I love to make gingerbread houses and have been doing it for years. I have a vivid memory of the fourth or fifth grade when a classmate's mom brought in two gigantic, immaculately decorated gingerbread houses. I was in childhood heaven. We were allowed to eat them the day before Christmas break, and I can still remember how vivid those gumballs were along the roof line.
School wasn't the only place I remember gingerbread houses. My mom helped us kids make, bake, assemble, and then decorate a house almost every year that I can think of. I can remember one year my older sister made one by herself and it looked just like Snoopy's dog house at Christmas time. Adorable! Making gingerbread houses has been a strong Christmas tradition my whole life.
I don't have pictures of all of the gingerbread houses I've made, but I do have some from the past few years. I love to see what other people make and I assume you all are a bit like me. Enjoy!
2006: At home in Indiana for Christmas break and I built a house with some of my siblings; just like the good old days.
2008: This was the first time building more of a structured house instead of just a square. Cute, huh?
2010: This house was giant and heavy! It's a church. I experimented a lot on this one with making stained glass windows from crushed hard candies. I wish the picture was better because the windows turned out really pretty.
2011: I made this as a centerpiece for a Christmas dinner at church. It was beautiful on the table. When I brought it home, the kids accidentally knocked it over. The house shattered but luckily my cherished cake stand did not!
Confession: I don't really want help decorating my houses. I normally make a smaller house for my kids to decorate so that I can do mine myself. I assume this will change as they get bigger, but for now, it's a "me project" and I love it that way...
Did you catch the pun in the title? The post of gingerbread past... (The ghost of Christmas past...). I'm a dork, I know.
And, are you inspired to start this super fun family tradition? Did you make houses growing up? Do you make them now with your family?
If you are planning on making one this year, here are some tips on making 3-D gingerbread pieces. And if you don't want to make a house, but love to eat gingerbread: my all time favorite gingery recipe: White Chocolate Gingerbread Blondies. These are amazing and I make them every year.
Keep Calm and Gingerbread On,