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  • Danielle Grain

Gingerbread Houses and Discovery

"What ideas do you have for the gingerbread house?"

Um, edible.

"I mean specifics."

Yeah, I had none.

Yesterday my husband and I were asked to participate in a gingerbread house activity that was also part contest. The rules were that the home had to look inviting, and must be completely edible- no toothpicks, glue, etc. Not to mention we were a little bit stuck with whatever was available in our kitchen.

I had a somewhat basic idea of the home-ness of this little gingerbread house and as we began my husband said, "let's discover, and let the materials talk to us. The mode of the art knows what it wants to be." Out of context that sounds almost downright mystical but as we worked we found that the pieces liked working in some ways and not in others. It was a lot of trial and error and patience. "Glue" the walls with royal icing and then let them set and completely dry.

After building our little house like this I can definitely see why gingerbread houses I have build in the past failed. I was going way too fast and insisting on decorating with heavy candy on the roof of a house that didn't have strong walls.

However, this little house was sturdy and ended up looking pretty cute!

Progress is often the same way. It would be really nice if we could run through something once, have it stick, look good and then we could just move on. You can certainly make a gingerbread mess that way, but not something strong.

At the end of this cute contest we were ready to toss the little house and made one more discovery- it was even stronger than I had thought. I pushed, pressed, and hit the little gingerbread house but it wasn't until I kind of punched it that it broke. Keep in mind too, we made it out of gram crackers.

Patience, the right "glue" and discovery and we had built something strong.

Whatever we do in life I hope we are patient, thoughtful and willing to discovery. You never know what you might find.

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