Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Christmas Countdown Characters #21

Because  there are only 25 days in Advent and there are 26 letters in the alphabet, today we have a  daily double - U and V

U is for Ulla  

 Ulla  is a Finnish name , made popular by the Swedish secretary in the stage play, "The Producers" , but today I have two different Christmas celebrities who are named  " Ulla" .  

Little Ulla is the  fictional heroine of an interactive Christmas Stage Show specially created for little ones, with puppets, music, and yodelling! It’s a busy little time for Little Ulla the Post Goat!  It’s Christmas time and she has lots of cards to deliver around the village.  Every day she makes people happy by delivering cards from friends and loved ones. But poor old Mr Hans the clockmaker never gets any Christmas cards!  Needless to say, Little Ulla makes sure that Mr Hans is not neglected this Christmas.  

The discovery of this rather odd Scottish operetta and its caprine heroine does not diminish the brilliance of  my artist friend, Ulla Anobile who is not fictional, but a real living Christmas celebrity. Ulla is a Finnish-American, who creates   the most whimsical nativity scenes, and other  delightful Christmas characters from felt with hand embroidery.  

You might have remembered " tonttu" from yeseterday's post.... Ulla's Christmas elves  each has his own personality defined by the hand embroidered features. Most of Ulla's work refers to her Finnish heritage and is unique - every felt character is a work of original art.  Ulla's work can often be seen and purchased from Cactus Gallery in Elysian Valley, Los Angeles.  

You can find Ulla  and her  brilliant work on her Facebook page.  
Hyvää Joulua, Ulla!

V is for Virginia 
Most may not recognise the name " Virginia O'Hanlon" but if I mention the letter and the classic response which began , " Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus".   I am sure it will ring a bell, a Christmas one even! Eight year old  New Yorker Virginia questioned the existence of Santa Claus, and the now famous reply appeared as an editorial in The Sun in 1897  
Virginia enjoyed a career as a teacher and later as a school principal but throughout her life, she continued to receive correspondence about her letter . Virginia died in 1971 and her family recall that Virginia never ever thought she did anything special, she felt all she did was ask a question, and it was the editor Francis Church who wrote the remarkable response who should be receiving the glory. 

Ulla, Little Ulla and Virginia all have in common the love of spreading joy in the world.... what a lesson we can all learn from them this festive season. 

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