If at first you don’t succeed…

Friends who have been here from the beginning may remember the ill-fated Earl Grey Tea Cupcakes. It’s hard to believe that was almost two years ago, or that I waited this long to attempt making them again.

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As you can see, this time all went just as it should have. Even the glaze-instead-of-icing switch, which of course was a no-brainer because anyone can mix powdered sugar and lemon juice together.

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Two years ago, baking was on the list of things that I’d only do if I had to, with a few exceptions including things that actually turned out consistently well. But even then I can’t say that I actually enjoyed or looked forward to the process.

Now here I am actually enjoying my time with the measuring cups. What brought about the change? Most likely it’s due to a combination of things like gaining an understanding of the science behind the baking process, acquiring/using helpful tools, and changing my viewpoint when it comes to baking. Instead of saying “I WILL conquer this yet!” and viewing the process as “me vs. it” it was much more helpful to ask “how can I understand this and make it work?” And I’m sure learning to have fun with it and laugh at myself instead of dreading the task and getting mad at myself when things turned out to be flops that I wanted to bury in the backyard helped too.

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And the bigger lesson is, of course, persevering. The admonishment to Keep Moving Forward. I was reminded of this principle in what may seem like an unlikely place this week – at work with the kids. While assisting seven-year-old Logan with building a popsicle-stick house (I had glue-gun duty) we were a bit stumped as to how to design the roof. Rather, I was stumped as to how to how to build what he was describing. And then when we did figure it out, I was also the one doing the majority of the construction. I should be able to handle making a pyramid shape out of craft sticks and hot glue, right? Halfway through I could see that it wasn’t going to work as well as I thought it would, and the final product, to my eyes, was a crudely constructed pyramid that didn’t match up on the ends, didn’t sit flush on the “ceiling” and was definitely not my best work. But Logan proclaimed it “perfect,” the declaration accompanied by his cute toothless grin. But what made me think was eleven-year-old Claye’s comment, who had been making his own craft beside us. “See Miss Lindsey?” he said “you said it wasn’t going to work but he thinks it’s perfect. Aren’t you glad you kept moving forward?” 

Yes, Claye, I am glad I kept at it, both with craft-stick construction and baking. Thanks for inspiring me to revisit the failed attempt at cupcakes that had a part in the start of this journey with flour, sugar, eggs, oil, leavening, and 350* ovens.

Now… perhaps I should turn my attention to understanding more about candy-making, as my second attempt at spun sugar wound up the same way as my first (also yeeeears ago). Some hard candy, anyone?

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1 Comment

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One response to “If at first you don’t succeed…

  1. Nicole

    Sniff, sniff. How sweet. We’re all proud of you! 🙂

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