The Suspicious Disappearance of Raspberry Torte

RIP, Raspberry. We'll miss your fuschia hair and your cankles.

If you’d asked me a few years ago, I would have told you 4 year olds drag around baby dolls and cook play food. They do . . . but there’s also an awful lot of murder mystery going on. . . .

As I folded towels while Sally was in the bath, I learned that Raspberry Torte (of the Strawberry Shortcake gang) was missing. She disappeared while her friends Orange Blossom and Strawberry Shortcake briefly left the house to buy party supplies. Neither Miss Blossom nor Miss Shortcake called the police, which should automatically make them suspects (Yeah watch out, I sometimes watchΒ Law and Order reruns). In fact, nothing came to the attention of the authorities until Lemon Meringue nearly drowned in the bathtub.

“Help, help!” I hear her shriek. “MOMMY! Do Strawberry’s voice.”


“Not like that, do it REAL.” (That’s preschool direction for ‘from the top, with feeling!’)

So, with charisma, I play along and eventually Lemon confesses she recently escaped from a shark’s stomach. But–insert ominous music–Raspberry was there, too. She and Lemon argued over which, er, “direction” to exit the animal. I didn’t ask for details, but suffice it to say they took separate paths and only Lemon emerged. Sally, wide-eyed: “Raspberry is STILL. IN. THE. SHARK. …Probably. Lemon just swam away so she doesn’t know for sure.”

Lemon’s kind of a jerk.

We try desperately to think of a way to rescue our pink-haired friend. All of my plans are useless, natch. Sally’s plans–which typically include Lemon Meringue gliding across the water on a bar of soap like it’s a chariot (MY plans are dumb?!)–are well crafted, but ultimately fruitless. Sally announces that we must give up the search.

WHAT?! I think of the Chilean miners, and the fact that we live in an earthquake “black zone” and my kid will probably try to dig me out of the rubble that once was our house for, oh about seven minutes, and then give me up for dead. So I stress that surely we can find some way to rescue Raspberry.

No. We cannot. Even though this clearly makes it look like the berry gang set the whole thing up and the congressman is in on it, I have no ground to stand on. The bathtub is Sally’s jurisdiction, I’m like the city police up against the FBI (I’m telling you, Law and Order). She begins to climb out of the bath and says, with the chilling steadiness of an officer who has seen this sad outcome all too often: “But it’s okay. In every home and in every cafΓ©, they will hang a picture of Raspberry Torte.”

Um, okay, I need to check my Tivo because I’m starting to think Sally has been watching Law and Order.

**** This is my 100th post! Who’d have thought I’d be so annoyingly persistent? To help me celebrate, write a comment telling me which post is your favorite. (You don’t have to know the title, just tell me “the one where…”) This will help me learn what readers like the best, AND I’ll put all the commenter names into a hat and draw one to win a prize. Oooh, exciting! [Drawing will happen on December 15. Comments must be submitted before the 15th.]****


39 responses to “The Suspicious Disappearance of Raspberry Torte

  1. Ass hair and the embee family prehistoric nightmare are awesome! Love your posts!

  2. Ok my favorite is the one where Sally wore the sign outside and waved. I would also like to mention that I love prizes. And I think it’s time for Sally to begin law school. Or at least mock trial.

  3. Ass Hair and Princess Boob Grab

  4. The one where Sally tells the protesters to “get a job”! Though “Craptastic Crafts” wins best title.

  5. The one with “Ass Hair” πŸ™‚

  6. This is the only post I have read so far and it is awesome!

  7. The one when you tried putting on the spray tan still has me giggling πŸ™‚

  8. Ooooh, choices choices. I loved the one where your internet died and you couldn’t function. I also got a huge chuckle out of the description of your bag, with the lovely picture of the shriveled, unrecognizable tangerine! Resembled so many scary items I have fished out of the bottom of my bottomless pit mommy bags. You have such a hilarious way of describing daily crap as a mom…thanks for cracking me up Summer and keep going. We need you!!!

  9. I just discovered you this morning, but I’m sure *this* post would be my favorite (until another one is written and I read that.) This is great – you should be writing for a big time mag. WP is great, but I think you can go bigger πŸ™‚ Thanks for the chuckles so early this morning!

