Before I could walk, or crawl, or form words bigger than my tongue could wrap itself around. Before I could sing or dance or do much more than gurgle and drool all over myself. Before I dyed my hair and adorned myself with tattoos and cared about the way my dresses looked. Before I could play video games or collected action figures or cuddled my dog to sleep every night. Before I had long hair. Before I was potty trained. Before ALL of this... that's when I "met" Lacy.
I am the oldest of my rather humble and small family - it's just my brother and myself. My mother was an exceptional example of parenting throughout the entirety of my existence (and continues to this day), and therefore when I was born she quit her job and fastened me to her side, always. One day, in a desperate attempt for some human contact, she took me with her to McDonald's playland to watch the other children play while she chowed down on a bad for her burger that didn't affect her delicate frame. There, she met Kris, a big boned blonde woman with a midwestern accent and a similar squirmy little parasite attached to her. My mother hails from a small polish town in Wisconsin, and therefore hit it off immediately with Kris, over shared backgrounds and the fact that their daughters were so close in age.
Lacy and I were friends before we knew what friends were.
We grew up together, much like sisters, and some of my first memories are of acting completely absurd with her: playing with horses, laying on the swingsets on our bellies and pretending we could fly, eating sand in the sandbox, wearing matching dresses at our joint birthday parties. We were stuck together as close as two little girls could be, until my parents decided they needed to relocate to Soldotna, Alaska. This move was only a three hour drive away from Wasilla, but to Lacy and I it seemed a catastrophic distance. We wrote each other shaky letters plastered in horse stickers, sent each other birthday cards we made on dinosaur computers with tacky clip art, and when we were old enough we took terrifyingly tiny planes across mountains to see one another. We watched Grease for the first time together, learned about boys, went through awkward puberty, ate too much sugar and spazzed out, covered our faces with glitter, learned the macarena, listened to terrible music. Then, suddenly, when we were both fourteen our parents decided to leave Alaska for good: She to Wisconsin and I to Idaho. Our friendship was already strained due to the tragedy of "growing up", and therefore it did not necessarily prevail once we switched states. We both made new friends and were only a distant memory in one another's minds. Myspace and then Facebook appeared, and we sought one another out - out of obligation, or a need to connect with our childhood, or merely to reminisce. I tagged photos of us together as children I found in a giant trunk at my parent's. Once in awhile we would comment on a post, or I would hear something about Lacy from my mother, but we very rarely talked.
This last weekend I went to Las Vegas for the first time, and, as is in my nature, I publicized this fact. Suddenly, I had an email in my inbox from Lacy, informing me that she had moved to Vegas in December and we should meet up.
Ten years after I had seen her as an awkward pre-teen, Lacy and I were reunited. And it was as if we had never been apart. We still were as silly as always, blabbing on and on to one another, dancing together and commenting on other people on the dance floor. She brought out the midwestern accent I've inherited from my mother and we shared similar stories of how we had come to the point we are in adulthood.
It was a perfect, surreal experience. Someone I have known since literally before I could remember, and our bond is still tangible and real. Friendship, and people, and LIFE are truly incredible things.
I know, I know, this post is a little late for V-day. But who says it has to be some corporate holiday to enjoy delicious miniature red velvet cupcakes that melt in your mouth and are super easy and non messy to eat? NO ONE SAYS THAT. There is never a BAD time for cupcakes, in my humble opinion.
These cupcake photographs are actually about a year old... exactly! They are from a HUGE batch of red velvet cupcakes I made with a friend for her Anti Valentine Day party. These little bites of heaven were snatched up and devoured pretty early on in the night, and they certainly helped the people getting wasted on absinthe not to get sick.
Without further ado, here is my favourite recipe for red velvet cupcakes:
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 (1 ounce) bottle Red Food Color
- 2 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
- 1/4 cup butter, softened
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 2 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract
- 1 (16 ounce) box confectioners' sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt in medium bowl. Set aside.
- Beat butter and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed 5 minutes or until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Mix in sour cream, milk, food color and vanilla. Gradually beat in flour mixture on low speed until just blended. Do not overbeat. Spoon batter into 30 paper-lined muffin cups, filling each cup 2/3 full.
- Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted into cupcake comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire rack 5 minutes. Remove from pans; cool completely. Frost with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting.
Cream Cheese FrostingBeat cream cheese, softened, butter, sour cream and Pure Vanilla Extract in large bowl until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in confectioners' sugar until smooth. Tada!
I've been a huge Harry Potter geek since I was really small. I think I was seven or eight when my mother read the first book to me, and I was absolutely hooked by the second chapter. I was so enthralled with the wonder and how easily I could believe; when an owl didn't come on my 11th birthday I think I cried for three hours. I waited, secretly, until I was 13, believing that Hogwarts didn't find my magical abilities because I was all the way in Alaska. I nearly convinced myself that JK Rowling had gone to Hogwarts herself.
I've always craved such a magical and fantastic existence.
I grew with the characters. They were dear friends, hated enemies, professors I felt much too fondly of. Their triumphs were my triumphs, their downfalls floored me. I celebrated and wept with them... and then the books were over.
A week before the 7th book came out, my two best friends and I went to get our first tattoos. Mine was a golden snitch tattoo, and I have not and will not ever regret it. Harry Potter is a dear friend, and I will miss him so much after the final movie.
But I'll still dress up like a Ravenclaw whenever I damn well please.
(Photos are by the amazing Al, who is uber talented and makes me look way prettier than I am. I didn't do 2 pictures as one of this post because these photos are too awesome to be resized that tiny.)
Molly McIsaac, 2010. Powered by Blogger.