Amy Rees Anderson

“That’s the way the cookie crumbles”

Growing up in a family of ten kids led to some awesome memories.  One memory in particular that I thought about today was the following story:

We were sitting around our massive dinner table (it took a huge table to hold all 12 of us!).  We were preparing to sing Happy Birthday to one of the kids in the family.  It was always a mad scramble just before a birthday celebration at our house to come up with a last minute gift.  We didn’t really get a regular allowance at our house so as kids we typically had no money to buy one another birthday presents.  One sibling would grab a banana and throw it in a brown paper bag for every person’s birthday and give what came to be loving known as the “birthday banana”.  It was cute how they always thought what was in their brown bag would come a huge surprise for whoever was opening it for their present.  One birthday I ran around the house trying to find something I could wrap up and give away to the person celebrating their birthday.  I had a large cookie I had been given as a handout or something earlier in the day so I took my cookie and lovingly wrapped it in a dishtowel since I couldn’t find any wrapping paper to use.  I carefully carried my special cookie wrapped in its dishtowel to the kitchen table to wait to present it to the lucky birthday child.  As we all sat there at the table singing Happy Birthday a cup was knocked over on the table and liquid ran everywhere. Eager to stop the liquid from spreading everywhere my sibling yanked the dishtowel from my hands, not realizing it contained my precious cookie, causing the cookie to go flying across the room into the wall where it crumbled into little pieces on impact.  Shock and horror was my reaction.  My wonderful birthday gift had been destroyed!  Before I could even let the first tear fall from my eyes one of my older siblings laughing yelled “Well…That’s the way the cookie crumbles…” and everyone began to laugh, including me.  Tears and sadness quickly turned to laughter and all of us kids sat around the table laughing like crazy.  It was a great moment and a memory I will never forget.  Then we all ate birthday cake and had a great night.

The reason I won’t forget it was that moment taught a great life lesson to me.  When things go wrong in life, as they are always bound to do, we have two choices – we can cry about it and fall apart, or we can yell out loud “Well….that’s the way the cookie crumbles….”and then have a good laugh about it.  However we choose the react to the situation it won’t change that our cookie crumbled.  It hit the wall and it crumbled and there is no changing that now.  So laugh about it, and then go eat some birthday cake and have a great night…then move forward toward the next better and brighter day.  And cherish the memories along the way.

Have a great day everyone!

~Amy

1 Comment

  • Celeste says:

    This is a great story. As 1 of 10 kids also, I totally relate to your story. We’ve had kids wrap up everything you can think of as presents for the respective sibling because we also didn’t have an allowance. Makes me miss my wonderful family.

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