Sunday, 3 July 2011
For they are jolly good fellows
I have a natural (English?) aversion to the "Look at me and my beautiful life" post. So, apologies to any like-minded readers. My life is not always beautiful but yesterday it was. Yesterday we gathered together our family to celebrate Owen's and Fanf's birthdays at La Plantade (our local park). First things first, there was cake. I made some caramel shortbread for Fanf and to my great surprise the caramel behaved itself and did not run amok, as is its wont. For Owen I made a vanilla cake which, like all my cakes, domed and cracked in the middle. Mary Berry tells me this problem has two possible causes: either the oven is too hot or the cake is on too high a shelf. As Mary Berry is not among my acquaintance she neglected the third possible reason: you are Bex. Anyway, I slathered it in strawberry buttercream and all was well. I chose strawberry buttercream because Matilda, who was in charge of decoration, wanted a red cake. However, no matter how much dye I poured into the mixture, it remained resolutely pink. So my son had a pink cake for his first birthday. The irony. Matilda did rather a fine job of the decoration.
Down at the park it was a glorious sunny day, refreshed by the wind that makes the heat just bearable down here. There was fizz, there were presents, there was cycling, running, tumbling and frantic searching because one of the seven children had managed to wander out of eyesight. I discreetly licked off all the strawberry buttercream from the plates when I tidied up. Don't judge me, you didn't taste it.
(I think of this one as the Tic Tac shot.)
We then decided to head down to the Guingette next to the river for an aperitif. More chinks, more runnning. We then decided to stay and have dinner (huge thanks to the grandspoilers for treating us). Steph ordered the most gigantic lobster any of us had ever seen.
The mini-beasts did more running, Benny Hill style, and then grabbed sticks and started chanting "On va à la chasse" ("We're going hunting"). I don't know what they were hunting but the amount of noise they were making, whatever it was cannot have been in much fear for its life.
The sun set, the rosé was drunk, a lovely day was had by all.