Sunday, January 2, 2011

Christmas Cookies




It started as a simple thing on my Christmas to-do list.

One year, I said. Some day, I said, I want to make Christmas cookies.

They always look so pretty in the magazine and television ads, perfect little snowmen dusted with white sugar, Santa with his white beard made of frosting, glittering snow flakes and those perfect little gingerbread men.

I can do that, I said.

I say that a lot. "I can do that." I believe it too. But more than that, it was something I wanted to do -- especially once Lora Leigh came to be.

In 2003, Lora Leigh was a month shy of 3 -- the perfect age. And I finally found my window of opportunity -- Christmas Eve Day, during the afternoon, before church. It also seemed to be a good way to kill those impossibly long hours of the last day before Santa Claus comes (and before church).

Armed and ready with one little container of a dozen or so never-used cookie cutters, my grandmother's ancient rolling pin, a few cans of colored icing and a can of shaker flour, we gathered around the dining room table and created. And made a huge mess.



Lora Leigh was thrilled, however, and offered up a huge homemade cookie for Santa (which he dutifully ate!)




It was only the beginning of what has become a wonderful Christmas tradition at our house. Christmas Eve Day is reserved for cookies.

Over the years a wide assortment of friends and family have joined in the fun. Daniel and Courtney have even turned it into a little competition.

And my one little box of cookie cutters has morphed into six rubber containers of every imaginable color of icing and sugar sprinkle and more than 100 cookie cutters.

We still make a huge mess.





But while the mess can be cleaned, the memories are indelible.

And it has become one of my favorite parts of Christmas.

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