This I Believe

Heidi - Bainbridge Island, Washington
Entered on November 7, 2007
Age Group: 30 - 50
Themes: love

I believe in homemade birthday cakes….well homemade cakes of any kind really. It could be growing up on a hill named Baker that lead me to appreciate and find comfort in baked goods, or more likely it was a mom who baked cinnamon rolls, cookies, bread, and cakes. Now, I get great satisfaction from looking at and eating a homemade birthday cake. But that’s not all. Oh no. Making a homemade birthday cake is more about the process than about the outcome. It is a gift of love to whoever you are making it for. First, you get to think about the flavor that person wants. Is he a carrot cake person like my father-in-law, or a chocolate cake person like my husband? Is she a caramel cake person like my friend, or a likes-all-cake-flavors person like my mom? Then you think about decorating the cake. This is not usually as important for an adult, but for a kid, it’s one of the most important parts. Will you have a blue cake, a dog cake, a spider cake, a fairy cake, or an m&m cake? The possibilities are endless. Your gift is your chance to celebrate that person.

But if that were all, it wouldn’t be enough to make me want to write this. You see making a homemade birthday cake, unless you are a professional baker, means that probably it won’t look perfect. Which is okay. It’s actually more than okay. It’s wonderful to admit your own imperfection, to admit in yourself as a work in progress, to love yourself anyway, to love your creative side, even if it does make a cake that needs chopsticks to keep it from sliding. And most importantly, to teach our kids that beauty is not about airbrushed perfection. Life is not about hiring joy out to the professionals, but getting mucky and frosting covered all in the process of living. Life is like making homemade birthday cakes for those we love. It is messy, it is full of mistakes and surprise fixes, it is delicious, it is about embracing ourselves, it is being creative, it is all about love. Life is love. Homemade birthday cakes are love. This I believe.