making fake gingerbread houses

My monthly post over on Design*Sponge us up today. Here is a peek:

This is the story of making “gingerbread”, aka: hot glued graham cracker, houses with my little ones.

Really though, it is the story of a little girl thinking the project was her personal smorgasbord of what she usually can’t eat…

And it is the story of a protective big brother deciding she’d had too much.

Oh sister, just wait until you start dating and he doesn’t like the boy picking you up….

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  • Andy - i love how he has his finger up telling her and how she is looking at him like, “what? are you talking to me?”
    very nice.

  • Angie - Oh my goodness! Diy you ever capture a moment there!

  • Miriam/The Winter Guest - I really can’t express how much I like your new banner, it’s gorgeous!

  • Pamelotta - I can’t believe you were able to capture that moment when a kids eyes are filled with tears but they haven’t spilled over yet. Oh, that kills me. I probably would’ve handed her the bag and let her finish them off after that!

  • Jackie - If you have the crackers that are square (without the perforation for breaking them into rectangles) you can use a serrated knife to cut them into triangles to cover the upper gable portion. Have done this project in bulk for several different grades, and have developed a certain amount of expertise!

  • ranee - looove it!

  • katelyn garlow - hahaha that last sentence is cracking me up! I have three brothers (1 older/2younger) but they are all taller and bigger than me now that we are grown. One day in high school I was going on a date and they did not like the boy picking me up. So one brother held me in my room while the other two sat my date down on the couch and gave him a not so subtle talking to. It wasn’t only my brothers though… my dad,all my brothers friends that were like my adopted brothers… let’s just say we didn’t go on that date, and I never spoke to that boy again. We laugh about it now… but I was not a happy sister back in the day. The joys of having brothers πŸ˜‰

  • Abigail - “Oh sister, just wait until you start dating and he doesn’t like the boy picking you up….”
    LOL! Such a face! I had big brothers, I’m _so_ glad I they liked the boy I brought home (and married)!

  • Katie - That’s too funny. Oh the woes of having all brothers, eh? I’m the oldest and we still have similar situations!

  • Sarah Pratt - Thank heavens for older brothers who care! Sweet post!

  • Martha - Love the picture of little miss holding the house and attempting to take a bite:):):) So funny!

  • Alice H - Poor Firecracker! I am going to need to make some houses with my kids soon!

  • amber - Awesome. Gotta love big brothers. They all looked like they were working so hard. So cute. On another note, thanks for reminding us about graham cracker houses;). I hot glued a store bought one last year, but then read your post about using graham crackers. Smart, smart, smart. Especially since one store bought one costs more than your 4 graham cracker houses…nice.

  • Monica - So funny. I love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • mandi@herbanhomestead - Oh Ashley! That picture! What a precious little moment to capture. Love it!

  • Ashley E - Glad to see my 2 year old isn’t the only one who would rather eat the candy than decorate. πŸ˜‰

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  • emmybrown - Precious, as always!!! πŸ™‚ I LOVE the idea of using a hot glue gun with graham crackers…hadn’t thought of that one myself! πŸ˜›

  • tara pollard pakosta - how funny!!!!!
    I have 5 big brothers so I KNOW what she’s going through!
    teasing one minute, protecting the next.
    enjoy it little sister!!!

  • amanda torres - I find his ‘mom’ finger so hilarious! We always joke with Addie that she never has to worry about a prom date. She has her Lincoln. Not to mention her two brothers and two boy cousins (which are pretty much additional brothers) will keep those boys away from her. God is good!

  • cailan - So stinkin cute. And thank you for this idea – I’ve wanted to do gingerbread houses with my kiddos…graham crackers will make it possible. πŸ™‚

  • Amy - Oh my word!! The finger pointed and everything. Thanks for the early morning chuckle – HAHA!

  • Emily - You always make the most daunting tasks managable. I so wanted to do gingerbread houses but it was just too much. What a great idea for cheater houses. I love it!!!!

  • MG Atwood - Such great story telling photos. Too cute.

  • MG Atwood - Such great story telling photos. Too cute!

  • Jess - I am a HUGE fan of your blog. My daughter is exactly the same age as Firecracker and my son is 6. There are so many similarities it is crazy. We are attempting gingerbread houses this weekend, it is good to know what is coming my way.
    Happy Holidays!!

  • Natalie Anthony - Does she listen to him? Do you let him ‘help’ her make good decisions? My 3 year old keeps making my 2 year old sit in time out…it was getting out of hand and I nixed her parenting rights..I’m just curious because, for me, this is new territory.

  • Debbie C - This is so sweet (no pun intended)! Firecracker is blessed to have big brother watching out for her good. Love it.

  • Jessica P - Precious. I love that big brother is looking out for her…even if it ends in tears. They are adorable.

  • Emmy A - I’m preggo with my second and I hope big brother is just as protective! I love this! Isn’t it nice that YOU don’t have to be the one telling her she had too much. You just get to swoop in and wipe tears and give her some water to neutralize the sugar. HA HA!

