Thursday, November 17, 2011

Sugar High

So, I said yes to the cookie exchange. I did! In the end, I was tipped over to the "end up with 15 dozen cookies in the freezer at a time of year when fat and sugar take the place of mood-altering medications" option by two things: a.) the suggestion by two of my friends at playgroup yesterday that I contribute fudge rather than cookies, since my fudge recipe once made approximately ten trillion pieces of fudge, so much fudge I couldn't give it all away, and the cookie exchange could involve a daunting amount of baking, depending on how many people sign up (not decided for sure on the fudge, by the way; I do love to bake); and b.) the cheery, infectious attitude of my friend (and my kids' pediatrician) Heidi, who wrote on Facebook, "what could be bad about baking a ton of cookies and coming away with just as many cookies as you made??" (or something to that effect).

In other words, I chose to embrace the fun and crazy parts of the holiday season (baking a zillion cookies!) rather than get too stuck on the sabotage-the-bathroom-scale aspects.

With kids in the house, you have to give all the way in to Christmas. I don't mean you have to go big and expensive and elaborate and excessive; you all know I wrote about the exact opposite last year for BlogHer. I mean that children force you, as a parent, to focus more on the joyful, even frivolous aspects of the holiday season, rather than either sort of ignoring the holidays altogether or ruminating mainly on the bills and chores and extra work involved (both of which I have been guilty of in my previous, childless life).

And if that means baking a zillion cookies and possibly eating just as many,'s best to adopt my friend Heidi's attitude and just enjoy it all--preferably with your kids--as much as you can. That can be challenging if you're struggling financially or you're dealing with health issues or winter makes you feel like stabbing yourself in the head half the time. Believe me, I know. But you can still try. And children's happy, excited faces and grabby hands and sticky sugary smiles help with that.


Catherine Koons Hubbard said...

I think this is spot on. As someone once said, and as had been quoted to excess, when we're eighty, I doubt we'll look back on the holidays and wish we'd fretted more about bills and chores and spent less time baking cookies with children.

Mom said...

Exactly! I have so many precious memories of Christmas celebrations with you girls down through the years, and it means a lot to me to see you repeating many of these now with your own little ones!

Mnmom said...

I find excessive cookie baking to be a rather inexpensive activity that produces a lot of bang for the buck. It's so cozy and cheery and you can always give away cookie plates that make non-bakers so happy.

A teacher friend of mine said that teachers LOVE to get homemade treats from good cooks because teachers usually don't have time for this themselves.

See my blog for more thoughts on Christmas cookies!

Shannon said...

@MNMom: so true. I totally agree with you. And good point about giving treats away; I do a lot of that and people get VERY excited. :)