Building gingerbread houses isn’t the most popular Christmas tradition. But I have no doubt that there will be a lot more construction works after people check out what Aaron Keeling and his family are capable of. “My family have been making gingerbread houses for as long as I can remember,” he told Bored Panda. “But until about 10 years ago they were always very modest, tame, and traditional. Then one year we made a ski chalet with a working ski lift and ever since then we’ve been trying to outdo ourselves each year.”

2015: Gingerbread Overlook Hotel from ‘The Shining’

“We’ve made a working carousel, and a working windmill, and a working ferris wheel, as well as gingerbread scenes with running Kool-Aid streams. The past few years we’ve decided to focus less on moving parts and more on interior scenes, and we’ve also been leaning into recreating iconic horror films. It’s been a blast!”

Walls are covered with fondant and icing, the roof is covered with quinoa and powdered sugar, windows are made of melted jolly ranchers

“We’ve had a lot of crazy ideas, like Main Street USA in Disneyland, Neuschwanstein Castle, and Times Square. In the end it’s usually a pretty last minute decision, and then we have the fun task of scrambling to get the whole thing planned and finished before Christmas (which doesn’t always happen, sometimes it’s a few days into the new year before we’re completely done!)”

There are five interior rooms that depict scenes from the movie!

The first room is the hallway with the creepy little girls

“We use all sorts of materials to build our gingerbread scenes, and pretty much everything except the base and the lights are edible. There are pounds and pounds of gingerbread, as well as several pounds of icing and fondant, melted hard candies for the windows, chocolate, rice krispie treats, etc. etc. Recently we’ve started incorporating edible paper with images printed in edible ink which has been a lot of fun as well.”

“Come and play with us Danny…” Wallpaper printed on edible paper!

Another interior room on the side of the hotel

Jack and Wendy in the bathroom!


“Here’s Johnny!”


“My brother and I love horror, and have experience creating indie horror films and immersive theatre experiences. While not directly related, the down and dirty DIY experience of the work we do definitely crosses over to these creations. Meanwhile, my dad can build anything and my mom can make anything look beautiful, so it’s definitely a group effort. It’s a lot of work, but with everyone contributing it almost always turns out pretty well.”

The building is almost 4 feet long

Room 237

Carpet and pictures printed on edible paper!

Jack standing in the bathroom doorway

Jack is scared!


The decaying old woman in the tub!!!

Jack and the dead woman… imagine the creepy laugh from the movie

“Typically a few weeks to plan and bake and cut the pieces, and then about a solid week of construction and decorating. As I mentioned earlier, by the end we’re pretty worn out. There’s usually a declaration of ‘never again’ from my mom, and I doubt I’ll ever eat gingerbread again. But it’s a really cool family tradition and we’re always very proud of the result.”

Here’s the three story ballroom

What’s inside?

Wendy and a bunch of skeletons and cobwebs!

Dead people everywhere!


Check out those cobwebs! And look, even the dead are celebrating Christmas!

View from the top floor

And of course, no gingerbread Overlook Hotel would be complete without the blood spilled in the elevator

The blood is made of melted jolly ranchers



View of the maze from above. Made entirely from green Rice Krispie Treats


Danny runs out of the maze

Frozen Jack in the middle of the maze

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy!!! Made entirely out of gingerbread, icing, fondant, candy, and Rice Krispie Treats!

“We keep it on display for a few months until it starts to fall apart, and then we usually take it outside and get our frustrations out by bludgeoning it with an ax or baseball bat. Unfortunately this year we’ll be traveling for the holidays, so we won’t be making a new gingerbread creation. But we’ll be back next year, hopefully with something bigger and crazier and more elaborate than what we’ve already done!”

The making of:


We’ve also created A gingerbread Bates Motel from “Psycho” complete with five interior rooms depicting scenes from the movie in 2016

Notice mother’s silhouette in the upstairs window!

That neon sign, though…

Norman peeping through the hole in the wall into Marion’s room! Fun fact, the painting on the floor is the same one from the movie!

Shower rod made from painted noodles, curtain made from clear gelatin! And notice the tiny chocolate chip shower head!

A bit of a darker view to get a better idea of how the neon Bates Motel sign glows!

And in 2017 we made a Gingerbread Christmas Song village

Five houses, a church, a pond, and a spinning Christmas tree!

The church with marble-fondant walls.

House 1

‘I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus’

House 4

‘Santa Baby’

Santa’s sleigh taking off!

The village lit up at night!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!