Sunday, May 22, 2011

End of Year Teacher Gifts

This is the last week of preschool. WHAT?! Goes fast when you start in September and end in May, unlike public schools. Snuck up on me a little when one of the other class Moms emailed about a donation for a group gift. I will be giving my $10 for sure - Ginger's teacher has been AMAZING - but I wanted to give something from us as well. So I reviewed this and this post from 2009 to help me decide.

We gave her movie passes and a mall gift card at Christmas. Also she is stylish so I would never presume to pick out an accessory for her. I know she has middle-school-ish kids, so I looked around my house, and Amazon (shockingly few Listmanias with non-cheesey teacher gift ideas), trying to think of something thoughtful, useful, and fun for her and her family this summer.

I decided to get her my favorite popsicle mold and cookbook that I loved last summer and am looking forward to again as our first real heat wave descends. I wouldn't get a big cookbook for someone, like baking, grilling, 30-minute meals, etc. unless I knew their culinary interest better, but everyone likes popsicles, and everyone can make them! Doesn't take up horizontal space (like a plant), doesn't require any special equipment (except the mold), or skill (except reading), and it seems like something older children might enjoy as well. I will have Ginger make a hand-drawn bookmark and we'll put it by her favorite recipe (probably that fancy sundae on the cover.)I have struggled with teacher gifts for years, but I'm pretty confident about this one. Pretty sure I'll be getting the same for Hazel's teachers in June.

How about you - what are your teachers getting this year? Or if you are one, what are the best gifts? Parents like me always need more ideas.


-Sydney- said...

I was looking at that book on Amazon recently but it had mixed reviews--some saying the pops were overly complicated and not very good. Others saying they were the most amazing thing ever. It's hard to know when the opinions are so polarized! Are you in the "amazing" boat?

This year I gave the teachers pancake mix from a local company and home-jarred strawberry syrup. I packed it in a cute little basket tied up with a polka-dot ribbon. The syrup was actually jam I made a while back that didn't set up properly but it ended up being really awesome syrup!

Disco Mom said...

I LOVE the pancake mix idea - that is going on my list! It's great because it's consumable, so it doesn't take up space, but at the person's leisure, unlike cookies that will go stale. Genius!

As for the POPS book, I think I'm more in the "amazing" camp. It gives me what I want in a popsicle book, which is flavor ideas/combinations I wouldn't come up with on my own, and a range of difficulty from simple to complex. There is a bit of everything, for any palate and level. If you want a simple pop, there are lots that are very straightforward - example: Apricot Pops are made with water, sugar, apricot nectar and fresh apricots. Make a simple syrup, cool it, combine with apricot nectar and apricots, put in molds, freeze. Lots of very simple ones like that. Plus every recipe has variation ideas, like Apricot & Basil or Apricot & Cherry, plus it tells the yield which is helpful since all molds are different sizes. If you are looking for complicated, you can find that, too, like the Cookie Dough Pops, in which you make your own cookie dough, bake some of it into cookies, stir the rest into vanilla ice cream, then make cookie ice cream sandwiches on a stick with it all. An all-day project! And of course just for us Mormons there is a whole chapter on coffe & tea pops and another on cocktail pops, but I've come to expect a lot of coffee & booze recipes in cookbooks so I don't care. I still found it totally worth the $10 for the first 4 chapters: Health Energy Pops (example: Green Apple & Flax Seed Pops), Fruit Juice Pops (ex: Kiwi Pops), Soda Fountain Pops (ex: Strawberry Soda Pops) and Cream & Pudding Pops(ex: Coconut Cream Yogurt Pops.)

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