Sunday, December 24, 2017

Merry Christmas on Day 24....

~ Greetings and Warm Welcome to ~
Day 24
Well...
I've got some notes and e-mails and a messages asking if I'm OK and I am. I'm fine. I realize we lost a few days there and I'm sorry to say with it being Day 24, this will be the final installment of The 25 Days of Christmas. I started off on a roll and as people got off of school and the rush of the season happened, I found myself with less and less time and a little unmotivated to share. Next year we are going to have to take a look at maybe not doing the 25 days or perhaps revamping it. It is really a time suck because I try very hard to make it special and give good information and I ran out of steam this year. It's all good. Life happens and as a good friend of mine told me recently - you celebrate each day and put to rest what needs to be put to rest rather than rehashing over and over.

This morning at Mass....
the final Sunday in Advent the priest said something very poignant: God wishes us to be our very best and essentially (I'm summarizing here) being our best is what we have to explore, it isn't about being "better than" someone else, rather being the best example of His gifts granted us and therefore letting our little light shine. I needed to hear this. I beat myself up a lot. I expect more out of myself than most and I accomplish a whole lot on a given day, however if I don't hit every mark that I have on my list, I beat myself up. I've been beating myself up a lot this year and a whole lotta years before. My biggest problem in life: learning how to love myself.
That's something I'm going to explore more and figure out in 2018.

Joy....
I have a lot of joy in life and one of my greatest joys is: doing for others. That's when I'm happiest. 
Thursday and Friday were spent making cookies. (My Cookie Recipe that I use and the Royal Icing Recipe that I use and every technique and every little thing that I learned about decorating cookies was learned from The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle. Questions that I have gotten before about my cookies - and this year too since people have been questioning me on IG and FB: I do not use corn syrup in my icing. The icing is essentially egg white powder, water, baking emulsion and that is it. I use water to thin it to either flood consistency or piping consistency. My cookies are delicious. They are soft and chewy)

Snowmen 2017 Trees 2017 Light bulbs Felt Hats

approximately 250 iced cookies...
plus we made:
Mexican Wedding Cakes
Butter Balls
Dutch Butter Cookies
White Chocolate drop cookies
Peanut Butter Chip Cookies
Macadamia Nut Cookies
Snickerdoodles 
Jam Thumbprints
M&M Wreaths
Rolo Turtles
and 
caramels

I've made approximately 10 of these Cookie Gift Boxes for our friends and Neighbors.
This particular box went to a party today and was gifted to Katie's Boyfriend's parents:

Cookie Tray 2017

I feel like that was a special gift to receive and it was filled with love from my and Katie's hands as she helped me make each cookie in some way or another.

Handmade gifts....
are special. As you all know Ellie is quite the artist. She made her student teacher a gift and I framed it...she is holding a honey badger (it's an inside joke - I'm not privy to)
Ellie Art_Student Teacher

She asked her three teachers what was their favorite Book or Movie Character and then she drew them for their Christmas gifts:
(L-R) Star Wars, Guardian of Ga'hoole Barn Owl, Harry Potter
Ellie Art_Teachers

She also did special drawings for her sister and Austin. Austin is a long boarder and here is their drawing (I framed this but it is wrapped already)
(the likeness she captured of Austin is remarkable)
Ellie Art _ Austin and katie

She also drew a picture of Ian and his girlfriend Edie, but I already framed them and they are under the tree. It is remarkable and I will get a picture of Edie holding it to share next blog post. I am so proud of Ellie (who just turned 12 in August, if you will remember) and her incredible God given talent of art. 

Happy day 24!

This will be my final post for the 25 days series. I'm going to take some time for me. I need it. I need to learn to slow down a little bit and take care of me.

Until I write again....
please know that I will be praying for all who follow me here on my blog, YouTube, Instagram and wherever. You are my friends. You are my people. You are my family. I am thankful for what you bring to my life. Thank you, for supporting me by your random acts of kindness from your kind words, letters, cards, notes and comments. 
Thank you!

