Gingerbread is such a classic Christmas treat, that the season just wouldn't seem complete without it! Throughout the month of December, gingerbread houses--decked out in icing and licorice and gum drops and peppermint--grace many a dining room table along with families of gingerbread men and women. Telling the story of the gingerbread man is almost as fun as making and eating the cookies themselves.
There once was a very old woman who had never had a child of her own. One day, as she was baking gingerbread, she was thinking about the little boy she wished she'd had and without realizing it, began to shape the dough into the shape of a person, even adding little raisins for eyes and a jacket with gumdrop buttons. She wished so hard for a little boy of her own, that when she opened the oven to pull out the finished cookie, he lept off the baking sheet and ran out the door!
The old lady shouted for the gingerbread man to come back, but he ran down the hill singing: "Run, run as fast as you can! you can't catch me, I'm the gingerbread man!";
He passed a cow in the field that tried to take a bite out of him, but he was too fast. "You can't catch me"; he laughed, I'm the gingerbread man!";
He kept running until he met a fox down by the river who offered to give him a ride across on her back.
"You just want to eat me!"; exclaimed the gingerbread man.
"No, no, no,; cooed the fox, "I don't even like gingerbread, and besides, you can't swim across the river by yourself--you'll crumble apart if you touch the water!";
Knowing this was true, the gingerbread man climbed on the back of the fox, who swam out into the deepest part of the river, then she twisted her head around and snatched the gingerbread man off her back and gobbled him all up! "My, my, it looks like I do like gingerbread after all";