Cookie Decorating Party
This year we hosted our first annual Cookie Decorating party. I have wanted to host one of these for awhile, but Jasper's recent enthusiasm for baking encouraged me to finally do so this year. We kept the guest list short and made stacks of delicious gingerbread ahead of time. We had a fun filled morning with friends and I was reminded how lucky we are to have such wonderful friends. The amount of joy seen on these children's faces while they were chasing each other around or decorating cookies made all my efforts feel so worthwhile. Children are the best and watching your friend's children grow to love your own children is truly the best!
I bought these cute little metal cookie stands at Target and then promptly realized they were not food safe. I went ahead and traced the top of the stand on top of a plastic freezer bag and cut out a liner for the stand. In order to make them different heights I inverted a bowl and slid it under one of them. For the table decorations I pulled things from around my house: little bottle brush trees, fake snow and a couple little glass Santas. Even though I no longer scrap book I am always pulling from my paper collection. 12 x 12 scrapbook paper makes for perfect little placemats for each child, it will protect your table cloth and give the table a festive touch. We also made little initials for each child with modeling clay a few days before hand.
Jasper putting his new rolling pin to use. He wasn't as interested in decorating the cookies as he was licking off the frosting.
A few tips for hosting your own Cookie Decorating Party:
1. Make cookies ahead of time. Depending on the age of the children they might find it fun to make the dough. For our little group, I knew we didn't have the couple hours required to make, refrigerate, roll out, cut out, freeze, bake, cool and then repeat. An easy alternative to this would be to have the dough made ahead of time and rolled out. Then the children could do the fun part of using the cookie cutters on it.
2. Provide a variety of colors of frosting, sprinkles and decorations. Children, unlike adults are not bound to the traditional colors of Christmas. One of our guests only wanted purple icing so I am happy I had them help select the colors we made.
3. Expect a mess. I wasn't surprised when my son thought it was a good idea to drop handful of sprinkles on the floor.
4. Children feel special when you spend time with them. I had high hopes of sending out cute invitations, providing the children aprons in their favorite colors, chefs hats and cookie cutters of their favorite things to do and their initials. In the end, none of it arrived in time, but it did not deter us from having any fun in the slightest.
5. Parties make great gifts. If you are anything like me you love your children's friends almost as much as they do. I always try to figure out something special to do for them for Christmas and this year I thought a party would be fun in lieu of a gift.
6. Keep the guest list short. By keeping the guest list short I was able to provide each guest with a box full of goodies. Each guest went home with two cookie cutters, a mini rolling pin, a box of candy, festive straws and a dish towel. It was so fun to put these together and it would have ended up being expensive if our guest list had been long.
7. Do what they like. My son is really interested in firetrucks, big trucks, rockets and gingerbread men, so this year I made certain to buy cookie cutters which reflected his current interests. In the past, I might not deem a fire truck a festive Christmas cookie, but since my son loves it so do I.
Just looking at this photo brings me joy. Merry Christmas everyone!