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Tis the Season {GIVEAWAY}

posted Monday Nov 29, 2010 at 02:20 PM by Anne Yorks — 24 comments

*A quick note about holiday cookie orders - We are in FULL holiday cookie production mode! Yippee!! You are welcome to view our six holiday collections by clicking here. We are making a lot of cookies, but we will have a fixed number of orders available for each collection that we will produce by Christmas. If you want to order now, but have the cookies ship at a later date, please email Anne Yorks at anne@flourboxbakery.com. We would be happy to make that happen for you!*

Tis the Season for _______________. How do you fill in this blank?

I think it could be:

Tis the Season for GIVING!

Tis the Season for BAKING!


Tis the Season for FAMILY and FRIENDS! 

To celebrate the season of giving and to celebrate 500 fans on the Flour Box Facebook page, I am hosting a giveway! Read below to enter!!!

But first, here are a few more recent cookie projects...

Happy Teeth Cookies for a special girl that recently got her braces off. 

A special Penn State cookie order. This was a project I made for my friends on the Beaver Stadium Jumbotron crew. I don't sell these cookies. The license to sell Penn State logo items is thousands of dollars! Not in the FBB budget. Plus, the approval process is quite involved. I'm not sure I'd ever make enough to recoup the costs. 

My friends loved the cookies. I really had fun making them too! The guy that asked me to make the cookies wanted them for crew appreciation day. So I made a few cookies that said, "Thank you". But I put the logo in place of the 'O' in you. I also made football jerseys. The 22 is significant because it is Evan Royster's number. A star player on the team this year.

I did a few oval logo cookies and some polka dot paw print cookies.

Then I did my favorites, a Joe Paterno cookie and a Nittany Lion cookie. Joe didn't turn out quite as expected, but I was super pleased with the lion! He's cute!!

Just before Thanksgiving I had two Baptism orders.

Christening Dresses...

The tiny ribbons made this a special cookie...

Here are the dresses all 'dressed' with ribbons and ready to ship...

For the second baptism, I made sheep cookies. This cookie design was inspired by a pair of jammies my little girl had when she was only a few months old. I loved them so much I turn the sheep into a cookie! I love the pink curly accents!

These monkey face cookies went all the way to Spain! A really sweet mom ordered these for her son's birthday. Funny thing, we went to Penn State at the same time and graduated with similar degrees. We both think each other looks familiar, but can't pinpoint if we actually knew each other. I love funny little connections like that. 

A special order of flowers for a sympathy gift. My heart goes out to the recipient. I hope these cookies brought a smile to her face.

And a congratulations order with a few custom blue ribbons...

And horses (this is sort of what the winning horse looked like)...

Ok, here is how to enter the giveaway...

Since it's the Season for Giving...please leave a comment on this blog post with how you plan to give back. It can be ANYTHING...a plate of cookies for your neighbor, a couple dollars for the Salvation Army Bell Ringers, a gift for Toys for Tots, a gift from Samaritan's Purse ... you get the idea. Big or small we can all do something.

Here's what I'm giving away, a total of three different gifts for three different winners...

1. One Free Box of Holiday Cookies - my favorite collection...The Very Merry Christmas!

2. A Free copy of the CD Here from singer/songwriter Tim Shutes

3. A Free copy of GoingLOCAL: Volume 2 written by Ken Hull (best for PA residents).

No purchase to enter. This is just for fun. I will ship to US addresses only. 

ENTER BY Saturday, December 4th. The three winners will be announced on Sunday, December 5th. Good Luck and Have Fun!


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So Much to Say, So Little Time!!

posted Sunday Nov 28, 2010 at 02:37 PM by Anne Yorks — 5 comments

*A quick note about holiday cookie orders - We are in FULL holiday cookie production mode! Yippee!! You are welcome to view our six holiday collections by clicking here. We are making a lot of cookies, but we will have a fixed number of orders available for each collection that we will produce by Christmas. If you want to order now, but have the cookies ship at a later date, please email Anne Yorks at anne@flourboxbakery.com. We would be happy to make that happen for you!*

Is life NUTS at your house and work? It is here

I wish I had hours to blog, but life is happening and I don't. I don't think I can cram all my updates into this one post, but I'll do as much as I have time for and then I'll post again tomorrow or another time really, really soon.

