I have spent my entire life around cakes. As a young child I remember going to visit my Grandma and Grandpa and feeling excited to see what new and beautiful cake she would be decorating when we got there. Her cakes were the most beautiful things I had ever seen and I would sit for hours and watch her work. She was a very particular woman and I see now why we were allowed to sit in the room as long as we promised to not touch the table. Bumping the table would get you into more trouble then any other offense. Grandpa took it all lightly and would take us into the other room and make a plan of attack. He would find a way to distract Grandma and we were to head for the cupboard. Grandpa would explain in detail where the treats were hiding and we were to steal enough for us and himself. “Lowell!” my Grandma would yell, after returning to her chair and finding that something was missing or askew. Grandpa would snicker and we would both bolt for the door. Grandpa couldn’t bolt very quickly, he was a large man and walked with two canes, one in each hand. he was the kindest, funniest man I have ever known. He cared for people deeply and loved to push Grandma’s buttons, in his defense, they were pretty easy to push.
Once I was older, had gotten married and had our first child, I realized Grandma was getting older too. That was a revelation to me, now that I was not so self involved and had learned to care for others. Anyway, I realized Grandma’s talent and knowledge of cake decorating would go with her when she died if I did not learn from her. She made the most beautiful cakes I had ever seen, her roses where more beautiful and her detail more exquisite. I started going to her house once a week and she would eagerly teach me all she knew. I really got to know her better then.
She would tell me stories about her childhood and we would spend the evening discussing the thickness of icing and practicing new techniques.
Now I get to continue the tradition of cake decorating. Grandma passed away almost 2 years ago. I am grateful I took the time to learn from her, to watch her and to talk with her. She was a great friend.