Tag Archives: gingerbread house
The last couple of years we have started a new Christmas tradition, making a gingerbread house together. Of course, any Christmas tradition for my kids is a new one. We were Jehovah’s Witnesses up until recent years when the Brotherhood left us behind. You probably know already that it is against their religion to celebrate traditional holidays like Christmas. And I bear them no ill will for anything, but their ways are really not my ways anymore. So, since we are having our fourth Christmas mini-tradition, I prepared by finding gingerbread kits on sale at Walmart. I am not Scrooge anymore, but I still need to cut costs for poverty reasons.
I scored this one for only $5 because the Christmas rush is ending and they are trying to sell out the goodies that are growing old on the shelf. My daughter the Princess saw this and immediately declared she was looking forward to biting the head off Charlie Brown.
I responded to her somewhat-unexpectedly hostile comment against a cartoon character I love and identify with by showing her the back of the box.
The Charlie Brown figure will be the cardboard cut-out from the back of the box. The only candy figure is Snoopy. Of course, she then promised to decapitate and then cannibalize Snoopy. The girl ordinarily likes cartoons, so I don’t fully understand the double meaning behind her ravenousness.
As an added challenge to our artistical gustatory creativeness I also scored this gingerbread train, seen here pulling across the tracks at the Toonerville train station. All aboard! That won’t last long if we get it made this year. Of course it will fossilize if we try to save it for next year.
That, then, is the evil plan for Christmas that we are probably not supposed to be celebrating. But we will not roast in Hell for executing this evil plan. Jehovah’s people don’t believe in Hell.
I have been suffering through bad day after bad day recently. I had a fender bender. My favorite football team got plowed into the turf in the playoffs. I have been suffering a great deal from weather-induced arthritis pain, low blood sugar, and viral infections. And I even reached the download limit on my WordPress account, meaning I will have to pay more money to post new pictures.
But this blog is percolating along at 30 views per day or more. I am being read and exposed to the light more than I ever have in my whole writing life. That doesn’t earn me a penny, in fact, it costs me money, but it has to be a very good thing. I deal with pain and hardship through creativity. I create things to make it better.
When I was a kid, there was a little old German lady that lived in our little town. She had a tattoo on her forearm. She had been in a concentration camp in Poland in the 1940’s. But , living as an Iowan, she was the most cheerful and loving old lady I knew. She gave me chocolate bars for holding the door open for her at the Methodist church. She gave homemade cookies to all the kids constantly. She did not have any children of her own for very sad reasons that no one ever talked about. She loved it when children visited her at her little tar-paper-covered house that we nicknamed “the Gingerbread House”. I vividly remember being there one cold winter night after choir practice when she gave us gingerbread cookies and hot chocolate. She told us on that snowy winter evening, “Gingerbread makes everything better.”
I have to believe that philosophy is essentially correct. My stories are like gingerbread. If I cook them just right, they will have that good ginger taste that soothes all hurts and longings. So, I started putting together a story in honor of her. She is already a character in several of my stories. But I needed one where Grandma Gretel was the main character. And it has to be about baking gingerbread and telling stories. In fact, I think I will bake a little magic into it. The gingerbread men she bakes will actually come to life. And I will put together a theme about overcoming the darkness with a smile and wink and a recipe for gingerbread.