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Welcome-to-Town Cookie Party

The holiday season is here, girlfriends! Along with the snowflakes and cold, many out-of-town holiday guests will be dropping in soon.  Oh,’tis the season

milka stars
to be jolly, but with everyone vying for time with the out-of-towners, it can quickly create seasonal chaos. But don’t get your panties in a wrinkle just yet, girlfriends! You can host a fabulous cookie fete for girls big and little, with just a bit of planning and possibly some help from our friends at Pampered Chef. Add a smidge of charity for the troops and Voila! you’ll have a wonderful occasion to create memories, a party to inspire goodwill in all and bring everyone in one fell swoop right to your door. Yes, wouldn’t it be nice for the out-of-towners to do a one-stop-see-all instead of scurrying around from house to house? Sit back and read on, for GirlfriendCelebrations has the perfect multigenerational party to end your holiday blues.


The festivities will take place in your kitchen, which makes it simple with only one room to clean. However, you will want to make sure the oven is clean so that it doesn’t smoke out your guests—never a great way to get the party started. I speak from experience! Be sure to take a look in the fridge as well. Sometimes, there are stickies and ickies inside that have been looked over so much they have become part of the landscape—again, not a great way to make your guests feel welcome.

Choose a few yummy cookie recipes. Keep in mind that guests of all ages will be helping in the kitchen so keep the degree of difficulty to a minimum. Most recently, the elves at Pampered Chef shared with the Girlfriends-in-Chief how to make simple, yet perfectly beautiful, spritz cookies. Here is a quick video to inspire you:           Hint: the key to  Spritz Cookie perfection is Pampered Chef’s Cookie Press. It comes with 9 designs and is actually quite easy to use.  If my 6 year-old can use it anyone can. You’ll find their tried-and-true spritz cookie recipe here. (That’s blogger Kim Moldofsky learning to use the cookie press in the video)

Here are a few other websites to hunt for cookie ideas:  WLIT Cookie Exchange and

Gather all your baking equipment together, including multiple mixing bowls, spoons, etc., so that you aren’t on the hunt for tools while the guests are present. It’s always handy to have more than one copy of the recipe, too.

Brighten everyone’s mood in the kitchen with festive aprons for the guests to wear while they’re helping with the cookies. Vintage aprons can generally be found at thrift stores (or borrow from grandma) and they make baking neater and more fun.

Plan an entire day for the event or at least a big chunk of it for people to drop in and see your guests-of-honor and help with making cookies whenever they can. Giving everyone the flexibility to randomly stop in can make it easier for all schedules. Besides, if everyone stops by at the same time, your guests-of-honor may feel bombarded and miss the opportunity to visit with a few.

Decide ahead of time on a charitable way to dispose of the baked goods. Sending cookies to the troops is a yummy way to spread some love and thoughtfulness this season. Even if the cookies aren’t received by Christmastime, they will be welcomed with open arms any time of the year. A little taste of home goes a long way to help bring comfort close to their hearts. Here is a site that specializes in helping to send cookies to the troops all year round:  Another option would be to donate the cookies to a local nursing home or shelter.


Seriously, with the season under way, who has time for snail mail? Use Evite. . . You might say something like this:

Come enjoy some holiday cheer,

All you need to do is join us here,

Julia (guest-of-honor) would love to visit

with all those she holds dear,

for a day of baking,

memories and merrymaking.

Time:  9am – 9 pm   Please stop by anytime you can.


Keep it simple.

Set out a carafe of steamy water. Let your guests choose from a variety of teas and hot cocoas on display. Add some garnishments to the side for tea:  lemon, orange, honeysticks and milk. Some embellishments for hot cocoa:  marshmallows,  peppermint sticks, whipped cream, sprinkles, irish creme, Frangelico, and peppermint schnapps. Bottles of water and a bottle or two of vino can be available for the really thirsty guests.

Showcase a pretty holiday plate with samples of your homebaked goodies.  Arrange a light tray of veggies, low fat snack mix and a crispy pretzels to munch.


-Have a blank journal available. Ask each guest to write at least three things that they miss when the out-of-town guest(s)-of-honor is away. For those in the younger crowd, offer crayons and markers so that meaningful, age-appropriate pictures can be drawn.

-Buy a plain white apron. Ask each guest to write or draw on it with fabric markers something festive, or 3 words to describe the guest-of-honor. This will make for a nice keepsake for the honoree.

-Fill a sleigh or gift-wrapped box with blank holiday cards. Ask each guest to address it to A Recovering American Soldier with a note of thanks or “thinking of you.” Send with the cookies or mail separately to:

A Recovering American Soldier, c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center, 6900 Georgia Ave. NW, Washington, D.C.  20307-5001

-Ask little ones to adorn white chinese take-out boxes with holiday pictures to be used as guests depart with their stash of cookies.

-Be sure to have Frosty the Snowman or your personal holiday favorite videos  on hand for little ones, in case they tire of cookie-making.


Use the decorated take-out containers above, fill with festive tissue and let each family choose a few cookies to take home with them.

Spreading time among family and friends can make for brief visits with those who mean so much. We hope that you are able to visit with those near and dear this holiday season. We’d love to hear your tips for navigating family and friends during this time of year. Stay tuned to GirlfriendCelebrations for more ideas for staying in touch with those who mean the most.


  1. I love the idea of sharing some of the cookies with troops overseas! What a great twist on the same old cookie exchange :)

    Comment by Gabi — December 8, 2009 @ 8:53 am

  2. my friends and I are getting together on the 19th to have a cookie exchange some are bringing candies i cant wait, around 4 of us are getting together before the party to have a baking candy making night!!!

    Comment by pamela — December 9, 2009 @ 12:00 am

  3. [...] 2. Welcome-to-Town Cookie Party Tina says: “I love that you can host this for girls of all ages. It’s a unique twist on the old favorite cookie exchange. It’s a fun way to get the “chore” of seeing all your close friends and extended family without traveling from house to house during the time-crunched holiday season.” 3. Karaoke Girls Night Dawn says: “Classic GirlfriendCelebrations: Fun, easy, cheap, and unique. This is a great Japan-themed girls night to warm up a winter night by bringing out your inner diva.” 4. Good Scents Fragrance Party Dawn says: “I like this party not only because it is different, but also because it was developed in response to a reader request. And, it’s a collaborative effort. Several smart readers contributed suggestions.” 5. Guide to Swap Parties for Frugal Girls Nights After the book swap, accessory swap and fashion swap, what else can you trade with your girlfriends? Well, there’s more! Here’s a roundup of ways to play swap-o-rama with your gal pals. [...]

    Pingback by Our 10 Favorite Posts of 2009 | Girlfriend Celebrations — December 30, 2009 @ 11:36 am

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