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Baked Goods as Gifts For Teachers, Etc.

Jumping on the other thread about baked goods as gifts for co-workers, I have a list of school teachers, music teacher, martial arts teacher, etc and I cannot afford to buy each of them a gift card this year. I usually make up gift baskets from Trader Joe's, but that usually works out to about $20 per basket and is still expensive since I need a number of them. I was thinking about baking cookies, brownies or ginger bread and putting them in a holiday basket with maybe a box of chocolates from TJ's. Is this OK or would it look cheap? I really like to get homemade treats as a gift, but
not sure everyone agrees.

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  1. Honestly, it would never occur to me to start handing out gift cards to teachers. I see nothing cheap about sending homemade baked goodies. I always did. Then one year we made some kind of cinnamon scented cookie Christmas tree ornaments that were well received. Try not to worry about what they'll think.

    5 Replies
    1. re: miss_belle

      The motivation I usually see for that is that you can give them a gift card to something like Staples that they can spend on supplies for the classroom - teachers tend to spend a lot of their own money on supplies.

      1. re: miss_belle

        Wouldn't you kind of want to worry about what the recipient of a gift might think, though?

        1. re: Hobbert

          Not after reading this thread and boy am I glad that's all behind me now.

          1. re: miss_belle

            I just meant that it seems like considering what someone might want/need is a part of gift giving. That's all.

            1. re: Hobbert

              I come from a family where homemade Christmas cookies were considered a safe bet for people you don't know that well. I doubt I'd ever give a teacher a gift card.

              Like I said ~ glad those days are behind me:-)

      2. Kat, The trend I am most grateful for is pooling resources in situations like this. When every parent places something into the gift basket and the teacher receives a collective gift, I'm a good deal more comfortable with gifting educators. School teachers have how many kids in their class?

        Music, martial arts, etc. you already pay them for your child's private lessons? I'd say a hand signed note by everyone in the class and perhaps a small holiday themed gift from everyone is the way to go.

        I enjoy giving gifts. But I do think givers over think the idea.

        1. Does your list also include allergies of each individual for whom you will be baking? In today's society, there are just too many people with allergies or sensitivities. But I know of know one that is allergic to gift cards. That being said, if you can't afford gifts, there is no shame in not giving gifts to everyone your child knows.

          1 Reply
          1. re: wadejay26

            Food gifts are still okay. People who have food allergies know to enquire about ingredients. Most are likely gracious enough to not be upset if you inadvertently gave them cookies to which they are allergic.

          2. Last year I made a big batch of granola with lots of different nuts, dried fruits and coconut flakes, different seeds...put them in the Weck containers. Everyone LOVED it. The beauty of granola is that their storage life is longer than baked goods.

            http://www.crateandbarrel.com/weck-ca...

            1 Reply
            1. re: Monica

              I've discovered that granola is a great teacher's gift!

              My daughter has ten teachers this year, so even if I buy each a $10 gift card, that's $100, which is not pocket change for me. (By comparison, we set a $100 limit on our daughter's Christmas presents, and I think it's reasonable that her collective teachers' presents come below that.) So, I made granola and packed it in Ball jars. The reaction has been wonderful! My favorite reaction was from the teacher who told my daughter she felt very smug eating homemade granola with plain yogurt for breakfast. Now I'm feeling smug. I've decided homemade granola is the perfect economical gift that doesn't look cheap.

            2. the Assistance League in town no longer has tin holiday containers becuz someone bought them all ;:-/
              no worry though they have so many to put out as soon as they disappear. I'll be going to buy more as soon as they open @ 10. they are always under a buck. yesterday I started my holiday baking that I put in zipper bags (then freeze) until ready to assemble....they then get disbursed in the various tins.
              vendors/store fronts/markets etc. we frequent get a gift.

              just a suggestion.