She’s big now. She wears mascara and high heels and steals my shoes just to see if she’s my size yet (almost). Her sisters adore her and she them, and she’s turning into a respectable gaming partner for her brother who is only too willing to compliment her burgeoning prowess.
Turning 12 is a big deal so we made sure to do the thing properly. To start off, she got to spend the night at my mom’s then go to a local Zoo called Aloha Safari Zoo. Nothing like almost getting slurped by a giraffe to ring in a new trip around the sun. As she wants to be a zookeeper when she grows up, she plans on volunteering at this zoo when she turns 16.
She had Sunday dinner at Grandma Ballard’s and she chose the menu including dessert. She opted for donuts out of her Harry Potter cookbook.
Then the party which, as you know, is actually all about the cake. She wanted a 20 sided die to go with her Dungeons and Dragons themed party. We went to the internet and I quickly realized that while there were some nice tips to be gleaned (white chocolate ganache for a more stable filling and cookie tubes shoved in for supports), I was pretty much on my own.
I was not about to try to cover the thing in a solid sheet of fondant. It’s humid here and I just don’t trust the nasty stuff. Plus I knew that would necessitate way more precision with the underlying shape. Instead we made a basic tower and carved it down. Neil was super helpful getting the angles right.
I didn’t eschew fondant completely. I just used it in manageable pieces. I cut the triangles from a pattern and dehydrated them for 2+ days to get them to be stiff. Then using luster dust I painted the numbers on by hand. Neil printed out a diagram of a flattened D20 die so I could place the numbers accurately. I slowly pieced it together, used an un-holy amount of frosting and left over cake cuttings and built the cake. Also there were lots of stints in the fridge. After filling the cracks with frosting I painted on the blue lines to define the individual faces. Whew! Birthday girl signed her name and was thrilled.
Garyn and his best friend Charlie graciously agreed to be the Dungeon Masters for a short campaign. We got pizza and they camped out in the front room to play. Everyone loosened up and got into it. At one point a pocket guillotine came into play. Charlie is a bit of a showman so he was hilarious running the story and Garyn backed him up managing the numbers. They were amazing. Naomi choose colored flame candles which fit the theme nicely and the cake was a huge hit! We just barely had time for presents and finishing the campaign before snapping a group picture and calling it a night.
Starting next week she is taking on a regular babysitting job that will push her but I know she’s ready for it. I love to see how she is embracing womanhood and looks at all of this new stuff as training for what she really truly wants to be when she grows up…a mom and a wife. We’ve found a groove, she and I, and I’m relieved and excited about letting go and letting her take on more. I’m going to miss her when she goes to school next year but I’m also so curious to see what she makes of it. Naomi is a beautiful human being and I’m grateful she lets me be her mom.