Gingerbread

Frequent visitors to this blog may remember last year’s exciting adventure when the Gilberts actually attempted to make cookies for Christmas.

Apparently this experience was not sufficiently scarring too bad because shortly after this Thanksgiving, Mark off-handedly suggested that “Maybe this year we should try making a gingerbread house…”

You probably know the saying, “be careful what you wish for…”?

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Well, I heard this and thought: Hey, instead of one gingerbread house, why not a WHOLE VILLAGE? Great idea, right? Each kid can do their own house! Even mom and dad can join in the fun! So what if we’ve never done this before? WHAT COULD GO WRONG?

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And so, on Sunday afternoon, we laid out all the tools for our experiment supplies for this year’s adventure.

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Luckily, we had a guest with us – Katherine’s friend Amanda — who had actually had some recent experience with gingerbread men. The girls were very eager to start wielding their spatulas!

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The first step, to cut out the sides of gingerbread house, seemed to go smoothly (and the Eagle Scout in the house took that literally by scraping the edges smooth!)

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Then came ‘gluing’ the pieces together with frosting. This is trickier than it sounds… Poor Amanda’s house went first and suffered through multiple interventions as we tried to correct slanted walls and crumbled corners. (No photos of this – all hands were involved in trying to save her house!)

We learned from that first house, though, and the subsequent houses went together much more quickly.

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Katie wanted to know if we could eat them now.

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“Nope… the instructions say we have to leave them sit for an hour now…”

WHAT?!?! WE HAVE TO WAIT AN HOUR?!?!?!

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At this point, all the girls were bouncing off the walls (of the big house… not the gingerbread houses…). And they hadn’t even ingested any sugar yet! So I took them to the playground to run off some of that energy. When they returned, the two older girls enjoyed some hot chocolate while Lucy got started on decorating her house (with some help from me).

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When Lucy’s house was finished, the baton (er, frosting tube) was passed to Amanda who attacked her house with intense concentration…

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And turned it into a lovely chalet with Christmas lights across the roof.

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At this point, Lucy wanted to know if it was time to eat her house and was very disappointed when I said she had to wait until the other houses were done being decorated.

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Meanwhile, Katherine began decorating her little cottage…

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Before she could quite finish, it was time for Amanda to go, and so we gathered for a quick ‘village’ photo:

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After Amanda left, Katie continued to meticulously place sprinkles and gumdrops on her house. Meanwhile, Lucy could wait no longer and began to snitch sprinkles and icing-icicles from her house.

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Finally, though, Katherine’s masterpiece was done!

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What’s that you ask? What happened to Mark’s house? Well… er… Mark didn’t feel up to decorating his house… And there was a lot of frosting left over… And I wondered what a gingerbread house would look like in a Michigan blizzard…

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Question answered!

And what did Mark think of the blizzard hitting his neatly-constructed house?

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Uh, no comment.

All in all, we mostly had fun and the girls definitely enjoyed eating some of the icing from the houses.

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But maybe next year we’ll take the easier route to getting a frosting fix…

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Merry Christmas to you all!

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