Goodies In A Box

So, Father’s Day is coming and I wanted to make something for my Daddy that’s good and tasty.  I love making the presentation as special as what I make to eat.  I’ve seen where you can make your own boxes so I wanted to do something like that.  When I think of my Daddy I always think of our home.  He worked hard all his life to make sure we always had a nice house.  So I wanted to make my “goodie boxes” shaped like a house.  I found a template that was actually a birdhouse to use as my base.

Once I got my template I started to add my pictures.  I wanted to add pictures from the years gone by till the present since these are when he worked to make sure there was always a roof over our heads.

Then I changed the effects of the pictures a little and added some “wood” framing to cover any open areas.  This was in PowerPoint using a simple rectangle shape then change the “Shape Fill” to a wood texture.  Then just stretched to fit around each picture.  I also took a rectangle shape and stretched it to fit the “roof” pattern, changed the “Shape Fill” to the texture I like, and placed it over the area that is used for the roof.  I added my loving words so, once folded over the top the the house, would be read on either side.

To add a little color and design I went into “Clip Art” and looked for “ivy” designs.  Then pasted those all around what will be the corners of the house once it’s folded.

I did a second “house” the same way with different pictures so when I print I can print one on 8 1/2 x 11 card stock and print the other one on larger card stock so I have one for small goodies and a larger house for larger goodies.

These are pretty simple to cut out and put together.  The hardest part is sticking the folds together on the inside.  I used clear tape to secure my house.  To add extra strength to my closures and to hide my tape a bit I got some stickers of different kinds of greenery and added that to my boxes.

So, after I experimented with printing these out on larger card stock I wasn’t getting the size I wanted (and needed) to put in my goodies.  I decided to print a box shape where I could print each section then tape them together.

I found a simple box template.

Then I took some of the pictures and added them to the template and resized to fit.  I added the wood texture to keep with my other house box.  This template didn’t have a top to it so I just printed a large sheet with the wood image and cut to fit.

And, just for fun, I made a smaller box for my son, Brandon.  He and Sara don’t have kids yet but they are the best parents of my Grand-Dog, Champ!!

I have each section on a separate slide so when I print I’ll get a large printout.  I can tape all the pieces together and have a box large enough for my cookies.  I added extra squares of the wood images to add to the inside of each section to make it a little more sturdy and look like wood on the inside.  I glued those together and let dry and taped the sections together!  I made up some Mod Podge using a bottle of Elmer’s Glue and the same amount of water.  I pour the glue in a container then fill up the empty glue bottle and pour that into my container then stir.  I painted the Mod Podge on all my sides of my boxes and let dry.

Now to fill ’em up!!  Since one of the boxes is small I needed to make something small to fill up the box.  I love making these sugared pecans (recipe below).  They aren’t too difficult to make but you have to dedicate an hour baking these.  They need to be stirred around every 15 minutes.  That’s really the hardest part.  Once they were done I put them in the smaller house box and tired on the roof.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then for the larger box I wanted to fill it up with different kinds of cookies.  I found 3 wonderful recipes:  Pecan Pie Cookies, Butterfinger Chunk Cookies and Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Cookies.  (Recipes below).

Now that I have all my cookies made it’s time to wrap them up to keep fresh and look nice when my Daddy opens the box.  I just have to slip them into my larger box and close the lid.  I wrapped each bag of cookies with tissue paper to keep them from banging around and breaking.  I also added a jar of Brownie Balls I made and added that to my box.  More on that below.

And then I put on the lid, added a large bow and the tag and was done!

 

Now for my card!!  I like adding something to the card that are pictures of us or something in our lives.  Since I was doing my gifts based on how wonderful my Daddy provided for us and made sure we always have a nice roof over our heads I thought I would use some pictures of that.  I thought I had some pictures of their house but didn’t find them.  I went to Google Map and found their house.  Then I took the little Google Man and put it on street view.  I moved the position around until I found what I wanted and took a Snipit.  I took several different street views of the front so I could make my card look nice and have the meaning in my card of how wonderful my Daddy is.  Of course, you can’t really see the house since it’s down the hill a little but the street view is really beautiful.  Most of the time I take my pictures and wash them out as a watermark but I wanted to have all the color for this card.  Plus I was able to frame the front of the card with the same wood texture as I have for my boxes.  The little raccoon on the back of the card was a picture I took at their house.  They feed a bunch of critters and this guy wanted to be fed that day at that time!!

I made another little card to cut out and was going to put on the front of the envelope but my stickers are too big and I can’t get the card into an envelope.  So, I’ll make this tag to tie onto the box I’ll use for cookies.  I took another one of my shots from the street view and added the wood texture behind it and some wood texture to the side so when I print on both sides it’ll have color on front and back..

