Saturday, December 31, 2011

First ever gingerbread house !

I wasn't originally too keen on making a gingerbread house with the girls. There was just so much going on in the house I thought it would be a bit of a disaster - finding a pattern, making the pieces, assembling the house etc. all while caring for sweet baby Emily. Enter the gingerbread kit! My Mom bought us a Wilton gingerbread house kit and nonchalantly gave it to the girls a few weeks before Christmas. That pretty much sealed the deal - we were making a gingerbread house!
I did a few Internet searches and saw some different ideas and a few tips on making gingerbread houses with children.  3 tips stood out: use a kit and save yourself any baking drama plus younger kids enjoy the candy part the most, not the baking and assembly and waiting part, buy candy that is NOT your children's favourites (so they eat less during the process) and put the candy in a muffin tin so it's easy to choose and also keep the work area tidier without a bunch of opened candy bags strewn about. Win, Win, Win. The kit came with some candy but I bought a few extras just in case - I fully expected some to be eaten as we worked and we all did ;)

Here's our candy all set up:
 I made 2 muffin tins to share between the 3 girls, I manned the royal icing bag.
Christmas dots, M&Ms, spearmint trees, traditional hard candy mix, fruit swirls, spice drops all bought by me. The kit included a few gummy trees, a few flat gumdrops, and the little colourful round candies.
I didn't get any action shots. I took a few on my phone which turned out terrible. It really was a pretty busy event and stopping to snap photos was not going to happen. Perhaps next time, now that I have one gingerbread house under my belt!

Here's our finished house:
Rose didn't want to stop decorating once we finished the house and walkway, so we added an entire front yard that she decorated. Can you see the little orange doorknob? Amy's idea - because how does the gingerbread man open the door!?!

The better side!
Rose was very proud of her Christmas Dots pattern on the roof.

The failed attempt at window curtains side - LOL!
There must have been a wicked storm 'cuz those trees are leaning :)

The back spice drop design

All in all I think I thinned the Royal icing too much. I knew that I was planning on doing the assembly one day and the decorating the next so I thought that *slightly* thinner icing would be better as I expected it to stiffen up a bit after being left in the bag overnight. Well it didn't really, so next time I won't do that. It wasn't a major problem I just had to get the kids to hold the items on for a bit before letting go. I think they did a great job overall.

This activity was SO FUN! I feel so silly for being afraid. The girls had a blast and we will make one every year from now on I'm certain. The kit made it really easy too. The pieces were precut, a base was included, all you have to do is add water to the icing mix and put it in the enclosed bag then assemble and decorate. Could. Not. Be. Easier.

Thanks MOM for *encouraging* me into a fun activity!

Ornaments a plenty!

So many cute mini cutters - just had to try them out :) So we have Christmas ornament lunches.

Rose's lunch
cheese and crackers with ornament shaped cheese (only the front one has the food writers), pineapples, ornament shaped watermelons, Christmas tree with mini M&Ms

Amy's Lunch
Christmas bulb clementine, string cheese, pineapples
ornament shaped watermelons, Christmas tree sandwich with mini M&Ms

I KNOW that I saw this clementine bulb somewhere else - it was definitely not my original idea. I will try and find out where I saw it and give credit.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Santa's sleigh

I don't know what happened this morning! I can only assume that we were running late. It looks a little like time was up :)

carrot sticks, half a clementine, pineapple
watermelon reindeer, Santa face and his sleigh.

same as above but including ranch dip (that's how I know it's Rosie's)

Heidi's lunch
clementines, string cheese, watermelon reindeer,
Santa's face and sleigh sandwiches.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Christmas trees - take 2!

These are lunches from the same day as the Sassy box Christmas tree, so yup they are the same design. Rose had really wanted the new blue lunchbox, the other two still wanted their planetboxes.

Strawberries, watermelon, goldfish, pineapple
Christmas tree sandwich with candy dot ornaments.

Same as above except the cheese present instead of goldfish.  Then after I took the photo Amy says - I'm not eating that cheese. So guess what? I took it out and gave it to Rose, her little square went to school empty.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Sassy food container

This is the first time using our new the Sassy baby food container set. I got them locally at People's. They have pink and blue sets. I have 2 pink and 1 blue. I really like it but need a little practice figuring out how to best arrange items. I have been using the planetboxes so much I haven't really had to think about it!

Rose's lunch

Christmas tree sandwich with candy dot ornaments, cheese presents,
the green mini cup is ranch dip, grapes, strawberries, carrot sticks and pineapples.

The food writers have still been getting a workout!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

O Christmas tree!

Wow. It's been a crazy-busy holiday month. So many school activites, holiday events and organising and I hardly posted any of the girls' lunches! I will try and post a new lunch each day from the past few weeks to catch up. School is on holiday and I won't be making any new packed lunches until the new year but I have several to share from the end of school. 

Saw this and decided it was too easy to not copy it!

Heidi's lunch
Cheese sandwich Christmas tree with mini m&m ornaments,
grapes & strawberries

She was out of school a few days before her sisters, so this was an at home lunch only for her :) She ate the fruit first - not even the candies. <3 her.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Snowflake Sammies

This is the first time using my new Snowflake cutter. It was just right for their sandwiches. Identical lunches for Rose & Heidi. Amy is at home sick, and I was feeling unwell  last night too. Thankfully Daddy got everyone ready in the morning and I rolled out of bed at 8 am only having to make the girls' lunch. I can't tell from the photo which lunch was which. The only real difference was that Rose had mustard on her sandwich.

Snowflake number 1
cantaloupe, grapes, goldfish, ham sandwich

Snowflake number 2

I just noticed a slightly poor cutting job with a piece of ham sticking out - oops. I guess no two snowflakes are ever exactly the same ;) The picks are Wilton cupcake picks. I've had them forever.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Some bunny loves you...

A cute bunny lunch for Amy

bunny shaped boiled egg, strawberries, guava, cantaloupe & grapes
nutter butter & mini nilla wafers, ham bunny shaped sandwich.

Apparently I did not glue (with PB) the bunny's eyes down well enough and they fell off and melted!! oops. She ate all the rest of her lunch though. The guava was from my Mother in Law's tree. We only had a few - it was her first time eating them this past week and all the girls LOVED them. I used Food Writers on the boiled egg. It was a little bit tricky as the markers aren't quite fine enough for the little details.

Sharing on:
Bento Lunch