3 FUN First Day of School Traditions

posted on August 16, 2012 by  |  posted under Back to School, Fun With Kids, Traditions  |  52 Comments

3 fun first day of school traditions

remember this post?…

How Does She help her kids feel

EXTRA special

on their first day of school?

Many of my friends and I have adopted Emily’s


tradition from when she was a little girl so here she is to tell you all about it…


Summer is almost over, and that means school is starting!
New Teachers,
new classmates,
new school supplies,
new school clothes,
and even new schools!
No matter which grade your kid is going into, the first day always seems to be
a little scary, mostly fun, and always a big deal!
At my house, when I was a kid, the first day of grade one* was the biggest deal of all!
This is because my mom made,

The Big Giant Cookie!

3 fun first day of school traditions
(Insert by Missy: I had to throw this one in – check out this bike!!!  I want it. And Emily looks cute.)
3 fun first day of school traditions
I can’t believe that I’m willingly showing you that picture,
but it really was cool coming home from my first day of school to my very own
“Big Giant Cookie!”
After watching my three older brothers get their grade one cookie,
it definately was everything my little six year old self could have dreamed of!
Actually, let’s be honest, I didn’t really remember my older brothers getting their grade one cookies,
but I had seen the pictures!
Now that I have kids,
I think my mom was actually celebrating that
one more of her little tykes was going into
At least that’s what I was celebrating when I did it for my first kid.
When Missy asked me to do this post with her I thought-
“But I don’t have a first grader to make the cookie for!
My mom only did it when we went to grade one!
I can’t break the tradition!”
Then I decided it could be fun to do every year.
But I still wasn’t sure,
so we pretended to make one for my daughter,
who isn’t even in Kindergarten yet.
3 fun first day of school traditions

This cookie recipe is the best one I have!

3 fun first day of school traditions

Mostly because it is really delicious, but also because of the story attached to it. We call them “Creepy roomate cookies” because my husband (boyfriend then) had this roomate who made them almost every day to lure young ladies into his trap!  He wouldn’t let any of the boys have any, but whenever I came over he would force the cookies on me. I shouldn’t really say force. It shames me to admit it, but they were so good that I was nice to my “almost husband’s” strange,  personal space invading, over cologned, creepy  roomate just so I could eat them! So yada, yada, yada… he gave me the recipe as a wedding gift, and I was actually excited! So enough with the hype, here is the recipe to my husband’s

Creepy Roommate cookies

2 sticks butter
¾ cup brown sugar
¾ cup white sugar
Mix, then add-

3 fun first day of school traditions 2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp water
(I don’t know why a tsp of water would make a difference, but creepy roomate did it, so I don’t mess with it!)
Mix, then add-
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 ½ cups flour
2 cups oatmeal
½ bag chocolate chips
(or 3/4 of the bag, or the whole thing. You know you want to!)
-Dough will be very sticky!-
plop onto pizza pan

3 fun first day of school traditions

Spread out evenly onto a round pizza pan

3 fun first day of school traditions

Bake at 350  for ten minutes and check every two to three minutes after, until golden brown.

Trick for writing on the cookie:
put frosting and food coloring in a plastic bag and smoosh til blended, then snip off the corner

3 fun first day of school traditions

and write!
3 fun first day of school traditions
As you can see, she loved it, and when my boys got home they loved it too!3 fun first day of school traditions
What’s that?
Why don’t I just do it every year you ask?
Well, I just might,
but then how will I commemorate the momentous occasion of
full time school?
Regardless of the reasons,
going back to school traditions can be a lot of fun!
Here are two more fun traditions to start with your kids on the first day of school:

#2 bomb the bus

3 fun first day of school traditions

with water balloons!

