Are you all ready for Christmas?!  It seems like no matter how early I start preparing for Christmas (and believe, me, I’ve been at it for months now) I just keep adding more to my list of things to make/ do.  Oh how I love Christmas time!  I’ve tried to not completely over-schedule myself, wanting to keep in mind the reason behind the Christmas celebration- which for me is about remembering Christ and also filling my heart with compassion and love and then acting on it.  I am touched by all the kindness I have witnessed or heard about this season.  That warm fuzzy feeling is the reason I decided to try an experiment over this past year: a series called Making the World Sweeter.  My hope was that (as Ebenezer Scrooge said in Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol), “I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.”  My original goal was to incorporate into my giving a monthly crafty project for charity other worthy project- and invite all of my readers to participate.  I did participate in some sort of giving each month and I was able to join and blog about eight projects- many of you also participated, which was awesome!  I have to say, I have felt good this year!  Although I wasn’t able to do a project every month, I feel like I stayed with my goal of being mindful of others and mindful of my giving.  I think an added bonus that I wasn’t expecting was an increased feeling of contentedness and gratitude for what I have.

Many of the projects in this “series” (which you can see if you click on the “Making the World Sweeter” link above) cost very little if anything, but had the ability to affect someone’s life profoundly.  Quite a few of the projects are ongoing, so if you are interested, take a look at some of the projects and you can still participate!  (Some of the projects include knitting or crocheting hats for newborn babies, making sanitary pads to help girls stay in school, sock monkeys for kids displaced by fires, and ideas for “drive-by” giving (for the homeless) to name a few.)

Anyway, I hope it has been a good year for all of you, and that you are enjoying this wonderful Christmas season!  I wish I could wish each of you a Merry Christmas and hand you a plate of cookies, but just know that I am sending goodwill and happy thoughts your way- yes you!

P.S: Because I like to be helpful, and I know that some of you might still need to come up with a few gifts for various people in your lives, here are a couple of ideas that might be of use:  😀

I made these crocheted stars found at Jellywares and I think they make sweet ornaments (thin yarn and small hook) or drink coasters (thicker yarn and medium hook).

Cinnamon ornaments/ gift tags are a lovely gift or package topper.

These pop top cans could be filled with Christmas goodies for a fun neighbor gift.

You might find some inspiration in our “Tutorials” section, fun things like:

Infant Scratch Mitts for the wee ones…

Easy Shower Caps (a colorful and unique addition to a spa- themed gift pack)…

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…Or these Chocolate Hazelnut Truffles– trust me, they are divine!

Wishing all of you the Merriest of Christmases!  See you next year!