cookie lady.

Back when Josh was signing up for church duties left and right, he signed the pair of us up for cookie duty. During the announcements for each service, after the sermon but before the offering, the priest invites us all over to the building next door for "coffee, cookies, and healthy stuff," the last item being cut-up vegetables with ranch dressing dip. It's a nice opportunity to catch up with each other and eat snacks. No one would come if it was just mingling with friendly Jesus-folks, but the cookies are how they getcha.

I thought that we were just being signed up to bake cookies and bring them to church. However, we had actually signed up to bring food, set everything up, keep things filled, and then clean it all up afterwards. Later, they sent around another signup to get people to just bake cookies. As a result, I never have to bake cookies anymore, but I do have to cut up vegetables and then wash the tea receptacles.

Fellowship, as it's called, is run by a former nurse named Sandy who likes to bake experimentally and then use her church pals as guinea pigs. I complain about Josh signing himself up for things and then I complain louder when he signs me up for things, but I do enjoy doing Fellowship. It's very well-attended, and is an especially good way for new folks to mingle and be harangued into signing up for things welcomed. So it's an obviously important ministry, but actually doing the work is pretty laid-back and out of the spotlight. I like to serve quietly.

So an unexpected result of joining the Episcopal church is that I suddenly have go-to recipes for several varieties of cookie. Because I do not like to get up early on Sunday mornings, I started freezing dough ahead of time. In my freezer, you might find dough in roll or ball form, all ready to be put on a cookie sheet and baked to perfection.

With such a ready supply, I end up finding other uses for the cookies-to-be, as what I have learned from the Episcopalians is that God loves everyone, and everyone loves cookies. We had family over for a cookout last month, and in an effort to keep things simple, dessert was cookies and watermelon. Then again last weekend, we were invited to a get-together at a friend's, and we brought beer and, yup, cookies. On both occasions, I received numerous compliments and heard many yum-yum noises, but the surest compliment of all is that the cookies disappeared.

I feel like I'm becoming some kind of bona-fide Cookie Lady. I am totally okay with that, because nobody doesn't like that lady. Just think of all the emergency situations that could be handled by a warm cookie. Neighbor helps us move an electric organ? Bring him some cookies! Need a gift for your postal worker at the holidays? Cookies in the mailbox. Surprise guests? NO cookies, because they should call ahead next time. You get the idea.

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