Can you smell that? The cozy scent of warm cookies filling the whole house? One of my favorite holiday activities is making and decorating Christmas cookies. When my kids were younger, they would each invite a friend over for a day filled with creating Christmas cookie masterpieces as well as playing fun Christmas games. Fast forward to 2021, these kids are now adults and yet we still get together every year for a Christmas Cookie Party!
Roll Out Cookie Recipe ~
In the early days I had a fun-filled day planned for all of the kiddos. Memories of all of the kids rushing in after school all excited about the day’s events are still crystal clear in my mind! The cookies would already be baked and placed all around the table. Bowls of brightly colored icing scattered all around within reach of their little hands. Next come the paint brushes…you know the ones? The inexpensive pack of multi-colored kid’s paintbrushes. These served as the main decorating tool.
The Paintbrush Rule ~
If you ask any of those little bakers today, you will know the golden rule of cookie decorating. The purple paintbrush goes in the purple icing bowl, the green paintbrush goes in the green icing bowl, the yellow paintbrush goes in the yellow icing bowl….you get the picture! This keeps our colors fresh. I guarantee you that when these said kids (now adults) read this they are laughing, as I am a stickler for this rule!
While I have included an easy link for you, I honestly try to gather the paintbrushes whenever I see them at the local Dollar Store or department store. It is sometimes hard to find all of the colors you need, but collecting them over time usually proves to be successful…as long as you remember where you have stored them! 😉
The four primary colors are definitely not enough for this festive day! You will need a lot of small bowls to make all of the icing colors requested. It is much more fun if you let them create just the perfect shade of each color. Once again those memories come rushing in, “Do you think this red is bright enough?” “Should we do dark purple or light purple…or both?” “Did someone make black…we need lots of black!” “Ooooh, what about gray?”
The icing recipe itself is simple. We have tried different recipes but have finally all decided this simple recipe is our favorite. Printable version of the simple, but oh so good, icing recipe can be reached right here!
Cookie Cutters ~
We all have our favorite cookie cutter. I continue to add new ones to the mix, but nothing melts my heart more than when I hear, “Wait a minute, did you make any snowglobe cookies?” “Does anyone have a Christmas tree cookie they can share?” “What was this one?? A penguin, oh yea!”
Yes, sometimes the cookie shape is hard to tell what it is until you bring it to life with some color! Other times they get broken and still get turned into a major work of art…thanks to Ali! No, we do not have a Starbucks cookie cutter, but somehow she made the perfect latte cookie!
If I had to choose, I would say the snowglobe is one of everyone’s favorites…
It has been so much fun to watch their artistic ability change over the years. However, no matter how beautiful they are, the taste is always the same…..delicious! We are always careful to make an abundance so that everyone has plenty to take home and share….and to sample along the way.
When this tradition first began, the kids would start the afternoon out icing the cookies. We would then move on to Christmas scavenger hunts and Christmas Bingo. These activities ended with lots of festive prizes, of course. I would send the kids home hyped up on sugar but exhausted from a fun-filled day!
The tradition has now moved to evenings as we have to schedule our Christmas Cookie Party around work schedules (that damn adulting thing always interferes! 😜). We have a Cookie Crew text group that gets busy at the end of November working on the current year’s date. The phone goes ping, ping, ping and voila…we have a date! Now they all roll into the house with bottles of wine and fun Christmas gifts to share before we get to decorating! Oh, did I mention the food? Yes, we now have lots of savory appetizers as well. Now instead of me sending them off exhausted and with full bellies the exact opposite happens….oh how the times have changed!
New Decorating Tools ~
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We have recently upped our decorating game. As Ali put it best, “Oh Shel, this is a game changer!” The addition of squeeze bottles brought a whole new way of decorating to our Christmas Cookie Party fun! Wow, these are so much fun and allow for more precise decorating.
A cookie scribe is a pointy tool that is used to redistibute icing and make fun swirls on glazed cookies. The ones below have cute snowflakes on the top for a Christmas theme.
There are also some super cute decorating scribes on Etsy too! These festive gingerbread scribes by Equinox Pastry Supply are a definite plus for any cookie decorating party!
Addi demonstrates for us…
As the years go by, we add new little ones to the crew and continue making wonderful memories. Had I known years ago how special this tradition was going to be, I would have urged others to do the same!
One thing I know for sure is that these girls will continue this tradition and that makes me a very happy Mimi!
Photo Gallery of More Recent Years ~
(Some year I will go back to my old files to add pictures from the younger years!)
Now everyone get out there and get to baking…..enjoy your Christmas season! And to you, my precious Christmas Cookie Party crew…I love you…thank you for all of the wonderful memories…and cheers to many more!
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