Making Family Memories

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Laughter, shouts of joy or the fun of challenging my sisters, form the cornerstone of my childhood memories. My most powerful memories are usually connected to vacations or holidays when the normal patterns of life were broken by long road trips in the car, new adventures, visiting with extended family or celebrating a once a year tradition. At the heart of many of our family traditions was a special meal shared with family and friends. The time spent baking, cooking, decorating or preparing for that meal was almost more important any other part of the experience. This is when we talked through personal challenges, asked about family stories and formed an understanding of family togetherness.  

In today’s digital world, it is easy to have every person in the family doing their own thing online missing out on some of the shared experiences of vacations and holidays. We love to encourage families to use cooking and preparing for holidays as an important shared family experience. Children love to help with food preparations, especially when they can participate in a hands-on way. For many winter holidays, baking pastries, cookies, cakes or pies is a big part of the preparations.  Finding cookbooks that are written for children help them be fully engaged in the family experience. Here are a few of my personal favorites. 

American Girl Baking

From Christmas cookies and pecan pie to winter-themed cupcakes and sweet giftable confections, there’s a special treat to help celebrate your favorite festive occasion. In these colorful, inspirational pages, you’ll find recipes for beloved baked sweets to mark holidays such as Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve, as well as ideas for entertaining and gift giving. The more than 50 enticing recipes include everything from cookies, candies, cakes, pies, and cupcakes, to muffins, sweet breads, rolls, and waffles.

Jewish Holidays Cookbook: Festive Meals for Celebrating the Year

The traditions and recipes of Judaism are celebrated in this beautiful modern cookbook geared toward kids and their families. Eleven Jewish holidays are discussed and accompanied by recipes for the ancient and modern foods traditionally served. Kids can lead the charge on braiding their first challah or making their own kugel, while sping time learning about Jewish history and heritage.

Kids bake! 100+ Sweet and Savory Recipes

Ready, set, BAKE! Featuring more than 100 simple triple-tested recipes, from Bacon Cheese Popovers to Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake, this is the perfect book for young bakers!

Pinkalicious Cupcake Cookbook

Shares recipes for more than twenty cupcakes featured in the Pinkalicious stories, from a classic cupcake with a cherry on top and a princess and castle cupcake to a snowman cupcake and a cake pop flower.