I've Seen The Light... Long And Might Be Confusing

Business By wgoat5 Updated 16 Jul 2008 , 12:31pm by Donnagardner

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wgoat5 Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 6:05am
post #1 of 38

Hello cake friends icon_smile.gif . I am a illegal home baker... There I said it LOL. Have been for awhile.. But... after taking a much needed break with my kids (back has been out OUCH) I have decided to no longer bake for profit. Not until I have my ducks in a row at least. I have REALLY enjoyed the time off. I have called and cancelled orders that were for in August and Sept. I noticed that when I did this for profit... out of my home... I totally changed the way I acted towards my family. I was snippy... tired....and ohhh wayyyy to a$$holish (not a word but I love it LOL) to other people I love and care about. I actually would start getting sick near the due dates. Tummy would start bothering me and it became a real chore to do ANYTHING.... I would do gumpaste or fondant work (figures and such) WAY before the cake was due so that I would have that out of the way....and with 3 kids and a big ole kid as a DH I would have trouble keeping my work out of their way icon_rolleyes.gif ... I would bark at them constantly about being careful.
Don't get me wrong. I LOVE this... I love the feeling it gives me when I hand over a cake to a client (that is if I like the cake which is rare), but I find it way to stressful in this point of my life to do this all the time.

And kids icon_wink.gif it is true... the real money is in the wedding cakes. Which I won't do because the stress factor is way to much. I have ZERO confidence. Doesn't matter that the clients like my cakes... or what have you.. but I truly see every imperfection in my work...which makes me a nervous wreck.

I bow down to you all that do this EVERY day. It isn't easy... it takes YEARS of practice and I wouldn't EVER tell anybody to quit their day job unless they have either years of bakery work behind them or at least doing a amazing job in a short time. Takes committment...takes family time...takes a sincere WANT to make everybody happy. Sometimes I lack that part. Sometimes I give up.

I will be going down the list of my clients tomorrow and will inform them I won't be doing paid cakes anymore. (all of them know I'm not licensed and they don't care)

But just to make sure you all understand that this isn't one of those posts where I am saying goodbye....just goodbye to being illegal LOL. FOR NOW icon_smile.gif

Hope I didn't waste too much of your time


37 replies
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margaretb Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 6:33am
post #2 of 38

Thanks for posting this. I have considered doing paid cakes, but I have three kids (5, 3, 7 months), so I really appreciate your candidness.

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dragonflydreams Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 6:37am
post #3 of 38

. . . does that mean you will still be a part of this community . . . I'm hoping you are not saying good bye . . . icon_confused.gificon_confused.gif . . . please say you will still be here daily visiting with us . . .

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roseyrider Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 6:58am
post #4 of 38

Hey, I get ou. I have two kids and find myself running around all day and then working through the night to get done. CRABBY isn't the word for me after three days without sleep. I even had my DH put gates on the kitchen to keep my 2 year old out. I have found a solution tho, I just secured a really well priced shop and am going to be there all day every week day. No more running around, no more finding other things that are 'more important' and NO MORE SLEEPLESS NIGHTS!!!!! Hope this works 'cause I am making a decent second income from this! Enjoy your family time!

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lovely Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 6:59am
post #5 of 38
Originally Posted by dragonflydreams

. . . does that mean you will still be a part of this community . . . I'm hoping you are not saying good bye . . . icon_confused.gificon_confused.gif . . . please say you will still be here daily visiting with us . . .

Ditto icon_biggrin.gif

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littlecake Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 7:05am
post #6 of 38

enjoy your time off...i envy you

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Mike1394 Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 9:43am
post #7 of 38

That's too bad. I hope you find the happiness again. You really do have a great talent.


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wgoat5 Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 12:02pm
post #8 of 38

No no no guys I'm not going to leave here can't leave my cake friends *sniffle* ... I'm just leaving the illegal status.
I can't explain it but...it's not even the getting caught factor. Plain and simple the 1 baker that died not to long ago had done this in our town for 30 years before she died...wasn't ever legal...and I can tell you she made 1/2 of the health depts. cakes...including wedding cakes... Sooo...with that said that aspect of it isn't what made me want to stop. They just have other things to look into here.

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Mike1394 Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 12:19pm
post #9 of 38

Expanding the goat farm are ya? icon_biggrin.gif Hehehehehe


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wgoat5 Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 12:25pm
post #10 of 38

LOL .. Mike !!! LMAO

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sweetviolent Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 12:31pm
post #11 of 38

oh I am so right there with you- it is so hard to have it all. I have lost the joy myself- working part time- 3 kids and a house and multiple cakes yikers!! Take a break- take a deep breath ! good luck!

