I'm that lady. The one that hands out chocolate chip cookies to neighbors, co-workers, contractors. I brought scones to our first house inspection (and was rebuffed by the inspector, who didn't like to work on a full stomach.) I delivered bags of chocolate cookies to all of our neighbors the week before our wedding to soften the blow of the music that would be blasting from our backyard on the evening of our nuptials. I'm not proud, but I even brought in cookies the morning of one of the partner meetings in my former office, not to jockey for a raise, but to hopefully curb the tongue lashing I expected for not meeting my hours for the year (I think it worked). This week we're having portions of the exterior of our house painted. (There's a whole other post coming about Boris' and my reluctance to delegate any work on our house - so this is kind of a big deal.) This morning I made cookies. I'm just waiting for the painters to get back from lunch to deliver the goods.
I'm not telling you this as a humble brag or to pat myself on the back. It's more of a tip for those of us that might not be the best at expressing our gratitude, fondness, love, insert whatever other positive emotion, in words. I'm not great at paying compliments or giving praise - but I'm a pretty good baker. And even if you're not great at baking, there are a million and two cupcake shops around that would be happy to do the heavy lifting for you. I honestly used to fell badly about my inability to express happy sentiments in spoken words, but now I just bake muffins. Also, make no mistake, when I hand over these cookies today, my hands will be shaking a bit, my stomach will be all twisted up, BUT I won't have to do much talking and our painters will still feel appreciated (and maybe do an extra great job on our house).
If you're inspired to make a batch yourself, I use Martha Stewart's recipe. Martha is not afraid of vanilla or salt and it makes for a really richly flavored cookie. I do find they spread a lot, so if you have time, you might want to chill the dough for 30 minutes or so, and increase your oven temp to 375, but that's purely for aesthetics.