Sunday, December 4, 2022

The 2022 Virtual Christmas Cookie Exchange Begins

My very first Virtual Cookie Exchange was in December 2013. I've had it every year since, except one year when I have no idea why it didn't happen. It's changed a bit and not everyone makes a sweet treat, but there is always Christmas goodness in fabric and projects!

Update: Whoops! I posted today instead of my real day. Joan at Moosestash suggested that "the season has melted my brain." Yep, I'd have to agree with that. 

Prancer's Favorite Christmas Treat

Prancer isn't fussy about what he eats, as long as it has Hershey's Kisses in it.
I had plenty of those and other leftover candy (from a retirement party and Halloween.)

The Kisses, pretzels, peanut butter cups, Rice Chex, Cadbury balls, nuts, and M&Ms all 
went in a big bowl. Sorry, I didn't measure anything...just dumped it all in a bowl.

I slowly melted some Ghirardelli white chocolate chips and almond white chocolate
together in a glass bowl and placed it in the microwave. You have to melt it slowly, in 30 second
 intervals, or it burns. Regular chocolate would be yummy with this, too.

Pour it over the goodies in the bowl. Stir it to coat all the pieces. Spread on a cookie
sheet that's lined with parchment paper or foil. Let cool. Break into pieces. Done!

These are perfect for small gifts and to-go treats for Prancer.

This recipe is from my first Virtual Cookie Exchange. It's still one of my favorites!
Really, they are delicious!

Ritzy Chocolate Mint Cookies

1/2 lb semi-sweet dark chocolate chips
2-3 drops peppermint extract
1 sleeve of Ritz Crackers
Some crushed candy canes

Melt dark chocolate over low heat or in a glass cup at 15-second intervals in the microwave (stir after each 15 seconds.) Stir 2-3 drops of peppermint extract into the melted chocolate (don't use too much peppermint--the 2-3 drops is plenty.) Using a fork or dipping tool, dip each Ritz Cracker in the melted chocolate. Place on a foil covered cookie sheet making sure they don't touch each other. Sprinkle each chocolate dipped cracker with a small amount of crushed candy cane. Chill. Eat. Enjoy.

This recipe is from December 2016. It is a little more work, but it is amazing and so delicious!

Chocolate Cheesecake Cookie Bar

When I was at the Garden of Quilts in Utah, I was walking by the Jillily Studio booth and noticed a Christmas pillow (Holiday Lane) in a corner. I was excited to see it because I had sewn one a long time ago during a blog hop. The designer of "Holiday Lane", Jill Finley of Jillily Studio, was in the quilt booth so I got to meet her. She is just the nicest lady!

Jill was so kind and said I could share her link to the free pillow pattern (HERE). There is even a kit available HERE.

Here's my 2022 version of Jill's "Holiday Lane"' pillow pattern.
I used Benartex fabrics, "Cozy Winter" by Cherry Guidry, for my pillow and quilt. 

The pillow I made in 2012 went to the Monkey Boys and family. 
There were only four little Monkeys sleeping on the pillow back then!

The Monkey Boys became five in 2016.


There's a Monkey Girl now...time for a new picture!

You can find the PDF downloadable pattern in my Etsy store HERE.

Ready for more Christmas sweets, treats, and inspiration?
Check out these incredible bloggers!

December 5

Wait! There's more...a GIVEAWAY!

I have a sweet bundle of fat quarters for a giveaway.
Benartex "Cozy Winter" by Cherry Guidry.

One winner will be randomly chosen.
USA mailing addresses only.
Leave one short or long and sweet comment.
Giveaway ends December 11, 2022, midnight MST.

You can find the Virtual Christmas Cookie Exchange Pinterest page HERE.

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Good morning Carol. What a lot of temptation in one blog post. These are great ideas for holiday treats, and none of them is requiring too much ambition to make. Thanks a bunch! This is the beginning of a wonderful season and another fun hop.

  2. Carol, all of your cookies look so yummy! Good thing this is virtual, I would be tempted to try them, but alas I cannot due to a gluten sensitivity I developed over 5 years ago. Oh well, such is life. Your new Christmas quilt is beautiful!!! Love it! Thanks for doing this blog hop. Merry Merry.

  3. Oh my goodness...where to start! All those delicious treats, those sweet little Monkey boy faces, the holiday pillow and a delightful holiday quilt. You really are the queen of the Virtual Christmas Cookie Exchange. Now I have to go back and see just how many years, I have played along! Merry Christmas my friend!

  4. All of your cookies look delicious. Thanks so much for the links to the pillow, and quilt. Your grandchildren are adorable. Thanks so much for this great blog hop, it is my favorite of the year. This is my fifth year. Thanks for all you do!

