1In large bowl, beat brown sugar, shortening, molasses and water with electric mixer on medium speed, or mix with spoon, until well blended. Stir in remaining ingredients. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
2Heat oven to 350°F. Grease cookie sheet lightly with shortening or spray with cooking spray. On floured surface, roll dough 1/4 inch thick. Cut with floured gingerbread cutter or other shaped cutter. On cookie sheet, place cutouts about 2 inches apart.
3Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until no indentation remains when touched. Immediately remove from cookie sheet to cooling rack. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
4In medium bowl, mix powdered sugar, vanilla and half-and-half until frosting is smooth and spreadable. Add food colors as desired. Frost cookies; decorate with raisins, chocolate chips and candies.