“…Can you remember, the smell of gingerbread, candy canes and sugar plums that dance inside your head?” (Kellie Coffey, “Can you Remember?” Believe in Holiday Magic, fireworks show in Disneyland.)

About 50 D23 members followed a gingerbread scent towards the second floor of Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen in Downtown Disney. Upon check-in, Chris from D23 welcomed us with Member auto license frames!

Our servers oriented us, as each reservation comes with two chairs across from each other. In between me and my first-time guest builder and friend, Linda, were all the parts laid out needed to build our masterpiece.

Some veterans, including myself, arrived with extra decorations and yard art. Our neighbors, a family of four, built one of their houses with Star Wars Characters!

Why attend a gingerbread house workshop? For me, I couldn’t remember the last time I made a holiday craft with my mother. So 15 years ago, my mother and I attended the inaugural Ralph Brennan’s workshop. That first time, we created a gingerbread house that collapsed before the two-hour session ended. To this day, we laugh how a creative disaster got traded up to a beautiful holiday masterpiece. My mother was a real estate agent even for gingerbread houses!

This Sunday, Executive Chef Darrin Finkel led the step by step workshop. When he reminded us of the anniversary, I was grateful that he’s led seven workshops where I created new memories with friends and family.

Hot beignets and beverages fueled our creative skills to follow the Chef’s instructions. And when the gingerbread house icing needed to set, there was a surprise visit from Santa Claus!

Almost two hours later, Linda and I were elated to have a standing gingerbread house!

My sincere thanks to D23 and Ralph Brennan’s for adding to my holiday memories. Linda ended up taking our gingerbread house to her workplace. Plus we made the house in the nick of time to celebrate National Gingerbread Day!