January 20th, 2010
When I was about eight, my mother took a cake decorating class. She was a housewife, and I was lucky to have her at home all the time, doing mom-type things. I have no idea how long this cake-phase lasted, but it made an indelible impression on me.
For what seemed like a glorious, golden stretch of time, but which was probably just half a year, we constantly had fancy cakes in the house. Not just Duncan Hines box mix crap, but made-from-scratch cakes, topped off with the most beautifully frosted designs.
I remember distinctly cakes themed with a four-leaf clover for St. Patrick's Day, a lion for my dad's birthday, and a bouquet of flowers with "Welcome Spring!" I also vaguely remember nagging her for a custom cake for my birthday.
It was SO much fun. I loved to look at the pretty designs, lick the frosting off the plastic cake decorations, and just marvel at the thought that MY mom could make stuff just for ME.
My mom continues to bake as one of her hobbies. She has always been a good baker. Me, not so much. I've become a good cook, but cooking and baking are two different animals. I think all they share in common is the kitchen, and high heat. In cooking, you can substitute and improvise. In baking, it's so exact and specific. I shunned baking after a few lackluster attempts.
That is, until I met Lani Sonan and Lori Tamashiro when the Cake Creations Dessert Haven co-owners were guests on the KHNL morning show.
Little did I know they would change the course of my confectionary life. They brought the most beauuuutiful cakes. I wanted to learn how to make that!
I'm not really sure what about their cakes did it, since I don't live in a cave, and I have viewed other pretty cakes before. I think it was a convergence of two things: 1) Having a child; and 2) having an extended conversation with them, rather than just the normal, brief interaction of ordering a cake over the counter. I raved about their skills and they insisted I, too, could learn it via their classes. Really?!? Never occurred to me before. Cool!
Their classes (a series of five month-long classes) are all at night, so I told them I'd sign up when I got off the morning shift. When I was working the morning show I'd go to sleep at 7 p.m. I didn't realize that I'd be off the morning show sooner than I expected, but oh well. That just means I could sign up for a winter class.
It's something I want to do for Olivia. I have happy memories of my mom's cakes, and the joy it brought me (and my dad, of course!). I want to give that to my daughter. So for her sake, I'm going to force myself to like baking. The decorating part is fun, and I'm creative.
Here we go on a new hobby!
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