This post was originally published at Novelicious.com and is now at WritingTipsOasis.com. WritingTipsOasis.com acquired Novelicious.com in June 2022.
As a mother you feel a lump in your throat and nerves at the pit of your stomach when your child walks into yet another new school. You want to go in for them, into that lion's den, though you know that will not help. It will, in fact, do the opposite.
So. What can you do? Your hands are tied.
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Or are they? Maybe, just maybe, you could bribe the children, these potential new friends, or potential new threats, with cake. With delicious sweet treats … worth a try, surely?
And that is exactly what Vianne Rocher, from Chocolat by Joanne Harris, did.
She didn't make it obvious. Oh no. Very subtle, very discreet.
When the children came into her shop and admired the gingerbread house. An amazing gingerbread house with walls of chocolate, roof tiles of florentines and marzipan birds, Vianne was clever. She'll need some help to eat it, she said to them. Anouk, her daughter, will tell them when it will be ready to be eaten. She goes on, the clincher: "It's a pity she doesn't have any friends yet, because I told her she could ask them over. You know, to help me with the displays."And with that all the children wanted to be Anouk's friend.
Gingerbread houses are perfect for Christmas. Use this Mary Berry recipe to guide you and go to town with your decoration. Use boiled sweets for windows, icing for the snowy roof and whatever other sweets you fancy.
I always make one in time for Christmas Eve. It has become a tradition in our house for the children to help decorate it then to smash it up in front of the fire in the evening.
Because, as Vianne Rocher knows, what child can resist a gingerbread house?