It's hard to believe that five years ago I had just ventured into my love for sugar art and thought that it might be a good idea to document it all in a blog. I didn't ever think that people would care enough to read what I had to write or see what I had to post. And even until today, I am always grateful for every comment that is left on my blog, Facebook page and every student I meet in class who tells me they read my blog (I am so very touched!) and that they really related to it.
Five years ago I was shyly making cakes, cupcakes and cookies for anyone who would try some. I was still working out what I wanted for my future and what real life was all about. Today, as I write this, I am sitting in my hotel room in Jakarta where I am teaching sugar art for a week and having the best time with a bunch of the friendliest students I've ever met. I am truly lucky to have these opportunities come my way.
My first class in Jakarta! Sorry for the bad photo, only had time to take one with my phone.
I know I have come a long way and still have a much further road ahead of me. In the last half decade I've made so many wonderful cakey friends in real life and online. I have enjoyed sharing knowledge with them and watching them all grow too. I have also encountered some of the best customers and students, plus I'm also lucky to have some talented people working for me and supporting me.
Mostly, I am truly grateful for The Boyfriend (his name is Nick by the way - for those of you who have asked). He is more than my right hand, he's almost both my left and right hands. Some of you have asked how I cope with everything and he is the answer. On nights were it is almost midnight and I'm about ready to collapse with exhaustion, he helps me make ganache and clean up. On weekends when I am teaching, he delivers all of my orders and gets the class lunch. On weeks when I am just too busy, he helps me bake some of my cakes. He is my overall quality control, my encouragement when I am feeling down, my biggest believer and on top of all that, he also maintains my website for me.
In the last five years I have also come to learn what I do definitely not all sugar, rainbows and green grass.
I left my corporate job more than two years ago because I wanted to avoid the politics and red tape that came as part of the job. Who knew that the world of cake decorating is equally political and just like every other industry some people can be just plain mean and hurtful? I thought being your own boss would help me avoid all that but as I grow and become more immersed in the cake world, I realised that while there are a tonne of family, real and virtual friends that are out there supporting me in what I love to do the most, there are also those who are out to push me back down to where they think I belong.
I don't claim to be the best at what I do, but I do love it with a passion and I believe it's that passion that drives me to better myself. I am not a pastry chef, an art major, some culinary genius, trained as an apprentice or a certified trainer but I do my best to learn, be creative and try new techniques. I don't think that one of those above titles should define me or give me credibility but I would like to think that my work and recommendations speak for itself.
I stumbled into this career in a non traditional way but it does not mean that I can't work just as hard to achieve great results. Although I don't have any 'real' qualifications, I am lucky to have had the opportunity to learn from some of the best in the industry and have also learned some major life and business lessons along the way. This is me. This is how I do it. I have fun doing what I do for a living and I hope everyone else can enjoy it as much as I do :)