I love these Christmas cookies that I’ve been making with my daughters for 13 years. We make a double batch of dough, and we cut out our traditional Christmas trees. I spread perfect almond frosting on top and sprinkle with the same little colored sprinkles. I’m having a great time. What wonderful little cookies! Yes, this is a great time.
It’s a great time until I hear about a cookie exchange my sister went to recently.
She mentions all the treats that people bake from incredible and impossible Pinterest photos including some contraption that involves a brownie that stands like a christmas tree with a candy cane base and decorations like lights. The brownie has festive icing swags and tiny ornament balls and people gasp with delight about them. Don’t get me started on the Christmas cookies composed with fine brushes and palettes of frosting! Don’t get me started on the reindeer with little pretzel antlers and snowmen with slivers of orange gummy for a nose and snowflakes dusted with sugar crystals!
I think about all the perfect little cookies parading on social media this month, and suddenly, my Christmas cookies mock me with their embarrassing, sloppy, amateur designs. How can I deliver these to neighbors and coworkers? How could I ever in light of Instagram madness?
But wait. Wait! I never worried about this before. What’s happening to me? Haven’t people always loved my Christmas cookies?
I look at them again through the eyes of all the love I put into them year after year. I realize it and laugh all afternoon:
These are not sloppy; these are folksy, vintage even. They are hipster. They are down-home, rooted, anti-corporate. These are throwback Christmas cookies to the days before Pinterest and Instagram and Facebook. These are classic, rare Christmas cookies that showcase nostalgia and authenticity and Christmas spirit!
I’ve regained my composure. I continue to decorate my vintage Christmas cookies.