How Do You Know....

Business By Kitagrl Updated 27 Sep 2011 , 6:44pm by cakelady2266

Kitagrl Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 2:36am
post #1 of 20

How do you know when its time to throw in the towel or if one should just stick things out?

Had a cake disaster this weekend....pretty sure it wasn't my my regular venue where cakes are stored in an outside, very humid, cooler by a river. The fondant strips were melting off the cake and the cakes were covered in water, and beginning to bubble up. I have an otherwise perfect reputation as far as my home business, and you can look anywhere online and find that.

I am finding the stress is starting to get to me. I totally LOVE this extra money I'm making, and I have four boys so we actually need it. I don't want to be a quitter. On the other hand, some days I wonder if a part time, 9-5 job would be less stressful than my boys want a dog and they can't have one since I'm a home baker. haha. (Of course, the dog would be expensive for a tight budget, which we will REALLY have if I quit my business!)

My venue will talk with me more on Monday. They think I have part to blame...I think its their cooler to blame. I have another thread that goes into detail so I won't here....

I love the money but its like cake non stop...on Monday I buy stuff for cakes...on Tuesday I bake....mostly on Wed through Fri (or Sat) I decorate, and Fri/Sat and/or Sun I deliver. Then it starts over on Monday. I realize most people have to work all that anyway haha but I also have four boys and I"m always stressed and we always have to work out the deliveries and...I dunno....

Should I keep it going? I've had cakes in local magazines even, and joined local name is just starting to get fairly known in the area.... or do I buy the boys a dog and just be a mommy with a part time job somewhere in the community?

I think I'm discouraged and hormonal right now...but so much lately I think, "I just want to be a mommy again". I don't want to be a quitter...I've never been a quitter...but how do you know when its time to, well, be a quitter?

19 replies
CocoaBlondie Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 2:59am
post #2 of 20

I'm with you, I know how you feel. It's like for a little while I wanted business. Now I can't wait for a week off ( never happens ). Your cakes are beautiful. You know you can't quit completely. Maybe just start to turn down a couple here and there & say your booked. My son said to me today when I went out for a delivery "Mommy can't these people just pick-up there own cake at the store". I about died. Even with all the stress there's nothing like that feeling after you drop it off & everyone compliments you. I drive away thinking it's all worth it.

scp1127 Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 3:27am
post #3 of 20

If you are that busy, it sounds like you may be able to raise your prices and accept less work. This would give you a break. A price increase may allow you to hire someone to clean a few hours a week while you make your cakes that make you a higher wage. That cleaning person will really change your outlook.

Kitagrl Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 3:36am
post #4 of 20

My main problem/blessing right now is the venue, giving me 1-3 cakes per weekend....I can't turn those down, really.

Occasionally I have one of my own clients but then the venue will spring an extra one on me, or something. That or I just want to make more money so I accept an extra order. I'm getting worn down on it.

But if I just keep the venue, and never accept outside orders, it defeats the purpose of having a website hahahaha......

Of course if the venue decides to let me go because of my cakes this weekend (see other thread) that will be that....we'll see!

YummyCreations Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 3:37am
post #5 of 20

I totally understand what you are saying. For now I've just been making cakes for family and close friends free of charge but am considering renting out a commercial kitchen and selling cakes in a couple of years when my youngest starts school full time. However, I'm hesitant about how this will impact my personal time and my family time. Yes, it would be great to have additional money, but the more I think about the added stress and if it would take the fun out of making cakes, the more I'm considering setting limits for myself as to how many orders per week to take and maybe I'll will just stick to smaller cakes and avoid wedding cakes all together. I'm sure this will limit my potential income and I will probably need to find someone else to share the kitchen and the costs with but it will also give me a balance between baking cakes and family time. I hope you find the balance you need as well!

tbkimber Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 3:44am
post #6 of 20

Your cakes are so beautiful and your Celtic Wedding Cake is one of my all time favorite cakes. It sounds like you are a little burned out so I agree with CocoaBlondie that you should lighten up your work load for a bit. You can just tell people you are booked. They don't need to know your time is booked by your children. You have put so much time and energy into your business and I would hate for you to stop now especially since you love it. I think if you didn't love making cakes you would already have stopped.

sugarlover Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 3:45am
post #7 of 20

No don't quit. Just see what the venue is talking about on Monday. I will suggest raising prices and taking less orders so you will stay sane. I hope everything works out! good luck!

