Thursday, August 9, 2007

Fit For A Princess

22 years ago I had a little girl. She was 9 lbs, 14 oz. with a shock of black hair and sweet, pink cheeks. We named her Sarah, because in Hebrew, Sarah means Princess. This past week we celebrated that occasion. It wasn't anything big, just a nice dinner with her fiancee over. Some champagne. And a cake. Of course a cake.

I was slicing the cake when my husband said, "This is the last birthday of Sarah Craig." What?? Was he having an evil premonition? It took a moment for my champagne-adled brain to register that next year at this time she won't be a Craig, she will be married. She'll be in her own place with her own wonderful husband. I'll still bake her a cake, if she wants, but it won't be the same.

I'll no longer be able to rouse her out of bed to come out on the deck and take pictures of food because the morning light is just perfect. She is the reason my blog looks so good. She is a professional photographer who does my food pics out of love.

She won't be here to do a yoga video with me. Or tell me that my outfit is dowdy and needs to be changed. Or say, come snuggle in bed and let's watch an episode of The Office together.

She won't be moving far. Not out of state or out of the country. But it won't be the same.

She won't be here to tell me, "Mom, you look so hot!" and make me laugh. I know we'll be on the phone together a lot, but that's not the same as watching the entire 6 tapes of Pride and Prejudice while we have the flu together.

I'm so happy for her to be marrying a terrific young man who loves her whole-heartedly. They will have a wonderful life together. But I will miss her. Even though I'll see her often, it won't be the same.

When I asked her what birthday cake she wanted, she said, "Something fruity. And pretty - so you can blog it."

So I picked a recipe that combined ladyfingers with a sweet, tangy raspberry mousse and topped it with a crown of raspberries. It was delicious and we all gobbled up our pieces. Here is the recipe . I need to go get a tissue.

Sarah's Raspberry Princess Mousse Cake
adapted from Taste of Home

1 6-oz package raspberry gelatin
1-3/4 cups boiling water
2 packages (12 oz. each) frozen sweetened raspberries, thawed
2 cups heavy whippping cream, plus extra for garnishing
23 ladyfingers
Fresh raspberries for garnish

1- In a large bowl, dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Stir in raspberries. Refrigerate until partially thickened. (I had to go do an errand at this point and when I returned, my gelatin had set. I just let it warm up a bit and broke it up with a fork.)

2- Whip cream till it holds semi-firm peaks. Fold whipped cream into gelatin mixture.

3- Arrange the ladyfingers with rounded sides out around the sides of an ungreased 9-inch springform pan. Carefully spoon raspberry mixture into the pan.

4- Cover and refrigerate until firm. Garnish with whipped cream and raspberries.

Makes about 12 servings.


Jerry said...

Oh Lynn, you are breaking my heart. You are saying the same things I heard when I went to college from my mother and it gets me everytime. You are not losing a daughter, but gaining a friend. Of course, I'm always up for adoption too!

Ellie said...

Oh, Lynn, this post broke my heart a bit as it sounds much like the conversations that I have with my mother. We live in each others pockets and adore the time we spend together, chatting and cooking...and even though we both know that one day I'll fly the coop, it's sad to think about losing this level of closeness with my mother/my best friend.

However, Jerry is'll be gaining a friend, and hopefully she'll still be close enough to share a few hours of Pride and Prejudice should either of you fall sick :)

Blue Zebra said...

{{Lynn}} the passing of time is so bittersweet isn't it? I sometimes wish I was a magician so that I could create still frames of moments, just so I can savor them a second or two longer.

What a beautiful salute to a beautiful princess - your blog entry and your crown cake. One thing will be certain, that through your blog, you are creating memories for Sarah to cherish. You are also creating memories of the times you spent together on it, that you will cherish!

Sending beautiful thoughts your way!


Emily .M. said...

Oh my!
Last ' Sarah Craig ' birthday........
My mom was also 22 when she got married :-)

Joey said...

Happy Happy Happy Bir-thday Sar-rah!!

Burçin'in Denemeleri said...

Happy birthday Sarah.
Congratulation Lynn for this influencly post.

Mandy said...

what a sweet story and so much love behind the cake..may I know where can I buy the raspberry gelatin?

VeggieGirl said...

This is such a phenomenal post - between the personal stories of your memories with your daughter (I checked out her website - her photography work is brilliant!!), and the lovely mousse cake recipe, I thoroughly enjoyed reading it all. Happy birthday to Sarah!!

DianneM said...

Of course there are many lasts ( could cry all day about them): Last time they talk baby talk, nurse, last diaper, or the last time they need you to drive them somewhere. There will be many firsts: first time you hug your son in law, first time you feel your new grand baby kick, first time your tears of joy spill onto your new grand baby etc, etc......

I am not sure what all the lasts, or first are like. I just know that there is some sweet exchange that can be celebrated. It is all those moments that strengthen us as family.

I wish you, my friend, all the best in your lasts, and firsts respectively.

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

I couldn't love my boys more but their are so many times that I realize, I missed knowing a big part of myself when I missed having a daughter.
Happy Birthday to Sara and you.
I'll be needing a tissue also.

Melinda said...