3 fun first day of school traditions

RUN!3 fun first day of school traditions
You might want to make sure the kids are entirely off the bus to avoid angry bus drivers!!! Hindsight is always 20/20.
3 fun first day of school traditions

#3 measure you’re little one’s growth

3 fun first day of school traditions
Remember Alison’s wooden growth chart?  It works perfectly for this!
Whatever you do, just don’t let it pass you by!
Think of something fun to do and then make it a tradition.
When I was a kid it sure made me feel special!
*My husband just reminded me that Americans don’t say “grade one,”
so please forgive the Canadian words/phrases.”
3 fun first day of school traditions

I have to properly introduce Emily.  You vaguely know her from the rainbow polka dot party and angel wings posts.   She has flown under the radar for long enough, it is time you meet her.

3 fun first day of school traditions

Five Fun Facts:

1. I like to talk, a lot, except when I’m supposed to, then I’m way nervous!

2. I’m a Canadian living in America, and my Mom’s an American living in Canada.

3. I always make the person that I’m talking on the phone to say goodbye first. I don’t really know why, I just refuse to do it.
4. I love to read good books.

5. And now for the most important thing you need to know about me, the older I get, I like peanut butter less, and dark chocolate more!

Super Hero Power wanted:

If I could have any super power I would want the ability to always know the right answer. Then I would never have to second guess myself… and I’d always be right, which really does sound like a LOT OF FUN DOESN’T IT?

Thanks Emily!

You are always answering my HowDoesShe questions and this was no exception.
My kids LOVED their BIG COOKIE!
We are participating in these linky parties…thanks!
Including TCB
    1. August 18th, 2010 at 12:38 pm
      Claudia Bridge says:
      Emily - this a so great!!! What fun to see a daughter carry on a tradition ... and by the way I did not celebrate your leaving I did it because I missed all of you and the day was long with you being gone!!! Maybe I felt differently with child # 9!! Jokes.. The new traditions are exceptional - love all the photos and adore you... love, Mom
      • August 18th, 2010 at 1:22 pm
        Emily says:
        Awww Mom you are so sweet! I really do miss my kids when they're gone at school... some of the time!
    2. August 18th, 2010 at 12:49 pm
      Alison says:
      Em...I did the the cookie idea from you last year, but I made the cookie into the shape of a 3 for 3rd grade. It was burnt one one side and not done on the other side...so I am so glad I can see the big cookie idea. That looks a lot easier and a lot more appetizing!
      • August 18th, 2010 at 1:23 pm
        Emily says:
        Props for making different shaped cookies! Missy and I had a bit of a burning problem too, I filled the pan too full and the overflow caught fire in the bottom of my oven! Oops!
    3. August 18th, 2010 at 1:09 pm
      Julie says:
    4. August 18th, 2010 at 2:32 pm
      Amy says:
      Very fun! And Emily is a great story-teller!
    5. August 18th, 2010 at 2:49 pm
      Staci Starnes says:
      Em...I absoultely LOVE YOU! What a fun idea. I LOVE the pictures of when you are little. We'll give the "creepy roomate cookie " recipe a try when my boys go to school this year. Oh, and you are a great decision maker..you just like weighing your options and thinking things through. That's a GOOD quality! I'm sad I won't see you this weekend. I wish I could be in 2 places at once. Love you much! :)
    6. August 18th, 2010 at 3:05 pm
      Jen says:
      Love your ideas Em! You need to be a regular on here!! I like doing the grade numbers too...then I can do it every year for each kid!
    7. August 18th, 2010 at 3:13 pm
      Mindy says:
      Such a great idea! I love the pic of the two girls peering over the counter in excitement. So cute!
    8. August 18th, 2010 at 3:16 pm
      Jennifer says:
      My oldest son will be starting Grade One in a couple of weeks and I think this will become a new tradition in our house!!
      (BTW - I did a double take when I saw the pic of you on your bike...is that an Alberta licence plate on that Suburban I thought to myself?? Can't be... So I went back and read your bio a little closer to see where you are from lol.) From one Albertan to another, thanks for the great idea!!
    9. August 18th, 2010 at 3:20 pm
      Meagan says:
      Yay! A fellow Canadian (I'm not living in America like you though) :)
      Thanks for the great idea, I'll definitely be doing this when my little one goes to "grade one" ;) (which is coming WAY too soon!)
      .-= Meagan´s last blog ..the BIG LONG post! =-.
    10. August 18th, 2010 at 3:53 pm
      rosie at 3rosebuds says:
      My baby goes to "grade one" this year and I have mixed emotions about it. Maybe the giant cookie is a good idea for both of us :)

