Tyler and Aidan are only 7 months apart, so had been assumed from the start that they would be great playmates. Well, maybe not from the start since infants are not really all that social, but rather a society unto themselves. Eventually, though, it was assumed they would move on to parallel play before graduating to joint mischief making. It didn't work that way.
At family gathering time, one would run in the door, spy the other playing with me, and become indigent. Neither was convinced that Granmas can be shared. Secretly, that is a pretty special memory for me - I do love it when mini-men fight over me. Tyler and Aidan shared air space for years, but little else.
About two months ago, we had another family gathering, and just like that, a switch flipped. The minute the door closed behind the second of them, Tyler and Aidan were off and running. They chased and laughed and shared toys, each trying to top the other with imaginative uses for blocks and cars and Duplos. The adults in the house all stood, mouths agape, wondering what just happened! They were playing together with peals of laughter and screeches of pure joy!
Recently, I had just Tyler and Aidan over for a play date. In the way of the spring of 2015, the butterfly farm plans were washed away along with the anticipated park visit, leaving me with two grandboys and their combined energy factor of 10. We made cookies - Snickerdoodles, to be specific.
After carefully washing our hands with soap and water, we mixed together butter, eggs and sugar. (Note to self: little hands like to turn on the mixer. Beware speeds five thru ten.) We dumped in the flour - with all that implies. (Dustbuster to the rescue!) After a few other minor ingredients, carefully planned so the number of "helps" was evenly divisible by two, the real fun started. We rolled cookies into balls. This is a certain cookie talent that is not well developed at ages 3 and 4, the ball rolling, that is. We ended up with snakes. Never having been a reptile fan, Granma stepped in to help with the rolling motion, or at least to coil the snakes back upon themselves for a friendlier form.
Their ages and eager hands, however, made them very good at rolling the cookie dough in a mixture of cinnamon and sugar. The dry mixture attaches to the dough very well. But just to be thorough, grandboys, both, licked their hands, ostensively to test quality and to aid in its cookie adherence. Judging by their sticky noses and goofy grins, they were quite satisfied with their efforts. This is the reason we make cookies that must be heated several hundreds of degrees prior to public consumption. No-bake cookies are not an option.
The great cookie challenge took almost an hour of well spent efforts, exclusive to kitchen clean up. So what did we do in the next hour? We put on a movie, created with Play-doh, Legos, Marble Works and puzzles. By then, Granma needed a cookie break with two of the proudest bakers ever. We all munched as two high-pitched voices explained the process using expansive hand gestures to illustrate.
They might not be ready for the Food Network, but those were some of the best cookies ever, sprinkled with love and laughter - and just the right amount of grandboy spit. Cookies, anyone?