Leaving the Cupcakes in More Capable Hands


My oldest child Sun-Bun is four, so I am still a relative newbie to the world of class parties. But last week I got my first taste. Sun-Bun’s pre-school class hosted a “Spring Fling” and her teacher set out a sign-up sheet —which read more like a catering menu than food stuffs for four year olds: veggie tray with dip, assorted lunch meat, buns, fruit tray, juice, cupcakes. And alone, at the bottom of the list: Napkins.

It was at this moment I realized that I would be choosing my destiny. Was I going to be a napkin mom or a cupcake mom?  Would I be Sun-Bun’s hero, swooping into her class with a platter of delectable nut-free cupcakes swirled with miniature mountains of butter cream?

As I reached for the pen to sign my name next to cupcakes, I had a flashback to just a week prior, when my dear friend, anxious to make a good impression at a new school had grabbed the coveted cupcake slot. She called me the night before the class party, in tears, from the all night grocery store; she had forgotten her cupcake commitment and was desperately trying to find thirty gluten free cupcakes at nine o’clock at night. (When that failed, she was forced to stay up all night creating candy-kabobs).

It was an important lesson for me. I could see myself ending up in the same predicament, forgetting about the cupcakes until ordering my morning latte and then spending an entire week’s pay at the Starbucks drive-thru on cake-pops.  I’m a forgetful, hopelessly disorganized mom.  Plus, I am not a baker. The last thing I attempted to bake were cookie-brownie bars.  I forgot them in the oven and they turned into a molten mess. (which I devoured with vanilla ice cream after the kids went to bed).

Standing in front of the sign-up sheet, I felt it would be wrong for me to rob the spotlight from a more deserving mom, one who bakes, sews and has a family calendar. Sigh. I was feeling pretty bummed. I turned to walk away from the sign-up sheet.  But then I stopped myself. After the little darlings binged on butter cream, how would they clean their faces? Napkin mom to the rescue! And I proudly put my name in the slot.  I am, after all, the Mom who always has  tissues in my purse or pocket, ready to wipe away a stray boogie or a milk mustache. I have even been known to wonder (aloud) why hankies ever fell out of fashion.

Heading into class with our package of paper goods, Sun-Bun and I bumped into a mom juggling a giant platter of cupcakes, on top of each cupcake was a tiny fondant butterfly resting atop a giant swirl of pastel colored frosting. They looked glorious. “Oh mommy, look at those!” Sun-Bun exclaimed, staring in wide eyed wonder at the cupcake creations. “Yes, honey” I replied sighing, “They are beautiful, now look at mommy, you’ve got a little something on your face.”


About Tina

Tina lives in Phoenix, the Valley of the Sun(burn). She is mother to daughter “Sun-Bun”, b.2007 and son “Pookie”, b.2009 and Blue, the saddest bulldog in the world. She is married to a quirky man from Trinidad, which Tina is pretty sure is Spanish for “land of sexy dancers.” During the day Tina works in wireless telecommunications, spreading cell phone signals to all corners of the country - including your car (but please don’t text and drive). Tina suffers from parenting esteem issues which she attempts to mask with sarcasm and wine. She strongly believes that if Virginia Woolf had been a mother she would have penned, “A Bathroom of One’s Own.” She is also convinced that Nature may well be a mother, but the destructive forces of gravity could only have come from a man. When she is not aimlessly wandering the grocery store aisles, digging BPA-free sippy cups out of the back of her minivan or patrolling her home for scorpions, Tina can be also be found at Three In the Bed.

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2 Responses to Leaving the Cupcakes in More Capable Hands

  1. avatar
    Christina-Marie, aka The Gonzo Mama May 7, 2012 at 12:15 pm #

    Tina, this is a fabulous piece! Kudos to you for celebrating the mom you ARE, rather than caving to pressure to be the mom you are NOT.

    I’m always looking for the slot that says, “Mom to slouch around in yoga pants and drink coffee,” but never find it. It’s a shame, too… I’m really good at that.

  2. Alexandra May 8, 2012 at 11:51 pm #


    That is me: the napkin/paper plate/plastic cup mom.

    And I fulfill that role like NO OTHER.