Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Cookie Baking Lessons

I'm not a mom that relishes baking with her children.  It stresses me out because I'm so focused on getting the recipe right that I treat the kids like a distraction rather than a delightful part of the experience.

Just being honest here.

I think a lot of it has to do with my personality.  In the battle between getting to the destination and enjoying the journey, I'm a destination-focused girl.

I'm working on it though because I know that being so driven toward a goal can leave collateral damage in my wake.  I want my kids to know I enjoy them and not feel like interruptions or distractions.

Which brings me to cookie baking.

Yesterday the kids and I made some gingerbread cookies together.  It started out rough because the dough was hard to roll out and then became too soft and often broke when we used the cookie cutters.  Also, I made the worst icing ever because it was very hard to spread.

I was thinking the whole thing was a giant disaster until I noticed my kids were having a great time.  They started mixing icing colors together to watch them swirl, they laughed when the reindeer's leg came off and I think more icing went in their mouths than on the cookies.  I stepped back and looked at the whole scene and felt the tension melt away.  

And I started to have fun, too.

I'm not really into making New Year's resolutions, but yesterday clarified that I need to work on enjoying the journey in 2009.  The Christmas season seems like a great time to get a jump start.  

I think I'll start by working on a gingerbread house with the kids.


Cheryl said...

I love this story. I had a similar experience. If you were to take pictures during those times, no one will look at them and think "what a mess" "looks so disorganized" (and if they do, shame on them!)... they'll see what you saw when you stepped back... the experience of open hearted children.

Just Me said...

My pet peeve at Christmas was the tree. It had to be perfect! Our tradition was for me to put up the tree, string the lights and garland, then the kids and hubby would decorate it. After everyone went to bed, I would make adjustments to make it "perfect". I thought no one knew...WRONG!! A few years ago, I was accused of just that! CAUGHT!! So, now...I put up the tree, and unwrap the ornaments...and let them decorate...and don't move a thing! And ya know what...I enjoy it so much more now!! Glad you could learn this lesson when your kids are so young...wish I had!

Mom to 5...Daughter of the King said...

Thanks for this reminder! I am the same way when it comes to cooking with my kids.

Momto3 said...

I hear you! I stopped baking homemade cookies for Christmas a few years ago because it stressed me out so much. For a few years, I just bough the premade shaped ones and the boys put those on the cookie sheets and decorated them after they baked. I am going to make homemade ones this year, just one kind, since Ethan has an egg allergy.

Sue said...

Very inspiring, I must say! I also get too focused on the destination and end up missing out on all kinds of neat stuff along the journey. I need to "step back" more often. Thanks!

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