  • Leslie - Oh this is so sweet. LOVE it!

  • mixedmolly - A friend and I made these last year with our kids and they were a big hit (with the kids and us)!

  • Christina - So funny! The picture of sister at the bottom crying and the first picture on the post below of littlest brother crying on santas lap shows how similar they look! Its the same face!! Cute πŸ™‚

  • nicci - love this! your daughter…I wonder if her name is Emily? My little sister is an Emily, and she was just like this! Every Emily I have met since, has the same flamboyant, particular and hysterical personality as your Firecracker and my sis Emily! Since having my sister, my parents tell younger parents, don’t name your daughter Emily unless you want a handful of a daughter!

  • Julie - You and this idea are awesome – I’m so sad I bought a kit at Target… never again!

  • Missy - Oh, this is so sweet. How precious!

  • Michelle - Just love your idea of using hot glue to hold the little houses together. I believe I’ll give that a go when we make our gingerbread house. The worst part is always trying to keep the thing together, and since we don’t eat it anyway, I’m following your lead. Great idea!

  • sarah - Love it!!!!!

  • courtney - love love love the one you have!

  • mosey - Oh my kids think I’ve lost it, I burst out laughing at those last two pictures… Looks like MY house! hehehe

  • Lissa - Funny how if these were my two boys, I’d probably freak out when the little starts eating the house and then the parenting by the older one (yep he’s “a daddy” at the age of 4) and the crying would send me over the edge, BUT your pictures makes me want to have another baby now!?

  • emily anderson - our gingerbread making extravaganza is coming up. i used your idea last year of hot glueing—best.idea.ever.

  • Renata - Rad. Really.

  • Darcie - We did the exactly the same thing… “Here’s the bowl you can eat, the rest is for decorating.” That didn’t work. She ate and licked and ate, and… eventually I said that’s enough. About 10 times. We got the same reaction at the end when I told her, “No you can’t eat the house right now, you’ve had enough.” You’re nicer though, you let FireCracker pick up her whole house and lick it. I couldn’t go that far. πŸ™‚

  • Andrea - I’ve been following your blog for quite some time, but never commented. I have a daughter that is firecracker’s age, and I have to tell you, they seem simular in every way. Their build, their personality, it’s like looking at pictures of my own daughter.
    I love these pictures, especially that in every frame she is stuffing her face. Adorable!

  • Melissa - Awww!! great project for the kids…poor little one πŸ™ …you said it right: “Oh sister, just wait until you start dating and he doesn’t like the boy picking you up…” SO true!

  • Melissa B. - I love the Stella bag! in gray. πŸ™‚

  • Lemonade Makin Mama - I’m pretty sure I’ve lived that very day, many times!!! LOL So darling though and brilliant idea to use hot glue for those houses. (So glad I found you yesterday!!)


  • Kassie - Your kids are super cute and super funny. I always giggle when I look at their pictures!

  • Lyn - Love it! Now we will be doing gingerbread house this year thanks for the idea. Stealing this. Hope thats ok::)

  • maria - adorable photos! lovely!

  • Joan - Oh, oh. But really, how sweet and caring.

  • giozi - He he he
    They are adorables, sorry but I laughed with the 2 last pictures πŸ˜€

  • twirling betty - I wish we had Graham Crackers easily available here. I’m sure there is some alternative but…I want Graham crackers! I am really struggling with my Gingerbread house-making this year in the sense that I just simply don’t seem to be able find the time to mix-up, bake and construct it, let alone decorate it in a way that satisfies my need for order but also allows small daughters to feel they have been allowed to create freely. Ahhhhhh, first world problems! Just typing this comment has put the whole thing back into perspective for me. As your posts so often do.

  • Elizabeth holder - Love your captures of everyday life! Perfect! Have a wonderful holiday and thanks for all the inspiration this year

  • ramya - Adorable kids ….the last picture is super cute….kids are joy πŸ™‚

  • Kara - Priceless. I love it.

  • Shannon (8foot6) - My son just made these today at preschool! I wonder if his teacher reads your blog!

  • Kelly J. R. - The finger shaking photo is so great. What a moment!

  • Megan C. - Oh my! Too cute! What a good big brother to watch out for his little sister! One day I’m sure she will appreciate this, but for now it makes great pictures! πŸ™‚

  • Naomi - Too cute. So sweet and adorable!

  • Krishann - This was so precious!!! The houses are adorable and your commentary on that last photo and your little’s expression is priceless.

  • Rachel - A giant thank you for posting this….I usually dread gingerbread house making with my boys because they fall apart and get crazy messy. We did this yesterday and PERFECT. They turned out super cute and they had fun doing their OWN house and I was able to remain nice and calm about it. πŸ™‚

  • Elizabeth - i *LOVE* these!
    i’ve mentioned before, but we had five boys, then a girl…
    {ages 11 & under}
    SWEET PEA is 10 mnths & i *absolutely* cannot wait to see how her big brothers interact w/ her! LOVE IT!