My daughter is celebrating her 14th birthday today. I’m celebrating, too, because it marks the day she officially came into my life.
Some parents become all somber at the thought of their little darlings growing up. I treasure each birthday as a reminder of each day we have spent together and the many more to come. She’s priceless.
So I’m a bit over the top when it comes to birthdays. For her first birthday, I asked my mother to bake a carrot cake with cream cheese frosting. I was doing the whole no chocolate thing for the birthday. Plus I love carrot cake. It is a long and involved recipe not suited for hot, August days. My mother was a real trooper.
Her birthdays after that grew more complex. Aside from cake and ice cream, I had birthdays with magicians who levitated the birthday girl, a party at the Erie Zoo, a party where a zoo came to our house, a hula-hooping party, pirate parties … My mother thinks I’m nuts. But it really is all about celebrating the wonderful day she came into my life. Each year both my mother and my daughter roll their eyes at me.
This year my daughter didn’t want a party. At 14, she’s old enough to tell me she doesn’t want a party anymore. It makes me a little sad, but I’m also very proud to raise a daughter who can speak up for herself. She wanted a punching bag for her birthday, along with clothes and jewelry. I picked out a book by an author she hadn’t tried yet.
I surprised her with a bathroom full of balloons with notes tied to them. I even wrapped the punching bag. Then she was off to orientation for her freshman year of high school. She wanted a cake, so thanks to Pinterest, I made a Kit-Kat cake. It’s not particularly complicated. You make any kind of cake and frost it. Then ring it with Kit-Kats and fill the top with candy. Tie a ribbon around it so it looks like a box of candy.
I think all girls should celebrate with friends, so she invited her gang of gal pals to dinner out tomorrow night with a promise of a beach bonfire with s’mores if it doesn’t rain.
Will she share the cake tomorrow?
Not on your life, she said.