Military Wife Appreciation Cake Idea - Long

Decorating By cownsj Updated 3 Jul 2010 , 10:52am by Mom0971

cownsj Posted 1 May 2010 , 3:04pm
post #1 of 41

Ok, I need help with a particularly special cake for us to make. Our next door neighbor and very good friend had been retired from the military for 10 years. However, after trying to get back in, 2 years ago he was called back up and spent the past year in Afghanistan. This, while their son was stationed in Iraq. He will be home for good the end of next month. We, their friends intend to throw a big party. But, it's not just for him, it's for his wife as well to let her know how much we appreciate what she has endured during the past 2 years. So what I'm looking for is help figuring out a cake design that shows what he has done and our appreciation for his work, AND something specific to show her endurance and how she kept the homefires burning, so to speak. Can anyone help, please....... with ideas. I know it's what I want to do, but that's all I've got, I have no clue how to implement this.
Thank you all.

40 replies
minicuppie Posted 1 May 2010 , 4:12pm
post #2 of 41

Stay away from cammo, tanks, guns....I am sure both have seen enough of all that. Do they have a hobby they share? How about piping a gift certificate for a night at a (local) swanky hotel (try priceline.com for some really great deals)! His and hers spa treatments/massages are also usually welcome.

missmikey Posted 1 May 2010 , 5:03pm
post #3 of 41

It is the spouse who holds the family together when the soldier deploys, male or female. So maybe something showing her her "combat" experiences. Her doing things she didn't usually do when he was there. home repairs, yard work car fixing? I was a military wife anything that acknowledges she has given a lot of indirect support to her country is appreciated.

cownsj Posted 1 May 2010 , 7:00pm
post #4 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by missmikey

It is the spouse who holds the family together when the soldier deploys, male or female. So maybe something showing her her "combat" experiences. Her doing things she didn't usually do when he was there. home repairs, yard work car fixing? I was a military wife anything that acknowledges she has given a lot of indirect support to her country is appreciated.




Yes, that's the idea of what we want to portray. We want to show the service each of them have done, each in their own way. I agree with minicuppie to stay away from guns and camo, but something of a patriotic theme for his side of the cake, and definintely, we want to portray her role in his absence. As much as anything else, we want him to understand more of what her role has been too. Just not sure exactly how to implement the idea.

If it helps, all their kids are grown and off on their own so they aren't a factor for this one. But we don't want her thinking we haven't seen or appreciate what she has endured in his absence. And we want her to know how much she is appreciated for her role in all of this.

Any ideas on exactly how to represent this on a cake for her? We're picturing doing a tiered cake, he getting one half, and she the other half of the cake.

luddroth Posted 1 May 2010 , 7:19pm
post #5 of 41

Maybe just something with trees and yellow ribbons? It's a traditional welcome home for soldiers -- the women at home hold it together and tie yellow ribbons as signs of rememberance and welcome.

Doug Posted 1 May 2010 , 7:30pm
post #6 of 41

behind every great man or solider stands an even greater woman.

him on guard, her raising the flag?

him on guard -- looking at photos from home showing how she's keeping stuff going?

him saluting her

missmikey Posted 1 May 2010 , 7:40pm
post #7 of 41

I like him saluting her. Everyone in the know- knows the homefront spouse is the "general" of the family.

SugarFiend Posted 1 May 2010 , 7:47pm
post #8 of 41

Not sure how you could translate this into cake, but... the two of them hand-in-hand, each with backpacks carrying symbols of what they've carried. Like for her: their home, pictures of her husband and son. For him, a flag and - hm. Something representing freedom.

Abstractly, I picture this as them sitting on top of the cake with their backpacks next to them, spilling all these symbols down their respective sides of the cake.

cownsj Posted 1 May 2010 , 7:57pm
post #9 of 41

I'm loving these ideas, please keep posting. Trying to put together the picture of exactly how to do this.

I definitely see a tree on each side of the cake with a yellow ribbon on it, that can be the dividing line of the two halfs.......

I love the idea of their respective duties spilling down the cake too. I've never tried making people so I don't know if I could adequately pull that off.

On top, maybe his backpack and her shopping bag?

Wow, this is harder than I thought, but your ideas are working toward putting a picture of this together. I'm glad you are all getting the notion that it wasn't just him serving, but she served too. (Thank you missmikey so much for helping me to explain the vision I'm working at getting here.)

This has to be one hell of a cake, for both of them.


Anyway to incorporate a fire that would make sense? To represent the home fires burning....

cownsj Posted 1 May 2010 , 7:58pm
post #10 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug

behind every great man or solider stands an even greater woman.

him on guard, her raising the flag?

him on guard -- looking at photos from home showing how she's keeping stuff going?

him saluting her




Doug, I love all of this, it's so on target, but I just don't know how to make people. icon_cry.gif Any ideas for how I could accomplish it?

SugarFiend Posted 1 May 2010 , 8:05pm
post #11 of 41

A fireplace for the topper, with the bags setting on a rug in front of it, spilling the contents down the cake. But then I don't know where the tree would go. ?!

