As far as human resources go it’s primarily just me. Most years I do all of it. This year Mr. R assisted a lot. He was a big help when packaging the (over 70) caramels and wrapping the cookies. I always think packaging is just a detail but it actually takes approximately forever.
It’s important to make sure that you have enough cookie sheets for this. In the past I’ve done it with two (do not recommend) and also with two good ones and two crappy ones (better, still not recommended). This year I sprung for two more high quality cookie sheets for a total of four and I bought three more cooling racks for a total of six. I also have two sets of measuring cups and spoons. I also use silpat mats to line my cookie sheets — nothing sticks and I don’t have to bother with cutting parchment paper. This makes for slightly expensive equipment. This project can absolutely be done with just stuff from the grocery store, but if you want to invest in some slightly better cooking equipment it will be used well doing this.
Regarding shipping supplies, I use flat rate boxes from the US Postal Service. Inside them I have an interior paper box, lots of bubble wrap, and a letter or card explaining the contents. For cookies to family (who also get presents) I toss the presents in too. Flat rate FTW! You can get the USPS boxes at any post office for free or if you plan ahead like I never do you can even have them deliver them to you (again, for free). The box itself is free, but flat rate shipping is $13.43 (in 2016).
The interior box I have in the past bought from craft stores, but this year I bought a package of 100 from a paper packaging store online. I now have an endless amount of paper boxes, but it did get the cost down to only $0.58 per box.
This year my grocery cost was pretty low, at only around $60, or $4.29 per box. When in doubt: buy extra sugar and flour.
This year my costs looked like this (this is the third tab of my spreadsheet).
Every year, when I’m doing it, I wonder why I put myself through this. But then I watch the tracking on the boxes (as they go to Idaho, Washington, New York, DC, Chicago, West Coast, East Coast) and see my friends post about getting cookies and it’s just the best. And a year later that’s mostly what I remember and…we do it again!
© THE SPICE OF COOKING. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.