There in the kitchen

When I was a child, my mother was always baking something fabulous.

Cupcakes, whoopie pies, cakes, brownies, and cookies.  I can’t remember a time when we didn’t have a baked good in the house.

I remember clinging to her side as she incorporated her ingredients, waiting so impatiently for her to finish with the mixer because I knew that when she was done, she would hand me the beaters, the mixing bowl, and the spatula. I savored every last drop of the batter. I think I may have enjoyed that part more than the finished product.

But now, when I bake with Katie, I can’t bring myself to let her have that same joy.

The thought of her getting sick from the raw eggs overpowers my desire for her to know the same joy I knew, there in the kitchen with my own mother. I almost wish that, like my mother then, I didn’t know about the dangers of eating raw eggs.

So, when we bake, Katie’s joy is different.  Her smiles come from lining up the cupcake liners, peeking in the oven as the cupcakes bake, and carefully decorating them once they’ve cooled.

There in my own kitchen, as I witness Katie’s happiness, I miss my mother so very much.  Those days in her kitchen are some of my happiest memories of us together.

Thank you, Mom. Thank you for always saving the beaters, bowl, and spatula for me. I love you.


  1. bywordofmouth

    My girls are quick to grab those spatula's – so far so good!
    You are such a great photographer – what setting do you use for those close ups?
    I want to reach out and eat one ;)

  2. Tracie

    Her cupcake is so cute….it is just bursting to overflowing with love!!

    I think I might be a bad mom, because I let my daughter have the bowl and spatula sometimes.

  3. tsonoda148

    Lovely post! Beautiful pictures!

  4. kate b

    Adorable I can't wait to have those moments with Ava. Oh and Katie needs to slow down on that growing thing she's getting so big and gorgeous.

  5. Mandyland

    Adorable pictures! I had to smile at the differences between what my mom allowed and what I allowed. Sometimes ignorance really is bliss. Especially if it involves chocolate cake batter. :)

  6. andygirl

    oh Katie looks so cute! love the baking shots. love.

    both my parents were fabulous bakers and I totally loved licking the beaters. best part. they never taught me though so I can't bake for crap. I'm a good cook but have no instincts for the chemistry of baking. luckily, my roomie is an excellent baker *and* she's vegan so no raw eggs in any dough. yum!

  7. How fun! It looks like Katie had a fabulous time making those delicious cupcakes :) What a wonderful memory you have in those moments baking with your mom. Gorgeous pictures too Nichole.

  8. Efloraross

    My hubby and I have had a conversation about this. I always licked the batter, as did he. But I am not comfortable letting SB do it b/c of the raw egg thing. Hubby says it is a rite of childhood. We haven't pulled out the blender yet, so I'll have to see how I do when the time comes. We use pre-made, pre-cut cookie dough right now. SB arranges them on the cookie sheet – which can be quite interesting. When we do sugar, she loves to dip them in sprinkles…

  9. Your photos are beautiful! The cupcake liners are adorable (though not as cute as Katie).

    I LOVE the licking the spatula part, still (hangs head in shame). When I was pregnant, I would mix everything together BUT the eggs, dip and lick my spatula, put that spatula in the dishwasher, add eggs, re-mix, and bake as usual. I blame the horomones :)

  10. I won't lie…I survived a many a raw batter consumption so I let my son lick the spoons ;)

  11. Jaime

    Oh I love baking with Ainsley. I still remember the first time we made cupcakes. It was the weekend that I miscarried my second pregnancy and it just lifted my spirits so much! However, I do let her lick…because I can't resist the urge myself!

  12. TamingInsanity

    Oh, Katie in that apron just made me want a girl so badly.

    Except really, we both know I'd be a better mom to boys.

  13. thirstymagnolia

    Yep, add me to the camp of I-let-my-kids-eat-raw-batter. But not all 3 things, just usually the spoon/spatula.

  14. Pasturized eggs. I at the batter. All my kids ate the batter.

    But it's up to you, darlin', and what you are comfortable with.

    I couldn't give it up.

    And I SO want a cupcake now.

  15. LoL I have those same kinds of memories. Those? Are some of the few *good* memories I have of time spent with my mother.

    I understand where you are with the raw eggs. Because I feel the same way…altho I still like the beaters/spatula/bowl…just away from prying eyes. At least I know the risk I'm taking. I can't quite bring myself to share that risk with my kids tho. Just a little too germaphobic. *sigh*

  16. Tonya

    I think the prep, anticipation as you wait for the timer to ding and decorating are just as fun as the licking the batter.

    Katie is lovely and her little apron is priceless.

  17. Hutch

    I like to think all the batter and raw cookie dough I ate as a child is what helped build my immune system. There's so much to enjoy about baking though, and the finished product is just as good as the salmonella filled unbaked deliciousness.

