Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Twisted Stitcher, year in review...

~ Greetings Dear Friends ~
Its the very last day of the year, it hardly seems possible to me.  I created a collage with some random things from our year. There was a lot of creating, a lot of good times, some celebrations, some vacations and a whole bunch of blessings. God has so richly and generously blessed us (and particularly me) that its hard to look back over the year and not see Him in every step along the way. Of course there is always struggle, always strife, always heartache, always disappointments but I strive to keep in perspective that each of those things that I encounter on my path in life only does one thing. It makes me stronger, makes me better than what I was before. 

So may I present my 2013:

The Christmas was put away...
and it is always a bittersweet time for me. I can't wait to get it up, and in most years I can't wait to get it down ~ the old double edged sword. :) 

But we took down and I'd like to share with you my ornaments I have stitched through the years 
(not including those stitched in 2013)
Ornaments through the years

Here are the ornaments I have received through the years from friends and exchanges I've participated in:
Friends Ornaments through the years

These are the ornaments I stitched this year alone (minus 6 that were presents):
2013 Ornaments Stitched

I told you I was going to count my ornaments...
and I did, even wrote it down, but guess what? I lost the paper! Scatter brain...
Anyway, the number was way less than I thought. I do know I stitched 29 ornaments this year for our tree. I had around 39 from friends. And the overall total number was around 150 ornaments. I thought I had 200, I must have been drinking when I was putting up the tree ;)
(Ha! I always put the tree up with a bottle of wine. Less stress!)

With the Christmas decorations...
taken down, I like clean and simple to start off the new year. I decorate our outside as well as the inside with the seasons too. Since at Christmas I had ornaments hanging from our eaves at the front door, I thought it looked so cute, I had purchased some silver snowflakes and never used them at Christmas, so....I hung them for winter!

Here is our Winter Door:
Winter Front Door

My favorite detail...
is the vintage skates and sled. I am in love with this little sled, that belonged to my husband when he was a child. His Mom brought it up for us last summer and I knew exactly what I would do with it! The skates were my aunt's when she was a little girl that I rescued from the get rid of it pile a few years ago. 
Keith's Sled

So...
with the recap and the fresh, clean start in the house that leads my mind to resolutions for the new year... However like a perfectly reasonable young man pointed out yesterday, whilst I read away on my blogroll..."resolutions beg to be broken". Amen! 

In my 42 years of life...
I have found that I stink at resolutions, but when it comes to life plans, or schedules, or organizing or planning...I'm pretty good! So what am I going to do? I'm going to have a plan! And I'm going to execute that plan as meticulously as I can. 

What does my plan entail...
well, who knows for sure. I have vague plans for my big plan but for the most part I think they are pretty firmly set:
I am going to continue my daily exercise regiment. I exercise every day. Period. And have for the past three years. I don't think of it as I have to or else. I think of it like: I do it. AND although I may hate it before I do it and hate it for a good part while I'm doing it, AFTERWARD...I feel great. My mood is enhanced, my spirits are up and I move through my day a better person because I rolled my arse out of bed at 4:40 a.m. and got to it! If I don't do it like that, it won't get done. I've learned that. So I do it and I will continue to do it because when I don't do it...I feel like crap. all. day. 

+

Of course I want to try to lose weight, that is a constant battle. I've got the exercise down great! I need to get the eating down.

+

I want to continue to try to become a better person, Lord knows I'm not perfect, I have many flaws. But I try really hard to live a life that is good. That is in service to others. I have a spiritual adviser that has helped me to make decisions about my life this year, that has made me better. My goal is to continue that in 2014 and beyond. There are always bumps and bleeps and valleys and mountains to be forged along anyone's life path. But one of the things I learned in 2013 is that I need to quit beating myself up, focus on me and focus on those that care for me and forget the rest. I can't be everything to every person. But I can sure as heck be as much as ever to people who love me, respect me and want me in their life. That is freedom. That is living. And it only took me 42 years to realize it.

