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Because of a promise, baking cakes becomes passion

March 27, 2010 -- If you've ever had a piece of cake at a 108th Wing event during the past two years, chances are the cake was made by Tech. Sgt. Crystal ChinQuee-Smith, the 108th Alternate Base Equipment Control officer and Software Benefits administrator.
When people get into cooking or baking, it is usually something they grow up doing, or it is passed down from one generation to the next. Both of ChinQuee-Smith's grandmothers baked cakes in their spare time, but that wasn't exactly what got her involved in cake making. It all began rather innocently and unplanned.
"When my daughter was eight-years old, she asked me to make her wedding cake for her when she got married," said ChinQuee-Smith. "And I, of course, told my little girl that I would love to make her wedding cake when the time came."
Little did she know that her daughter would make her fulfill that promise which was made many years ago.
ChinQuee-Smith's daughter got engaged in January of 2008, and thus began the cake making journey that has culminated in a varied repertoire that includes wedding, birthday, farewell, and other specialty cakes for all occasions.
She has made cakes for just about every function here at the 108th Wing these past few years and the requests keep on coming in.
Although ChinQuee-Smith makes the cakes for similar events at the 108th Wing here, she does not use the same design or recipe for each dessert.
"Everything for my cakes is done by hand and I consider each one of them 'one-of-a-kind,'" said ChinQuee-Smith. "Although I may duplicate the cake pan, each design is individualized to fit the specific occasion or event."
Whatever the recipe or function, if ChinQuee-Smith is making the cake, you can be sure that it will be the hit of the occasion!