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Hazelnut’s Second Birthday

Today’s my birthday!

Mommy sometimes calls me a Thanksgiving baby because my birthday is right before or right after Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving always happens on a Thursday and this year my birthday is on a Friday. I’m learning about how days have different names like Monday, Tuesday, and so on. Last year, my birthday was on a Wednesday and I was born on a Tuesday. Mommy told me my birthday will be on Thanksgiving in 2025. That’s a long time from now! In the mornings, we practice the days of the week. Today we said, “Yesterday was Thursday. Today is Friday. Tomorrow will be Saturday.”

I woke Mommy and Daddy up early in the morning by jumping on their bed. I didn’t understand why, but I knew today was a special day. Mommy got up and we went downstairs for milk and coffee. I love playing with Mommy’s coffee cup, but she won’t let me try her coffee. We read a book together called Yummy, Yucky and one of the pages says, “Mommy’s cookies are yummy. Mommy’s coffee is yucky.” Mommy says I won’t like coffee until I’m older and I don’t need to try it because has something caffeine that isn’t good for kids. Mommy says I don’t need help waking up but she does.

For breakfast, I helped Mommy make scrambled eggs. She used the silver dollar pancake pan so they looked like egg pancakes. Maggie had eggs, too, and so did Mommy. Mommy had another cup of coffee and let me open my first present.

“Elsa! Anna!” I shrieked. My new dolls are in my favorite movie!

I played dolls with my sister. Maggie likes the Elsa doll and I like the Anna doll. I took off their shoes. I don’t like wearing shoes and kick mine off when Mommy puts them on me, so I pulled theirs off. I don’t understand why we need shoes. I don’t like wearing them unless they’re Daddy’s house slippers. I love wearing those because the insides are soft and fluffy. They’re so big on my feet, too!

We watched my favorite movie and I got lots of calls wishing me a happy birthday. I got to talk to my Grandma Corrine, Grandpa Guy, my Uncle Steve, my Aunt Kate, and my cousins, Jack and Levi. Mommy says we’ll talk to Grandma Eli and more family this afternoon after nap time. We finished my favorite movie and went to the kitchen.

Mommy let me help make my birthday cake. Guess what it was? That’s right. Hazelnut!

This was how we made it:

In the food processor, we pulsed hazelnuts until they were like powder. We poured 1/2 cup of ground hazelnuts in a big pour. Then, we sifted gluten-free flour into another bowl. We only bake with gluten-free flour because gluten makes Mommy sick. Daddy says he and I can eat all the gluten, so he shares stuff with gluten with me when he goes out for food. He acts like it’s a secret, but I think Mommy knows. We took a 1/2 cup measuring cup and counted three scoops of sifted flour. One-two-three! That makes 1 1/2. Then we added 2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder, 3/4 teaspoons salt, and mixed it with a whisk.

In the stand-in mixer, we creamed 3/4 cup unsalted butter until it was fluffy. We took the 1/2 cup measuring cup and counted three scoops of sugar. One-two-three! That makes 1 1/2. After that mixed, Mommy broke in three eggs, but she did it one at a time. Mommy doesn’t think I’m ready to break the eggs yet. We added 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla.

After it was done mixing, mommy took turns mixing in the flour mixture and 1 cup milk. She’d add some flour mix, then milk, then flour mix, then milk, and it was all mixed up!

Mommy drew circles on a special paper called parchment paper. Mommy says it helps prevent sticking. Mommy cut out two large circles and I played with the paper scraps. Using a brush, Mommy and I painted melted butter inside the cake pans, then pressed the circles into the pan. Mommy poured the cake batter into the pans and it baked for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Mommy turned on the oven light so I got to watch it bake through the oven window.

For the frosting, Mommy made hazelnut buttercream frosting. I helped her do this, too! We took three sticks of butter, a pinch of salt (I got to pinch it!), 24 ounces of powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, and 3 tablespoons of milk. We mixed it all in the stand-in mixer for a long time. Mommy said that’s the most important part, letting it mix on high for a while so it gets fluffy. Then we added ground hazelnuts. It was about a cup. We mixed that on low, and then we got to do the best part! We built the cake! We spread the frosting between the layers, on top, and the sides, and we sprinkled crushed hazelnuts and chocolate chips. I wanted to eat it right then, but Mommy said, no, we had to wait until we sing happy birthday after dinner.

Why can’t we sing happy birthday and eat cake now? I thought. We sang happy birthday when we woke up, we sang happy birthday again and again when the family called, and we sang happy birthday some more just because.

After we ate turkey (again) for dinner, we got to sing Happy Birthday! Mommy brought out a candle and said after we sing, I blow out this candle. It was in a jar and smelled like cherries. “Sometimes, when you blow out a candle on your cake, you can spread germs all over the cake,” Mommy said.

“You forgot to buy a birthday candle?” Daddy asked.

“Yes,” Mommy replied.

I blew it out and ate a slice of cake. It was delicious! We should eat cake every day, but Mommy said we only eat cake for special occasions and today is special because it’s my birthday.

I opened some more presents after we had cake. It was the best birthday ever!


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