my first gingerbread house

I'm finally done with the "Christmas project" I mentioned a few posts ago. I'm so excited to show you what I've been working on!!

My mom and my aunt have been making these AMAZING gingerbread houses for a few years now, and last year I decided that I wanted to make one too! Only I wanted mine to be ALL PINK (this was long before I was pregnant, and obviously long before we knew we were having a girl)!

So all year long I watched for pink candies. At Valentine's Day, Easter, etc, I just collected and collected all year long.

We make these houses from scratch using a pattern & recipe given to us by my Aunt's friend. (Sorry I can't share the pattern, she owns the copyright). We bake the gingerbread and cut the pieces out on the first night. We also bake all the windows and the pond (crushed up/melted life savers & jolly ranchers) into the gingerbread. From making the dough, to finishing the windows, this part took about 4 hours.

Then the next night we bring all our pieces and we build and decorate the houses together. Since it was my first time, I was much, much slower than my mom and Aunt. They are pros! So, they finished way before me. Even so, we got together at 6:00pm, and finally left my Aunt's house at 3 in the morning!!!!! 9 hours!

While my mom and aunt left that night with finished houses, I still had my entire "yard" to create. This took me another 4 hour session last night.

It's an insane project. For CRAZY people! But the end result is totally gratifying.

To Re-Cap:
Making dough, baking, windows: 4 hours
Decorating Night 1: 9 hours
Decorating Night 2: 4 hours
TOTAL: 17 HOURS!!!!!

Yes, I've lost my mind. I spent 17 hours on something that I can't even keep forever. After the holidays I'll have to get rid of it!

I wish I had a cuter spot to take my photos and display this beauty, but with our remodeling going on there's nowhere else to put it.

BUT it makes my kitchen smell YUMMY! I'm sure that delicious gingerbread smell will wear off in the coming weeks, but right now its quite nice!

Let me show you some pics of my mom & aunt's amazing creations as well!!

My mom's house:

My aunt Karen's house:

And here they are together after completing theirs (way ahead of me). Don't they look cute!? You can't even tell its about 3 am.

So all in all, its a VERY fun project. So fun to do together. Even though it takes forever, we passed the time very quickly listening to Christmas music and chatting all night long. Plus, when I do these kinds of crafty projects, my creative, artistic side is in full force & loving it. However, when you get to about 2 am, you start to think, I'm SO NOT doing this again next year. But then you wake up the next morning and see your beautiful finished house all aglow, and you think . . . well, maybe!

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