My Other Blog

What's a Wreck?

A Cake Wreck is any cake that is unintentionally sad, silly, creepy, inappropriate - you name it. A Wreck is not necessarily a poorly-made cake; it's simply one I find funny, for any of a number of reasons. Anyone who has ever smeared frosting on a baked good has made a Wreck at one time or another, so I'm not here to vilify decorators: Cake Wrecks is just about finding the funny in unexpected, sugar-filled places.

Now, don't you have a photo you want to send me? ;)

- Jen

Sunday Sweets For My Dad

We all know dads' tastes are just as diverse as, well, non-dads, so when it came time to choose today's Sweets I decided to hone in on one specific dad: mine.

So, here 'tis: Father's Day Sweets for my dad, Jim Yates. But the rest of you can feel free to look, too. :)

Hey, Dad, remember that time the neighbor's little boy snuck in to our house, grabbed your guitar, and dragged it down the sidewalk? Ah, good times.

Also, I don't think your guitar looked quite this cool:

Submitted by Kathy H. and made by her sister, Carol V.

And remember how you'd take me for rides on your motorcycle? The turns always scared me, but I loved having my very own kid-sized helmet, and the thrill of climbing into the seat behind you, hanging on for dear life, and thinking maybe my parents weren't quite so embarrassing, after all.

Although, come to think of it, your motorcycle wasn't this cool, either:

Submitted by Tifany D., made by Charm City Cakes

It's possible you've blocked this from memory, but you really did teach me to drive. In our ancient green Toyota pickup, no less, with a floor stick shift.

By CakeDesigns

Our truck was DEFINITELY not this cool.

It took me years to figure out what you did for a living. All I knew was you worked at a big, intimidating office/factory and you wore a suit every day. (Btw, you're, uh, some kind of project manager/engineer type, right?) I still remember the first time you asked me if your tie went with your shirt; it made me feel so important, that you'd ask for my opinion. Actually, I still feel that way, any time you ask.

And for the record: that tie + that shirt = perfect.

Remember when I came home crying because all the kids were making flashy, expensive models for a school project, and I didn't have anything flashy OR expensive? You sat me down and asked me what I'd like to do. Then we went to Skycraft Surplus (remember that?). In the end, I couldn't have been more proud: my project board's little Styrofoam car had real working headlights!

To this day, I clearly remember "The Sociological Impact of the Lightbulb" - because my Dad helped me build it.

Remember Starbuck and Midnight, our pet miniature goats? We must have been the only family in an Orlando subdivision with two goats bleating in the backyard. I still can't believe you bought them for us. Heh.

Submitted by Amelia B. and made by Kick Ass Kakes

(Bet you were expecting a goat cake, huh?)

You were forever doing home projects, and I loved weekends when you'd ask, "Shorty, want to go to the Home o' de Pot?"

By justcakinmytime

We'd pile into our old green pickup, and you'd sing "Greasy Grimey Gopher Guts" and "On Top of Old Smokey" along the way. Thanks to you I still love the smell of sawdust and grease that hits me every time I walk into our local Home Depot - and today I rock my own tool belt.

One night I peeked into the living room to see what you and Mom were laughing about, and there on the TV was a curly-headed man in a long scarf bouncing into a blue police box.

Soon we were all watching together, just like we watched Star Trek and Night Court and Monty Python together. The next year you brought us to my very first convention - a Doctor Who convention.

(I like to think my geeky lineage came full circle when John and I brought you and Mom to Dragon*Con last year - thus starting a yearly tradition, perhaps?)

When we were little, you seemed to take sadistic glee in waking Ben and me with loud jazz music, water, or banging suddenly on our bedroom doors - but I'll never forget the time you woke us with "Who wants to go to Disney World?!"

Sub'd by Stacey R., made by nice icing

You never set limits on my future, Dad. When I wrote lousy poetry, you submitted your favorite to a national magazine - and you were more disappointed than I was when it wasn't printed. When I thought I wanted to be a professional clown, you got brochures for Ringling College. When I first introduced you to John, you asked if we'd set a date yet.

You taught me to pursue my dreams, marry only for love, and to always finish my Brussels sprouts.

Hey, two out of three ain't bad, right?

So thanks, Dad. Happy Father's Day.

(Oh, and see you at Dragon*Con.)

