This marks the beginning of an exciting season in my life! I am officially a self-employed baker!
There, after years and years of just playing with the idea of baking and selling my cakes, I finally decided to take the leap. I took my first order roughly about a week ago when a dear friend I know asked me to bake a few cupcakes to sell at her church. Only recently, I had invited her and the family over for dinner for my son’s 3 birthday in September and she was too kind in her praise for the car themed birthday cake and cupcakes I had made for the occasion. I’d told her that I’d be happy to bake anything simple if she ever needed it.
So when she approached me to make some cupcakes for a fund-raiser at her church, I leapt at the offer and made some really nice soft-as-cotton-wool vanilla cupcakes with an equally lovely light-as-air chocolate icing. The cupcakes had turned out better than I had hoped and I was rather pleased with it. In fact, I can still picture the look on the lady’s face as she told me how professional the cakes looked when I delivered it to her and it made me beam with pride. I’m going to etch that moment in my mind for posterity in case I ever begin to doubt myself and my baking abilities again. You see, every time the thought about starting a cupcake business crossed my mind in the past, thoughts of fear and doubt would shut it down. This was the real reason it took me this long to get started on my baking business. Despite many friends and family encouraging me and prodding me to advertise my skills locally, I tended to brush them aside and played myself down. I’d reasoned in mind that my cakes won’t somehow be as good as the others or that nobody would really buy from little ol’ me. Well, I’ve proved myself wrong!
Funnily enough, on the Sunday that I set off to handover the cakes after attending church, I had affirmations and encouragements from a number of sources saying how good the cakes look and that I have a business in the making. I even remember rummaging through my cupboard for a bag to put my cupcake boxes in and hurriedly pulled out one that seemed big enough but hadn’t bothered to look at what it said on the side. It was only when I grabbed the bag later on my way out the door that I realised it said ‘Selling Like Hotcakes’ on the front! I nearly fell down laughing! (See picture above) On the way down in the lift, I had two neighbours walk in on a different floor and say to me as the first thing how tempting and polished the cakes in my bag looked and asked me for a sample! Two others complimented me similarly seeing the boxes of cakes in the car as they walked past us in the car park after the church service! It was all beginning to sound a little crazy to me after that!
I began to wonder if God had planted all these folks on that day to be there at the right time and place, just so they could speak words of encouragement into my life. Words that I badly needed to hear. To give me a nudge, perhaps. I think He did. I thought to myself that I’d be a fool not to give this a try, after all the prompting and affirmations I’d recieved that day. So after what started out as a favour for a friend, this is me, giving my dream a try. Lets see how far I can go sweetening people’s lives in their moments of celebration.
Sorry about the sappy stuff. However it was important for me to put this on my blog, cause of how significant it is. Since the birth of my son, I’ve looked at ways to earn an income while staying close to him. After a few months of hunting for part-time evening jobs and not coming across any that offered flixibility in terms of working hours, I figured I should give this a try for what it is worth.
Moving on, I made something that I hadn’t done in a very long while. Lasagna. I must confess that I am not a big fan of cheesy foods. I’ve had a life long hatred for milk and other dairy products that I just can’t explain. If anything smelt cheesy or milky, I wouldn’t eat it. Hence I’ve always pulled the cheese off my pizzas and always asked for barely there sprinkling of cheese on my Paninis if I have to order them at a café. I’m aware that I sound a bit alien to some folks, especially here in Britian, where almost everyone is a closet cheese-connoiseur. In fact, I personally am yet to come across another person who has a dislike for cheese like myself. However since my son’s birth, I’ve consciously tried to include cheese in my cooking and diet in a bid to get him to try all foods so he doesn’t end up hating it for no reason like I do. So I made this vegetarian Lasagna a few days ago, albeit with a little hesitation, but it turned out so good that even I enjoyed second helpings of it!
Aubergine and Mozzarella Bake
I had enough Aubergine to fit two loaf tins, so I baked one for dinner that evening and froze one away for later. I took the recipe from here and instead of grilling the Aubergine slices in the oven, I fried them on a griddle, which took a bit of time, but was well worth the effort. I’m going to skip the recipe and instructions for this dish just cause the link I’ve included is rather detailed and it would be unnecessary for me to repeat it here. Here are some more pictures of the cooking and assembly of the Lasagna I took though.
If you’ve never tried a vegetarian Lasagna, I’d highly recommend this one to you. You will not be disappointed. Do give it a try. 🙂
Plus, I tried my hand at making my own pesto for the first time! It was much better than the popular store-bought stuff and incredibly easy to make as well. I only wish someone had told me about this earlier!
Home Made Pesto
Just blitz together the following in a blender and add to cooked al dente pasta.
- 2 cups of basil leaves
- 1/2 to 3/4 cup of parmesan or other hard cheese (I used sparing amounts cause I found the smell of the cheese too strong. You can sprinkle more as a garnish later on however)
- Walnuts or pine nuts – 1/2 cup
- Garlic gloves – 2
- oil – 1/2 cup (olive or sunflower oil)
- a splash of lemon juice
In other news, I’ve finally slipped into autumn mode after wrapping up some hobbies I started way back in summer. While going on a lovely walk early one morning, I was blown away by the beautiful autumn scenery before me.
Both my son and I enjoyed running around and playing among autumn leaves and my spirits were soaring. I picked a few leaves on my way back hoping to make something with it later on during the day. Here’s what I came up with after playing around with it on my carpet.
Craft Ideas using autumn leaves
As you can see from the collage, I’ve merely rearranged the leaves to give you an idea of all the different things you can do with it. I ended up stringing the leaves to make a bunting for my living room for the day and later took it downstairs to hang it between two trees by the entrance of my building. While it looked really pretty outdoors (I’d forgotten to take a picture of it), it got blown away by the winds by the next morning! If you want to make a wreath out of the leaves as shown in the picture, you can either choose a polystyrene base or simply make your own by cutting an old cardboard box (into a round or heart shape) and sticking the leaves on top of it.
After nearly a year I’ve started going to Forest school at my local woods with my son, and we are both enjoying it tremendously! Here’s a picture of my son enjoying pasta cooked on an open fire at the woods.
I guess those are all the updates for now. Hope you have a fabulous end to the month of October whereever you are. xx
(Update:I managed to get an online certification for a Level 2 food safety course this afternoon while my toddler napped and by evening, I’d managed to convince another friend to let me bake for her daughter’s 2nd birthday party. I’ve also finalised the logo and name of my business for putting on the application form for holding a stall at a food fair at my local arts centre. I don’t know why I have tears as I type this. Maybe its because I know God’s hand is behind all these sequence of events that seem to just happen one after the other.)
O Give thanks unto the God of gods, for His mercy endureth forever