Okay, so maybe baking cookies seems like it has nothing to do with writing, but ‘us creative types’….I like to think I’m in that category….generally have more than one outlet for our creativity. For me that would be sewing and cooking, and more specifically baking cookies. Not that I ever follow a recipe exactly. In fact, I’m not sure that I’m actually capable of following the recipe…or pattern if I’m sewing. I always know that if I tweak it a little, add a little of this, cut a little of that, change my technique a little….I can make it better. I guess I’d have to say that I “edit” my cooking. I know it sounds ridiculous, but you know how it is when you’re working on a piece…..you proofread for errors, and you just know you can make it better. You may have been over it a dozen times, but you know there’s a stronger word, this paragraph over here could flow better, and if you rework that line you can give it more energy.
So, that’s how I am with my cooking, and cookie baking is my favorite kind of cooking. Baking cookies is a way that I show love, it’s how I celebrate, it’s therapy, and it’s what I do when I hit a block in my writing. Today it’s sugar cookies made with cookie cutters and my favorite icing, tomorrow some oatmeal craisin cookies, and next week maybe delicate carrot cookies with an orange glaze. If I’m in need of comfort, good old chocolate chip cookies, and when I’m feeling passionate double chocolate thumbprints. I rarely eat them myself (good thing or I’d be in big trouble!!) I give them to friends and neighbors, and my husband and sons are more than happy to eat my offerings.
And my writing affects what I bake. If I’m working on a no nonsense non fiction article, I’ll make some peanut butter cookies, (although I may dip them in chocolate just to add a little nonsense). If I’m frustrated with a character in my book, I’ll pour through my cookbooks to find something new, something that gets me thinking in a new direction……but if I feel I’ve gotten too far off track, I may pick something a little healthier like my whole wheat applesauce cookies with some walnuts.
Everyone who knows me expects cookies when they see me, and they all have their favorites. When I don’t bring cookies you’d think that I forgot to wear pants…..
“Tari’s here where are the cookies!” echoes around me when I show up at family functions.
“Hey, where are the snickerdoodles?”
“See she loves me more she brought butterballs my favorite!”
Of course I’ve carefully nurtured my baking reputation, and my close friends and family know that when I die…..hopefully I’ll be baking many more cookies before that time…..but when I do, I don’t want a funeral. I want them to celebrate my life, and have a cookie party. I want them each to take the recipe for their favorite cookie that I bake, make the cookies….put their own special touch on them, and bring them to the cookie party to share with my loved ones. No wearing black, no sad eulogies, no crying (okay maybe a little), but mostly celebrating life, sharing special memories, and sharing the love they put into a special treat.