A recipe for memories


Hershey’s thumbprint cookies; photo by Morgan

Mm mm, I love the smell of cookies baking at Christmas time (well actually at any time), but there is something special about it around the holidays.  My kids always wanted to bake sugar cookies and decorate them.  Thank God when they were younger I had their granny to come over and help me.

We would put my kids and whatever nieces or nephews were here all around a table in the middle of the kitchen and give them icing and sprinkles and they would create their little masterpieces.  By the time they had licked their little fingers multiple times and piled icing on an inch thick, I never could make myself actually eat one, but they had fun and that was what it was all about.  Oh, the mess!   We’d have cookie batter and flour, and icing from one end of the kitchen to the other.  Yes, there might have been a mess, but they were making sweet memories in the process.

Toll house cookies

Toll house cookies; photo by Morgan

Their favorites were the Christmas tree and stocking shapes, so we had the occasional battle over who got the next one.  They would do their very best and wait for us tell them how beautiful their contribution had turned out.  You had to be careful and dole out the praise very equally or one of them would notice and call you out on it.  If I can be totally honest, at the time, I was usually glad when they finished and got bored with the whole baking scene and went back outside to play (this was because at the time I hadn’t learned that they would only be young a short time and the house being clean really wasn’t that important).  Now I am so thankful for those precious memories and that we took the time to let them make them.

Today we did the annual cookie baking, but it was an older crew.  Our youngest member is now 16.  We worked together and got several batches done in no time at all.  I enjoyed being in the kitchen together; the laughter and joking with one another.  Well, mostly it was Kim (a family friend) and I laughing at my daughter, Morgan and her granny.  They are hysterical because they are so much alike.  It was different and some of the players were missing, but it was still enjoyable.

We made Hershey’s kiss thumbprints, pumpkin spice cookies, and toll house cookies with pecans.  I tasted all of them and now I’m sitting here in a post-sugar haze, wishing I hadn’t.  I’m sitting here reflecting on the times I made light of things or rushed through them to satisfy my selfish, control-freak personality.  Gratefully and by the grace of God, I’m once again thankful for age and wisdom and the ability to realize how precious every moment spent with loved ones really is.

Won’t you do the same?  Stop and consider time and its relentless passing and prioritize carefully.  You won’t regret it, not for one moment.

Mitch Teemley

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