Help me. I don’t know how to keep doing this.

White Starfish Ruffles Wedding Cake

Well ya’ll, I just don’t know how to keep doing this.

I love cake.  I love cake decorating.  I absolutely love this business I’m in.  It’s a dream come true – I’ve said that before.  But as my business has grown, it’s also become burdensome.  Cake decorating is a very demanding, life-consuming business.

Today I realized that my very best friend, who lives in Italy, is coming to the States for 6 weeks this fall, and it’s quite possible I won’t get to spend any time with her.  She lives on another continent and I haven’t seen her in more than a year and I may miss this chance.

Why?  Because of cake.  You see, I’m completely booked up for all of September, October, and most of November.  The orders are such a huge blessing and it’s amazing and yet, it breaks my heart.

As I sat on the couch with tears in my eyes thinking about this today – trying to figure out a way to make it work – I received an email from a bride wanting to book her wedding cake. For Summer 2015.

I just shook my head and cried harder.  It’s my 7th cake request for 2015.  How can I know what I’ll be doing next year?  In January?  Or May?  Or July?  Or what I’ll want to be doing?   How does anyone plan out their life and their weekends months and months in advance??

I don’t blame the bride for wanting (needing) to plan her wedding well in advance – I know that’s just the way things need to be done.  But can I really spend my life this way?

What if our church plans another mission trip in June like they did last summer?  I will not want to miss it!

What if my kids get invited to camp and I want to chaperon?  Or there’s a conference I want to attend?  Or a concert or a party?   My poor kids have missed birthday parties they were invited to because I couldn’t get finished with cake orders in time to take them.  How sad it that?

Or maybe I just suddenly want a weekend to hang out with my family and watch movies instead of working in the kitchen all day long and into the wee hours of the morning Thursday, Friday and Saturday night?

Two years ago we missed our nephew’s graduation a few hours away because I had a wedding cake that weekend that had been booked months before we knew a graduation date.  There was simply no way to do the cake and make the drive to and from the graduation.  It was awful.

Over the past couple of years – that’s happened a lot.  I’ve missed out on more things than I can count because my calendar was already booked up weeks and months in advance.  Or I should say “we” missed out on things… because often my family misses things too.

How do I keep doing this?

I appreciate my customers.  More than I can ever say.  I’m so, SO very thankful for this business and the income and well… all of it.  I love it.  I know there are bakers and cake decorators who would give anything to have a growing or full-time cake business.   I don’t take it for granted.  Ever.

I’m overwhelmed and sometimes still in disbelief with how successful this little adventure has become.  My life is wonderful – I am blessed beyond measure with the opportunities I have – to work from home and homeschool my children and live out my dream of cake decorating.

I can’t emphasize enough that I love, love, love what I do!!

But.   Such a powerful little word.

But….  how do I balance that success with wanting to live and enjoy my personal life outside of cake?  As much as I love cake, I don’t want to look back on my life and have regrets .  I don’t want to look back and see that everybody had their cakes for their happy events, but I missed out on my own happy events because I was doing those cakes!

I’ve even managed to slack on my own kids birthday’s more than once because I was so caught up and busy doing other kids’ cakes.  That’s not how I want to remember my life.

My kids will be grown and gone in a blink and I don’t want to miss it all.

I don’t have a staff that I can pass my orders off to if I need or want to go somewhere one weekend.  My “staff” is me, my husband, and my kids.  Period.   If I commit to a cake – I do it.  I do it.   I’ve never canceled a cake order.  I’ve never backed out after making a commitment.  That’s just not how I’m wired.

It’s not just a matter of cutting back or taking less orders.  I’ve tried that before.  Yes, it relieves my stress.  Yes, I get more sleep.  And yes, I need to take a break again and get back to my realization of what I really want!

But it only takes one cake – even if I only do one per weekend – one cake can be too much (such as the one and only wedding cake I had on the weekend of my nephew’s graduation). That one cake caused me to miss a once in a lifetime event.  And I can’t get it back.

So help me please.  If you have a cake business (or any kind of business) that gets booked up weeks and months in advance, how do you do it?  How do you handle conflicts with things you want to do?  Or how do you plan that far ahead and still have a life?    Am I thinking too hard on this?  Is there a simple answer that I’m not seeing? 

PS.  If you’re not already subscribed to my blog, would you?  You can sign up here for my free email updates and then you’ll never miss a cake or dessert or long depressing post about my life (ahem!!).  