I hope you had an amazing Thanksgiving! I did. Thanks to my mom, I had a very relaxing day. She cooked a wonderful dinner this year. I love my mom so much. I am thankful for many, many blessings, but this year, I was extra thankful for my mommy.

I still feel pretty stuffed from all the good eats. Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, croissants, apple pie, and salad. We brought (Topher made it while I NAPPED for the first time in a very long time) Maple Glazed Roasted Vegetables. It was the star of the show! Rave reviews are guaranteed. Topher's mom made this a few times and shared the recipe with me. You won't be disappointed.

I debated on whether to share this photo with you. You see, this was my lunch yesterday. The very last of the veggies. It's been reheated at least 4 times and is now quite mushy. But the flavors were still so, so delicious. Since I hate to post a recipe without a photo...here you go. Just keep in mind the first version (eaten on Turkey day) was a lot less mushed up.

Maple Glazed Roasted Vegetables

1-1/2 lbs brussel sprouts, trimmed and cut in half
1 large red onion, peeled and cut in one inch pieces (about 2 1/2 cups) 
1 large acorn squash (about 2 pounds), halved, peeled, seeded, cut in 1/2 inch pieces 
1 1b parsnips, cut into 1 inch pieces (about 3 cups) 
2 tsp Herbs de provence 
1/4 cup olive oil 
salt and pepper to taste 

Toss with oil and herbs. arrange onlarge baking sheet. Roast 450 degrees about 35 min or until knife tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from oven and drizzle with glaze. Roast 5-8 minutes. Garnish with parsley. 

1/4 cup butter 
1/2 cup maple syrup 
1/2 cup light brown sugar 
1/2 cup toasted pecan halves 

On medium heat in saucepan combine above ingredients. 

Just a side note - we added in cauliflower, broccoli, and substituted the parsnips with carrots and sweet potatoes. Yum! Yum! It was awesome!

Do you know what else is awesome? 

I'm up to 503 fans on the Flour Box Facebook page. I posted a question to the fans...how should I celebrate? Free cookies is what they told me. I wasn't going to do that since I just gave away (and shipped) four free Halloween gifts. But I'm a sucker for having fun and now I'm working on a holiday giveaway to celebrate. I'll have the details pulled together soon. I hope it won't disappoint. Stay tuned! 

I hope everyone enjoyed their Thanksgiving orders! It's a shame turkey time is over. I really enjoyed making these cookies! 

Thanks to all my Thanksgiving customers! We sold out both collections (the turkeys and the harvest collection).  I hope they made everyone's turkey day just a little sweeter!

Just before Thanksgiving, I also completed a custom order for a company's end-of-year clients gifts. I did 115 dozen boxes of cookies for them to send to their clients. They are veterinarian consultants, so they requested a cookie with the veterinary caduceus symbol.

What a cool cookie, but time consuming! Thankfully, the boxes only included two of these in the assortment! Since the orders were shipped before Thanksgiving, there were also leaves in the box (not pictured because I was rushed for time).

I delivered this order just days before Thanksgiving. Once it was complete, I felt like a ton of bricks had been lifted off my shoulders.

Just before Thanksgiving I also had the opportunity to make a custom order for the Penn State Alumni Association. My customer sent them to the PSAA as a thank you. Of course I always want to do my best work, but because this order was sent to the Executive Director, I wanted them to be perfect. My client was a new friend I met at a Penn State tailgate. Since so much of my business is repeat clients, I always like to make a good first impression so that I build a relationship of continued orders.

So I got to work on the cookies. He wanted football cookies with a PSAA cookie too. I finished the order and then realized I put PSSA on the cookies. UGH. I took a moment for a meltdown, then got back to work remaking the cookies. It wasn't funny then, but now I can smile about it. I'm just glad the mistake was discovered before the cookies went out the door. 

