Growing up I have always loved the arts... and coincidentally -SWEETS! I was, and always will be a girlie girl (yes, even as a #boymom) and I have always loved all things homemaking. In fact, I wanted to grow up and be a mom. I was obsessed with sewing, crafting, photography, cooking, and of course - baking. I come from a giant Italian family, and even when you're not technically family, we still act like you are. I grew up side by side with my mom in the kitchen. As the oldest of nine children (8 girls, 1 boy) I was the mommy-in-training and we made FOOD. Lots and lots of food. My grandmother takes it as a personal insult when you don't eat her cooking. To my grandmother, food was love, and treats were a gift. As I begun baking I understood what she meant, because there is nothing that is so satisfying than feeding hungry little bellies or having people enjoy your gift to them. When I was 15 I met my first fondant cake. We were both guests at my cousin's wedding and I think we fell in love. I couldn't get over the smooth lines, the soft texture, and the beautiful polished finish. It was the most beautiful cake I had ever seen. Looking back, it was probably a very simple design, but to my 15-year-old heart, something about it made me so happy. Ironically, 5 years later when my husband and I got married (yes 20!) we ended up with a buttercream cake, and my love for fondant intensified! Four years later I was binge watching "Cake Boss" before binge-watching was popular. I was obsessed. I admit I was new to cable so I was really excited to have T.V period, but this was the coolest show, (in my opinion). By late 2009 I found myself getting annoyed with myself each time I watched. I felt as if there was some sort of untapped talent I was missing out on. I wanted to make these cakes so bad. I remember pacing in my kitchen one day while watching the show. I knew I could do it! I started researching online. Watching tutorials on youtube. I became obsessed but still hadn't made a single cake. A friend of mine told me about a local cake class offered at the college. It was a basic 4-week class. I jumped at the chance but I lived in the craftiest place in the world. Provo, Utah. The waiting list was as long as my arm. It wasn't until 2 days before the class started I got a phone call. They had a spot for me! I scraped up the 25$ to start (hey-we were starving college students!) and eagerly went to class! I didn't learn much more than I already knew from youtube, and thanks to the crazy flu that year, I missed one of my precious classes. But the biggest thing this class gave me was a reason to start purchasing cake supplies. Cause really, when is it a good time to tell your husband you are going to take up an expensive hobby! I caught the cake bug and caught it BAD. I made cakes for everyone and every occasion. I wanted to do it all the time. When I was done, I wanted to start again. I wanted to learn techniques, then try them. I soaked it up like a sponge. I probably made around 50-60 cakes while I experimented with recipes, designs, and "mastered" my art. I love making cakes. Sugar Pearl Bakery was born in 2014. We had recently moved to Southern California and I was the NEW GIRL. I spent over half the year trying to establish my business, it was a lonely and scary road trying to take this hobby and become a legitimate business. In January of 2015 the world (or the greater Conejo Valley) caught on to me and literally OVERNIGHT our business was in full swing. I have met amazing women a long the way who have helped me, guided me and supported me. Women who like me, are also navigating their own journeys. I've created cake friendships that I never knew I could have. Competition that supports, uplifts, and encourages me to increase my skills all the time. Learning to be a businesswoman, a mother, and a wife is a crazy balance, and I feel like I am constantly learning how to be better. My husband is the silent other half of Sugar Pearl Bakery, the work he does is irreplaceable. My family is amazing and so helpful. We couldn't do all this without them.