      I always take first and last day of school pictures of my kids to see the difference from August-June.
      .-= rosie at 3rosebuds´s last blog ..philadelphia on a budget =-.
    11. August 18th, 2010 at 4:03 pm
      Heather - Chickabug says:
      What a great idea! I love the Creepy Roommate cookie recipe story - LOL!! I have a very similar story in my own experience, except the guy in question used fish to get his dates to come back to his apartment. (As in, "Why go out to dinner? I have a beautiful piece of fish at home!") Worked EVERY time, apparently! : P
      .-= Heather - Chickabug´s last blog ..NEW! Halloween party printables =-.
    12. August 18th, 2010 at 4:16 pm
      Shelley says:
      This post melts my heart a little. I can't wait to do these things for my kiddos when they get a bit older...
    13. August 18th, 2010 at 4:25 pm
      stacy says:
      This is such a darling idea. I am so sad my kids already started school last week and I didn't make them a giant cookie. Maybe I will make it late anyway and start on time next year. I can't wait to try the recipe and see my kids smiles when they come home to their very own giant cookie. Thanks for sharing...I love your ideas!
    14. August 18th, 2010 at 6:24 pm
      Jennifer says:
      I love the name "Creepy Roomate Cookies" :)
    15. August 18th, 2010 at 9:28 pm
      Ashley says:
      That's a yummy idea! Here's another that I'm stealing from a friend who homeschools (this is our first year to HS), but homeschool or not, it's cute. She has her kids fill out an "about me" for her just like teachers do at school. She asks them what their fave stuff is (color, activity, etc) and has them draw a picture of themselves.
      .-= Ashley´s last blog ..Im gonna do whaaaat =-.
    16. August 18th, 2010 at 10:30 pm
      Rochelle says:
      Dumb question but.... I'd like to make the cookie recipe but not as one big cookie...just as normal regular sized cookies. Will the cookies still turn out?
      • August 19th, 2010 at 1:12 am
        Missy says:
        Oh yes. Just scoop normal size drops like you usually do and bake at 350 for 8 to 10 minutes
    17. August 20th, 2010 at 6:06 am
      Amy @ Blowout Party! says:
      We're so going to bomb the school bus with water balloons! HA!
      .-= Amy @ Blowout Party!´s last blog ..Zumba Party! =-.
    18. August 20th, 2010 at 8:23 am
      Amy @ Living Locurto says:
      LOVE that big cookie! How fun is that:-) I just take photos of my kids each year. I'll have to make a cookie now.

      Here is what I do: http://www.livinglocurto.com/2010/08/back-to-school-chalk-board/
      .-= Amy @ Living Locurto´s last blog ..Cruise Shore Excursions =-.
    19. August 20th, 2010 at 9:11 pm
      Jacklyn says:
      Wow I have such a fancy sister, I need to find the picture of me with my grade one cookie. And I agree with keeping it just for the first day of grade one, maybe cause that's how we had it but man I remember awaiting my cookie, it made grade one special. And just a side note, classic Mom to take the picture when the cookie was half gone like "Oh wait I need a picture of that". Love the post Em and maybe now you can get Missy to feature our soap carving or our peach can stilts that we made as kids...they were classic!
      • August 25th, 2010 at 3:23 pm
        Emily says:
        Great ideas! I'll get right on that Jack! I don't think we have any pics of those though.
    20. August 23rd, 2010 at 7:47 am
      The Nifty Nest says:
      I hope you will come participate in my link party today! That cookie sure does look good! Mmmm. :)

      All About The Boy @ The Nifty Nest!

