Icing on the cake

Our Belle’s activity last night was cup cake decorating and what fun we had! I am simply astounded by the many gadgets and gizmos that are available it feels like child’s play! 
It was lovely to have an excuse to bake cup cakes, I miss my children being young as we often baked cakes together. These came out quite well although their peaks might just have to be cut off. 

Oh my, this takes me back to my days of making birthday cakes for my children, I once made a lot of Pokemon creatures for my son’s tenth birthday. 
I was not sure about the colours that were available from the store so I chose smaller quantities and then mixed in my own colour. It was supposed to be vintage – so I chose pale green, pale blue and pink. It was such great fun and I had not even arrived at the meeting! 
I can also give you a little glimpse of my vintage china I picked up at a local sale this weekend. This is a little corner of a beautiful art Deco plate. 
I could not resist the beautiful design – it reminds me of the embroidery patterns that were abundant in the 1930’s – and I like to dream about having a cottage garden one day! 
I had such fun making the circle of little flowers – less is more is not a philosophy I ascribe to more of the ‘how can I fill the space with as much as possible’ 

The pink icing was used with a stencil rolling pin – I love the raised daisy design.  
The green and white Gerbera  was a mould I have had for a long time but I had not really played with it much. It is so effective – I like the combination of the white and green. 
The blue plate is a small cake plate my son gave me for mothers day years ago. 
The quilted design was from a press, it was amazingly easy! 
I had the little button makers – I cannot resist adding a sewing theme to my baking! 
The lady running the event had some gorgeous little cutters, these little hearts are tiny! 
The butterfly moulds were also easy to use, and I lightly dusted this one with edible glitter to highlight the delicate design. 
I found this sandwich plate in a vintage shop recently, it matches my rosebud tea set!
Someone’s birthday is coming up soon, just the perfect excuse for more fun.
Can’t let all that effort go to waste! 

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We are all a little fragile

I used to read lots of blogs, in fact I had subscribed to so many there was hardly enough time for me to write my own! I would create a new project, photograph it and be all enthusiastic about writing it up and showing the world what I had done, however, the first thing I usually did was look at what everyone else was up to. By the time I had seen everyone else’s projects mine suddenly did not seem so great. Suddenly I would lose interest in what I had done, often not blogging it at all.

We are all human as children we are grouped together and put in order, tests tell us where we are in the scale of who is better at tests, that comparisons become human nature, we do it without thinking. We walk into a room and we notice who is thinner or prettier or who has the nicest dress, we might cover it up, we might smile and engage in small talk, but at the back of our minds is this small 7year old girl who knows exactly where she stands in the group.

What makes matters worse is that we censor what we write, we project a truth about ourselves that is not entirely the whole truth. Mostly because no-one really wants to read that you found a spot on your chin, but also because we feel that we have to have it together, because it seems everyone else is! So today’s post is about not getting it together!

My friends are always giving me so much encouragement, they marvel at my new creations which really boosts me, but they also believe that I a some sort of super woman. A lovely friend of mine comes here to learn how to sew and making mistakes is part of the learning process but she told me she expects I never made a mistake! I told her I had to throw away most of what I made for years before another wonderful friend did exactly what I am doing, took me aside and very patiently helped me to sew.

So here is my little confession! Since I moved my cooker has not been getting up to the correct temperature, however this only became clear when another fault developed and I had an engineer come out. Well every time I have tried to bake cakes they have ended up flat as pancakes! They were often so bad that I did not even tell anyone I had made them! I would hide them in the bin. I could not understand why I was doing exactly what I had done for years but it just did not work.

I joined a marvellous ladies group here in the village called Blakes Belles, I had signed up for a cake decorating day and had to bring along some home made cakes! EEK! So I decided that I would buy a cake! big mistake! I did not hide the fact that I had bought my cake but what I did not realise is that shop bought cakes are very soft! Each time I touched my cake with the icing, a huge chunk would come away!

here it is!

What a disaster! It was so terrible but the teacher reassured me that it would all be ok! I watched everyone else smooth over their buttercream with envy! I found it quite funny and it made me realise that cheaters don’t win! 
The teacher was correct though! Once the royal icing was over the top of the cake the disasters had been covered up! It was a miracle! 
I have always been wanting to try cake decorating, and the day was wonderful, once it got down to making things with the icing I was fully absorbed as was everyone else. The day was wonderful, everyone went home with beaming smiles because they had made cakes they were proud of! 
and so I did finally create a cake to be proud of, even if it was a bit of a journey. Like everything in life, it was a lesson learnt – nothing really is lost, it is just a case of perseverance!