One of the things I love most about cooking is that it is a perfectly legitimate excuse to make a mess. I can scatter whole wheat flour across the counter while making pancakes (which I often do) or get cinnamon caked under my fingernails when sprinkling the spice over the top of some muffins, and that's okay! Making a mess is fun, and, in the right circumstances and with the proper cleaning follow-up, quite healthy. Don't believe me? Try taking a hike during the spring or fall -- in the midst of some kind of precipitation is ideal -- and don't try to stay clean or dry, but rather embrace getting your jeans caked in mud up to the knee. It's a wonderful game! So enjoy the mud, and enjoy the lovely mess that often goes hand in hand with culinary creation.

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