i call her ellabellabeautiful. the man with whom i share deepest darkest secrets–and grocery lists, besides–he took one look at her one moonlit evening back on old cape cod and dubbed her, “delicious cupcake.”
it’s a name that sticks.
it’s a name with superb, as they say, gifting opportunities.
why, if i lived next door, which is what i wish right now, i’d bake for her, wee little morsels, all swirled in pink and polka dots. i’d pull them from the oven, mound them deep in frosting, sprinkles, the whole caboodle. then i’d run, barefoot, right next door. to where the screen door slaps. from where her squeals and gurgles come.
i’d bring, oh, yes, itsy-bitsy cupcakes to my itsy-bitsy most delicious cupcake.
if i told you she was perfect, you’d nod and say, oh, yes. all aunties claim perfection. and then you’d maybe roll your eyes. think i wasn’t looking.
ah, but i’d protest. stomp my feets perhaps. i’d insist.
she really is, you see.
there are babies far and wide, i know. but those babies are wont to cry. and pout. and fuss through dinner time.
not delicious cupcake.
she just coos and watches. takes in the world around. folds her hands just so. spends whole long minutes–which in baby time is forever plus two days–weaving one finger in between two others. it’s quite a trick. delicious cupcake.
the most astounding cupcake trick, i’d say, is this one: for three days and three nights i barely left her side, so it’s not like she snuck off to the bathroom, slammed the door and had a real good cry. not like she crawled under the covers and whimpered till the sheets were soggy.
i tell you, that baby did not cry.
now crying, for most little humans, is just a part of what they do. a big part. a straight-through-dinner-and-on-into-nighttime part. they cry and cry and cry. till your arms shake. till your wits are at the very end. till you consider looking for the warranty, seeing if perhaps there’s a clause for refunds and returns.
but not cupcake.
cupcake, in a house full of big people who would have noticed just a peep, well she is altogether something more (yes, i said it: more. it’s auntie’s privilege to claim superlatives and not call it boasting).
she is that rare mellow baby girl who doesn’t raise her voice in protest. ever.
she seems to understand she won the baby lottery. she’s got a mama and a papa who would make you, too, a cooing, charming wonder.
they play the flute to her. they sing to her. they rock her in their arms. she drinks her mama’s milk. lets it dribble down her chin.
they hold her up to see the stars. take her strolling in the garden. already, she knows a black-eyed susan. and a sweetpea. and she’s just barely four months old.
i cried and kissed her goodbye after three fine summer days. but, oh, for the height of my summer’s ecstasy, she’s what i did–wholly, and deliciously–on my summer’s vacation.
this is but a travel postcard. i could write volumes on the subject of her holiness, her deliciousness. i could write of how i ache to be so far, far away from her. to know, every single day, that i am missing the miracle of her unfolding. but i am merely leaving a morsel in our trail. she is a love, plain and simple. and perfectly. delicious cupcake, yes.
what did you do–who did you meet–on your summer’s vacation?
David and I do believe that we choose the family we are each born into. So, we think Ella picked the crazy lot of us, and is so happy to be here! Thank you so much for making the trek out east to be with us. We love, love, love you Auntie Babs. Here’s lookin at all that lies ahead!!
as i read ella is sucking on a bottle. quickly finished, i only got four or five paras into it. now she hangs out while i finish.. hurricane bill heads north, thunder rumbles. great to be home holding ella. thanks for posting this! great photo.
Oh oh oh!!! Oh my but she’s scrumptious!! Perfection in every way. Who wouldn’t want to smother her sweet cheeks with a thousand kisses?I guess God knew that I couldn’t handle a fussy baby (mine came so very late in my life), so, He blessed me with two daughters that rarely ever cried or fussed. The coos and squeals are still so vivid to me.Blessings to this beautiful family … the happiness shows.
y very first delicious cupcake of a niece had her first day of HS today… a freshman. My sister and I reminisced about the beautiful, gorgeous baby she was way back when. She’s even more beautiful today….You have much to look forward to!
Yes, she is a cupcake – perfection held in your hand. Thank you for sharing her with us. Can’t say I’ve gone very far or met anyone this summer. It’s been a different sort of summer in my realm, none of the usual vacations or experiences. I’ve been focused on those near and dear to me, experiencing family life with its ups and downs, many, many downs with my mom’s health. I have found that I have more patience and resilience than I thought I did, and I’m happy to know the depths of my inner strength. The human spirit is immense, just as is the joy of a new baby.
Ella has her grandmother Mahany’s smile.
Man if she doesn’t look related to your two, especially number two, I have no idea who does. This column was a delicious cupcake about this delicious cupcake. I had the pleasure of meeting Ms. Cupcake this summer. She was asleep when we got to her home but we peered at her calm self. Her slumber was an opportunity to get to know her wonderful mother about whom I have heard so much over the years and somehow missed until then. And to catch up with her father who is a favorite of mine. What is very remarkable is the amazing connection between Ms. Cupcakes’ parents. That’s a pretty good thing for a kid, maybe even better than flutes and stars, which are pretty darned good. The next day we met Ella, She was sleepy and beautiful and pretty quickly we had to leave town to move along on our mother-daughter road trip. I was sorry not to have had more time with her and hope to know her better as time moves on.
oh, dear jan, what a beautiful thing that one.) you and your delicious cupcake took a cross country trek together, the two of you. and two.) that you carved out time to meet the portland cupcakes, one and all. i had the hardest time deciding which picture to post up above. one of my faves is simply her dimpled thighs/knees/calves tucked into those mary janes that you gave to her. oh, it’s a picture worth savoring. but i couldn’t pass up that animated punim. oh, what a punim. xoxoxoxo isn’t mama becc just about the most delicious soul? the crumb doesn’t fall far from the cake here, does it??? welcome back from summer everyone. boy one started junior year of high school today. egad. boy two starts third grade by week’s end. did i really write that? wasn’t he starting kindergarten just the other day?!? oh lordy.
The photo sends me. I log on and stare. Someday we’ll meet her. Until then thank God for the internet.Ella so many people you haven’t met are in love with you.:-)
she is so perfectly the embodiment of her new name – i am so happy for all of you!
yum yum yum. She is the most delicious wonderful perfect baby in the world. To be an aunt of such a one is just about the most wonderful job in the world!