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Fall 2001 Table of Contents
Versión Español de este artículo (Spanish Version)

The Story of These Chocolate Chip Cookies

By Ellen Oestreich, Parent, Humble, Texas

Editor's note: Kate Moss was recently invited to participate in a wonderful parent support meeting in Humble, Texas, near Houston. When she arrived at the school where the event was to take place, she was given a basket of goodies. Among the goodies was a canister of cookies and this little story. She felt that the story was worth sharing with our readers; so here it is. The cookies were worth sharing as well, but she didn't seem inclined to want to share them.

As is usually the case in our lives, we got home a little later than I planned. After the day's activities, I was looking forward to baking cookies with my daughter. We arrived home to a HOT house. We quickly changed into our "baking attire" and began measuring, pouring and mixing. In an effort to speed up the process I threw the butter into the microwave and began to "NUKE" it until it was fully melted. (What I had forgotten was that it would have melted in mere seconds just sitting on the counter of the HOT kitchen.) We cheerfully added the dry ingredients. Flour, sugar, brown sugar, salt, etc. Little grains of ingredients were flying everywhere and creating smiles. Mixing took place next and then adding the eggs and vanilla. The final and key ingredient ...the chips...went in last.

As we stirred and munched on the few remaining chips in the bag something was happening to the dough. HMMM...it is much darker than usual! As you may have guessed by now the coveted chips were melting and giving this chocolate chip cookie dough a look all its own. Oh well ...cookies are cookies to this family, so we baked and watched and baked some more. After licking the bowl we enjoyed a glass of milk with our fresh baked treat. While they looked different and were not quite what was expected, they none the less hit the spot and provided smiles for this mom and her daughter.

I decided this cookie experience was God's way of reminding me that the unexpected can bring life and laughter to any day. It is all in the perspective! While I was planning for a typically developing chocolate chip cookie, something special happened to the mix. The look and texture was different, but the enjoyment of a warm cookie and a glass of milk shared with a precious child was the same. No chocolate chunks to bite into, but the wonderful chocolate flavor spread throughout the whole cookie. Our "chocolate melt" cookies were yummy!

Now realizing I had committed to baking cookies for visitors, I whipped up another batch after Caitlyn was asleep. The new batch was filled with "typically developing" chocolate chip cookies. They looked like the cookies I have always baked. They smelled like the cookies I have always baked, and, yes, they tasted like the cookies I have always baked. What was missing with these cookies? I had no partner in crime. I missed the smile and peace I felt when I watched Caitlyn grinning and eating and even drooling a chocolate drool. It did not matter to her how the cookies looked, only that they were cookies and she could enjoy them before bed.

I suppose this is a lot like life. It is easy to get caught up in standard expectations and forget that sometimes the best things 5 6 come from the unexpected. There will be some people in this life who cannot deal with the unexpected. There will be some people who deal with it but will be uncomfortable. There will be some people who accept it and look at it as a golden opportunity. Each and every one of us has the right to be who we are and deal with things the best we can. I hope that I can learn from my child how to appreciate the unexpected. If I can spend more of my time looking for the unexpected, no two days will be the same, and life will never be dull or boring.

On that note, there are both varieties of cookies to enjoy. Remember: they are both cookies; they were both made with the same ingredients and love; and they both taste great with a glass of milk and a favorite partner in crime! Our hope for you is that you will be the best you can be today and that your life is rich and full of ordinary and extraordinary.

Peace, Ellen and Caitlyn

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Last Revision: July 30, 2002