This special Christmas Ornament is so totally awesome...the photo just doesn't do it justice! It is called "Willy's Gift" and was designed (and stitched) by Michelle Lutzen of Stitchy Kitty. This ornament was part of The Busy Needle Diabetes Ornament Tree, a yearly fundraiser benefiting local diabetes charities. This is the 10th year Sara has hosted this increasing popular fundraiser...and each year, she outdoes herself. This year included the "always talked about" ornament tree (with a cross stitch freebie packet available with donation), an eBay auction, and raffle items...and the festivities continue through December 31st...visit The Busy Needle webpage for more details on this fantastic cause. I was lucky enough to be the high bidder on this fabulous ornament...signed on the back by the designer! If you are not familiar with Stitchy Kitty designs, please check out Michelle's website...her fun and whimsical designs always make me smile....and she even has some freebie treats just for stopping by! (I know what you are thinking...Belinda, you really need to get a Christmas tree...)
Next, "something elegant"...how gorgeous are these beaded needlework accessories?! The were made by Tommye at TJB Designs...and I absolutely LOVE them. Check out the TJB Designs Etsy Store for more of these great accessories...my pieces in the photo include a scissor fob, counting/marking pins, and three needle threaders...and I love them all! Tommye does a fabulous job...the craftsmanship was top notch and even the packaging was special...and as a nice surprise, she included a brand new shiny needle with my order! For an additional treat visit her blog (she gets more stitching projects done than anyone I know!)...I have been having fun following her holiday list and seeing all the amazing gifts she has been making...
Finally, "something sweet"...last night we had a holiday party to attend and of course I brought a tray of cookies. These are one of my favorites (and my husband likes them too!)...
Peanut Butter & Chocolate Star Cookies
1 bag chocolate stars
1/2 cup shortening
3/4 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Granulated sugar (for rolling dough before baking)
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Beat shortening and peanut butter in large bowl until well blended. Add sugar and brown sugar; beat until fluffy. Add egg, milk, and vanilla; beat well. Stir together flour, baking soda, and salt; gradually beat into peanut butter mixture. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll in granulated sugar; place on ungreased baking sheet. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Immediately press a chocolate star into the center of each cookie; cookie will crack around edges. Remove from baking sheet to wire rack. Cool completely. This recipe makes about 4 dozen "yummy" cookies.