Instead of doing anything actually productive about Christmas such as sending cards or buying presents or wrapping presents, I've been baking cookies.
More and more cookies.
Which goes against every grain of my soul. I don't know anyone with the exception of possibly two people in my life who actually need any of the sugar and fat in cookies. Cookies are...well...just little sugar and fat bombs. That's all they are.
So yesterday I made pecan puffs and peanut butter blossoms and the day before that I made mint chocolate chip cookies and then there was last week's sugar-cookie fiesta wherein I rolled out and baked and decorated an acre of the little things. Trees, angels, gingerbread men and women, candy canes, stars.
I don't even know what I'm going to do with these cookies. I have a vague plan about giving them to friends and neighbors or, well, I don't know. This would be fine except that would mean I have to take them to people and taking cookies to people involves putting on a bra and putting the cookies on a plate with maybe a bow or something and, oh god. I might as well just go to the mall.
But. I have been fairly cheerful!
And today I have to go to town. No two ways around it. I am babysitting for the boys for a few hours this afternoon and there are a few things I must go to the mall for because there is nowhere else in town I can get these things and oh boy. I just can't wait.
Why do we DO this?
Mr. Moon is stressing out like nobody's business about the one gift he has to find and purchase which is for me and why can't I just tell him, "Oh honey, here, order me this..."?
I'll tell you why- I don't need or want anything.
It's been such a comfort in the kitchen. Creaming butter and sugar together, adding vanilla (and I'm almost out of my Mexican vanilla and dammit! I hate that), cracking the beautiful eggs my hens have been so lovingly giving me, measuring the flour, mixing it all up and rolling up little balls of fat and sugar bombs and baking them in straight little rows on cookie sheets and rolling the baked little fat and sugar bombs in more and more sugar and lining THOSE up in straight little rows on wax paper and I realize- I've reverted back to my nine-year old self who baked because it was comforting and a neat little hat trick (you made these yourself?) but dammit, it's not amazing when a fifty-eight year old woman makes cookies. I mean, it's just not.
It's sort of pathetic.
Well, Christmas brings out the best in all of us, doesn't it?
No. It does not. Not for me, anyway, and so I comfort myself with the oldest kitchen ritual I know while the news gets weirder and the funerals continue and the speculation as to how and why reaches a frantic pitch and the religious among us try to rationalize what god was doing when babies were being slaughtered and preach to us that we've kicked god out so why should we expect him to be there when we need him and the NRA finds itself in a cold, dark place where their arguments freeze and fall and crack on the floor and Facebook is full of "Let's all pray for the children and brave teachers" and meanwhile, the people of Newtown are pleading with reporters to leave us alone, just please, back off and give us some space here, and the stores are filled with crappy crap that even I find myself reaching for because, well, I don't know what to buy and the Muzak (oh god, oh god, oh god! the Muzak) is telling us that it's the MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR! and the days tick down and all I want to do is to be in the kitchen, rolling out dough and planning a Christmas Eve dinner and I keep holding on to that image- the Christmas Eve dinner.
I want all my babies to be here and I want to make the foods that make them happy and I want to see their smiles and pass Gibson around and I want to see Owen beside himself with excitement and I just want to love on my family and see their eyes shining, to feel what is true and what is real without the lacquered layer of artificial gloss applied.
No wonder I don't want to leave the kitchen where the miracles of butter and sugar and flour and heat are real and tangible, where attention must be paid but where nothing I do can truly end in disaster.
Good morning, y'all.