A few days ago my five-year-old daughter asked me if I could bake sugar cookies. It’s a big job that makes a pretty gigantic mess. But she was begging me, and I know that ever since I had the new baby, she, maybe even more than the other kids, has probably felt invisible once in a while. She’s my second child of four. She’s a peacemaker, and usually just wants to make everyone happy. Parents can’t help but love that. I was a kid like that. But kids like us aren’t usually squeaky wheels, so that’s when some invisibility accidentally happens. I decided I’d better make those cookies. But then, just after that, she said, “And then can we invite over all of our friends for a tea party with the cookies?”
In a split second it all flashed before my eyes. I saw our house. It was sparkling clean and lemon fresh in my vision. Streamers in pink and purple scalloped the ceiling, and beautiful balloons and fresh flowers adorned every corner. In the kitchen there was a magnificent table, set with a vintage tablecloth, real ceramic quirky looking mini tea cups and plates, and an eclectic spread of adorable snacks. My cookies were intricately frosted with cream cheese frosting in every color of the retro rainbow. There were tea sandwiches with bread dyed in pastel colors, stuffed with fancy cheeses or cucumbers or Nutella. The doorbell rang, and a dozen miniature Zooey Deschanels filed in, carrying the lacy invitations they had received in the mail a week before.
The vision became hazy and through my twitching eye I saw our real kitchen, covered in apricot guts. Our apricot trees were full of ripe fruit and we had been spending several days canning and drying. I tried keeping up on the mess but the floor had sticky patches that day. And the sink was full of dishes, and there were toys all over the house. “No,” I said. My daughter’s shoulders slumped. Then I said, “Wait. Okay. We’ll do it. How about just a few friends?”
Joe whipped out a shade tent in the backyard, and the kids brought out their toy table and covered it with a small white tablecloth. I found some paper plates. Joe got out our cheap stemmed glasses which we filled with the last of the powdered lemonade. The kids frosted the cookies themselves. They were unevenly frosted and lopsidedly covered in sprinkles. They were delicious. Two friends came over, and all the kids were all smiles. They had a great time. I smiled, too. I was glad that I didn’t say no to a tea party that day, just because I wasn’t capable of making it Pinterest worthy. My kids didn’t care. And they’re the ones who needed it most. I guess the moral of the story is that if you decide not to do something because someone else has probably already done it better online, you’ll probably never do anything at all.
On a mostly unrelated note, I’m posting a video today of a clip from a really fun evening of my life. In March, we had an album release concert for my new album, “Homeless Songs”. My favorite song on the record is “The Fall”, which I wrote for my husband, Joe. Maybe how this ties in with this blog is that this was the last song of the concert, I was a month away from having a baby, and I had already been singing for an hour and a half. I was sweaty and my breath support was gone. But I’m posting it anyway because I love the song and it was a great show. I hope you enjoy. If you do, please share the video with your friends, and consider picking up a copy of the new album. Here’s that video. The Fall: Cherie Call Live, March 18, 2014 Enjoy!