Lee learned about Gingerbread Men in his preschool on the same week that he read a book here at Grandma's house about a Gingerbread Baby. He rapidly memorized the chant "Run, Run, as fast as you can--you can't catch me, I'm the Gingerbread Man!" So of course, all of this led to one thing...
Making our own, real, honest-to-goodness, from scratch Gingerbread Men!
(yes, there really is a gingerbread man underneath all those M&M's...)
I used this recipe from the Food Network, though I did double the amount of spices in the recipe after tasting the batter. I also kept the dough nearly frozen, as it was really soft and I didn't want to add a lot of extra flour. The cookies came out perfectly! They're just the right softness and spiciness.
Then I made some royal icing, gave each child their own little tiny bag of it, (I don't really have good pastry decorating supplies, so we used zip-lock bags with one little corner cut off) and sprinkles and M&M's. It was a fun activity to get ready for Christmas--one I might have to make a tradition. Lee has now eaten about four and a half cookies and Anna's well into two or three... hard to keep track of how many when each one gets a couple bites out of it before moving on... ;)
But, just how fun! I feel somewhat empowered. I made gingerbread men from scratch. Not many people do these days. If we make gingerbread houses at all, it's out of graham crackers, and I'm not sure I've ever eaten a homemade gingerbread man... so this is a special treat. Thanks to Lee for the idea!