In celebration of Mother’s Day, we asked Wilton employees to share some special memories and stories. For many of us, our moms – or someone who is like a mom to us – piqued our interest in baking. Who did you learn from? What special memories do you have? Or, are you a mom who enjoys baking with her kids? In this series, we will feature a different story each day. We hope you enjoy reading the stories of those who chose to share their MOMent!
People tell me all the time, “You sound just like your mom” and I take that as a huge compliment. Ever since I can remember I have been trying to be just like her. She is the type of woman, who was born to be a mom. Growing up, I was lucky enough to have her at home and not only was she always there for me, but she was so much fun too! She let us build forts all over the house, have food fights in the backyard, and even experiment with new “recipes” in the kitchen. A few years ago I went back to culinary school, but the truth is I learned everything I needed to know about baking long before I could even spell C-H-O-C-O-L-A-T-E.
My mom is the bravest, smartest, most creative woman on the planet. She has this unique ability to make fun out of any situation and I mean any situation. When I was a little girl, my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. Naturally, anyone in this position would be absolutely devastated. Yet, throughout her treatment, she continued to stay the positive and adventurous mom I always knew. This is when I discovered my passion for the kitchen and it all started with bagels, Grapenuts, and instant coffee. There were days when it was hard for Mom to get out of bed. At the tender age of 5, I would make her breakfast of all the things that sounded good to her. However, my talents were limited to a toaster, cereal, and coffee that looked like something you might find in a cheap hotel. She loved it.
As time went on, Mom taught me more and more about cookies and cakes. It was our special time together. She had me take a junior cooking class, where I learned all about easy and safe recipes. She would even let me help with dinner and my favorite… dessert. During these special times together, she made it seem so easy to follow a recipe (or not J). She always emphasized that having fun was the most important part of the process. Though I know her favorite part was making people smile. The birthday cakes she would make were always something special. She built me an eyeball cake (before there was a pan), a Barbie doll cake (before there was a pan) and even a guitar cake for my dad (ok, that one was a Wilton pan). Nothing beat the look on her face when she would present it to you. The joy inside her immediately triggered the recipient and bounced off the walls. I wanted to make that happen and so began my love for making people smile, AKA, baking.
As time has gone on I have refined my skills and have even gotten to teach her a trick or two. Although, no matter how hard I try I will never be able to beat her ice cream cookie sandwiches. My mom is a hero. She has beaten breast cancer, but lives with the aftermath of arthritis. Yet even through it all, she still loves making treats for birthdays, holidays, and her kiddos in Sunday School. I am everything I am because of her. I experiment in the kitchen, continuously try to push myself and never forget the first thing she taught me about baking… to have fun!