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poshcakedesigns Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 12:36pm
post #12 of 38

Kudos to you for being able to make that decision.

Maybe when the kids are older you can start up again.

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loriemoms Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 12:43pm
post #13 of 38

Can relate! I hope you do still continue to do it as a hobby,for friends and such, and bring back the joy of decorating.

(afterall, you can take the icing bag away from the decorator but never take the decorator away from the icing bag...or um, something like that!)

Sugar is in your heart!

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sugarcheryl Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 12:53pm
post #14 of 38

I just seen your work it's beautiful. I also understand but if you really enjoy it maybe you will do again and legal once the kids get older. Wish you the best. I made one of your cakes my favorite icon_smile.gif

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luvscakes Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 12:53pm
post #15 of 38

I too appreciate your candidness, and can totally relate.
I have 4 kids- 10,6,4,2 and when I do "my" cakes they know to stay out of my way. I get mean- really mean and totally stress out. My husband often asks why I continue to do them when it makes our home a nightmare (not to mention I can never cook for my family due to cake stuff taking over the kitchen, so we end up eating out more)
I have thought about calling it quits but for now I have tried instead to relax- not stress and not be such a perfectionist (I mean Duff's cakes aren't perfect either and look at how much they charge!)

I hope you enjoy doing cakes for the fun of it again- It will be a time you can work on perfecting your skills!! (And I'm sure your family will love the happier you)

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bethola Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 12:58pm
post #16 of 38


I can relate. I don't have a lot of "clients" and only do cakes for others when I want. But, wedding cakes.....I start losing sleep 3 weeks BEFORE the date and can't relax until the Bride and Groom have seen the cake and are happy. Not worth it.

I've made the decision that I will only do wedding cakes for family and the girls at church. But, now I think I'm going to narrow that field to family only. The next family that will be marrying won't be for ummm......at LEAST 15 years so I think I'm safe there! LOL

Take a BREAK and only do cakes when you want and for whom you want. THAT'S the fun part!


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suzylynn58 Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 1:05pm
post #17 of 38

Christie, I understand completely. I don't see how you mothers with small children do it. My son is college age and I work full time with cakes every weekend and I can hardly keep it together. Believe me, that time with your kids passes so quickly so embrace it and enjoy the heck out of them.

On the other hand, you have a great gift. I dont' believe God gives us talents for no reason and one day you will find your niche. I know your customers are upset, but they will get over it. icon_lol.gif

Hope you stay around and share your charm and wit with us...


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2sdae Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 1:11pm
post #18 of 38

I am right there with ya sista!
We live close so instead enjoy your summer off and come see us at the fair this year. There will be plenty of cool cakes this year and lots of new categories to pursue through too!
Dont for get our get together in fall and all the good stuff coming up... thumbs_up.gif

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margaretb Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 3:42pm
post #19 of 38

It does cross my mind that once you are rested and refreshed and would consider doing cakes again, really jack up your prices. What if you found that some percentage of your customers would still pay? If you had less work and made more money, you might be willing to take on the odd cake.

I do understand that there is more to this than just money, but keep it in mind for the future.

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cakedout Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 4:42pm
post #20 of 38

Your family and your sanity come first! Good for you! thumbs_up.gif

Our children are with us for such a short time...and the cake business will always be there-ready and waiting- in the future, should you decided to take up the icing bag again.

Enjoy your children and the time off! icon_biggrin.gif

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roxxxy_luvs_duff Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 5:01pm
post #21 of 38

I also have 3 kids so I know where your coming from. I decided this month to take a much needed break from cakes and spend the time with my family. I finally have gotten my weekends back and I love it. I also was really snippy with my family and my kids tryng to keep them away from kitchen and out of my cake stuff. Now after having half a month off I dont even think I want to go back to making cakes because I have enjoyed the time off so much.

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NikkiDoc Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 5:15pm
post #22 of 38

I totally understand. I know it must have been hard to come to that decision. I have two young ones and it is so hard to even find the time to practice...so my cakeing hasn't really improved as much as I'd like... but who cares? I'm not able to make a business of it now anyway. I enjoy doing it for family and friends and they like my cakes. Everyone is happy. Maybe some day. I keep on dreaming!

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icantcook Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 5:38pm
post #23 of 38

Just popped in for a quick visit to the site, and Christi, I expected to see my login name at the bottom of your post - I could have written that! Not as well as you wrote it, but I am going through the same thing right now. On days that I am grumpy and SCREAMING at the kids, dh will go look in the cake room to see if there is a project in progress. Pretty bad when they can link them together! And dh asks me, "and you're doing this for FUN? When is the fun part?"

I am keeping my 1 August commitment, but have not accepted any new cake bookings for August. "I am already booked for my family." Haven't decided about September or October yet...

