Monday, December 07, 2009


Before Kate and Jack, my most anticipated moments to becoming a mom were the making-gingerbread-men-from-scratch kinda ones. I just couldn't wait to share that type of activity with my kids. The reality? It drives me absolutely bonkers.

While making gingerbread men yesterday, I kept reminding myself of Marie's holiday motto "Keep it simple, keep it special." I had to tell myself over and over and over that...

These are just gingerbread men.
We are not Martha.
They do not have to be perfect.
It is just flour.
It is cheap, and it cleans up easily.
(my goodness they like flour!)
I want the kids to have fond memories of baking.
Being irritated isn't helping that goal
nor is constantly telling them the "right" way to do it.
So I just need to let the kids do it
with as few "no's" as possible.
And once I stepped back and let go,
I realized we were having a great time!
I use a Martha gingerbread recipe for our cookies but add an extra egg because we tend to use a lot flour when rolling them out. Did I mention all the flour?!? Argh.


Marie Green said...

I honestly don't like the children's "help" in the kitchen, or doing kitchen related "projects" with them either. I have learned to only allow ONE child to help (say with making dinner), and that's more enjoyable. Also, I keep reminding myself that those "magical gingerbread memories" can happen when the kids are 10 or 12, and actually "helpful".

That said, we usually do a few cookie baking experiences each Christmas. And you're right- you just have to let them make a HA-uge mess and be ok with it. (I sometimes go so far as to plan such projects for just BEFORE we're about to clean the house. Easier than RIGHT AFTER I JUST CLEANED THE FLOOR, ya know?) (Uptight, much?)

Also? Those gingerbread men look really, really tasty!

(Thanks for the link!)

Penny said...

LOL! Tim's all about "helping" at dinner time - I try and find simple jobs for him to do but it's not easy.