The Cake Mistake
September 2023

“The Cake Mistake,” Friend, September 2023, 10–11.

The Cake Mistake

Shiloh wanted her cake to look perfect.

This story took place in Scotland.

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Shiloh finished coloring her drawing and put her crayon down on her desk. “There!”

“What’s that?” her friend Lacey asked.

“It’s the cake I’m making for the school contest.” Shiloh held up the picture for Lacey to see.

“It looks really cool!” Lacey said.

“Thanks!” Shiloh grinned. Her cake was going to be perfect. She had it all planned out. The cake would have four layers. Two layers would be blue, and two would be red—the same colors as the flag for the United Kingdom. She’d put white frosting between each layer. Finally, she would put her best homemade cookies on top! She was sure she’d get first place.

“What are you going to bake?” Shiloh asked.

“I’m not sure yet,” Lacey said. “Maybe a cake too.”

“I can’t wait to see what you make,” Shiloh said.

As soon as she got home, Shiloh was ready to start baking. She put her cake drawing on the counter so she could look at it while she worked.

Shiloh carefully measured all the ingredients. She mixed them up and poured the batter into the cake pan. Then she put the pan in the oven to bake the first cake layer.

When the timer went off, Shiloh took the cake out of the oven. She tried to take the cake out of the pan. But when she flipped it over, half of the cake was stuck to the bottom!

“Oh no!” Shiloh cried. She showed the broken cake to Mum. “My cake is ruined!”

Mum patted Shiloh’s back. “It’s OK. We can fix it.”

Mum helped Shiloh take out the rest of the cake. They carefully pushed the broken pieces together.

“There,” Mum said. “You can’t even tell it broke.”

Shiloh felt a little better. She could still make the rest of the cake look perfect. She started making the next layer. This time, Shiloh let the cake cool before taking it out of the pan. It didn’t break!

When all the layers of cake were done, Shiloh stacked them. She put frosting between each layer. Then she carefully placed a few homemade cookies on the top of the cake. Done!

But Shiloh frowned. The cake didn’t look anything like her drawing. The frosting was dripping off, the layers were crooked, and the whole cake leaned to one side. What a mess! Shiloh started to cry.

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“What’s wrong?” Mum asked.

“I wanted the cake to look perfect! Now it’s all gone wrong!” Shiloh wiped a tear from her face.

Mum gave Shiloh a hug. “I think your cake looks pretty. And I bet it will taste even better!”

Shiloh shook her head. “I should just throw it away. I’m going to get last place now!”

“Would it help if I said a prayer?” Mum asked.

Shiloh nodded.

“Dear Heavenly Father,” Mum said, “I’m so grateful for Shiloh and for all her hard work to make this cake. Please help her feel happy with what she has been able to do. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.”

Shiloh felt calmer. She looked at her cake again. Maybe it didn’t look just like her drawing, but it still looked OK. And she’d had fun making it.

The next day at school, Shiloh looked around at all the other desserts kids had made. She didn’t think she would get a prize. The other cakes looked amazing.

But when the winners were announced, Shiloh got second place! And Lacey got first place!

Lacey ran to Shiloh and gave her a hug. “We both won!”

Shiloh smiled. Even if she hadn’t won, she would be glad she had kept trying.

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Illustrations by Maryssa Dennis