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dragonflydreams Posted 15 Jul 2008 , 5:52pm
post #24 of 38

. . . I can definitely identify with the idea of cakes being toooooo stressful when there is a time line and level of expectation that exceeds my capabilities and I guess this is one reason I would probably never make it in the "business" of caking . . . in my case you might even call it perfection paralysis, I pretty much know I would never be able to live up to my expectations and therefore it could never be a satisfying experience . . . don't get me wrong, I love the "idea" of designing and following through to completion and have had some "limited" success, but I totally understand where the hobby and business line would be a tough line to cross successfully . . . Christi, my friend . . . you do FABULOUS work . . . and I can only hope you can find the niche you are comfortable with . . . family always first . . . they are only with you for a short while (make the best of it) . . . I'm glad to hear we will still be seeing you on line during your sabbatical . . . (and I'm also wondering if you are struggling with this due to other outside influences - specifically the fact that you are also trying to quit smoking at this time . . . one step at a time my friend, one step at a time . . . )

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Carson Posted 16 Jul 2008 , 2:27am
post #25 of 38

I can relate! I have two small kids and a full time regular job. I had a 3 week period of no sleep and stress and decided that I needed some time off. Had that and now am not taking more than 1 cake a week, less if I can get away with it. My husband told me to quit after that month from hell...but that motivates me to go harder (I'm stubborn and I can't let him tell me what to do!) Do what makes you happy, everything else will fall into place!

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superstar Posted 16 Jul 2008 , 2:47am
post #26 of 38

As long as you are still going to be around with your sense of humour & fun, you can take a break. Just keep doing the odd cake to keep your hand in, but don't stress out over cakes.

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milissasmom Posted 16 Jul 2008 , 2:53am
post #27 of 38

I understand how you are feeling! I have a two year old and a husband and can really only bake at night when they are sleeping and the house is quiet. I can't take away time from them...it would make me sad. I have never been a really good sleeper so I can give that up for now. I have honestly stayed awake for 24 hours (up with hubby and baby at six am, done my WIFEY and MOMMY thing, put the baby to bed and cranked out a cake until 5:30 am the next morning)!!!!!!!!! Then I slept til 9 or 9:30. Done this a few times and it works for me. I am so happy you have figured out what is gonna work for you hon! I am sure you will be a happier person!! Good luck my dear...

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wgoat5 Posted 16 Jul 2008 , 3:37am
post #28 of 38

Thanks guys... I do love this... just don't love what it does to me icon_sad.gif

I had some upset customers.. BUT... Might be that I will do an occasional cake... several of my customers said they would pay me more LOL... so if they HAVE to have me do a cake they will pay for it. But I think a baker/decorator is worth that anyways...we take TONS of our time away from our families..and should be paid as well as any other professional icon_smile.gif

Thanks again icon_smile.gif


(And NOTHING would keep me away from CC!!! icon_biggrin.gif )

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2Cupcakes Posted 16 Jul 2008 , 3:42am
post #29 of 38


Where in KY are you?

I understand why you are making this decision. If it's no longer enjoyable, then why put yourself and your family through it?

Friends and family keep asking me to do cakes for them and they refer people to me all the time. I appreciate that they love the taste and designs of my cakes but I don't want to stress over someone else's cake requests. You know? I do cakes and cookies because I love doing them. I want to surprise the birthday girl with a cake. I want to bake for someone. I have a full time job and I don't want the stress of another one. I think I will end up hating to bake and decorate if I have to stress over cake orders.

You are a VERY talented decorator and I hope you keep your passion for cakes. Hugs. icon_smile.gif

Lora Anne

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CeeTee Posted 16 Jul 2008 , 4:07am
post #30 of 38

*applauds your decision* I made the same call a few months back for my sanity's sake, and I don't regret it one bit! I don't have kids, but I do have family that's near and dear, and doing cakes part time was eating away at what little time I had to spend with them.

I also fell victim to the 'Undercharge Curse' and started to resent spending all weekend to make a $10 profit. It almost killed my love of the hobby! Now, I only do cakes for friends and family on a whim, and I've declared myself the official family Birthday Cake baker icon_wink.gif I also plan to continue to do cake decor competitions and have already started to work on my designs for my State Fair cakes! I do take the once in a blue moon paid commissions (usually for co-workers), but I always charge what I'm worth, and if the person passes, no skin off my nose.

Instead of under-the-table work, I now am a WMI @ Michaels teaching two days a week. I get to get in my weekly allotment of sugar play, and still have a life! Not only that, but since having my weekends free, I was able to start dating again and now I have found the most wonderful boyfriend in the world icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif

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