Give the Girl Some Grace!

Welcome  I’m going to confess that being the parent of a 12-year-old girl is an experience unmatched by anything else in the world.  If you are currently or have ever been the parent of a 12-year-old girl, you may have just shouted a little “Amen!” right there.  And we had a morning last week that confirmed this opinion for me.  Yet I was the one who walked away with the lesson.

Food For Thought  I had an extremely grumpy girl one morning last week.  We’ve had very few “full” school weeks this winter due to an unprecedented number of snow days in our region.  So our routine has been, well, not very routine.  Throw in a time change and a push to get final tests and projects turned in before leaving for spring break and this leads to early morning grumbles.  Who am I kidding?  They weren’t grumbles.  They were snarls, snaps, and growls.  I was bracing myself for the bearing of teeth!

As the parent, I am not a fan of my kid getting snarky and hateful with me at any time, and certainly not over something as simple as brushing hair or putting on a hoodie.  But it was that kind of morning.  And I was well on my way to being snarky right back.

As she slammed the car door, I egged her on, “Well aren’t you just a little ray of sunshine this morning?”  She pulled her hood down over her face and slumped in the seat.  All this is going on as our favorite Christian radio station is playing in the background.  As we started the four mile drive to her school, I was hit with an amazing thought…”Give the girl some grace!”

I realized that I, too, have my fair share of grumpy mornings and even days when I wish people would just sort of leave me alone.  And I do remember back to those days between 11 and 14, when I was a moody mess for no good reason.  It seemed I would be in trouble with my mom no matter what I said or did and I always felt like a mess.  These are not easy years for parents, but if we’re going to be honest, it’s no picnic for the kids either.  So, if I’m going to be quick to expect grace from others when I’m feeling a little irritable, I should be just as quick to extend the same grace to my daughter.  I know she’s basically a good kid and she’s doing the best she can during these very confusing years.  So, yes, I’m going to give the girl some grace!  Are you willing to do the same?

Today’s Scripture  Without grace, we would all be a lost mess.  If God can extend grace to me , his imperfect child, after all my big screw-ups, surely I can extend grace to my own child over a minor irritation.  Grace…the greatest gift!

Today’s Recipe  It’s nice when we can fix our kids’ troubles with something as simple as a cookie.  But for all the times we cannot, we need to call upon the Lord and pray for our children and their daily lives.  A cookie can’t fix everything, so it’s a good thing we have grace!

Somedays, though, I can cheer my daughter up with some good music, a hug, and some fresh baked cookies.  These Salted Caramel Candy Cookie Cups could do the trick!

I am “that” mom, who almost always has ingredients to bake cookies or brownies and sometimes I get a little creative with those ingredients.  These “three ingredient” cookies result from having a leftover roll of chocolate chip cookie dough from when I made Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars.  I had some bags of assorted mini candy bars I had picked up on the Easter candy aisle, just because.  I also had these leftover salted caramel-flavored melting wafers from a Christmas candy I made a few months ago.  The next thing you know, we have Salted Caramel Candy Cookie Cups.

Cookie cups are one of the easiest and most versatile cookie recipes you can have in your arsenal.  All you need to start with is a mini-muffin tin and a roll of refrigerated cookie dough.  From there, you can pretty much add any candy you like…peanut butter cups, Rolo candies, mini peppermint paddies, I could go on and on.  Plus, you can drizzle the tops with any kind of melted candy wafer, chocolate or caramel sauce, or a dollop of frosting.  My daughter found these candy cookie cups to be quite fun because it was a surprise to find out what candy you had inside…Snickers, Milky Way, Twix, or 3 Musketeers.  This is also a great recipe for letting the kids help make the cookies.

Salted Caramel Candy Cookie Cups

Makes 48 mini cookie cups

Ingredients

  • 1 30-oz roll of refrigerated chocolate chip cookie dough-I used Pillsbury
  • 48 assorted miniature chocolate candies, unwrapped
  • 4 to 6 oz salted caramel-flavored candy melts
  • Note-if you cannot find salted caramel candy melts, you can also use caramel ice cream topping or another flavor of candy melts to drizzle over the top of your cookie cups

Directions

Set oven to 350 degrees. Cut cookie dough into 48 pieces. To do this, I started by cutting my dough into fourths, then cut each of these in half. I then took each of these sections and cut into sixths so that I would have mostly even pieces of dough. Place each piece of dough into an ungreased cup of a mini-muffin tin, no need to press down. I had to do this in two batches because I only have one tin.

Bake cookies at 350 for 11-13 minutes.

Remove pan from oven and immediately place an unwrapped candy in the middle of each cookie piece. allow to cool 10-15 minutes before removing cookies from pan and placing on wire cooling rack.

Place a large sheet of wax or parchment paper under cooling rack and prepare salted caramel drizzle.

Melt caramel candy melts according to package directions. Using a spoon, drizzle the caramel back and forth over the tops of the cookie cups.