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Hospital Dis-Appointment


I know I know it’s been a while, two months to be exact, and for that I apologise but the positivity of that last post didn’t last, and I didn’t want to lower the mood!

So I’ve left it a while, but now feel able to catch you up on what’s been happening.

If you’ve been following for a while, you know that I have a spinal cord stimulator that helps mask the pain caused by OPLL. The spinal cord stimulator was fitted in 2014 and the battery powered leads were placed according to where my pain was worse at the time.

Recently however, the pain has spread, most embarrassingly to my buttocks. Any pressure in that area has become unbearable, meaning that I can’t sit down for any length of time. Because of pain in my legs, I also can’t stand or walk for long either! A no win situation 😔

I had hoped that the device could be reprogrammed to cover the new areas, but my neuro appointment turned out to be a dis-appointment! They tried their very best, but it wasn’t to be. So I’ve been left having a review of my pain meds instead, which has so far been unsuccessful.

And I’m spending more time in bed lying flat or on my side, which isn’t ideal from a social perspective! Although I am usually joined by the dog so I do have some company 😆

Then about 6 weeks ago, I started getting very acute pain in my neck whenever I tried to turn it from side to side. I’ve been referred to MSK as I’ve had trouble with a disc in that area in the past, but because of Covid, NHS appointments have long waiting lists at the moment.

I won’t lie, it’s really been getting me down, and I haven’t felt like doing much at all.

Then, my daughter’s hen party plans began which lifted my spirits a lot. We also had a ‘zoom’ wedding fitting session which was exciting, and I began to feel better, emotionally at least!

My family keep reminding me how strong I am, even when I don’t always feel it. Surprise visits from my niece and nephew, followed by my brother and sister in law helped enormously too. And I couldn’t do anything without my lovely hubby who bears the brunt of my ups and downs on a daily basis 💗

My Sugar and Crumbs family have kept me distracted with Facebook lives and classes, and a few cake requests have got me up off my backside and actually putting some of my cakey skills into practice. And of course, recent events in Afghanistan have reminded me that there are a lot of people going through much worse.

So, I have lots to think about, to look forward to, and to be grateful for, and I’m now in the right frame of mind to appreciate that.

I’ll end by showing you some photos of cake, because it wouldn’t be a Baking for Therapy post without them would it? And if my friends didn’t keep trusting me with their requests, I wouldn’t have the therapeutic value that creating them gives me!

And here are my lovely family 💗

Until next time

Stay safe and healthy

Debbie 💗

Baby Cakes, Baking for Therapy, Birthday, Cake decorating, Cake decorating products, Cakes, Bakes, and Me, Celebration, Friends, Health, Recipes, Therapy

A Very Special Birthday Cake 🌈🌈

I’d like to begin this post by saying a big thank you to Viki Shaw and her partner for allowing me to share their story today.

I met Viki as she was part of my children’s group of friends, we are a generation apart, but hers is a story that sadly resonates with parents of any age.

I will let Viki tell you in her own words of the journey to becoming Mummy to her two beautiful girls. It’s a narrative of great loss and grief, but also immense joy and happiness, and is testament to the resilience and strength of the human psyche.

Summer Violet and Isabella Rose just had their first birthday and I was lucky enough to make it!

The two cakes were chocolate and vanilla, both baked in PME 6” round x 3” tall baking tins, using PME baking belts. to ensure even baking.

See recipe page The vanilla cake was filled and coated with buttercream, for the chocolate I used ganache.

Both cakes were then covered in Select Ireland platinum sugarpaste coloured with Coloursplash pink.

I made the rainbow by adding Rainbow dust tylo powder to the sugarpaste and used Coloursplash in purple, pink, blue, pistachio and sunflower yellow to make some pretty pastels. These were rolled into long sausages and attached with PME piping gel to a cake board cut to size.

I used Cake Star Mini letters and Numbers , and FMM cloud shaped and heart shaped cutters from this set for decoration. The cakes are on a sugarpaste covered rectangle drum board 14”x10”

I’m not going to say any more, I’ll just leave you with the picture ⛈🌧🌦🌈🌈

Until next time

Stay safe and healthy

Debbie ❤️

Baby Cakes, Baking for Therapy, Cake decorating, Cake decorating products, Cakes, Bakes, and Me, Celebration, Family, Fun, Health, Love, Therapy

Surprise baby shower!

