The Story Behind the Blessing Baskets
Years ago, Penelope and her daughters found themselves helping a young woman who struggled with some deep trauma issues. As Christmas drew near, they discovered that all of her Christmas memories were horrific, filled with abuse and cruelty.
Well, they loved to celebrate Christmas and determined an intervention was in order. After mulling over different ideas, the three of them finally decided to give her one gift for each day of December through Christmas. Since they didn’t have much money, they went through drawers, closets, and cupboards to see what might work for a little gift. (They really didn’t have much money!)
Then they wrapped all twenty-five gifts. Penelope found a basket tucked away in a closet, and they delivered it to their young friend.
And that was the beginning of the Christmas Blessing Baskets. Each year, they pondered and prayed over who would be the recipient of a basket. Sometimes it was obvious. For instance, one day, a friend said, “I hate Christmas!” And she meant it! The three of them looked at each other and knew instantly who was getting a basket. Another year Penelope didn’t have a name until November 30th. Nothing like last minute.
Eventually, she developed a set of criteria:
Some of the women she knew quite well, some not so well, and some not at all. And the number of baskets delivered also varied—anywhere from one to five.
She and her daughters always enjoyed the surprised expressions when the women received their baskets as well as the comments during the month. Below are what two of the recipients had to say:
Thank you for blessing me with the 25 days of gifts! December is a difficult time of year. I lost my husband on December 12th, two days before my birthday. What you’ve done for me is a God thing. Love, C
The best Christmas I ever had was when I received a Christmas basket from Penelope. She had put a lot of care and thought into it. Christmases were not fun for me, and I had recently come out of an abusive relationship. That December, each day was a loving message that warmed my heart with such thoughtful things. By the time Christmas came, I was ready to celebrate it. Thanks to these gifts, I love Christmas! It’s truly a gift that keeps giving and giving. Can’t wait for another Christmas Blessing Basket. One for myself and others. Merry Christmas! D
One more story—Penelope felt led to give a basket to the adult daughter of a dear friend. She had watched the child grow up, and then, sadly move into an unhealthy lifestyle and marriage. Her mother later told Penelope that the basket was a turning point in her daughter’s life. A Christmas Blessing Basket holds the potential to have a life-long impact.
And now, Penelope wants to offer you the opportunity to bless someone and expand the Blessing Baskets to include more than Christmas! Below is a list of the various baskets available for purchase:
Snack Basket: Includes 8–10 various popular snacks
Coffee Basket: Includes 8–10 items for coffee lovers
Tea Basket: Includes 8–10 favorites for tea drinkers
Relaxation Basket: Includes 8–10 soothing and relaxing items
Faith Basket: Includes 8-10 items to encourage a faith walk
Miscellaneous Basket: Includes a variety of items designed to bring smiles
Christmas Basket: Includes 25 individually wrapped gifts to open from December 1-25
Hanukkah Basket: Includes 8 individually wrapped gifts to open during the eight days of Hanukkah
Not sure when to give a basket? The following list has a few ideas:
and Just Because
Below are the specifics for ordering your own Blessing Basket:
Cost: All baskets except Christmas: $25.00
Christmas Blessing Basket: $50.00
Customized baskets may be available. Contact Penelope for more information.
Deadline: If you want your basket delivered by a certain date, please allow for a minimum of two weeks delivery time. For Christmas Blessing Baskets, orders must be paid for and received by November 17, 2021 for guaranteed delivery by December 1st.
For Hanukkah Baskets, orders must be paid for and received by November 15, 2021 for guaranteed delivery by November 29, 2021.
Local Delivery: Free—Contact Penelope to make delivery arrangements.
Out of area: $15.00 flat rate anywhere in the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii for all baskets except Christmas.
Out of area for Christmas Blessing Basket: $20.00 flat rate anywhere in the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii.
*If Penelope has to ship it, the gifts will be sent in a box due to the exorbitant cost. However, each box will be wrapped on the inside with Christmas/festive wrapping paper. Upon delivery, you can place the gifts in an inexpensive basket found at a local dollar store, a vintage one at an antique shop, or a unique one at a craft store. You might also have one in your closet you can re-purpose. If the basket/box is sent to the recipient, offer those suggestions as well. However, if you do want her to include a basket, please contact her to discuss the logistics and shipping.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can Penelope include the basket?
Yes, she includes the basket for all local deliveries. You will need to contact her to discuss the logistics and shipping to include baskets sent out of the area.
If Penelope ships the basket, does she add some type of explanation about it?
Yes, Penelope includes a personalized card or note stating the basket comes from you.
Can I order more than one basket and have them shipped to different addresses?
Yes, you can! In the Message section on the contact form, add each name and address. Penelope will send a confirmation email to make sure the names/addresses are correct before sending the baskets.
If I order more than one basket, can I get a discount on shipping?
In order to receive a discount, all the baskets must be sent to one address without the basket. (That sounds a bit weird—a basket without a basket??) Penelope will then determine how much of a discount, if any, she can offer. It will depend on a number of things, including the sizes of the wrapped gifts, the total weight, i.e. You will need to contact her to discuss the specifics.
What is the difference between baskets that are shipped and those delivered locally?
Baskets that are shipped cannot include anything on the Post Office’s list of items not allowed for shipping. These include perfume, hand sanitizer, etc.
How do the Blessing Baskets work?
Each basket comes with pre-wrapped gifts. The recipient can unwrap them all at once or one day at a time.
The Christmas and Hanukkah Blessing Baskets come with pre-wrapped gifts, numbered 1–25, to begin opening on the 1st of December or 1–8 to begin opening on the first day of Hanukkah. A variety of gifts include: some holiday style, some not; some practical, some for decoration. A fun gift is always included as well as a special one for the last day. A postcard explains the rules. Yes, the Christmas Blessing Basket has rules:
Since your preferences are hidden from me, you might unwrap
something you don’t like, isn’t you, or doesn’t fit.
If that happens, pass the gift on to someone else
And keep the blessing going.
A final note: Penelope takes great delight in purchasing and wrapping each gift. It is her deepest desire that you and the recipient of your Blessing Basket overflow with joy. If you have any other questions or comments about the Blessing Baskets, please contact Penelope here.