Friday, August 10, 2012

Wedding Day Blues

     Years ago when I was much younger, steadier and before arthritis took over, I was a cake decorator.  It started out very simple after my son was born I wanted to be able to make him cute birthday cakes.    I mentioned it to a friend who happened to be the county home extension agent.  She thought that sounded like fun so for 6 weeks the two of us drove to Louisville 2 or 3 times a week to take lessons.    The classes were so much fun and, much to my surprise, I found that I was rather good at it.

     After Jerri and I finished the classes, I looked for every reason I could find to decorate a cake; family birthdays, friends' birthdays, holidays, etc. etc..    Before I knew it I was getting requests from complete strangers to bake cakes for them.    The more I did, the more I enjoyed.

     Since Jerri was the one who set up classes and demonstrations for the homemakers groups in the county she asked me if I would teach cake decorating classes.  That proved to be so much fun that we offered them several more times following that.  Several years later I offered classes on my own a few times and had a great response.  

     During this time, the requests for cakes birthdays, anniversaries, showers, etc had increased and it was only a matter of time until I was asked to do a wedding cake.  Even though the thought of not only baking and decorating, but also having to transport and set up a cake terrified me, it was also exciting and challenging.  Sure, why not, I thought.  One led to another and soon I had done several.  Thus brings me to the wedding day from hell (only for me, not the bride and groom, I hope!).
     It was Friday night.  The wedding was to be on Saturday.    The cake was baked and frosted and all  I would have to do on Saturday morning was decorate it, then deliver and set up.  But, first things first; it was Friday night and we were having a house full of company for a card party.  I had prepared all kinds of appetizers and snacks for my guest.  All that was left was to slice the country ham for the ham & biscuits.  Piece of cake, right?  Wrong!  While slicing the ham with an electric knife, the middle finger on my right hand got in the way.  Ouch!  Neat little slice right down the middle of my finger, through nail and all.  And company will be here soon!  Once I got the bleeding to stop, I wrapped it up to get me through the party, during which it throbbed unrelentingly.  Next morning I went to the doctor and ended up with 5 stitches in the end of my finger, covered by a metal shield and wrapped to where I couldn't bend my fingers.  Did I mention I am right handed?

     Returning home I am in a panic.  Not only am I running late on decorating this wedding cake but now I only have one hand; one that I am not very adept at using.   What to do?     I had no choice.  I had a bride and groom waiting on this cake and I had to deliver.  I called my mother-in-law to come help (which, by the way, she had taken one of my classes) and between the two of us the cake got done.  I had never decorated a cake left handed before but somehow, with her help, I managed it.  Now came the delivery.

     I had borrowed my sister's station wagon and put foam down in the back to hold the cake in place.  This was a home wedding and the bride had given me directions to get there.  These people were complete strangers and their home was in a part of the county that I am not familiar with and had never been before.  To say it was a long way down in the boonies would be putting it mildly.  Down hills, around curves, on a gravel road, with no civilization in sight.  It was the hottest day of the year and I was afraid the cake would melt before we got there.  Finally we get there.  It's at least a couple of hours before the wedding.  The wedding is to be held in the outside and the bride wants the cake set up in the yard.  I tried to explain to her that it was the hottest day of the year and by the time the wedding started she wouldn't have a cake left.  It had to be put in the house where it was air-conditioned.  She  was very determined and it took the mother of the bride to finally convince her.  Eventually, I get the cake into the kitchen, fix a few flowers that had fallen off and explain to the mother how to set it up when they move it outside.   Then, I was out of there!  What happened after that was up to them.  I hope it all went well.

Until next time...that's my view.
Kat














12 comments:

  1. WOW, you are amazing!! I am so impressed by your cake decorating skills. :D You are very talented. ♥

    Kathy
    http://gigglingtruckerswife.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you Kathy. I really enjoyed it at the time but there is no way I could do it now!

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  2. whew! what an adventure... glad you got your part done. :)

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    1. It really was an adventure. If it hadn't been for my MIL I would never have gotten through it. I was so glad when it was over. That was the most stressful wedding cake I did.

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  3. Wedding cakes would be way too much pressure for me. Sounds like you handled it just fine.

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    1. I was much younger then Connie. I couldn't do it now. I loved it at the time.

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  4. Oh my gosh! I love your cakes and am not at all surprised that you have yet another talent, undisclosed to us! ;-)

    An artist is an artist, just give her a tool!

    This is a really good write, btw...I found myself getting tense for you.
    Another great job. ♥

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    1. Thank you Jo. That is one of my hidden talents that I am proud of. It gave me a lot of joy. I loved teaching classes in it. Unfortunately, it is a long gone talent. I have too much arthritis in my hands now to grip the decorating bag and too much in my back to stand over a cake for that long. It was fun back then!

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  5. Oh Lord Kat, I tried a wedding cake, but only because my step daughter is so easy going a collapsed cake wouldn't ruin her day. The darn thing had so much internal hardware a bulldozer couldn't have knocked it over, but never, never, would I have tried a cake left handed. You are amazing.

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    1. You are right about the hardware. By the time you get them all rigged up they are so heavy you can hardly lift them. Luckily, I only had to do one left handed and I couldn't have done it without my MIL. I loved doing it at the time but sure couldn't do it now. I'm sure yours was beautiful.

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  6. Some of those cakes are really nice. Have you stopped taking orders now because of pain. That is a shame because you are good at it.
    www.thoughtsofpaps.com

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  7. Thank you Paps. Yes, I haven't decorated any cakes in a few years now. I don't think I could do it anymore. I don't have enough strength in my hands.

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