Thursday, March 19, 2009

Boyz In Da Kitchen

Yesterday was one of those days that came together in a random sort of way and just flowed. It started with a request from my son's friend for some driving practice. Knowing that I was giving my son driving lessons, he asked to join in. After a couple of hours of biting my nails and praying to multiple deities as these two young men practiced three-point U turns, parallel parking and negotiating left turns, we returned home. The day before, I had asked my son to bake me a cake, something that he had put off after he had taken all the ingredients out. When his friend mentioned that he had never baked a cake before, I seized the moment and commanded them both to commence baking. Oh my. What did I do?

These guys became very creative with chocolate cake. They began by tossing jelly beans and M&M’s into the cake batter. They frosted the lopsided layers that emerged from the oven and embellished them with more M&M’s, multi-colored sprinkles, Dunkaroos and anything else they could find. They even placed some birthday candles on the cake and blew them out, just because. It was the ugliest cake they had ever seen and were sure that it would taste just as bad as it looked. I decided to cook a big Puerto Rican soul food meal of arroz con pollo (chicken and rice), stewed beans and tostones (fried green plantains) and invited my children’s friends to stay and eat. When my husband came home, instead of finding our kids in front of their respective computers, he found a house full of lively teenagers and a huge pot of food on the stove. After dinner, I sliced into the cake and served it for dessert. To everyone's surprise and delight the cake was as moist and delicious as it was ugly. The abundance of candy-coated garnish these guys put in and on the cake did nothing to diminish the flavor, in fact I think it was enhanced. My husband raved about how moist the cake was.

After dinner I played chauffeur, driving people to their respective homes, picking up a nephew along the way and dropping him and my son off at the bowling alley. I got home after 10 PM. When I took stock of my day, I realized my time had been completely consumed by the needs and/or desires of others from about 1 o'clock in the afternoon. I spent the whole day driving, cooking and taking pictures of the goings-on. It wasn't at all what I had planned but it probably turned out a whole lot better. I know this is going to be one of those days that will come up in the future when my kids start reminiscing about their youth and it will be accompanied by smiles and laughter. How fortunate that I chose to photograph it. How blessed I am to have been a part of it.

Carpe diem. Treasure the golden moments.

Ballo ergo sum, - Gitana, the Creative Diva

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