Happy Father's Day to the rest of you dads out there, too! May all your children grow up to make you proud - when they're not publicly embarrassing you on the Internet, of course.

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Reader Comments (141)

I'm with Sharyn - by the time I'd gotten to the bottom of the post, I was barely looking at the cakes, because I was so entranced by your tribute to your Dad! Thanks for the smiles and for bringing up memories for me, too. :-)

Lori on the upper left coast

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I have tears streaming down my face! What a wonderful relationship you two have, and you are both so very lucky! I can say this as a daughter, mother, and grandmother who would love to know that my children and grandchildren may have memories like this.

The Sunday Sweets are pretty amazing, too!

wv: achingu - As in that sunburn you got yesterday looks painful, is it achingu?

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDawn de Mom

Hmm... maybe I'm a emotionless Vulcanesque creature, but I kinda prefer when you're being totally snarky. When you're channeling your "She who makes monitors covered with snorted coffee and destroyer of Slartiblarfasts" side. But it WAS sweet. Guess I just prefer sassy.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

That was the most amazing post ever. It made me cry.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLena Goodwin

I was definitely teary toward the end too. Great post!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMeghan

You made me cry. Thank you.


June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMadTigerKitty

wow, totally teared up. You have a great dad, and he has a great daughter.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPinky

Cracking post! I watched Star Trek with my Dad too but I am impressed that you watched Doctor Who too :-) My Dad is watching the latest Doctor Who with my nephew as I type...


June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSarah King

there..eyes dried...what a beautiful blog today. brought back memories from so many years ago; those I'll never lose. thank you. and I loved the label in the shirt and tie cake.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commentermel

Aww, Jen, how wonderful! You sure have a cool Dad! Happy Father's Day to him and all dads. :-)

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterfurpurrson

Thanks for sharing such wonder-full memories of your Dad. It made me weapy. In a good way.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJessica

This is just lovely. Makes me miss my Dad even more.

I, for one, hope to see your dad at Dragon*Con, too!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBarilla

Awwwwwwwwwww :D That was wonderful.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAaron Sebright

So nice! Your dad sounds as awesome as my dad. We are currently having a cake worthy experience, despite his bad back and knees he is helping me move into my first apartment... Up all three flights of stairs! I can totally see you and your dad doing the same thing! Have a fantastic fathers day!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSami

super sweet post (pun totally intended)!

Query though: if your dad is Jim Yates then (a) both you and John just happened to have the last name Yates? or (b) John changed his last name to Yates when you got married?

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I, too, have those kinds of memories with my daddy and am lucky enough to still have him with me. Besides being Father's Day, today is my birthday--I love it when the two coincide; it's always a special day for my daddy and me. I was born on Father's Day as well. Since I'm the eldest, it was "Happy Father's Day! You're a father!" I think I really WANT that TARDIS cake for my birthday...

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSaraCVT

I got choked up reading that. Your dad sounds AMAZING!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterChristina

I was all teary reading this, you really gave dad a cool tribute here, good job. It reminded me of my favorite baking blogs tribute to her dad.
for the record, i know it can be tacky to leave links to other blogs on people blogs but i thought this was super sweet. If you want to delete it from your comments i totally get that. your still cool with me.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmber

What a sweet post! I was totally tearing up! Jen's dad, you are one of the coolest dads ever! :)

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJessica W

Beautiful tribute!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRachel

Yeah, thanks for making me get all teary eyed! Blessings to you and your dad, and all the other dads out there, too.

(Miss you, Daddy.)

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterwinsomebulldog

Awww, your dad is so lucky to have a daughter like you!! What a sweet post!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

@ Anony 3:17 - John took my last name when we got married. It was his idea, in fact. He's very progressive that way. :)

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJen

That was the best post and it made me tear up girl! So sweet! Happy Father's Day everyone and tell your Dad he rocks for me. :)

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterApril

I have a similar memory of Doctor Who and Star Trek and Star Wars with my dad! He still says one of his favorite memories was overhearing me doing the TARDIS noises and humming the theme song with my Barbie dolls.

Also, he got into a fight (almost fisticuffs) with my 8th grade science teacher when "Which paper towel absorbs the most" beat my homemade electrolysis experiment AND the nerdy guys Tesla coil! Fun times!

Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there and thanks for the nostalgia!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterApple

It's not a telephone box... Otherwise, good post =)

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterElle

(Now that I've got my eyes dried...)

Best. Post. Ever.

You're lucky to have such a Dad and he's lucky to have such a Shorty!
Happy Father's Day!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPhilip Madruga

Lucky Jen and Ben to have such a great dad, lucky Mom to have a great husband -- and lucky Dad to have two kids who love him as adults. Thanks for letting us all share part of your family.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterjunewilliams7

Suggestion: next time subtitle such a post "Kleenex moment," okay?

Thank you for sharing this with us.

-Barbara Anne

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Happy Father's Day!! And see you ALL at Dragon*Con!!!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterev

Jen, your dad reminds me so much of mine from what you've said. :)

This was such a lovely post!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnna N.

Jenn, I've been reading your blog for some time now & often have had tears from laughing so hard. But the tears today were special - what a wonderful & touching tribute to your Dad :)

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterShari Tombs

Thanks for this, Shorty. It explains a lot- your Dad deserves a medal. ;) He must be one awesome chap.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterlisbonlioness

I totally remember my dad singing, "Greasy Grimey Gopher Guts"! I had forgotten about that gooofy song he sang. Thanks for the memory.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMissy

Geek dads are just the best aren't they?!

What a sweet sunday sweet ^.^

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSam

Awww! Jen, you are such a good daughter. Those cakes are awesome, and your tribute to your dad was beautiful.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMonica

Jen, those are such wonderful memories. My dad died unexpectedly on Friday, and this post brought a smile to my face as I thought about all the memories I had with him. Thanks. :)

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

omfg ... was that an optimus prime cake???? LOVE IT!!!! LOVE THEM ALL!!!!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteramyandtenaya

Terrific post, Jen! You dad sounds a lot like mine. Happy Father's Day to all hands-on dads who are involved in their kids' lives.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMarnie

very nice.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterarchersangel

You made me cry. That is a first for a cakewrecks entry for me. My dad passed away 15 yrs ago and I still remember thinking that the coach had finally put him in centerfield to play. He taught me the team work of sports played fairly and that all people deserve an equal shot no matter what they look like on the outside, it's the inside that counts. Happy Father's day, dad, I hope your having fun!!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAdoAnnie

You must have a very proud daddy :) What a sweet (no pun intended) post.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

A truly amazing post. I laughed. I cried. I reminisced of my own wacky childhood. I admired some awesome cakes as I sniffled. You inspired me to do something I hadn't done before...share with you, how much I enjoy your work. Carry on, Shorty and continue to do your magic, and make your dad proud!!
Thank You!
Elaina Jimenez

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Awww... when you said it took years to learn what your father did, I could totally relate! You must listen to the song "My Father's an Accountant (and I used to think that he was dull)" by Peter Himmelman!! You will tear up, it's so sweet. It's all about thinking your dad is kind of boring and realizing he's such a hero!

"He doesn't wear a cape like Superman,
there are no mountains that he's brave enough to climb,
But if I ever really need him, he'll be there, every time."

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

1. Love your post - such a sweet tribute to your dad!

2. I MUST have that Optimus Prime cake!!!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda Mac


YES, IT IS. Have you NEVER watched "Doctor Who"? It's the British version of a telephone booth from the 1950's, referred to as a "call box". The TARDIS, according to the show, has a Chameleon Circuit to disguise itself as an ordinary object, but it got broken and the TARDIS remains in that shape.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSaraCVT

That was so sweet and brought a tear to my eye remembering all the great times with my dad! The tie + shirt opinion gave me a great idea for my husband and daughter in the future. Thank you so much for this post!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLibbie

jenn - thanks so much for such a wonderful post! been a fan for a long time, laughed myself to tears many a time with your snarky wit (and john's and jenn 2).

today i cried with joy and remembrance - you too were blessed with a wonderful father. what lucky girls are we?!?! i lost mine a little less than two months ago and not a day goes by that i don't miss him. you helped spark many fond memories on a day that was becoming increasingly hard!

thanks jenn! cake on my friend, cake on!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterjoyfullgrrrl

That was such a sweet post to your dad. (No pun intended) :) I bet he feels extremely happy to be your dad.

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterShannon

Seems like your father-daughter relationship with your dad is a lot like the one I have with my Dad.
Thanks for the heart warming post Jen!

June 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMicalah

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