The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap

Good evening everyone!

*looks at the clock*

It’s not exactly “evening” is it? I just finished catching up on this week’s NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles, and Hawaii 5-0 while my dad slept in his chair… and now it’s nearly midnight! So… since it’s not really evening anymore, and not really morning yet… Good middle-of-the-night too?

Yeah… I’ll go with that.

I know it’s not even the end of the week yet, but I was wondering how your week was going??

Mine has been full of FUN EXCITING STUFF.

Like homework.

And finals.

And going back to the dentist because my root canal was making me want to cry still even though I was drugged up from the pain killers the dentist prescribed me.

On Saturday, I was at my BFF’s house “studying” for our Physical Anthropology final. I was running late to her house though because I was having too much fun writing my blog post about finals filled with lovely internet memes about them. Because of this I ended up leaving my “new bff” at home (aka my pain killer for my root canal).

That was not a good idea…

Whenever I would talk (which I do A LOT), apparently my teeth decided it was a good idea to close harder than I intended and I would cry out in a very uncomfortable “OW!”.

See? Good idea.

Then when I was chewing the cookie dough pieces from my awesomely delicious study-aid Dairy Queen Blizzard (on the non-root canal side!), my teeth would hit each other on the root canal side of my mouth, once again causing me to cry out in a very uncomfortable “OW!”.

The same thing happened AGAIN when my BFF and I enjoyed some El Pollo Loco for dinner.

Was it the chicken that caused it? One would think right?

But no. It was the rice.

The really soft rice.

Even though I was chewing the rice on the non-root canal side, a grain or too would slip over to the root canal side, just to mock my lack of medication.

I had no idea that a really soft grain of rice could cause such excruciating pain.

So after I left my BFF’s house to head home and take my pain meds, I got into bed and fell asleep with ELF on in the background.

After falling asleep, I tossed and turned until I woke up at 5:30 Sunday morning.

5.

30.

AM.

Why was I up at the ungodly hour? Oh, I know!

My tooth hurt.

It was throbbing, and I don’t even know how that’s possible.

I mean… when they did my root canal, they basically killed that tooth by hollowing it out and annihilating the root/nerves.

Maybe the gum surrounding the tooth was up in arms over the trauma/invasion it felt on Friday?

I don’t know the reason, but I begrudgingly got up and took my pain meds and antibiotic before I crawled back into my warm bed with awesome pink flannel sheets covered with snowmen on them, and attempted to fall back asleep.

*lesigh*

After waking up I worked on homework and basically fried my brain ALL DAY LONG.

Until 4AM.

Then I went to bed after not having finished 2 chapters worth of music homework because my brain was so fried I could not make any sense of the triads that were in front of me.

I ended up waking up at 7:30AM (30 minutes before my final started). I washed up, brushed my teeth, got dressed, brushed my hair, grabbed my backpack and ran like mad for my car to get to class on time.

Where I ended up standing outside of the classroom because the door was locked. Why? Because our professor was late and no one had tried to mess with the lock on the door to get us out of the freezing cold rain.

My professor was 15 minutes late. We took the final, I had him look over my homework and was even completely honest about not having finished 2 chapters worth of homework (even though I probably could have fibbed and said I did it all because he probably wouldn’t have even checked), and then met my BFF on campus before we headed to Starbucks.

Starbucks, btw, is seriously one of my new favorite places. But… anyways. Back to the story! I grabbed a Venti White Chocolate Mocha with Peppermint (YUM!), and we went back to my house to study for the Physical Anthropology final we had at 2PM that day.

And by “study” I meant watch Martha Stewart so I could see Callye from The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle and Glory from Glorious Treats! That was so exciting for me :)

Then we “studied” some more by going to Taco Bell to get lunch and watched my ALLTIME favorite Christmas movie, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.

Oh yeah, we also looked over our notes and stuff.

I seriously LOVE this quote from 'Christmas Vacation'!!

After my Physical Anthropology final (which was the worst final EVER… I had 43 multiple choice questions, 5 matching questions, 6 short answer questions, and 3 essay questions…) I drove to the dentist as quickly as possible to figure out why the hell my tooth was hurting so bad that I wanted to cry.

Turns out, the temporary crown they put on was too…. big? I guess is the right word? I dunno… but basically they had to drill it down because I when I would bite down, I was putting too much pressure on it, which was why it was causing me so much pain. My bite was stopping it from healing.

