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Dh asked me to hang up my apron for good :( - Page 4

post #46 of 96
I am a SAHM with three little children & one on the way at the end of the year. I love making cakes, but it is time consuming and it can be expensive. I have come to the conclusion that there is a time and a season for everything and it is different for each person. For me I am cutting back on my caking making. My husband and I talk about it and he understand that I love it and I am good at it but right now its a little to stressful for me and my family. I finally decided that I will still make cake for our family events and if that means my 3 year old get a three tier birthday cake so I can dabble in different tech. then so be it, and if there is a long stretch between birthdays we just might have one for the hay of it. I think there is always a way to compromise. I also love Sharon Zambito's DVD's but where I am not making cakes very much I was struggling with the idea of buying her new one. I finally came to the conclusion that they are great DVD's and if I can afford it and I want it then I should be able to get it - Cake Decorating is one of my passions. So if you love it and want to continue but it is causing stress to your family and yourself find ways to scale back until there is a better time. Good Luck. =)
post #47 of 96
I read this post and it struck a nerve with me so I wanted to step back and things carefully about my reply. That said, I hope it comes out right.

I agree with a lot of what was said but the bottom line is that you are a person, an individual-not just a wife and a mother. You have a right to your own interests. Yes, cakes are time consuming and it is expensive when you start out; this is not any different from other hobbies.

It is important to spend time with your husband and children but YOU are also important . There is nothing wrong with developing your own interests and talents.

It is so sad that as women we feel (or are made to feel) that we need to take care of men and children and not ourselves. All of us are slow when we start out. Guess what? You get faster with experience. Cakes that used to take me all day now take maybe a couple hours or so. You also find ways to work more efficiently over time.

Be patient with yourself, communicate with your husband but at the end of the day YOUR feelings and YOUR needs count for something too. You cannot be a good mother or wife by being consumed with those roles. Trust me, I have been there. I am much happier with some balance of me and them. Plus, I believe it is a good example for your children for them to see that mommy has her own interests and is free to pursue them.
I am really big on this, you don't want to send the wrong messages to your children either way. It is good for all of your relationships if you work on the one with yourself also.

I wish you well however you choose to handle it but don't lose yourself in an effort to be everything to other people including the ones you love most. Love yourself enough to have something of your own. Sending you a big hug! icon_smile.gif
The older I get the smarter my mother gets!
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The older I get the smarter my mother gets!
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post #48 of 96
I take exception that stay at home moms are not paid. I feel that I am paid very well. My husband works long hours and I appreciate every hour he puts into his company. I stay at home, but because of him, I have a car, a home, money in my pocket, and a bakery. Two people head our family. One pays for the home, and the other makes it a home.
post #49 of 96
I think the money might be a big thing...I know my hub helps alot when I'm doing cakes, but then I'm bringing in extra money doing it. So he knows that when he is helping me, he is also helping me make extra money for our family.

If I were doing it for free, though...I do think his patience would wear thin. Even when I was first starting out like 12 years ago, I was doing them for friends...and some were "practice" cakes but I did charge at least $20 for a cake or something....it paid for my supplies back then so I wasn't really out of pocket (couldn't afford that).

Your cakes are adorable and I can tell that you spend a lot of time on them! Honestly the time does seem a little bit excessive to me (10 hours for a two tiered cake) but some of that can be solved just by more practice and finding short cuts in certain ways.

I would say you should probably step back and think about how your husband might feel...you put aside your caking for your kids but not your husband? Can you sit and do some gumpaste work while you watch your little ones play? I often fill and ice cakes while my toddler watches tv or plays because I can stop in the middle of that if I have to. Baking is also easy to do when the kids are up because its not a constant job. Then I do decorating during naptime, and sometimes after dinner or after bedtime.

And then you might want to consider asking a little pay for your cakes, or asking them to buy your ingredients at least...so the husband doesn't see any financial loss due to the hobby...sometimes money can really stress a guy out.

Good luck, your cakes are beautiful!
post #50 of 96
This sounds similar to my situation. When my husband was alive, he was not very happy with me baking and decorating all the time. He never asked me to quit but I knew he felt that way. He got a new job and on his first day I sent a cake with the corporate logo on it. The employees were very excited and he got so much priase for having such a talented wife. After that he was totally into my cakes, he even began to deliver them on weekends when he was off. Secondly when I'm done and have delivered the cake, I let my 5 (ages 9,8,7 and 5-twins) kids make creations from the left over scraps and they love it! Now my nine year old daughter has her own cookie business and she says I inspired her. If this means that much to you, please try to come up with a compromise. HTH
"Proper planning prevents poor performance" -unknown
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"Proper planning prevents poor performance" -unknown
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post #51 of 96
I can relate to you, OP! I only do this for fun since I have a stressful full time job. I've taken money for 5 orders only and it's paid for my newly redecorated guest room. But my DH announced he was "over this cake thing" because like you, it takes up so much of my time and it makes a mess. He feels like I am not making enough money for the days it takes to bake/decorate/prep decorations/clean. I think he forgets that it's an enjoyable hobby because often I am cranky while doing it, LOL!

