Monday, February 21, 2011

Valentine's Week

There were more signs of love at the breakfast table last week...

and at the dinner table...

We also enjoyed a great date night, during which we saw The King's Speech with Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush. Very good.

But my favorite occasion of the week was the annual Valentine's skating party at Wollman Rink.

This year, I volunteered to make something for the illustrious baked goods table. With the help of Betty and Duncan, I whipped up two dozen cupcakes. Some were frosted white, with crystalline white sugar on top for a snowy effect. These were to be my "Winter Wonderland" cupcakes, with tiny deer and silver trees perched on top. The pink frosted ones were intended to anchor "Happy Valentine's Day" picks.

Unfortunately, my new clever cupcake carrier from the Container Store wasn't clever enough to allow for some headroom - meaning they didn't fit with the decorative picks on them, so I had to carry my picks separately and plan to decorate on site. But as we approached the entrance of Wollman Rink, two eager-beaver young helpers in white aprons descended upon my cupcakes.

"Are those for the baked goods table?" they chirped. I could hardly say no, but I did try to explain that they still needed to be decorated (just so). "No problem, we can do it!" they practically cheered. Mrs. Sunnymead gripped that cupcake carrier a little tighter. I didn't want to fork these over - especially without anyone (other moms, in particular) witnessing me arriving with (semi) homemade baked goods. I had envisioned a few oohs and aahs, honestly. But this is where I had to intervene by repeating my mantra to myself: "make life nice without making yourself (or others) crazy." "Let it go, Mrs. S.,let them finish decorating your perfect cupcakes." And off the eager-beavers went with my cupcakes.

I have to admit I spent the first 15 minutes of the party stalking my cupcakes - or trying to. Where were they? Did they even put them out? Did they remember to add the decorations? I finally spied them...they weren't exactly what I would have done, but honestly, who (other than me) cares?

With the cupcakes quickly demolished - and most of my carefully sought-after decorative picks on the floor, crushed and sliced by hundreds of skate blades on the way to get pizza and soda, I got down to the business at hand -- enjoying the party. The skates may be hard blue plastic and the pizza might have a slight cardboard texture, but nothing beats looking up and realizing you're skating in the middle of New York City. It truly was a Winter Wonderland and a Happy Valentine's Day.

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