them.

(She is the teeniest of the lot but my driveway has a reasonably steep slope making her look even smaller.)

Thanks to The Cooker for this fantastic idea! The girls first painted and decorated 6in terracotta pots and then potted sun-loving annuals in them. To make these, you need:

  • 6in terracotta pots and saucers
  • Several bottles of bright paints (I bought acrylic paints)
  • Foam stickers, buttons, dragonfly charms and similar embellishments
  • Hot glue gun
  • Pebbles to line the hole in the pot, or not
  • Compost and top soil
  • Annuals like marigolds, salvia, phlox (more shade than sun), verbena and any other flowers that thrive in the sun.


  1. Turn on some music, anything but Taylor Swift.
  2. Paint the pots first and allow them to dry.
  3. Decorate the pots.
  4. Plant the flowers.
  5. Watch their faces light up at every stage.
In lieu of birthday gifts, Medha asked her friends if they could sponsor our friends John and Lisa for their Avon Walk for Breast Cancer, if they were so inclined. Or donate to a charity of their choice. John and Lisa walked 39 miles this past weekend and were only $2 short of their goal of $1,800 each.

Medha declared this to be the best birthday she has ever had! In many ways, it probably is! And rightly so. For golden birthdays come only once in a lifetime.

Oh. See that climbing rose bush in the picture of the girls holding their pots? Yup, I made gulkand. There's a real recipe, after all. Over on The Daily Tiffin.

14 comments:

Anita said...

Oh, I didn't know about golden birthdays, and now I can't have one! :(

It does look and sound like an awesome birthday party! You are a terrific mom!

And there is a recipe here, well...one click away, but still! :-D

Mints! said...

Lovely picture for click. I am sure Medha had lots of fun.
painted pot with annuals is my kind of party favor :)

Aparna said...

So she (and you) had lots of fun. I especially liked the cake.
I have to make one with "lots of buttercream" and "no weird flavours like orange!"
Luckily (for me) my daughter feels she's too grown up for parties and is just having a few friends over.
The deadlien is sunday. :)

Srivalli said...

Looks great manisha..I liked the cake and the pots too..thanks for the ideas will try to see if my daughter likes to do it!

Pelicano said...

Happy Birthday to Medha! Sounds like a splendid time, and the flower-pots are certainly colourful and lovely.

I checked out your gulkand post- very nice! And I bet the colour is deep!

I don't have roses anymore... :-( I had a damask ("Celsiana"), a cabbage, a moss, a gallica, and a rugosa when I was in my teens...when I moved out in my early 20's my mother, uh...they disappeared. :-) Then I had 8 white albas in Kewaunee that I had to leave behind...and now I'm back home again (of course) and I'm sure that she'd refuse as she hates roses... all of this is trivial ramblings, but: I am green with envy that you have your own yard to grow a rose.

Ashwini said...

Wow Beautiful photos. Lovely click. That looks like fun..I am sure Medha must have enjoyed to her fullest.

TKW said...

I love the picture of the flip!!

Carrot cake is my absolute favorite. Mmmmmm...cake...

Vani said...

That's a nice party activity idea! Loved the picture of the flip too. Happy Birthday to your daughter!

Nirmala said...

Thats a load of fun filled b'day! Yeah golden b'days ae so cherishable. Wishing Medha a wonderful belated b'day and many moe happy returns of the same. May all her dreams come true! The cake looks pretty with all thats colorful sprinkles. The craft pots are also a good idea. I can give a try to such ideas when my kids start demanding a b'day party ;)

Susan from Food Blogga said...

Ooh, that top pic is luscious!

Shilpa said...

Thats a cute birthday cake Manisha. I am sure Medha loved it.

bee said...

dear medha, belated birthday wishes,sweetheart. that was a thoughtful and wonderful "gift" from you and your friends for a great cause!!!

Alpa said...

Hi Manisha, it's been a minute, but I wanted to say it looks like they had a ball! I am loving those pots they decorated, what a great idea. Love that cake too, was sad to see the sugar moistened. That is so wonderful that she is so young but yet so generous that she wanted donations made to the charity. You've the bestest bestest daughter :)

xoxo
-alpa

anubhavati said...

Hi Manisha,

Belated Bday wishes to your daughter on her golden bday!!! First time on your blog and it really rocks....Do visit my blogsite when you find time.
Rgds,

Shobha