C is for Cookie

ImageThese crazy special days tickle my funny bone. Who came up with Talk Like a Pirate Day? National Lumpy Rug Day? Do A Grouch a Favor Day?

Well, John Baur and Mark Summers came up with Talk Like a Pirate Day while playing racquetball. Men after my own heart!

Ever since I discovered Hallmark’s The Ultimate Holiday Site, I check it every day. Some days I smile and shake my head.

Today is Homemade Cookie Day. Here is how the Hallmark site describes it: “This is the one day of the year when you can legally stuff your face with the chewy, gooey goodness that is the cookie. The catch? You have to make them yourself! You don’t want to be caught walking out of the market with cookies wrapped in packaging, do you? The cookie police will not take kindly to that on this sacred day. But you might be able to bribe them with snicker-doodles.”

Snickerdoodles! We are pros at making snickerdoodles here. Our son was taught to bake them at an Imageearly age. He would pack them in empty ice-cream buckets and take them around to the neighbors.

My grandmother made the most amazing sugar cookies. The cookie jar at her house was always full for the grandchildren. We could only have one per visit, and what a special cookie it was! They were big, round, super soft, and always iced with PINK icing.

Grandma eventually gave her recipe to me. I’m a good baker, but I could never get my cookies to come out exactly like hers. She used to laugh when I would question her about leaving out an ingredient. I think the missing ingredient was nothing more than Grandma’s loving hands.

When our son was thrown out of daycare at the tender age of three (he led the charge, opened the door to the outside, and all of the children followed him), I quit my job to stay home and take care of the boy myself. As Christmas neared that first year, I decided to bake Grandma’s sugar cookies for some extra money. Of course the cookies were in Christmas shapes, iced, and decorated.

ImageAll of the girls from the weight loss company were my first customers. I baked for days on end to fill their orders. Word of mouth brought more orders. My sister and I went to craft shows, and I took cookies. They always sold out.

It was an astounding amount of work, and it was exhausting. Our neighbor hadn’t seen me come or go for many days, so he came over and knocked on the door. I was covered from head to toe with flour as I opened the door, and all I said to him was, “Welcome to hell.” He laughed and went home with a dozen cookies.

We burned wood in the fireplace at that time, and the main floor of the house was too warm to store the cookie orders, so I kept them in an unheated room upstairs. I was rushing one day to bring orders down, and I had boxes in both hands. I lost my footing and took a ride down the steps on my rump. I didn’t dare drop the cookies. The cookies survived; I ended up at the chiropractor.

I baked and sold cookies for three Christmases before I hung up my apron. I was sick of Christmas sugar cookies by then, and I don’t eat them anymore. Give me a good homemade snickerdoodle any day!ImageWhat’s your favorite homemade cookie? Do you have a cookie story? Or better yet, a falling down the stairs story?