  18. Yuliya

    Bwahaa haaa!

  19. Yuliya

    Back in mother Russia I used to go to the hen-house in the morning, grab an egg, poke a hole at the top and gulp it down…one guess as to whether I plan on allowing Aliza to do the same…yeah exactly
    Adorable pictures and such a cute kiddo!

  20. Megan-Best of Fates

    SO adorable! I refer, of course, to the liners, your daughter, the sprinkles and your story.

  21. kris

    I so let my daughters lick the beaters.

    I so do.

    It's the best part of making cupcakes.

  22. Nichole

    That's the hardest part of not letting them have sugar. I loved baking with my mother and want Katie to know that same joy. I always let her have one of whatever we bake that day and one the next. The rest disappear. Either in my belly or to work with Craig.

  23. tulpen

    My mother would let us lick the beaters too…and the bowl even.

    And I let my kids do it too… It really is the best part.

  24. ksluiter

    I let Eddie lick beaters…and I don't even use pasteurized eggs because I get them straight from the farm. oops!

    but look at her face and her cute apron…I don't think that sweet girl is missing ANY joy!

  25. I can remember licking the bowl too. But just like you, Tracy and I dont let our kids do that. Getting sick is not worth it. That being said…That is a great memory of you and your mom and I know your daughter will share that too

  26. Nancy C

    I try to trick Owen by letting him lick frosting or stealing a few stray chocolate chips. I too, cherish baking with him. Just as my brother and I baked with my mom.

  27. Melinda

    I have the same memories and I too don't let the kids lick the spoons because of the raw eggs. How did we all survive that yet today they scare us into banning that from the kids. They have to settle for the frosting spoon unfortunately.

  28. I loved those days! My oldest loves licking frosting more than anything else!

  29. A. B. Keuser

    So adorable, and the cupcakes look delish!

  30. I love baking with my girls, it's just something mothers do, isn't it? Her apron is adorable and I love her concentration decorating the cupcake.
    My kids lick the batter. With three around, it's almost impossible to keep someone from getting a finger in the bowl. I have been using egg replacer. The powdered kind, not the fake egg in the refrigerated section. Some of those have egg in them. Since the eggs are just for binding and not taste in the baking, it makes no difference that I can tell. Except no Salmonella risk.

  31. Peggy

    Sharing the beaters never gets old. My youngest was helping me make cupcakes for dessert last weekend, as we were having all 3 kids and their kids over for dinner. As soon as I was done with the batter, we both dove for the beaters, and it was like she was 3 again, and not 23.

    I miss the days of baking with my girls.

  32. Leighann

    What wonderful memories you're making! I don't even know what a woopie pie is :(

  33. CDG

    Felix is a measure and stir kind of guy. He helps all the time. He also loves lining the muffin tins. When you finally come to play, they can bake us cupcakes!

    I haven't let him lick a spoon yet, but the day is coming when I'll have to share…

  34. Rachel

    I have VERY fond memories of baking with my mom and she ALWAYS let me lick the spatula! Fabulous pictures!!!
    PS- I bought a heart shaped whoppie pie tray for Valentine's Day!

  35. Batter never tastes as good as it does fresh off of a batter. :)

    My MIL makes her homemade ice cream with raw eggs!!

  36. err, fresh off of a beater, I mean. :)

  37. Sherri

    I SO want a cupcake now….or just to bake with that adorable little girl and have her line up my cupcake liners! She's so happy, and what fun for you two.

    I know what you mean about the batter! And don't even get me started on cookie dough. I still eat it myself, but I sneak it when the kids aren't looking! But I have given them a small taste here and there….

  38. Mrs4444

    Awww….what a sweet post. (in more ways than one!)

  39. Oh girl!! Did you grow up in my house…because this is how my mama was too!!! That is crazy! THere were always tons of yummy deliciousness everywhere in our house…I don't know how we all didn't weigh 400lbs growing up! We LOVED to lick the bowl, beaters, and spatulas. This is such a great memory and your post made them all flood back to me!!! I too worry now about letting the kids lick the bowls…sometimes there are SO many worries that I wonder how we survived as kids. Your daughter is so cute in her little apron!!!

  40. Kristi

    Nichole, this is such a sweet post. My mom has always been an avid baker and those memories we made baking with her as young children will stay with me until the day I die. Though we live thousands of miles apart, my mom and I are still very close. We really don't do all that much baking when we're together. I've stepped aside so my children – her grandchildren – can make those memories with her. I've enough of my own. :)

    And now I'm off to call my mom to tell her I love her… Thank you for this.

  41. ~*Jess*~

    Precious. I look forward to the day when Ava truly gets excited about baking with me :)

  42. lyndsey

    I miss that little girl! Love the pictures to keep my updated! Maybe she and Max could have a baking date?

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