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March 28, 2011

That saying has always fascinated me and when I was young I often used to wonder what time goes by or where and when? I know firsthand now that it actually just goes by! And fast! It doesn’t wait, it doesn’t respect your requests for it to slow down at all. It just relentlessly keeps on going by!

I am sitting here in my small, overheated study, the window flung wide open to catch any recalcitrant breeze and the curtains fully parted as the sun has already passed the mark where it shines on my screen and prohibits me from seeing what I am typing or reading. I am listening, as I type, to the lazy buzzing of the bees busy at the lavender blossoms below the window, the heady calming scent reaching my nose enticing me to go out into the fresh air rather than sit cooped up here on such a magnificent day. But sit here I must! I have put off long enough doing what I love doing and giving in to the lazy side of me that wants to give in to doing nothing at the moment…..a sure sign of that post traumatic stress disorder rearing its unwanted head in my life again. All the work done to organize FBI2011 has taken it’s toll and I am exhausted and in need of a little bit of time out but it just doesn’t happen here. And so I should learn that I am neither as young or as strong as I imagine I am and to just give in to the need to sit and do nothing for a while, except maybe get lost in a good book….but that essentially leads to a session on the pillow with my feet up and my head in dreamspace…..zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz!!!

It is a stunning summers day down by the bay – odd that as it is officially autumn and it should be a lot cooler than 30deg Celcius, we should be having north westerly breezes blowing up bad weather from the north, bringing some much needed rain. Instead the sun is blazing down from a deep cerulean blue sky, not a breath of wind is rustling the leaves on the windblown, salt browned plants in the garden and it is hot!

My daughter celebrated her birthday yesterday on a day exactly like today. All her younger life she wanted a swim party, every year it was the same request – “Please can I have a pool party this year Mommy?” Only to be bitterly disappointed time after time as the weather had always turned to winter never mind autumn by the the 27th of March and she had to settle for jackets, socks, boots and indoor parties instead of bikinis, sunscreen, sun hats and al fresco eats on the lawn under the tree. Looking back to those days and looking at the weather we are enjoying I see how the seasons have changed and I wonder what is to come still?

Of course, being a baker and being a mom of a daughter with a birthday I had to bake her a cake didn’t I? I turned to my “go to” seriously easy boiled milk vanilla sponge. It is always such a pleasure to bake this cake and it turns out beautifully every time. It never disappoints, rather it is a source of great delight. I have taken to using Kapruka coconut oil instead of vegetable oil or butter in the batter and it just lifts  this cake to another level, so light, a wonderful crumb and a very delicate coconut flavour. My daughter asked for citrus flavoured frosting and, coupled with the salted caramel filling, it was a winner! Even my orange hating son gobbled down his slice (or three) without muttering!  I am submitting this post to Tandy’s challenge for this week. I used the recipe as in my cake link above and added finely grated zest from half a lemon to the batter and finely grated zest from an orange to the frosting! My first challenge entry for a while 🙂 Of course my son had the last word……he asked what the dust particles were in the cake. Vanilla bean seeds son, vanilla bean seeds!!

I had a little helper with the frosting…..he makes an excellent licker or anything with frosting on it 🙂 Every bakers kitchen needs an elf like this…….

Happy Birthday my beautiful girl….love you!!


Have a good week everyone. I have so many recipes to post. Just need to get my mojo going so that I can edit some photos to go with them. Hope to do that this week.

browniegirl xx

30 Comments leave one →
  1. March 28, 2011 4:30 PM

    Oh Colleen, this is the life, I tell you! What a beautifully written post. It makes me miss my family in Yzerfontein, so much.

    Much love, Wxx

    • March 28, 2011 4:38 PM

      Thank you sweetie, you have family in Yzerfontein? I love that place…..hugs and love xx

  2. Supa permalink
    March 28, 2011 4:38 PM

    Gorgeous cake Colleen! I hope your daughter had a wonderful birthday.

    • March 28, 2011 4:39 PM

      Thank you Supa, she had a lovely birthday weekend! Always so much nicer to have a weekend birthday. Hope you are feeling much better xx

  3. March 28, 2011 4:49 PM

    That cake looks so good, maybe one could do without chocolate – just once

    I love your kitchen elves, they are the best!

    • March 28, 2011 5:17 PM

      Hehe, she usually has a chocolate one…well you know which one haha! But I just didn’t feel up to baking that one this year so she chose this one. It really is delicious. I adore my little kitchen elves 🙂 xx

  4. March 28, 2011 5:21 PM

    Seems a perfect birthday.
    Ah, lookit that Fish Hoek hillside, how I yearn for it.