And here they are packed up and ready to get delivered. All cookies are packed in a heat-sealed bag with an FBB logo label on the back. If the order is for favors (event, birthday, wedding, etc), the bags are tied with a satin ribbon.

I was told that the cookies were placed in the breakroom and it took exactly 17 minutes for 2 dozen cookies to be eaten. Cool. Love those real time stats.

Here is one other project that happened to pop up during this busy time.

A custom collection that I donated to a Geri Reeve Ovarian/Breast Cancer Fundraiser. The event was held at the Seven Mountains Winery. The event coordinator was wonderful to work with (she is a friend of a friend). She asked for wine bottles and glasses, grapes, and pink and teal ribbons.

I decided to put the Seven Mountains Wine Cellar logo on the bottles to make it a little more personal. Here is the logo...


Here is a close-up of the cookies...the grapes are cute. This took some time because the icing has to be decorated (with time in-between to dry) in layers.

I added some clear sugar to the glasses to make it look like the glass had condensation. 

I have more cookie pictures to share, but I think this is it for today. Getting all this stuff done has not been an easy feat when you consider I also have a family and house to take care of. After all, these other orders are going on while I'm trying to get the 115 dozen out the door and the Thanksgiving cookies. So while in the midst of the cookie craziness, one of the things that has saved me is my new coffee maker. Our last one took an entire hour to brew. No joke. We bought a new coffee maker and it worked for a week, then it went kaput. Then we got the Bunn. 

I just have to say. Nothing Brews Like A Bunn. I can barely survive on a few hours of sleep a night. On low sleep my jokes are flat, my immune system goes to crap, my mommy skillz are reduced to shadow puppets in the closet, and my homemaker skills go from homemade to takeout. Seriously. This was reality the past couple of weeks.

Enter The Bunn, my new best friend.

This guy brews coffee in less than 3 minutes!!

Now even on no sleep, I'm peppy. I'm not poping out of parties and I don't think I'm un-poopular. Anyone get this reference? ;)

This is just a short term fix. After the holidays, I plan to resume my normal eat, sleep and exercise routine. Until then, bring on the coffee.

Time's up blog friends - I have to wrap this up. I still have several more orders to share, plus a BRAND new birthday collection I can't wait to add to the site!

More coming soon!


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Santa's List and More

posted Monday Nov 15, 2010 at 08:42 AM by Anne Yorks — 1 comments

Did you make your Christmas shopping list yet? I haven't. I have ideas, but I really need to get things on paper and get moving. Thankfully both Bellefonte and State College are packed with wonderful, independently owned shops that provide unique gifts and service unparalleled at larger, box stores. In Bellefonte, I plan to visit Co2 Boutique, The Victorian Rose, and Pure Imagination. In State College, I hope to check out Animal Kingdom, Growing Tree Toys, Appalachian Outdoors, and a few of the Penn State shops. I really enjoy Christmas shopping, and usually a cup of coffee from Cool Beans (Bellefonte) or Saints Cafe (State College) makes it even more fun! Just curious - where do you like to go? I'm always looking for new ideas!

In case you are making your list, here are a few gift ideas that are perfect for friends and family of all ages. 

Santa's List Cookie Gift

Who's been nice? And who's been a naughty? (in case you're wondering, that 'Patti' on the naughty list is my mom. Heh. Heh. She got a good chuckle out of that!) This gift is CUSTOMIZABLE!! 

Have fun this Christmas Season with the 'Santa's List' Cookie Gift! Make your list and check it twice, then decide who goes on the 'Nice List' and who goes on the 'Naughty List'! CUSTOMIZE each list with up to four names each by Contacting Us (click Here) with your names and order number. Each cookie is hand-rolled and hand-iced with great care. This collection includes 12 cookies: 1 Santa, 1 Nice List, 1 Naughty List, 2 Coal Stockings, 4 medium Christmas gifts, and 3 small Christmas gifts.

