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I made cookies today with my family.  I wish I could say that it was easy.  The end product makes it look like it was just a fun day, and it was, but there were some glitches.  Isn’t it great to see the end product?  When you’re blending the butter, eggs, sugar and flour, it is hard to picture the decorated cookies in a holiday dish. Here’s our picture of cookies made by my family:

  

When we started the journey to make cookies this morning, I looked up the recipe online then quickly remembered that the dough would have to chill for two hours before we could roll out the cookie dough and cut them out with our Christmas cookie cutters.  We decided to make the dough with each of my children adding ingredients but soon, I noticed that the mixture seemed dry.  Somehow I was able to push the dough into two large balls, wrap them in parchment paper and chill them, but was concerned that when we would roll the dough out in a few hours, it would crumble.  Well, my prediction came true.  I ended up having to melt two extra sticks of butter and work it into the dough so that it would stick together and allow us to make shapes with it using cookie cutters.  It was frustrating to have a recipe not turn out the way I had expected.  The cookies tasted great though and we had a lot of fun shading the icing into different colors and adding our own touches.

This wasn’t the first time during the holiday season when an event had not gone as expected.  A few nights ago, my family drove 45 minutes to a nearby town, McAdenville, which is known for the beauty of its holiday lights throughout town.  We had been there a few other times but never had we been kicked out of the town.  Well, it happened.  Yes, to us.  We had gotten off the interstate and waited for an hour or so while stopping then moving for one second then stopping again.  

We saw a lot of lights, red lights from the brakes of the cars in front of us.  Eventually, I heard a siren coming from behind us.  My husband pulled to the left into a median lane since we were in the left of two lanes heading into the town.  There was a median lane then two oncoming lanes which were empty.  I rolled down my window and the Highway Patrol was speaking through his megaphone, “Get out of the lane.  You’re blocking traffic!”  He had been plowing through the middle of the two lanes behind us to get those in the left lane to get out of the way.  There were no signs telling us to not travel in the left lane.  Soon after, we realized that up ahead only the right lane would be able to turn right which would lead into McAdenville.  The officer’s directions were followed by us.  We got out of the lane and proceeded down the median lane.  Once we reached a stoplight, we could see the lights of the town to our right.  Needless to say, we had waited for a very long time only to be forced out of the lane so my family was shocked.  We had already had to leave one side of McAdenville which only let in residents with a permit earlier so we had done our share of waiting.

Could it be that our plan was different from God’s plan for our night?  Obviously.  I realized very quickly that even though we missed our chance to see the lights, I felt comforted in knowing that God just didn’t allow our plans to happen.  I sensed that God protected us from something.  I don’t know what that “something” was, but I knew that I could trust God.  The night didn’t turn out just like we had expected but it was okay.  

Even though we were forced out of Christmas town, the rest of Christmas has been so special.  Watching The Nativity Story on Christmas Eve, going to church on Christmas Eve, eating Christmas Eve dinner with my loving family, seeing such joy on my kids’ faces when they saw their gifts on Christmas morning, opening presents with my husband, our children and our parents and making cookies has created loving and lasting memories for me.  

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