Quick, clever, crunchy gifts to make with grandchildren

This past weekend was a party-filled one for this grandma. Sunday was my family's annual cookie swap and Saturday was the Chex Party Mix Party.

The Chex what? you ask.

The Chex Party Mix Party was a special blogging event I was invited to in which several bloggers from the Denver area were filled in on how to make and gift — yes, gift! — Chex mix goodies in a variety of flavors. And, of course, we got to taste the crunchy stuff, too.

I honestly had never thought of doing such a thing, but after attending the Chex Party Mix Party and seeing how quick (15 minutes tops) and easy the Chex mix gifts are, I came up with a variety of folks to whom I'll give them this year. The yummy, crunchy packages make great teacher gifts, but as I don't have any teachers on my list, my neighbors, mailman, garbage men and more will be on the receiving end of all I learned at the Chex Party Mix Party.

When I first arrived in the Park Meadows Mall food court where the party was to take place, I immediately saw the special Chex Party Mix booth. I set out taking photos of it and the gift wrapping section where we bloggers were to see how cute and clever the Chex Party Mix gifts could be when complete. (Jim had come along, too, to visit with Andrea, who lives in the area and planned to hang out with Dad while I did my partying.)

Chex Party Mix booth

Chex Party Mix party

Once all the bloggers arrived, we set to work. The group was divided in half, with half wrapping up Chex Party Mix gift packages and half learning from and making with the Chex Party Mix crew three top holiday favorites: Chex Pumpkin Pie Crunch, Sugar Cookie Chex Party Mix and Mexican Hot Chocolate Chex Party Mix.

I was in the group first making the recipes, and Andrea volunteered her photography skills to help out her Chex Mix-ing mother:

Chex Party Mix party 

Then we swapped tasks and my group wrapped up the goodies in a variety of festive and fun ways. I admit that in between wrapping and ribboning, I tasted and tasted... and tasted.

 Chex Party Mix gifts

As a grandma blogger, my primary take away from the Chex Party Mix party was that it would be fun for grandparents to gather the grandkids and together make batches of quick, clever, crunchy gifts for their teachers or others, even their friends, maybe Mom and Dad, too. The recipes are super simple and require only a microwave, no oven or stove. There's a fair amount of easy measuring, pouring and stirring — which we all know kids love to help with. The nice thing is the recipes don't have to be perfectly measured, don't have to be perfectly stirred.

The recipes we bloggers tried at the Chex Party Mix Party are a great place to start sampling the options. You can see PDF versions of the recipes here: Sugar Cookie Chex Party Mix, Chex Pumpkin Pie Crunch and Mexican Hot Chocolate Chex Party Mix. I plan to soon try the Red Velvet Chex Party Mix, which the Chex folks gave me permission to share (plus three others) in my Holiday Guide.

Plus, there are more than 150 Chex Party Mix recipes the can be made in the microwave in just 15 minutes at ChexPartyMix.com. It would be fun to come up with your own recipes with the grandkids, too, based on flavors the family favors (say that three times fast!).

Other cool holiday ideas from the Chex Party Mix team — in addition to boxing and bagging up gifts for teachers, neighbors and to reciprocate with folks surprising you with a small gift — include these:

  • Set up a Chex Party Mix tasting bar at your holiday parties by filling cookie jars with different party mix recipes, then adding a small scoop and including a stack of mini baggies nearby for filling.
  • Make a crunchy cupcake tree for the holiday buffet table using cupcake liners filled with Chex Party Mix set upon a cupcake stand.
  • Start a "Pass the Mix" tradition by purchasing a festive covered bowl, filling with your favorite Chex Party Mix recipe and passing it along to a friend. Include instructions to, after enjoying the snack, make a batch to fill the bowl and pass along to another friend.

Disclosure: I was compensated for attending the Chex Party Mix Party but was not obligated to write a post on it. The gift idea was so quick and clever, though, I felt compelled to share it with my favorite readers.

Today's holiday-themed fill-in-the-blank:

One especially memorable gift I received from a child was ________ from _________.