Thursday, June 23, 2011

Father's Day Cake

Father’s Day Cake
Dorcas Annette Walker

This Father’s Day our family will be especially grateful to have my husband, Dana, with us. Little did we realize over three months ago how fragile my husband’s hold on life was until he had a slight heart attack, which led to the finding out that the major arteries of his heart were blocked culminating in a 4 by-pass open heart surgery the first of April. The days before Dana’s heart surgery I was mostly concerned that he would make it into surgery before a major cardiac arrest happened as his vitals kept swinging wildly. I figured that once Dana had his heart surgery he would quickly bounce back on his feet like his usual self as my husband has always been healthy with a strong constitution. Unknown to me our life had already drastically changed. Instead of getting off the respirator within a couple of hours after heart surgery, Dana ended up having to stay on the respirator for over twelve hours when his body exhibited high levels of carbon dioxide. The next morning the left side of Dana’s face drooped. I knew this was a sign of a stroke, but when he started moving his hands and legs we became more concerned with the function of his left lung as the lower lobe had collapsed that turned into pneumonia and a buildup of fluid. After a couple of weeks in the hospital all I wanted to do was bring my husband back home and nurse Dana back to health confident that he would soon regain his strength. Meeting other fellows, who had gone through open heart surgery and recovered quickly only strengthened my resolve that Dana could rebound as well. Instead the last two months for us have been filled with continual complications with Dana’s breathing, more evidence with the passing of time the side effects of Dana’s neurological stroke, his sugar that persists in swinging despite taking four insulin shots a day all slowing down his recovery process. Our life now revolves around making sure that Dana gets his meds at the proper time, insulin shots, using his inhaler every four hours, between frequent doctor and ER visits. The last thing I am doing is complaining as I am so very grateful to have Dana still with me. The sad fact of life is that without trying or even meaning too in the daily race of life we take our loved ones for granted until an emergency strikes whether it be a serious car accident, tornado disaster, or a sudden heart attack. Suddenly our priorities change and we focus on what really is the most important to us. For our family having my husband, father, and grandfather with us will be a precious gift this Father’s Day. So on this Father’s Day don’t forget to honor the special father in your life that you still are privileged to have.

I saw this idea for a Father’s Day Cake in a magazine and was instantly captivated by its simplicity. The decoration of the Father’s Day Cake is easy enough that your children or grandchildren can help. Since Dana is on a strict diabetic diet I used a sugar free cake mix and frosting, but any cake mix or favorite brownie recipe could be utilized. Construct whichever shirt pattern you desire first with a toothpick and then decorate with different colored icing using frosting gels, small candies, chocolate chips, or sprinkles to help embellish your Father’s Day Cake. Preparation time varies depending on the how elaborately you craft your cake. This recipe makes one special 9 x 13 Father’s Day Cake.

Father’s Day Cake

1 cake or brownie mix- your choice
1 (15 oz) container of frosting- your choice
decorative candies

Prepare the cake mix as directed baking it in a 9 x 13 baking dish. Let cool, frost, and then decorate. Garnish by placing your decorated cake into a gift box with tissue paper!

Weekly tip: Use a baggie for small decorating jobs with frosting as it is quick, easy to handle, and can be discarded afterwards!

Dorcas Annette Walker is a published author, columnist, speaker, freelance magazine writer, and photographer from Jamestown, Tennessee. Contact her at: For more recipes check out her Creative Tennessee Mountain Cookin blog at:

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