Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Gingerbread House flashback

I did a very brief post on this Gingerbread House a friend (Kelly S.) and I built two years ago. I loved it so much and what we built it for was even better. Here's another look and more pictures.
To beginning our gingerbread house, we took to paper and worked out the dimensions and details. Thanks to John for his math minded help, without him our windows might have been out of sorts. Truly, thank you John. Once we had our details down we were off to collect our goodies: mints, gum,powdered sugar (lots and lots of powered sugar), eggs, food coloring, tic tacs, peppermints,fondant, sprinkles (we sorted out alot of sprinkles, we only needed the green ones and a few red), graham cracker crumbs (makes a great road) and on and on.  Once we started working we had candy EVERYWHERE! Now, the inspiration for our home, can you guess?
By the end of this blog you'll have an answer. It's historic.
Our blueprints...we meant business!

I had never used fondant before in my life, and we covered every inch in fondant before assembling the house (the historic home we were modeling is white, so brown gingerbread showing wasn't going to work). Fondant requires something I lack...patience! Once we finished that house I could explain fondant to the Cake Boss if needed. I piped all the windows, the window panes, the shutters and made each wreath and garland. 
 Kelly is super patient and I applaud her for that, she re-worked the roof twice trying out different looks and placement of the gum. That was a ton of gum wrappers! She also had much better luck (skill) at cutting those giant peppermint sticks, and she was great at mixing colors for the icing. We worked very well together and each had our strong points and interest. I would have not enjoyed doing the roof and Kelly seemed to really get into it, and I think she would say the tables were turned when it came to windows and wreaths. I liked that.


The back of the Gingerbread House (still under construction in both pictures). We tried to pay close attention to details and matching them with the real home. Now don't forget it IS gingerbread, fondant, icing, candy, and more candy...I would say we were close to the original home considering...we were using food. I should have taken measurements to give you a better idea of scale. I know it was over 24 inches tall and 30 inches wide with a depth of around 10 to 12 inches. It took both Kelly and I to carry it.
Notice the back porch has seven columns made out of the giant candy cane/peppermint sticks...for the record I think we ended up buying twelve or more! We had to use a SAW and cut them to make them fit under the roof, have you ever tried to saw a giant peppermint stick down to the size you need?  Five of the peppermint sticks didn't make it. Kelly kept at it and eventually ended up the seven we needed  and at the size we needed. The historic home our gingerbread house is modeled after has eight columns. We are not professionals, this was our first attempt at something this detailed and large and one column didn't make the cut in our design. 
Everyday for almost two weeks Kelly  S. and I worked on this gingerbread house, hours and hours, juggling five children between us and activities. The experience was a BLAST! We had several re-do's and may have started over a time or two, but we stayed with it and the end result was a huge success for Habitat for Humanity.  Our gingerbread home ( as well as about 8 others) were auctioned off to help raise money for Habitat for Humanity in our county, to my surprise our gingerbread house sold for $3,500.
When we started out, we knew we wanted to build a big, detailed and historic home, well...What do you think?

 We couldn't be happier with the way it all has turned out. Who would ever believe this was the FIRST time we had ever built a gingerbread house this size or detailed before.
Completed view of the FRONT.
 
Finished view of the back minus the yard (green sugar sprinkles). I am a firm believer if you are going to make a gingerbread house this large...do it with a friend! It's fun, motivating, time flies and the end result is great.
 
 
Have you guessed the historic home yet???
Front View
Back View
 
Our sugary sweet gingerbread house is Mount Vernon, the home of our first President George Washington.
 
Here is a pic from last years gingerbread making soiree. We are going to hit the icing and gumdrops this week...I'll post pics of the finished homes later.
I've always decorated a traditional gingerbread house with my children. I have made one for each of the children in my son and daughters class to decorate. I love it. It's whimsical, the children love it, your being creative all while enjoying the holiday. We make them every year and usually more than one. Last year I couldn't find my daughters gingerbread house after returning home and later The Judge told me that Harriet (our Airedale) ATE IT! High five to The Judge he cleaned the mess up and didn't leave a single crumb, I would have never known.
 
What ya think?? Any tips on types on food or candy to use on our gingerbread houses?  Have you made one before?
leave a comment, you never know there could be a giveaway.
 

14 comments:

  1. Impressive!
    Mrs. S

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  2. Where do I start? I may never post a pic of a gingerbread house I attmept to built, yours is incredible. I bet making it was fun but I don't think I have the skill or know how. Gold stars all around you girls hit it out of the park ($3,500 thats amazing).
    Candy I have used before with my children: pretzels, skittles, and fruit loops (we love the colors).

    I never know what to expect when I come to read your blog and I love that. The unpredictable but incredible.

    Gumdrop wishes,
    Missy

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  3. I remember this! Thanks for the repost Tikaa. It is beautiful... I have never made a gingerbread house! though I have always wanted too... And if I ever do find the time, I dont think I would post a pic of it!ha
    ha ha..

    Cheers,(2 shots of Patron)Of course!

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  4. You are something else Tikaa, wowee! My daughter would be so excited to make something like this, that is if I could keep her from eating all of the fondant in the process.
    Bravo!!
    xoxo~
    T

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  5. You and K. are awesome! When P was in kindergarten, I assisted Leslie with a gingerbread farmhouse. We made sheep out of white ghost Peeps stuck together with icing. I think she used Rice Krispie treats for the stone wall. It's fun to see how creative people make use of different candy and sweets!

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  6. Just beautiful Tikaa! Loved seeing the pictures again-just as breathtaking as the first time. Thank you for introducing our family to this tradition of decorating gingerbread houses! We like to use red licorice, gumdrops and peppermint rounds.
    Merry Christmas!

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  7. Just beautiful Tikaa! Loved seeing the pictures again-just as breathtaking as the first time. Thank you for introducing our family to this tradition of decorating gingerbread houses! We like to use red licorice, gumdrops and peppermint rounds.
    Merry Christmas!

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  8. what a delight, i love seeing all your holiday decorations and ideas. what a gingerbread house, and such a great cause. We love using pretzels too and peppermint sticks.

    Merry Christmas,
    Pam K.

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  9. Umm Tikaa, has anyone ever told you that you're amazing?!
    The detail in that is incredible!

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  10. Beautiful job, Tikaa. I don't think I have your patience for something of that magnitude, but I do have plans to make a few tall cone trees in icing and candy for a cute centerpiece. I'm hitting up the Dollar Tree first thing tomorrow for all the colorful candies I can buy.

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  11. Beautiful job, Tikaa. I don't think I have your patience for something of that magnitude, but I do have plans to make a few tall cone trees in icing and candy for a cute centerpiece. I'm hitting up the Dollar Tree first thing tomorrow for all the colorful candies I can buy.

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  12. OMG, that is awesome! I recognized it immediately (huge GW fan), you did a terrific job.

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  13. I'm having so much fun stalking your Christmas posts. How sad I can't wait for Christmas and Thanksgiving this year. Poor Halloween. xoxo, Nelle

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