A bit Portland in Pasadena

Dec 31, 2014
Usually by this time of the year I’ve made loads of shortbread and a couple of batches of fudge.  Not this year.  Due to unforeseen circumstances the Portlandians arrived two days late, so that threw off the schedule.  I know more time available should have allowed me time to bake, but I found myself painting the fireplace mantle instead.  Led by my Construction Muse, I guess.
Many of the plans we’d made to cover the space of almost a week became compressed into the things we really wanted to do in about four days.  
Two of those mornings I went to breakfast with one of the girls; Lili, the elder, and I ate at Andy’s, Cheli, the younger, and I ate at Fox’s.   We’re on a roll – the girls were the ones who requested the breakfasts.  I think this really is a tradition for them.  Yea.
Another bit of time was spent allowing the Portlandian parents to do last minute shopping while I had a chance to do some Christmas activities with the girls.  The worked on Christmas ornaments that they shared as gifts.  They spent hours doing this and spent a lot of time working on a gingerbread village.  
We did our first gingerbread house when Lili was 2 or 3.  So we’ve been doing this for more Christmases than she can remember.  
I was in charge of the structural icing this time and they did the rest.  

They came up with the idea of walkways to the iced-over pond.  You know the one where the uncooked pasta space people are skating.  To the left rear is a campfire.  Please note the red and orange candies in the circle center.
This year we also had some Ninjabread cookies.  To be honest I used a mix bought at CostPlus, but baking was still involved.  Contrary to popular belief it is possible to mess up a mix.  You see only the well baked Ninjabread.
Of note: I am extremely proud of the girls and their decorating skills.  They both know how to use an icing/piping bag.  They also decided that they wanted to use the package images as a guide more than  as something to try to copy.
The final result of their and my efforts.  It must be noted that they also made a point of having boy and girl Ninjabread.  After all, the elder shared that girls can be Ninjas, too.

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