Image Map

December 21, 2011

A Last Minute Neighbor Gift

We are in the home stretch now!  It is UNBELIEVABLE to me that Christmas is 4 days away!  Maybe because it is 80 degrees here? It just seemed fast this year. Really fast. So I think this is my last post until after Christmas. Gotta snuggle with those littles and my youngest has a fever today :( but is the happiest sick kid in the universe.  I could just squeeze the stuffing out of her she is so sweet.

But in the meantime, let me share the little treats I made for my neighbors.  
I have to give COMPLETE AND TOTAL PROPS to Jill of Meet the Dubiens and her adorable reindeer cookies above.
Now for mine...
For those of you have been long time readers know that I am...ahem...decorative icing challenged.  As in...whenever I attempt it it's a debacle. Let me show you with photos from previous posts...
My daughter's birthday cake.

You get the picture. 
I am truly challenged and should be stopped if ever spotted wielding a pastry bag.
It just isn't pretty.
But when I saw those, cutie patootie reindeer, I figured those were pretty easy. It was one of the first things I pinned on Pinterest. Some antlers, 2 eyes and plop a nose on there. EASY PEASY!
Well,here they are!
They certainly don't look like Jill's but I think they are cute enough to give to my neighbors and still show my face in my hood. 
 I decided I would give each neighbor a dozen reindeer cookies. I had bought those cute little ceramic mini loaf pans at Michael's for a $1 each.  Jill made her cutie gingerbread cookies but I made sugar cookies. I decided to make 11 with brown noses (chocolate chips) and 1 with a little Rudolph nose (a red M & M) as a little giftable treat.  Too cute!

Here's the Sugar Cookie recipe:
2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
1 large egg
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
sugar for rolling cookies

Preheat oven to 350°. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
Whisk flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together. Set aside.
Beat together sugar and butter until creamy.
Add egg and extract.  Mix well. Add dry ingredients a little at a time.
Roll  the dough into little balls and then roll into sugar placing them on parchment covered baking sheets about 2 inches apart.
Make 8-10 minutes until edges are slightly browned.  Cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes and then transfer to cooling rack.

And I think they turned out pretty adorable.
I made the tags with a 2 inch circle punch and Martha's snowflake punch that I found at Marshall's for $4.99.  Marshall's and crafty goodies on the cheap?  Who knew? 
 I wanted the snowflakes to be 3 dimensional so I folded one so the edges would be bent and glued it to the middle of another snowflake.  My message was on the back of each circle. 
I slid each one into a cellophane bag, tied it off with twine and the tag and that's it!
Another idea I had is to use a plate from the dollar store and a ceramic pen. Another great way to gift some cookies.  You could also use the pen on those ceramic loaf pans too but I just did not have the time this week.
I wrote around the perimeter of my plate with parts of Christmas songs, favorite things I love about Christmas, traditions etc. I am not crazy about my handwriting but the finished plate looks really cute and I like the simplicity of the wording in black.
  I bought two 99¢ solid color bandannas in red and white and used a fabric marker to draw snowflakes all over the white one which was super fun to just doodle for 30 minutes.
Then using my idea here, I wrapped the cookie plate with the bandanna and tied it off with a cute little snowflake embellishment. A great way to travel with a plate of cookies, pie, etc for the holidays.

Well that's it!
Knowing many of you, your neighbor gifts are already done but I thought I would still share.

Merry Christmas my Friends!


  1. I wish I were your neighbor! So nice! Merry Christmas!

  2. jaw complete AWE!!!!! all i can manage to say is WOW!!!!!! you just never fail to amaze me!!!! i mean really Jessica -- this is simply fabulous and the presentation -- well as always BRILLIANT!!!! sending tons of holiday hugs to you and yours and those cutie pie reindeer!!!! : )

  3. Okay I keep telling you I NEED NEED NEED to get on your list.... :) You need to link these up...

  4. Further proof that we should be actual real-life neighbors. :)

  5. I love how on sync we are ...these are perfect cookie gift ideas ...xo

  6. no wonder you havent called me, You spent a whole week making that gorgeous plate!