  10. Ooh – ooh – Midol for kids! Or boob grab. Or the spider one. Or the one where the small ones are taking over the bed =)

  11. My favorite was the hardest jobs. Mom should easily be at the top of that list. Sing it sista!!

  12. Love them all, Summer – but I laughed out loud at the one where the hubby told her β€œWe should roll down the windows and yell β€˜Get a job.’ β€œ Just. Awesome.

  13. I need to read the get a job post.. that sounds classic!!!

  14. I love them all. I like the sandwich board. I wish I was around to honk and wave. Instead it is below freezing and we are stuck inside…again!

  15. I know I love all of them and there are definitely some that made me laugh out loud, but I do not have the brain cells to remember exactly which ones they were! I do like your drawings and liked the picture of you all in bed. I just read through Short Stuff too, and those comments are *hilarious*. It’s wonderful that you’re keeping that list. πŸ™‚ I love Sally!

  16. “Interview with a 4 year old” was my favorite recent post because it’s short and punchy and well-formatted (bold is beautiful). I also loved the “hardest jobs” post because it sorts made you famous πŸ™‚

  17. I like the Thanksgiving post – with everything you’re thankful for, followed by the picture of Mommy when she’s angry. I can just imagine picking that one up from school (and expect Nate will be taking home a similar drawing in a couple years!).

  18. I’ve gotta say, “Hey, get a job” was my favorite. It made me literally laugh at loud and my husband look at me like I’m nuts.

  19. I actually loved your post today! So witty you are. It’s not surprising that your daughter has a way with words herself. Really, do you KNOW how good of a writer you are. I found myself not wanting this post to end. Thanks for the chuckle I needed today!

  20. “Get a job!!!” had me peeing myself. But I do that a lot after 2 kids. xoxo

  21. Get a job! is my favorite! (tough choice though…) Also, can family members win the prize?! πŸ™‚

  22. Summer – love so many – but the itsy bitsy spider/hairdo post and the one were Sally starts talking to her forth-coming bowel movement in the mini-van had me cackling. Always look forward to them. Congrats on your milestone!

  23. The one where you described killing the spider? bug? in the bathroom. I think if every time I kill something. So perfectly executed. I am amazed at how you capture thoughts and emotions and put them into very relatable stories!

  24. I love them all. I am am mom of 14 month old twin boys and I laugh at the things I have to look forward too – but worry about their “boy versions” πŸ™‚ I stumbled across your blog when the worst jobs post was featured on WP and I linked it to my facebook and shared it with everyone I know – I really did love that one. It was awesome!! All your posts are great, you keep us all smiling.

  25. I Love all your post : ) One of my favorite the one with Sallys Calico Critter photo visual.

  26. Without a doubt the one with the picture ‘mommy when she’s angry,’ it made me giggle hysterically with my own mother who I came to visit for the festive season… and prompted some similar artworks I did those 20 years ago when I was the same age… Thanks for that.


  27. What? I have to choose?

    I like all posts with Sally dialog… or Summer illustrations… or Sally’s preschool crafts. Off the top of my head, my favorites are:
    – The spider one
    – Sally’s Gifts (the one with the GIANT googly eyed portrait and 5 foot lanyard keychain)

    Yay! Happy 100th! Keep ’em coming!

  28. You are hilarious! Congratulations on your 100th post, what an achievement. I know how hard it is to carve out some mommy-me time to write, (she says while trying to load the dryer, turn on the dishwasher, yell at some random child and finish her coffee…).
    – Emily

  29. Summer, you are hilarious. I love when I stumble upon your blog and there are a lot of entries for me to catch up on. Thanks facebook! I keep thinking about the sandwich board one too. I wish curtis would do something like that.

  30. Congratulations on hitting triple figures! I, too, have hit triple figures, but unfortunately, mine were on a bathroom scale….

    Seriously, though, I loved your piece on Sally’s first day at Preschool. It was nice to know I wasn’t alone.

    Keep up the excellent work, Summer. We’re expecting the same stellar standards in the next 100!

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