Monday, January 25, 2010

Building Kitchen Traditions: It's Never Too Early to Start!

Can you remember the first time you "cooked" or "baked" in the kitchen? Even though we might not be cooking three meals a day from scratch like our grandmothers did, there's an opportunity to start new cooking traditions for ourselves, our friends and families.

We've recently started a baking tradition with my friend, Mama A and her daughter, Little I, who will be 3 in February. This was our second year of baking and decorating sugar cookies together and it was fun to see Little I's interest grow. I've learned that it is never too early to start building a new kitchen tradition.

Last year, Little I was almost 2 when she came over to decorate cookies (in photo above). I was amazed at her interest and ability to gently pick up sprinkles from Mama A's hand and delicately put them on the cookies at such a young age. Click for the full post on Little I's first sugar cookies.

This year, Little I's excitement about making cookies was wonderful to see. I received a lovely "princess" cookie cutter set which was perfect for this occasion. What a difference a year makes as Little I was more engaged and wanted to be even more involved. I made the cookies in advance and prepared the buttercream frosting. While Mama A put on a layer of frosting, Little I eagerly selected the sprinkles and put them on the top of the the cookies. It was a great moment to talk about the different colors and shapes. Little A had lots of opinions about which colors she wanted to use!

She also really enjoyed eating those sprinkles!

Three different generations were involved this year as my mom, "Grandma" Gail, stopped by and joined in the decorating fun.

Baking cookies together will be a yearly kitchen tradition we will continue. I'm also excited to start a cooking tradition with Little I where we make something with fruit and vegetables and other healthy foods.

Do you have any kitchen traditions with your kids or friends or family?

Are you thinking about starting some new kitchen traditions?