The Spirit Of Giving Just Stabbed Me With A Fork

I don’t know what I was thinking.

Call it temporary insanity or an over-inhalation of holiday spirit, but I thought it would be fun to not only make  cookies for our neighbors, but to make the cookies with my littles.

ornaments The Spirit Of Giving Just Stabbed Me With A Fork by Gina Valley even put on Christmas music.

Clearly, I was out of my mind.

It seemed so simple. Make basic sugar cookies. Squirt some frosting on. Deliver the sugar-based nuggets of holiday spirit to our neighbors. A great time of family bonding and embracing the spirit of giving to be had by all.

How could making cookies with my kids not be a joyful, fulfilling experience? Because I was trying to make cookies with my kids.

Kids don’t like to make cookies. Kids like cookies. Kids like the idea of making cookies. But, kids have no interest in the actual making part of the making of the cookies. Somehow, as I assembled a 3, a 4, an 11, and a 12 year old, inspected their hands, made them re-wash (with soap this time. I don’t want to kill any neighbors with the cookies), and wrapped them in aprons, this fact eluded me.

Even during the first 2 flour fights I held steadfastly to the notion that this would be a fun, productive time together.

When the 12 year old pretended to crack an egg on his head and the 3 year old copied him, but didn’t quite get the “pretend” part right, I laughed it off. Protein is good for her hair.

When the 11 year old ate his entire ¼ of the batch of dough while I was looking for the rolling pin, I reminded myself that we didn’t have to give cookies to all of the neighbors, and I used visions of sugarplums to push fears of salmonella from the raw eggs in the dough out of my mind. I held on to my festive hopes. After all, we have a low medical insurance co-pay.

Dough Rolling Pin The Spirit Of Giving Just Stabbed Me With A Fork by Gina Valley the first pan of cookies was finished cooking, I was in the bathroom explaining to the 3 year old that she had to take off her tights to use the toilet (and that she would in fact still be a princess even when she took off her tights), so I didn’t hear the oven timer.

I did, fortunately, hear the smoke alarm. It covered the sound of me gritting my teeth. The cookies were so overcooked that the 4 year old squealed with delight, “Oh look! They’re chocolate!” They were not chocolate. I was not smiling.

While I was taking the last of the cookies out of the oven the 12 year old decided to stage a stealth dough scrap assault on the 11 year old. Blood curdling shrieks from the 11 year old ensued. I used my sing song voice to tell them that I would likely run over both of them with my car after I got the dough out of the 11 year old’s eye.

When we returned to the kitchen, post dough-ectomy, we found our 100 pound lab/saluki mix on top of the table sniffing, licking, and standing on the cookies. Ironically, the Christmas music CD was blasting Joy to the World. My sentiments were otherwise.

The 12 year old pointed out, helpfully, that the dog didn’t appear to have actually eaten any of the cookies. He just seemed to be playing with them. That concerned me.

Oreo Cookies Dough Rolling Pin The Spirit Of Giving Just Stabbed Me With A Fork by Gina Valley 11 year old suggested that perhaps no one would notice the cookies were wet once the frosting was on, and that he was pretty sure the sugar in the frosting would kill any germs. I made a mental note to never eat at his house when he’s grown up.

I hate to admit that I started wondering if frosting really does kill germs.

I decided to Google that on my phone, at the grocery store, while we waited in line to pay for the 10 packages of holiday Oreos and Circus Animal cookies we would be giving to our neighbors.

Passing out pre-made, pre-packaged, holiday cookies to our neighbors with my littles.

How could that not go well?

 – gina

Are sugarplums dancing in your head or being hurled at you by your holiday fantasies?  Shoot me a comment, you’re already here anyway, and I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

Note: This post is based on an article by Gina which appeared in Inspiring Women Magazine’s December 2012 issue


The Beginning
About gina valley

Gina Valley is a humorist who lives in Los Angeles, California with her dear husband (The Professor) & her always adorable seven children (The Pack). She loves to cook, if someone will put the ingredients in those little glass bowls, & spends much of her time carpooling and inventing new curse words (at the same time!). She’s not your typical soccer mom, loves ridiculously high heels, & is addicted to her smart phone. If she’s out of chocolate, run and hide! Connect with Gina at, on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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  1. John Kowalski says:

    Great article. It brought me back to similar efforts with my kids. Thanks. Merry Christmas!

  2. Happiest Daddy says:

    Love it, Gina! And it sounds ridiculously familiar. Like the time our 3-year-old wanted to help make scrambled eggs and we wound up with raw egg dripping all over the counter, drawers, chairs and floor.

    Remind me to stop by the next time I’m hankering for dog slobbered Oreo’s.

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