Church hosts cookie exchange

Tara Tupling, Crystal Kossow, Whitney Lowman, Inessa Martin (in back) and Andrea Lowman select cookies to take home at the Mansfield Community Church Christmas cookie exchange. (Empire Press photo/Adrienne Douke)


By Adrienne Douke
Empire Press Correspondent

The Mansfield Community Church held its annual ladies luncheon and cookie exchange Dec. 8.

The event began with a buffet luncheon of ham-wrapped pickled asparagus, Vienna sausages in barbecue sauce, a cheese tray, olives, salad, rolls and spinach artichoke dip. Beverages included coffee and water.

After the meal, the group of 25 women got in a circle and each introduced herself, saying how she came to Mansfield. It quickly became apparent that the majority of the group came to Mansfield because, “I married a farmer…”

Nancy Harshaw, wife of Pastor LeRoy Harshaw, then read from scripture about the importance of salt — not only in our food — but in our lives.

“We want to keep our spiritual lives salty,” Harshaw emphasized.

Cookie exchanges are a time-honored holiday tradition in many places and Mansfield preserves its Christmas traditions, too.

“We all look forward to it each year,” Harshaw said.

Participants in the exchange each brought two dozen cookies and then picked out 24 from among all those displayed on the table.

This gave every guest a wide assortment to choose from including peanut butter, chocolate chip and ginger bread cookies, frosted cookies with holiday sprinkles, whoopie cookies and bar cookies.

Co-organizer Harshaw said, “We enjoy putting on the cookie exchange because it gives us a chance to reconnect with old friends and make new ones, share lunch and exchange cookies.”

“It’s a lot of fun for us to get together and have a light lunch, enjoy each other’s company and exchange cookies during the Christmas season,” said church member Tara Tupling.