My nieces, aged 2 and 4 were over tonight. Now my nieces are two of the most terrific, talented, beautiful and creative preschoolers out there, but they play big and they play loud. And why not, say I. But I was anticipating having to put Baby D to bed, and so I was trying to think of something we could do that would be of a — if not quiet — semi-controlled nature. I decided we should make cookies. Hooray for me! What a fun thing to do! What a brilliant and superior aunt I am. I pre-measured everything in my French glass nesting bowls. Perfect! We would only have to dump everything in and watch the mixer go around. Send me a Mensa form! They are in need of my services!
Everything was going perfectly according to plan. Older E was in charge of the wet ingredients in the mixer. Younger N was in charge of sifting the dry ingredients. I have a lovely, sturdy Kitchen Aid stand mixer. It is perfect for making all kinds of treats to delight the epicurious, but it does require a delicate touch at the control. (You see where this is going, don’t you?) I rarely can get C to operate it because it doesn’t take much to take it from “stir” to wheeling off its stand at number 8. Well, we were sifting and mixing and mixing and sifting and having such fun. I was giving E a little help which she was perfectly glad to get when adjusting the Kitchen Aid. Hooray! Cookies! Mmmmmm! Things were going so well, the girls decided they would like to switch jobs. Why not! We’ve made it though the tough parts of the egg and the vanilla. E dumped the flour into the bowl and N got ready.
“Okay, N,” I said. “I’ll just help you get it turned on” . . . at which point tiny, little 2 year old N gave that switch a big tug up to six. Flour . . . everywhere . . .everywhere . . . everywhere. For the first time since they had gotten to my house, there was silence.
At which point I threw back my head and laughed. Well, why not? What did I think was going to happen when you let a 2 year old at the mixer? And weren’t we having fun?
Yes, we were . . . and eating mighty tasty cookies, too.