Hi everyone,

I can’t tell you how delighted I was to be making this cake! It was for my niece, Amy and her partner Robb (who was in on the surprise) and it wasn’t a cake I expected to be making as Amy wasn’t supposed to be able to conceive! Needless to say she was absolutely gobsmacked at first, but fully embraced this miraculous chance to become a Mummy 👶

We knew the baby was a boy, and even his name, which gave me a head start on design. Then all the disposable tableware arrived and was elephant themed! So I decided to make a fault line cake with elephants, textured buttercream, and a large initial ‘Z’ for Zachary 😀

I’m delighted to say that baby Zachary James Ray arrived safe and sound on Sunday 8th March 2020 😍

Here he is with his beautiful Mummy 💕

Gorgeous baby Zac with my lovely niece Amy
Proud Daddy

And you know what that means? I’m a Great-Aunty! Correction, I’m going to be an Awesome Great-Aunty! 😆 Can’t wait for cuddles 😘

Until next time

Stay safe and healthy

Debbie ❤️

Baby Cakes, Baking for Therapy, Birthday, Cake decorating, Cake decorating products, Cakes, Bakes, and Me, Celebration, Fun, Therapy

Jungle themed 1st Birthday Cake!

Hi everyone,

A year ago, I was honoured to make a welcome cake for baby Ralph who surprised his parents by arriving early! (See below)

So I was delighted to be asked to make his first birthday cake too. It was a large 12” round sponge cake, (see Vanilla Cake recipe) but the fun part was the jungle theme, which meant I could play with sugar figures!

Unfortunately, all the natural light had gone by the time I got round to taking photos, so apologies for the poor quality. Anyway the idea was to have the animals having a picnic party. Ralph’s mum Amy had requested a monkey holding a banana, and I added the elephant and the giraffe. They are sitting on a blue blanket with a cake, in the shade of a palm tree. I added some colourful bunting round the sides to add to the party vibe, and a polka dot ribbon finished it off.

Here’s the feedback I received from Amy:

Hi Debbie, I’ve just sat down, what a day. Absolutely brilliant cake so many people have loved it there’s hardly any left!!! Thank you so much xx

She also sent me some photos:

Until next time

Stay safe and healthy

Debbie ❤️

From Sugar and Crumbs:

Select Ireland Silk Edition white sugarpaste

Renshaw pre coloured sugarpaste red and orange

Renshaw chocolate flavour sugarpaste

Wilton gel food colours blue, leaf green and lemon yellow (from a set of 8)

Baby Cakes, Birthday, Cake decorating, Cakes, Bakes, and Me, Celebration, Craft Fair, Family, Halloween, Health

Where have I been?

Hello lovelies,

Apologies for the absence of posts this last 2 months, it’s been a very difficult time.

Last time I told you about my mother in law being ill. Since then, she’s been back in hospital, and then a local Community rehabilitation hospital, before we finally got her home last Friday.

After countless tests which revealed some minor concerns, but nothing which explained the severity of her symptoms, she gradually started to improve after they began feeding her through a nasal tube. She’s now eating and drinking small amounts on her own, and although she’s still very weak physically, she’s now ‘back with us’ in that she’s mentally aware again. I’ve never been so glad to hear her start complaining!

She can’t actually remember most of the past two months, so had no idea how worried we’ve all been. Of course she’s misbehaving already. Tiring herself out by trying to get herself washed and dressed before the carer arrives to help her, but she’s 85 and has always been fiercely independent, so it’s going to take time to adjust. I know from personal experience how difficult it is to accept that you need help with things you used to take for granted. It’s not easy, but she’ll get there. As you can imagine, my husband and his sister are keeping a close eye on her, and she’s being monitored by Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy for her mobility issues.

As for me, earlier in the year I applied to exhibit at a local Craft Fair which takes place over 9 days. At the time it was to be a joint venture with my friend, but her circumstances changed in the meantime, so she wasn’t able to help as much as she’d originally planned to. As the arrangement was to take our goodies, set up the table and then leave it to be stewarded by the organisers, I decided to go ahead anyway, with the help of my Mum instead. Luckily most of my items were non perishable, so I was able to get them ready in my own time, but 2 weeks before we were due to deliver them, I pulled a muscle in my lower back, so still ended up behind preparation wise! In the end, Mum came to finish the packaging and labelling for me, and Hubby took time out from hospital visiting to do the lifting and carrying to the venue.

However, over the two weeks, I ended up sleeping in my specialist reclining chair as it was too painful to get in and out of bed. I was just beginning to worry that it might be a worsening of my OPLL, when it finally began to improve…..phew!

So….baking wise, I did manage to make a cake for Halloween 👻 A vampire hedgehog of all things….

A two headed unicorn cake for my friend’s twin nieces…..

And a cute elephant themed baptism cake and cupcakes for one of my daughter’s best friends….well, for her son William, who is absolutely gorgeous 💕

As you can see, she displayed it beautifully in pride of place at the venue after the Church ceremony.

I will hopefully be able to get back to posting a bit more regularly now, but belated Happy Halloween, Thanksgiving and any other events I may have missed!

Until next time

Stay safe and healthy

Debbie ❤️