  5. As usual, your post is filled with goodies. What a great way to use up older candy in your Prancer treats. Thanks for hosting all these wonderful hops - even my waistline thanks you. :)

  6. So many goodies! Thank you so much for sharing! Love the bench pillow and Home for the Holidays quilt! :)

  7. I think it's fun that you were so excited about the blog hop that you jumped in and posted on day one. Now you can chuckle at me... I never knew this virtual cookie exchange hop had more in it than cookie recipes! So I've never looked at it! I'm not sure why I did today, but color me festive feeling now.

  8. Wow, that's a whole lot of Christmas fun. Those Ritzy Chocolate Mint Cookies sure do look yummy.. Thank you!

  9. Love all the recipes! I have made those ritz cracker ones before and they are so good! I love all the amazing quilty Christmas projects. Thanks for all the amazing blog hops this year. I look forward to next year!

  10. Those sweets sound ever so good. I love seeing the growing monkey family on the pillow. YES, an updated photo is necessary.

  11. What a fun post to kick off the Hop! And oh, those recipes - I wouldn't be able to keep my mitts off that Prancer food - yum! And such cute quilts and grandkiddos!

  12. Hi Carol! What a fun post and a wonderful way to kick off the VCCE for 2022. Prancer's treats look Yummy and oh so easy to make. And those Monkey Boys . . . look at that baby!! It is definitely time for an updated photo with sweet Monkey Girl surrounded by all those big brothers who adore her. Happy happy holidays, Carol. I hope it is filled with family and friends and loads of blessings. {{Hugs}} ~smile~ Roseanne

  13. Anything with cheesecake in the title gets my loyalty! How nice that you got to meet Jililly and I like the new pillow, though the old one has those charming boys on it! Thanks for the chance to win the fabrics. Benartex has long been a favorite of mine. Remember when we used to get pins?

  14. OMG, you are killing me with these treats. I think I need every one of them. You have to take a new picture when you get those monkeys home for the holidays. The new pillow is ready and so cute! Look at that awesome Home For the Holidays quilt. I love your take on it. A car pulling the trailer is clever, and a convertible at that! So cute! Your designs never disappoint. Merry Christmas!

  15. Sweet, sweet, sweet...that's gotta be short. :) Loved the 6 monkey-grands on the pillow; I wondered how you make them all are just so creative.

  16. Your treats look fabulous! I remember that pillow! It's wonderful to see how the family has grown over time. Your Home for Christmas quilt is so fun and cheery!

  17. Oh Carol everything you make looks so, so good! I want to make that mix for sure. Your monkeys are adorable, love the photos, and your Home for the Holidays quilt is beautiful. I need to make one of those pillows! Wonderful post, and thank you for hosting this fun, calorie-filled event. :D

  18. I foolishly over-indulged last month and am sugar-free for December...but I'm enjoying the blog hop just the same. Thank you!

  19. I have got to try the Chocolate chip mint cookies ; they look so delicious and sound very easy. How cute to see all of sweet monkeys in the photos. It is fun to see how the kiddos grow and change over the years.

  20. WOW! I seriously need to try those chocolate chip mint cookies! Wonderful projects and great photos of the monkeys!

  21. Love the snack mix and your quilt! Sweet!! Nice trip down memory lane too, with what you've made and with the Monkey Kids. :) I enjoyed it all. Thanks for another great hop!

  22. Love you family photos. What are you using to hang your quilt for photos? It looks like something I could use, normally I hang quilts on the house gutter but its not portable.

  23. Oh my goodness! All of those goodies look wonderful! I think the Chocolate Cheesecake Bars would be my favorite, but I love the Chex Mix recipe too! I love the Home for the Holidays quilt! I know you wish all the Monkey Babies could be home with you for Christmas...or maybe you're visiting them!!

  24. Wow! The treats look so yummy! And I LOVE the pillow. Thanks for the link.

  25. Prancer's Favorite Christmas Treat mix looks so yummy! I'm sure he and all his reindeer friend would love it too. I just love the movie Prancer and watch it every time it comes on!

  26. Thank you for the pillow link, I downloaded it for next year to many things in the frying pan right now. The Chex Mix sounds delicious going to have to try it.

  27. I love the pillow, hope to get one done next year!! Thanks for the pattern!

  28. All of the treats look delicious!
    The pics of kids are too cute also.

  29. Your mix looks delicious! And those cheesecake bars, YUM! Love the pillow too.

  30. All your goodies look delicious! Can't wait to try them. I love your quilt. The colors are so bright and festive. Make me want to go on a road trip. Thank you, too, for the pillow pattern link. I must make one of those!

  31. What a great win for Karrin! Great hop!


Comments are always appreciated!

Something Smells Fishy

It's Day One of "Something Smells Fishy". I'm ready to see what my incredible friends make to meet the challenge! The chal...