+

And finally...you all know I'm not me if I'm not dabbling in crafting. I have really only one goal in my plan for stitching. I've said it before and never got it done. I'm saying it again. I want a Prairie Schooler Santa Tree. And you want to know what I did? I bought a 4 1/2 foot tree on clearance and I am going to set about stitching my Santas. I can do it. I will do it! Got the first one kitted, in my project envelope, ready to roll! I'm not going to make schedules and say one per month, or any of that garbage. I'm just saying I'll have a Santa tree, if that means one Santa hanging on the tree....well that means one Santa. We shall see, right? I also would like to do another 25 days with The Twisted Stitcher. We shall see. I put a lot of pressure on myself to pull that together this year. But I totally enjoyed it, we'll see. ;)

With all the blabbering going on above...
I'd like to end with something that you all came here to see anyway. Here is another Tim Holtz Pocket Watch Necklace, that I have made for a very special someone. I just got it done last night. It is in the mail and zipping to the person as we speak. I hope they love it as much as I do, because I love it a lot and it was hard to package and send away. May I present:

"Snow Bird Pocket Watch" Snow Bird Pocket Watch
I stitched this using:
"Snow Bird Pinkeep" pattern by Brenda Gervais ~ With Thy Needle and Thread
1 over 1 on 32 ct. French Blue linen
Using called for colors

And with that folks...
that is my 2013 in review with 2014 in my headlights. It is my wish that each of you who visit with me have a healthy, happy, blessed 2014 with a heavy emphasis on abundant blessings.
Take time to slow down, to view the colors around you, to give thanks to all that has been given, to enjoy the moment because you just never know how many more moments you will enjoy.
Savor. Relish. Live. And Give Thanks. 
That's what its all about!

Until next time my dear friends...
Thank you for your words, thank you for your visits, I don't just gather them to be forgotten, I gather them and hold them close and savor each and every word. You all make a difference in my life! Thank you for your friendship!

Vonna xxxx

72 comments:

  1. All the ornaments and stitches are just wonderful!!!! I know your lucky friend will be amazed to receive the gorgeous stitched pocket watch also~ soooo special!!! Here's to a blessed 2014 to you and yours my friend~. Faye

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  2. Beautiful Post Vonna! I wish you a wonderful New Year filled with many Blessings!!
    RaggedyStitches
    Louise xx

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  3. I loved everything about this post, dear Vonna ... beautiful photos and truly inspiring words from a truly special person and friend! Wishing you and yours all things wonderful in the New Year! Sending hugs to you! - Cindy.

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  4. Wonderful, heartfelt post, Vonna! With these thoughts 2014 is sure to be special!

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  5. A wonderful post to end the year. Vonna, you are an angel :) Blessings for a wonderful 2014.

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  6. Vonna - I wish we lived closer to each other to provide some mutual motivation! I have the eating part down, just fail miserably on the exercise part. You've had a beautiful year of crafting and always provide inspiration, I'm looking forward to seeing more in 2014.

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  7. Beautiful ornaments Vonna! The stitched pocket watch you made is gorgeous. Oh you are going to make someone very happy when they receive it. You are so thoughtful. Good for you picking up a tree on clearance for you PPS Santa's you plan to stitch. How exciting. I wish you a very blessed filled New Year and thank you for your friendship Vonna. love Annette

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  8. Oh how lovely!! Happy New Year!

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  9. I am always thankful for every year I have been blessed and I am thankful each and every day. Yes, our family has had some illnesses and hard times but I always think - things could get worse. My goal is to have a Santa Cross Stitch Tree for 2014.
    Love all your post and knowing you sing in your choice is such a wonderful gift, music is happiness for me.

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  10. Hi Vonna - I thank you for your fabulous blog and for giving us so much pleasure with your many talents and for sharing your family with us. I sent you an email and I hope it will give you back some of the pleasure you've given me. Happy New Year - and I've been looking at the Tim Holz stuff @ Michaels. Wow! What work you have done this year. And to exercise "every day" for 3 years in a row...well, YOU GO GIRL!

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  11. wishing you a wonderful stitchy new year ... may you get your santas stitched your waist line down ... (think I shall have to join you on that one ) and that you continue to delight us all with your stitching and finishing :) love mouse xxxx

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  12. Hi Vonna - what a wonderfully fun post! Thank you so much for sharing your stitching, family and your creativity and talent with us. Your blog is truly one of my very most favorites and it is always such a delight to find you've posted something new for all of us to enjoy.

    Many blessing to all of you and happy new year!


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  13. Thank you for a year of inspiration, Vonna. Your pieces are so beautiful and the finishing is perfection! I betting that you will get that PS tree finished. Happy, healthy, and prosperous new year to you and your family.

