Is it Christmas yet? So close, whew ~ still time to share one more Christmas post! In blogland, holiday posts start the end of October, about the same time as decorations start showing up in stores. In both cases that’s so folks can get ideas, and have time to do, buy, wrap and give. For years, working in retail visual merchandising, I lived in Christmas land starting in September, and by the time it actually arrived, we were well into spring. I lived in permanent calendar vertigo ~~~
Now I live in real-time, and blog about it as it happens. I blog about my bluwaterlife ~ I don’t live for the blog. 🙂 Last week, I went to a cookie swap party hosted by my friend Val, of A Scrumptious Life. She’s hosted her holiday cookie swap for years, and has it down pat. Lunch, conversation, and lots of cookies for sharing. I decided to try these Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars from my friends at 2beesinpod.com ~ and they were every bit as good as promised! Check out the recipe on their site. Here are a few pics from my cookie making, baking and packaging ~~~
With so many cookies to share, I cut these into squares rather than bars. Perfect two-bite sweets – unless you are Bluwaterguy, then they are one-bite sweets! I put the squares in paper cups for packaging. I baked one night, and packaged the next. I used clear cello bags this year for a different package, and in hind-sight, it would have been easier to use my usual go-to little bakery boxes. Check out my Chocolate Gingerbread Cookies and Red Velvet Cookies from past years, with the bakery box packages. 🙂
Trays of cookies ready for packaging ~ three trays in fact. I added some chopped peanuts to the top before the chocolate set, and before slicing into squares. We really liked the tiny bit of salty crunch with the sweet chocolate.
Tags with printed labels, tied with baker’s twine ~ six cookies per bag, with a little paper shred for cushioning.
In the basket and ready to go to the party ~~~
Val sets out party bags on her entry shelves, so guest can drop-off cookies on their way in. It is always fun to see what’s already in the bags!
And we all bring extras for the buffet ~ it’s our dessert after we finish lunch. I always have to remind myself that there are some of each in my bag ~ it makes the tasting decisions less difficult ~ otherwise I would want to try them all!
I also have to share Val’s beverage set up. She loves time at the beach too! That’s a favorite photo of her dad ~ she calls him the tropical Michelin Man in that photo. 🙂 I love her idea of framing out the individual letters. Would work for a favorite place, or person’s name too ~ such a cute idea.
Val had 17 friends over for her party ~ that’s a lot of cookies to swap! I was so pleased with the Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars from my friends recipe ~ and can’t wait to make them again. Coming to a tailgate party near you soon! Also check out Val’s Chocolate Pistachio Sables ~ these were my other favorite cookie from the party. Will definitely make these slice and bake marvels too!
We are headed up the road to spend a few days at Christmas with Bluwatermom and Bluwatersis. I’m holding out for one last Amazon delivery and a few left to wrap. So I’m making it just under the wire for Christmas, with New Year’s and Bluwaterguy’s birthday coming up next. It’s my bluwaterlife, and I like living it in real-time now. Hope you are ready for your real-time holidays too!