Friday, December 9, 2011

Christmas Baking

I have a love/hate relationship with Christmas baking. Baking is one of my skills and quite possibly the reason my husband married me. I love to do it but I tend to go into overdrive, stressing myself out and wasting supplies.  Christmas baking is expensive enough without wasting your goods!

Over the years I have:
  • Bitten off more than I could chew resulting in throwing out unfinished batter and/or unfrosted cookies
  • Allowed my perfectionism to make me miss opportunities to have my younger children help
  • Exhausted myself to the point of not being able to enjoy the holiday celebrations.
 This year I have decided to limit what I bake to just our favorite cookies and cut back on the batch size.  While difficult for me to do, I felt this was necessary to not only help in the de-stressing of Christmas but to also cut back on Christmas spending.  Here is what I am planning on having this year for treats.
  • Molasses cookies - I’ll share the recipe later
  • Carrot Cookies
  • Chocolate chip cookies. I know I had said earlier that my original plan was to skip these but we had some company coming so I decided to whip up a batch and stick them aside for Christmas
  • Popcorn balls
  • Frosted cut out cookies – One of our local grocery stores sell baked, unfrosted cut out cookies. I buy a few dozen for us to frost.
 As I’ve gotten older I’ve mellowed out some as far as my perfectionism goes. This has allowed me to accept help and make my baking experience more enjoyable.

This year my mother and I planned on spending a day together baking. Unfortunately there was only one Saturday that worked for the both of us and that Saturday happened to coincide with the only time my cleaning ladies could come over. I actually almost didn’t bake with my mom so that I could have my kitchen cleaned!

As I was biting my nails, agonizing what to do I gave myself the proverbial kick in the pants. Earlier this year my mom’s heart stopped beating. By the Grace of God and the remarkable coordinating of events by her guardian angel, she came through the ordeal relatively unscathed. We’ve been told that 19 out of 20 people who arrive at the ER in her condition either die or have brain damage. The only lingering effect of her ordeal is an implanted defibrillator. Was I really going to miss the change to spend a day baking with my mom just so my kitchen would be clean? Absolutely not! We had a very nice day baking together and I just lived with having to clean my own kitchen. :)

In addition to letting my mother in the kitchen, I’ve started insisting that the recipient of my baking skills help with the baking process. My husband is more than happy to roll popcorn balls & help dip molasses cookies when he knows he’ll be getting to sample the goodies!

Last but not least, why go through the trouble of having children if we’re not going to take advantage of the cheap labor? When it comes to frosting cookies it’s all hands on deck. Even my son is not exempt from cookie frosting. The trick is to make sure that the cookies I frost are set aside for company while the everyone else’s cookies are for the house

How do you handle Christmas baking in your house?

I'll be linking this up at Life as Mom

You might also like:
Shopping Wisely
Saving for Christmas
Christmas Tree Cheese Display

1 comment:

  1. I can be so Martha Stewart about decorating the cookies, too! This year I had the kids decorate cupcakes for my daughter to take to school for her birthday while I did the snowflake cookies for my daughter's party.

    I also try to keep the cookies I make pretty simple, like balls or bar cookies. I love roll out cookie but they do take some time to make.