Today I needed to make Elizabeth's birthday dessert (she chose yellow cupcakes with strawberry frosting) (I love that "yellow" is an actual flavor of cake), so it seemed like the perfect moment to stop being shy with the new mixer.
I wouldn't say I was sorry to see the old mixer go...but I've had it a lonnnnng time, so it's a little poignant. My first husband and I bought it with money we got for our wedding, so that makes it about 17 years old. Please don't say, "Oh, I was in third grade when you bought your mixer!" No, it's not any better if it's fourth grade. Really, that sort of remark never works out well.
After that marriage ended and I graduated from college, I got a job in a bakery, working with the big mixers the countertop ones are smaller versions of. Part of the reason I got that job is that I knew how to use a Kitchenaid mixer: the big ones are the same, you just have to put your arms all the way around the bowl to get it off the stand, and then lift with your legs. I've never quite understood how to make "lift with your legs" work, so I always had an ouchie back with that job. Also, I picked up some habits that work well in a bakery but not so well at home, such as just FLINGING flour across a counter to evenly flour it before working with dough. (Bakery: There's flour all over the place anyway, and someone else comes in after to clean the floors. Home: Tag, you're it.)
When Edward was about three years old, he was climbing on the counter (NOT ALLOWED) and started to fall. He grabbed the mixer to steady himself, and he and the mixer both went down. We were very lucky they fell in different directions. The noise the mixer made when it hit the floor, combined with Edward's shrieks (which turned out to be panic rather than pain) had me re-evaluating what a "good outcome" was.
Edward was just shaken and scared, but the mixer hasn't been right since then. The back of it has to be held on with duct tape, and it's still very loud and vibratey unless you put pressure on the wound. The beater doesn't quite line up with the bowl anymore, so there are missed spots and scraped spots. And the knob that lets you change speeds got bent straight down; in order to change speeds, you have to sort of TWIST it as you move it---and it can slip suddenly. Going from speed 1 to speed 8 all at once is...not good for most things you might have in a mixer.
Paul and I agreed it needed to be replaced, but it still worked okay so there was no rush. I couldn't decide on a color. Pink was my long-standing favorite.
But over the years the attitudes of some other women toward the color pink had made me feel self-conscious about liking it. It's rare to hear someone express dislike of, say, green, in the spit-on-the-floor way they might express dislike of pink. And that made me second-guess my like of it, which then made me mad because the whole "girls have to like a certain color because other people say so" is exactly the kind of principle the hate-pinkers are generally AGAINST. And also, mad because spitting on what other people like is mean, and pointless, and poor for the development of one's character. And also because, what about Ice?
And what about Green Apple? I LOVE green. I SAY pink is my favorite color, but when I'm choosing stuff I more often choose green.
And what about Buttercup? I love that shade of yellow.
But then pink went on one of those one-hour deals, for the best price I've ever seen it (and I've been watching it for YEARS). That made the decision for me, and I bought it. (I'm glad I didn't realize that Ice was going on the same deal an hour later.)
So here is my old mixer, with its subtle and barely-visible duct tape repair:
And here is my new:
I'm second-guessing it, of course (maybe I should have gotten the green! no, the yellow! no, the green! no, the blue! no, the green!), but it's good to have the decision made (and the cupcakes too).
Gift ideas for an 8-year-old, part 1 of 2 - I have TWO 8-year-olds to buy for, so I’m going to split it up into two posts. Today will be the things we’re getting for Edward. I dislike saying “Gift id...