Lots of boxes full of my not-so-favorite Christmas treat that turned in to my oh-so-favorite Christmas tradition.
He crafted them so perfectly, with just the right ratio of cookie to icing.
My grandpa was (and is) a craftsman, a maker, that always created the best experiences for his grands. Just as he would make jewelry boxes or rocking horses, he put the same meticulous effort into making these tiny houses.
He “built” the houses from scratch, one for each of us grandchildren, as blank slates. And the number seemed to grow each year. I remember watching him with anticipation and mentally planning out what I would make my house look like. When I was younger, I would sit on my dad’s lap as he helped me decorate mine. But as I got older and more independent, I saw it as my very own house and my very own creation. And also my way of secretly eating a lot of candy!
All of us grandkids would sit around a big long table with any type of candy you could imagine, sprinkles, food coloring, and more in the center. We would each use the same resources, but the final product would always look different and unique. In the end, it would look like a small village and we would line them up all in a row, and make fences out of pretzels and Christmas trees out of upside-down waffle cones caked with icing and green-colored coconut and a touch of mini-M&M’s. It looked like a true Winter Wonderland!
Of all the Christmas traditions, this one has to be my favorite one of all to look back on. Although I liked eating the decorations more than I liked the actual gingerbread cookie, it still creates a sense of nostalgia from my childhood that I love looking back on this time of year!