This is the fourth year in a row that daughter number 3 has hosted a gingerbread house making party. We provide the houses and the guests bring the candy. She is a nanny for two families, and those six children join us. We also invite the children of two girls that my girls grew up with. This year we had seven children. It was the first year for one of the children, this year he was old enough to sit on his mom's lap and help build his house. Next year, he's all on his own!
Daughters 3 and 5 spent eight hours making the houses, and I put them together with royal icing the next day. I try to be very careful when "building" the houses... in years past I have not been very successful when "building". If my frosting is not strong enough, the houses just fall apart. We let them dry overnight, so when the kids show up the houses are good and dry.
I love having the kids come over and decorate their houses. It's a lot of work putting the houses together, but it is worth it!!