Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Virtual Cookie Exchange

 It's that time of year again. Welcome to the Virtual Cookie Exchange and blog hop hosted by Carol at Just Let Me Quilt. I am excited to share a favorite Christmas cookie recipe with you that I make each year as well as a family tradition and a quilt too.

I will start with the tradition. When I was first married, 35 years ago, I started collecting the Department 56 New England Christmas Village. For several years either my husband or my mother would buy me a new piece as a Christmas gift. Originally I would put the village under the tree each year. Since we have a real tree this was a tedious last minute chore as my village grew larger. Eventually, we purchased a television/sound system cabinet whose broad top was perfect for my village. We no longer have a TV in that cabinet, but it still serves as the display case for my village which is now one of the first decorations that I put up each December. 

I try to make the set-up just a bit different each year. It makes me smile just looking at the photos.

Here it is when it is lit up at night.

The quilt that I am sharing this year is my first, and so far only, attempt at redwork.

This usually hangs on the wall that you face as you enter the front door of my home just below the railing that surrounds the second floor landing. I made it several years ago and am quite pleased with how it turned out.

Finally, the cookies. Isn't that why you came to this exchange in the first place? Each and every year, we make decorated Christmas cookies as a family. I make the simple sugar cookie dough, chill it and then roll it out. We all participate in the decorating. This pic of my son and daughter decorating and using the cookie cutters is from a couple of years ago.

Some of the cookie cutters I inherited from my grandmother, some were my mother's, some are ones I have collected over the years. You can see them piled up near the flour jar. We usually have quite an assembly line going. Decorating requires brushing on beaten egg white and then sprinkling with colored sugars, nonpariels and perhaps some sugar trees or stars and the like before baking.

Here is one batch right before baking.

As you can see, we get creative.

Here is the recipe if you would like to try these yourself. They are delicious.

Christmas Butter Cookies

Ingredients:   1 Cup butter, softened (I use salted butter)

                    1 Cup sugar

                    3 eggs, separated, save the egg whites for later.

                    2 1/2 cups sifted flour    

                    1 tsp. vanilla

        1. Cream butter in a large bowl, gradually beat in sugar.

        2. Add egg yolks one at a time, beating after each addition.

        3. Slowly add sifted flour.

        4. Add vanilla.

        5. Divide dough into two rounds and wrap each in 

            waxed paper, chill at least 1 hour.


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 

2. Roll chilled dough to 1/8 inch thickness. Use your favorite cookie cutters and place on a Silpat lined baking sheet (or plain cookie sheet). 

3. Brush each cookie with egg whites that have been whisked. 

4. Decorate with colored sugars, nonpareils, or other small sugar decorations.

5. Bake for 8 - 10 minutes. Watch the cookies, thin ones can burn.

These cookies can also be cooked prior to decorating with icing if preferred. Just eliminate steps 3 and 4 of the decorating and make the cookies a little thicker. Decorate with icing once cookies have cooled. 

Be sure to visit all of the other blogs that are participating in this Cookie Exchange.

December 1

Creatin' in the Sticks

Doreen – Just Let Me Quilt Guest

Bumbleberry Stitches

Home Sewn By Us
Quilt Schmilt

Food for Thought

Life in the Scrapatch

Ms P Designs USA

Just Sew Quilter

Cathie's Craftworks

Cynthia's Creating Ark


December 2


Karen's Korner

Sew Many Yarns

Selina Quilts

Pieceful Thoughts of My Quilting Life

Days Filled With Joy

Words & Stitches

Just Because Quilts


December 3



DayBrook Designs

Karrin’s Crazy World

Samelia's Mum

Songbird Designs

For The Love Of Geese

Stitchin At Home

Dreamworthy Quilts

That Fabric Feeling


December 4

Just Let Me Quilt

Quilt Fabrication

Seams To Be Sew

Happy Cottage Quilter

Pumpkin Patch Patterns & Quilting

The Darling Dogwood

Kathleen McMusing


DesertSky Quilting 

I hope you enjoyed your stroll through these wonderful blogs. I know I will be collecting some new and delicious recipes to make this year and in the future.

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Love, love your Christmas Village!!! And the cookies look yummy! xx

  2. Love your decorations .
    Your red work Santa is cute .
    Cookies look yummy how lovely to get the family together helping .

  3. Beautiful cookie decorating, and you can be sure the kids will carry on the tradition! The quilt is beautiful, too! My village going up this week.

    Maria :0)

    1. If you see this, I am a Long Island Girl too. Thanks for visiting.

  4. I do want to make a "red work" quilt someday. Your Santa is lovely and the cookies sound delish!

  5. I also have a department 56 village that I set up each year. I love that you make the cookies as a family!

  6. I enjoyed seeing your village--beautiful! Your redwork looks beautiful too, and those cookies look delicious! Thanks for sharing.

