Thursday, January 26, 2012

World's Ugliest Birthday Cake.

Brodie, the baby of the family is turning six. My gorgeous boy that started off life with a full head of fluffy white angel hair and a personality to match.
He has turned into a Star Wars loving, snowmachine riding, snowboarding daredevil. He prefers to sleep at night with his "fuzzy". A fleece blanket that has been around for the last 6.5 years. A gift from my Mom, prior to his birth. Even the most hardened of children can cling to their simple pleasures.

So, the child wants a Yoda cake for his birthday. Honey I say, Mommy isn't sure she can make a Yoda cake, but I will try. How could I deny my gorgeous boy this simple request? Hells bells, what was I thinking?

Online research will help and lots of cake. Screw up, start over. Screw up more, make more cake. I know this routine.

Five boxes of cake are made and chilling in the freezer. Homemade strawberry whipping cream is holding the rounds together. The glue of cake. All should be well.
Until the cakes come out of the freezer and I now have to carve Yoda's face out of a 10 inch tall stack of unstable cakes. What the hell. I am not a carver. My artistic ability goes as far as trying to neatly sign my name to a check.
I am officially hosed and the party is 10 hours away. My husband is the support group. Staying away if cursing is heard, but at the ready if something is needed from the pantry downstairs. Good thing we took marriage vows or I am sure he'd be long gone, years ago.

Bizarre looking cake carved. Rice Krispy treat ears covered in yoda green fondant and stuck with wooden chinese take out chopsticks. Kind of like Area 51 parts laying on the table, that no one should really see.

It's now midnight. The kitchen is trashed with pink cake(Brodie wanted it to look like blood), every bowl and both Kitchenaids are out and covered in splattered frosting. I am going to bed.

Tomorrow is my baby's birthday and by golly it's going to be fun. Ugliest cake on the planet be damned.

A big thank you to Emily for making the spun sugar for Yoda's fuzzy head. Only my Yoda is so disturbing, he now looks like Swamp Thing George Washington risen from the Potomac.

Happy Birthday Brodie

Love, Mom

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Deadliest Catch. Fair or Farce?

Breezing past the Pain in the Ass fiascoes, or the I am too dumb to make money in the real world praise the lord Gold Rush people.

My problem lies in the crabbers. There is a boat on Deadliest Catch, a VERY popular boat. This boat for many years and many years ago(same 0wner) was known through out the entire Bering Sea crabber fleet as a SCAB. A picket line crosser.

People outside of the Bering Sea fisheries world probably don't realize that just a few years ago this fishery was controlled by a catch based on predicted bio mass. A free for all until the mass was caught.

But, canneries(the buyers of the crab) would often times low ball the price of crab, before the opening. The majority of boats would sit in the harbors, as designated negotiators would meet with cannery CEO's and hammer out an equitable price for the crabbers. This would make the biomass catch fair and equitable to everyone, catching, buying and selling wholesale.

Unfortunately, a few crabbers. One of which is VERY popular on Deadliest Catch, did not abide by the crabber strikes. They did not care that all crabbers should receive a fair price for their king crab. THEY broke the picket line. THEY did not care about their fellow fisherman and fairness to all.

When they crossed the imaginary picket line and began dropping crab pots on the grounds, they took away from every other crab captain, crew member, deck boss and engineer. There was no code of crabber respect. They got the higher price. They took away from the quota. They got more, while their fellow crabbers worked harder and received less.

Why? Not all crabbers or crab boats owners have respect for their fellow crabbers. Especially, in Homer.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Pizza Parlor Storm

With the in-laws ready to head back to sunny Arizona we decided to go out for a casual pizza dinner the other night. I warned them, but not myself, that with two weeks in Maui under their belt and one day back to school, their sweet grandchildren may not fare so well. Boy howdy!

With our seven year old having been diagnosed about two years ago with Aspberger's, we are more understanding of his quirks and sometime outbursts. With a year of occupational therapy and two years of counseling, he is doing kind of better. I still am not equipped mentally for some of the things he does. His meltdown on this particular occasion was hotter than the mozzarella on the pie.

Simple questions from the very nice server "what can I get you to drink"? Was the start of a thirty minute tirade. He was overcome with the decision of choosing one drink. This resorted in hitting the table, tossing silverware, throwing himself under the table, throwing himself onto the bench seat, occasional yelling and basically being miserable. We all remained calm during the pizza parlor tirade,thankful we were in the back room, in a corner booth.
We couldn't order for him. That lesson was learned last summer over lemonade in a burger joint. It will never, ever be what he wants.

I took his littler brother to the restroom. When I returned, I was picking up more of Jack's silverware and his snowboots. These were all about five feet from our table. I didn't even ask how they got there, I already knew.

Unfortunately the family across the room knew nothing of Jacks's brainwaves. They glared the entire time. Scowling, wanting to shoot daggers at the distraught little boy or his Mother. Thinking he was a brat. I calmly went up to them, leaned down and whispered "he has Aspberger's". They all smiled and nodded! What the hell is smiling and nodding? Assholes, I said under my breath as I walked away.

The food came. Spaghetti for him, his favorite and a hawaiian to share with his brother. He refused to eat, said take it away. He couldn't possibly eat it without a drink.

So, we all started eating and he continued to whine, but the yelling and tossing of tableware was over.

Then, his epiphany hit. "A root beer, where is the lady, I want a root beer". Oh good heavens don't let them be out of root beer and please nice lady server person, don't ask him if he's sure. Please just get the kid his root beer. We can't take it anymore. She came, nodded and one minute later the perfect soda had arrived.
He sipped. That was it. Then he sat and ate an entire plate of spaghetti, garlic bread and pizza. The perfect pizza parlor storm was over, as fast as it had begun.

My head is now crammed into another book on Aspberger's. Not what it is, but how in the hell do we help a young child get through life's most simple of tasks.

I am also thinking kids have too many options. When I was a kid, Coke, Sprite or water? No,f'n lemonade, chocolate milk, Vita water, coke, sprite, root beer, orange, apple juice, cranberry. Hell. It makes my head spin and my son's seemingly detaches from his neck and flies around a room.