1 dozen eggs - $2.99
12 sticks of butter - $8
5 bags of various chips (chocolate, white chocolate, butterscotch, toffee and chocolate) - $12
Countless other baking ingredients - Already at home
Baking 33.5 dozen cookies to send to our troops in Iraq - Priceless
One of the guys who taught our College class at church is in the Army Reserve and was deployed to Iraq a few months ago for about a year; he won't be back till September 2009. While I was helping out with one of our community S.O.S. projects through church (Spirit of Service), I had a chance to chat with his wife quite a bit about all that was going on in their lives (they also have 3 kids). I told her if there was ever anything I or our college group could do to help out to please let me know. Of course it took about 2 second before she took me up on the offer! Turns out Kelly has about 80 guys under his command and Rachael wanted to bake some cookies and treats to send over for all of them to enjoy during the holidays. (The Army Reserve operates a little differently then the regular military branches in that they don't have quite the same network or support system.)
I was more then happy to offer the help of our group and got straight to work. She found out that the last day possible to get the packages out was December 8th, and that would mean they'd make it in time for Christmas, but we were shooting to get them out a bit sooner then that. I send out some emails to our group and got a great response. And then I of course mapped out my own baking tactic and made my plans to commence baking upon my return from Washington!
The calm before the storm
In total I ended up baking about 34 dozen cookies (though one kind turned out terrible and didn't make the cut). Monday night I did the shopping and made 4 dozen white chocolate chip cookies and one batch of toffee (which ended up serving as fuel for the rest of my baking endeavor).
It starts with 1 dozen
Then grows to 3
Tuesday I baked 4.5 dozen toffee/chocolate cookies, 5 dozen butterscotch oatmeal cookies, and 2 dozen pecan shortbread cookies (these didn't make the cut). And along with that a good friend came over and brought some fudge she'd already made and baked about 4 dozen chocolate chip cookies.
5.5 dozen Butterscotch Oatmeal
Wednesday I made 10.5 dozen double chocolate chip cookies and 7.5 sugar cookies. Wednesday I made the most; 18 dozen cookies. It took more then 4 hours to get it all done; and upon hearing that my friend Isaac was not only rendered speechless, but also said it was like I was doing "endurance baking" - too funny!
10.5 dozen Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies
All in all our group did awesome and I collected about 60 dozen cookies; some fudge and peanut brittle from 9 of us. Along with what Rachael and her friend made each guy will be getting at least 1 dozen cookies each!!!
While 80 dozen cookies sounds like a lot (and it is), I know that compared to the sacrifice these guys are making it's not much. I can only hope that a little taste of home will put a smile on their faces. It's the least we could do to say thank you