Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Excitement. Panic. Realization. Calmness.

It happens around this time of year.



The stores are decked out for the holidays, Christmas trees are displayed, winter clothes are being worn, and shopping lists are being planned - the 'I want and I wish' lists, and the 'I can't wait to buy this for my children' lists.

Holiday outfits are being bought, but more importantly, the idea of actually starting that diet has taken over your thoughts. In order to fit into a really pretty party dress - whether to go to a party or to entertain for friends at home - you first have to fit into this dress. With new shoes, of course. So, the diet commences pretty much NOW in order to look your best two months down the road.

The idea of hosting a big Christmas party, a party you've always hosted and had great success with before having children, becomes a possibility in your mind again, knowing that your children could spend the night at their grandparent's house. You start thinking up your 'invitation' list - 8 to 10 couples, with a few other friends, should make for a very festive party. You remember how much fun hosting those big holiday parties were, and you fall into 'planning a party' mode.

You look for the perfect invitations.

Then you buy all the holiday baking magazines you buy every year, except this year, this year you vow to actually make something more than just sugar cookies with sprinkles on top. You, being the brave woman you are, visit your friend Martha's website. Where you are not only overwhelmed and depressed with all her organization tips, her holiday decorating ideas that are sure to make you declare bankruptcy, and her neat wrapping suggestions, but oh, the cookies! You tell yourself you can actually do more this year. There are dozens of cookies to make, all so very pretty. Recipe in hand, you begin to read:

Keep your gingerbread people looking their best: Make sure the disks of dough are well-chilled so they're easy to handle and roll out nice and thin. Roll from the centre out, and aim for an even thickness, stopping just short of the edge of the dough. A quick dip in flour wil keep the cookie cutter from sticking to the dough. look for powdered egg whites in the baking aisle at your supermarket. Prep time: 55 minutes. Total: 1 Hour, 15 minutes, plus chilling.

You begin to sweat, and your nose gets itchy, the way it used to in math class when you never knew the answer. You are under pressure, as you now not only have to become a great baker, but you have to 'keep your gingerbread people looking their best'. You can't even keep yourself looking your best on most days! You realize that this was just the beginning - not even the actual steps for baking the stupid gingerbread men!

Screw that.

You look up the best caterer in town and call up your best friend, who is great at baking, asking her to supply your party with yummy treats.

You know you've made the attempt. And maybe next year you'll move on to something more than sugar cookies, but for now? Right now, your children need you and playing with them? Is way more fun then being a slave in the kitchen!

23 comments:

Susan in the Psych Ward said...

Hanging with your kids is sooooo much more fun! Leave the cookie baking to those who really enjoy it!

Mommy Dear said...

Oh girl, I feel ya! I have so many great intentions, and so often they get pushed aside for much more important things!

Maybe the cookie dough can be freezed? That may help with time, as well. :-)

BeachMama said...

Great post Loukia.

Sadly I am the one baking until 11pm. Each year I make cookies for Hubby's employees. Last year there were 44 people, thankfully this year his staff is back down to a more manageable 20 (switched companies not laid off). And I actually look forward to making all the cookies. That way I get great variety without the 100 or so dozen staring me in the face begging to be eaten.

2 Little Irish Boys said...

I always have grand plans but would so much rather play and hang out with the boys!!

daddy bookins said...

LL,

I used to LOVE the holidays!! Then for as many years as we have lived down here in the valley of heat and despair, it sort of just vanished off into a dusty mirage of a desert sunset...I need cold weather, snow, snow, and more snow to bring that ol spirit back. I remember as a kid having tons of cookies/treats/candy, family over, big surprises, Santa!!!, the list goes on....even as I grew older...I was the Clark W. Griswold Jr of the family...a zillion lights galore on my parents house....crazy! And now...well when it is August, 110 degrees out and freakin' Costco has Christmas Trees and decorations for sale....it hits me even harder...why do we do all this?

I am with you all the way...have fun with the kids...or in our case...kid :o) Hire the caterer, heck we have a landscaper and house cleaner (yes I even gave up on cleaning the house)....anything to make life easier and spend more time the lil ones.....

I'll decorate a cactus this year for you if you decorate a christmas tree....enough rambling...cheers!!

Peas Out!
~daddy b

Chandra said...

It is so difficult for me right now to even begin to THINK about the holidays although they are right ontop of us...

I agree..playing with your kids has alot more appeal then spending hours in the kitchen. That's what Grandma's are for. :)

CaraBee said...

Last year I made tins of cookies and treats for all of our family members at Christmastime. Although I bought all of the ingredients and the cutter and had every intention of making them, I did not make the gingerbread men. Maybe this year.

Betsy Mae said...

What??? Christmas??? Noooo way. It's October...too early. Talk to you in a month.

Neena said...

next time you could let the kids decorate and then get the 'awe!' sound from all the guests!

Theta Mom said...

I totally agree, spending some QT with the kids is much more rewarding than making a perfect batch of gingerbread cookies!

Shannon @ AnchorMommy said...

I've totally had the holidays on my mind too! I have all kinds of plans to make some cool gifts this year -- since I'm not working, I'll have time, right? We'll see how I feel about the notion on December 20, which is when I'll probably be crazily cranking out handmade gifts and cookies, etc. and cursing myself for having such crazy ideas! Maybe your plan is really the way to go!

mistress pink said...

la la la la la I cant hear you........... Christmas , why are you doing this as far as I am concerned it's Halloween and then maybe I will look at the calender and see Christmas, why why why drag out the stress now , so soon .

If you have a free moment check out my latest blog post "I AM GOING TO GIVE YOU A FREE WEBSITE"

Sara @ Domestically Challenged said...

I'm lucky. Elijah LOVES to bake, so we do all the baking together- perfect!

Shana said...

totally agree!!

Kasey@ All Things Mamma said...

That's hilarious and so true!!

Martha always inspires me. Too bad it's impossible to pull off with small kids right now!

Krista said...

This is so funny! I guess I should get all of my baking & party-planning out of the way now, before I have kids? :)

Loukia said...

Krista - I'm unlike most moms. Seems everyone else can do the mothering and cooking/baking thing except for me! ;) I have to change this!

Elisa, The Unlikely Housewife said...

Absolutely! having a big holiday party is a lot of work, you shouldn't do everything yourself! Otherwise you'll be too tired to really enjoy it :-)

Chantal said...

This year I have a pretty good excuse to not bake! And I am going to milk it for all its worth!

Lady Mama said...

Brilliant! I can totally relate. I do this very thing, every year - all these good intentions, and they never happen. I think you'd be totally smart to go with a caterer. Take a little pressure off!

Maria @BOREDmommy said...

Thankfully my parents do all the holiday cooking, and the kids do the baking. So we will do cookies, and the gingerbread house and the sweets - because the kids LOVE it and have a blast doing it. BUT, I can't think about Xmas until the end of November - its TOO EARLY to think about it now!!! I refuse to!

Scattered Mom said...

I often say that when I had Jake, I descended into "Martha Land" for the next few years.

It took me throwing a gingerbread house across my kitchen in frustration to really understand that trying to do it all was NOT what my kid needed.

Buy the cookies, the ready made dough, skip the party, go potluck, or whatever works for you, and enjoy the holiday. Enjoy your kids being little. :)

Martha land is TOTALLY over rated.

Kristin said...

Amen sister. I decided a while ago, that I was going to enjoy being at home with my little man and if the housework fell behind....oh well. : )

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