February 21, 2013

Hobbies, Schmobbies...Who Needs 'Em?

It's time for Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop. The prompt I chose?

Tell the story of trying to learn a new talent or hobby that you only pursued briefly.

It's been over five years since I've had a full-time job. Do you know how many hours I need to fill? God forbid that The Mister or The Boy expect me to do housework all day. And even though I love to read, and can waste innumerable hours on Facebook and other things on the interwebs, a side of me thinks I should be doing something useful. 

I do useless so much better.

Occasionally, I come up with a harebrained scheme and try a new skill (just like I started this blog out of a desire to "do" something). I've rediscovered cooking and baking and have tried lots of recipes. I make our birthday cakes, but they're not all fancied up like the stuff you get from a bakery.

Then disaster came in my inbox.

"Look! Michael's has this coupon for 40% on Wilton cake decorating stuff. I'll take their class! Yippee! Yay for me!" The Mister encouraged this activity (he likes me to be productive too...and he likes cake).

I registered and shopped for the supplies I'd need. I was actually excited (and more than a bit nervous) about what I'd have to do.

Michael's / Wilton saw me coming

Reality slapped me in the face at the very start.

I am NOT crafty. I'm shy around people when I think I'm as dumb as a rock. I found the Wilton class to be madly frustrating. I have no craftiness in me (other than an occasional well-turned phrase). I turned into an ugly person at home and at class when I could not make my flowers and shells and other nonsense look anywhere close to what was expected. I cursed. I whined. I wanted to throw inanimate objects.

I know some of this is due to my being a perfectionist - I want to do it perfectly the first time. But even with practice, I wasn't making much progress. The list of things that could not be put on a cake by me was longer than the list of what would look good.

What the cake was SUPPOSED  to look like

I am also left handed - the bulk of the instructions were for right handed folks (as are most craft-related instructions); even the instructors were right handed; they had to think 'backwards' to assist me in class.

The instructor, a chipper gal, said, "Use this rose nail and make frosting roses - look how easy!" 

I was convinced she was one of Satan's minions, sent to torment me even before I burn in the pits of Hell.

As far as overall craftiness is concerned, It probably didn't help that I have double vision. I can't draw or cut a straight line to save my life.

So, after spending a small fortune for a lovely tackle box-like object filled with 
instruments of torture tips and frosting bags and such, I abandoned any desire to improve my skills...but I'm more than happy to let other family members decorate cakes I've baked.

This class was supposed to be fun. As far as I'm concerned, I'd rather be strapped to a dentist's chair and have a root canal without ane
sthesia, while polka music wafts from the speakers in the ceiling rather than attend another class like that.

I'm not ashamed to say that I am a Wilton class dropout.

What MY cake looked like (shudder)


  1. Aw, you're being way too hard on yourself. Your cake looks fine! Good job!

  2. I'm pretty sure my cake decorating class products would have pretty much the same outcome as yours! With store bakeries doing such a bang up job lately, let's just stick to browsing the interwebs and let them do the icing roses!! :-)

  3. Keep trying. I am self taught, started out using sandwiach bags as decorating bags. Stood at the bakery window and watched the lady do her thing, then went home and did my thing. My cakes look like the fancy scmancy kind now.

  4. I have always thought about trying one of those Wilton classes, but I know how shy I tend to be around crowds of people that I don't know. Your cake looks pretty though!

  5. Aww. I tried that once. I bought all of the supplies and then... nothing. Of course I am much better at useless too!

    Find me at Ambyr in the Sky

  6. I don't think your cake is bad at all. Seriously.

  7. I thought your cake looked good, too. And in the end, who cares what a cake looks like? I'll bet it was scrumptious.

    I do GORGEOUS cakes. I order them from the bakery...


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