Blue Snowflakes Cookie Gift

Warm up the holidays with this delicious and adorable snowflake collection. Each snowflake is uniquely decorated with lots of detail! This collection includes 16 cookies: 6 large snowflakes, 4 medium snowflakes, and 6 bite-size snowflakes!

For right now, this collection is available in blue, but I hope to offer more colors soon (maybe in January 2011)

Very Merry Christmas Cookie Gift

Sweeten up the holidays with this Very Merry Christmas Cookie Gift! Great as a gift for a long distance friend or for the host at a holiday party! This collection includes 14 cookies: 2 Christmas Trees, 2 Christmas Presents, 2 Ornaments, 2 Bells, 2 Holly Leaves, 2 Doves, and 2 Snowmen.

Hello from the snowmen!!

White Peace Dove Cookies

The whole crew all together! Do you like the Christmas Tree in the front? A little funky and a little fun!

Please keep in mind that I will be making fixed quantities for each Christmas collection. Once they are sold out, they will no longer be available in time for Christmas. Because Christmas is the busiest cookie season of the year, I'll be kicking my cookie production into turboboost!!! I can sleep in January, right? So hopefully there will be enough Flour Box Cookies to go around!

Are you doing your Christmas shopping now? Feel free to pre-order your cookies now and request to have them shipped in December. You are welcome to email me with any order questions at anne@flourboxbakery.com or complete the form on the 'Contact Us' page.

View all the Christmas and Winter Cookie Collections by clicking here to the product page!

Thanks and have a sweet day,


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100th Blog Post

posted Sunday Nov 14, 2010 at 11:52 AM by Anne Yorks — 4 comments

Blog Post #100 sneaked up on me! I had been so buried with Halloween orders. Now I'm working on a custom corporate holiday order for 120 dozen cookies! Since I'm (thankfully) up to my eyeballs in cookies, I wasn't paying attention to time and now here I am. I just can't believe that I made it to 100! I'm no JoePa at 400, though. So I guess I'll just keep blogging away and putting my time in. Time flies when you're having fun!

To celebrate this bloggie milestone, I will introduce you to three of six NEW Christmas and Winter cookie gifts! I love this time of year! I really enjoyed planning these collections! I hope you like them too!

The Nativity Scene Cookie Collection


This is one of my favorite collections that I have created for this year. I have fond memories of setting up our family Nativity scene each Christmas. 

Celebrate the meaning of the Christmas season with this joyful cookie gift. This collection includes 11 cookies: Baby Jesus, Mary & Joseph, an Angel, 2 Christmas stars, 3 sheep, a cow and a donkey.

O Tanenbaum Cookie Collection

O Christmas Tree, brings to us both joy and glee! This colorful and bright cookie gift will delight kids from 1 to 92!! This collection includes 12 cookies: 1 large Christmas Tree with a cookie star at the top, 3 Christmas Lights, 8 Christmas Ornaments.

Snowmen and Snowflake Cookie Collection

These happy-go-lucky snowmen are the perfect way to beat the winter blues. They are well-dressed with a coordinating hat, scarf, and mittens. This collection includes 12 cookies: 6 well-dressed snowmen, 3 snowmen with hats, and 3 uniquely decorated snowflakes!

I love the mittens. They just make the cookie for me. 

Please keep in mind that I will be making fixed quantities for each Christmas collection. Once they are sold out, they will no longer be available in time for Christmas. Because Christmas is the busiest cookie season of the year, I'll be kicking my cookie production into turboboost!!! I can sleep in January, right? So hopefully there will be enough Flour Box Cookies to go around!

Are you doing your Christmas shopping now? Feel free to pre-order your cookies now and request to have them shipped in December. You are welcome to email me with any order questions at anne@flourboxbakery.com or complete the form on the 'Contact Us' page.

Three more collections will be released on the blog within the next day or two! I hope to have a new post by Tuesday at the latest. 

Thanks and have a sweet day,


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Best. Day. Ever.

posted Tuesday Nov 09, 2010 at 09:21 AM by Anne Yorks — 3 comments

It's probably no surprise that I'm a HUGE Penn State fan. As a graduate, my heart belongs to Dear Old State. Afterall, my mom and dad went to PSU. My uncle. My brother. My husband. 

