Permanently bored people are a bit terrifying. Not, as many may fear, because they might cause trouble of some sort. But because someone, somewhere along the line, has convinced them they need to be constantly amused, preferably by external forces, and can’t do things for themselves! Perhaps this Egg Free Butter Biscuit recipe will help spark some creativity with your kids.
Being bored, long term, is pretty much the opposite of being creative.
Some modest experience of boredom can, however, be useful in stimulating the desire to do something more productive, so don’t panic about the occasional “I’m bored” wails from your children – it might give you just the excuse you need to introduce them to something they haven’t tried before!
So, how do we stop people being bored and convince them they’re capable of engaging themselves with something, often for hours at a time (and not necessarily involving a digital device of any kind)?
Probably not by introducing creativity classes in school! Knowing the effect school classes often have, this should be the quickest route known to humanity of convincing almost everyone that they aren’t good at creativity (can you imagine National Standards testing for creativity!).
We might have more luck if we foster non-boredom (ie creativity) at home, so it soaks in without anyone noticing.
That does not mean to say that if mum is an expert knitter it will automatically rub off on the kids. But what it will do is let the kids know that making their own stuff is perfectly possible – even their mum can do it, for goodness sake!
Often the absorption of information isn’t immediately obvious at the time, much to the despair of many parents.
But it is amusing to see how often almost-adult offspring come home sheepishly asking how to do something they’ve seen family members doing in the past (“hey mum, how do you make a scarf/bottle peaches/do calligraphy?” or “Dad, how do you do wallpapering/get pills into a cat/set up a vege garden?”).
The very word ‘creativity’ can be daunting, suggesting enormous talents that many of us fear we don’t have.
Creativity must surely involve writing plays, creating documentary films or designing furniture from scratch, mustn’t it? Well, in some cases, that’s how it’s expressed. But there are plenty of every-day examples that are within anyone’s grasp, if they’re given some basic training.
Giving the chance to try things doesn’t need to be time-consuming and expensive either (OK, sometimes it can be, but it doesn’t have to be). Start with the readily available and see where it takes your family members – use the garden, the garage, the kitchen, and the talents of friends and family.
Because food is dear to almost everyone’s heart, creativity can often start in the kitchen.
Everyone likes to be able to create something that makes other people say, “yum – can I have another one?”
Starting from very basic, foolproof recipes, kids can quickly move on to personalised creations and special menus of their own. If that’s not creativity in its best sense, what is?
If you’d like to try some basic recipes with your children, here’s one to start with. The Basic Butter Biscuit recipe can be modified in 1,000’s of ways. Give your kid’s a bunch of different cutting and decorating tools, and ingredients, and see what develops.
Egg Free Easy Butter Biscuits
Egg Free Easy Butter Biscuits
- 175 g butter
- 125 g sugar
- 225 g flour
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla essence
- Pinch of salt
In a large bowl cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Add the vanilla essence and salt, and mix.
Sift the flour, add to the creamed butter and sugar, and mix with a wooden spoon, util well combined.
Turn out the mixture on to a bench. Lightly knead together the crumbly mixture, until a soft dough forms.
Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 180°C, and prepare a baking tray with butter, spray oil or a dusting of flour.
Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface, and roll out to a uniform consistency, about 1cm thick.
Cut dough into shapes, place on baking tray, and bake at 180°C for 20 to 25 minutes, until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.
Yep, that’s the bones. Everything else is a matter of flavourings, shapes and interesting coatings.
Obviously as is, this is really boring!
But that’s where the creativity comes in: you might like to add lemon rind, dip one surface of the biscuits in sugar before baking (always fun), add cocoa powder, add spices, cut them into interesting shapes, pipe on icing sugar, apply assorted decorations…
I don’t want to give you too many ideas at this point, as that just stifles the creativity. So go on, just try things! And if the Egg Free Easy Butter Biscuits recipe gets the creative juices flowing, check out some of our other Baking ideas.