This started as a recipe that my mother cut from a home magazine when I was a child. The original was lost long ago, and the hand copied 3x5 card had a habit of disappearing just before Christmas, leading to frantic phone calls looking for the recipe. Thankfully I have had a copy stored away electronically since 1978.
I have tweaked it a bit over the years and it makes nice moist cookies that remain soft for several weeks on a Christmas tree. Of course that is only if your family has more willpower than mine...
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Mix the following:
Cream the following:
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup butter
3 tsp vanilla
Mix the dry ingredients in with the creamed until stiff.
Spread on a lightly floured cookie sheet and cut to shape. Remove excess dough.
Cook for 6 min at 400 degrees F, for small cookies around 1".
Cook for 13 min at 400 degrees F, for large gingerbread men, etc..