I'm not the best cook, but I'm not completely useless in the kitchen. I'm vaguely aware that there is a difference between cooking and baking, I've even been known to surprise my little family with a good home cooked meal every once in a while, and my meatloaf is pretty spectacular, if I do say so myself. But it's my husband who actually loves to cook and is really good at it! I don't mind cooking if I have to, it's just that I'd rather.....not.
But I do lack any shred of creativity. Pinterest is a Godsend for people like me! I sort of just offered to make cookies for the soldiers without really thinking about it, and then frantically searched Pinterest for a recipe that I could maybe pull off. THIS is the one I decided on. I didn't want to make cookies from store bought cookie dough, but I also didn't want to stretch my limited abilities. I got discouraged when I read "sift together" and "cream the butter," but knew that Eric was in the living room in case I needed back up. Plus, we had all of the ingredients- I didn't feel like putting on a bra just to go out and buy cookie stuff, so if it meant that I had to figure out what "sifting" meant, I was all for it!
I followed the recipe almost exactly, except that I used two eggs instead of one. The dough was dry and it made me nervous so I panicked and put in a second egg. After all was said and done though, just one egg would have worked too, and maybe the cookie blog lady really does know what she's talking about.
I had never chilled my cookie dough before baking them- what a neat little nugget of information! Except that for my first batch I didn't let it chill long enough, they ended up turning out fine, but I got overly stressed that the dough was still really really sticky when making the cookie-balls and they weren't looking like the picture on the blog- mine were spikier because the dough kept sticking to my hands. It was either put the rest of the batter in the 'fridge overnight, or start crying. Chilling the dough overnight actually made forming the cookie-balls so much easier and my second batch came out even better!
I have very little experience with soldiers coming home from deployment. My soldier was deployed when I met him- we spent 6 months talking through webcam, email, instant messaging, and on the phone before meeting in person. Even though we fell hard for each other during those 6 months, we had to meet in person first to know where our paths were going before we could really know how hard it was that we had fallen. It's because of that that I was so emotionally detached from his deployment and the reality that he was facing on a daily basis. It sounds silly now, but at the time, I didn't bat an eyelash to the fact that Eric was at war. I just didn't get it. I was too busy working full-time, going to school full-time, and raising my toddler to worry about this cute guy that I really sorta kinda liked but thought in the back of my mind that there was a chance he could be an ax murder who just says he's deployed overseas.
Now, 9 years later, I have a slightly better idea of what soldiers go through during deployment, but just slightly, because I'm betting it's something I'll never truly understand.
Most of the soldiers coming home are single and live in the barracks so they don't have a whole lot to come home to, we're trying to make their homecoming a nice one. They decided that they wanted food that they could grab-and-go, rather than a sit-down meal. I'm not sure that my cookies will make any difference in how welcomed they feel- Eric says that the gesture is nice, but it's likely that they'll be in a hurry to go home and won't notice, or care about, my sloppy handwriting or that the cookies aren't perfect circles. I'm just happy to help in whatever way that I can, but thankfully, I'm not the only one bringing food & cookies.
But it would do my OCD good if Eric is right.