My darling cousin Kim got married a few weeks ago. Early in the wedding planning, she asked a few family members if they would make cakes for her reception — she didn’t want anything fancy. I was one of the “asked” and couldn’t have been happier. But of course, I couldn’t make “just a cake.” Three weeks before the wedding, I decided to make cupcakes, and I decided to monogram them. All of them.
A classic move: What seems like a good idea weeks beforehand becomes the dumbest thing you could have possibly imagined the day before it’s due. I got this from my mother. She’s in her seventies and she still hasn’t learned. I, too, may never learn.
The rehearsal dinner and wedding were in Rhode Island, so that means I had to be good to go — packed, plucked, showered, coiffed, and done baking — by 4 p.m. on Friday afternoon. With wet hair and six small bags (somehow luggage felt like a bad idea — I was just going to Rhode Island!), I was in front of Sweet Boston (sweetcupcakes.com) picking up 80 mini-cupcakes at 3:30. Yeah. I failed to bake them. (I think baking them with family love was part of what Kim wanted, but monogrammed with love they would be!)
I stayed with my elfish cousin Courtney (the bride’s sister) and her sylvan husband Andy. Separately, the three of us manage to cause a stir all on our own. Any combination of the three of us is naughty.
Nervous giggles at the church rehearsal, but no incidents. Gobs of laughs and teary speeches at the rehearsal dinner. They’re a nice couple and everyone’s so happy they found each other.
Post-rehearsal-dinner found us in Jamestown at Trattoria Simpatico’s bar, where owner Phyllis Bedard fed us more (pork sliders, yum), and due to rehearsal-dinner margaritas impairing our better judgment, we kept our glasses full.
We returned to the house to the realization that many cupcakes had to be monogrammed. There was some swearing. Then we mobilized. We changed into pajamas. Andy got the chocolate going in a double boiler and the music playing. I got the cupcakes out and lined up. Courtney opened more wine — perhaps a flaw in our plan.
Armed with a design: small “K” for Kim, big “D” for their last name, small “D” for David. Simple. The first 20 came quickly and beautifully. Then we let our compromised creativity loose. “Since there are children, let’s make special ones for the kids.” “Oh yeah, and the priests — there are two, Catholic and Episcopal.” “Nonni should get one.” “If Nonni gets one, then so should Peepaw.” “Oh, and Mrs. D.” “Oh and …” Custom designs poured forth. Some good, some not-so-good. Courtney was relieved of her duties owing to some inappropriate decorations.
Two bottles of wine, one pound of melted chocolate, and three hours later, the cupcakes were done. Not all of them made it to the reception.
Lesson temporarily learned.