They say you find love when you least expect it, or when you stop looking for it. I knew this to be true from my personal experience. However, I didn’t expect the same philosophy would hold true for my true calling.
I didn’t set out to become a baker/cake artist. My background is in Information Technology where I spent more than ten years climbing the corporate ladder until I became the primary care giver to my newborn little girl. To say that life, and my career took an unexpected turn is an understatement. As I embarked in what I now know to be without a shadow of a doubt the toughest job on the planet, I found myself embracing my new role. I, like many other primary caregivers, thought I would eventually go back to the corporate grind so I decided to finish my undergraduate degree in Information Systems and Operations Management to ensure I reduced that gap on my resume. There I was, super dad by day, and “non-traditional” student at NOVA and GMU by night. I had it all figured out, or so I thought.
It was my daughter’s 4th birthday that sparked my interest in baking. I’ve always been good with my hands. From our home to automobile maintenance and repair, to decoupage and tea parties (yes boas included), I’ve never shied away from an opportunity to learn something new. There I was full of hope and a desire to make the best cake ever, as my little girl deserved nothing less. So, enter YouTube “University” where I spent hours researching the basics of baking and cake decorating. When I finally felt comfortable and armed with my new-found knowledge, I took the plunge and made my first cake. It was a half sheet cake with vanilla buttercream frosting covered with an edible cake topper from the movie “Frozen”, (I can still recite most of the lyrics to all the songs). I put forth my best effort but my perfectionism got the best of me as I focused on my mistakes. Reluctantly I still presented the cake to my daughter and her friends at her birthday party. To say her reaction was priceless is an understatement. It was at that moment that I realized that my perceived imperfections on the cake didn’t matter. My little girl was happy as can be. That was the moment I knew I wanted to keep giving her (and my then one-year old son) that feeling year after year, so I did. As she and her brother grew older, my abilities grew, out with the simple sheet cake – in with the 3D cakes, a Waterfall cake, and a full-scale pot of pasta, to name a few. As the word and my Facebook feed got out, friends, family, and classmates started asking me to make custom cakes for their special occasions. Other cakes include a biplane travel cake, a life size wine cooler (wine included), dinosaurs, circuit board cakes, mermaids, book stacks, and many more. Every one of these cakes had one thing in common – it brought a big smile to the recipient’s face, and that is something worth continuing to share.
Fast forward to 2018 when I decided to take the next step in my journey and launch The Cake Pop. While I am starting slow as a custom made to order shop, I look forward to the day when you can walk into my shop and enjoy all our treats. Best of all I look forward to giving each and every single one of you taking the time to read this excerpt a reason to smile one cake, one treat at a time….
“The Cake Pop”