Daphne Made Her Own Birthday Cake, Too

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Daphne Decorating Her Birthday Cake Per Her Request

Daphne turned three on Friday. She is such a big little girl. Her only birthday request was to make her own birthday cake, as her big sister had done for her birthday. A chocolate chip birthday cake with chocolate icing and sprinkles, to be exact.

And so, of course, she did…

Daphnes Birthday Cake Collage

Daphne made her own birthday cake, doing every step herself from cracking the eggs (one of her all-time favorite things to do), to pouring the ingredients (I admit to measuring them myself, for the most part), and mixing them. I read the recipe of course, and made sure all the ingredients were put in in the correct order, and put the cake in the oven and such, but the work of cake making was all Daphne’s.

And boy was she proud of her job!

The apron is made using Sew Liberated’s free Child’s Apron tutorial, by the way. Maia and Daphne each have one. I think they are the best cooking aprons for young kids because they can put them on themselves
—they slip over the neck easily and the waist strap closes on the side with velcro.

Daphne Decorating Her Birthday Cake
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Once the cake was baked and cooled, Daphne decorated it herself as well.
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Daphnes Birthday Cake 10
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This is what I had waiting for her when she woke up from her nap: both layers of her chocolate chip yellow cake (chocolate chips added to the yellow cake recipe from Baking Illustrated), chocolate ganache (from Pioneer Woman’s Life by Chocolate cupcakes), chocolate sprinkles, colored sprinkles, some M&Ms, and a little tube of white decorator’s icing.
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Daphnes Birthday Cake 25
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Daphne took her cake decorating very seriously. Here she is adding a small icing embellishment to the top of each little M&M that she had set in a row.
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Every addition was like that. Carefully considered and executed.
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As a side note, I let Daphne decorate her cake before Maia came home from school, partly because I wanted her to have complete ownership and the space and time to do it her way. I didn’t want Maia to take over, as she can do sometimes.
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Daphnes Birthday Cake 41
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Here is the finished cake.
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Note that every bit of decoration was used—all of the sprinkles, all the decorator’s icing, all of the M&Ms. If any sprinkles didn’t make it on the cake, it’s because they rolled off. I purposefully kept the amount of M&Ms and such small because I imagined that might happen, but there was still a lot on top of that cake!
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Daphnes Birthday Cake 33
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Daphne was so proud of her cake. It was absolutely perfect in her eyes.
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She also kept saying, “This is the best birthday ever!” As if she has a whole lot to compare it to (I don’t imagine she remembers much of the last two birthdays).
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Daphnes Birthday Cake 44
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Once the cake was decorated, she insisted on setting the table herself as well.
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Daphnes Birthday Cake 2
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And so my little one turned three.
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We had a small family celebration followed by an apple picking trip the next day (complete with hay ride, picnic, and apple cider doughnuts). It was a sweet, sweet birthday for a sweet, sweet girl.
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Happy Birthday, Daphne!

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21 Comments

  • Reply
    Sarah M
    September 17, 2012 at 7:59 am

    Oh happy birthday to your littlest one–she is so proud of her creation!
    Sarah M

  • Reply
    Jane
    September 17, 2012 at 8:58 am

    Best birthday cake EVER!

  • Reply
    Carly
    September 17, 2012 at 10:12 am

    Not sure which photo I love more – the intense concentration when she’s putting the icing on the cake or her smile at the finished product. This is a wonderful post. Happy birthday to your baby girl.

  • Reply
    Melanie Routhier
    September 17, 2012 at 12:24 pm

    Happy Birthday Daphne! I absolutely love this idea and will be doing it when my son is old enough. How wonderful!

  • Reply
    Dena
    September 17, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    Happy birthdy to Daphne! She does look really proud and so creative how she added icing to the tops of each m&m!
    Very jealous of the apple picking…….can’t do that around here and Naomi wants to soooo bad!

  • Reply
    Eleazar Balboa
    September 17, 2012 at 11:00 am

    What a beautiful cake!! Love that you tried the recipe and enjoyed it. Oh, and I make my own birthday cake every year (I too am a cake snob!) …
    Don,
    http://yesshop.yolasite.com/blog.php

  • Reply
    Kristin
    September 17, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    Love the bunting and the balloons on the window! So happy!
    Daphne did a great job with her cake too :)

  • Reply
    Leslie
    September 17, 2012 at 3:36 pm

    Happy Birthday Daphne! She did such a great job on that cake and the look on her face says it all. This is a wonderful idea I can’t wait to try in next year with my son.

  • Reply
    Allison
    September 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm

    Beautiful post! Happy Birthday to your sweet big girl!

  • Reply
    Lucille
    September 17, 2012 at 6:22 pm

    This made my heart melt. So so sweet. Happy Birthday!!! I bet the cake was yummy!

  • Reply
    L.
    September 18, 2012 at 5:25 am

    My 3-year old would have been over the moon had he been able to bake a chocolaty cake himself! I’m trying to think of some other celebration he can get cake-baking rights too soon! So cute!

  • Reply
    Angie
    September 18, 2012 at 8:43 am

    Happy birthday, Daphne!

  • Reply
    maggy, red ted art
    September 18, 2012 at 1:10 pm

    Totally gorgeous post and HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Wonderful.

  • Reply
    Lola
    September 18, 2012 at 2:24 pm

    Happy birthday, Daphne!! She did a great job on that cake!!

  • Reply
    mfm
    September 18, 2012 at 4:12 pm

    What a great post! This is exactly what I love about your blog: you let us know what your kids want to do and how you let them accomplish it. And, as usual, your writing isn’t dry or heavy-handed, it’s joyous.
    Happy birthday, Daphne. You’re lucky to have such a fun mom! And your cake is wonderful!

  • Reply
    Sarah
    September 18, 2012 at 7:27 pm

    What is this amazing fabric you used for the bunting!?

  • Reply
    Brigette
    September 18, 2012 at 8:17 pm

    What an awesome idea!

  • Reply
    Erin
    September 18, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    What fantastic joy in her eyes! And what a lovely cake! Jean, you are a rock-star-great (yet real) mom…thanks for the inspiration.

  • Reply
    Lauren
    September 19, 2012 at 9:53 am

    So sweet! Happy Birthday to Daphne!

  • Reply
    Lina
    September 24, 2012 at 9:48 pm

    Awww, what a sweetheart! Looks like she got the best birthday gift of all. Love the happy, concentrated and confident expressions on her face!

  • Reply
    Marina
    September 26, 2012 at 4:45 am

    That is lovely, well done Daphne. Here in Dublin, Ireland, I have just stumbled upon your blog, very happily, (from the post you made of the table fort), and cannot wait until my little girl (10 months) gets a little bit older so we can learn from you and do wonderful art things together!

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