Last week I was scrolling through my Facebook feed and I came across a shared post. A bakery in Albany, Oregon was offering free cakes to Foster Care children who had an upcoming birthday. Amazing, right? A simple gesture but one of the most compassionate and loving things you can do for a child. My husband said immediately to me as I had the same thought, I need to reach out to them!
This week I was able to speak with the family. They are absolute gems!
Mariah and Tanner have been foster parents for a little over 2 years. While they never had plans to foster or intended to, they knew they wanted to adopt. They got a call from a friend who told them about two kids who were in a desperate need of a roof of their heads and a safe and loving family dynamic. Without hesitation, Mariah and Tanner took in the children for a year and a half. It was then they realized they had a heart for it and could do this for other children as well.
They have had 16 children come in and out of their home, mostly short term but some have stayed for a while. They have 4 foster kids right now; 1 year old twins, a 4 year old and a 5 year old. Mariah said the twins are just an absolute trip; and are a mirror of each other…if one is happy, the other is happy, if one is upset then you best believe the other is as well. Mariah joked about her house being the best kind of chaos there could be. The couple is certainly hoping to adopt when the time is right.
Mariah’s husband, Tanner, works 40-60 hours outside of their home per week for the state to provide for their family, ensuring Mariah can pursue her passion of baking from their home. Last year in May is when Frost & Flour made their big debut. It has taken off and it’s success has both surprised and humbled the couple, who simply wanted to provide for their ever changing family. Both Tanner and herself are thankful for all the success. When they began to Foster, they quickly realized working full time jobs outside of their home was a feat with young children. There are lots of appointments, lots of drop ins, and their schedule has to be flexible at all times. Mariah and Tanner never know when they are going to get a call, and fostering children definitely keeps them on their toes as they have to be flexible.
Tanner also happens to be youth pastor at their local church. Mariah notes how hard he has worked to provide over the last few years so she could follow her dreams of baking. They amazing couple also donates a portion of all profits to the local church program for foster care and adoption. When asked what provoked the idea behind Foster Cakes, Mariah said they knew they wanted to do more. One of their foster children who came to their home had never had a birthday cake of their own. It broke their hearts that something so small was taken for granted by so many. She stated it is something that most people take for granted, and it truly opened her eyes and sparked a mission in her. Every child deserves a cake on their big day. Mariah and Tanner set off to change that. They started Foster Cakes last week. Foster Cakes has already gone viral with over 100,000 views and shared by even more.
Mariah and Tanner hope that they will inspire others. She states, “there are a million ways to help foster care children, this is just one of them.” Mariah and Tanner challenge everyone to find one way they can help foster care children, and put those actions into motion.
Mariah has received a total of 7 cake orders, and has 2 of them done so far. She still has a whole inbox full of messages that she has to get to. A lot of the messages they have received are of support and words of encouragement. She has a lot of people asking to help her. While they certainly wish to continue to do Foster Cakes for as long as they can, they still have to find the balance of maintaining a successful and profitable business that provides for their family as well. There are lots of ways that YOU can help programs like these and get involved yourself.
Oregon is proud to have Frost & Flour as a staple and leading the way for their community and Foster Care. If you haven’t already, go check them out and like them on Facebook!