Swedish Themed Gingerbread Party Part 2: the Sweet Stuff

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At any gingerbread party, of course, the most important things are the gingerbread houses and the candies to go on them!



I had 29 kinds of candy available for people to use while decorating their houses this year. I'm all about a good selection and variety, and start buying the candy slowly, a bag or two at a time, as soon as the Christmas candy hits the stores.



I particularly loved the apothecary jars I found for the table for several reasons. First, the price. Only $10 for a set of TWO, and they came filled with the silver truffles you see in the forefront of the image above. Second, I loved that they weren't huge. I adore the look of big apothecary jars, but most of the ones I've seen for sale are massive! It would cost so much money to buy enough candy to fill just one of those, far more than I'd need for a gingerbread party! Third, they're plastic. Sure, I love nice glass objects. But it felt good, with all those kids tearing around in a candy-induced-frenzy, to know that I didn't have anything particularly fragile or valuable on the table.
Candy canes are a must for a gingerbread house decorating party!

It's good to have a lot of small candies for gingerbread house decorating. Some larger items are nice, but it's the smaller candies that end up being more useful and interesting.





And I even carved and painted the giant dala horse that decorated the candy table. Really. See, here I am, trying my hand at carving for the first time:




Now, I have to admit that I didn't make it just for the party. No no no no. My husband had wanted a large scale dala horse for years. Usually they're about five inches tall. He thought the large ones were amusing in their unusual scale. But they cost $800 or more, and I didn't have that in my gift-giving budget. So with my father's help and use of his woodworking workshop, I decided to make one myself! It was an adventure, it was fun, I'm exceptionally proud of what I did, and I'll never do it again. I now understand exactly why they cost nearly a thousand dollars. ;-) That sucker took me weeks of work.

The kids needed a way to ferry the candies from the sweets table over to their decorating stations. I knew when I saw these sweet buckets at Michael's for $1 each that I had the perfect solution:



And finally, the kids (and parents) enjoying it all! This is the fourth year for a lot of these kids at the party, and they're getting really good! I love seeing them progress over the years.







Enjoying a popcorn break after squirting icing directly into her mouth for a while:











Thank you, dear friends, for sharing our gingerbread tradition and annual celebration.

Thinking about making a real gingerbread house this year?  Check out my new e-book with all of the recipes, tips, techniques you'll need, and five different gingerbread house templates:

Nicole Wills, creator of Tikkido