Hello friends! I need an ear and help, so here it goes....................................
I wish I had better news to report, but this is the situation at hand:
Question first: How and CAN YOU freeze a decorated wedding cake for use in a few weeks. I have a bride that booked me for march and paid her deposit but:
My 11 year old son was hit in the head while on a swing by another swing facing opposite him. The seat part was made of wood and went haywire after a kid tossed it for another kid to get on it and the child missed catching it, and went into the side of his head and he lost consciousness. After being rushed to the Children's hospital, he lost consciousness again, but was revived after a while. He has memory issues, vision disturbance, heart trauma, and the list goes on. To top of everything my husband just got military orders for us to move to Colorado! Colorado just happens to have the best brain injury treatment for kids so we are going in 2 weeks for both reasons. I have a few catering employees I only use for big functions that I can depend on to keep it froze and deliver it, but I have never been in this situation before and this bride has ALWAYS said if she ever got married she wanted to use me exclusively. I can't fly back because of my son's treatments and if my hubby deploys I really can't leave. Any suggestions on freezing, etc? Help! Thanks for the listening at least
oh what a great thing to get to take your little boy to the best place to treat his injuries -- whoa --- what an ordeal -- and your husband might be deployed -- wow --
first of all -- so sorry for his injuries -- and many thanks to you and your husband for your service -- sincere appreciation --
i think you should explain to the bride and get her input first -- i would suggest that you let her find someone else -- you really have more than enough on your plate than to be connected with this cake for the next 8 weeks even if it is long distance -- it's something that is out of your control to bring to fruition and i just don't think you need it -- your sanity is much more important than a cake -- you need every bit of you right now --
some people freeze cakes with no problem -- depends on the decor etc and mostly it needs to be gradually defrosted --
what kind of cake did she order? and how far is the move to colorado? is the military moving you?
AOh my goodness that's a lot to deal with! So sorry to hear about your son's accident - how awful for all of you :eek:. I think you need to have a very honest conversation with your client about your situation. Ask her if she would even be okay with you freezing her entire cake for a couple weeks. Maybe she wouldn't and will let you off the hook because this is the ONLY way you can still do her cake. Do you know another decorator in your area who does really good work you could refer her to because you have more than enough on your plate and your priority has to be your family. Of course you would aplogize profusely but this is such an extreme situation! I'm sure others will have specific tips on freezing the cake but I would try hard not to do it.
Thank you K8Memphis!
My sincere appreciation that you acknowledge the sacrifice these soldiers make for us. He just found out he might be doing some pretty dangerous work which I cannot give info on, so I not only have my little one to worry about, he is also on my mind. Hopefully he will be the last ,if at all, to deploy. The cake is super simple:
3 tier square buttercream cake, with ribbon at the bottom of each tier, and peacock feathers coming out of the top with their monogram topper. Florals will just be put on sporadically in a few corners. The travel is going to be from NC to Colorado. A MAJOR Trip! We are moving ourselves due to leaving a week earlier than his report date to get to the hospital for my son, so we are moving quite quickly to get him in to the specialists and hospital. Traveling with 3 cars, a penske truck and 5 kiddos is a bit much, but we are a close family, we stick together, and will make it happen with a smile. We are all thinking about that precious boy that has to get there. Time is of the essence is what the doctor told us, so we are moving like lightening. I am so true to my cake business as well and I hate to just not do it and risk her being upset, and angry bc it's so close and she loves my cake. I really don't need to have this on my plate, but I guess I'm being a bit of a worry wart right now on every level. ahhh..........This really does help to talk to someone else and hear their perspective. Thanks a million for responding to me at all
Thank you PastryBagLady! I am considering that as an option. I will have to make a decision by next friday on what to do. I'm so nervous about the response that might come from it....sigh...
I am going to make some calls and ask some local decorators for help
So sorry to hear of your son's accident and your husband's deployment at such a bad timing - our hearts go out for you, and our thoughts and prayers are with you.
Your bride sounds like a client, not a best friend. So this is business. If you were weren't self employed, your boss would give you compassionate leave (its law in Australia), so be the best boss to yourself and give yourself compassionate leave from this cake.
Cake sounds simple enough (I assume real peacock feathers, rather than handmade) so CC members in NC area, rally around our sister and offer to take on the job.
If you still feel super bad to totally walk-away, then just offer to bake the cake, (then freeze) and hand over to another decorator to ice/decorate/deliver.
Magic Mouthfuls said: ..........So sorry to hear of your son's accident and your husband's deployment at such a bad timing - our hearts go out for you, and our thoughts and prayers are with you........... offer to bake the cake, (then freeze) and hand over to another decorator to ice/decorate/deliver.............
I double and triple what she has said.
Oh thank you all so much. You have no idea how much a simple kind word makes a person in my situation feel much better. I lost my job because I couldn't work and be at the hospital, therapy sessions, and emergency rooms and work at the same time, so all we have is going to getting us there. I never thought that I could possibly lose my child, but now that it's presented, I choose to pray and seek good cake counsel in a situation like this. I just can't think correctly right now, and needed my cake friends near and far. I don't know you personally but I THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, for your advice and even responding to me.
Is there any cake central folks in your area. I wish I could help you out, but maybe there is some here that could step in and do the cake for you. Best of luck with your son. I am a nurse, try to remember that kids are very resilient .
Thank you Hobbist! I'll try to remember that. How do i find out if there are any Cake Central people in my area?
