Gingerbread House : Phase 1


Construction is underway for the gingerbread house!

We finally had our first snowfall and that spurred me into action. My right-hand girl, Miranda, was there to help me and we spent a relaxed afternoon listening to Christmas music and playing with ca
ndy. Snow fell all day long and we were pretty content as we chatted and got in touch with our creative sides.
“I don’t have a creative side” said Miranda, but it was obvious that she does (all Wimbushes do!)
by her expert handiwork. I was happy to have her around to help with all the ‘masonry’.

As we worked and munched, each sugar high was higher and each crash was lower until we finally said “eno
ugh!” and left the rest for another day.
Here are some photos of the process.


Noah checking to make sure the dough is coming together just right. Can you tell this is a pre-haircut shot? 🙂


Cutting out the pieces of gingerbread.


Raising the walls. They are burnt on purpose to dry them out as much as possible so they don’t soften and fold.


And here we have the shell together and it’s going to dry overnight.
In case you can’t tell, it’s going to be a church. Stop by soon to see the finished product!

More Than A Cookie Swap

Antique cookie cutters encircle a delightful assortment of homemade cookies

The doorbell rang cheerily a few times on Saturday and Danny, Noah and I welcomed friends and family in from the cold. Danny was especially welcoming, as each person came bearing big tins of cookies. This was the first time I’ve hosted a cookie swap, and it won’t be the last! Even though we were few, due to a slew of last minute cancellations, a good time was had by all from the oldest to the youngest. The youngest being Noah, who tasted shortbread for the first time and now agrees that this should be an annual or semi-annual tradition. Pots of tea and copious cups of coffee were drunk and a well-laden plate of cookies consumed as we chatted and laughed and watched the kids play together. It was something more than just swapping some baked goods, but a cozy sense of fellowship and friendship: woman to woman, mother to mother.

A big thanks to all the ladies that came and brought their delights!
Terrie came bearing chocolate chip cookies so fresh, they didn’t have time to cool and were still on the baking sheet! Diana’s yummy chocolate mint snaps were a hit and their mysterious crunchy centers a topic of interest. Arlene was inspired by my invitation and baked her first batch of cookies in three years. Tavia’s hand rolled coconut caramel cookies were perfect and her colorful holiday oatmeal raisin cookies the ideal round-out to our table. I contributed my usual spice snaps, some two-bite brownies, and shortbread in various shapes and flavors.

Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Santa Boots
Needless to say, if you decide to drop by for tea in the next few weeks, I could probably rustle up a little crumb of something to serve alongside. That is, if Danny doesn’t find my stash……

Caramel Coconut and Holiday Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Shortbread Candy Canes

And now, here is my most requested cookie recipe!!


Spice Snaps

Preheat oven to 325F

Cream: 3/4 cup butter, room temp
2 cups sugar

Stir in: 2 eggs, room temp
1/2 cup molasses
2 teaspoons white vinegar

Sift and add:
3 and 3/4 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger (or 3 teaspoons ground)
1 teaspoon freshly ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon grated Tonka bean
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves


Mix well and roll into 1 inch balls. Roll balls in white sugar to coat and place two inches apart on baking sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes until tops have cracked and edges start to brown. Cool.

These cookies freeze well. Make 4 dozen