We celebrated Bree's birthday on Monday, April 5th (instead of on the 2nd) so Grandma Wilkinson could join us in the festivities. The day began with the baking and decorating of the special strawberry cake. I honestly tried to talk Bree out of a strawberry-flavored cake, since I have not met a strawberry cake I've been crazy about. But, it being Bree's birthday and all, I let her call the shots in the end. And she wanted it decorated with a Barbie princess, but not an actual doll cake like she had last year. She helped me pick out the perfect template: a Barbie princess with a kitty on her lap (it's amazing how many free coloring pages there are on the web).
I used a new technique called "butter-cream frosting transfer". You tape the template on a pan or cutting board, cover it with saran wrap, and then trace all the lines with a fine icing tip (I used to have a really fine tip, but tiny things disappear so easily in this house). You freeze it for a little while until the lines harden. Then you fill in all the spaces with whatever colors you want, using piping bags with small holes cut in them. Then freeze the whole thing for an hour, and when it's solid enough, just carefully flip it over onto your frosted cake. I was amazed at how cute it turned out, and it was really easy to do. The cake itself was "healthy" because I mixed a strawberry cake mix (the kind with pudding in the mix), 1-2/3 cups strawberry puree, and 4 egg whites. Super low in fat, and super delicious. Bree was thrilled with the finished product, and I got to have a piece of cake without ruining my diet. Win-win.
Bree has been on a huge Barbie kick lately, and that's all she ever asks for. I sewed a few new dresses for her Barbies a couple months ago, and she's been asking me to make more ever since. Tiny Barbie clothes are not that easy to make! So she got some store-bought ones for her birthday, along with a new Belle Barbie, and a Barbie party set. She has spent many hours playing with her gifts, and when I eavesdrop on her Barbie make-believe I'm entertained and impressed with how her imagination is growing.
She is honestly the cutest girl I've ever seen. She loves learning, and is really good at her alphabet sounds, and can tell what letter a word starts with by sounding it out. She is at the age where she can really help out around the house, and is eager to do so. She can clean her room all by herself, and helps Mason clean his too. Bree is friendly and kind to everyone she meets, and is always so complimentary. Sure, she has her rough moments, which usually involve a bout of tears over something small. But I'm trying to patiently work with her on problem-solving. Although we haven't yet figured out a solution to the issue that her panties are always "bugging her." What is that about? I put my foot down and insist that she must wear them, but I allow her to experiment with changing them out as many times as is necessary to find a comfortable pair. Oh, the challenges of being four.