puppy dog tales

I’d thought about starting a blog about my time spent in a kitchen for a while.  I think I’d even got so far as to save its name on a blog server somewhere.  But then, I didn’t.  (Good story, huh?)  However, as I have found with some regularity in the past nine months, my Guide Dog puppy (Ember) landed me in a position slightly outside my comfort zone last week; and, as a result, here we are.  Let me tell you.

This is Ember.

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Total puppy dog love of my life, I have no shame in admitting.  As I write this, she is in her customary position, lying at my feet.  The best wee pal.  Anyway, Ember is in training to be a Guide Dog and has been with us since she was 7 weeks old.  She’ll leave at 14 months and my heart will break.  I’m getting sidetracked.  How did Ember make me start a blog?

Well, as a result of Ember and her many canine chums, we had a Puppy Party last week to celebrate 100 Guide Dog pups having been Puppy Walked in Northern Ireland.  (We even made the news – look!)  It was quite an experience – 37 pups in one hotel function room – but such a fun celebration.  I was due to make some cupcakes to share, but this got upgraded to a cake – the cake – and I got a bit of stage fright.  I’d never made a professional cake before; and, by that I mean, covered in fondant with handmade decorations.

After much browsing of Pinterest, baking blogs and Facebook, I came up with the idea and spent a lot of time watching this video on youtube.  In any case, it was baked, crumb coated, buttercreamed, iced and decorated over a couple of evenings; and, I really was quite pleased with it in the end.  I didn’t get a great picture of it (dark coloured pups are hard to photograph: real or fondant!) but hopefully you get the idea.

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Since the Puppy Party, one of the other Guide Dog volunteers has asked me to so something similar for her son’s engagement party cake – but with King Charles Spaniels!  This will be my very first bit of paid baking and I feel a bit apprehensive about it.  Will it work out?  Am I up to the challenge?  What on earth do you charge?!

And here we are.  That’s the back story to the blog.  A combination of cataloguing my bakes and therapy as I take on tasks I’m not sure I’m ready for!  Next step: pick a colour scheme and design for the engagement cake.  Oh, and plan a cake for my sister’s birthday… which is the SAME DAY as the engagement party!!  No joke.

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