For as long as I can remember, Butter Cookies have been in my mother's baking arsenal.
When I was little, I would use any and all cookie cutters on them. We would make buffalo shaped cookies whenever the Huskers would play Colorado (you know, so we could take a bite of the buffalo when Nebraska would score), pumpkins at Halloween, hearts on Valentine's Day, etc. (I know, I know. We're really original with shapes and their corresponding holidays).
The cookies are simple, yet delicious. I mean, how can you go wrong with butter, sugar, and vanilla mixed together, then baked and topped with buttercream frosting?
Each time we prepared to bake these tasty gems, I would watch my mom pull out the very worn and very loved recipe card that had been written out decades before. My mother got the recipe from her mother who would make them all the time, and my grandmother got the recipe from her friend Velma who lived next door to her in the late 50s/early 60s in Ottumwa, Iowa.
Apparently, my grandma, Georgia, and Velma would go over to each other's houses in the mornings to sip coffee and watch the kids play. They would also lug their irons, ironing boards, and clothes that needed to be ironed to each other's house so they could talk while they ironed. I mean, how cute is that? And in my head, they both wore adorable dresses and pearl necklaces while doing all of those things.
Fast forward a few decades to one night a few months ago when my mom called me to say that she had looked up Velma's information and found out that she still lives near Ottumwa. My mom decided to call Velma to catch up and tell her how much we have loved baking her cookies over all of these years, and they ended up talking for a little over 30 minutes. They've since corresponded via regular mail and phone calls a few times.
Call me over sentimental and over dramatic, but I love thinking about how many people have enjoyed baking and eating those cookies over the years all because of Velma.
According to my mom, Velma got the recipe from her mother, but beyond that we don't know the origins. Seriously, though. I'm guessing that when Velma wrote down the recipe for my grandmother, she wasn't thinking how 50 years from then Georgia's granddaughter would be making them for her friends in a completely different state.
So, thank you, Velma. Your cookies have received much praise and gained many admirers.