Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Nativity Scene

Aidan and I went to the thrift store together so I could drop off a donation.  And there they were.  Four figures from a Nativity set.  There was a kneeling Shepherd, a Wiseman seated on a camel, another kneeling Wiseman, and what was probably the St. Joseph figure.  I knew what was coming next.

"Mama, aren't they beautiful?  But oh look how expensive they are - this one is $50."

"Hmmm, Aidan, I think that says $.50, see the cents sign?"

"Wow, that's a bargain, can I get them Mama"?

I only wish you could have heard the inflection in his voice and seen the sincere thrill in his eyes upon finding this find of all finds.  I knew they were slightly larger than our set - but the coloring was similar. 

"OK, Aidan, Do you have $2"?


They were placed on the counter, carefully wrapped and brought home.  Now of course we needed to get our own set down from the attic.

The "stable" and empty manger are set up with only the cow.

The Shepherds tend their sheep in a grassy field.

Mary, Joseph, and the donkey rest by the Advent wreath until they begin to visit each room in the house before coming to the stable on Christmas Eve.

And now we have five Wisemen.  They have started to make their way over the sands and sea from far off places.  Now of course there is the story about the "Other Wise Man", also known as the fourth Wise Man.  Aidan and I are writing the tale of the Fifth Wise man.
And the Baby?  Well he is hidden away.  Every year, before the children open Christmas presents they look for Baby Jesus hidden somewhere on the Christmas tree.  All these years I have precariously placed him on a branch.  This year I made a sun burst felt pocket that can hold him and be hung more easily on the tree. 

Now, before Papa came home that evening the children and I made a friendly bet.  Would Papa notice two extra Wisemen, especially one sitting on an extra large camel?  Or that instead of only one Shepherd, now there were three?  All of us, except Katie, were sure Papa wouldn't notice. 

When Papa came home that night Katie pointed out, "We set up the Creche today, Daddy".   He looked around and commented on how nice everything looked.

"The Shepherds are over here," encouraged Katie.

"Mmhmm, very nice" smiled Papa.  By now suppressed giggles were beginning to escape.

"Look at the Wisemen over here, Papa," hinted Katie. 

"Yes, I see," said Papa.  More and more giggles. 

"What?" asked a very puzzled Papa.

"You didn't notice that there were FIVE Wisemen???"

And a family story is born...one that I am sure will be recounted each year!

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