I've made a few gingerbread houses, but this time I decided to actually go with a theme. I made 4 small houses that represent the 4 places my family has lived. Hong Kong, England, Lake Tahoe (NV) and Florida. The houses are along a path that all lead up to a giant christmas tree! EVERYTHING is 100% edible except for the cardboard/foil the base is sitting on. All of the support inside of things is made from food! There are stories behind all of the little details I threw in, a lot of thought and time went into this. You can read all about it or just check out the pics!
First of all, a video 'tour' of my ginger bread house: http://s169.photobucket.com/albums/u218/leighi123/baby/December%202010/?action=view¤t=MOV05749.mp4
(sorry this is cheesy, its me filming/pointing, my mom taking, and my dad/sister doing a puzzle in the background!) My 3yr old throws in some commentary too.
The first house is Hong Kong
, where I was born and lived for 14+ years.
This is a 2 story house surrounded by lovely cement. We have a tiny strip of yard, a patio with a green plastic dining set and on the roof is our astroturf lawn, play house and slide (all of which my sister and I loved to play on!). In the back is a oval shaped swimming pool with a ring shaped raft. I think we wore swimsuits more often than clothes in Hong Kong. also on this house there is a balcony, a window air conditioner and a tile topped 'cement' wall surrounding it.
The next house is England
, we lived right on the Thames river in Bray/Maidenhead for 2.5yrs.
This house features the black and white low style house with a thatched roof, doorway, and yellowing windows.
There is a cobble stone pathway on one side, and a garden on the other (more about that next).
In the back we have the river Thames. Boathouse
- The real one was hand painted green and yellow by my sister and I and flooded right up to the roof one year. It has a tiny red and white life ring on the sideRiver
- made from poured sugar has a tiny yellow and blue blow up dingy on it, our "boat" which we would paddle up river and then float home. Roses
- detailed rose bushes line the back of the house. St. Florian
- is the St. of water, his picture was on the side of our house (literally), and our house was named after him (in england houses have names, not numbers). He is hand painted food coloring on sugar cookie.
Next is the Garden
The garden is between the England and Florida houses b/c we had/have gardens in both places. It contains a bean pole teepee, tomato bush, pumpkins, cauliflour, eggplant, and carrots. All hand sculpted from modeling chocolate I made and dyed from scratch (my first time working with the stuff)
Next is Lake Tahoe
(the gingerbread house was built inside of the actual Tahoe house!)
The back yard includes a broken fence (because the real fence slats fall out all the time), a bluebird
that used to attack our dog when we lived there, and a giant snowman (just because).
In the front yard is a lot of snow and a tiny tye dye sled just like the one my son got while we were in the middle of making the gingerbread house. real one here: http://i169.photobucket.com/albums/u218/leighi123/baby/December%202010/DSC05623.jpg
We also have the large cross shaped window, this is why we named this house "The Sanctuary"
Snow covered roof with a deck out back, 2 garages, and an entryway.
Levi, age 3 made the wreath on the side of the house in the last pic. The real wreath is a pathetic weird oval shape we hung above our fire place made by my sister after much swearing and sneezing.
Behind the tahoe house is the LAKE
! And mountains.
is poured sugar and includes a little sail boat, hand painted rocks, and a sandy shore. Up in the mountains (ok behind them) is a campground, complete with a tent, campfire and bear paw prints
. A real bear visited us at our campsite this summer on my son's first camping trip (climbed up on the picnic table 3 feet from me before I noticed him!) Made it a real official camp out.
The mountians are where we ski in the winter. Check out the lake view:
The last house is Florida
, where we live now.
"L" shaped sugar pool
in the back has a red painted deck, when they were painting this deck there was a 6 foot snake that matched the color of the paint perfectly, we had to spray it with the hose for an hour before it left.
Also there are some tiny palm bush things made from coconut.
See the real snake/deck here: http://i169.photobucket.com/albums/u218/leighi123/baby/April%202009/DSC01257.jpg
The house itself includes an ugly brown roof, a brown door (our real one freshly redone), and a garage door.
Also in the back of the house is the beach!
. In real life its 2 miles away, but still pretty close.
The beach has a giant palm tree with a kite stuck in it, a sandy brown sugar shore, poured sugar ocean, beach towel, and 2 surf boards (just for my Levi)
Finally we have the tree
Its made from stacked gingerbread, handcut after it was baked and painted green. The ornaments and presents are made from various things, mostly modeling chocolate but some candy too. At the top is a gumdrop star.
This year our real tree was 14 feet:http://i169.photobucket.com/albums/u218/leighi123/baby/December%202010/DSC05620.jpg
But we have had bigger, in fact we have even had one we had to nail to the celing to keep it from falling... the nails are still up there to prove it.
Between the houses is a path that connects them all, because we are still have a fondness for all of the places in the world we have lived.
There are some more pics of the house, and some of my family enjoying our vacation here:http://s169.photobucket.com/albums/u218/leighi123/baby/December%202010/?start=all
This house took a lot of time, effort, contemplating, correcting, child wrangling (Levi is allergic to most of this house!), and a big mess to make. Its a representation of my family's journey and destination of a happy christmas celebration. I would love to win, but even if I don't, I made something that means a lot to us, and it was fun to do! I hope you enjoyed the pics and the story, thanks for looking (and vote for me!!!)