Matt, director of Atlanta’s The Insight Program, leaned even closer into the parents’ circle. Why, he asked, do all the kids say “I love you” over and over again?
Yes, it sounds good. Yes, it helps bonding. But it’s also therapeutic. Any habit – or in this case, truth – takes about 100 times of practice before it starts to stick. To know you are lovable, that you are valuable, that you are cherished – by people beyond, say, your mom - you need to hear it more than 100 times.
So all those I-love-yous, done with a “dude” and back slapping with the boys; high pitched squeals from the girls, reinforce a fledgling core of hope desperately needed by those who have stumbled in life. The result, when done right, can be amazing.
A spiritual cookie, of sorts.
So the premise of Baked With Love is simple. We deserve basic human compassion, regardless of our circumstances. But those who are in shelters, missions, rehab centers, nursing homes may be missing that daily reinforcement of love. So we call out to bakers of all stripes living anywhere in this great nation to commit to the charity of their choice and schedule a regular “drop-off” of handmade goodies.
Depending on the need, the goodies can be cakes, cupcakes, cookies or even baked “dog bones” for animal shelters. They can be as complex or as simple as your time allows. Meaning if you only have time to make slice-and-bake cookies, decorated with sprinkles by your 9-year-old, that’s what you do.
The most important part: You include a note that says, “We love you.” Every time. (Although I hope to develop sticker templates on this site with those words printed that we could put on cookie sacks or cupcake paper cups.) But homemade is always best. Please click on “What You Can Do” for more information.
And – please – once you pick your charity, let me know – and we will link to it. We hope to have a map to show our influence – to show how one baker, helping one cause, can do a world of good.