Monday, 24 September 2012


Well it's Monday morning and it's pouring with rain and I am supposed to be doing housework as I have a day off (for this read 'I am planning to carry the laundry upstairs and then get the Hoover out and inevitably suck up about 400 Lego men's head)....therefore I am blogging.

It occurred to me earlier that we haven't talked about cake for a while. The Great British Bake Off is back on BBC2 and currently provides me with my highlight of the working week when it comes to evening entertainment.  I'm saying nothing about the fact I get over-excited about whether or not someones creme brulee resembles a pool of snot other than 'oh my god I'm turning into my Mother'.

Some of you long time followers may recall my adventures in baking Iggle Piggle - which bizarrely ended up on the first page of Google if you searched for 'how to make an Iggle Piggle cake even though it emphatically told you how NOT to make one.  Go figure.  If you need to explore this adventure in food dye, icing that resembled a placenta and Lambrini it's here:

Anyway several birthday's have passed since then and thus several cakes.

Last year I made the younger child a cat cake - this became known as the Psychotic Pussy.  I don't have a picture (I can't think why) but I seem to remember him crying when he saw it and people looking awkward.  The cat looked angry.  VERY angry.  And it was covered in silver balls and jelly tots.  My ex was still living in the house at this point and I think the cake, in retrospect, may have kind of channelled my inner feelings. And no doubt I decorated it after drinking 4 cans of Stella.  This was the same birthday that I realised late the night before I had no wrapping paper and had to wrap his presents in wallpaper samples.  First and last jigsaw puzzle he'll ever get wrapped in Laura Ashley's 'Kimono Duck Egg'.

This year his dad made him a Russian tank.  It was far less alarming.

For the older child last year I had the idea of baking a volcano. As you do.  If you want to make a volcano cake here are your instructions:

1. Get a jug (kind of dome shaped) and cook a sponge cake in it.  By a jug I mean a Pyrex type one.  If you use a plastic one you will end up with a smell akin to the one I once experienced when a friend's younger brother put a Lego mat under the lit grill pan......

2. When the cake is cooked take it out the oven (always helps) and cut out a cone from the middle. This is to make the bit the lava rises up through and spills out of.  The 'vent'.

You will note from this photo that the part removed from the cake has an unfortunate resemblance to a sponge penis.  But this is the shape you are looking for.  You can do as you wish with it - it isn't needed for a grander plan.  I ate it.

3.  Decorate the cake so it resembles a huge pile of dog vomit after a dog ate some ball bearings and mustard and bled internally an erupting volcano (and yes that IS icing, it is NOT ketchup and mustard).

4. Realise that unless you do something bloody quick nobody is going to have a clue what the bloody thing is other than a tragedy in carbohydrate form

5. Stick a plastic Jurassic looking tree and a surprisingly camp dinosaur (tragically out of scale) on it and VOILA - A VOLCANO CAKE!! Or dinosaur standing over a fresh kill...

This year, not to wanting to turn away from a seemingly winning formula, I cooked another cake in a jug and made this......

What do you mean you don't know what it is!?!

It's a tornado.


There were originally more chocolate fingers 'whirling' round it to symbolise the winds but some, erm, went missing.  Down my throat.

By the time I served it there was 4 left.

The only warning I'll give you on this recipe is that if you stick small things in the cake to resemble storm damage be careful of accidentally swallowing something like a Playmobil guinea pig.  Nobody wants that coming out in their poo.  Least of all Mary Berry.

Friday, 14 September 2012

Back to Reality

I'm baaaaack.

Sorry - as usual never a dull moment. 

I had a lovely holiday with both kids - it can be summed up by hot, funny, amazing food and drink which means I can't  do my bra up properly....(presumably due to weight gain rather than smuggling large amounts of pastries home down my cleavage), kids acquired an inflatable boat and spent large tracts of time 'taking the bridge', met someone from the Internet in ACTUAL REAL LIFE WHO READS THIS BLOG (woah!!) and was staying in same hotel, may have ended up drunk on stage lying down and showing my knickers to a 50 year old man from Guildford (sadly they were the neon pink Anne Summers ones), small child enjoyed fresh tuna and olives, bigger child enjoyed, erm, chips and icecream, one child got heatstroke and I had to borrow a buggy from reception so we could still go the harbour and drink cider sight see - sadly the buggy was pink.  Well that was a debate I'm surprised hasn't made it onto the Trip Advisor reviews (as in 'holiday ruined by screaming child in lobby being forced into pink buggy by aggressive rough looking woman who we'd earlier seen on stage showing her vile knickers)......but I got him in it (by telling him all children in Spain have pink buggies).   Anyway all went well apart from: 

