Butterfly Cookies -- Cookies and Cards

There is a bit of a pencil mutiny at my house this week. It started with one of the brightly patterned school pencils. My 5 year old told me that something was wrong with it and he didn't want to tell me what it was. I automatically assumed that he had A) jammed it into some unknown crevice in our house just to see if it would fit and now couldn't get it out or B) it had magically written itself all over our newly painted white walls. Neither option was desirable.

After chasing him around the house and under the kitchen table, I discovered that a short piece of the graphite core had broken and come out. Trying to stay calm under the pressure, we solved the immediate crisis with a pencil sharpener, only for that wily pencil to turn right around and break off another chunk of itself. I'm a pretty determined person, and I don't like to lose. So I sharpened it again. And again. And again. And then I threw it in the garbage while my child wasn't looking.

But then-- and here's where things get weird -- I tried to sharpen the other pencils in our house. Apparently, they had all stayed up really late last night carousing with the crayons and the mechanical pencils and decided that they were going to go on strike until they got equal treatment. (Which, in all honesty, is not likely to happen given the way they carelessly lose themselves in the school drawer and refuse to show up at school time.)

I even tried sharpening the colored pencils. The red ones were siding with the school pencils while the blue one remained neutral. I tried showing them the pencil that ended up in the trash, but that didn't seem to affect them. It was like they were actually CHOOSING to be emotionless, inanimate objects with no power to control their own future. So I moved the mechanical pencils into the kitchen and left the wooden pencils alone in the school drawer to contemplate the consequences of their actions.

Which leads me to this question -- Do pencils go bad? Not just naughty, but is there anything that makes the graphite core weak and prone to break? Does it happen over time or with crazy humidity? Or is it just something they are born with and I need to learn to love them for who they are? Because I can do that. I'm a crazy lover. I crazy love lots of things. Like my kids, cookie cutters, a house with a backyard....these butterfly cookies....

Its the first Friday of the month, which means I get to shamelessly copy one of my cousin Pam's fantastic card designs again. I actually LOVE creating a cookie from her cards because it gets me out of my groove and I try something new nearly every time. Like these blue inlays for the butterfly..

1. First, I traced the cookie cutter I was going to use on a piece of paper and randomly scrawled a design on it and hoped it would somehow resemble the fun pattern on my cousin's card.
2. I placed that piece of paper under some wax paper and piped on top of it. I know some people like to tape their wax paper down and make multiple copies of the item to be piped over. I would do that if I wasn't lazy.  Instead, I just slide my pattern to a new spot and pipe over the top again and again. I made a ton of extras, but as it turns out, these guys were pretty sturdy.
3. Let your transfers dry for AT LEAST 12 hours. 24-48 hours is even better. You can bake some cookies while you are waiting. (<---- This is actually a good idea, because you are going to need some cookies to finish the process.)
4. Outline and flood the cookies all at the same time. Take care to get near the edges of the cookie, but don't go all the way to the edge. You don't want the green to show under the blue inlays.

 5. If you want, add some polka dots to the wet icing. 
6. Gently remove the blue wing inlays from the wax paper. I cut the wax paper from between each set of wings first so that I am only working with one piece at a time. Then, I use a very thin knife to separate the two.
7. Carefully place it on one side of the butterfly and press lightly so the green icing and blue wings are nearly the same height on the cookie. (If this doesn't make sense -- just throw that blue wing thing on the cookie and call it good. It will probably look the same.)
8. Add the other wing.
9. (Not pictured ) Look at your cookie and think about how amazing you are. (Not that *I* do this step.) (Often.)

Pam is turning one of my cookies into a card. You should go check it out HERE....if you feel like it.

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