And I had to make some tags for the cookies so he’ll know what kind they are…

I found these great stickers that, while they are flowers, they are Man-ly flowers!!  My Daddy knows I have to foo-foo everything so I try not to put pink glitter flowers on his stuff.  But knowing my Daddy, if I wanted to do that then he would be just fine with that, too!!

Once I got my card printed on greeting card stock and all my tags printed on regular card stock I added a some of those stickers for dimension (and fun)!

Now, about those Brownie Balls.  When I was making my Cupcake Burgers, Fries and A pickle the other day I had a lot of extra brownies left from cutting out the “burger”.  And extra frosting!  I hate to waste anything (and my poor husband can only eat so much) so I made some brownie balls mixing my left over brownies and frosting.  I crumbled my brownies in a large bowl and added my frosting, a little at a time, until I got a very moist mixture that held together like cookie dough.  Then I rolled these into a 1-inch ball and covered with clear wrap and put in the fridge.

I let these chill overnight but only needs about an hour or two to firm up enough to work with if you don’t have that much time.  I took some white melting chocolates and microwave for 1 minute, stirred, then microwaved for another 30 seconds.  I stirred until there are no solid pieces.  Then, taking one of my brownies balls, dropped into my melted chocolate, scooped with a fork and tapped off the excess chocolate then onto wax paper.  I repeated this with half the brownie balls.  I melted some milk chocolate the same way as the white and finished dipping the remaining half of the balls in milk chocolate.

After these set I broke off any extra chocolate pieces.  Because it’s hard to completely seal these balls in chocolate at the bottom, I took some yellow melted chocolate and dipped the bottom of the balls.  This completely encased the brownie balls in chocolate to keep them fresh.

I found some jawbreakers at Target a while back in these cute little plastic jars.  I got the jawbreakers for my husband (he loves them) but, when he finished the container I thought about how cute that would be to use for something else.  After I made the brownie balls I remembered those plastic jars.  I had washed them and removed the labels.  I made up my own and printed on large transparent labels.

Once my brownie balls had completely set I put them in the jar, added my labels and stickers on the top.  I’ll give one to my son and one to my Daddy.  My Hubby got the rest of the leftover brownie balls so he was happy!

Now to pack everything up and ready to go!!  I have my extra box for my son and a goodie bag for my Granda-dog, Champ.

Happy Father’s Day, Daddy!!  You are my world and I love you so much!!  Just saying “thanks” is never enough!!

Sugar Coated Pecans:

  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 pound pecan halves
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F (120 degrees C).  Put parchment paper on a large baking pan or cookie sheet.

In a mixing bowl, whip together the egg white and water until frothy.  In a separate bowl, mix together sugar, salt and cinnamon.

Add pecan to the egg whites, stir to coat the nuts evenly.  Remove the nuts and toss them in the sugar mixture until coated.  Spread the nuts out on the prepared baking sheet.

Bake at 250 F (120 C) for 1 hour, stir every 15 minutes during that 1 hour baking time.

Pecan Pie Cookies

For Cookies:

  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder

For Filling:

  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Heat oven to 350 F.  Combine all cookie ingredients except flour and baking powder in large bowl.  Beat at medium speed until creamy.  Reduce speed to low, add flour and baking powder.  Beat until well mixed.

Shape dough into 1 1/4-inch balls.  Place 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheet.  Make an indention in each cookie with your thumb; rotate thumb to hollow out slightly.

Combine all filling ingredients in small bowl; fill each cookie with 1 round teaspoon filling.  Bake for 8 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned.  Cool 1 minute

Butterfinger Chunk Cookies

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups, plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups crushed Butterfinger (about 3 regular-sized bars

Using an electric mixer, beat butter and both sugars in large bowl until well blended.  Add egg and vanilla and beat until fluffy.  Beat in flour, salt and baking soda.  Stir in Butterfinger (dough will be moist).  Chill dough at least 30 minutes and up to an hour.

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Line baking sheets with [parchment paper.  Using 1 rounded tablespoon of dough for each cookie, drop cookie dough in mounds onto prepared baking sheets spacing about 3 inches apart.  Bake about 12 minutes until golden brown.

**NOTE**  These came out  thin and crispy and not chunky.  I crushed my Butterfingers very fine.  I think if you want the cookie to be chunky you need to break these up into chunks.  Although, they really tasted great the way they came out, kind of like a ginger snap cookie.

Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Cookies

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 8 ounces Philadelphia cream cheese, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups Hershey’s Baking Melts

In a mixer, beat together the butter, sugar, brown sugar and cream cheese.  Add egg and vanilla, mix well.

In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, and salt.  Add gradually to butter/sugar mixture, scraping the side of the bowl as you go.

Remove mixer from stand and fold in baking melts.

Scoop by rounded tablespoons onto parchment or silicon lined baking sheets.  Bake at 350 F for 9-10 minutes until the edges look set.  Let cook on baking sheets for a few minutes before moving to cooling rack.