- getting locked on my own balcony whilst both kids were in the swimming pool.  I'd only nipped up there to get a towel (which stank of piss anyway as one of the children wet the bed and kindly got up and padded it all out with our beach towels.....). I know I know - I think too much Rose at lunch affected my judgement. This lead to me hanging off the balcony in my bikini shouting at my eldest 'DO YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT THE  RECEPTION IS? NO? ITS THE PLACE WITH A DESK AND A LADY.  YOU NEED TO GO THERE AND TELL THEM YOUR MUMMY IS STUCK IN ON HER BALCONY. DO YOU KNOW OUR ROOM NUMBER BECAUSE I DON'T? OH GOOD WELL DONE (thank god for amazing visual memory).  AND TAKE YOUR BROTHER AS HE CAN'T ACTUALLY SWIM'.   

- the 9 hour flight delay on the way home.  With no money left.  I have never been so relieved to get on a plane and see a steward who would accept credit  cards.  'What would you like madam?'.....'well first things first 2 cans of Magners'....(he laughed knowingly).  Youngest child promptly knocked can of Magners over  he was stinking of cider with matted accidentally dreadlocked hair and as soon as the seatbelt signs were off standing on the seat shouting at the kid behind 'you are ACTUALLY a nutter'.  To be fair he had a darn good point.  At one point this child  had been threatening to punch his mother because she wouldn't buy him a KitKat.  She looked at  me with pleading eyes and said 'I  don't know how you do this on your own'.  I smiled whilst thinking 'well maybe because my kids don't threaten to punch me over shit confectionary' but she looked somewhere past breaking point so I left my thoughts unsaid.  

This wonderful  journey peaked when I got to Luton (as it naturally would). Eldest child began to cry (as you would if it was midnight and you felt sick and found yourself in Luton) and promptly collapsed on the floor in the arrivals bit and fell asleep on a rucksack whilst clutching a stuffed guinea pig (as in a soft toy - not an actual product of taxidermy).   Of course at this point younger child began hopping from one foot to the other shouting 'I need a wee, it's coming now'.   Now I'm pretty chilled but even I baulk at leaving a small sleeping sickly child alone in the middle of the floor while I go to a toilet in a completely different part of the building. I stood there thinking 'help' when a graceful lady swept upon me and said 'I  have been watching you....'.  Oh great I thought....but she guarded the guinea pig clutcher whilst I took the other one to the toilet.  Thank you - whoever you are - thank you. 

Some time later my friend turned up and I went to try and find the bags.  Of course at  this point eldest woke up, sat up, and rained forth vomit across the guinea pig, bag and a large portion of the floor.   

Is it wrong that my first thought was 'shit - whose going to tow the other suitcase now?'.  

When we got to the taxi youngest child refused to get in due to the booster seat being pink... at this point I 'may' have screamed 'do you want me to pull down your pants right here right now and spank your butt IN FRONT OF ALL THESE PEOPLE? NO. Well GET IN THE CAR THEN' (I don't smack him - I just reached the point of being 'that' mother people glance at then go home and write outraged Internet threads about).  And he got in the car and fell asleep within 3 minutes.  

So now I'm back and it did me the power of good getting away and the very next day my children started a new school which touchwood is so far FANTASTIC and they embrace my lovely, interesting, mind blowing older son as an individual who has different learning needs to the majority and does not have (quote old teacher) 'an attitude problem' which 'makes life very hard for himself'. 

He's only been there 2 weeks and already the difference in him is amazing.  He's even broken his lifelong 'huge routine to say goodbye that if it's broken results in total panic and inability to do anything all day'.  Walks in with his amazing Support Worker smiling and laughing!!   MIRACLES DO HAPPEN PEOPLE! If you kick enough arse and befriend other arse kickers......  Don't get me wrong a lot of shit still happens but we need to celebrate the victories.  

So new start, new school and on Monday I start a new career...... wish me luck's gonna be a hell of a ride.