Ten

That's what this person is now. 10! 
Z is as cool as I always hoped he would be, and his birthday proved no differently. We told him we probably wouldn't do a friend party this year. He shrugged his shoulders, ok. Instead, he and his dad went to the Roper Mountain Science Center in Greenville to observe an enactment of Ancient Rome, as well as explore a planetarium, some other activities I can't remember and some kind of hands-on animal thing. (I used to remember those kinds of details. But then a decade ago I had a child and ever since, my brain is a new, unpredictable animal thing of its own.) They also had all-you-can-eat pizza. So there you go. Oo, I just scored some pictures from B's camera, so now together we will be able to fill in some blanks.
While they were away, I worked on Z's only real birthday request (besides a huge lego set--let's be real): a coconut cake. And not just any coconut cake. This cake (the recipe from a good friend here who had decided to tackle a cake made the "southern" way) had the cake in 2 layers (white cake mix, eggs, sour cream, cream of coconut, coconut, among other things), the glaze (coconut milk/sweetened condensed milk mixture) which was poured over and into the (poked by a fork) cake, the filling (cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, cream of coconut, coconut) that went between the layers, and the frosting (heavy whipped cream, sugar, coconut milk, gelatin) on top, oh plus more coconut.
Are you gaining weight just reading this? I don't blame you!
 This cake took me 10 hours to make! 10 hours for my 10 year old! There were a few iffy moments, but in the end, deliciousness happened. Here are a few pictures of the moment we actually got to dig in. It was like 8:30 at night by this point. We were delirious with coconut.
Happy birthday to my favorite fellow. Z had to go through a rough transition at school the week of his birthday: a new teacher 4 weeks in (too many 4th graders). He's handling it with chillness and maturity (and only a few tears), and I'm so proud of him. When I was student teaching a decade ago, my favorite kid was named Zane. I always hoped coolness passed through names sometimes, magically, just because--in this case, I'm happy to report it did. Wonderfulness, ultra-happiness for all surrounding players, that's our man Z--just like a coconut cake.
And oddly enough, he's easily distracted just like the first Zane was as well. So there's that.
Love you Z.
 ***
Outtakes from the day/weekend.
Chik-fil-a for lunch in the lunchroom, except I didn't realize Annie would be there too, and Soren commandeered the lemonade as soon as he figured out it was SO GOOD. So Z had to share with not one but TWO siblings and of course, with a shrug of the shoulders, he did.
Here's one of the aforementioned iffy cake moments, the moment when I realized my freezer was too skinny to fit the cake inside. no matter, I thought, we'll just sliiiiiide it in diagonal-style. I grinned when it worked, the cake sticking to the pan thanks to the glaze I had just poured all through it. Then I tried to shut the door and realized the freezer was also too short for the cake. Door bang, whiplash. Doh. Off to the fridge it went, as I tacked on a few more hours of prep time. 
And, the blow-out-the-candles moment in which I realized we had no candles. And it was 8:30 and I wasn't going to the store for candles. So, with another shrug and a giggle this time, he blew out the automatic lighter. 10 years later, we're still the parents of the year. Oh yeah, and my camera was on a weird setting, so this is the picture I got.
It's a good thing this kid knows how to shrug his shoulders!

Comments

walt or jean said…
Sure do love that boy Z!
Maria said…
An amazing celebration for an amazing kid (and an amazing mom! You need to convince him to go with boxed cake and rainbow chip frosting from a can!) Miss you!
ash said…
Dear Zane, You are hands down the coolest 10-year old boy we know. Thanks for sharing a birthday with me, it totally makes me more awesome. Michelle, you deserve the "Mom-of-the-Year" award! That cake looks amazing!