Sunday, December 27, 2009

A Family Cookie Exchange

I love cookie exchanges. I've only been to one but I thought it was great fun and have always wanted to host one. This was to be my year. I made plans, mentioned it to a few friends and at some point, told Jake. His response was, "will there be kids for us to hang out with?" Well, at that point, I had no choice but to shift gears and make it a family cookie exchange. After all, Christmas is for the kids.

A save the date email (that for some served as an invitation...the best laid plans) preceded invitations printed on cute paper from the dollar bin and a party was on. Each family was asked to bring a dozen or two cookies for exchanging at the end of the night.

Our offerings were simple. Chex Mix and homemade pimento cheese spread with crackers and celery. Our childhood classics.

Pots of chili. Doug's family-style red and THE BEST green tomatillo chili EVER. Both received four star reviews. He does make the best chili. Jack and Cheddar cheeses, sour cream and some Fritos for topping. I also made a small batch of mini corn muffins.

I draped our dining table with "eco-snow" and set out some empty platters for cookies brought by guests. I can't imagine forgetting I had those cute snowflake cutters! The bowl of (gasp) grocery store marshmallows was purely decorative. They seem festive and "snowy".

A Cocoa Bar made with Alton Brown's recipe and lots of fun accompaniments. Whipped cream, homemade marshmallows, mini chocolate chips, candy canes, cinnamon sticks, peanut butter cups........

To drink, apple cider for the kids and a tasty ginger berry cocktail for the grown-ups.

And, of course, the centerpiece of the evening, the many beautiful cookies brought by friends to share.

We had almost 50 people attend our little party and our hope is that they had as much fun as we did. It was so nice to actually accomplish a festive merry-making event for my children to remember fondly.

I can't wait to do it all over again next year!


Georgine said...

We had so much fun!!! Thank you for having us. Everything was so good, we totally want to the green chili recipe and the hot chocolate was delicious. And mmmm cookies. Thanks again for throwing such a great party.

Kate @hipgirls said...

I LOVE the cocoa bar and chili! What great ideas for keeping the whole family happy (and of course sugared)!