Sunday, November 28, 2010

Hosting a cookie exchange....

I am excited tonight to participate in The NewlyWoodward's Dare to Eat Cookie's party and to share with you How we Host a Cookie Exchange! Every December for the last 9yrs some friends and neighbors come together for a Cookie Exchange party.  This is one of my favorite Holiday time savers. We bake one kind of cookie, but go home with possibly 15 different kinds!

(sorry it is blurry, you can see a better photo's here)

Here a few of our tips....

1. Choose the date and time of your party. We meet in the morning, after dropping the kids off at school.  My sister-in-law hosts her part on a Saturday afternoon. The key is to plan know how our holiday's schedules fill quickly.

2. Plan your guest list and send out invitations about 3 weeks prior to your party. This year I used Evite and finding it works well to RSVP for the party and the type of cookie each guest will bring.

3. Have your guest RSVP the type of cookie they are bringing. This makes sure you don't end up with 10 people bringing Chocolate Chip Cookies. We don't limit it to only cookies. We enjoy having cookie bars, small loaf of bread and homemade candies!

4. Have your guest bring a copies of the recipe for each guest. (This can be a photo copy of the recipe)

5. We have each guest bring 6 dozen cookies. If I had to bake 15 dozen cookies, I don't think I would want to attend! We then wait to see how many guests arrive and that determines how many of each type of cookie you will get. For example if there is 15 guests, each guest chooses 4 of each cookies. 72 cookies divided by 15 guest equal 4.8 cookies.

6. What happens to the 0.8 cookie's left? We packaged them and donated them to a family in need. Usually someone knows someone who could benefit from a little Holiday Cheer. Last year they went to a family who lost their home in a fire.

7. Have your guest bring a tin, box, bag, or basket to take their cookies home in.

8. Plan a light menu. Since we meet in the morning I usually have fruit, coffee cake, and some cookies. I have wonderful friends and they usually bring a side dish for us to enjoy. It doesn't hurt that we love to eat! We always have coffee, hot tea and cold drinks.

9. Sit back and enjoy a fun filled morning not focusing on the Holiday stress, but celebrating great friendships!

10. Last year we hosted a baby shower with the cookie exchange. Each guest brought one baby item and all the items were donated to a shelter for pregnant mothers.

In August we start trying new recipes to see which cookie we will make for the party. What a great excuse to bake and eat cookies! So far the kids are loving Sugar Cookie Pops (from Christmas with Southern Living 2007).....

1/2 Cup butter softened
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup powdered sugar
2 Large Eggs
3/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cream of tartar
Colored sugars, sparkling sugars,
and multicolored jimmies
4" white craft sticks

Beat butter and shortening at medium speed with an electric mixer until fluffy; add sugars, beating well. Add eggs, oil and vanilla, beating until blended.

Combine flour and next 3 ingredients; add to butter mixture, blending well; cover and chill dough 2 hours or overnight.
Shape dough into 1 1/2" balls. Roll each ball in colored sugar or jimmies in individual bowls, pressing gently, if necessary, to coat balls. Place 2" apart on an ungreased baking sheets. Insert craft sticks about 1" into each cookie to resemble a lollipop.

Bake at 350 degrees for 10-11 minutes or until set. Let cool 2 minutes on baking sheets; remove cookie pops to wire racks to cool completely.

Do you host a Cookie Exchange? We would love to know how you might do things different! If you host one for the first time,  have fun and let us know how it goes! And if you need a new cookie recipe, hop over to the NewlyWoodward's for their Dare to Eat Cookie party to find that perfect cookie recipe!


Nita {ModVintageLife} said...

I'm suppose to go to a cookie exchange in a couple of weeks and have no idea what cookies I'll make or take. I haven't baked a cookie in 15 years at least. I don't have a special cookie recipe...I guess I'll have to look through your blog for ideas.

Tammy @BeatriceBanks said...

I love cookie exchanges! After reading this post, I'm going to sneak into the kitchen and grab another sugar cookie from the batch we made this week. It's addictive!

Jen@Notes From the Heartland said...

Okay, so now I want to add Cookie Exchange to my list of holiday-doings. ;-) Sounds SO fun!! Your cookie pops are adorable!!

Kansas Amy said...

I am getting ready for my cookie exchange as well.. It's just SO much fun!!

dee dee said...

My neighbors have done this before, but not for several years now! I've always enjoyed being part of a fun exchange!
Dee Dee

Beth @ Dirty Laundry said...

The only difference at our cookie exchange is we let guests know how many cookies to bake ahead of time (based on number of people coming--we try to keep it at 4-6 cookies per guest) and each person brings the cookies pre-wrapped. Some people get very creative with this, bringing them in pretty bags, chinese takeout containers or even pretty plates (bought the year before at half price, of course!)although zipped up in a Ziploc is fine too! Your lollipop cookies look so pretty!

Kim @ NewlyWoodwards said...

My favorite part - the fact that you donate some of them. That's the real reason for the season.

I'm hosting my first cookie exchange this year. But, I'm actually "hosting" it at work over the lunch hour, so it's quick and simple. But, I think it will still be lots of fun.

Thanks for linking up this week. This is such a great post for planning.

*claire* said...

i love those! what a great gift idea!

Related Posts with Thumbnails
Blog Design by Sweet Simplicity