On Saturday, I went over to my friend Shelja’s host family after waking up at 9 o’clock in the morning in order to do some Christmas baking. For Shelja and I, it was the first time we were baking so it was supposed to be a learning experience as well. Shelja’s host mom Erin and her daughter Thea picked us up outside the Union and drove us 12 miles out to nearby town Cresco, where Erin’s parents lived. At first, I was a little anxious about meeting so many new people at once, but I felt at home as soon as I stepped outside the car. Maybe the 19 cats which greeted us had something to do with that.
Within minutes, we were rolling up the dough and using cut outs to make little Christmas themed cookies. It was then that I realized that I had made the mistake of wearing a black shirt. Luckily enough, Erin let me borrow an apron so that I don’t get too much flour on the shirt… Now I was really dressed for baking. We had a good system going on as well. I would roll the up the dough, while Shelja and Thea would do the cutouts (the hard part). And there you have it… Division of Labor (My econ teacher would have been proud).
After the cookies were in the oven, we waited around for them to come out for what I thought would be the most exciting part of the whole thing. Decorating the cookies. However, I soon discovered that I was not as creative as I thought I was. The cookies I decorated was nothing compared to the cute little Santa Thea decorated, the snowman from Shelja or the Norse head made by Erin. At one point I was so frustrated at my lack of creativity, I just sat there eating the cookies I was supposed to be decorating… and the frosting at the same time.
Once we were finished with decorating the cookies, we started cooking some Indian food. We made lentil curry (Dal if you had read my previous blog), we made spicy beans. Meanwhile, Erin brought some very well made mac and cheese and cinnamon flavored vegetables. After a hearty lunch, and some more time playing with the 19 cats around the house, we headed back to campus. I stepped off the car all fresh and actually excited to get to my revision and homework. So there you have it, if you are stressed…bake it all off.