  7. love your Christmas Village pieces - they make such wonderful decorations

  8. I love your village! I used to have a huge village that got harder and harder to make room for. Over the years I've given a lot of the pieces away, but have held on to a few. It always made me smile. Your redwork piece is beautiful...redwork is one of my favorites! After seeing your sugar cookies and decorating crew, I think that's what I may have the family make this year instead of gingerbread houses. At least they can be eaten and they look amazing! Thank you for sharing your Christmas goodies with us!

  9. Happy Virtual Christmas Cookie Exchange, Cathy! Your Christmas Village and Santa Redwork are so festive looking.. Thank you for the yummy looking cookie recipe. I have a collection of old cookie cutters, too. May you and yours have a safe and happy holiday season ... <3 Pat

  10. I used to have a Christmas village set up, back when I had a piano. There just doesn't seem to be anyplace to put it anymore. It was so much fun to collect new pieces. What a great way to spend family time by decorating cookies. Those are the memories that everyone will hold near and dear!

  11. Love shares - your memories and your wonderful villages, your cookies and your redwork, which I love!

  12. Thanks for the recipe. My Christmas village takes up a huge dining room table and banquet table, and grandsons crawl under the tables to light them all. Sadly I won't be getting them out this year due to my husband's health problems, but it us a favorite tradition for me too!

  13. Merry Christmas! My Christmas village will be on top of the piano, as usual. The collection started with a North Pole village house from my husband, and grew until I don't have the space for more houses. I love the details for each cute little house. Merry Christmas!

    1. I no longer have any more room either, so I will not be expanding my village. The local store that used to have a huge display has closed, so I don't have that temptation any more. Merry Christmas!

  14. Thank you for sharing so many memories and the cookie recipe. I love your Christmas village and your Redwork quilt.

    1. Merry Christmas. I am glad you enjoyed my post.

  15. Hi,
    Your cookies look so yummy, I can almost smell them baking. Thanks for sharing your recipe. Love the red work Santa. Have a great day!

  16. What a lovely Christmas village! And isn't it great when making Christmas cookies is a family event? I really enjoy that my grown up son still insists on baking with us.

    1. Isn't it wonderful that our grown children still enjoy the traditions we instilled in them.

  17. Your Christmas village is so sweet and looks extra special all lit up like that.

  18. I love your village! I have one that I collected over the years but it's not Dept 56.

  19. Such a pretty village, Cathie! I bet it is fun to get it out each year. I love redwork, and your Santa is just great! The surrounding pachwork border is a neat design, too. Looks like your family really enjoys decorating the sugar cookies - that's a fun activity no matter what age the kids are!

  20. Cathie, I love sugar cookies and your Christmas Village is so sweet and pretty. Thanks for sharing!

  21. Your redwork Santa is lovely! Your cookies look very pretty. I bet they are delicious! Thank you for the recipe.

  22. Hi Cathie! Oh, how I used to love to cross stitch. I think I briefly saw a message that said you would have visited our shop if we still had one. I definitely would have taken all of the inventory online - that's right up my alley. Our walls are still covered with cross stitch items. You have to come back and read tomorrow's post - I have a large Village collection, too. (We must be sister's from different mothers!) Wait until you see how I displayed my pieces this year. Oh, I can just imagine how nice that TV cupboard surface works for the display! We used to have a cookie bake with our family right before Christmas. Some quite elaborately decorated cookies emerged from those events. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe! ~smile~ Roseanne

  23. Your village is delightful and it's a wonderful tradition. Your redwork looks great - I wonder why you've not done more. Hmmmm. Butter is the real key to sugar cookies that are tasty as well as adorable. Decorating is a wonderful tradition, too. Thank you for sharing with us.

  24. Your Christmas village is charming and looks prety lit up. A lovely family tradition of decorating the cookies. Thank you for sharing.

  25. The Christmas village is very pretty especially with the lights. Our family tradition is making mince pies together on Christmas eve. We have such fun together.

  26. Your cookies look amazing. I can imagine sitting with cookies and a cup of tea and starring at the lite Christmas Village. Very cozy.

  27. Oh my, I love that Village. What a lovely tradition and growing collection. Lit up it is very beautiful.

  28. I love your village - thank you for showing us. We live in an apartment now so I have no room for anything like that but I would love it all the same.

  29. lovely holiday photos! It's just the two of us for the holidays so I'll be doing the minimalist baking duties.

  30. Your redwork is lovely! Every year, I think I'm going to make cookies and decorate them with icing, and I never do. Maybe this year! Haha!

  31. I love your Santa and the cookies look so good.

  32. Love your redwork Santa! Redwork always has such a nice classic look to it. I make sugar cookies (from a mix) with my son every year and he loves to make a mess/decorate with the icing--he's 7 this year.


Thanks for your comments! I love to hear from you.