Wednesday, December 18, 2013

on sugar cookies and patience

While perusing the aisles of the grocery store on Friday I practically ran into a huge display of baking goods, frosting, sprinkles, sugar cookie know, the kind of display that tries to trick you into buying a million things you don't need?
Well, heaven knows we didn't need sugar cookies, but Christmas was only a week or two away and our household hadn't even come close to hitting the type of sugar comas you'd expect over the holidays.
It was also inverted and terribly depressing outside so naturally sugar cookies just seemed like the solution.

Min and I got to work as soon as we opened the front door and took our coats off.
She jetted to the bathroom to get her beloved stool, which she pretty much tries to bring into the kitchen every hour of the day so she can "make" something or another.
Perhaps it was that Lou Lou really needed to go down for a nap and was semi-wailing as I tried to get the cookies cut out or the fact that Minnie was trying to eat all of the cookies I'd just laid on the cookie sheet and totally mutilating the poor uncooked gingerbread men and teddy bears, but I was having a very hard time getting in the spirit of it all.
And gosh, the reason I'd even picked out those sugar cookies and rainbow sprinkles in the first place was because I knew, I just knew, Minnie was going to love it.
But there I was, nit picking at all of the little things she was doing, forgetting that she was only two and that the cookie dough sitting right there in front of her must have just been too much for her to take.

Patience is a virtue I am learning steadily but far too slowly for my liking {see, I'm ridiculous}.
Motherhood has challenged me so differently than anything else ever has or probably ever will.
What's a little mess? What's rolling out another gingerbread man? So what if she eats all of the sprinkles and rubs frosting in her hair?
That's why cleaning products and baths were invented, right?
It's childhood.
It only happens once.
And man, I really want my girls to enjoy their childhood.
I want them to look back and remember how fun it was, and how I was there too, in the mess of it all with them, not hovering over them shaking my finger in disapproval.
Goodness, I'm trying.

Once the cookies were baked we took a little break so I could get Lou down for a nap and the cookies could cool.
I prepped all of the frosting and decorations while Minnie played upstairs for a minute.
I thought about how I wanted her to remember this day.
I wanted her to have fun.
I went upstairs and carried her down to show her the decorating spread I'd put out on the table and she immediately went to work.
She probably ate more candy and sprinkles and frosting than she actually put on the cookies, but I could tell she was really loving helping me "make" them.
She even gave all of her little gingerbread men and teddy bears candy "boobs".
When I laughed she told me quite seriously, "It's not funny," and then continued decorating.
Apparently I need to stop being so childish.
Once all of the cookies were done we laid them out and she looked up at me and asked, "They're bootiful?"
Yes, they were very beautiful, boobs and all.

It was in that moment that I saw this little gleam in her eye that I hadn't really noticed because we'd both been so busy working side by side.
It was a look of real joy.
It was the look I'd been hoping for when I grabbed that cookie mix off the shelf at the store.
It's the look I hope I see a million times over as my girls grow up.

Of course I'm a mom and of course there needs to be discipline, but gosh darn it, there needs to be  fun too.
A LOT of it!
So here's to trying, and here's to patience and here's to letting go, getting messy and seeing that look over and over because man, it never gets old.

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