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The Case of the Missing Cake

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


I love to read.  I still remember,  when I was kid, the joy and thrill of opening a new Nancy Drew book and the anticipation of h

elping Nancy, George and Bess solve another mystery.  I was in love with those characters.  Nancy was smart, pretty, drove a red sports car and didn't ever have to work except solve her mysteries.  George was athletic and strong and I always

secretly wished I was more like her.  And Bess was  the  character I could relate most to. She loved to eat and was always enjoying cakes and cookies and treats.  I think I read every Nancy Drew book that Carolyn Keene wrote.

I've been thinking about these books recently, because I have my own mystery happening in my house right now.  The Case  of the Missing Christmas Cake. My mom makes the best (the very best) Christmas cake in the whole  world. She makes it on Labour Day weekend every year and all fall she soaks it in

rum.  She mails a cake to my sister in Vancouver.   I get mine and all is good.   When Madeline was about 4 years old I got my Christmas cake at Thanksgiving (in case we didn't see them before Christmas).  I seem to recall it was a very busy, stressful fall, or it rained a lot, or  I was just really hungry and so I regularly treated myself to a piece of the cake as part of a little afternoon treat.  Sometime in the first 2 weeks of

December my husband, daughter, a few friends  and I were putting up our Christmas tree and my husband suggested we crack open Grandmas Christmas cake and have a piece.  I had to admit I had already eaten it.  I'm telling you, it was  a stressful fall, or it was cold or the mice ate part of it. I can't really remember.  But my husband was not amused and has ever let me forget it.  Every year I do eat more than my share of the cake, but I figure my mom made it and so it is ok.  This past Thanksgiving my mom gave me our annual cake.  As usual I was excited and ready to crack into it on the drive

home.  My husband and daughter gave me a really hard time as we bantered back and forth about the date that we would actually open it and start to eat  it  What I didn't realize was that when we got home from the Thanksgiving weekend, my husband and daughter hid the cake somewhere  in our

house.  I've looked high and low and can't find it anywhere.  I called my dad who has 52 year s of experience of finding hidden cakes, shortbread, mincemeat pies etc. and he said to me "reckon I could find it if I was up there."  He is a master detective.    I know that I am becoming one.  We

just never know what new skills we are going to develop as our lives unfold.

To the Editor,

In response to Lynda Shadbolt's recent "Case of the missing cake" column, I wish to submit the "view from Acton."

Along with the parental units, Lynda kindly agreed to pick me up from the airport for our pre-Christmas visit. After several wrong turns just outside the airport, we soon realized we were very lost. As tempers began to rise, my dad came up with the solution ... the first one to figure out the way home would be treated to a piece of Christmas cake. It's amazing what a

little incentive can do.  While I tried to figure out the GPS on my phone, Lynda's sense of direction kicked in (finally!). She turned the car around, went through never-before-seen subdivisions, and within minutes we were seeing familiar sites. We were on our way home!

So my suggestion to Jim is this. If Lynda can find her way home from Toronto for Christmas cake, it's just a matter of time for her to sniff out your stash. Don't fall for her "I can't find it." Move it frequently, or move it out of the house, man.  Perhaps a locked cabinet at your school might work? Or maybe some of the

good people of Haliburton might host it in an effort to keep it safe for you.

Good luck!

Judy Shadbolt

Vancouver/Acton

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