These Pumpkin Sugar Cookies are absolutely amazing! Deliciously soft and full of pumpkin fall flavor! Bound to become a family favorite!
This week marked the five year anniversary of Elliot’s death.
What is so weird/tricky/frustrating/maddening about grief is that you don’t really know how or when it will strike. Four years ago when we should have been celebrating Elliot’s first birthday, everyone was bracing for us to struggle through September 9th, the first anniversary of his death. But it was September 1st, when we should have been taking pictures of him shoving cake in his mouth that really floored me.
And this year while I was really anticipating Elliot’s birthday to be rough, it was the anniversary of his death that was hard.
I have never really talked about his death publicly. Probably because we had to make the unbearable decision to take him off life support, and I know that that is controversial. We did so with a lot of counsel from his doctors. And when I say counsel, I mean I asked them what they would do if it was their own child and watched their eyes fill with tears at the mere thought. They made it very clear to us that our options were very limited, and were so kind in helping us come to a decision.
I will never forget watching Gavin say goodbye to Elliot . . . though he didn’t entirely understand what that meant.
I will never forget Elliot squeezing my finger and second guessing myself and having his nurses reassure me that this was common in patients with only lower brain functioning.
And I will never forget Nathan and I promising Elliot that we would never look at this life as a tragedy. So many people have asked me how I possibly made it through losing a child, and honestly the answer to that question is a work in progress. But what I come back to over and over and over is that moment when I was holding him and he was taking his last breaths and he was all unhooked from machines and I was promising him that I would not let his death be a black mark on my life.
Just before school started this fall, and I promise this relates, Quinn drew a picture of me with something giant. I asked her what it was and she said it was me . . . sad because I missed her because she was at school and with a giant sandwich.
She gets me. I’m an emotional eater. Lol!
So . . . . I made these cookies on the anniversary of Elliot’s death this year. The foundation of these cookies are these sugar cookies that I made 7.2 million times while my mom was dying. They are my ultimate comfort food. Scratch that. The cookie dough for these cookies is my ultimate comfort food.
I had had a conversation with Cathy just a few days before making these cookies and she mentioned these cookies, and the ratio she used of pumpkin and eggs to make the perfect cookie. She was dead on! I used it for these cookies and it resulted in what might be the best damn cookie I’ve ever eaten. I’m not kidding.
So I’m not going to say that these cookies fixed the anniversary of Elliot’s death. But if I’m being 100% honest, they totally did make it a little easier.
- 1 1/2 cups sugar + more for rolling
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 14 TBSPS butter (1 3/4 stick) at room temperature
- 2 tsps vanilla extract
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 cup 100% pure pumpkin puree
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.
- With your mixer on medium, mix together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Mix in the egg yolk, then vanilla, then pumpkin until well combined.
- Slowly mix in the flour mixture until well combined, with your mixer set to low. Scrape down the paddle and the sides of the bowl as necessary.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and refrigerate the cookie dough for 20 minutes.
- Roll the dough into one inch sized balls. Roll in sugar. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet or silicon mat and press down slightly. Space the cookies about two inches apart.
- Bake for 10 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through the baking. (I baked mine in three batches)
- Let cool on the pan for about two minutes before moving to a cooling rack to cool completely.
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