Sometimes it’s really easy to write the blog. The more cakes we do, the more cakes we have to write about. The flip side, though, is when we don’t have a lot of cakes to do, there isn’t much to write about. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy writing and just living life is fodder for the keyboard, but since this is a cake blog, we try to stick to the subject at hand (although I occasionaly digress about my crazy puppy, Thistle). I do have a top ten list for parenting teenagers that I plan to publish at some point but that will have to wait until the summer when Megan is in Slovakia.
We haven’t had any cake orders since the beginning of December. It was nice to have a little break through the Christmas season. It gave us the opportunity to experiment with royal icing and sugar cookies, although when we have the time to experiment we always come away with more ideas than we are able to satisfy in one sitting, and more ideas always lead to the need for more equipment, and more equipment means that we need to do more cakes because that is how we pay for new equipment. So maybe free time isn’t always a good thing.
Other than watch a few episodes of Ace of Cakes, we haven’t done any ‘caking.’ But last week we were working on three cakes, two for last week and one for this week. One cake ended up getting postponed but we still put the time into working on it. Also, Megan’s birthday is this week and I will be working on her cake as well, which, I might add, will be weird. She’s my partner and it will be odd to do a cake without her. Bethie, my middle daughter, has agreed to spend the day helping me. Bethie is a great help because she’s been an extra pair of hands for us many times before and she knows the ropes.
So the title of this particular blog is, “Top Ten Things that I didn’t count on when doing cakes.” Although I don’t really care for David Letterman, we’ll do it like he does his top ten lists and start with number 10. I’ve rambled long enough, let’s get to it.
Disclaimer: Please, please, please understand, we are not, in the least bit, prideful about what we do. As a matter of fact, when I look at our pictures, whether here or on Facebook, I CANNOT believe the cakes that we have done. It’s ridiculous. I mean, how did this all happen?! I CANNOT believe that God has given us the opportunity to do these kinds of cakes. I mean, I always wanted to take a Wilton buttercream class but just never seemed to have the opportunity to do that. Yeah…I guess I don’t really feel the need to do that now. Anyway, when I talk about our cakes being popular, it’s just because I’m amazed by it all.
Number 10 – I never counted on the fact that our cakes would be so popular. Wherever we go, people want to talk about cakes with us. Since we love to talk about cakes, we’re always happy to talk to anyone who wants to listen. I’m always surprised when we talk about a particular cake and people seem to know exactly which cake we’re talking about just by seeing the pictures on Facebook or here on the blog. Megan has also started linking the blog to Pinterest. Wow.
Number 9 – I never counted on the fact that working out our cake relationship would be so difficult for Megan and I. Cakes became a crucible for our relationship; turn up the heat in any situation and even the best of relationships can be strained. Its like we were on this ship, heading into uncharted waters and, until we figured out what each of us was supposed to be doing to keep the ship afloat, it became pretty stressful. Megan was in the cabin with charts and graphs and I was on deck with my hand on the rutter and we just didn’t understand who was supposed to do what or how. We figured it out, finally, and now we move in tandem. After all the months of ironing out our roles and cake ideology, we sail together quite happily now. We’ve learned so much, and not just about cakes.
Number 8 – I never counted on the fact that we would need so much equipment. When we first started doing cakes I would go to the cupboard and pull out whatever cake pan I thought would work for the cake that we were doing, after all, these cake pans were my friends. I’d used them for years. Then, Bethie bought me my first Wilton 8 inch round pan. As new requests came in, I needed another pan, and another, to suit the needs of each cake. Now I have a box that I keep all my cake pans in and the cake pans that I have used for years stay in the cupboard. When we have a cake to do for someone, we only use the pans that we have purchased to make cakes, and that’s just the pans. I’m planning on a separate blog just to talk about our other tools and how they have taken over the den.
Number 7 – I never counted on how stressful it would be to make a cake for someone’s special occasion.
Number 6 – I never counted on how much I would enjoy making a cake for someone’s special occasion.
Number 5 – I never counted on how much I would enjoy people’s responses when they see their cakes for their special occasion.
Number 4 – I never counted on writing a blog about our cakes.
Number 3 – I never counted on how much time was involved in making a cake. Its not just about the baking. We’ve already talked, here in the blog, about starting gumpaste components weeks before the cake is actually due. Baking is actually one of the last parts of the process. I love our ‘cake talks’ though, the planning sessions where Megan and I brainstorm about how to handle each cake.
Number 2 – I never counted on our cakes showing up on a Google search. Yeah, that was a little weird.
Number 1 – I never counted on the number of people who have encouraged us and supported us with our cakes. We’ve had people tell us, over and over, how much they enjoy looking at our pictures and reading the blog. Thank you. No, really. Thank you. Do you know how much it means to us? It makes us want to keep baking, and fondant-ing, and writing, and posting pictures and……you get the picture.
Maybe, someday, you’ll come into our little shop, and we’ll talk cakes. We’ll give you a free cup of coffee, just because we love people and we love coffee and combining those two are one of our favorite things to do. Maybe you’ll lean over the counter and look into the display case and choose a cake to take home, or maybe order a special cake for someone that you love. Maybe we’ll have pictures all over the walls of the cakes that we have done. There will be little tables, and warm colors, and cozy corners to read in.
We don’t have a shop, not even close, but we can dream can’t we? After all, I never counted on enjoying making cakes enough to want my own shop.
P.S. Thistle update: Thistle is no longer sequestered from the other dogs. She is so happy to have new sisters and I’m sure that you can tell from this picture, Jemma is thrilled as well.
As a matter of fact, Jemma told me the other day that she thinks she’s too old to have a puppy in the house. Believe me, Jemma, I know exactly how you feel. Seriously, yes, it’s true, I’ve relinquished a corner of my heart to Thistle…..and so has Jemma.