Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Baking Cookies

There has been a long standing tradition for my brother and I to bake sugar cookies with my grandparents for the holidays. When we were younger it would end up being an all day ordeal of baking and decorating, followed by hot dogs roasted in the fireplace and a ride around town to see all the lights (complete with popcorn). We take traditions very seriously in my family (can you tell?) Over the years things have changed. My grandparents would bake the cookies before we got there and we no longer packed into the car for a night drive, but we always managed to make cookie decorating happen.

We cheated and bought the Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie mix.

Why does dough always have to be such a challenge?

This year we hadn't planned anything, until I casually mentioned making cookies to my mom one night. Personally I favor peanut butter cookies over the sugar cookies when it comes to taste, but you don't decorate PB blossoms. It wasn't the same without my grandma there. Even though the last few years she has needed lots of help making the dough, her decorating skills were still spot on. Nothing is quite the same after you lose someone, but it's nice keeping up traditions even in their absence. I'm incredibly thankful I have so many wonderful memories with her from years past.

I'm bummed I didn't get any pictures of after we decorated the cookies. I was too busy licking frosting off my fingers. My grandpa must have gotten rid (or we used up) some of the sprinkles from years past because we typically have a surplus of decorating options, but we could only find a few different kinds of sprinkles this year. Instead we improvised with M&M's and some food coloring. Our cookies definitely looked different than anything we'd made in the past, but sometimes deviation leads to the best surprises.

The mixer also broke while we were making the frosting so that was an added challenge. We had to adapt to the old school ways of hand mixing. Not as fun as it looks, but my right arm got a great work out today.

Do you have any cookie making traditions? What holiday cookies are your favorite?


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