Monday, 28 February 2011

Organised Chaos!

Mother Nature certainly knew how to unleash her fury upon Queensland this year. With Mammoth rainfall over Christmas and the early weeks of January- localised flooding was already apparent.  Emerald and Rockhampton were flooded out, and the state was banding together to help those who had lost everything rebuild.
Then on one dark Monday a freak flash flood hit much closer to home, through  Toowoomba and the Downs district- leaving a path of destruction and taking many lives.

What we saw on the news footage was like a scene from a Movie- but unfortunately it was very real.
I had a Bride who was getting Married out in Roma- and had contacted her prior to the Toowoomba floods to see if she needed to cancel or suspend her order- as many roads out her way meant that Roma itself was potentially cut off.
The bride persevered and managed to have her Dream wedding- Flying in many guests to be there on the Special day.
A three tier Chocolate creation- with whimsical purple marbling through the chocolate was sent out by air (with the town Pharmacist)- to the wedding in Roma. 
A big cake on a Dash-8 made the journey relatively unscathed.

I was delighted to be able to send the cake out amidst all the upheaval.

Back in Brisbane- we ourselves were bracing for our city to flood.
Within a day of the Darling Downs devastation- Ipswich and Brisbane were also consumed by the rising waters. It all seemed so very surreal to me. I felt very guilty that although living less than 6km CBD-  we had no visual evidence of the chaos and destruction that was happening only minutes down the road.
With people loosing their homes and everything inside of them, entire suburbs flattened by the destruction- businesses ruined and livelihoods lost- what came of this tragedy was spirituous and inspiring.

As the flooding was happening- I was madly contacting my couples for that weekend to see how they were fairing and checking to see what they needed in regards to suspending or cancelling their orders.

A few weddings were placed on hold as their venues went under water. Some were lucky enough to be able to be moved to alternate venues. Such huge feats given the circumstances.

Once such couple were meant to hold their wedding reception at the Marriott- in Brisbane. With Water Damage to the basement, and no power throughout the CBD- the couple were lucky to secure the Gold Coast Marriott withing 2 days of their Wedding.

Their Stunning 3 extended tier cake with Sugar Phalaenopsis orchids trailing over the design was completed and taken down the Coast to the new reception venue.

The base two tiers were pale pink with damask icing stencilling over the tiers.

The next cake had me worried- as many flower farms had been destroyed and interstate trucks were not able to get through- but my flower wholesaler came through with some gorgeous blooms to complete this cake.

To put a cake like this together takes around 1.5hours at the venue. I was under the pump with the Groom and his family already waiting at the venue when I arrived to set up. Having someone watch me work is a little unnerving- despite my usual extroverted personality- having someone- or allot of people- watching over your shoulder is not as easy as working in your own bubble ;-P   

The base tier was topped with a full layer of flowers in pinks and purples- the middle tier with greens and then the top with reds and deep pinks. A cute cartoon topper family- complete with the couples Shitzu dog sat on top.  I had to take the picture shooting into the light (hahah- that sentence made me sound like I had some professional Photog lingo going on) so unfortunately my little pentax couldn't quite capture the cake in its true glory.

With fabulous Anne Campbell performing the ceremony - a glorious day and a gorgeous cake- Lisa and Ben were off to a cracking start to their marriage!

It seemed that one week flowed into the next in January. Our city was amidst of a natural disaster. Many of my suppliers had been impacted- not to mention friends and colleagues effected by the waters too.

A bright light during the floods was my Husbands Birthday!
I was flat chat running around organising new suppliers and reshuffling cake deliveries for those clients of mine who had to suddenly move venues.
Making my gorgeous husbands cake was certainly not a priority at that stage. My sister Kate took on the task with both hands- and with less than 3 hours from wo to go- she had created nothing short of a masterpiece!

