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My First Cookie Exchange Party

That’s right I said it. I am from New Jersey, consider myself “street smart” (which is totally not true) and pretty savvy at making the holidays rock for the kids. In doing that, I have forgotten to make the holidays rock for me. So this year, I am taking the plunge and going to my first Christmas Cookie Exchange Party. That’s right… it’s my first time.

Cookie Exchange Party:  Where suburban housewives everywhere gather together, bring one type of cookie and swap cookies so that they have a variety of cookies and do not have to slave for days in the kitchen. It’s brilliant really.  

We don’t live in a typical suburban neighborhood where everyone is always outside chatting, so for cool fun activities like this, I have to rely on my friends that do live in those neighborhoods and have these parties.  In the past, I have been invited to cookie exchange parties that require you to make 12, 8, 10 dozen cookies. Those numbers never sounded like anything I wanted to be a part of. So I was left slaving away making all the cookies I could think of 4 days before Christmas. This year, a friend came through for me and invited me to a party that only required 3-4 dozen cookies, kids were welcome and it was only an hour long. I am so in!

Then I remember that I get extremely anxious about cooking food for other people. I’m not sure when this settled in. I used to love to have people over and would cook all the time. By “cook” I mean make awesome football party dips. Ah… that’s it. The soon as my friends graduated to cooking actual dinner, I have not wanted to cook for anyone. I do not have a “gift” for cooking. I can follow a recipe and most of the time it comes out with taste. My dear sweet husband is usually just excited what I cook has taste. I digress… back to my anxiety. This is what I picture when I think of going to a cookie exchange party. Everyone I know has suddenly turned into 50’s housewives, but I am still short, overweight and can not wear heels (because of a bad ankle) so it is even more obvious that I am short and I am always dressed in sweats in these situations that I completely create in my head.

Does anyone else have this vision in their head when they get anxiety about going to a party with women they have not met? No? Just me? Okay... carry on.

This anxiety is not based on anything valid. Oh, there was that one neighborhood party I went to and there was a gossipy gal talking badly about me even though I had never met her… but other than that, I am basing these fears on nothing valid. My friend is a very nice person. She has very nice friends and her neighbors are very nice as well. So this year, I put my big girl panties on and decided I would be a Christmas Cookie Exchange Party Virgin no more!

I immediately headed to Pinterest. I had to remember my user name, reactivate my account, decide that I really wanted to have an account under Mom Complicated, so I started a new business page and THEN started to pin cookie recipes. There were so many cute ideas! Some were obvious Pinterest Fails just taunting you at the awesomeness you would never achieve. Some just never looked yummy to start with. I was including my little guys in the baking process, so I also didn’t want anything too complicated. Then I saw it, the cookie I would choose. This party is a one cookie type party. You are placing your whole cookie reputation on one cookie for the whole year. You want your cookie to be visually appealing without being unattainable. You want it to taste good and travel well. So without further adieu, please let me introduce you to the

Murphy Christmas Cookie Exchange Cookie Choice for 2013

The cookie that you bring to your cookie exchange party will define you for the rest of the next year. What did you pick? No pressure...

I’d like to thank Pin: for the inspiration. We simplified the process a bit and used boxed cookie mix. Chocolate frosting from a can and Bob’s Candy Canes. My youngest son “Little” developed the turn and press technique for applying the candy cane bits. I really owe him a lot for thinking of that strategy.

I’m excited for tomorrow night. Kids are welcome, it’s an hour long and I have my awesome cookies ready to go. I have full faith that the women that will be attending are awesome and let’s hope that my platters are empty at the end of the swap!

So tell me. Are you a Christmas Cookie Exchange Party goer? Do you attend one or several? What are the best cookies to bring? What are the big fails?

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