However.......
My DH doesn't spend a lot of time with me anyway so I don't get his point. We never watch the same TV shows and have different bedtimes. Is this something you used to do together? Is he resenting watching the kids more often? My DH is the messiest man on the planet and the nerve he has to complain about cake mess is something! So you only left the kitchen a wreck ONCE and he got upset?

Find out if you were being paid for this, would he feel differently?

Seems like, as Oprah would say, "it's not about the cake." Dig a little deeper and find out what's really bothering him. It's obvious I need to do that, too!
The definition of husband is one who takes out the trash and then declares he cleaned the whole house.
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The definition of husband is one who takes out the trash and then declares he cleaned the whole house.
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post #52 of 96
I think you should look at your overall goals and see where you are. Hobbies, yes, are very important and fun. However, are you able to do other things that are your goals? I agree you shouldn't give caking up for good. But as so many have said, find a balance.

Caking is also a hobby of mine, along with sewing. Both can take many hours, causing huge messes. I must say, I'm still looking for a balance. When I'm doing cakes, nothing else seems to get done. I am a SAHM, and I agree, we do get paid! My husband works hard so I can do my hobbies, etc. and buy things I want. But I agreed when I became a SAHM that my "work" is my home and children. I honestly can say that I rarely spend 8 hours a day on house/kid stuff. How would it look if my dh decided to work on hobbies at work. I know, he's not my employer, but we've agreed on why I am at home.

I just say cut back. It is important to do your hobby and get better at it, but weigh the costs of your times. Marriage is a partnership. Talk with him about why he feels the way he does and explain yours.

In our house, I have to look at what I have time for or make time for. If I am behind on tons of housework, should I cake? Of should I ignore it and make more messes with caking? What is the cake for? How important is it?

As we always tell our children, work first, then play. But sacrifices should also be made for hobbies. But they shouldn't be made 80% of the time. When I cake, my husband is prepared for neglect of the house and kids. But luckily, I don't do it so much that it seems like all the time.

I do hope you can find something that works for both of you! (And it sounds like you two might need some more dates here and there. This could be something more than just caking.)

Good luck!
post #53 of 96
So sorry you're in this situation dear. Yeah, it's very time/money consuming when you're getting started. Especially if you're not getting paid. I can totally understand how hubbies can get tense about all the time and expense involved. But, becuase it's something you love, you don't want to quit...I mean, how can you get better/faster if you're not DOING it???

I'm in the camp with those who advocate talking to your hubby, explaining yourself, and seeing if you and he can't compromise. Your marriage means a whole lot more than a hobby, no matter how passionate you are about cakes. My motto is "People first, things later." It's totally worth trying to find the middle ground...no reason for you both to entrench yourselves in opposite corners on this.

I have to say that I think either spouse telling the other to "suck it up" is a recipe for disaster. I'd never say that to my husband. Very disprespectful. I treat him the way I want him to treat me, and I'd be very hurt if he told me to suck it up and just deal. That's not partnership. Maybe this issue is something you both need to step away from for a week or two, then come back and discuss. Who knows? Maybe with some distance, your husband's attitude may change.
post #54 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chasey

I can relate to you, OP! I only do this for fun since I have a stressful full time job. I've taken money for 5 orders only and it's paid for my newly redecorated guest room. But my DH announced he was "over this cake thing" because like you, it takes up so much of my time and it makes a mess. He feels like I am not making enough money for the days it takes to bake/decorate/prep decorations/clean. I think he forgets that it's an enjoyable hobby because often I am cranky while doing it, LOL!

However.......
My DH doesn't spend a lot of time with me anyway so I don't get his point. We never watch the same TV shows and have different bedtimes. Is this something you used to do together? Is he resenting watching the kids more often? My DH is the messiest man on the planet and the nerve he has to complain about cake mess is something! So you only left the kitchen a wreck ONCE and he got upset?

Find out if you were being paid for this, would he feel differently?

Seems like, as Oprah would say, "it's not about the cake." Dig a little deeper and find out what's really bothering him. It's obvious I need to do that, too!


