Gingerbread Cabin Cookies

Making Christmas cookies is a family tradition, but this was my first year attempting gingerbread and I think our little gingerbread cabins turned out great! Okay my cookie decorating skills can use some honing, but the cookies were soft, yummy and fun to make.

I bought a gingerbread house cookie cutter at Target, I also found this similar one on Amazon. We used a decorating set similar to this one.


Gingerbread Recipe Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ginger

You will also need icing (either homemade or store purchased) as well as edible decorative items like candy gumdrops.

How to Make Gingerbread Cookies:

Preheat oven to 375
Cream shortening and sugar. Beat one egg and molasses an add to mixture. Add dry ingredients and mix well. Roll out dough (not too thin) with rolling pin on flat surface sprinkled with flour. Use cookie cutter to create dough shapes and place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for 6-8 minutes. Let cool. Decorate!
Do you have holiday cookie making traditions?

15 Hikes in 2015

We are days away from our final trip to Rocky Mountain National Park in 2015. I was going through our ‘log book’ and realized we went on 15 hikes with our little girl this year in RMNP and surrounding areas. We hiked over 77 miles with her in Colorado and loved (almost) every moment of it.


I learned a lot about being a Mom on the trail – like how to plan ahead and also how to go with the flow. We made a big commitment to spending a lot of time as a family out in the mountains. For our family it helps us stay healthy, have fun and connect to each other, God and nature.

I’m very thankful when I think back on our list. I hope it’s even longer in 2016. Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas and an adventurous New Year!

  1. Deer Mountain, 6 miles
  2. Twin Sisters, 7.3 miles
  3. Bear Lake to Bierstadt Lake, 4.4 miles
  4. Indian Peaks Wilderness Area – Brainard Lake/Lake Isabelle, 7 miles
  5. Bear Lake to Emerald Lake Lookout, 6.8 miles
  6. Lily Mountain, 3.6 miles
  7. Bear Lake to the Loch, 6 miles
  8. Cub Lake, 4.8 miles
  9. Bear Lake to Emerald Lake, 3.6 miles
  10. Wild Basin Trailhead to Ouzel Falls, 5.5 miles
  11. Fern Lake Trailhead to Fern Falls, 5.2 miles
  12. Bear Lake Trailhead to Mills Lake, 5.6 miles
  13. Longs Peak Trailhead to Estes Cone, 6.6 miles
  14. Lumpy Ridge Trailhead to Gem Lake, 3.6 miles
  15. Lily Lake/Lily Ridge 1.3 miles

*Miles are approximate

Magical Holiday Fun in Kansas City

We love outdoor adventures, but we’ve had a few windy, cold days and needed to get some energy out. Our first stop was Santa’s Gingerbread Station at Crown Center.  The interactive exhibit is free but there is a charge for a picture taken with Santa. Covered garage parking is also free if you get your ticket validated by one of the shops or restaurants at Crown Center.


Next we took advantage of The Link which is a weather protected walkway connecting Crown Center to Union Station.

Union Station is my favorite building in Kansas City. I think my one-year -old shared my amazement at how magical the historic train station looks decorated for the holiday season. Entering the Sprint Festival Plaza I had a sudden urge to twirl around in circles like a Disney princess, which I resisted and instead walked around enchanted by the décor and holiday model train display. The display is free and quite impressive with over 800 feet of track and 18 trains.

There is so much more to do throughout the season at both Crown Center and Union Station! I can’t wait to take Cecy back next year.

Largest Indoor Tree in Kansas City at Union Station