To Bring a little bit of background into this story- My husband has a liking for powered model "toys"- currently he is liking Helicopters. Kate's quick wit had her brain and cake designing abilities working overtime. A google image search had inspired the cake design:  

Kate could see all the components of the cake in the simplistic shapes of the stock image......
So she set off to Coles (whilst imagination and design may be her forte- baking unfortunately is not).
She loaded up her basket with all the essentials- cakes- biscuits- wafers- Betty Crocker frosting- food colouring.......and passion!

What eventuated was certainly MAGIC!
Kate's ingenuity had her cover a platter in foil- creating a lovely silver background, she even hand cut out the wafer propeller blades!

Awesome MUCH!!!!!!!!
Kate is proudly telling whoever will listen how great she is at round cakes- that she is! A magnificent job indeed- proving if you have the will and determination anyone can be fabulous at this cake decorating game!

Our four year old niece Scarlett was in awe of Kate's Talents- all she wanted was a piece of the tail with the Jaffa! I LOVE how much kids enjoy cakes- such an exciting time for them.

Kate and Scarlett pose proudly with the Helicopter Masterpiece.

It was time then for the candles to be lit and the cake to be revealed to the birthday boy!
I don't think we have seen a smile this big on his face since his 8th Birthday! Congratulations Steve!

To say he was mighty impressed is an understatement.Thanks to Kate for taking on the cake duty and exceeding everyone's expectations! You rock!

The weekend following Steve's birthday I had a very cool cake indeed!
The cake was for a couples joint birthday- an 18" replica of a shipping container- complete with  logos representing meaningful places and interests of the couple.

Cool hey! This cake was far too big for my photo tent- so no pretty picture to show sorry.

I had a lovely local Alderley couples wedding that weekend too.
Held at Brett's Wharf- which was unscathed in the flood disaster- a funky little bridal couple sat tall on top of a simple- yet fun- wedding cake.

This cake had a slight design change- due to one of my suppliers not being able to supply edible image for the cake- but in the end the cake looked cute as!

The Red and purple roses together looked fantastic! So bold and awesome up against the black and white.

The next GIANT cake was originally scheduled for The Stamford Plaza- my old work- which is STILL unfortunately out of action.

A quick move to the Hyatt Sanctuary Cove- saw this grand beauty set up in style!

Three tier double height design- this cake had a wide top tier- which added to the cakes size look in real life.

I was able to use one of my gorgeous new stencils on this cake and finish the stencelling with some piped icing pearls- so pretty!
Roses and lissianthus fulled between the tiers- bold and soft colours blended together- just gorgeous!

This cake was for such a beautiful bride- I am so glad that in the end all worked out for her. In the midst of all the flood tragedy- she was calm and confident - and knew that all that mattered was that she and her husband were to be married, and no matter how big or small the celebration- what mattered was their love. Months of planning every last detail were shadowed by honest reality of what the meaning of a wedding is all about.
So very lovely- I wish Cleonie and Bruce a magnificent life together.

The last shining star of January was a Birthday cake for  a long time family friend.
A pink themed 60th Birthday party cupcake tower.

Varied Pink icings- with a Happy birthday message discs - and a personalised topper- of course!

Happy Birthday Helen!
I hope that you had a great one.

Well that was January's wrap!
I did miss a couple of fabulous cakes- but I don't have some images. When I manage to get some I will certainly share them with you all!

I hope you had a comfy seat!
Thanks for reading

P.S.- A Very Special mention to My friends Deb and Lanson in Esk- they have been hit so many times in this recent month- and still managed to help others in need too.
My sister Kate and her friends- who also help clear homes and businesses in around their inner city homes- as well as kindly passing out cakes and biscuits as I was too shy to do so.... My sympathies to Julie Whitehead- of Julie Whitehead cakes - who had her own home devastated by the floods- but still managed to create her magnificent creations with a smile!
And to the Mud army- who dropped whatever they had going on to selflessly lend a hand to all those in need. The human spirit is amazing- it certainly makes you proud to be a Queenslander in these trying times.

To donate to the QLD Premiers Flood appeal Click Here!

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