Growing up, food was the remedy for everything. It brought family together and was at the center of every table at every event. Over the years, my mom taught me that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. She was right about that–I’m pretty sure my cooking is what wooed Derek back in the winter of ’07.
Instead of going to the gym today and fighting off the mobs of early-New-Year-Resolution-ers, I figured we’d make cookies. Derek was doing some work at my dad’s, and Bean and I had some time to kill. My ass gave me a lecture about not making cookies this year, but after the shooting massacre yesterday, I thought a little flour and mess in the kitchen would set my heart straight again. Ella had a grand time and watching her joy was good for my soul. Look:
I had purchased some pre-made gingerbread dough a few weeks back and it was perfect for this little adventure. I rolled out the dough in front of Ella, gave her some cookie cutters and she was off. She’s made cookies with Tracy (her 2nd mother and daycare provider) so many times that the kid can do it in her sleep. I was impressed–she cut out trees and snowmen and angels like it was nobody’s business!
While I was impressed by her amazing cutting and decorating ability, I learned something else about our child this morning. She has an amazingly kind and giving spirit. As we were cutting and sprinkling and baking and cooling, she said to me, “We give these to Tracy?” Truthfully, that was not my plan. I was going to stuff Derek with them and then take the leftovers to school to share with the other teachers. I stopped what I was doing and I looked over at her. My eyes welled up with tears and I said, “Yes, baby, we are going to give these to Tracy. What a wonderful idea.” She smiled. I felt proud and honored to be her mother.
In the wake of all the tragedy this week, our two year old wanted to do something kind for someone else. She’s learned the art of giving from us and from Tracy and was trying to repeat it. Of course, I know that she doesn’t fully comprehend the meaning of the season and giving, but it was something. She can comprehend love and I found it inspiring and beautiful.
So check out our creations; our offerings, if you will. They definitely will not be appearing on the cover of Martha Stewart Christmas this year, but it’s all good. Maybe we’d make the cut for some kid cookie making segment on the public access channel! Who says that angel gingerbread with dinosaur sprinkles aren’t Christmas-y?!
So, wherever you are, stop everything, scoop up your loved ones (young or old) and make some cookies. Turn off the news, turn on some music, and laugh. Maybe for a little while, it will set your weary heart free.