GingerBread Lane 2007-2008. What can I say but wow, where did it go. As I sit here at my in laws home in Pennsylvania on Christmas Eve, all I can think to myself is where did the season go already. In 7 days it will be time to again say goodbye, and that is something I am never ready to do. But, these next 12 days will be hectic as all get out. After a nice restful and relaxing day tomorrow, it is full speed ahead planning for the 2008-2009 season. First, the day after Christmas I get up early early early and head out to hit the sales. That usually lasts 3 or 4 days, with some spillage into early January. On January 1st, I will show up at the mall, sad, and get ready to facilitate the give away. A few hours later, it will all be broken down and cleaned up. Then a few days of putting stuff away at home, then a meeting to wrap it up with mall management, then onto planning for 2008. If you do not start planning right away for the next year, there is no way for the next year to happen. It really is a year round effort.
Back to this year. The mall offered me a chance at the end of last season to go with an opening day that coincided with the arrival of my good friend Santa Claus. I was conflicted at first, because the day after Thanksgiving had become a tradition for me. And a good one, because, no host site is ever open on Thanksgiving, so it always gives me 36 or so hours of uninterupted time with no one in sight to work on it. This would shorten that window to 12 hours. But after considering, I decided the obvious choice was to say yes, as not only would it give me a chance to finally have a normal Thanksgiving with family, but a normal Holiday season with my wife. And to boot, the normal GingerBread Lane season is 25-40 days. This actually lengthened it all the way to a 54 day run, which, I loved.
Good season, I can honestly say this is the 2nd best I have ever done. Second straight year I have said that. I felt at times it would be my best, but in the end, I am going to stick with 2nd best to the 2003 village. But, with what I am now finally getting good at ( interiors of houses, brick work, signage, 2nd and 3rd floor windows ) I feel I have the tools to make 2008 THE BEST EVER. Simple changes too, brick sidewalks throughout The Lane, railroad tracks with gravel throughout The Lane, doubling all the trees in size, and filling in the last major hole in the layout to use as a .................get ready.......Christmas tree lot, it will be my best ever.
Check on my webpage, www.gingerbread-lane.org, for all of the details.
And since I do not believe in doing pictures behind a cut, this will take up a lot of space on your screens. Sorry, I post 3-5 times a year, so this is just how I roll.
The crowd awaiting the unveiling
Right after the curtains came down, over 23 of my coworkers and comanagers showed up.
Fifteen minutes later
An arial of the village
The marquis welcoming everyone to The Lane
Cinnamon and Nutmeg Railroad
The world famous Plum Pudding Hotel. My best ever.
GingerBread Lane Town Hall
Cecil's Pie Bakery, done for my grandfather.
GumDrop Row, my favorite subdivision
Faye's Famous Pierogies, for my mother in law.
And for me, Jon's EggNog Distillery.