I bought a Wilton book of Tiered Cakes. It was extremely helpful for me when I got started. Michael's, JoAnn's, and Hobby Lobby all have Wilton brand items and some even offer classes to help her get started. Best of luck in your search!
Abstract is taking an item and looking at it in a new and different way. For example, if you are taking a picture of a folding chair, instead of taking a picture of the whole chair, photograph just the hinge portion that makes the chair work. Or instead of taking a picture of a whole bicycle, photograph the chain wrapped around the gear. Or something as simple as a shadow cast on a wall or the interesting pattern in a sidewalk. It's anything that represents the idea of the whole item instead of the whole item itself.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. THANK YOU!! This is the first time that I've ever crocheted anything from a pattern, and this is just gorgeous! I am so super proud of myself and the way it turned out that I can't wait to make another one. Here are some photos of the finished project. I used Red Heart "Cherry Chip".