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  14. Beautiful piles of ornaments ! Love your porch decorated for winter ! Happy New Year and I hope everything goes well on the 2nd for you !!

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  15. What a thought provoking and inspiring post! Wishing you and yours many blessings in the coming New Year!

    Robin in Virginia

    PS Love the design you used in your latest watch fob.

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  16. Beautiful! Just beautiful Vonna! God bless you and your family in this new year.

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  17. A great summary of a great year. What a stitching machine you are! That pocket watch pendant is just fantastic...the icing on the cake of beautiful ornaments. Have a wonderful 2014!

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  18. Happy New Year, Vonna! I love your front door; it is absolutely beautiful. Looking forward to 2014 and visiting your blog as well.

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  19. Wonderful Post Vonna! Happy Healthy New Year!
    Que cette nouvelle année soit riche de projets, de rencontres et de belles surprises.
    Que 2014 t'apporte, ainsi qu'à ceux qui te sont chers, le meilleur.
    Bisxxx from France

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  20. Everything is so wonderful! The necklace is beautiful. I too am more about plans for 2014 than resolutions. I plan to do a post on my blog tomorrow listing what I have planned. Vonna, happy new year to you and your family. Your blog is at the top of my list each time I check Bloglovin and I am always excited to read your posts. I look forward to seeing what you stitch in 2014!

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  21. Oh I love that necklace! I'm sure the recipient will be thrilled to receive it! Love seeing all the pics from 2013. So many ornaments -- you are so amazing!! Wow! Happy New Year to you and yours.

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  22. OMW !!! Vonna that is SO gorgeous ( your fob) !! I really liked the ones you did for CCN & LHN ladies but I LOVE this one, you clever girl doing it with that sweet design. The porch looks pretty, I don't think I would dare leave treasures out the front I'd worry they would get taken even though I live in the poshy part of town. BUT, I may pinch your snowflake idea to hang from my hanging basket brackets :-) Have a great New Years Eve and thank you for popping by my blog it was good to read you x

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  23. You are truly an inspiration to me, in so many ways! Thanks for what you give of yourself to others and the thoughts that are behind it. The happiest New Year to you and yours!

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  24. Lovely post Vonna. I wish you many blessings this next year and many stitches too!!

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  25. Vonna, you are such an inspiration. I love the whole feeling of your New Year's plan. I am not good at resolutions either. Happy New Year and many more blessings to you and your family in 2014. Your blog is my favorite. I look forward to each and every post. Here' s to "seeing the new year" may your surgery go great! blyn

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  26. A fabulous post Vonna. Wishing you and yours a peaceful 2014 filled with happiness and stitching of course xx

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  27. Happy New Year!!!!!!!!!

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  28. Happy New Year Vonna!

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  29. All I can say is AWESOME! I love it all and your entrance way looks sooooo welcoming!

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  30. Happy New Year! I look forward to following you on your journey in the year ahead. And, I need to find some of those watches. They are so pretty! What a great idea.

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  31. I have no doubt that you'll have your PS tree with more than 1 ornament on it! I'm looking forward to seeing what you come up with for 2014. I like the idea of plans versus resolutions. Action.

    4am? Girl you are dedicated!

    Wishing your family a happy, safe and healthy 2014!

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  32. A beautiful heart felt post Vonna. I so enjoyed your 25 days of Christmas - I know it took planning and dedication and your stitching and finishing talent just amazes me. You are so creative. I hope you and your family have a wonderful new year with much happiness and health and many happy stitches. Melody

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  33. Love the latest pocket watch, gorgeous ! I have all the PS Santa and have never stitched one, you have now given me food for thought :) Happy New Year to you and your family.

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  34. Happy New Year to you too, Vonna! I just wanted to let you know you've inspired me. In March I do a Craft a Day, but I usually do it in "real time" (each craft the day before I blog about it). This year to cut myself some slack, I'm working ahead. Cheers.

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  35. I know if anyone can stick to their goals it will be you! I am pretty sure I will be seeing a PS Santa tree at the end of the year. In fact, I want one myself, I even bought a couple PS Santa charts in order to get myself in gear I love seeing all these fantastic ornaments and you have finished some pretty wonderful things this year. Your necklace finish is fabulous and the recipient is one blessed and lucky girl. I can[t wait to see what you inspire us with next!

