On May 4th every year as a child, I woke up with intense excitment. Not just because it was my birthday but because I knew there was a spectacular cake waiting for me at my party. I never knew what it would be because Mum would work tirelessly through the night after we had gone to bed; it was a complete secret to be revealed to my friends and I during the celebration. She never failed to amaze and impress. From the flat 3ft rag doll to the tea party table and princess castle, they were every little girl’s dream and I remember them well. Eventually, my aunt and mother would work together on all our cakes in the family and they became legends. I would pour over their cake decorating books for hours, and it didn’t matter how many times I saw the pictures, I would pick them up and flip through again and again for many years. They were fascinating to me.
I think it was these memories that drove me to begin wandering into the baking sections at bookstores and looking at the new books on cake decorating (after all there were so many developments since Mum’s ones from the 70s and 80s!). It suddenly dawned on me in 2007 that I should try my hand at making one and began slowly collecting books of my own.
However, it wasn’t until May 4th, 2008, my 30th birthday, I decided to stop dreaming and actually make my first one. I was working at Starbucks at the time and was obsessed with coffee and, seeing as I coulnd’t find a design I wanted to try from the books, I would just use the basic knowledge I had aquired and make a Starbucks themed cake.
It was not perfect but I learnt a great deal and remade this cake several times for fellow Starbucks junkie friends. This was the beginning of a great journey. I do not have my own children to surprise at their birthday parties but I am blessed to see the same excitement and joy on the faces of friends and family as I offer them my creations and celebrate together.