Maybe the tree could start at the center of the bottom tier, and their things could spill to either side of it...?

Doug Posted 1 May 2010 , 8:15pm
post #12 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by cownsj

Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug

behind every great man or solider stands an even greater woman.

him on guard, her raising the flag?

him on guard -- looking at photos from home showing how she's keeping stuff going?

him saluting her



Doug, I love all of this, it's so on target, but I just don't know how to make people. icon_cry.gif Any ideas for how I could accomplish it?




for people see Aine2's tutorials or any tutorial on polyclay people -- really very easy.

-----
could just do a big old tree sitting on a grassy area.

in the bark of tree the classic heart with initials

at base of tree his backpack, her mongo purse and all the stuff spilling out of it.

----

cake that looks like a scarp book with all kinds of edible images of him and her doing their respective duties?

----

JGMB Posted 1 May 2010 , 9:18pm
post #13 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by SugarFiend

A fireplace for the topper, with the bags setting on a rug in front of it, spilling the contents down the cake. But then I don't know where the tree would go. ?!

Maybe the tree could start at the center of the bottom tier, and their things could spill to either side of it...?




This may be unpatriotic -- if so, I apologize in advance .... I certainly don't mean it that way!!! I love the idea of the fireplace with the bags on the rug in front of the hearth. Could the tree trunk with the yellow ribbon around it be the log in the fireplace? Now that DH is home safely, she doesn't need it anymore. Just a thought.

cownsj Posted 2 May 2010 , 12:41am
post #14 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by JGMB

Quote:
Originally Posted by SugarFiend

A fireplace for the topper, with the bags setting on a rug in front of it, spilling the contents down the cake. But then I don't know where the tree would go. ?!

Maybe the tree could start at the center of the bottom tier, and their things could spill to either side of it...?



This may be unpatriotic -- if so, I apologize in advance .... I certainly don't mean it that way!!! I love the idea of the fireplace with the bags on the rug in front of the hearth. Could the tree trunk with the yellow ribbon around it be the log in the fireplace? Now that DH is home safely, she doesn't need it anymore. Just a thought.




Oh wow, that's a good thought. What does everyone else think?

(It's just important to me to get this cake just right for the two of them. They are more like family to me than the wonderful friends they are)

My only concern, and I'm not sure about it, is that I want them to have their separate due. Does that do it?

This cake concept is so much more difficult than I thought it would be, but well worth it if I can get it just right

cownsj Posted 2 May 2010 , 12:51am
post #15 of 41

Working on Doug's idea of the large tree in the center. Would something like this work or would it be too confusing. The large tree, on her side the heart with the initials in the middle. The branches on the left side of the tree would have leaves with fall colors and the leaves on the ground, a rake laying there where the leaves are being raked, the middle the brances are bare, snow on the ground, and to the right the leaves are green again, grass on the ground, flowers blooming. This to show how the seasons have passed in his absence. The yellow ribbon around the tree. On his side of the tree, the branches all bare, the ground with minimal grass, rocks, barren. His backpack against the tree. "IF" I can pull of a figure, have him sitting, back against the tree reading a letter from home, a picture by his side. Off to the side, a flag pole with the flag waving. Not sure how to incorporate her more into the scene. Does this begin to hit the mark and/or is it too confusing to follow?

I'm so excited about this cake and I want to incorporate all the ideas, so much into it to work, to honor them both.

Doug Posted 2 May 2010 , 2:16am
post #16 of 41

oooo that sounds so interesting and beautiful.

perhaps her planting fall bulbs that will bloom in spring?
covering rose bushes for the winter?

instead of him at tree.....

him off to side at flagpole -- but this flagpole is surrounded by the sandbags so often seen in overseas bases built up to make walls and safe havens.

NikkiB912 Posted 2 May 2010 , 3:13am
post #17 of 41

You could also do a pair of dogtags or something on her side that say "The Silent Ranks"...I am a military wife and I know that a lot of us refer to being part of the silent ranks. Or you could look up one of the military wife poems and put it on the cake but that might be too long. Even as a wife, I have no ideas! I think it's great that people are wanting to show their appreciation for her too...I know that I always get misty when people thank me so I know she will appreciate it!

cownsj Posted 2 May 2010 , 12:43pm
post #18 of 41

Doug and NikkiB912, I'm loving both of those. Nikki, let me thank you too for your service. My friend has shown the true military wife spirit. She just goes on, dealing with her emotions inside her always putting a smile on hers and everyone else's face. I have watched her for 2 years while he's been away, and I really do think it's sooo important to recognize her service to duty too.

I would never have thought about her dog tags. I LOVE that. I can have him over by the pole and sand bags like Doug says, but maybe I have have their respective dog tags on each side of their cakes hanging down the side.