Thank you K8Memphis!
My sincere appreciation that you acknowledge the sacrifice these soldiers make for us.
no no no no no no no -- not just soldiers YOU too -- no there's a ton of sacrifice made by the spouses and families too
thank you too
I hate to just not do it and risk her being upset, and angry bc it's so close and she loves my cake. I really don't need to have this on my plate, but I guess I'm being a bit of a worry wart right now on every level.
no one would fault you for taking care of your boy -- nothing trumps that -- nothing -- you don't need the cake on you -- she will only be upset because your son was injured -- it's ok -- let her find her own cake -- it's ok --
hope your son gets all the best care and fully recovers so fast the doctors are astounded -- i hope your husband stays safe and i hope you give yourself a big break and let the cake go -- there are much bigger cupcakes to frost fish to fry --
best of the best to you -- traveling mercies and tons of prayers and a big hug
Ok your kid comes first. End of story. This isn't like he just has a cold or something. He has a life-threatening injury that you need to move out of state to get treatment for. Second, your husband is about to be deployed and leave with you 5 kids, one of whom needs serious medical attention.
Time to tell her you cannot make this cake. You need to call her and explain what is happening. Give her a full refund and the names of as many other decorators as you can. You can even offer to cover the additional cost for the cake if you want. This is a situation beyond your control and in the scheme of things it trumps her wedding. I know this is one of the most important days of her life and she really only wants your cake but frankly she will need to get over it. You can certainly offer to do it weeks ahead of time and freeze but honestly I think you have more than a few other things you need to be focusing on.
Be prepared for her to be upset. There's nothing you can do about that. Just do your best to help her find someone else. It's ok to feel guilty but you need to focus on your family way more than you need to do her cake.
K8Memphis thank you for that statement. The spouses and families DO go through alot, especially the children, when the spouse is in the service. You are right as well as CakesbyCathy. I am going to take in everything and figure out a way to have this conversation with her AFTER I find another great baker in my area that can help me with this. That way at least it will soften the blow and I will already have someone to do it for her. I have enough pressure on me as it is to get so much done in so short of a time anyway.
My best to you and your family. Have you spoken to your customer? She may surprise you with understanding and compassion. There are many people, including brides-to-be, who realize that unexpected circumstances create changes.
I think you should talk with her today, don't even wait until you have a back up. Give her the most notice possible which would be right now. Her second choice may not be who you would suggest so that research time may not even be needed. She may already have a second choice. Before you call you should decide what, if anything, you are realistically capable of taking on. Nothing all the way to doing everything including making freezing arrangements. It probably would be best and simplest for all if you just declined the order and return the deposit.
ACompletely agree with denetteb! She needs to know ASAP. Don't waste your time and energy on unnecessary phone calls. Apologize profusely, give her some names and numbers, return her deposit (maybe with a little extra if you want) and wish her well - and you're DONE.
If you wanted to find CC people in your area, I would start a new thread with that specific question/location in the subject line.
And good luck to you. You have an impossibly difficult number of things going on all at the same time. Trying to deal with a move, deployment and childs head injury separately would be unfathomably difficult, all three at once, with 5 kids just sounds overwhelming. I am in MN so unable to help, wish I was closer and I would help you pack, etc.
AI don't have anything new to add from those that have offered great suggestions so far but my prayers and hugs to your son your husband and to you (and the other kiddies). Best! T
Prayers for your son & your family. Hope things are looking up.
If, with all of the upset, you can do the cake, you can freeze it.
Box the completed cake [if you don't have freezer space that tall, figure out a good way to divide it so that it can be easily boxed and then re-stacked]. Wrap the box in several layers of saran wrap & a layer of foil. Freeze.
24 hrs. before display, place still wrapped box[es] in refrigerator. Right b/4 display [should be several hours before actual cutting/serving], place wrapped box[es] on counter to come to room temp. Remove from boxes, stack on site.
These cakes were handled in this manner--frozen for almost 2 weeks and defrosted per instructions--and the flowers were placed by the client. No problems with the fondant & no bleeding of the ruby red damask.
Thank you all for your help! Just an update: I did notify her and I also called another cake designer that I did a show with a little while ago to see if she could take it on and she agreed to do it! I was so relieved! The bride was informed and rather than being upset she was understanding and even said she would check on us because she Felt that I was more of a friend from the day we met, and the way I treated my customers like family was just awesome! I felt like at least....if only for a second...I could breathe. My husband is awaiting the final word on deployment status and my son has had no change at all. It's touch and go right now with him. He could be fine one second and completely collapse the next. We are all awaiting test results that will tell us his fate. I know only God knows it, so I stay hopeful as well as my family. Through it all we have laughed, cried, and even made memories we hope he will remember...even if it's only for an hr....we just hope he remembers. Thank you for all your love and support on here. Love you all and will keep you updated. Wish I could bake something!
P.S. On a happy note, we ended up loving Colorado! Hey you gotta find something to smile about while you are in the storm! Take care
AGod bless you so much -- thanks for the update -- north carolina's loss is colorado's gain -- best of the best to you and yours -- praying for your sweet little boy and the big one too, all of you [COLOR=red]♥[/COLOR]
Thanks for the update. Very glad to hear you were able to find someone else to take on the cake and that the bride was understanding and supportive. So great that you are enjoying Colorado and that you are having some time there to settle in before your husband is deployed. Hopefully your son will stabilize soon. Head injuries are a long slow road to improvement, hope he is on that path soon.