I think I was turning 3. Mom curled my hair and put it on top of my head, which was very fancy, and I was wearing a plaid dress. We were having a party and set everything up and then went to pick up the cake. As Mom drove past a sorority house facing Fairview Park near the Millikin campus, a girl hit us. I don't remember it being a particularly gruesome fender-bender, but the handle on a car door came off. I don't know if the cake survived. I was sitting on the floor of the passenger side of the car then, and I remember being relatively calm and everyone being nice. Mom went into the sorority and called her friends (because toddlers can't wait!). Maybe they ran to the A&P and got a sheet cake to add to the ice cream. In any event, the party went on without us, but some of the fierce partiers like Ric Blankenburg and his Mom Sherry stayed until we got home.
The year I turned 16, the Madells came over and we had a feast of crab legs in the dining room, got out the good china and crystal. I received chalk pastels and good paper and lots of other cool art supplies.
I'm pretty sure the do-it-yourself chocolate chip cake was 1976, because I recall some red and blue sprinkles and frosting. I was very into the Bicentennial. Before the days of chocolate chip cake mix... well, what happens if you dump some chocolate chips into vanilla cake batter is that the chips sink to the bottom of the cake and make a sort of molten chocolate bar there -- still very delicious, but the cake is very difficult to slice.