Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Traditions. Come December, they are blissfully unavoidable. One of my all-time favorite traditions during the holiday season revolves squarely around cookies.

Baking them. Exchanging them. Delivering them. Eating them.

As a kid, my friends and I would gather in the kitchen at a cozy farmhouse up on top of a very big hill. We would bake dozens upon dozens of cookies, all while eating our healthy share of dough and giggling our way through sugar-high versions of our favorite Christmas carols and hymns. Once cooled, the cookies would be packed up and delivered around our sleepy little town to those simply needing to know someone was thinking of them.

Today, cookie making is still an important part of my friendships during the holidays. While we no longer bake in that cozy farmhouse up on top of a very big hill, we still eat too much dough and laugh until we cry. Our generosity has evolved, though dropping off cookies still happens on occasion.

We at next summer hope your traditions continue this holiday season. And, for those of you without traditions, we hope you consider starting some of your very own. They are part of living a good life.

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix 1 cup softened butter, 1 1/3 cups light brown sugar, 2 eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract.
  3. To the mixture, stir in 1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  4. Mix in 3 cups rolled oats and 2 cups of white chocolate chips (Hello, White Christmas!)
  5. Spoon equal sized bits of dough on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 10 – 12 minutes.
  6. Eat one… or two, but save some to share with friends and neighbors. And don't forget to bring in a few for us to try as well. 

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