My fear is still being able to make the figures, but I'm going to try. I have a month to hopefully figure this out. Since we're now into spring, and it will be approaching summer when he gets here do I put her into the picture mowing grass or something? And should I put the symbolic fire into the scene somehow? maybe at the bottom of the cake? Maybe a fire on each of their sides, his side to keep warm, and her side that she's keeping the homefires going or do I leave the fire off?

Doug Posted 2 May 2010 , 5:40pm
post #19 of 41

like the fires on both sides -- great tie in

there's lots of tutorials all over the net and on youtube.

(tutorials for polyclay are equally applicable -- as the technique is the same, just the material is different)

cownsj Posted 3 May 2010 , 6:45pm
post #20 of 41

How does this sound, to tie them together more, yet keeping them separated. Put the sand bags around the flag pole, but also stack them across the top of the cake with the tree still in the middle. (This way, when looking at his side of the cake, you only see his images.) He will be sitting with his back to these sandbags reading his letter, picture at his side, or a box of girl scout cookies. (I know she sent him girl scout cookies). On her side of the cake, it will have either a fence or the foundation of the house, so you aren't seeing the sandbags from his side. Opposite where he is sitting against the fence is where she'll be in the fall leaves, planting the flower bulbs for the coming spring. They'll be right there together, yet still separated.
His side of the cake will be boulders and patches of grass, but very nondescript in shape. Her side, the tiers will be manicured and level, and clean lines. Their respective dog tags will be actual size draped and hanging down the sides of the cake, and the fires at the bottom.

(I'm getting so excited about this cake - I hope I can pull it off). Is this whole picture sounding clear and making sense, and most importantly, fitting with the theme we're tyring to produce?

GuinnessTigger Posted 3 May 2010 , 8:40pm
post #21 of 41

I love your ideas! As a military wife of a solider that has been deployed 5 times, I can tell you that they will absolutely appreciate your kindness. I always believe my job is so much easier than my husbands, but it is so nice to hear that people understand that we are all in this together.

I can't wait to see the cake when it is done and your friend is home safely!

cownsj Posted 3 May 2010 , 8:51pm
post #22 of 41

Thanks GuinnessTigger. I was at a complete loss as to how to begin this idea, and I'm so thankful to everyone who has posted their ideas for me to implement. My biggest fear is still making them on the cake, but I'll start trying that soon.

And I do really think that the wife (or husband) left at home do have their own duty to serve, and after watching my friend for 2 years, I know I've only had a glimpse of what she's been through. She's a strong courageous woman and for me and her other friends here, it's important to us all to show we honor her every bit as much as him. when he left, "he" got the party, now we know better.

Any other ideas you can think of to implement, or to leave out?

Doug Posted 3 May 2010 , 9:22pm
post #23 of 41

OH WOW! That's a winner!

hurry up, I want to see the pictures!

cownsj Posted 4 May 2010 , 12:20am
post #24 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug

OH WOW! That's a winner!

hurry up, I want to see the pictures!




Doug, you've helped me so much with planning the design for this cake. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. And the military wives have given me insight I would never have had, especially the dog tags with "The Silent Ranks" on them, I just love it. I want to start making this cake right now. And Doug, when I start having problems with those figures, I'll be calling on you for help.... lol

I do think we might just have come up with a unique cake design here........

cownsj Posted 18 Jun 2010 , 8:37pm
post #25 of 41

I haven't forgotten everyone here with posting the cake. It's not done yet. My neighbors, who the cake is for went ahead and planned a trip. Just because they didn't know about this party, can you imagine they went ahead anyway and planned a trip? lol

Yesterday I made the armature for the tree. 75 pieces of wire twisted into shape. Today I'm slowing covering it in modeling chocolate. I'm putting some on, let it set up in the fridge, then put more on. tonight I'll probably be making both the autumn and the spring leaves for the tree. So far, I'm liking how it's going.

Doug Posted 18 Jun 2010 , 9:09pm
post #26 of 41

alrighty now.


how's about doing IN PROGRESS pics.

it could be a tutorial!!!!

(we all want to watch over your shoulder ya know!)

cownsj Posted 18 Jun 2010 , 9:15pm
post #27 of 41

uh oh, now you've got me nervous.... lol I did actually take a few photo's yesterday of just the wires. I will take photo's along the way, each thing I make and have ready for the cake. I'm still terrified of making them, but ........... it's got to be done. I'll see what I can do to figure out how to resize photo's so I can get them posted. Any ideas how I do that?

GL79 Posted 18 Jun 2010 , 9:33pm
post #28 of 41

Yes I want to see pictures too, everyone brougth so many good ideas.

Doug Posted 18 Jun 2010 , 10:00pm
post #29 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by cownsj

I'll see what I can do to figure out how to resize photo's so I can get them posted. Any ideas how I do that?




easy peasy....

http://www.shrinkpictures.com/

just choose the 760 option and BEST for quality.

cownsj Posted 18 Jun 2010 , 10:01pm
post #30 of 41

You are sooo right. I started out with nothing but a vague idea of the concept, and not a clue how to translate it into cake. So many great ideas from so many people, and now I have a design I'm so thrilled with I almost can't stand it.

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