Cancelled birthday celebrations couldn’t put a dampener on Leading Aircraftman Jin Seo and Aircraftwoman Kelly O’Brien’s quest to finish what they’d started months before.

After completing a four-day cake decorating course in late 2019, Leading Aircraftman Seo and Aircraftwoman O’Brien were given the opportunity to build on their newly acquired skills by designing, baking and decorating a three-tiered chocolate mud cake for the Air Force’s 99th birthday celebrations at RAAF Base Amberley.

Months of design collaboration, hours of baking and careful decorating went into the creation of the cake, the design of which was heavily influenced by the theme for the event: 'People'.

Baking the base layer and the two tiers of the cake in early March, Leading Aircraftman Seo and Aircraftwoman O’Brien stored the cake in the mess freezer, only pulling it out two days before the decorating process.

By that stage, the birthday celebrations had been cancelled due to the current events being experienced across the country, however, Leading Aircraftman Seo and Aircraftwoman O’Brien were keen to see the task through to the end.

"Finding the spare time to finish the cake despite packing down the mess and changing to an in-flight style of catering made things a bit more difficult," Aircraftwoman O’Brien said.

"We had to make sure we practised social distancing while decorating the cake, however, the excitement the cake bought to the kitchen was great.

"Everyone was excited about each step in the process.

"Given the current world events, it was great that we still got to finish making the cake."

With the cake dwarfing those they had baked and decorated during their course, the 99th birthday cake was by the far the biggest Leading Aircraftman Seo and Aircraftwoman O’Brien had ever made.

The cake was cut up so it could be offered to live-in members who picked up takeaway boxes from the RAAF Base Amberley mess as well as to members working across the base.