Yesterday, I really had a dream come true. My friend and colleague (although, she's really out of my league), Heather Luse invited me to tour the Penn State Bakery! Whoa! What a fantastic opportunity. Penn State + Baked Goods + Me = Heaven!

Here is a picture of Heather and I next to the HUGE artisan bread oven. This thing is gigantic!

Isn't Heather so cute. Heather is the Executive Pastry Chef of the Penn State Bakery. But, you might also recognize her as the official Cake Lady of Centre Hall and the surrounding area! Her company, Delectable Delights, produces some of the most beautiful wedding and event cakes in the area.  



She also does CUPCAKES!!

We went to lunch after my bakery tour and all three of the ladies working at the restaurant were clients of Heather! They just raved and raved and raved about her cakes and decorating skills!! It was so cool!

I really felt honored that Heather would take a few hours out of her busy schedule to show me the Penn State Bakery. 

I took a few photos during my tour. I was drooling all over the ovens, mixers, racks, cookie sheets, sprinkles, cookie cutters! It was all so impressive! 

The Penn State Bakery serves 6 dining halls, the HUB, Otto's and Blue Chip Bistro, Cafe Laura, Java Catering, 11 Commonwealth Campus locations, The Nittany Lion Inn, Penn Stater, BJC, the Creamery, and the Penn State Daycare Centers.

In one year, they make:

89,631 Loaves of Bread                46,356 Pastries

87,726 Muffins                               7,051 Pies

828,812 Rolls                                93,736 Batches of Pizza Dough

19,519 Whoopie Pies                    177,096 Breakfast Pastries

1,547 SHEETS of Brownies           46,356 Mini Desserts

1,444,266 Cookies (wow!)            47,460 Cupcakes

177,156 Donuts                            and 4,456 pounds of icing!!!

This is just one day's orders!

A monster mixer - making bread dough.

The artisan bread oven.

Bread dough rising in a separate, humidity-controlled room.

Tarts being made in 'specialty desserts' section of the bakery.

I was so excited to see some cut-out cookies for Veterans Day. 

Luster Dust Galore!

Containers and containers of cookie cutters. 

HUGE boxes of sugar crystals. Wowza! That's a lot of bling!

A rack oven. The bakery rack is lifted up by a hook in the oven and rotated for even baking. I love this oven!!

I personally love the Penn State Chocolate Chip Cookies! They are amazing! The PSU Bakery produces both the cookies and the dough to delivered to their clients. That way, the dining commons, etc, can bake their own cookies (using the bakery dough) and serve them up warm to the students. It's the Blue & White way to eat a cookie!!

In case you are wondering, the PSU bakery has a super neat recipe computer program. Each recipe is assigned a number. When getting ready to make an order, Heather can put in the number of pounds she needs to fill the order. In this case, she needed 620 pounds of Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough. Let that sink in for a minute. 620 pounds!!!

It takes a lot of ingredients and organization to make this operation work smoothly. The warehouse is gigantic and basically has everything and more than a grocery store. There is a refrigerated space and a non-refrigerated space. Fork lifts whizzed in and out of aisles collecting needed ingredients. 

Just to give you an idea of it's size. The warehouse has more than 2,600 items on inventory, and throughout the year distributes 1,675,000 packets of ketchup, 469,892 pounds of French fries, and 431,920 pounds of cheese.  This one warehouse services 48 residence halls!

The bakery is definitely a team operation. Certain people are assigned to weigh and prep ingredients. Then someone else mixes them. Then someone else bakes, decorates, etc. Everyone was buzzing with activity while I was touring. And even though things were big and busy, everyone was still very friendly. 

I didn't get to see the Nittany Lion that day, but it looks like he is also a huge fan of yummy treats too!

I hope you enjoyed the virtual tour through the bakery. Thank you to Heather for making my trip so special! I really enjoyed everything! 

For the glory,


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