I mean, sure, for most of us, this is generally a time of year filled with joy and cheer. But that doesn’t mean the holiday season is without challenges, right? I don’t know about you, but I hear families struggling with two things quite a bit: managing gift-giving budgets and keeping their very excitable kids entertained over the holiday break. Why not create your own cookie assembly line and solve two problems with one sugary swoop? Made-from-scratch cookies are a lot more personable and affordable than generic, store-bought gifts. Check out the ever-inventive Dan Pashman’s Good To Know tips for getting some tasty, homemade presents pulled together efficiently and inexpensively. They even let me help (free labor!).
That day was tons of fun, but admittedly — a messy production. If time or clean-up constraints have you hesitating to let your tiny tykes take over the frosting and sprinkle stations, there are a few other options that can help you get your family’s bakery open for business.
Cookie Markers – If your kiddos like to draw on paper, imagine how much they’ll enjoy drawing on their dessert! Cookie markers are a lot less messy than frosting, but pack just as much color and fun. Older children will be able to personalize cookies by writing names on them, while even pre-penmanship pals will get to leave their mark on the design.
It’s in The Bag – Maybe you’d rather whip up a more complicated recipe or let’s face it, a more symmetrical looking bunch of cookies (no offense children). Why not pick up some white craft bags and let your kids take care of the packaging? Get out the markers, crayons or washable glitter glue and let them have at it. Now they can help you in the kitchen from the safety of the playroom and still feel like they’re a part of the present-making process. Score!
Tie One On – Your kids might be more into crafting than drawing and in that case, you could ask them to weave some magic to tie up your cookie bags. Friendship bracelets of any skill level make great twist-tie replacements if you’re delivering your cookies in cellophane bags. Family and friends will love having a permanent piece of jewelry (or a new keychain) to remind them of your delicious gift! If your children aren’t able to weave yet, pony beads strung on pipe cleaners are a fun way to close up the bags as well!
So if you’ve got a lot of people left on your list and your kids have a lot of time on their hands, put ‘em to work! Find a task that each child enjoys working on and let them share in the joy of giving this holiday season.
Now we’re cookie-ing!