The dentist then prescribed me some new pain pills… Vicodin! Woo!

Too bad the Vicodin decided to eff up my stomach because I forgot to eat with it. But, my pain is almost all gone in my tooth now. So I’ll take it!

Tuesday morning I started my day with more Starbucks, then some a Bacon, Egg, & Cheese Biscuit from Jack & the Box because taking my pain meds and NOT having my stomach destroyed sounded like a good plan.

Then I had my math final (I got a 95% on it!! That means I have an A in the class :)), followed by a nap because I was really tired.

Then a massive headache from said nap and me feeling nauseaus.

Then more homework.

I went to bed last night at 2AM after not being able to mentally process anymore Psychology homework, and overslept so I ended up not being able to actually go in for my Psychology final because I hadn’t done my cheat sheet for it (my professor let us make a 8 1/2″ x 11″ cheat sheet, front and back as a study aid).

Thankfully, my professor also drops our lowest test grade, so I figured since I hadn’t had a chance to study anyways… I might as well just stay home and work on other homework since I was probably going to get an F anyways.

Thank goodness for professors like her!

After working all day on leftover Psychology homework, I fell asleep accidentally, and woke up feeling like crap. Again.

I really need to just stop taking naps.

My Dad and I went to my nephew’s Christmas play this evening though, which was freaking adorable.

There was a group of kids that didn’t have any Christmas spirit, so they traveled around the world to Mexico, Israel, Africa, Hawaii, and back home in time for their Christmas show, where they learned about the holiday traditions in the other countries.

My nephew rocked an adorable mustache and rocked out on the guitar.

He loved his mustache :P

So, you guys didn’t come here to listen to be complain about my root canal though! I mean, you guys can just go get one yourselves instead of coming to my super-pink blog to read about it.

Or maybe you’ve already been so lucky as to experience one for yourself?

Either way, let’s get on with the important stuff, shall we????

Yes, yes we shall!

I know you are all here for something WAY more exciting though, and that’s for me to gush about the awesome that is The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap!!

The cookie swap was a brilliant idea concocted by Lindsay of Love & Olive Oil and Julie of The Little Kitchen.

After you signed up for it, you received 3 matches in your country that are similar to you (allergies and what not). Then you baked 3 dozen cookies (1 dozen per match) and got them in the mail by a certain day. Then you sit back and relax, and wait for your 3 dozen cookies to arrive at your home! After you receive your cookies, you omnomnom them, then share your recipe on your blog.

It worked sort of like a Secret Santa though, because you couldn’t contact your matches until after they had received their cookies so it would be a surprise!

Unfortunately, some people did not receive all of their cookies, so Lindsay and Julie asked some people to become Cookie Angels, and bake extra cookies to mail to those that didn’t receive all 3 dozen of theirs. I am one of those chosen to be a Cookie Angel, and next week I will be baking more of my Mom’s Sugar Cookies to send to Heather at Farmgirl Gourmet

I received my first batch of cookies before I had even mailed mine out, so I lucked out because I saw how they had been shipped and had a chance to realize that I needed to do something super cute like she had!

These are the sheets I mentioned earlier, aren't they cute??? :D

These cookies were baked by Traci at YellowWISHBONE. They are Oatmeal Chocolate Chip, and were really yummy!! I loved how she packaged them too, which is why I realized I needed to make a trip to Michaels before I shipped mine. Her Santa tin they came in was adorable, and she matched the cheetah print on Santa’s hat with some super cute paper she used to seal the bags the cookies were in. Traci also sent an adorable banner that I will definitely be hanging up in my bedroom this Christmas!

If you want to see more of what Traci is up to, you should follow her on Twitter :)

The second batch of cookies I received were from Lena at Fit on the Rocks. They were Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies, and smelled as good as they tasted! Lena packed hers similarly to how I did mine, with a really cute Christmas-y tin.

If you want to see more of what Lena is up to, you should follow her on Twitter :)

The final batch of cookies I got were from Chelcie at Chelcie’s Food Files. She baked the All-in-One Cookie, which combined all of her favorite things (peanut butter, m&m’s, oats, pretzels, and chocolate chips) into one super yummy sweet and salty cookie! Chelcie included her recipe, and sent the cookies in a santa hat for padding. It was a really cute touch, and my harp is now enjoying it as her first Christmas decoration :)

If you would like to see more of what Chelcie is up to, you should follow her on Twitter :)

I baked my Mom’s Sugar Cookies recipe for the cookie swap, which is a recipe that I’ve grown up with and has been in my family for about 3 generations.

