In my head, I’m much more crafty than I am in real life. Not crafty in a sneaky way, but crafty in the language of ribbons and bows and perfectly crocheted or baked or scrapbooked items.
This year, I decided to whip up a batch of Cookies in a Jar from a recipe I found on Pinterest, tie the perfect little bow, and then voila, I’d have the perfect gift for my coworkers and friends.
It started out well. I got all of my ingredients and even snagged the last set of quart-sized Mason jars from the store. “Wow. This is working out perfectly,” I thought.
What’s that scripture verse — “Pride goeth before the fall”?
Well, the fall didn’t happen immediately. I did a test jar on Saturday, carefully measuring the ingredients and pressing them into the jar. I even borrowed my mom’s wide-mouth funnel to make the process smoother and was prepared to be a cookie-ingredient combining factory.
Then I measured my flour and whisked in the baking soda and salt. I transferred it to the first jar and whoa the jar was nearly half full with just one ingredient. I checked the recipe and sure enough I’d used the right measurements. I compared the jar to the one I did on Saturday and found a totally different amount of flour in that one — which had fit in the jar perfectly — but since I knew the new measurements were correct was obviously flawed as well.
“Oh, well,” I thought, “don’t panic. It’ll press down.”
Except it didn’t.
Ingredient piled on ingredient until at the very top I was trying to cram white chocolate chips into the jar and force the lid on.
It simply would. not. go.
I looked around my kitchen, strewn with ingredients, and felt hot tears stinging the corners of my eyes. The Christmas plan was in shambles. So, I did what any self-respecting girl would do: I relied on the age-old adage “If all else fails, remove all evidence that you tried!”
Okay, not really, I still have the mason jars and chocolate chips, but I did decide to punt on the idea and go for a tried and true option, swinging by the store and picking out beautiful poinsettias for my work friends.
The quintessential Christmas flowers were greeted with gratitude and hugs, and two of my coworkers said they’d never been given a poinsettia of their very own before. The giving and the remembering was the important part, and we all shared a good laugh at the story of my epic Christmas Pinterest Fail.
So, this Christmas, I think I’ll dial down the harsh expectations of perfection from myself and just focus on the love and peace and joy of the season. I hope yours is very merry — after all a wise man once wrote “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine” (Proverbs 17:22). Let’s put some merry back in the holiday.
Do you have any stories of failed treats or crafts that are part of your family’s Christmas lore? Any advice to share on giving yourself a break even as you try to give everyone else a Christmas to remember? We’d love for you to share them in the comments below.