When I was an editor at Real Simple a few years ago, and then later at Cookie, I won the lottery. The working mom’s lottery. After years of fist-pounding and squeaky-wheeling, I was granted a four-day work week. Not four days in the office, then one working from home. That fifth day — Wednesday, then later Friday — was off. Mine. I could drop off and pick up the girls from school. I could go to the dry-cleaner. I could go to Trader Joe’s during off hours!
But best of all, I could host playdates.
I could’ve invited kids over on Saturdays or Sundays, of course, but since the family was together so rarely during the week, we generally tried our hardest to place a moratorium on structured weekend plans. As a result, I met their classmates at drop-off and I saw them at birthday parties, but I was rarely able to witness how my daughters interacted, one-on-one, with their pals. And it killed me. I would say on my personal working mom’s guilt-o-meter* it was one of the things that registered the highest. And so on those Fridays off, I tried to schedule playdates as often as I could. And as often as I could on those playdates, I tried my hardest to be Fun Mom. Which of course, meant homemade cookies. (Sorry, Mme. Secretary of State.)
*I’ll show you mine if you show me yours…?
Working Mom M&M Cookies
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups of chocolate chips or M&Ms or both
Preheat oven to 375° F.
Combine flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chocolate, reserving a little pile of M&Ms for each kid helping. Drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto ungreased baking sheets. Have the kids push their M&Ms into rounds.
Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.