Surviving Summer Funtimes: Week the Second

Mother Nature is going through some mood swings this week. I’m right with her because I believe in supporting other mothers.

Sticky heat ping-ponged with torrential rain, meaning one too many days where the kids (after a hearty morning of Awesome Camp, which is what I’m naming it because it is, truly) just melt and flop inside.

You know what accompanies indoor melting and flopping during rain and awful heat?

Juuuuuuuuuust a little bit of expressed displeasure.

I suggested we “try to be productive with our time,” a phrase that resonates with kids, especially during summer break. After a quick glance at the monsoon out our window, I said maybe we should build an ark out of Amazon boxes. We tossed that plan aside once we realized that the only thing we could put in there “two-by-two” were the snack wrappers that whimsically decorate the playroom despite my constant purges and threats of buying only Red Delicious apples for snacks.

Plan W – because Plans A-U were met with raucous disapproval – was to pull out the Easy Bake oven, a chore in and of itself because I keep it in the same closet I keep my “Just in Case I Go Somewhere nice” clothing. It’s also the closet where my husband keeps his fishing tackle and Cornhole set. Obviously, it’s like the Wardrobe to Narnia in there.

Does anyone lose their shit as much as I do when undertaking easy-bake oven projects with their kiddos? Youngest wanted to make “Chocolate Truffles,” which are essentially cake pops. I’ve made regular Non-Easy Bake cake pops many times before: make a cake, mix it with frosting, cover with more frosting or melted chocolate, dip in sprinkles, done.

Easy Bake Chocolate Truffles supplies an extra of fury. If I’m not aggravated off by how hard it is to spread the batter in the pan or roll these assholes into a ball, I’m pissed off about how difficult they are to frost and the fact that the nonpareils don’t adhere at all.

The ire is viral. I inwardly complain that my daughter talks through the whole thing while I’m squinting at the teeny-tiny directions wondering what I missed (nothing) to screw up the whole thing. Then I’m outwardly non-plussed when she licks chocolate and sprinkles off her hands and goes back to crafting little crappy cake pops that now I’m supposed to eat. We’re just spreading botulism around at this point. I don’t know why I think that – I’m pretty sure she doesn’t have botulism, but who knows what sort of “Transmit the Serious Disease” version of Hot Potato they play at Awesome Camp.


My older kids, the wannabe Chopped judges, are more than happy to comment on the cake balls.

Juuuuuuuuuust a little bit of expressed displeasure. (They ate them anyway and declared them “Delicious…if you don’t look at them.”)

I left a message for myself on the box for next time. If you can’t read my delightfully quirky handwriting, it says, “Just bake the cake and frost – don’t make balls.” This is now my theme for the rest of summer.

On the days it got hot this week, which it did dramatically and intermittently, we went to the pool.

If there is ever an Olympic event for doing handstands and shooting each other with water pistols while clinging to a pool noodle, my kids will get bronze medals. And I shall reward them with Easy Bake treats.

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