Saturday, July 9, 2011

Cookie Bucket

Sue here again. I decided to write another blog because it once again pertains to my baby, Kenzie.

How do you thank a teacher who has made a difference in your life or the life of your child?  Sometimes words don’t seem to be enough.

I just have to interject for a second (it's me, Jo). I remember after I graduated a few years ago (okay, many MANY years ago) thinking about the teachers that had made a difference in my life. I ended up writing “thank you” letters to them. Mr. Dickinson and Mr. Spencer. They will never know how much I appreciated their support. I am of the mind that even though it can seem incredibly sappy sometimes, it never hurts to tell someone what a difference they made in your life.

Jo is on to something there. I had a teacher I wanted to thank for helping my daughter, Mackenzie. Not wanting to appear too sappy, I opted for something besides a “thank you” letter. A cookie basket. Or, more precisely, cookie bucket!
Mr. Beland not only taught students at the school, he went above and beyond and taught parent math tutorials after school hours to help parents be better prepared to help their children with their math homework.
Mr. Beland :)

Cookie Bucket Sugar Cookies

1 1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup shortening
1/3 cup butter, softened
2 eggs
3 Tbsp milk
3 1/4 flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch salt

Prepare dough early in the day or the day before as it needs to chill for at least 3 hours before baking.
In a large bowl, cream sugar, shortening, and butter. Blend in eggs and milk.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.
Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Using your hands, shape dough into a ball. Chill at least 3 hours, or overnight.
To Bake: preheat oven to 350. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Roll 1/2 of the dough at a time, keeping the rest refrigerated until ready to use. Roll to 1/2 inch thickness. They have to be quite thick to be stable on the craft stick. Cut with flower cookie cutter (or circle cutter to make smiley faces).  Place 1/2 inch apart on cookie sheet. Gently insert a craft stick into the bottom of each cookie, making sure to push in quite far.
Bake 10 - 15 minutes - until edges are lightly golden.
Let cool on pan for 5 minutes before removing to cooling rack to finish cooling. Do NOT handle by the stick until completely cool.
To ice : I cheated and used canned icing. You just warm it in the microwave for a few seconds and then pour over the cookie. I think next time I will try dipping the cookies instead as the pouring didn't give me the "finished" look I was going for.

I made flowers, smiley faces, and tiny flowers out of the sugar cookie recipe. I filled the base of the bucket with styrofoam and covered it with tissue paper then piled on homemade peanut butter cookies, chocolate chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal raisin cookies, and chewy gingersnap cookies. The cookies on sticks could then just be stuck in randomly wherever the looked nice.

Again, how do you thank a teacher who has made such a big difference in your life or the life of your child? I think a small gift of gratitude, such as this cookie bucket, is a nice way to do it but, to be honest, I also think just giving them the recognition, saying THANK YOU, is appreciated just as much.

Thank you Mr. Beland. You are making a difference.

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