Even though the Bear's birthday was a whole week ago, his "kid party" was today. I'm so glad we waited. He wanted a rainforest theme, and if we'd done his party last week, we would've had banana chips and animal crackers and that would have been the end of it.
Instead, now that I've finished grading my mega-pile of essays, we actually had time to decorate and play with the idea. Here's the rainforest wall the boys created (with lots of involvement from their dad).
The closeup view is much lusher.
The cake was chocolate, courtesy of Betty Crocker, baked as 425 degrees because I'm still harried enough to be a total nitwit. The buttercream frosting was luscious enough to mostly mask the cake's slight dryness around the edges. The unnatural green hues were a pretty effective distraction, too.
The cake is supposed to represent a rainforest. Here's the Amazon as seen from the crocodile's perspective.
Discerning viewers may have already noted that the animals look suspiciously like the plastic critters in the Fischer-Price zoo set.
I know a mother who can create wonders from fondant. She could produce a cake like this without any plastic at all. Okay, so she's a professional cake maker. I honor her skills. I'm also perfectly satisfied with the creativity that my little family and I muster.
We played animal charades and had a "jaguar treasure hunt" through our neighborhood despite snow flurries. The parents had a glass of white wine or a cup of espresso (or both, as required to adjust their nerves). No presents (the Bear decided to instead collect food for our town's perpetually empty food pantry). No clowns. No Chuck E. Cheese. And still - everyone got what they came for.
I'll admit, though, that with thirteen rambunctious kids in the mix, the wine really didn't hurt.