When the infant Jesus lays in his manger this evening at midnight mass, I shall pray for all of us, I shall pray for our world, I shall pray that there be greater kindness and more love in the world for us all to enjoy! He listens....

Merry Christmas,
Vonna xxxx

36 comments:

  1. Merry Christmas Vonna! May peace and love be with you tonight, tomorrow and always. God Bless.

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  2. Merry Christmas Vonna! I have so enjoyed watching your videos this year and you helped me make some special Christmas gifts this year. You are a very special person and very talented. Your daughter's drawings are fabulous and what a way to give super special gifts to her friends and loved ones. Can't wait to see more of what she does in the future. Blessings to you and yours!

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  3. Vonna, what a wonderful way to end your 25 days in 2017 with this post. Your cookies are incredible and I know are enjoyed by many. Ellie's art work is simply fabulous; what talent she has been gifted. Wishing you and your family peace and joy today, tomorrow and as we close out 2017. Merry Christmas!

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  4. Merry Christmas Vonna! Always enjoy your content. I learn so much from you! Didn't want to pressure you to show us your cookies, in case you didn't get to them this year. BUT THEY LOOK FABULOUS! Thx for sharing them ( - : That gift box - wow! What a gift! I wouldn't want to ruin the presentation by eating them! LOL! Ellie - MY, MY, MY! She just keeps improving! Can't wait to see the one of Ian and Edie. I can't draw a straight line and appreciate others' talents so much. She is so, so talented. Well enjoy your family traditions and know that we all appreciate you and your sharing so much. Luv ya!

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  5. Merry Christmas Vonna! God Bless you and your family.

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  6. Merry Christmas to you and your family !!
    I've enjoyed your Christmas blog and know it is a lot of work. Thanks for all you share with us.
    Another year comes to an end and we look forward to the new year. May it be full of joy and surprises.
    Take time for yourself.....you are worth it !!

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  7. Bless you, Vonna. Yes, all we have to be is the best version of ourself. Thank you for sharing your time and talents with us and your beautiful family. I pray a little " me time" will leave you content.
    Merry Christmas!!

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  8. wishing you and yours a sweet and love filled merry christmas vonna. ellie's talents grow more amazing every year. hmmmm, i think maybe that fabulous cookie box was delivered to the wrong address, drats. oh well, i'll keep an eye on the mailbox til mine arrives lol! xo

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  9. God bless you and yours, Vonna. May our Lord and Savior be with you at this special time and throughout the year. I so enjoy your friendship and teaching; you are a precious person!

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  10. Thank you for sharing your priest's beautiful message, photos of your beautiful cookies, and Ellie's beautiful art. Many blessings to you and your family this season and always. Enjoy some richly deserved relaxation time...and your new Jim Beam glasses ;)

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  11. Merry Christmas to you and yours. Your cookies are beautiful as is your daughters art. Thanks for sharing and take care of yourself.

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  12. Merry Christmas to you and your family!

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  13. Merry Christmas to you and your family. I appreciate all that you share. Whether its once a month or 25 days in a month or somewhere in between. Your spirit shines through. Enjoy your time with your family. Spend some time being kind to your self. Wishes for a calm and peaceful Christmas. Happy New Year.

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  14. Vonna dear - I suspect you are a treasure...bless you for all your inspiration and sharing... Those cookies are outstanding...lucky recipients. Can see where your Daughter's creative talents have split off of the DNA....
    Above all I embrace your Christmas wish prayer and echo it
    in this world so in need of calm, peace and light. May you
    and yours have a most blessed Christmastide.

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  15. Merry Christmas, Vonna! Your box of Cookies looks just lovely.

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  16. Merry Christmas Vonna - wishing you a lovely Christmas with your family and some time to rest and Stitch!

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  17. All the blessings of Christmas to you and your family! Remember, you need to take care of yourself so that you can be there for others!

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  18. Merry Christmas! God bless you and your lovely family. Thank you so much for all that you've done for everyone (especially me!) Much love. May God continue to richly bless your family in 2018!

