Thursday, April 21, 2011

Who Was That Woman?

In my trip down memory lane while organizing bins and boxes of very mixed up photos, I found a former endeavor to share in keeping with Sugar & Spice in the land of Balls & Sticks' Throwback Thursday.                                                                                                                                         
I used to decorate cakes...Like all the time.  I put a lot of planning and time into some pretty extensive decorating for friends' showers and, especially, our kids' birthdays.  Whatever their current interest was, they got a cake fashioned to it.  For Princess Bossy's 6th birthday, she even got 2.  She had a cake in the shape of Belle from Beauty and the Beast for the party with her kindergarten friends (the only year she wasn't homeschooled), and another with for the party with cousins and grandparents.  Of course, I can't find the pictures...or remember what the 2nd one was.                                                                                                                                                                                     
I'm not trying to brag, I just had fun.  I was inspired by my mom who did really amazing cake decorating.  She was asked more than a few times to do wedding cakes for people.  I found further help in studying the The Wilton Pictorial Encyclopedia of Modern Cake Decorating book she had, and my childhood favorite, Cut-Up Cakes.  The latter was put out by Baker's to encourage the use of their flaked coconut, which I loved, and had cute and fun ideas for cutting cakes and reorganizing them into animals, toys, and other fun things.  It's a super-easy way to make a very impressive cake.                                                                                                         

My personal favorite was my own version of a cut-up cake, a dump truck for Prince Stoic's 6th birthday.  I started with with the understructure... A carefully shaped piece of thin Melamine that sat on five pieces of 2 x 2 lumber to serve as support and axles.  Oreo cookies stuck, with a dab of frosting, on the ends of those foil-wrapped 'axles' completed that look easily.                                                                                                                      
I think you can tell, generally, from the shape of the cake, how they were cut and stacked to form the truck and the dump trailer.  2 colors of base frosting, some not-very-complex piped-on details, and a foil bumper created a truck out of the blocks of cake.  More Oreos, but crumbs this time, finished the cake off with a convincing act as dirt.  --So convincing, in fact, that one of the party guests, a fairly sensitive young man, told his mom he just didn't want to eat dirt and wouldn't believe that it was cookie.                                                                                                        
Hubby laughs at me for keeping the wood understructure pieces.  He doesn't believe I'll ever use them again, but I told him we might have a grandson who likes dump trucks some day...and he just laughed some more.  Now, if anyone sees this and is able to thrill their own special prince because of making a similar cake, it was worth the little bit of storage it has occupied.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      
I looked at the many pictures as I rifled through, wondering what happened to that woman who went to all that trouble and had so much passion for those cakes....Then I noticed that as the cakes got simpler, there were photos of 4-H, then Little League, more babies, Bible quizzing, youth group activities, and a house to build... 
The best part was seeing that when I started to pull back, the kids started to insist on trying some cake decorating of their own.  One way or the other, I know my grandchildren will have some cool birthday cakes!

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