Friends bake & share Christmas cookies with those in need

Abby Zelinski, with the help of her mom and friends, baked, decorated and delivered 200 cookies last weekend to people in need. Friends who helped include: Emma Robinson, Kaia Haley, Sami Whitcomb, Katie Tan, Jordan Warren, Gwynna Simmons, Charlotte Gardner, Pauline Pons, Kylie Goelkel, Addison Goelkel, Reagan Mckinley, Emily Holick and Elle Hodges.

Abby Zelinski,11, and her friends have been making homemade, decorated Christmas cookies to give to homeless people for the past six years. This year was a little different because they handed out the cookies themselves.

A dozen friends baked and decorated some 200 cookies at the Zelinski’s home in River Place on Saturday. They delivered them the next day, Dec. 8, under I-35 between 7th Street and 8th Street.

“For the past five years, we have delivered the cookies to Mobile Loaves & Fishes for them to pass out on their evening truck deliveries,” said Allison Zelinski, Abby’s mom. “This year I felt like the girls were old enough to actually pass the cookies out in person, we choose to attend Church Under the Bridge, which is an organized church service downtown for the homeless.”

The event made an impact on the girls as their goal was to do something good for the homeless population in Austin.

“It was a little scary at first, but we started giving out the cookies and it made the homeless happy and they said thank you,” Abby said. “We handed out all the cookies and they wanted more and I told them next year we will bring more.”

She added that this may be the only gift or treat they get for Christmas “and it may bring them joy and happiness and hope. I know it made them feel happy because they smiled, and we were happy too!”

Allison knows her daughter and friends not only have fun doing this but are making an impact on people less fortunate. 

“This is an amazing group of young ladies,” Allison said. “They have a heart for making a difference and serving others, which makes it special for everyone involved.”