I wanted to pop in to tell you about the weekend we've had. It started Thursday and it was a cracker. I think I've mentioned before that the month of April is a packed one here - in our closely extended family there are no less than seven birthdays in these 30 days. There's friends in there too, so there's cakes left, right and centre, it feels.
That's not a bad thing.
My day is still to come, though my mind isn't really on all that. I'm already feeling full and happy with festivity. There has been the winking spark of skinny candles, and the familial harmony of songs sung. There have been balloons and banners and streamers in ruffled swags.
There was cake topped with raspberries and pistachios, and a scant flurry of nonpareils. Beside a slice I nudged a scoop of ice cream for its company and thought of what a perfect pairing that is; the cool fresh against the dense crumb of a good sponge, the vanilla mixing in with the preserves of the filling in an early spring rendition of berries and cream. It tastes like celebration, and like too much of a good thing, which is to say I was tempted to have seconds.
Over this weekend there's been sun, rain, snow and everything in between. At one point yesterday I watched treetops as they bowed to a point I thought they'd surely break; their budded limbs rocking twistedly back and forth against a dull sky. An hour later I was caught in hail almost exactly the size of the candies that adorned my slice of cake the day before. As I ran inside I was as decorated as dessert, dusted all over with white. There was thunder as it snowed in the afternoon and the lamps flickered like the candles.
Then there were moments when we didn't need our coats; when the sun was out and bright, and you couldn't help but turn towards its warmth. Everything kept changing from moment to moment, just as the light did in these photos I've brought to show you. I was reminded me how magic it all can be - of the extraordinary bits to be found here and there; the awe of wind, the joy in blue skies, the pretty of snow and the peaceful company of rain.
I chose to believe that the blustering gusts will make those branches stronger. That all these showers will indeed bring May flowers, and they'll be beauties.
Only words for now. Here's to the hope you don't mind. I'll be back soon with the recipe for what we're proposing for my birthday - a coconut custard icebox cake. Benjamin and William will be helping, and there's plans to sneak some dark chocolate in between the layers if they don't eat it all first.
Until then friends, I wish you days of cake and ice cream.