Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Pecan Tossies and the Gift Exchange



Mary Hunt is my girl. I look forward to reading her column in the paper every day – it’s always my favorite article. The other day I read this one, giving a recipe for these delightful little yummies called Pecan Tossies. Today is our annual faculty gift exchange party and I was thinking of not going because it means I have to leave my kids in daycare an extra hour and I have to come up with some snack treats to bring to the party. After I saw this recipe I thought “I can do that with GF flour and they might taste like pecan pie! Maybe I should go to that party after all…” I am not going to the other after work faculty party and I get such a kick out of our gift exchange. So I made an extra stop at the grocery store for pecans and cream cheese and borrowed my mom’s little tart pans and made them last night. One of the things I thought I would never taste again in this life, after learning I have Celiac disease and can’t have wheat flour any more, is pecan pie. Um um um I love me some pecan pie. *tears* These are heaven.

The gift exchange is a hoot. Everyone brings a wrapped $15 gift and puts them in a pile in the middle of the circle. Each person gets a number. Person #1 chooses a gift to open. Person #2 can then take person #1’s gift or choose another gift to open. Person #3 can take either of those or choose another gift to open. The rules are that you can’t take back a gift that was just taken from you and each gift can only change hands three times before it is permanent. Presents get swapped around all over the room with much teasing, joking and laughter. You see another whole side of your friends and coworkers, as some of us are quite competitive and others concerned with peace-keeping. Some of us just like to keep the game going by taking the most popular gifts… My favorite part is that many of my colleagues make jewelry, ceramics, knitted items or other crafts for their gifts and they are beautiful. The gift I am bringing this year is for the kitchen. It’s wrapped in snowflake fabric gift bag I made after reading another one of Mary Hunts columns on simplifying your holiday gift giving. That year I made dozens of fabric gift bags and use them to wrap gifts for family and friends. Love ya, Mary Hunt!


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5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Omigosh, these look delicious! My mom used to make these all the time, I love them - I like them better than pecan pie because the ratio of crust to filling makes them less sweet.

Yum! Wishing I could pull one right out of the photo - I need to look for the recipe and make a batch!

Anonymous said...

Yes, these look AWESOME and remind me of sticky buns, one of my favorite baked goods EVER. I should try to make them sometime. So, did you get a good gift in the end? Were you competitive? I think those gift exchanges are SO much fun! I haven't participated of one in years, though...

joy said...

You're gift exchange sounded fun! I've wondered what it'd be like if, when doing this, the gifts stayed wrapped through out the exchanges. Maybe the wrapping would become competitive? Or simple wrapping could hold the best gift?

Then again, you're beautiful fabric gift bags would still be popular!

joy said...

P.S. I'd love to see pictures of your fabric gift bags.

cloudscome said...

LOL you girls ar so funny. I was wondering if anyone would ask what I got! I took someone else's gift. It was a set of a mug and cocoa and little marshmellows. I thought I would give it to Buster when he comes home from college next week, but then I remembered I needed a gift for Punkin's baby gym teacher so I am giving it to her. Re-gifting... another whole topic for blogging! :)

The wrapping IS competative, in an understated way. We always talk a lot about the beautiful wrapping and everyone picks the gift they open by carefully considering the wrapping. It's funny to try to guess what kind of gift is in different styles of wrapping. I learn so much about my colleagues in this whole event. One teacher came yesterday that has never come before. She brought an extra gift as a "white elephant" and said that at the end anyone who wanted could exchange their gift for the extra one, and then another person could exchange theirs... it really threw a wrench in our usual process. We had to work as a group creatively to figure out how to make up new rules to manage the extra gift. An ethnologist's field day!