Encouraging Creativity!

We make “gingerbread houses” every year during the holiday season. When the kids were younger I bought several different kinds of gingerbread house kits. I even made a fool proof recipe once or twice. The problem was that the kids started trying to build their perfect little house and they just ended up frustrated. The kits would break and become impossible to build. The houses would not turn out “how they were supposed to”, or I would end up doing everything and maybe they were more “beautiful”, but the kids did not have very much fun.

In fact this year, since the kids were a little older, I thought we could give it a try again, and build a more “official” gingerbread house. The kids started out helping me build the larger gingerbread house in the photo above. They were enthusiastic at first, but quickly got frustrated and did not really enjoy themselves. In fact, after a short time they gave up and we decided to go back to our tradition of making cookie houses instead! Now, don’t get me wrong I am all about teaching perseverance, and learning to work through your frustrations, but I think when it comes to gingerbread houses, it should just be about having fun! After all they have homework every day to teach them perseverance!

So we threw a little party with our cuginetti and built silly, lopsided, candy-heavy houses. We laughed a ton, and helped each other and in the end loved our crazy creations and the time we spent together.

I think they turned out pretty great! And we had fun too, which was the most important part! To make your own crazy cookie house all you will need is: Royal Icing, Graham crackers (or similarly square shaped cookies), and lots of sprinkles, candies, food gel pens, marshmallows, pretzel sticks, and frosting. Use the royal icing to attach your cookies in whatever shape you desire, hold for a few seconds until it dries and then continue to add layers, sides and shapes to your creation. And remember- Perfection is not the objective! Just have fun!!!

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