Day 159: Valentine Hazelnut Cookies-Baking with Toddlers
“I try to see each tragedy in the context of other, bigger tragedies in history. That gives me a larger focus and makes it easier to bear.”
I’ve said it before: we all go through things. Life is not always easy, and it doesn’t always turn out the way you expect it to. Life is life, and it is full of happiness and sadness, and everything that makes us human.
Take for example, being a parent. Being a parent is probably the hardest job I have ever had. Why, some of you childless ask? Well, I’ll tell you that it is so difficult to know consciously that everything you do, each mistake you make, each choice you make…all of it can be repeated by this miniature version of yourself and the person you love, or once loved (hopefully).
Being a new mom, I’ve run into so many types of parents-the “book” parents that do everything that one or another book may say, the religious parents that “train” their child, the old school parents who let their children cry themselves to sleep…but one thing I’ve learned…we must make our own choices, and see our child in the big picture. I think that’s what this means-look at the larger picture. If my daughter eats a piece of chocolate or goes to bed a little later, it really doesn’t matter. You know? Life is short. And it’s hard sometimes. You know what makes it easier? Take it easy. Relax, but have faith and work hard. It’s not that bad. And anyway, you know what? Actually, this is a large world we live in, filled with many, many people. Chances are, there is someone else in your situation or worst. So you aren’t alone. Life is hard. Shit happens. You know? But we must always remember to practice peace and compassion from within ourselves. If we do this, then perhaps the burdens become easier to bear. Right?
Today’s crafty endeavor is something to do with your children. I love to bake. I even further love to bake with my daughter. Today, I had a friend over, and we got ready for Valentine’s Day by making Valentines and baking some delicous cookies. I love to bake so much. And I love to make art. It’s even more fun to combine the two. Now, this got me to thinking about a goal of mine. I ordered some flash cards, a few days ago, in hopes to teach my daughter to read before the age of four, as my mother taught me. Of course, my mother is a teacher, but that’s beside the point. I thought of how cool it would be to combine learning with art. So since I had so much fun with my little one, and her friend today, I think I’ll repeat it again, next time with the alphabet.
Hazelnut Valentine Cookies
1/3 c vegetable shortening
1/3 c salted butter (don’t mock me by using margarine. please)
3/4 c light brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon Hazelnut non dairy coffee creamer (the liquid kind, you know by Coffeemate. Only I used the generic brand. nothing but the best, for my cookies)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups flour
1 cup confectioner’s sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon Hazelnut Non Dairy Creamer (liquid, as aforementioned)
So, for the dough, cream the butter first. Then add the sugar, salt and baking powder. Beat until combined. Then add the egg, creamer, and vanilla, and then the flour. Then, just cover and chill for about 1 or 2 hours, depending on your fridge’s temperature.
Then the rest you know how to handle, hopefully. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to about 3mm thickness, and cut out some heart shapes.
Bake in a preheated oven for 375 degrees, for about 7 or 8 minutes, and let cool.
Mix together the icing ingredients, and frost the little hearts, being careful to not let too much of it end up in your little one’s mouth.
Then, add some sprinkles.
Here’s some valentines my little one made. We used glitter, of course. One is for my husband, the other is for my mother in law. Where’s mine, you ask? Well, it’d be weird for her to make one with me. So maybe mine will be made tomorrow, when my husband has the day off.
Nice, right? Yeah, she’s an artist, all right.
Of course, it’s more fun to eat them.