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  19. Merry Christmas to you and your family Vonna!

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  20. Thank you, Vonna, for all the posts of the 25 Days in December. I was enjoying them a lot. This post is a worthy final post of the series showing us all the great cookies you made and Miss Ellie's wonderful art. I hope you will get a lot of rest the following days.
    Merry Christmas to you and your family!

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  21. Thank you for your blog and your positive and encouraging words. Merry Christmas to you And your family ... from a long time reader, first time commenter 😁

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  22. Thank you Vonna for all you share especially your sweet gentle spirit! Your daughter is very talented. Please take time for you! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and yours!

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  23. Merry Christmas Vonna to you and your family! Such a beautiful post! your cookies look amazing and Ellie's artwork is beautiful! I hope you have a wonderful Chiristmas and a happy healthy new year!

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  24. Merry Christmas to all of you! I am so glad to hear you are taking time for you! I would appreciate prayers for my shoulder. I am having the MRI on Wednesday. Thank you Vonna.

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  25. Joyeux Noël Vonna, thank you for your love of cross stiching ! Be nice to you in 2018 ! We all love your work !

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  26. Your cookies look delicious! Wish I was one of your neighbors.
    Take all the time you need for yourself. You deserve it!

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  27. Merry Christmas and have a great rest

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  28. Merry Christmas Vonna. I am using the rest of this year to reflect and consider how best to approach the coming year. Learning to love one's self is a great foundation on which to build.

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  29. hope you had a great Christmas Vonna - you DO DESERVE some *ME* time! I enjoyed the 25 days postings but certainly understand they must be very time consuming to produce. Since I have a blog myself - I realize the time it takes to take or find photos, post and do the writing. Wishing you peace, prosperity, happiness and health in 2018 - love you and love what you do - Mel

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  30. Hey everyone tells me I need to do more for myself too so when you figure it out let me know haha. Doesn't matter if you do 1 or 25 your posts are amazing and filled with great information and LOTS of love. Thanks for sharing and taking your time. I've enjoyed each word.

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  31. Merry Christmas Vonna, please don't feel you have let us down. You have inspired us all. You even have got me talking to God a lot more. To everything there is a purpose. I don't think you realize what a wonderful difference you have made to many lives. I love x stitching and it brought me to you. Will I be prolific at my age, NO. But enjoying the journey is what it is all about. Family is the most important and you and your husband have cultivated good citizens. All the best in 2018

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  32. Merry Christmas Vonna and family! Wow Miss Ellie's artwork is amazing. What a talented artist already. The cookie gift boxes look too good to eat.

    Hope you are having a wonderful Christmas.

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  33. Hope you had a Merry Christmas. Good to read you are taking time for yourself. I am waiting to read about your Christmas sampler start when you come back to the blog. Happy New Year!!!

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  34. Vonna, don't forget that in our journey to be more like Christ we have His Holy Spirit who helps us conform more and more into His image. We don't have to do it on our own, we can't anyway. Spending time in prayer and meditating on Holy Scripture makes us more sensitive to the still, small voice or promptings of the Paraclete our helper. I'm continuing to pray for you! You are a blessing to us and so many others!

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  35. I love the message that you heard at Mass, Vonna...and it is so true. I'm "just a bit" older than you--ha (almost 20 years!) and I've learned to say "no" more often and to try to put my own mental health first. I know when I've reached my limit which is one reason I retired this year. I just had too much on my plate and that was one thing that I could do without. I'm happy to see you put an early deadline on your finishing projects next year. This will give you more time to enjoy yourself, your family, and those special holidays of Thanksgiving and Christmas the way YOU want to :) Wishing you every happiness in this coming year, my friend!

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  36. Ellie is super talented! Your cookies are AMAZING! I also need to work on loving myself and taking care of myself. That's something I too will work on in 2018. Hugs and prayers.

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My sincere thanks for taking the time to comment!
~Vonna
The Twisted Stitcher