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Anytime I happen to view a picture of cookies on a blog with little ones peering over my shoulder, I know I’ll be baking soon.  This morning, it took just a five second view of these cookies on the Whole Life Nutrition Kitchen blog and the kids were begging to make them.  With our homemade applesauce frozen in the freezer and no jam, I had to think quickly and make that grocery trip I’d been putting off this morning.

These Buckwheat Pecan Thumbprint Cookies are gluten free, vegan, and refined sugar free – an overall excellent cookie that made a great health(ier) treat.  I had never baked thumbprint cookies before and made a tiny blunder:  I filled the thumbprint indentation with a little too much jam (the kids chose raspberry).  As they were baking, some of the jam overflowed onto the cookie sheet.  But, no worse for the wear were these cookies.  They were still delicious…very light and fluffy with a nice crumb – not too sweet – and you could never tell there was applesauce in them.

The best part was watching the kids use their thumbs to make the little indentations.  And they were little! I had to make them bigger with my thumb.  But, they sure did enjoy it.  Anything that involves dough is a kid-pleaser in our house.

Speaking of dough, I have given up all the canned commercial Play Doh in our house and transitioned to homemade dough.  Using this recipe (top recipe called PLAYDOH RECIPE THAT WILL LAST FOR 3 – 4 MONTHS), we made two batches of three different colors and scents of “play dough” this week.  Had I known how easy it was to make I would have done it years ago.  The kids love the scents (lavender and lemon essential oils) and ask to play every day.  While I kept just a few of our plastic play dough tools (most will be either sold at an upcoming yard sale or donated), I added some wooden dough rolling pins and stampers to the mix.  I decided to simplify the dough tools for a couple reasons.  I found that we had so many plastic tools – from “cookie” cutters to stamps to vehicle accessories – that the kids fought more over the tools than spent time creating with the dough. (I’m also not fond of anything plastic, so this was a good excuse to add a few beautiful wooden tools to the mix.)  Now they have 1/10 of the tools (less clutter to overwhelm them) and already seem to be happier and much more creative.

Now, my question to you…if you make homemade play dough, what is your favorite essential oil to scent it?