Bats In The Belfry, Cookies In The Kitchen

Sometimes inspiration comes from the most unlikely of places or events. A few days ago in the middle of the night my wife and I woke up to some strange sounds over our heads and thought “that can’t be good!” We called the exterminator the next morning and learned that we have bats in the belfry! Ok, we don’t actually have a bell tower, but we do have an attic and that’s where they decided to take up residence.

I don’t know about you, but I am not one who wants to be a landlord to bats, so we need to have a process done to remediate the situation. This involves having all the exposed gaps where bats might find a way in sealed, the mess left behind vacuumed and then the whole area sanitized. As the process was explained to us, we learned that bats are under protected status because they provide substantial natural pest control by eating thousands of bugs each night, so they must be removed without harming them.

They do this by temporarily filling in the spaces where they have been entering and exiting with a cone type object that has a one way door that the bats can squeeze out of, but can’t come back in through from the other side. After they are gone, the cones are removed and the spaces are permanently sealed. That’s perfectly fine with me – I mean the bats no harm, I simply don’t want them living in my house!

That’s when the inspiration for this week’s blog came to me – I decided to make sugar cookies in the shape of bats! Why not throw a bit of humor and whimsy at the situation? It is a little more than a week and a half before the remediation process is scheduled to begin – at least I can grab a cookie and smile a bit while trying to ignore the slightly unnerving fact that the bats are still up there for now!

We love to make sugar cookies in our family. It started when we were kids and my mom would make them for Christmas and if we were lucky, just for fun at random times during the year. Through the years we’ve branched out into making them for several other holidays as well. We have also decorated them in many different ways, from simple sugar or sprinkles on top, to dying the dough different colors to decorating them with icing.

The icing tradition began with my oldest niece’s first birthday party when my mom and I made icing painted Mickey Mouse cookies displayed on a tray with a border of pastel colored star cookies. That same niece just celebrated her own daughter’s first birthday and her grandma, my sister, passed the painted cookie tradition on to a new generation with cookies for the party. Check out the picture of the llama and cactus cookies in the gallery below. My sister really upped her game and outdid herself with that batch – our mom would be proud!

As you can see, I really meant it when I said we love to make sugar cookies with all kinds of different decorating methods! One interesting method I didn’t mention earlier was how we did the Rutgers cookies in the picture above. They weren’t iced, instead we used an egg yolk wash that we dyed red and brushed on before baking – the black outline was added with food coloring markers after they cooled. This method is much faster than individually frosting the cookies and gives them a nice shine.

I decided to decorate the bat cookies in 4 different ways – after all, I was trying to keep my mind off of my visitors in the attic! I made some iced, some with sprinkles, some with the egg yolk wash and some with cinnamon and sugar on top. The cinnamon and sugar was something my mom used to do occasionally when we were kids and it was always so good.

It has certainly been an interesting and chaotic week dealing with the bats in the attic and making sugar cookies decorated 4 different ways. It’s a good thing we didn’t have anything else going on to make the week even more crazy… Oh wait, I forgot to mention that we also brought home a new puppy this week!

Hopefully by the time I write again, the bats will have moved out and the new puppy will be sleeping better through the night. Until then, I hope you have a great weekend!

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