My mom and I baked them at every major holiday: Easter, Halloween, and Christmas. She had cute cookie cutters for each holiday, and I helped her cut the cookies out and sprinkled them with colored sugar and sprinkles.

I choose to bake them for the cookie swap because for me, it’s not Christmas without these cookies. They are such a huge part of my Christmas memories, and I wanted to share them with everyone else and spread my mom’s love for Christmas on this first Christmas without her since her passing in February. :'(

I packaged the cookies in cute Christmas bags, with 4 cookies per bag.

Then each bag got put in a super cute Christmas tin with a card, and then wrapped in brown paper so I could send them off via USPS.

I really hope that everyone enjoyed these cookies, because I baked them with as much love as my mom and I did when we baked them together.

One thing you should note about this recipe… they do expand during baking, so it’s not ideal for frosting if you are doing intricate shapes.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone!

♥ and harp strings,
Kate

Mom’s Sugar Cookies                                             [click to print]

Makes about 4 dozen cookies (recipe passed down from my mom, Carol)

Ingredients

5 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons cream of tartar
2 teaspoons baking soda
dash of salt
2 cups shortening (such as Crisco)
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla

Method

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Sift flour, then re-measure 5 cups of flour from the sifted flour (return the remaining flour to wherever you store your flour).
3. Resift the flour with the dry ingredients.
4. In a mixing bowl cream the shortening and sugar.
5. Add eggs and vanilla, and blend well.
6. Add dry ingredients, scraping bowl between each addition.
7. Separate dough into quarters, wrap in saran wrap and chill in the fridge overnight or until ready to bake.
8. Bake at 350 degrees F for 8-10 minutes, or until edges are golden brown.

Photo Walkthrough:

Everything you will need for this recipe.

Place your sifter onto some wax paper. Then measure out your 5 cups of flour into your sifter and sift into a mountain of flour.

Move the sifter onto a second sheet of wax paper, and spoon the mountain of flour back into the sifter to sift again.

You'll end up with another beautiful mountain of flour.

Move the sifter back to the first piece of wax paper and begin re-measuring your 5 cups of flour back into the sifter. Spoon/pour the remaining flour back into your flour container for storage.

Add your cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt to the flour in the sifter, and sift everything together into yet another mountain.

Add your sugar and shortening to a mixer, and cream.

Add your eggs and vanilla to the mixing bowl, and blend well.

Add your dry ingredients a little at a time, blending well and scraping the bowl between each addition.

Once all the ingredients have been combined, tear off a piece of saran wrap and put 1/4 of the dough into it and wrap it up. Do this 3 more times. Once all the dough has been separated, put it in the fridge for a few hours or overnight to chill.

Once the dough has chilled, get your cookie cutters, flour, rolling pin, and colored sugars/sprinkles out.

Flour the area you'll be rolling the dough out on well. Flour the top of the dough a little, as well as the rolling pin to prevent sticking. If the dough breaks while rolling it, just patch it back together. Once it's rolled out, flour your cutter, and start cutting out your cookies by pressing the cutter firmly into the dough, and moving it slightly back and forth to separate it from the rest of the dough.

As you cut the cookies out, place them on your cookie sheet of choice, and decorate them with colored sugars/sprinkles prior to putting them in the oven. I tried making a lot of the cookies on my stoneware cookie sheet, and I would recomment it. For some reason, it made the cookies expand a lot more than they usually would. Once I switched back to using the jelly-roll pans with Silpats, the cookies worked just like they had in the past. :)

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6 responses to “The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap

    • :D :D :D I saw a picture of the harps at UofU all decked out for Christmas, and it occurred to me that Elizabeth might be upset that she never gets to dress up for Christmas :P Oh my gawd… I should totally get her some twinkle lights!!! Did you have a strand of battery operated ones? Or did they plug into the wall??

      Thanks for reading my random/late night post Holland :P

      ♥ and harp strings,
      Kate

      Like

  1. Pingback: the little kitchen » The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap Recipe Roundup Part 2·

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