Baking Frenzy

It was in full swing last week. Our annual baking frenzy where we make teacher gifts and various other goodies so we can contribute in our small way to the annual sugar consumption in America.

First we needed to edit Scary Baby’s list of gift giving. 27 teachers, administrators and school staff was a bit excessive since we never gave that many when the 3 big kids were in school. The kid has a heart for giving which is lovely. But hello…not happening.

This year I started with 4 batches of Cajun Chex Mix.


Followed by holiday bark inspired by Leigh Anne who featured this lemon bark. I know it is a popular holiday treat but I’ve never made it. We have so many other favorites that I never get around to this easy goodie. I made also made a two-layer peppermint which was so good!


PhilBillPaul is in charge of pretzels, fudge and sugared pee-cans.


Scary Baby helped design cute little bag toppers for 25 pretzel bags for the holiday party. That’s 25 bags before we even started on the teacher gifts.


They really didn’t say from “Scary B” on the tags.

The next day “we” got busy with the teacher and staff gifts. We got it down to a more reasonable 13 bags as opposed to her original list of 27.


Her teacher and 2 principals + school nurse got the “big” bags. Everyone else got chex mix and fudge. Remind me to tell you why the school nurse totally qualified for the mother lode…on another day.


More cute little tags with Scary Baby’s input on colors and fonts.


Mini loaves of poppy seed bread are always a big hit. It was all about easy stuff this year.


Then I broke out the sewing machine and whipped up these cute felt gift bags. Okay, that is a BIG lie. I don’t even own a sewing machine.

Scary Baby was so excited when she saw the Tar-jay wiener dog gift bag she earmarked especially for her teacher. I was excited it was one dollar.

I used to be more organized and start earlier and freeze in batches. Apparently I’m getting old and forgetful. Is Christmas on the 25th this year?

For the first time in 15 years, I did not make cookies for the teacher gift bags.

I was actually fine with that. She is at a new school and I didn’t really have any reputation to adhere to from past gift giving. It was kind of a relief. And that mini loaf of poppy seed bread takes up a good amount of room. 😉

But we cannot have Christmas at our house without cookies.

So Saturday night I got busy and started mixing up cookie dough.


I had asked each family member what was their one favorite cookie they needed me to make.

Scary Baby – Lemon Drops
Wizzy – Chocolate Mint Cookies
Roger Leroy – Fudgie Bon Bons
The Grunter – Illinois Soft Sugar Cookies
PhilBillPaul – Berry Shortbread Dreams


I always try to add at least one new recipe each year so I finally got around to making these Chocolate Turtle Cookies that I had intentions of making last year. Roger Leroy gave them a nine and says they are keepers.


This is what I did all day Sunday. The oven was on for about 8 hours.


Just so you know, we don’t eat all the cookies ourselves. We make several platters to take to friends.

Side note: Scary Baby picked the green icing color. Also suitable for shamrock cookies at St. Patrick’s Day.

And we mail a few boxes to family and friends.


Anyone else going to the post office today? I’m scared to see how long the line is.

What are your most favorite holiday treats you must have at this time of year? Share the recipe too!


One year ago..

Blog Widget by LinkWithin


  1. 1
    Karen says:

    All I can say is–IMPRESSIVE and not even sure that word does it justice!

    • 1.1
      Sherra says:

      I actually just get a lot of mileage out my efforts all year long. As in not baking the rest of the year and reminding them of what I did bake at Christmas 😉 Did I forget to mention I made homemade meatballs before I started in with the sweets? Though I did get several personal emails, I guess my other three readers are too busy baking to share their favorite treat?!! 😉

  2. 2
    Mollie says:

    Hi Sherra, I’m here, I’m reading and you have more than four followers! Okay, really I’m back to the office today and catching up on your December posts (oh wait, is this office for working? I can’t tell you where I work cuz we have offices in your area!).

    I didn’t make many treats this year; not enough time. But I do love fudge and posted on my facebook page that I needed some fudge, it worked! Two friends brought me fudge. How do you make that Cajun Chex Mix? I need that for Superbowl.

    • 2.1
      Sherra says:

      @Mollie–Glad you had some good friends to bring you fudge! That’s the exact reason we bake – to pass on to those who don’t have enough time! As for the Cajun Chex Mix, I use the regular recipe with pretzels and peanuts and add these things: 1 can of Durkee/French’s Onion Rings, 1 tsp celery salt, 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper, 4-8 drops of hot sauce (I use Texas Pete) and either regular or garlic bagel chips. The boys like it super hot. The girls like it toned down a bit. Perfect either way for Superbowl!


  1. […] addition to the pre-holiday baking frenzy, I dug deep and tapped into my inner Suzy Homemaker since we were all gathered together and cooked […]

  2. […] squeezed in the baking frenzy for the teachers and grandmas. PhilBillPaul made 3 kinds of fudge, pecans and pretzels. Then I got […]