Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake!

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

I adore birthdays.  If I’m honest, the love started with my own birthday, but there’s something so joyful about being able to celebrate how much you love someone {just like Valentine’s Day, but we can get into that next month!}.  Not everyone feels so strongly, in fact, I think for most of the ten years we’ve been married, I’ve been more excited about my husband’s birthday than he has.

If I’m honest, I don’t remember too many details of our birthday celebrations when I was growing up, but I do remember the moments that made me feel so special.  My very first, and favorite, friends birthday party was at a pizza place with lots of Kindergarten friends and my family.  And, when I turned 18, my mom had two presents waiting in each of my 9 periods at school – one gift for each year {I’ll tell you this – wanna make sure your teenager spends a day feelings celebrated?  This is a good one!}.

When I was a nanny, I quickly realized that the family I worked with had this birthday thing figured out.  I’d always loved a good birthday, but they showed me how to really do it up.  Not really anything that big, just lengthening the celebration.  Now I knew you could celebrate birthday week, or even birthday month if you really wanted to.  One cake?  Why stop there?  You could celebrate your day over one meal, but there are birthday breakfasts, birthday lunches and birthday dinners, not to mention birthday coffee dates – why choose just one?  I loved how they celebrated the moment the birthday girl/boy woke up with breakfast in their room, starting the day out feeling so special is something I wanted my own kids to experience, so we’ve made it a tradition.

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

I think making your children feel celebrated is an incredible gift you can give, so I may, or may not, take it to extremes from time to time.  Sometimes, my ideas for their birthday parties become all-consuming, but they’re always SO much fun, I have a hard time avoiding that rabbit hole.

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

What’s so much fun about celebrating is that it’s contagious and even my husband is catching on to how much fun this is!  One of the easy ways I think you can celebrate, is birthday cake.  I LOVE a good cake and I really love making them from scratch.  I promise it’s not as hard as it sounds and some of my favorite cakes are those that had the easiest decorating involved.  I’m talking plain white frosting between the layers – nice and simple.

I use one website for all of my cake recipes, because I’ve had great success with pretty much all of those I’ve tried – and she gives some great tips within her instructions for someone just learning.

Even though I want my kids to grow up remembering home-made birthday cake, colors and decor of their choosing, I love a good bakery cake and cupcake too!  Kowalski’s and Byerly’s both do first birthday smash cakes for free and I melt over cake and cupcakes from Wuollet’s {if you don’t know this local bakery – get there, and fast! SO good!}.  In fact, I always end up with a 7-inch white on white cake from Wuollet’s for my own birthday every year and, while I am willing to share,  I do my best to make sure I get most of it!

Here are a few of my favorite cakes with links to the recipes.

A surprise cake is a ton of fun and kids think it’s amazing.  For this one, you make cake balls first then cover them with fresh batter in cake pans and bake again. I’ve always wanted to try this piñata cake too.

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

I had always wanted to make the rainbow cake that’s all over Pinterest – this recipe has fantastic flavor and is good enough to use as a white cake too.  If you want vibrant colors, always use gel colors {you can find them at Michael’s}.  We did a combined party for my girls when they turned 2 and 4, and went rainbow crazy, and yes, it was pretty much all because of the cake!

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

Just as fun – making bowls of colored batter and mixing them up tie-die style.  This is so much fun to do with kids – let them mix in the colors and then spoon them together in the pans.  Once the cake is all set, they love to cut into it and see how the colors turned out!

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

This might be one of my very favorites and it was the most simple.  Boxed angel food cake is one of my husband’s favorites, and I’ll take easy any day.  I made it in a springform pan for a different shape and topped it with strawberries and whipped cream.  Done!

IMG_0542Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

Wuollet’s cupcakes – I got these for both of my girls’ first birthday. White and chocolate with cherry buttercream.  This bakery has a handful of locations in our area and always has great Groupon’s and Crowdcut deals, which helps keep the price down if you’re ordering cupcakes for a big group.

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

My 30th birthday cake – hubby did so well on this one that for the past two years, I’ve been ordering replicas with updated numbers. No matter how old I get, I will probably feel the need to have the matching number of candles on my cake. I love the challenge of blowing out SO many candles!

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

Just my opinion, but this is the BEST white cake ever.  Hands down.  I think it must be the hint of almond flavor and it stays so moist through baking.  And for the very best frosting, make sure it’s loaded with sugar (same recipe link).

Let Them Eat {Birthday} Cake! | Twin Cities Moms Blog

Heads up – if you’re going to make cutesie paper toppers for your cakes, remove them before lighting candles.  Small possibility that one of these, very quickly, went up in flames. 😉

I’m all for healthy living and a healthy diet, but in my opinion, cake is for celebrating, celebrating is for special moments, and special moments are when you make exceptions.  There will never be a black bean cake made in this house – we go straight-up butter and sugar, because birthdays happen but once a year.

The key to a perfect birthday cake is that the person you’re celebrating gets what they want.  This fall, my husband’s birthday “cake” was a pumpkin pie, and even though I hate characters on cake (personal preference!), we’ve had both Bubble Guppies and My Little Pony figures fished out of toy boxes and thrown on top of cakes too.  Always remember that the perfect cake is one that brings a smile to the birthday boy or girl, not one that looks picture perfect.

How do you make birthdays special at your house?

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here