This is a sponsored post
“What exactly are we doing tonight, Mommy?” Emily asked as we hopped in the car again after a string of events on a busy Sunday. After a day of selling barrettes benefitting the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation at a local synagogue, launching her rocket with her fellow Girl Scouts, a stop at the craft store for more ribbon barrette supplies, and a bit of down time at home, we were off again. While we had had an epic day so far, I was looking forward to an evening with friends and a chance to continue our holiday tradition of gingerbread house making that didn’t involve any set up or cleanup.
In the car we talked about the new Make Meaning at Bethesda Row. For my crafty kids, the idea of a place where you can go to make soap, candles, wearable or functional glass pieces, sit down to paint pottery, or decorate cookies, was quite appealing. And so was the idea of decorating this year’s gingerbread houses using their houses and assortment of candy while doing something to benefit others.
On weekdays between December 15-January 4, 2015, Make Meaning Bethesda Row is offering Gingerbread House Decorating Activity for $9.99 per person and when you decorate your gingerbread house, you’re purchasing an activity for a child at The Children’s Inn at National Institutes of Health (NIH). Full details on this offer below.
About Make Meaning Bethesda Row
When we arrived at Make Meaning, the bright, colorful space was instantly inviting especially with a long table featuring a candy bar of assorted candy decorations far better than we ever would have at our house and novelty items.
Trees, reindeer, and shiny packages waiting to be used on the many undecorated gingerbread houses that served as blank canvases for our group.
As I stared at the table, the wheels in my head started turning. And so did the kids’. From the oldest middle schooler to the almost-preschooler in our group, there was plenty of candy to meet everyone’s creative needs. Since we couldn’t sit back and just let our kids have all the fun, the adults jumped in too and for an hour and a half, we let our children have their fun while we had ours.
When we stepped back to look at our masterpieces, they truly were. Each child and adult in our group had a different vision for the same candy that had been laid out on the table. White cotton candy covered entire houses or just sprinkled the cardboard base of others. Plastic reindeer awaiting Santa stood atop roofs or decorated front yards. Roofs were decorated with icing swirls, diamonds, or more traditional scallops but each featured a different candy decoration. The creativity was astounding!
The best part of it was when we were done, we presented our homes to the lovely staff who wrapped them up and for us to bring home. I felt a bit guilty leaving behind a pile of wreckage from the candy cane wrappers, cotton candy, and the multiple packages of gummies used but the accommodating staff assured me it was their job to clean it all up. And they did. As we headed out, candies that had rolled on to the floor and under tables was being corralled into dustpans to tidy the space for the next group.
As I walked to the car, I thought about our gingerbread house making tradition and the amount of time, money, and effort is spent shopping for candy, making the icing, decorating, and cleaning up. As much as I love the process, cleaning up dried royal icing is never fun. Outsourcing our family’s gingerbread house decorating this year was a treat and while it sounds costly, it wasn’t.
Decorate Your Gingerbread House for $9.99 at Make Meaning Bethesda Row to Benefit The Children’s Inn at NIH
Between December 15-24, Make Meaning Bethesda is offering their Gingerbread House Decorating Activity for $9.99 (regularly $49.99) with this downloadable coupon. Print it out, fill it out, and bring it in any weekday (Mondays 10 am-5 pm or Tuesday-Friday 10 am-7pm) and when you do, you’ll be purchasing a Make Meaning Activity to a child at The Children’s Inn at National Institutes of Health (NIH).
The Children’s Inn at NIH is a private, non-profit residence for families and their children who are participating in pediatric research at the National Institutes of Health’s Clinical Center. The Inn provides a free family-centered environment that’s designed to serve as their home when they’re at NIH for the treatment for their chronic or life threatening illness and through this crafty partnership, children are able to come to Make Meaning Bethesda Row to enjoy creative activities that helps take their mind off their illness. For kids who need to stay at NIH, Make Meaning brings activities to them.
We had a wonderful time creating our gingerbread houses at Make Meaning Bethesda Row this year and hope you do too especially as you support the National Institutes of Health’s Clinical Center and the children at The Children’s Inn.
Please know that Make Meaning doesn’t offer any information about this special offer through their website but you’re welcome to share the coupon link with others. Fine print: Limit one per person and while supplies last. Space is limited. First come, first served. No reservation necessary.
Interested in learning more about Make Meaning?
This video from Best of New York 2011 highlights Make Meaning as the Best Crafting Hub though visit your local Make Meaning outpost for the most recent pricing on their activities.
I participated in this sponsored campaign on behalf of One2One Network. All opinions stated are my own and my fellow gingerbread house decorators.