    Oh how i love EVERYTHING!!!!!
    You Rock my world my friend..Rock It!

  7. Jessica! Everything in this post excites me. I love the plate idea most of all. You are so clever. Merry Christmas!

  8. I love the presentation! So pretty! I may be totally left field here, but I used to think of homemade gifts as something you did when you didn't have money to buy a real gift (of course that was WAY before craft blogs and pinterest, and of course before the focus on our economic demise and sending jobs overseas- I told you I was out there :-))
    Now I am totally inspired to make more of these VERY THOUGHTFUL and very PRETTY gifts for everyone on my list.

    These gifts say, " I care so much for you that I put my time and effort into making this for you with my two hands."

    Just beautiful!

  9. Awesome neighbor, you are! ♥

  10. Now I know....we have to move. I mean I really need to be your neighbor :) Really. These are super cute & how fun for the kids to go handing these babies out! you are always inspiring me Jess!!!

  11. Super cute! Yeah, well you should see my piping skills. Horrible! My boyfriend wanted to take a picture once, I had icing all over my hands and arms, he was laughing so hard!

    HAHA! One day I will get it, maybe.

  12. What an awesome and yet simple gift idea for gift giving and not just for neighbors but aquaintances (sp) as well! Thanks for sharing...this is have me addicted to your site...hehe...

  13. Cutest cookies ever! We are going to do some baking tomorrow, maybe we will try these out!! I also adore that plate!! Merry Christmas Jessica!! I hope you have a blessed day with family & friends!!

  14. really really cute! love the cookies, i just wanna eat them!!!! lol good job girl, love ya and Merry Christmas!!! God bless you and your beautiful family!!!!

  15. what great ideas! I love the plate! Merry Christmas!

  16. My sweetest friend Jess, Merry Christmas to you and your little you...xo

  17. Fabulous packaging ideas -- especially the handwritten holiday phrases around the plate rim! Can see the many possibilities with that one!

  18. I love the cookies (yours look great!). The plate is a stroke of genius and the bags are adorable! I'm a new follower! I hope you'll follow me back! I look forward to seeing more of your fun crafts!

  19. What lovely gifts. LOL at the birthday cake icing.

  20. Hi there!
    I'm Bec from Little Lucy Lu .... I've been following your blog for a while now, but until I clicked over today from The Girls Creative (where we both made her "Blog Crushes of 2011" list ... how COOL is that!?), I had never noticed your infertility story ....
    Just spent the last 20+ minutes reading it, and very glad I did.
    I have also had quite the journey with infertility, though I've yet to share it on my blog ... mostly because I'm still in the midst of it and it's just too hard to write about right now.
    Also, I always feel like our story isn't as touching as others because, after all, we do HAVE our Little Lucy Lu! :-) .... (but then there's the fact that it took 8 years to get her .... )
    Anyway - just wanted to say how much I loved reading your story, how much I can relate, and how glad I am to have found another God-fearing woman to identify with here in blog land. :-)
    Hugs to you!
    ~Bec :-)

  21. That's really beautiful, Jessica and your handwriting is gorgeous. Your neighbors are lucky LOL xo

  22. i can't stop laughing at the birthday cake! hahahahaha! what a GREAT idea for the plate with the handwriting! GREAT IDEA! the reindeer cookies are super cute and easy too. love your ideas!



  23. I will save the idea about the reindeer cookies until next christmas, really cute! And it's reassuring to hear that you are not a star at icing but you still could make these :-) And what a beutiful handwriting you have!!! And you "doodle" great snowflakes! I have been thinkin of buying porcelain- and fabric marker pens for a while, and now I want them even moore!

  24. Very the reindeer cookies!!

  25. Love these. I've been scouring the interent for the perfect handmade gift for my daughter's teachers and the neighbor's. They are simply adorable! I have a question, is that red and white parchment paper? If so, where do you purchase that at? Thanks.


I love, love, love, comments and I read every one! Please keep in mind that I sometimes moderate each one so it may take a bit before it appears on the post. Thanks my sweet friends!