My sister, like me, put the cart before the horse. Met a boy, fell in love, moved in together, got engaged, and then had babies. Actually getting married was put on the back burner; two kids, a house and careers saw to that.
Now, imagine my excitement when she called me and said that they had actually set a date! I love weddings, I'm a terminal wedding-cryer - the thought of two people publicly pledging their love (and saying all the soppy love and commitment stuff) reduces me to an emotional wreck. The fact that I would be that wreck at my sister's wedding was almost too much excitement to contain. I started imagining it with gusto (and pre-crying, I kid you not).
Being a good sister, and inappropriately involved in others' lives, I asked if there was anything I could do for her. "Well", she said "could you make the cake?". Could I make the cake? Of course I could make the cake! Wholeheartedly I agreed to make a wedding cake, for a wedding, that people would be able to look at and taste and comment on.
I started imagining how I would make a cake that would send all the other cakes into a spiral of jealousy. The best, most beautiful, cake in the whole entire world. A cake fitting of my beautiful sister on her most magical day!
Then I remembered that the only cakes I have made were for my children's Birthday parties...and they looked like this:
This is a carousel. Yes, that horse's legs are broken (you can see them down in front of the "cake" there). Yes, this took me a long time to make - my time spent : results ratio was well disappointing. We didn't actually end up eating this cake, we had the chocolate caramel cheesecake I made instead. It was awesome. (And yes, that is a foil-wrapped chopping board...)
This is perhaps the best of my cake-making abilities. A pink square that is almost, but not entirely, covered in icing. It tasted fantastic - as chocolate cakes do - but looks like...well...a pink square that is almost, but not entirely, covered in icing...
This cake is a pinata (I don't know how to do the squiggly thingy above the 'n', let's pretend I have though). Under the chocolate shell - that took about 5 hours and 15 re-melts - is a two-tier pink and purple monstrosity with chocolate coins in the top. And yes, that is a foil-wrapped plate... (The plate was a giant melamine one that I had melted in the dishwasher once so it rocked slightly.)
So, at this stage I have promised my sister a wedding cake. A wedding cake. For an actual wedding!
Luckily my Sister set the date well before her wedding, I can't exactly remember how long before - perhaps a year or a year and a half - so I had this unflappable confidence that I would surely become the world's best cake maker in this time.
Let's see how that goes...