Tuesday, December 8, 2009


Today I'm making soup. No, not the kind that you eat. The kind that you write about when you have too many things on your brain and they don't tie together in one subject. You ever have soup in your brain?

So far this holiday season, two of the MAIN projects that I like to do every year have ended up disastrously. Okay, well, maybe that's too strong an adjective, but let's just say they have not turned out the way I wanted.

First my MaMa Kimball's Not Like a Fruitcake Fruitcake. I baked it last night. Now, let it be known that this isn't just any old fruitcake. This cake has none of the nastiness of other fruitcakes. In fact, it's full of only good stuff. And let it also be known that this cake recipe came from a farmer's wife who had the biggest, most prolific pecan tree known to man growing right in her front yard and a husband who had a sweet tooth bigger than the state of Texas. PaPa was a bad diabetic, and he L-O-V-E-D sweets. From syrup to chocolate, he didn't care as long as it was sweet.

So anyway. This cake isn't cheap to bake. It calls for EIGHT cups of pecans. That's right. EIGHT cups. Two pounds of candied fruit. A box of brown sugar. Two tablespoons of vanilla. One-and-a-half cup of coconut. Four eggs. And, of course, self-rising flour. Three cups.

I guess I should've had a premonition of how the cake was going to turn out because when I was mixing it all up, Jeff said why do you make fruitcake. Nobody likes fruitcake. I think he thought I did it just for the heck of it. I informed him that maybe nobody likes fruitcake, but they like the Not Like a Fruitcake Fruitcake. I like it. My kids like it. My mom and dad like it. But my biggest blunder was that I didn't look up to the heavens and dedicate my fruitcake to my sweet MaMa. It just slipped my mind.

Her recipe says to cook the cake for an hour and a half at 300 degrees. That's what I did. The buzzer went off and I took the cake out of the oven. Let it sit for almost an hour before I tried to turn it out of the pan. When I turned it out, only the top half of the cake hit the plate. The bottom half stayed stuck in the pan. It was mush. I was sick. So. I got Jeff to come help me put the top half of the cake back in the pan, stuck it back in the oven for another 30 minutes. Turned the oven off. And went to bed. By that point, I had decided that however it turned out, was the way it was going to be. I couldn't cry over a messed up fruitcake.

This morning I got up and went straight to the oven and took the cake out.
But now I'm too scared to try and get it out of the pan. It may stay in this pan forever.

My Christmas cards. I don't like them. I hate them. I want to spit on them. So if you don't get a Christmas card from the Kellys this year, don't wonder where it is. It just may not be coming.

Cam has a huge SAE project due this Friday. I mean huge, literally and figuratively. He's building a shed. With wood. And nails. And a saw. And when I say he, I really mean he and Jeff. And Jeff's brother Ronnie.

You would hope that a project this size would be worked on over a period of weeks, if not months. But noooooooo. Cam starts working on his Saturday. Five days before it's due in its entirety. Of course, all along the way he had to turn in bits and pieces of it. Like pictures that he made of some old wood in the basement that isn't even going to be part of the project. A blueprint that he made that ended up being altered BIG TIME. You know, you gotta make it look like a lot is going on with it. Ugh.

And best of all, now I'm going to have a homemade by a 17-year-old shed in my backyard. I bet my neighbors will love me more than ever now.

Well, that's my soup for the day. I hope it was your favorite kind and that you didn't burn your tongue reading it.
Till next time.


suzanne said...

Oh, man, I ALWAYS burn my tongue on soup. I know those dang Christmas cards look good, and you better just send them. Don't be one of those perfect-or-nothing kind of people. I can't stand it!!! I almost cried when you were writing about our dear sweet grandparents. I miss them. She would be proud that you at least tried to make her cake, and she would tell you how good it tasted even if it didn't. Love you and please don't spit on the cake or I won't even try it :0)

Theresa said...

You know what? my sweet, precious and most perfect niece... the ugliest cakes taste the best. I can remember my Mama sometimes would make a cake for no reason, it would be hot and we would want to eat it as it slipped and slid off the plate. Oh how I would love to have a piece of her cake:) Holidays bring out soup in all of us. I am wrapping constantly saying to myself as I am doing this- " I am not doing this next year " and next year, I will say it again:) It is yucky out and I had to go to the post office-arrrgggghhhh! But another thing behind me. As I was standing in a long line, there was a Grandmother mailing all of her Christmas gifts to her Grandchildren that she will not get to see. I said a "Thank you Jesus"! and stood patiently. Your soup always taste good to me and brings a smile to my face:) I am having soup for dinner tonight with cornbread. Love you!!!!!

Joyce said...

mama said there'd be days like this, there'd be days like this my mama said! Remember that song? I don't know how to encourage you. lol! Maybe make a gazebo out of the shed? Have a great day and I needed some soup! xoxo

suzanne said...

BTW, only Cam would be building a shed in freezing cold weather with no socks on! He's such a bird :0)

Cindy Lou said...

oh I love soup and honey your soup sounds like mine!! I made a peanut butter cake the other day and it fell all to pieces and the kids loved it...they said it was the best ever!! I bet your cake is great also!! And I had the SAE project...we built a wood hauler(trailer). That was the project that Bradley and Robert was working on last night!! So funny!! Have a great day and the soup was wonderful!! Just my kind!! Love you!!

wendy said...

Oh crap, sorry about your fruitcake. I hate it when I make something --=expensive and time consuming--only to have it NOT WORK OUT.
I mentioned to you on your last post that I LOVE FREAKING LOVE FRUITCAKE.
My mom and grandma always used to make it and it was incredible ---to me.
Christmas cards are --well, a dilema these days. Postage is so expensive just to sign your name on a card. I like the cards of family photos and at least with a little "info" inside.
But, I don't send them. Hmmmmm

billypandnikkysmom said...

sorry about your fruitcake, oh & BTW I love fruitcake so there's one more for your list....sounds like you're "making" the same kind of soup I'm "making" ~ I know you're down on your cake & your cards but you made me smile, so thank you very much! Have a wonderful night!

Tracychele @ The Week-Ender said...

The cake was probably delicious. I hate that it was such an expensive blunder for ya! Pecans are not cheap! Hope Cam's project turns out great. Post pics! Send the cards! I always love your cards. I remember one year the boys were holding drink cans and making silly faces. Everyone is always so proper and you make people laugh! Send them anyway!! Have a wonderful day!

Liz said...

This post cracked me up. Just remember, the only thing that really matters about a cake is how it tastes! At least that's what I always tell myself. :)

Nana said...

Sounds like something that would happen to me. I bet that cake still tates good!!!!1