I love this time of year! This past Saturday morning, I hosted the second Willow Creek Page Turners Gingerbread House Decorating Party. It went a lot smoother this year. With a little extra preparation and planning, I found myself enjoying this year even more than last. I love planning the party and making sure my guests have all they need to have fun.
I opened all the pre-made, pre-built gingerbread houses, unwrapped them and placed them back in their cartons. This allowed the women to choose the house they wanted to build and have the carton close by for inspiration.
I sorted all the candies and placed them in bowls so they were easy to get at. I also bought extra candies from a local bulk candy shop. The shop has a variety of old-fashioned candies that are not easy to find.
I had two stand mixers going to prepare the royal icing. I used the mix included in the kits and also made our Royal Icing recipe with Meringue Powder. Since we didn’t have to assemble the houses I made the icing a medium consistency and it worked great for decorating.
I filled disposable decorating bags for each guest and also gave them a dampened cloth napkin to keep the tip from drying out. I covered the mixing bowls with damp cloths to keep the icing workable. When the decorating bags were empty, I’d replace them with another filled disposable bag. Although I love to reuse items, keeping fresh bags ready when needed kept the party moving.
We had a great time. We all commented on how this time together is a great break from our hectic schedules. We all slow down and just have fun adding the candies and we don’t stress about perfection.
My book club friends supplied all the brunch munchies and the conversation around the dining room table was lively. Here’s a shot of our finished results:
Each guest placed their house back in the Gingerbread box; I really appreciated the extra folded brown carton in each box. It has two folded sections so we could place the house on the middle section, crease the sides and they were used to help us carefully put our treasures back in the box and carry them home.
Be sure to browse our Gingerbread House Fun web page for more decorating ideas, techniques and frequently asked questions.
Have a wonderful holiday season. I hope you find time to spend with family and friends and create your own traditions and memories. Happy Decorating!