Thanks for the compliments everyone!
Anne- I’m american, but also 100% engineer. At least the stereotype for engineers would have it that obsessive attention to detail goes along with the engineer type of personality. I don’t know about that, but I do like to make things look nice.
Loopy- you should try fondant! I was surprised how manageable and fun it was to work with. Not that I did anything too advanced, and I still need a lot more practice getting the creases out toward the bottom of the cakes, but it was much better than I was anticipating. Definitely a good choice for hot weather over buttercream since the fondant actually likes to be hot.