    • March 28, 2011 8:48 PM

      I know, when I took it I thought of you……Fish Hoek was beautiful today and yesterday….but there were lots of sharks in that there blue water 😦 Hugs xx

  5. March 28, 2011 5:26 PM

    this is a beautiful post my dear friend! the cake looks awesome, and the elf is too cute 🙂 Have a super day xxx

  6. March 28, 2011 8:17 PM

    A lovely post Colly. Sorry you are feeling exhausted and I hope you take plenty of time out. That is one hell of a cake, lady. Beautiful icing! How about the recipe then? I am not much of a baker so I’d like to give this one a try. x

  7. March 28, 2011 11:03 PM

    Looks like S enjoyed her birthday. Cake look great. All I can do is drool and admire the artistry. Love the cake stand too. Sure is unusual weather not that I’m complaining, it’s been glorious. At last I find a bit of time to catch up on bloggy posts and other things. Seems like I have not missed much though so look forward to the rest while I am able. Hugs xx

    • April 5, 2011 8:58 PM

      Thanx Chez, yep, she had a good birthday. I will do my gf chocolate one for when we see you guys 🙂 I have been too busy with conferencing so the blog took a bit of a backseat. But hope to do so more often now. Hugs to you xx

  8. March 29, 2011 6:47 AM

    What a beautifully written post Colleen. I hope you find your mojo soon! Your daughter must have had a lovely birthday with that exquisite cake.
    🙂 Mandy

    • April 5, 2011 8:59 PM

      Thank you so much Mandy. Blogging really took a back seat for me the last few months but hopefully it will get better now. My daughter had a lovely day thank you 😉 xx

  9. March 29, 2011 10:39 AM

    I have also stared substituting coconut oil in my baking with huge success. Works really well with chocolate cake too!
    Happy birthday to your daughter. A jersey is a garment worn by child when its mother is feeling chilly!

    • April 5, 2011 9:00 PM

      Thanx Rose, isn’t it just the most awesome product to bake with? Im loving it. Thank you for the wishes. xx

  10. March 30, 2011 4:28 PM

    Happy (belated) birthday to Siobhan! If ever your kitchen elf is off duty, I’ll be happy to help out with the icing licking duties. 😉

    • April 5, 2011 9:01 PM

      LOL! I don’t know that he will ever be off duty now that he has discovered “fwosting” 🙂 Thank you for the birthday wishes for Siobhan xx

  11. March 30, 2011 5:18 PM

    It’s tough getting your mojo back when you’ve been out of it for a while, isn’t it? Struggling myself with that at the moment, but don’t worry, colly, you’ll get it back! I see you’ve lost none of your desire to write, so the photo-editing genies will shine upon you soonest! can’t wait to see what you’ve been cooking up, this cake looks so yummm!

    • April 5, 2011 9:04 PM

      Thanx for that lovely compliment girlie. I’ve just been too busy to blog the last little while. And now I’m too tired LOL! But will get there…..the cake is a seriously delicious one, promise. And so very easy…no fuss here! xx

  12. April 1, 2011 2:38 PM

    What a wonderful post,CollieWollie! I hope you will get your mojo back, soon!! Enjoy the weekend!

    • April 5, 2011 9:05 PM

      Dankie Polkie…always nice to see you. Had an awesome weekend in the mountains near Montagu. Rested well…xx

  13. April 1, 2011 5:23 PM

    I always make the cake for both of daughters on their birthday too; though I don’t have one coming up for several months, the words seriously easy and coconut have me bookmarking this one! Hope you had a lovely day and get some rest!

    • April 5, 2011 9:07 PM

      I end up making the cakes for everyone’s birthdays this side….hehe! But I don’t really mind as I love baking Barb. This is an awesome recipe. I do hope you try it and let me know how it works for you. Have had a lovely weekend’s rest in the mountains, good clean air, no sirens or noise other than birdsong and some very dark nights to sleep well 🙂 xx

  14. April 1, 2011 6:03 PM

    So enjoyed reading your post, Colleen. That cake looks really delicious. Hope your daughter had a great birthday. Gorgeous pics.

  15. April 5, 2011 9:08 PM

    Lovely to see you here another day. Thank you so much for the visit and the lovely comment. She had a lovely birthday thanks. Hugs xx

  16. April 12, 2011 4:02 AM

    Very nice post and family.
    I can’t subscribe to your RSS-post can you check it.
    Thank you


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