Sunday, January 31, 2010

Whirlwind couple of weeks!

I know I resolved to post regularly, but it has been a crazy few weeks! Let's start off with my grandmother's birthday.

A little back story - my dad's sister has been decorating cakes for as long as I can remember. She is old school - even though she's a sweetheart, she only decorates using the Wilton method - buttercream stars, no fondant, whatsoever. She has made every cake for every big family occassion, and I have never said anything to outshine her. Well, New Year's day, we're all at her house to celebrate Christmas with my other aunt who was in from out of town. We were discussing Nanny's birthday party which was coming up, and my Nanny leans over and says to me in front of people, "I want you to make my birthday cake". To which I replied I'd love to, but didn't want to step on any toes. My grandmother then added, "It is my birthday, I want one of your beautiful cakes, and that's all there is to it". I spoke with my aunt who agreed that my grandmother should get what she wants. I did compromise and offered to let my aunt help me, because I know she likes watching me work with fondant. Unfortunately, my uncle landed in the hospital (he's fine now) and she couldn't make it to help.

The original design was supposed to be a two tiered topsy turvy. I got a little too pre-occupied with another guitar cake, didn't pay attention to how I was carving Nanny's cake, and totally botched the top tier causing it to tip over. I switched the design up a little to make it appealing as just one tier, but we still had plenty of cake, even with huge servings. Here is the final product:

The cake was lemon with white chocolate buttercream. The lettering was done using the cricut (my new favourite toy), and the daisies were all made using gumpaste.

Last week was a rough one. We were getting ready to celebrate my wife's 30th birthday. Early in the week my mom called to tell me her uncle (who along with my great-aunt were a third set of grandparents) was in the hospital. The last time I saw him, he wasn't looking well, but refused to ever see a doctor. I didn't expect him to make it to Christmas, but he did. We learned that he had advanced lung cancer, and on the day they were to set him up for home care, he passed away. He lived a good life, and touched many people with his infectious sense of humor and wisdom.

On the bright side, last week also marked an advancement in my cake career - I booked 2 more corporate jobs. This week, I also struck a deal to possibly start teaching at the shop where I buy many of my supplies. Keep your fingers crossed. This weekend is crazy busy - not only am I working on Valentine items to sell, one of my corporate orders, and baking for a Haiti relief bake sale (Lobster tails and eclairs), I had a very good friend and customer order 3 cakes on Thursday for a Saturday pickup. The easiest was the Princess and the frog photocake. I also did these:

This cake was two tiered red velevet with vanilla buttercream, and the fondant was airbrushed in antique gold. Lettering was done using the cricut again. The letters were then dusted with black disco dust. The billiard balls were also made with fondant.

This cake was definitely a first! My customer said here cousin was requestuing this type of cake because she was turning "Dirty-One". By no means am I a shy person, but this request did make me blush a little. I am just wondering how she liked it!

That is all for now - I'm off to the store to get some Rice Krispies to make an edible 3D Elmo for a cake next week. I'll post all about it next week.

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