Exactly what she said!
A balanced diet is chocolate in both hands!
Glenda
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A balanced diet is chocolate in both hands!
Glenda
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post #55 of 96
Sigh... always late to the party..... Read through all the posts - wow, what a collection of diverse and smart people. There is so much great advice here but this is my favoite
[quote="Rafael1812"]You CAN find a balance. I am still in high school and taking on wedding, birthday and other celebration cakes. I have a lot on my plate: bake in advance and freeze cakes. Make SMBC in advanced. Cover your base before hand. Work step by step, cleaning after each step so you can avoid a HUGE mess (been there a lot of times). Don't be afraid to say no. aquote]

The above is from a high school student? And his cakes are fab! Okay, they ARE making kids smarter these days.

My own 2 cents: DH's attitude is easier to understand when you remember that it is a non-profit hobby (costing the family money). If he were the one spending family time and assets to pursue his passion and then not cleaning up afterwards, it would likely irritate you.
There are many clever ideas already mentioned if you wanted to attract more business (giving him samples for co-workers, etc.) but it doesn't sound like you are ready for that yet. How about showing him a comparison of how much money it would be costing you if you were enrolled in baking/decorating/business courses (course costs plus books, materials, etc.) vs. the materials costs you now have?.... you are actually saving the family money while you are investing in your talents for the family's future! Clean as you go, so the kitchen isn't a disaster when you finish (If this is truly his pet peeve). Make a date to talk to each other when the kids are in bed. You need to find out if this is just a small minded control issue or if he is worried about you/your marriage, etc. AND you both need to accept that you are a very creative, talented person who needs an outlet in order to be happy.
Raising kids is so wonderfully draining, isn't it? I wrote a Russian historical novel when my youngest was 2 and the most physically active child anyone has ever seen (kind of super HD)... woulda gone crazy if I didn't have that outlet!
post #56 of 96
I have three younger ones too. While it's a hobby now I would like to branch out in the future slowly.

One thing I do is try to make my buttercream and bake the cakes in one night. I make up the buttercream and then I set it aside. I make up all of my cake batters and pour them into the pans (I bought more than one pan for certain sizes that are popular so I have two 8x3 pans) and I bake my cakes while I watch television or visit with my husband. You could also do applique work while they are baking.

Cakes go into the fridge overnight and the following day during naps or daycare/school I level, torte, fill and crumbcoat - back into the fridge.

I get my fondants coloured and ready in bags and set up my workspace for the following day.

Then it's work work work the following day and I'm done, time to clean up.

I'm still working on time management, but I just did a stay puft marshmallow man cake and it was the first time I wasn't down to the wire for the cake. I followed the steps above and spreading it over two days and one evening made it so much smoother of a process for me.

Don't give up your cakes are beautiful!
Crystal
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Crystal
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post #57 of 96
I'm relatively new to cake decorating and retired, so my children are gone. But my DH and I live in a townhouse where the kitchen is essentially part of our dining/living space... so when I do cakes, he lives through it with me. The mess I create sometimes overwhelms me, so I've learned to break things up to manage it. I bake on one day - many layers at a time. I have 4 8" pans and two of all others except the odd sizes. I have two ovens but rarely use both at one time. Sometimes I wrap and freeze individual layers. (Be sure to lable with size, kind of cake, and date.) When I have time, I 'engineer' full cakes. Covered cake board, filled layers, crumb coated with buttercream or a layer of ganache. Then I carefully wrap and freeze the whole thing. Most of the people that I bake for (not a for-sale business), either want white, chocolate or marble cakes, so that's what I usually keep on hand. Then when I decorate, I take out the frozen cakes the night before and ice, cover with fondant the next morning. Then it can sit until the next day. I either make decorations ahead, that afternoon, or simple ones the next morning - at which point I actually decorate the cake. A few things that really helped me: over a period of time, buying good equipment and tools - for example, molds to make large pearls (balls) nd ropes. This is a big timesaver. Another is getting my storage organized so I know what's where and can grab it and put it away without making a mess. The other major factor is simply practice. After months of making cakes, I can whip out a cake in a fraction of the time that it used to take.

Perhaps, if you can convince your husband that you're really working to get your process under control and are confident that you will work it down to a more manageable one, he will be willing to be patient. Good luck. I can't imagine giving up the joy of making cakes and hope you don't have to!
We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. Winston Churchill
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We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. Winston Churchill
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post #58 of 96
Tsal, from all the advice here I'm sure you have a lot to think about. Surely you know your husband better than all of us.

It seems there is both a time and money issue. As far as your time, he can't tell you what to do with your time. It's your own choice. He should want you to be happy and support what makes you happy.
But if your family can't afford to give cakes away then your own family should come first.
He should not decide that you can't make a profit if you are still just practicing. Who said you would continue in the same speed the day you open your business? Of course you will get faster. Since you make beautiful cakes (and you enjoy making them), when time is right you could definitely have a successful business.

