They are called crisis or flares and I was coming off one when I decided I wanted to bake a nice cake. My last week was a blur of pain and exhaustion that I pushed thru. It began with the little warnings that let me know that a flare is on the horizon: constipation, the low grade fever, stiff painful swollen joints. In spite of that, I tended to my yard/garden and completed what I needed to complete. I made a birthday cake for my daughter and delivered it, so, under the circumstances, I was doing pretty good. Flare ups are now a part of my life and I just push thru and continue on.
For me, baking a cake is a piece of cake. I keep flour, cake flour and box cake mixes on the shelf. Eggs are always in the refrigerator and butter…well sometimes I run out of that. But this time, baking this cake made me think about life in general and this cake baking project got on my last nerve.
This is how it went: My husband asked how the birthday cake tasted and I responded that it was good. “Nice. At least she got a cake.” Having said that, I now had a reason to bake a cake and the following pictures will tell the story.
· 1. I set the butter and eggs out to get room temperature; took the fruit out to thaw. Then went to the store to get some sprinkles or something to decorate the cake.
· 2. Prepared my favorite pans by oiling the surface. Although I used a box mix, I sifted that flour, added the ¾ cup of water, 3 eggs, a stick of butter and a tablespoon of vanilla extract. Mixed everything by using a hand mixer.
· 3. Baked at 350° for 27 minutes (follow the box’s directions)
· 4. Allowed the cake to cool.
· 5. Applied Vanilla Frosting while warm. Removed cooled cake from pan, added sliced, thawed strawberries.
· 6. Removed the second layer from pan, placed that layer on top of the frosted, fruited layer.
On step 6, the devil’s number, is where “the sh!+ hit the fan”. The second heart fell apart! Maybe it was the butter, I don’t know. The cake was cooled, yet it pretty much fell apart. Thank goodness I had lots of icing left because it is the icing that is holding the top layer together.
So I had an ugly cake that is glued together with store bought vanilla frosting. There was sliced fruit left and that was placed around the edges of the heart. Now the thing looked stupid. Well, 6 strawberries were halved and the cherries for tonight’s smoothie was used “for cosmetic purposes only”. Purple candy dots were placed in the center. Bam! Put it in the refrigerator so it can set.
The project got on my nerves because I lost control; the cake fell apart and a crumbled cake was not a part of my plans. Like life. Autoimmune disorders are not included in one’s plans yet some of us have to deal with them. Sometimes you plan and save and plan and the thing falls apart anyway. What do you do when your cake falls apart?
If you put some flour, eggs, sugar, butter, milk and extract together and your cake falls apart, you can make cake pops. Craftsy has a free class on creating cake pops; you will use the imperfect cake to make pops.
When you plan and prepare and save your money or your energy or your time for what you plan and things fall apart in spite of your effort, just get creative. Be patient and do whatever to hold it all together. For the cake, I used icing. Icing is sweet and tasty and it worked. For life I use faith; faith and trust in God. Like icing, faith holds me together. I trust in the Lord with all my heart that these flares will be a mere flare: a week or so of some discomfort and not a lifetime of pain and exhaustion.
By the way, this ugly cake tastes good! Psalm 34:8 🤗