Friday, December 21, 2012

Grandma's Third Annual Christmas Cookie Baking Party!

Santa cookie jars, one per family, wait patiently to be filled
and taken home for Christmas!

Even though everything, including the tree, goes up the day after Thanksgiving, it never really feels like Christmas around here until I host Grandma's Annual Cookie Baking Party! It's for my daughters and grandkids only...daddies stay home, eagerly waiting to see what tasty stuff returns by the dozen later on in the evening. Traditionally we meet on a Friday at 5 PM, enjoy a light dinner, and then bake our little hearts out amid a level of fun and laughter exclusive to the close company and this beloved season of the year.

It helps to be a veteran of two previous parties. Each one brings improvements based not only on experience, but on increasing abilities of the three oldest grandchildren who participate. For example, I decided after last year to pre-bake the sugar cookies that we'll decorate. Kids love to roll and cut the dough, but waiting for each sheet to bake and cool doesn't work! This year they jumped right into the best part, knowing exactly where to put the frosting and sprinkles......

It's grandma's house! That means sprinkle-eating is not only allowed, but encouraged!

At ages two and four now, the kids are pretty self sufficient so I was able to add extras to the menu. Each daughter was handed a ball of dough that yielded a dozen or so peanut-eared Christmas mice, and a red spiraled log to slice and bake into pinwheels. Butterscotch pudding "gingerbread men" were another choice.

A new year brings new celebrants! "Three month's cute" twin sisters Ava and Angeline attended grandma's baking party for the first time, opting to pass on the sprinkles, but observing everything very intently!

Christy had a great idea. She suggested that we make keepsake Christmas ornaments each year. Her choice was a handprint cast in air dry clay that becomes a happy Santa face once grandma whisks her magic paintbrush across the surface.

Ava placed her little hand on the surface of thinly and smoothly rolled air dry clay.

We gently pushed to make an impression. Then I used the rim of a jar as a cookie cutter to make a circular ornament.
I'll deliver these on Christmas eve!

Oh, Santa!.....his friendly face was everywhere! Not only did those big old cookie jars go home with each family, but hand made aprons declared devoted affection for that jolly old elf! I traced a dollar store kid's apron for the pattern, trimmed them in bias cut fabric, appliqued hearts, and ironed on letters to complete the set of three.

Ever try to get the perfect photo of all your kids where everybody smiles cutely at the camera
and no one has anything to tattle about? Good luck!

Shhh! This is where baby gingerbread boys are being born!

                                              Party favor! Plastic eyeglass straws!

It's fun to add new things to make and do every year, but one thing about Grandma's Cookie Baking Party will always remain the same. Mommies sincerely appreciate the opportunity for their kids to enjoy the tradition of seasonal baking alongside their cousins, aunts, and grandma...everything ready to go without having to squeeze the preparation, the mess, and the clean up into the busiest month of the year. That's grandma's job!.....and I love it!

Here and here are stories about last year's event!


  1. And you are excellent at your job I might add! You are an A+ Grandma! I just LOVE the pictures of the kids frosting their cookies! There is no right or wrong way to decorate them -- only the yummy finger-licking good way! Not only can I hear the joy of the evening in your words -- you can see it in those faces! What memories you are giving them all! Merry Christmas J!

  2. Oh how fun! And such grand family memories for you all. Whenever I visit my long distance grandkids, we always have a sugar cookie decorating party together. It's one of the highlights of our time together, along with plenty of arts and crafts fun. Great times and tasty treats. Thanks for a fun visit and MERRY CHRISTMAS !

  3. Adorable grand kids. Those glasses straw is hilarious! Thanks for linking up!

  4. ok this is ALL awesome as usual but once I saw the twins I just cracked up. They look quite serious. Like little observers hoping everyone does this correctly, LOL! "Now don't BURN those cookies in the oven ...are you paying attention to the time they've been in there? "

    You are RIGHT about pre-baking the sugar cookies. I did that one year for Kate to decorate a tray of cookies and it worked! That's all that they are really interested in is the decorating after all.

    The pictures are create so many wonderful times and memories ! I wish you were MY grandma ha ha ha !

  5. Thank you for linking up with the Clever Chicks this week!

    Merry Christmas,
    Kathy Shea Mormino

    The Chicken Chick

  6. Thank you for stopping in and sharing your crafty creation with our readers at Bowdabra's Crafty Showcase. We love seeing your projects each week. Stop in and see which blogs are featured on Friday and to link up more of your goodies on Sat-Thur.

    Happy New Year,
    Susie @Bowdabra

  7. Wonderful as always! What a fun time and those new babies are so cute! I don't know which is the sweetest.....the frosting or the babies! Love the hand print Santa too :)

  8. the cookies, the frosting, the sprinkles, the handprint ornament, the aprons, and the children, oh those precious children! and the memories you make for them as well as your daughters and their husbands are ones they'll cherish forever! :>D