A couple of weeks ago we had a lovely friend, Ariel, who came to stay with us for a few days. The week leading up to her visit, my daughter Aria and son Nicolas persistently asked every morning and night; “Is she here yet?, Is she going to make pudding with us again?, Can she read to us every night?” Auntie Ariel, as they would call her, is one of their favorite aunties because she makes them feel special.

It has become Ariel’s tradition to make pudding with them, and chocolate is always preferred. And this year was no different. Naturally my kids were thrilled and were ready to stir the ingredients and lick the spoon!

But there was another surprise waiting for them. Ariel bought each of them a gingerbread house kit, which made my daughter squeal with joy and my son happy that he wouldn’t have to share with his sister.

Making the pudding was fun, and the kids made sure they each got a spoon to lick. Putting the gingerbread house together was more time consuming, but the kids had a blast. There was frosting to be spread and a variety of colorful and yummy candies to choose from.

Temptations lured as the sweets were at arms length, and my husband was the first to cave in. An hour later and a few sticky fingers to show for it, our two lovely gingerbread houses were finally finished.

It’s always a sweet time with Auntie Ariel. She loves spending time with our kids, and we love her visits. Aria and Nicolas were very sad when it was time for her to leave, but we know it won’t be long before she will return with a new batch of pudding to be made or a new activity to do and with it, another memory my children will cherish.

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