In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, soda, salt, and nutmeg.
In a large mixing bowl, beat shortening 30 seconds. Add the 2 cups sugar and beat until fluffy. Add eggs, vanilla, and lemon extract, if you like; beat well.
Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately to shortening mixture, beating until mixed. Divide in half. Cover; chill at least 3 hours for easy handling.
For the small cookies, roll dough 3/8-inch thick on a lightly floured surface and cut into desired shapes with a 2-inch cutter. For the large cookies, roll dough 1/2-inch thick. Cut into desired shapes using a 3-inch cutter.
Place cookies 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Sprinkle with sugar, if you like. Bake in 375 degree F oven 8 to 10 minutes for small cookies or 10 to 12 minutes for large cookies. Remove; cool on a wire rack. Mix frosting and color, if you like. Frost and decorate as desired. Makes 48 small or 24 large cookies.
For a cookie on a stick, tuck a lollipop stick or craft stick under the center of the cookie. Press stick into dough slightly. Bake cookies as directed.