I started with a sketch of what I wanted. Then I cheated a little with white, box cake mixes. It takes two to fill a 9"x13" pan. For a moist texture, I prefer Duncan Hines with pudding, and shave 3-5 minutes off the recommended baking time. Once the cake was throughly cooled, I frosted it and added Oreo halves to line the bottom.
The race track is crushed Oreos. The birthday boy had a great time mashing them for me. (I need to remember this activity for one of those long summer days I know are coming.)
The grass is shredded coconut dyed green. The lines on the road are long strips of coconut held in place with a little frosting. The flags are printed paper glued to toothpicks.
Next I staged my son's toy cars. Lighting McQueen is racing to the finish, while Tow Mater is towing Pacer from the track. Red sprinkes cover the still blank area at the top.
Completed cake with a too cool #4 candle and Happy Birthday Wishes over the red sprinkles. The kids loved it!
I also made marshmallow pops using jumbo marshmallows dipped in red candy melts and blue sprinkes. Too sweet for my taste, but naturally a hit with the kids.
For an added bonus, a lady we know made a cardboard Lightning McQueen. He served as a decorative item and we used him as a backdrop for pictures.
But of course the pièce de résistance was this...
It was a great day. And even though the ferocious wind storm made our paper decorations ineffectual, which in turn made me cry because I'd spent so much time making them, everyone enjoyed themselves. And I relearnt that's what matters most.