As the holidays take over my usually frazzled life, I find that the holiday spirit is a little hard to grasp onto this year. I’ve done the usual decorating and eaten way too many cookies, but it seems as though I am in a grinch mood. These past few days have been spent baking, however, and as I put the finishing sprinkles on my mouthwatering shortbread cookies, I found myself starting to feel the first tingles in the pit of my stomach.
Cooking has always been pretty enjoyable for me, but baking is another story. I always get frustrated and give up if I’m making cookies and I can’t get them in the right shape, or I spill batter on the counter, or I get my hands sticky and then touch my phone. It gets even worse if I manage to get them in the oven, only to have them mould themselves into a cookie blob in the middle of the pan. Sure, a good taste is the most important part about baking, but the cookies have to be somewhat presentable, don’t they?
So, when I started baking a couple of days ago, I wasn’t sure how it was going to go. I knew that one little mistake would send me roaring off in a tizzy and any hopes of getting my holiday spirit would be out the window. I was pleasantly surprised, though, that when I did make the mistake of adding double the sugar (I swear, I thought the recipe said 2 tablespoons!), I got upset, but just carefully started spooning the sugar back out until it looked more reasonable. I was so impressed with myself that the rest of the baking adventure went by without a hitch!
Now, at the end of it all, I have two batches of severely misshapen peanut butter cookies, a slightly undercooked batch of ginger cookies, and two perfect batches of shortbread! I then had the brilliant idea to slather them in frosting and then throw a couple of sprinkles on there, just to complete the whole experience.
As I finished baking, I was so glad to see that I could still touch the magic of the holiday season, even if it took two weeks and five batches of cookies to achieve it. I guess growing up means that you have to find the holiday spirit by helping others instead of excitement over what you yourself will receive or gain. Sure, it’s corny, but it’s the truth, and I look forward to doing even more giving next year.
So, with the whole wonderful adventure behind me, I now find myself ready for the hot chocolate, fire place, and Christmas carols. Just in time, too! What are some of your favourite ways to get into the holiday spirit? What are some traditions that you want to share with the future generations?