About Bake Therapy
Claire is a speech and language therapist who lives with her husband Carl and her beloved pooch Trevor. Trevor is a large bull mastiff cross with large droopy jowls, a tail that wags like a helicopter and a natty sense of style!
Claire and Carl met in 2009 through mutual friends. They both list their one regret in life as not having met sooner. Carl, an employee at a large pharmaceutical firm, likes to brew beer and attempt to breakdance at the end of parties when he has drank too much. Claire generally encourages him.
Carl is also a lover of childish toilet humour and ‘pull my finger jokes’. Again, these behaviours are generally encouraged by Claire. Claire and Carl do most things together. They have tried to do ‘girlz’ and ‘boyz’ stuff, but tend to come to the conclusion that they enjoy things much more when they do them together. The twee nature of this realisation can often lead to self-induced nausea.
This, however, is generally overcome by cooking a meal whilst listening to the Craig Charles Funk and Soul Show, all the while drinking home-made wine and then dancing into the night to Elbow, Queen, Sigur Ros, Blur, The Cure and a touch of Hans Zimmer. Often these nights are joined by friends and the mix of music sometimes moves into the heady territory of Michael Bolton. How can we be lovers if we can’t be friends? Indeed Michael, indeed. There are generally a lot of raise fist-grab air – pull downwards movements happening at this point by all involved.
Claire qualified as a speech and language therapist in 2005 in Manchester. Due to the dearth of jobs in the health service for newly qualified practitioners at the time, Claire moved to Lincolnshire for her first post in order to work with the client group she felt she had the most affinity with. Since this first job, Claire has worked in both public and private healthcare settings working with people with learning disabilities and people with autism.
Claire had always struggled with her mental health, but it was in 2011 that it took it’s toll and she had to leave work for a while. The support from Carl throughout a fairly significant period of time has meant that she has now returned to work within the NHS part time, leaving her lots of other time to follow her hobbies and look after Trevor.
Claire has honed her skills in baking and cake decorating over the last few years. Always encouraged to bake in her childhood, Claire resurrected her baking skills to help focus herself when she became poorly and was unable to leave the house or speak to her friends. From putting together quiches for tea and the odd lemon drizzle loaf, she moved onto more ambitious projects, her focus improving her health.
Claire has made many wedding and celebration cakes for her friends and family to date, her abilities getting better each time she tries a new technique. There have however, been some disasters. Her first sugarpaste bride was described by her mum as a ‘zombie drag queen’. Carl has also made passing comments about her sugarpaste ‘fairy prostitutes’ when she was desperately aiming for A Midsummer Night’s Dream as opposed to a Band of Gold themed christening cake.
But in general, the skills have improved, even if her timekeeping hasn’t. Carl continues to tease her about a ‘quick cake’ taking her many more than the anticipated hours and evolving.