Guess who else had a birthday? This dude! Banjo, a dog who hides under the bed if there is a fly in the house and is scared of life itself, is finally two. I baked him this cake, which, judging by the quantity of drool on my floor, he loved. Humans can totally eat it too, except its gross. I just used a cup to cut it into circles and layer it. The frosting is the same one I use when I’m not lazy and bake him dog treats: 1/4 a cup of peanut butter and two tablespoons of bacon grease. It’s magical.
Foos finally turned 6 last month. We never do huge parties; normally its a cake, piñata, pizza, goodie bags at the park. It’s strategic on my part, I posit that if I go crazy every year, she is going to expect crazy every year and sometimes that is simply not possible. We are poor, so I like to keep expectations low, haha. If we exceed them that is great, if not there is no disappointment. This year was an even more low key affair, it was just cake and family. And you know what? She loved it just as much. I baked a version of this rainbow layer cake with candy surprise. I subbed the candy well in the middle with all kinds if different sprinkles (easier to chew) and it was a big hit and very beautiful. If you are going to try it, do follow the instructions and give yourself time to bake everything. I wasn’t happy while baking the cake until 10 pm after work, but the next day I appreciated that effort because it made things a thousand times easier.
This was also the birthday where I realized her family and friends know her so well. Though she would have loved whatever, and I always say get her what you want when people ask, she didn’t receive any frivolous toys. Instead she was gifted lots of science kits, books, clothes, a zoo membership, a candy making class, a subscription to kiwi box. All things that she needs and align with her interests. It was wonderful, and added to the feeling I already have that she is truly everyone’s child.
Happy birthday, Foos!
We spent our fourth piled together in different rooms of the apartment. Baked cookies and dog treats. Put up with some sass from my girl who did not appreciate me correcting her spelling of ‘etymology’ and who at some point declared that I “didn’t understand her sarcasm.” My daily dose of panic came when she choked on a piece of bacon while eating breakfast (America!), made even worse by the fact that I watched Okja the night before and was already feeling guilty about said bacon. Though we haven’t been feeling particularly patriotic lately, we were invited to a beach house by a friend, went, and had a fantastic time. Life often feels like the strangest of all experiences, but I am glad I get to do it with these people.
Foos & the Fox from Seth on Vimeo.
I wanted to share this beautiful video Seth made of Foos reading and enjoying The Little Prince about two months ago. June 29th would have been Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s 117th birthday. My friend and fairy godperson, Stephanie, got her a pristine copy of that book earlier this year and she finally got around to read it. I made the mistake of letting her see the movie before she read the book and had to field about a thousand questions about the discrepancies between the two. Even so, it was truly a treat to see her enjoy it and engage with it so much.
Foos’ kindergarten ceremony. All of the kids were fantastic and confident; it was real treat to see all of their different personalities come out on stage. Honestly, I think the fact that I didn’t cry merits its own award ceremony. On to first grade!
Photos were taken by her uber talented father.
One of the things that never ceases to amaze me about living in Northern Florida is the variety of green/historical places we get to enjoy. Recently, we’ve been going on hikes at the Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve. Through some miracle we found a trail that was just right for all of us – Foos included. She likes to run ahead of all of us, and I like to worry about said running ahead, even though by now I’m sure she knows the trail by heart. I like to linger behind my family, mostly staring down at the roots with the misfortune of being in the middle of the trail, looking up once in a while to make sure everyone is still accounted for. The trail ends in a breezy lookout we usually monopolize, annoying the shit out of other hikers by taking up the benches, audibly snacking, and singing Moana songs into the marsh. I love my family.
Foos reminds me of an art nouveau maiden, tangled in the ever expanding clover patch in the lot next door.