    21. August 25th, 2010 at 10:45 pm
      Polly @ Helping Little Hands says:
      Love the cookie and the measuring stick idea! I think I'll try them.
      .-= Polly @ Helping Little Hands´s last blog ..Were Alive and VERY Well =-.
    22. August 26th, 2010 at 11:32 am
      Jennifer says:
      Love it!!!!
    23. August 27th, 2010 at 5:09 am
      Sarah @Bumblebeeandsophie says:
      I love the idea of making occasions special by little traditions like this! Now that I have a daughter of my own I've been trying to think back to all the creative things my mom and dad did when we were kids. I think those traditions were such an important part of forming our identity as a family and as individuals...probably why my brother and sisters and I all turned out OK:-)
    24. August 28th, 2010 at 2:50 pm
      katherine says:
      LOVE the big cookie! The girls look so excited! Thanks for sharing.
    25. August 28th, 2010 at 4:18 pm
      Maryann @ Domestically-Speaking says:
      LOVE this tradition!!!
      .-= Maryann @ Domestically-Speaking´s last blog ..34th PoPP Spotlight… =-.
    26. September 1st, 2010 at 12:09 pm
      Kathryn says:
      Thanks for the recipe! I made it yesterday for my daughter's first day of kindergarten and she LOVED it!!
      .-= Kathryn´s last blog ..Gussy has a lot to sew =-.
    27. August 9th, 2011 at 8:19 pm
      Heather Odom says:
      My kids would flip for the BIG cookie!! The only tradition we have is my kids (a now 5th and 7th grader...wow) always wear s'thing red the first day of school. There is nothing special about red...it's not our favorite color or anything like that...it just happened to be what my son wore on his first day to kindergarten and first grade and I thought it'd be neat to keep it going. I'm glad I kept it up!! I'm hoping they keep it going with their kids one day too! =)
    28. August 16th, 2011 at 7:26 am
      Kim @ seven thirty three says:
      Such a great tradition! It is one the kids will never forget! I featured it in my 19 Creative Back to School Ideas and Treats round-up today!
    29. August 20th, 2011 at 9:01 am
      Marie says:
      How fun! I love the giant cookie idea and I'm sure the kids will too.
    30. August 16th, 2012 at 10:27 pm
      Nesleirbag says:
      What a great idea! Those two little cuties look so excited peering over the counter - what a fun tradition! Howdoesshe, more wonderful ideas and great job, Emily!
    31. August 23rd, 2012 at 12:40 pm
      Hannah says:
      what size pizza pan did you use? I made the recipe with a 12 inch pizza pan and it was too small. I had overflow and a super thick cookie that took forever to bake.
    32. August 25th, 2012 at 8:53 pm
      Alyssa says:
      I love the Giant Cookie and the Bombing the Bus traditions! I'm featuring them both on my blog today, as part of a Back to School DIY roundup. Come check it out!


    33. August 26th, 2012 at 9:33 pm
      Christi Marcotte says:
      Love the picture of 6-yr-old you! So fun! My guys are starting 3rd and 5th tomorrow and I was looking for a fun tradition to add. Thanks for sharing your tips! I think a great big cookie might be in our future! I mean, who doesn't love a big giant cooke?? :o)
    34. August 13th, 2013 at 3:31 pm
      Monica says:
      When you make this recipe do you use the instant oatmeal or old fashioned?
      • August 14th, 2013 at 4:28 pm
        Missy says:
        We used the old fashioned.
    35. September 3rd, 2014 at 9:53 am
      clarisa says:
      Hi Emily...I'm also stealing your wonderful tradition of the big cookie, I think I'll be making it every year for my son:)
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