Happy birthday Sarah! The cake and pictures look delicious. Sarah's pictures are excellent and do the blog proud.
My daughter turns 22 in two weeks time too! While my daughter would not get in bed with me and watch the tear jerker DVD's I watch...we are very close too.

Anne said...

Happy Birthday Sarah!

lynn, your daughter is so pretty and very talented too! Your post made me teary reminded me of my mother, how she was like when I got married and when my family left our country to leave in Singapore... I only get to see her one's a year ...your lucky you'd still be able to see her anytime you want to :)

The cake is absolutely stunning fir for a princess!

Anh said...

Happy Birthday Sarah!

Oh Lynn, your post really touches me. I am turning 23 today, and I miss my mother so much... Thanks for an excelelnt post, Lynn... *hug*

Kelly-Jane said...

A beautiful heart-felt post :) Mine little girl is a pre-schooler and reading this I can feel the little prick of tears!

Happy Birthday, and lovely cake Lynn, as Diannem says lots of firsts too...

I really appreciate the shot of the picture being taken - so that's how you get a coloured backdrop! - I'll be using this one :)


Cookie baker Lynn said...

Jerry -You are so great! But wouldn't your mom be a bit sad if you got adopted?

Ellie- I can tell by your writing how close you and your mother are and what a blessing you are to her.

Blue Zebra - Thank you!

Emily & Joey - Sarah smiles and says thank you. :-)

Burçin'in Denemeleri- Thanks!

Mandy - Raspberry gelatin is in grocery stores, usually under the brand name Jello.

VeggieGirl - Thanks so much for the kind words!

DianneM - You are so sweet, kind, and wise. Thank you, my friend, for your perspective.

My Kitchen In Half Cups - Boys are awesome, but there is something about a daughter... but daughter-in-laws can be wonderful, too, right?

Melinda - Your daughter is lovely (that's her picture at your birthday dinner, right? Or is that you?). Happy birthday to her, too!

Anne - Send your mother a note and tell her how much you love and miss her. It will make her month!

Anh- Happy birthday, sweetie! Hugs back at you.

Kelly-Jane - My husband took the picture of us taking the picture. It was pretty funny with both of us in our pj's (I made him crop mine out) out taking food pictures. I have a big supply of fabrics for quilting, which works out well for changing up the look of the pictures. And give your sweet little girl and extra hug - they really do grow up fast!

The Cooking Ninja said...

Happy Birthday Sarah!

Lynn, your cake is so beautiful and so is your daughter. Mine is only 14 months old ... I still have a long long way to go :) Hope my daughter and I can do things together like you and your daughter.

SteamyKitchen said... friend. I'd give you a big big hug right now.
but maybe she'll make you nice grandbabies that can come over all the time!

Nora B. said...

Dear Lynn, now I need a tissue. This post reminds me of how much I miss my mom.

The birthday cake you made for Sarah looks so pretty. I'm sure that she knows that she will always be your princess.

Sarah said...

You are so kind to write such a post. Just remember, me getting married and going away means two things 1) Another storage room to fill with stuff!!! 2) Less bickering from Serena and I 3) A house to escape to some times (aka mine) instead of just your bed room 4) Me getting married and going away means a job well done to you. You're an awesome mommy.

sarah said...

Sorry... i wrote four instead of two, but I did get a little carried away I must admit.

Isha said...

what a lovely cake
hey, happy belated bday 4ya ^_^
good blog anyway

Maria said...

Happy Birthday to Sarah! She is gorgeous!! I hope you had a great celebration...I am sure you did with that splendid cake!!

Patricia Scarpin said...

I have tears in my eyes, Lynn! What a beautiful, beautiful post!
And your daughter is gorgeous! Really!

The cake is divine and I'm sure she loved it!

Tartelette said...

Lynn, I'd be most happy to give you my mom's email addy: I moved away at 22 to the US, 3000 mile away from France and I got married the same year to a man 19 years my senior...a dream come true for a mom right?!!!
You and your daughter have a great relationship that nothing will change, not a husband, not a move. You guys are one. Beautiful cake!

Amy said...

A beautiful post and a beautiful cake. Sounds like you and your daughter have a fantastic relationship. Hope she had a wonderful bday!

Cookie baker Lynn said...

The Cooking Ninja - 14 months - how sweet! You can start making kitchen memories together now.

Steamy Kitchen - I'd take that hug. Yes, grandbabies are the way to go.

Nora - Send your mom a note telling her how much you love and miss her. And enclose a tissue for her.

Sarah - I love you, even though you're counting impaired. :-)

Isha - Thank you!

Maria - Thanks so much.

Patricia - We yummed the cake up in two days. Happy little piggies!

Tartelette- Oh, how you mom must have wept! I hope she's forgiven you for being so far away.

Amy - Thanks for the kind words.

eatme_delicious said...

Very beautiful cake! It's funny & nice that your daughter said "make something pretty so you can blog about it". What a wonderful relationship you have with your daughter.

Anonymous said...


Kristen said...

Look at that photo set up! Wow.

OK - this post almost had me in tears. My baby starts kindergarten tomorrow and I know exactly how you feel, but in a different way, about their needs for us as their moms changing.

Happy birthday to your birthday girl!