Sunday, September 30, 2012


M's fourth birthday is a week from tomorrow.  He decided on a super hero birthday party way back in June, when we were planning L's "choo-choo duck" pool party.  I really love celebrating my boys' birthdays and always let them choose the theme.  This one snuck up on me a little, but I'm excited.  I can hardly believe he's turning 4.

I think I have settled on what I will do for his birthday cake, too!  If we had never gone dye-free, I probably would be planning some cool Captain America's shield cupcakes.  (I had a picture here but it wasn't mine and I just read a scary article and don't want to make any trouble, so I'll let you do your own googling.) Of course, the night before I'd be cursing myself for choosing something so complicated, and they would never actually turn out this cute, but it's no fun without a challenge, right?

But since I don't know where to find natural dye in Bangkok (and I wouldn't want to pay 35 dollars for a set, even if I did) I need something simpler.  Like a friendly, neighborhood spiderweb cake.  I could do it easily without using any dye or other additives, and it would fit right into the superhero theme.  I haven't decided whether I'll make it a chocolate cake with just spidey's web as the icing, or if I'll ice it with chocolate frosting first and then add the web on top.  Decisions, decisions!  (I had another picture here... just google spiderweb cakes.  I'll take a picture this weekend and put it up.)

As I sit here planning his party, I feel overwhelmed with blessings.  We aren't rich, but we can afford special treats for birthdays without a second thought.  We have friends who love us and will join us to celebrate, even on short notice. (Sorry guys, it's next Sunday!) and we have a home to welcome them in to.  We have beautiful, healthy children. And since we have found a way to help M deal with his self-control and emotions, we won't spend the entire party apologizing for him and sending him to time out. We are truly blessed.

The funniest part, though, is that normally my mind would still be fixed on those Captain America cupcakes. Even with a long list of things to be grateful for, I would allow myself to get caught up on the one thing we couldn't have!

My book group is reading Linda Dillow's "Calm My Anxious Heart" this month.

Books like this help me see the big picture.  I am a person that is easily distracted by details, and I have a bad habit of giving negative things more than their fair share of my attention.  This book has challenged me to stop complaining and choose a perspective of gratefulness.  As I imagine lighting the candles on M's spidey cake and singing happy birthday to my sweet four-year-old, I feel truly content.


  1. I think the web cake looks delicious and he is going to LOVE it! I don't think I could actually pipe the web on top because I have no artistic skill at all, but if I did, I'd go for it!

    It's so easy to lose sight of all of our blessings and focus on the one or two things we don't have. I think we all do that at times. It's great to be able to stop that and get some perspective. And now you've inspired me to do the same today! Thanks! --Lisa

    PS. My daughters 9th birthday is a week from today! Yay for awesome October birthday kids!!

    1. Thanks, Lisa! Isn't it funny? I'm sure my son will love the spider web cake to death - he's easy to please. I'm the only one who would even care about the Captain America cupcakes. Hah!

  2. Juice berries to get a pinkish red, and boiled purple cabbage for a purpley blue. Cut natural black licorice string for the webs lines, or just use white.
    I have a bunch of pins on my Dye-Free pin board for making your own dyes. They're mostly towards the bottom. I have pinned sites for all colors in general, as well as specific colors.

    1. Thanks LM! I've made some light colored icings before, but I'll check those links out and see if there are any ideas in there that strike my fancy.

      Luckily the web will work just great in dark/white, so I'm going to let myself off easily this time!