Gingerbread, Part I

I feel like I've spent the last two days in a land of gingerbread. Since Sunday night, I've made two batches of gingerbread, put together a house, cut out cookies and decorated the house and cookies. I actually can't take credit for making the pieces of the house, because I was called in to sub on Monday -- somewhat unexpectedly, but a full year after I thought I would start subbing -- and dad made the sides. He did a very good job.

Honestly, this was my first real gingerbread house. The most dad and I have done before is get the kits that give you the sides, roof and candy and you put it together yourself. The last few years we've actually gotten the ones that are already put together for you. But I think we've seen the light and won't be going back any time soon.

And to be completely honest, it wasn't even really completely a real gingerbread house. It was still a kit. I found it at my favorite farm stand. It was from Dancing Deer Baking Company, a gourmet baking company, and it was cheap for what it made. It even included 2 gingerbread people cookie cutters. It was perfect.

I made the dough the night before I thought we'd have the whole day to cut the pieces and bake them and put them together so it could chill for long enough. That's one of the hardest parts of making gingerbread -- waiting for it to chill. I'm not that patient.
Then dad, being helpful like he is, cut and baked the pieces while I was subbing.
As far as I can tell, it wasn't as hard as we always thought it would be.

He even thought to make people and wreaths to decorate it with!
Then, we put it together so it could dry while we went last minute Christmas shopping.
We had to be inventive to make sure it wasn't going to collapse while we were gone. We did crack the roof though . . . but you can't tell now that it's decorated. Having the box as the support made it SOOO much easier.
Then, it was time to decorate. Over the years, we've found favorite ways to do things, like shredded wheat for the roof and Andes Mints for the doors/windows. But we're always open to something new.
It was fun having a two story gingerbread house for once. That's something you don't get in a pre-made kit.
We even have a gingerbread family in the front yard. Awww.
Then, we called it a day. On to the cookies.


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