This post contains affiliate links which means that, at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission if you make a purchase. Thanks so much for your support in this way! Read my full disclosure policy here.

Tiffany Blue & Black Damask Baby Shower Cake

Tiffany Blue and Black Damask Bridal Shower Cake

Today I’m going to tell you about this Tiffany Blue & Black Damask Baby Shower Cake.  

This is one of those cake designs I fell in love with immediately.   I love the Tiffany blue & black contrast.  I love the ribbons and small, simple bows.  I love the damask.  Everything put together just works.

And it reminded me of a bridal shower cake I did way, way back before I was even doing cakes publicly much – this Pink & Black Bridal Shower Cake.  Maybe it’s the black that make them similar to me – or maybe the initial on top.  Either way – I’m a big fan of the contrast of black with lighter colors… it just works!

Tiffany Blue and Damask Cake

Anywho…I didn’t get the damask pattern perfect on this cake, but it was my first time to use Marvelous Molds and I was very happy with it!  There was a learning curve to getting the molds to work just right, but after we got the hang of them, it was great!  I highly recommend watching the videos provided on the website if you decide to try out the silicone onlays!

Initial Cake Topper

For all of the black on this cake, I used Satin Ice Black Vanilla fondant.  I mixed it a little Tylose to form the “M” on top and the bows.   I also used my ribbon cutter for the ribbon borders and bows.  You can see how I do ribbon borders here and get some tips for making the topper from my How to Make Fondant Number Toppers.

Oh, and I used 22 gauge wire inside the “M” and I inserted the wires into coffee straws in the cake to keep it “food safe”.

A few last details…  The cake was size 6″ and 10″ round.  It was Butter Pecan flavored cake with Butter Pecan Buttercream Filling.  I used homemade marshmallow fondant for the blue – I think I used a mix of Electric Blue and Teal Americolor Gel Colors to get the Tiffany Blue color.

The original design was found here on Flickr by Chantilly Cake Designs.

And that’s all I’ve got for you.  Do you have any questions about this cake?  I’d love for you to leave me a comment!  And if you don’t mind, Pin this image below for me… thank you!

Tiffany Blue & Black Damask

This post contains affiliate links which means that, at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission if you make a purchase. Thanks so much for your support in this way! Read my full disclosure policy here.

{Closed – Winners Announced!} Local Only Giveaway: Enter to Win Cupcakes!!

 

Win Cupcakes!

CLOSED!  I had to go through a delete a few duplicate comments, but finally…  the winners are (chosen using Random.org) :

#48 – Kristen Anders, kristencupit@xxxxx

#55 – Samantha Sivils, samanthasivils@xxxxx

#2 – Stephanie Smith, smith777@xxxxxx

Congrats everybody!!  I’ll be in touch to set up delivery asap!

I haven’t done a local giveaway in quite awhile and well, since I just looooove my local customers, I figured I needed to show a little appreciation by spreading some cupcake LOVE!

I’ll be giving away at least 2 boxes of cupcakes (for clarity – one box each for two winners) tomorrow (Friday) afternoon!

I may even have 3 boxes!  I just have to wait until I have all of my orders are boxed up and see exactly how many I have left over tomorrow!   And since I don’t have a final count on my orders vs. how many I baked, I think this week I’ll surprise you on the flavors too … they’ll probably be mixed with chocolate, vanilla and/or red velvet!

If you’re local to me (in Meadville/Bude, MS) or willing to drive over here to Meadville/Bude,  please leave a comment on this post to get your entry in!!   I’ll close the giveaway around noon tomorrow (Friday, September 12th) and deliver them sometime in the afternoon (probably 3-4pm).  Please note: Facebook comments do not count and please only one comment per person!

Winners will be chosen at random and I’ll contact you vie email/Facebook/or text to set up delivery/pick-up (I can deliver to Meadville/Bude or meet you there).

Here’s how to enter…

Leave a comment on this post telling me what your plans are for the weekend… or tell me something else!  Any (nice) comment will do!    Be sure to leave me a way to contact you (email, home or cell number, or if we’re friends on Facebook, tell me to message you!)!!   I will email/call you if you win and you must respond promptly to claim your prize!!   

Want an extra entry?  Share this giveaway (just “share” my Facebook post with the picture) and come back and leave a SECOND comment telling me you shared!! 

Thanks so much everybody!!

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This post contains affiliate links which means that, at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission if you make a purchase. Thanks so much for your support in this way! Read my full disclosure policy here.
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