My friend Pat has been baking cookies for her church, neighbors, family and other friends since her daughters were babies. They're really big babies now but still she bakes and somehow hooks me into it. It's been happening for a long, long time. Her kitchen takes on cookie factory proportions and honestly, I have no idea how so many of us fit comfortably in the kitchen and baking area but we do somehow.
There is CHRISTMAS music playing on the iPod stereo and her house is decorated brightly with a dazzling tree and hanging, dangling festive holiday flare is everywhere. Her house is warm and toasty and alive with the scents of cinnamon and ginger and melting chocolate. The peace is interrupted only by her exclamations of "WHY DO I SMELL COOKIES BURNING?" and "HOT HOT HOT HOT HOT!!" as she races from the kitchen with a tray of cookies fresh out of the oven.
You really don't want to be in her way when this happens. Don't ask me how I know.
She's a task mistress and there is no farking around with her. She will give you The Look if you don't fall in line. She has recipes and a schedule and things must roll at a good clip. She has it down to a science. She knows how long it will take to measure, sift, mix and place dollops and how long it will take to roll dough and she knows when her daughters will reach saturation point but these days with teenagers, she's reaching saturation first.
She has peanut butter cookies with a giant chocolate candy kiss center, traditional chocolate chip cookies, pecan balls dipped in confectioner's sugar, raspberry strippers with a lemony drizzle. Oh my goodness, the raspberry strippers are so yummy.
This year, in memory of her dear friend Barbara who recently died, Pat added Barbara's own absolutely delicious Ginger Snap cookies. It was a sweet and poignant
addition to her line-up.
The cookies were all finally baked after a day of slaving and whip cracking and there we all sat while flour floating through the air like mist. I sat and knit with no cookie related stress.
Pat, on the other hand, was exhausted and she would truly kill me if I posted the photo of her once the last batch of cookies were out of the oven and cooling on the racks.
A few moments of rest before the horrific realization that the Christmas Turkey was yet to be purchased and thawed. I think I left right around that same time. lol