Kitagrl Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 3:46am
post #8 of 20
Originally Posted by tbkimber

Your cakes are so beautiful and your Celtic Wedding Cake is one of my all time favorite cakes. It sounds like you are a little burned out so I agree with CocoaBlondie that you should lighten up your work load for a bit. You can just tell people you are booked. They don't need to know your time is booked by your children. You have put so much time and energy into your business and I would hate for you to stop now especially since you love it. I think if you didn't love making cakes you would already have stopped.

Yeah...I'll have to see how my venue works out...if you read here you will see what happened today:

I really kinda have to do those cakes...I do have a back up baker but I can't just use her all the my paychecks have been looking nice but then some weeks I'm pretty busy. Maybe I should just stop taking outside orders, I dunno....sometimes I get greedy for the extra money, with Christmas coming up...and then in Nov I'm going out of town and things...

Oh well. Bad night I guess. Thanks all!

CakeInfatuation Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 3:50am
post #9 of 20

Get some sleep. Give it to God. And let's go to lunch soon! Okay! icon_smile.gif And if you stop working for them because of this, don't pass them to me. ha ha ha ha ha I can't control the weather either!

Kitagrl Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 3:52am
post #10 of 20
Originally Posted by CakeInfatuation

Get some sleep. Give it to God. And let's go to lunch soon! Okay! icon_smile.gif And if you stop working for them because of this, don't pass them to me. ha ha ha ha ha I can't control the weather either!


molly_36 Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 4:26am
post #11 of 20

I read the earlier post and came back on and read this...then looked at your photos. WOW! icon_eek.gif It would be a shame for you to give this up because you have such a God given talent. Get some rest, take some time for yourself and your family and then decide. I agree with the others...up your price, do fewer cakes and spend more time with your kids. thumbs_up.gif

SweetDreams Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 1:49am
post #12 of 20

Here is a question to consider.......Do you love what you do?

If yes, is it just that you are doing a little more than you would like?

Maybe you could schedule yourself off for a weekend here or there. Or slow down on the number of orders you take each weekend. When cake decorating turns into a cake making mill, the fun & love of it begins to dwindle sometimes and the stress level goes up. The next thing you know, you think maybe you should give it up altogether.

Sit down and ask yourself "what needs to change for me to have peace with it and a love of what you do again. Usually when we are stressed out about something we are doing, God is trying to tell us to change something about HOW we are going about it. It does not always mean that you are on the wrong path. What needs to change?

If you do not love what you are doing, then by all means, you may need to take a look at changing that.

I highly doubt God has given you this talent with the intention for you NOT to use it. Don't let a bad mishap make you think that you now need to quit. Learn what you can from what happened, evaluate what you need to change to stay in cake decorating and PASS YOUR TEST as Joyce Meyer would say. She says that we all have situations happen in our lives that are actually tests of character we need to pass to move on to the next stage of where we are in life and what we are doing.

I am just realizing that I need to listen to my own words here! I had also been making cakes for a while until I did a wedding cake last fall that I thought was really good but when I got no feedback at all from that client (who was a neighbor. She raved and raved to me about how well the florist did and how beautiful the hall was decorated but would not and did not say one thing about the cake), something happened within me which made me think that maybe I was not really good enough to do this. I started turning down orders and only doing cakes occasionally for family. Now, I still get orders from time to time but somehow don't really want to take them. I am right there with you in thinking ;was that a sign that I should have given it up or did I take it the wrong way and gave up something that maybe I just needed to sit down and take a look at reevaluating the HOW I was going about it. I think if I can just figure out what happened for me, maybe I can now work through it and move on, either start back up again or continue to let it go.

