Celebrating being four…. Part 1 – all the chocolate cake!

For the first three years of her life we have celebrated Astrid’s birthday with parties and a meal out as a family.  This year she was keen to take cupcakes to preschool, and since it is Soren’s year for a big party, we just had a very small celebration at home with family.

Of course there still had to be cake……..when you are four, having a birthday cake, getting to blow out candles and opening presents, is what it is all about!  For the the last couple of months Astrid has been asking for a ‘number four’ cake.  Compared to what I’ve had to produce in the past, it was a pretty simple request.

We started with making cake. The tiny chocolate fiends voted for chocolate mud cake……. especially because they love licking the bowl!

Soren was all over the cake making part of birthday celebrations this year!!  Once the cake was baked, it was time for number four cutting out and then the icing with purple buttercream.  Astrid and Soren were keen observers.  Soren was devastated that he wasn’t getting to eat all the cake offcuts (or the icing).

Anto did a fine job with the tedious task of edging the cake with chocolate malt sticks, and the kids had a ball filling the cake with chocolate beans. Even if Soren did try a few ninja attacks of the bowl of beans to get some for himself.  The finished product looked pretty good for a basic ‘4’ cake!

Since someone had to eat all that chocolate mud cake, covered in sugar and chocolate, we gathered the relatives (and pseudo-relatives) who were available and had a little afternoon tea for Astrid on the Saturday before her birthday.  Since we were having afternoon tea, there had to be some food to offset the cakey goodness.  Some cheese, dips, home-made date slice, olive oil & rosemary teacake and cranberry & pistachio biscotti and some more chocolate did the trick!  We also did some mini frankfurters (with sauce) and fairy bread for the kids (big and little)…..

Aside from eating, both Astrid and Soren had a wonderful time opening presents and playing.  Soren still isn’t sure what this birthday caper is about, but he loved getting to try out his sister’s new loot.  Astrid was in (almost) four year old heaven, with games, kitchen toys and a skipping rope!

Finally it was time to blow out the candles and sing happy birthday and crack into that delicious chocolate concoction………..  Soren was fascinated by the candles and the fact that he was about to get  to eat that cake he’d been staring at all day. Astrid loves all birthdays, all cake and all candle blowing so the fact that it was all for her, made her ecstatic……

Everyone enjoyed the cake immensely. Some very tired and chocolated-out little kids went to bed that night.

Astrid was excitedly telling us how much she had enjoyed her afternoon tea, and was looking forward to her real birthday and being four.  Her parents just drank more wine, ignored the mess and wondered how we had almost survived 4 years of parenting!

In the next installment – the big day, a present treasure hunt, a merry-go-round ride,  more food, more chocolate and more fun………

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