It’s just smoke and mirrors…

We’ve been keeping things, for the most part, pretty lighthearted in our writings here.  I think, mostly, because things get so stressful.  Things get so stressful at times, when we’re doing a cake, that we try to keep a sense of humor about things.  We’re hoping that we can entertain you with our pictures and our writings and, perhaps, even put a bright spot in your day.  Many of you have posted comments here and on facebook about how you love to look at our pictures.  Thank you for that.  It pleases us to know that we bring enjoyment to you by doing what we’re doing.

We love to look at pictures of cakes too.  We spend a great deal of time looking at pictures on the internet in an effort to learn, perfect our technique and be inspired by sugar artists who are much better at this than we are.  We know that we still have a lot to learn and we always welcome new challenges.

When we take on a new cake project we have learned to be much more methodical than when we first started.  If you have ever watched Ace of Cakes, you’ve seen them having their weekly staff meetings where each person gets their assignments.  What Megan and I do is very much like that, except its just the two of us, obviously.  I do most of the baking and fondant.  Megan is buttercream and all of the piping, and, oftentimes, fillings.  We work together on the gumpaste creations.  I love to do the roses and flowers and Megan is interested more in the detail and finishing work.  A lot of times, I bake and fondant and hand the cake to Megan as if it were a blank canvas and she makes it come to life.  We seem to complement each other pretty well in that way.  Our interests lie in different aspects of the process.

Megan and I have always been very close.  She is the eldest of my three daughters and, therefore, the first to really become my friend as an adult.  We share many of the same interests, thus, the whole cake thing evolved.  When I mentioned that things get stressful during the process, however, that is an understatement.  Megan and I are very different in our perspectives.  I am the visionary and she is the skeptic, so, when things get stressful, we are not always on the same page.  We go back and forth, trying to talk each other in, or out of, how to do things a certain way.  Our otherwise close relationship has really been tested as we strategize and implement our project plans.  If you can believe it, there have been times when we have vowed to not do another cake.  Even though it gets intense, bottom line is that we really are good for each other.  I help her step into the clouds and she helps keep my feet on the ground..

But, then, the cake is finished, and we stand back and look at it and realize that we love this so much that we will do it again and again and again.  We love each other enough to have a sense of humor about ourselves, and our cakes.  We know that this is a season and, in some ways, even the stress has drawn us closer than ever before.  We love each other enough to know that when this season is over, we will still be mother and daughter who are good, good friends.

We have involved other members of the family as well, Bethie is quality control and creative consultant and Jeremy is helping us with the things that we need to know if we decide to do this as a business (especially since he has a degree in marketing and business management).  Rick has helped with delivery at times and Gracie is always happy to do a tasting.  LOL.

When we have a big project, like a wedding or a tiered cake, it usually takes us at least a week.  We have to schedule the gum paste, fondant, filling and baking.  Although we are thrilled that Megan will be teaching full-time again, we will certainly have to be much more careful with our scheduling.  We still plan to take on projects, we’ll just have to time things a little differently.

We plan to use this coming year as a testing time to see whether we could really make this whole business thing fly or not.  We want to continue to learn and grow and perfect.  We realize that fondant icing is a very popular trend right now and just as any trend gets popular, it also fades away.

It has occurred to us, on more than one occasion, that we spend hours creating something that can be gone in just a matter of moments.  Sometimes, very intense concentration and effort goes into our creations, and yet, they are not something that was meant to last forever.  We expend an incredible amount of energy on something that is temporary.  Not only are they temporary, they are as fragile as anything can be.  They are made of sugar.  One drop of water has the potential to destroy them.  We are investing ourselves into something that is all just smoke and mirrors.  It’s okay, though, we’ve already invested ourselves into something that will last for eternity and that is our relationship with our Heavenly Father.

So we thought that you’d like to know a little more about the inner workings of our process.  We’ll keep baking and decorating as long as the Lord allows this season in our lives.  And we’ll keep writing about it hoping that it entertains and brings a smile.

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3 responses

  1. I think you could totally turn this into a business. I have been telling friends about you here in Texas and showing them your pictures, and the first thing they say after seeing your cakes is, “That’s AMAZING!!! Aww man, too bad they aren’t from around here…” 🙂

  2. Love your cake creations! I’ve experienced the grand arrival of a wonderful cake. I’ve oohed and aahed at the intricate details and creative expression. And I’ve sat back and thought, “I can’t eat that. It’s too beautiful!” But then the party guests stare in eager anticipation. And then we sink our teeth into the cake and delight in the complete “yumminess” of the cake. Your cakes are beautiful and deelish!

    But your perspective is even more wonderful. You love your Lord and delight in all things eternal. Continue your creative endeavors with your eye on the Great Creator!

  3. thanks ladies!!! you have both been so encouraging!! as a matter of fact, i just can’t believe how supportive people have been. anne, i have to say that ethan’s response was one of the best yet!!!! we were so happy to do the cake for him. it’s doing cakes for people like you and your family that make this so much fun.

    ~wendy~

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