Decorating Gingerbread Houses with Amy Blessing

12/18/2014  

One of my favorite holiday activities with the little ones is decorating gingerbread houses. And we had so much fun doing so last time with the wonderful Amy Blessing, that we had to do it again this season. This year, she provided us with an amazing assortment of natural materials for decorating, which brought a refreshing twist to the traditionally candy-coated houses. 

Instead of making our own gingerbread and icing, we used one of my favorite pre-made kits from Trader Joe’s. With a wonderfully distinct shape, their design was modeled after a hexenhaus – literally, witch's house – whose origins can be tied to the Grimm's tale of Hansel & Gretel. And just as great: no synthetic colors, artificial flavors, or preservatives are used in the gingerbread or décor. 

To decorate, we laid out burlap tablecloths, the houses (which we had assembled ahead of time), and Amy's simple yet inspired assortment of natural decorations, including: clovesallspicecinnamon sticks, greens from the flower mart (cut into tiny pieces), small pineconeslittle jingle bellswhite paper feathers, and tiny wreaths from Moscatels.

And, as a sweet holiday adornment for our little decorators: jingle bell necklaces made using silk yarn and jingle bells. The whole afternoon was such fun, and so cute to see how creative the kids could get with a new set of materials. I look forward to seeing what imaginative options we can come up with for next year. XXJKE