I have three kids under 6 as well so I understand both the time limitations and the NEED to do something besides caring for the children we love so much. We sacrifice so much (willingly) to our children. I believe that doing something just for our own pleasure makes us better mothers and wives. So if you do decide to hang up your apron, please let it be your OWN decision and not something you are told to do.

How about you buy some cake dummies? That way you don't have to actually bake a cake just to get experience. And you can take as long as you like to decorate it since no cake is going bad. That way you can get the experience you need to get faster, but you skip baking time. And you can take pictures of cakes for your portfolio (for a future business). Once you have the picture you can either add things to make a new design or simply scrape it off and start all over using the same cake dummy.
If you want to make real cakes for friends, let them buy the ingredients. That is not asking much of them.

Good luck and hope to hear from you in this post!
Sofia
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Sofia
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post #59 of 96
I gave up a nursing career to stay home and just be there, but that was over 30 years ago.......its really a a tough decision. I cried, but decided to give it up for family first. I am not so sure I would do it again if time was turned back. You need to do what makes you happy too. I think only you can decide what will work and wont work in your house. Good Luck.
post #60 of 96
Thread Starter 
Wow! I really want to thank everyone for their kind words, their honesty, and their advice. Dh left last night for a business trip so this is the first chance Ive had to respond since Im juggling the house and my 3 monkeys solo.

I appreciate the different perspectives. I would like to clarify a few things. Firstly, I have never left such a mess before. This was an extreme exception because knowing that the maximum time I would have to sleep was 2 hours or so (my kids are up at 5:30), I had to choose between cleaning and sleeping, and I chose sleep because cleaning would have cut my precious little sleep time in half! So, dh is not constantly cleaning up due to my hobby. If he had woken up to a clean kitchen, I doubt he would have freaked out to such a degree (I also have our coffee on a timer and didnt do that either so I had a cranky caffeine-deprived, mess-hating dh on my hands). I think it was the straw that broke the camels back after having so many consecutive caking weekends.

Also, while Ill agree that dhs choice of words was very poor (in terms of that was your last cake), I know that he was speaking irrationally out of frustration. From his perspective, I spend hours and hours working in the kitchen for people who would not spend as much working on something for me, and it is costing us money. I look at each project as a chance to improve my skills and evolve as an artist. I love the design phase, the CC research for technique, and the actual decorating. He doesnt understand that. Dh does make a good living, but I have invested a good amount of money into supplies over the past couple of years since Ive been caking (and since Im not selling, we have not recouped any of it). He doesnt see it as an investment though because I dont think he really thinks this is a viable business option for me (at least now) because of the amount of time I spend on each cake.

There was a lot of focus in some of the posts about my marriage being more important than caking. We have a good marriage and I would never jeopardize that. Dh is a good husband, is very involved with the kids, and he generally supports me (he has even me out on a few cakes) and has watched the kids plenty, but he wants weekends to be about family and I respect that..

I have made a total of 20 cakes since starting out, and I can see clearly that Im evolving as an artist. If you look at my first cake (for my ds first bday), the powdered sugar on the overly-thick appliqu├ęs was showing! I also recently realized that my tiers were too shallow and since Ive discovered that, I feel that my cakes have moved to the next level. Im constantly awed looking at the artistry on this site, and I always want to learn new techniques. Caking provides me with a creative outlet and I know that I do need that.

I also believe that things unfold a certain way for a reason and if youre struggling with something, its time to re-evaluate. Im very grateful for the Dora cake because it has forced me to really take a good long look at where Im at. Do I think Im ready to jump into business? Nope. My kids are still too young for me to consider starting up a business and I feel Im still working on basics. Do I need to streamline and find quicker ways to do things? Absolutely! When I think about how long it takes me to smooth my SMBC, it makes me cringe. This may be because of the recipe Im using, or the way Im whipping it up thats causing bubbles, but the only way to tell for sure is to practice. If Im doing cakes every three months or so instead of at least once a month, its going to take me much longer to improve.

I will not take on any more cakes for the next little while, just to give dh a break from having to hear about and deal with my caking. I have decided that the next few months are going to be about trying to complete things faster (any time-saving tips welcome!!) as that seems to be my biggest challenge with caking.

I love the dummy-cake idea and I did recently order dummies to practice on.

Thank you all for your input this was not an easy weekend for me, but Im grateful for it.
Optimism produces the very success it desires and expects.
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Optimism produces the very success it desires and expects.
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