Anyway, I hope this post somehow helps you!

Good Luck!

Kitagrl Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 1:52am
post #13 of 20

Thanks all!

I truly do not think I was at fault in the situation this weekend...all I can do is wait and see what happens and go from there...and make the changes I can make.

I still need the job of doing cakes, and doing it from home is the ideal situation...everybody wishes they could work from home so I don't need to be ungrateful and quit...but yes maybe I should be a little less concerned about filling up every weekend with cakes.....


fabray13 Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 2:26am
post #14 of 20

first, your work is beautiful. you have a true talent! But it sounds like you are burned out. i agree with the others. Raise your prices and cut back on your orders. I read you r other post too. Sounds like that venue is taking advantage of you.

Pebbles1727 Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 3:19am
post #15 of 20

You are amazingly talented and God has blessed you with that imagination, attention to detail, patience, and skill. It is obviously a dream that He has placed in your heart, and He does not make mistakes, you know that : ) We come under attacks sometimes, but His voice will guide you through. Just slow down, relax, and let Him show you the way. This may be just a case of refocusing and reprioritising--His mercies are new every day and it is going to be a better day tomorrow.

BizCoCos Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 3:39am
post #16 of 20

Have you thought about hiring a person to work with you part time in the kitchen, this would be someone that is new but not so new that they would add to your burden. I think you need ton take fewer orders as some responders suggested. Your cakes are beautiful. I love your cake blog! I'm your neighbor by the way.

rlowry03 Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 4:02am
post #17 of 20

First of all, your cakes are absolutely stunning! I can't imaging taking one of these works of art and getting a call the night before a wedding that it's been ruined! I read your other post, so I understand that in addition to the workload there is other stress associated with the venue you work with. I don't know what your agreement with them is, but can you take fewer cake orders from them? 3 cakes a week is a lot especially if you start tacking on individual delivery and setup. If the venue refuses to allow you to turn down orders, do you have enough clients outside of the venue to keep up the orders?

I know what it's like when money is tight. It makes it very hard to turn down anything. But only you can decide what your sanity is worth! If you don't love what you do I would say walk away from it. It doesn't make you a quitter. It just means there's something else out there for you to pursue next. You don't have to stick with something forever. If you do enjoy decorating, I'd say stick with it but find the balance between the work and your life. Only you know if this means taking fewer orders from the venue, not accepting outside orders, or dropping the venue and only having independent clients. If you can take a week or 2 off to think things over it might make the situation a little clearer.

Best of luck!

CocoaBlondie Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 9:55am
post #18 of 20

Be sure to update us on how today goes. Hoping all is well icon_smile.gif

Kitagrl Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 6:42pm
post #19 of 20

I really appreciate everyone's encouragement! Thanks!

So far everything seems okay today...see my other thread which I updated. Yeah I do get tired of caking sometimes but I think any job is tiring, so I'm lucky mine gets to be at home. I do have some time off coming in November so that will be good.

Thanks so much everyone for your kindness!!!!

cakelady2266 Posted 27 Sep 2011 , 6:44pm
post #20 of 20

Okay, first off take a deep breath. Your work is beautiful, you are very talented. EVERYBODY has something that goes wrong be it no fault of their own that makes them want to throw in the towel. It is discouraging to have something go wrong, but s**t happens. Sometimes I want to throw in the towel even when things are going good and I've doing cakes for 22 years. Your reputation up until this point will sustain you, trust me.

Having you business at home has it's rewards and drawbacks. My shop is in my front yard so I don't have to travel far but my job is ALWAYS there so I don't get much of an escape. I have got to stay home and raise my two boys, take care of my aging parents and be my own boss. I wouldn't rejoin the regular work force unless my sons were hungry.

My advise is to get your favorite drink and plop your butt down on the couch watch something to take your mind off things (no cake shows). This feeling will pass soon.

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