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  36. It isn't how long you took to realize how to achieve freedom and how to live life...it is great that you did. It took me just as long to achieve that realization too. I wonder if there is something about the 40s...the time that many of understand life more clearly and then are able to really enjoy it from our 40s on. Oh well! Here is to 2014 - may love and laughter, happiness and health grace you and your family!

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  37. Happy New Year, Vonna.

    I really enjoyed your 25-days of Christmas and hope you WILL do it next year. You are truly my stitching inspiration!

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  38. Happy New Year Vonna! Wishing you and your family all the best in the year ahead!

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  39. Someone is going to squeal with delight when then open their mailbox and see that gorgeous pocket watch necklace!! Vonna, you are one awesome lady and give so much to this community of stitchers with your tutorials, words of wisdom and laughter. I wish you and your family all the best in 2014!

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  40. Very nice 2013 review and 2014 plan! I really want a stitched ornament tree as well...but have no where near the ornaments you have. Maybe someday. Your front door is simply inviting! And another adorable finish for the pocket watch. Happy New Year and blessings for a great 2014.

    Judy Heartland stitcher

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  41. Love the post. Happy New year

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  42. Happy New year! Beautiful ornaments...

    :) Sherry

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  43. You have a lot of ornaments. All so pretty. You post made me laugh and made me think. I didnt take my christmas stuff down, I dont like that part, but then again who does. I like the front door. Great idea with the sled and skates. Have a blessed new year.

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  44. I wish you all the best for the New Year!

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  45. Wishing you a wonderful and blessed New Year! I enjoyed reading your words today...thank you!

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  46. A wonderful review of 2013 - and a great look forward to 2014. I love how and what you share, and iook forward to more in 2014. Wishing you blessings, peace, and happiness in the New Year.

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  47. Beautiful ornaments. Happy New Year! Best of luck on your plans for 2014.

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  48. You have had a great year. I have to say, I love your revolving tree. Happy New Year.

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  49. Thanks for sharing another wonderful post. You have some wonderful ornaments and I really like the Snow Bird Pocket Watch. Wishing you and your family a wonderful 2014!

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  50. A beautiful post! I pray for your success in your plans for you this year!

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  51. Thank you for all your gifts of time & talent, and caring enough to share them with us it is truly appreciated. Many wise words if we could all just be truer to ourselves & kinder to each other that would be a great 2014! Many blessings to you & family in the coming year.
    Cheers!

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  52. Happy New Year to you too Vonna. May 2014 be everything you want it to be. A beautiful sweet finish too to wrap up 2013.

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  53. Happy New Year to you and your family

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  54. Absolutely fabulous piles of ornaments Vonna. I love your winter entrance - so fun and welcoming. Your friend is going to be thrilled with your gift. Looking forward to spending another year with you! :o)

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  55. Sounds to me like you did a lot of self discovery this year! Best wishes for a great 2014!

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  56. Such a wonderful review, and some great goals.
    Love all of your amazing ornaments, the sled and boots in your front porch are fab.
    The pocket watch is so pretty.
    Looking forward to your PS tree, no pressure !!!!! lol xxx
    Happy New Year to you and your family, Vonna
    Lots of love
    Linda O xxx

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  57. Wishing you and your family a happy new year

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  58. It's such a blessing to read your blog Vonna! It makes my morning! This year I have experienced the empty nest syndrome and alot of family "issues". Your words have been uplifting and I too am going to focus more on those that care for me, instead of those who try to knock me down. Life is too short to dwell on the negatives! A "light" just came into that cluttered brain of mine, and I might do a cross-stitch Christmas tree this year for my craft room! You have inspired me! I hope you have a wonderful New Year and "thank you" for sharing with us all!

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  59. Dear Vonna, I love reading your blog. Your ornament finishes are so inspirational. I have my own ornament tree. I have been stitching them since 1981 but my finishes over the years have not been the greatest. Since I have been reading your blog, they have gotten much better.
    Good luck with your goals for 2014. You are a wonderful person!

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  60. Happy New Year, Vonna, and thank you again for sharing your always creative and beautiful work!

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  61. Hello Vonna,

    Happy New Year to you and to your wonderful family. May it be everything you hope it will be and more.

    I read your post with interest and with admiration. Your plans for this year are admirable and I suspect
    that you will follow through with them to the best of your ability, and will have the wisdom to let those
    things that you cannot fully accomplish go without regret.

