Our HFG girls came up with a great plan to decorate gingerbread houses together last year, and it went so well, we decided to to it again. In the past, Grandma has bought us gingerbread houses to decorate, or I've bought greatly discounted haunted houses left over from Halloween. This year because I'm so cheap, I couldn't bring myself to spend $8.99 on each house, so we made them ourselves. Eben and Kivi picked out a pattern from the internet. Eben chose a country store and Kivi wanted a barn. I went with a simple regular house pattern for Jasper and Opal. It ended up being a 3 day process!
Day 1: We made the gingerbread. It had to be refrigerated for hours.
Here's Jasper helping roll out the dough.
Then we cut out our pattern pieces and baked them.
Day 2: We cemented all our buildings together with royal icing. Later I found that just powered sugar and water work just as well.
Day 3: We all went to the Schocks house and decorated our houses with candy!! Opal really loved this. She successfully put 2 candies on her house. With about 30 candies she'd touch it to the house, then stick it in her mouth. So Grace helped her finish hers while she took a sugar nap.
All the big kids of our group (minus Cooper who was picking up his Daddy!) and their houses.
I grew up doing an advent calendar every year of my childhood since I can remember. It was shaped like a big Christmas tree and everyday my sister and I took turns putting on a different ornament. I looked forward to it every year - even through high school! I wanted one for my kids, but I wanted it to be Christ centered. I'd bought 18 foam nativity people, animals and stars for about 99 cents from Goodwill before Eben was born with the intention of turning them into my envisioned fabric nativity advent calendar. I finally got around to making it this December and I love it! I used 2 place-mats as the backgrounds and basically just glued the whole thing. I was going to sew it, but ended up liking the rough cut edge more.
Each day a different kid takes a turn putting a piece on the advent calendar and they love it -which makes me even more excited. They also take turns every day turning on the Christmas tree lights and unwrapping a Christmas book or movie.
On December 24th it will look like this. Hee hee hee!