Family / Food

How to Torment Your Children Tip #46: Gingerbread House

It’s brilliant, really. You set a bunch of candy, frosting, and a house-shaped cookie in front of your kids. And get them all excited about a project involving sugar.

It's like a buffet. That you can only look at. Fun, right?

And then you let them decorate the house. Which at this age means wherever they feel like sticking the candy, there it is. Because if you can get an almost-four-year-old and two almost-two-year-olds to put the candy on the house and not in their mouths, you deserve a Nobel Prize. Or whatever prize they give to people who do fantastic feats, if it’s not that one. Nobel is the only one I know.

"What? I'm not eating this. No. Not at all. Licking it first helps it stick better. My spit is like glue. That's it. Yeah."

Since it’s fun for mommies to participate, you could create your own little gingerbread boy to put on the front of the house. If you use the little hard candy ball things (that are basically mini jaw breakers and are awesome for little kids to eat…), he kind of looks bedazzled and you can name him Richard Simmons.

Run, run, run. As fast as you can. You can't catch me. I'm the bedazzled gingerbread man.

If the eyeballs fall off the gingerbread boy once he's dry, don't worry. It's only a little bit creepy. Not a lot creepy.

Now comes the best part. You set the lovely finished project up on your mantel. Or some other highly visible place of honor in your house. And you say, “No kids. You can’t eat it. It’s for decoration.”

Then wait for the fun to begin.

"I don't care if you gave me a chocolate kiss cookie to appease my screams. I WANT THE GINGERBREAD HOUSE!"

P.S. All good mothers take pictures of their children’s temper tantrums. It’s the coolest.

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22 thoughts on “How to Torment Your Children Tip #46: Gingerbread House

  1. You evil genius, LOL.

    Not a gingerbread house person. I never saw the point of decorating food and not being able to eat it afterwards…I sympathize with your kids πŸ˜€

    Littlest beastie and I just baked a batch of brownies…almost instant gratification!

    • I had never really done one before, but my son saw the kit for sale at Costco. So we tried it. I don’t know if we’ll be repeating the craft next year, LOL!

      Brownies! That’s a brilliant idea.

  2. If we don’t take pics during our kids’ temper tantrums, how will we ever remember what terrible parents we were to cause such misery in their lives? They’ll thank us later. I am sure of it!

  3. My 1st and 2nd children have birthdays the first week of january and I was considering purchasing a bunch of gingerbread house kits on clearance after Christmas, thinking it would be a fun activity for all of the party attendants. I’m thinking not so much now. However, my daughter requested that her cake look like a gingerbread house but not actually be gingerbread and I am following through with that (despite knowing this design is simply her evil scheme to make sure she can cram as much sugar on to one birthday cake as possible. She’s pretty much a genius).

    • She IS a genius!

      How old are the kids? My 4-year-old was much better with accepting the idea of not eating it (and I explained it beforehand). My 2-year-olds were not so understanding :).

      Oh, and my twins’ birthday (or birthdays? Hmm…where do I put the plural? It’s one birthday for two children) is the first week of Jan. too. And my oldest’s is on Christmas Eve. It’s a busy 2 weeks in this house, LOL!

      Good luck with the birthday party!

  4. Love it. Love being kept informed of what the grandkids are doing. Funny thing – Emily is just as cute during a tantrum as she is when she is all smiles. Of course, that’s Grandma talking. I’m sure her mother isn’t quite as accepting:)

    • I think she’s just as cute in the pictures. Mid-tantrum I might not thinks so :). Sometimes the pics of them crying are the funniest. I don’t know why. I must have a weird sense of humor. LOL.

  5. My son loves your mommy posts, Erin! He reads over my shoulder and cracks up. I think he’s got the kid point of view, though. He’d likely coach your kids to wait until you leave the room, stack the couch cushions, climb up and grab a bite. πŸ™‚

  6. Never had a ginger bread house when I was a kid. Fells like I’ve missed something…
    And I don;t think Richard Simmons need to lose his eyes to be acheive creepiness…

    • Nah! Have you frosted sugar cookies? Similar experience, but you can actually eat those :). And if not, you could do it now! It’s never too late. And you’re right. Gingerbread Richard Simmons was creepy even with eyeballs.

  7. Haha, we did the same thing on Thursday, only my kids won and our house is half-eaten. I also turned around for a second and Eric dumped the entire bowl of Spree-like candy into his 19 mo old mouth…way to go choking hazard. We had the little jawbreakers too, which I’m finding all over the place. Definitely a stressful undertaking for OCD Momma to let the house look not quite like a house πŸ™‚

    • LOL. I did let them try to eat some of the little gingerbread men–there were 4 in the package. But those things were rock hard. And it is very hard to not want to take over and make the house perfect. We both deserve a glass of wine, I think :).

  8. LOL. We love decorating gingerbread houses. It can be tough making the kidlets wait for the eating of it though. They get to munch it on Christmas Eve. They don’t even care that it’s stale. LOL

  9. I love it! I remember being subjected to similar forms of torture by my own mother when I was a kid πŸ˜€ I think it would be appropriate to call this post “deliciously evil” πŸ˜‰ Though I do hope that you let the poor kids eat it eventually πŸ˜›

  10. This is what happens when you get so backlogged reading posts…a month later and here I be.
    Just wanted to say this was fun to read and your last piece of advice is the coolest!

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