Construction cake and a year in review

Our little man, our little Felix turns one today. And what a year it's been...

A year ago right now I was nearing the end of a difficult birth, the details of which I won't outline here. Let's just leave it at "difficult". At the same time we learned that he would be the first baby born in the newly constructed wing of a local hospital, which was followed by a surprising and slightly overwhelming bit of media attention. Now it's kind of nice though, his 15 minutes of (small) fame.

A year ago today I was lying in the hospital bed looking at my new baby, bruised like Robert DeNiro on the cover of "Raging Bull" (difficult birth remember), but my thoughts were back at home and with Sophie. She was a frail little bird then. Her regression had just run its course and she was (as we all were) quite shaken up. She lost all her words and her passion for life too it seemed. She spent most of her time curled up on my lap, me holding her close. And now we were going to bring a new baby into her life. To say I was worried would be an understatement. At that point we didn't have an official diagnosis yet (that would come a month later) but we knew something was very wrong. All those thoughts swarmed in my brain as I cuddled my new bundle and stroked his bruised little cheeks.

If I could send a note to that self sitting in that hospital room a year ago it would read something like this:

Hey- It will be ok. More okay than you can imagine now. Sophie will not be the same Sophie you remember, but she will get her spark back. You will find that there are many things she enjoys and many more things she can learn. She will show you that she wants to communicate and is very capable. And Felix? He will be fine. You know what I mean. He will develop in leaps and bounds and add his own mischievous spirit to the family. And while it will be hard and there will be moments you will feel like you are failing everything and everyone, the storm will pass and the sun will come out once again. You are strong and you will learn more about yourself in this next year than you probably have in your entire life before. There will be even more to learn of course. But I promise you, at the end of the year you will find your groove, and even have fun! (Most of the time ;))

I wish i had that note then.

Ok, enough with the heavy and onto the cake portion! Felix's a "man's man" and already showing an interest in all things with wheels, bonus points for size. I found some images of construction cakes and went from there. Now, this isn't a food blog and anyway, it really isn't rocket science. Here are the basic instructions, I trust you can figure it out.

1. Bake cake (I used a gluten-free cake mix, 2 boxes, each baked in own pan).

2. Frost cake (I made chocolate buttercream frosting, sandwiched the 2 cakes and frosted all around. Oh, I evened out the sides a bit with a serrated knife and sliced off the corners before frosting)
3. Make "dirt" (crush Oreos with cleaver or in food processor)

4. Assemble! (Wash all your vehicles. Create a construction scene. Also, I used "cookies and cream" chocolate bars to make the brick wall. Cool eh? I made it up myself people)
5. Ideally, you should pipe a "happy birthday" or something along those lines. I didn't because didn't have a suitable writing implement. It was a close-friends only party, I hope they understand. But- you should :)
And that is it! A year older and wiser and ready for the year ahead.
Bring it!



  1. That's an amazing cake, and Felix is a completely adorable little guy! And I love your letter to yourself. I might steal that idea for my blog at some point. You inspire me to find the cheery in each day.

    1. I do try to do that :) find the cheery in everyday. Felix's birthday is a very significant since his birth almost perfectly coincided with Sophie's diagnosis. The whole year him and I were growing and learning together. I think in that way he and I will always have that bond of that first year of his life and my first year as a "special-needs mom". I hope that makes sense, lol

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