Welcome back to my kitchen! And, let me be one of the first to wish you a very Merry Christmas! Christmas is a day of meaning and traditions. For me, Christmas is fearing not. “I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in the manager.”

Christmas is about God’s goodness, despite our utter and constant failure.

I’ve never told you, a few things. Even though I feel now like an open book.

First. I met The Hubs online. Of course, we took heat (a lot of it actually) from the bitter naysayer types. How could you truly meet someone online? Both of you, must be desperate. What a bunch of fools they are. I have no doubt. Our meeting is apart of God’s plan. You see, The Hubs found me online. Under the screenname, Finlander. He wrote to me and I politely responded back—and back—and back. Well, the rest is history. We are opposites in a lot of ways. Also, strikingly similar. Em still thinks she’ll see her parents someday on an online dating television commercial.

Second. I’m a Minnesotan through and through. Part Swedish and a whole lotta Finnish. You can’t guess it looking at me right? I’ve actually been approached by complete strangers asking if I’m Finnish. Christmas is an ancient celebration and an especially important time of the year for Finns. Did you know Finns love to build gingerbread houses? It’s all genetic I swear!

Christmas Words in Finnish:
Joulu—Christmas
Lumi—-Snow
Seppele—Wreath
Poro—Reindeer
Joulupukki—Santa Claus

Third. True confession. In 4th grade, I was a Campfire Girl. Remember them? My first ever published recipe was from 4th grade. Well, sort of. My mom sent in a recipe for Finnish Tarts to the national Campfire Girl cookbook and guess who got published?

Fourth. I don’t hide it. I’m a believer. My faith is the vital of my being. My root core. I don’t preach. I don’t bully others into what I believe or force religion on anyone. For me, faith isn’t about the light that scatters all our darkness but a light that guides our steps in the right path. My faith assures me that no matter what lies ahead of me, God is already there.

Faith makes things possible. Hope makes things work. Love makes things beautiful. Wishing you a lighted sparkle and a very Merry Christmas from this Faithful Finlander to all of you.

No Sugar Baker’s Finnish Pinwheel Christmas Tarts

Ingredients:

3 C. Flour
1 C. Swerve Granular
2 t. Baking Powder
1 t. Salt
1 C. Cold Butter, Chopped
1 Beaten Egg
3 T. Heavy Whipping Cream
1 T. Vanilla
Swerve Confections to Sprinkle
No Sugar Raspberry Jam

Easy Directions:

In large mixing bowl, sift together flour, Swerve Granular, baking powder, and salt. Cut in butter, like you would with a pie crust. When blended, mix in egg, cream and vanilla. Form into 2 large balls. On a floured surface, roll out each ball into 1/8 inch thickness and cut into 2 inch size squares. Place each square onto parchment lined baking sheet. With a sharp knife, make small diagonal slits in each of the square’s corners. Place ½ t. of jam in the center of each cookie. Make the cookie into the shape of a pinwheel by bringing up every other corner to the center of the cookie—skipping every other corner. Press lightly. Bake at 325 for 13 minutes. Let cool and sprinkle with Swerve Confections.

Hyvaa Joulua!!Onnellista uttta voutta! Naut lomasta!

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