    Your crafting skills and your vision for turning cast off random objects into wonderful
    seasonal displays, or decorations or even jewellery is well known and a delight to us all
    who follow your blog. Not to mention an inspiration.

    Your pile of Christmas ornaments is astounding. Whether your own creations or those of your blogging
    friends they are all so wonderful I don't know how you can bear to pack them up at the end of the holidays.
    I know that you'll be creating fabulous new PS ornaments this year and your PS tree will no doubt be a
    delightful reality when the Christmas season rolls around again. Even if it is only one ornament hanging
    at the top of the tree.

    Warmest best wishes,

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  62. What a beautiful post, Vonna. Reading your words made me feel like you were MY spiritual advisor and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for that. I was feeling all rigid and "resolutions" before I visited your blog....now I feel more relaxed and happy. I'm going to take a step back and see whether my resolutions line up with my "plans". Praying for your eyes and your surgery. Hugs....

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  63. Thanks for sharing your December with us. I loved every minute of it, and went thru some "blogging withdrawal" myself on the 26th :) Wishing you and your family a wonderful 2014!

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  64. Wonderful year in review Vonna!! I love all the photos of your children and stitchings. That's an amazing number of ornaments stitched this year! You go girl!! Also, great attitude towards exercise. I need to do some of that myself...more often! You sound a lot more disciplined than me getting up at 4:40!! I think you are a wonderful person by the example of your children. We all could be better hence our daily spiritual struggle . Hugs and prayers to you and your family!

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  65. What a wonderful idea! A Prairie Schooler Santa tree....hmmm...very cool.
    You are an inspiration. Loved seeing your ornaments in review which reminded me about the pocket watch. I love that idea. This latest pocket watch was lovely. Thank you for your inspiration and sharing your talent with us. :)

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  66. Oh my, all these wonderful ornaments stitched by you or your friends. Looking at these pictures should give me a lot of motivation to do a little bit of ornament stitching this year.
    Enjoy the moment has been my inspiration for quite a while. And it lifts my spirits every day.
    Have a wonderful 2014!

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  67. God Bless You Vonna for sharing your beautiful stitching and your beautiful YOU with all of us! Lisa K

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  68. Great post Vonna! All of your amazing ornaments both given and received. I love your winter door. I think you have a great list of goals and resolutions for the year. I know that you will make them all happen. The Pocket watch piece is amazing!
    Happy New Year!

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  69. Here's to an awesome 2014! I think you have it covered.

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  70. You've had a wonderful year, Vonna--both stitching wise and with your beautiful family. I so look forward to each of your posts and want to thank you again for sharing all of your knowledge with us on how to become as good a finisher as you! You've helped me more than you know :)

    I am not one for making resolutions--just try to live each day with kindness and do the best I can. I am so proud of you for getting your exercise routine down pat--great job!! It really does energize you and make you feel good, don't you think? My sister-in-law lost a lot of weight two years ago by simply cutting everything she ate in half--half a cookie, half a sandwich, half a bowl of cereal. She exercised, too, of course, but it was amazing what a difference that simple change made. I think the difference between this and other diets, is there are no limits--you can still enjoy sweets or salty foods...just half of what you would normally eat. That way you aren't feeling deprived. Anyway...just wanted to pass that along to you :)

    I loved seeing your pile of ornaments--and, it's official--you definitely have more ornaments than me--I think I only have 105 :) I tried counting them as I took them off the tree, but had a few interruptions so who knows how accurate that count is.

    I hope your eyes are recovering well--it will be such a treat to see your way to the bathroom at night without having to grab those glasses :)

    Anyway, I've babbled on far too long--just want to wish you every happiness, dear Vonna. May 2014 bring you and your family much love, laughter, happiness, and good health!

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  71. Dear Sweet Vonna,
    That "very special someone" received the beautiful Snow Bird pocket watch necklace and yes, I LOVE and adore it (just sent you an email). Thank you from the bottom of my heart for the surprise package that was filled with wonderful treasures.

    Love you my friend!

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  72. Aha! I am commenting behind the person that you gifted! That is such a sweet piece! May 2014 be full of many blessings for you and yours!

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Thank you for following me on my blog. If you have any questions, please ensure that your e-mail is left or associated with your profile so that I may contact you. Or you may contact me personally at: thetwistedstitcher@comcast.net
My sincere thanks for taking the time to comment!
~Vonna
The Twisted Stitcher