Welcome to another edition of Photo Friday! If you stopped by Wednesday’s 10 on 10 Photography Circle post, you saw some of our Christmas decorations. Our tree is up, and there are lights in the yard, but we have a few more things to do before we can call everything good. Mainly because my Sweet Husband feels like Christmas decorations are a competition, and since apparently just about everyone on the block decorates for Christmas, we have to do it better than have – one-up them so to speak. I, of course, encourage this because one of my favorite things in the world is looking at Christmas lights. So calming and soothing. It kinds feels like our world could use a bit of calm and soothing right now.
While SH handles the outside of the house, I take on the responsibility of the inside of the house. We’ve combined households pretty well, I think, particularly as it relates to our Christmas decorations. Partially because SH just brings lights and ornaments to the game. I have a few precious, very old decorations that meant the world to me that I set out every Christmas. One of the things I’m loving about this new house is that there is room for those decorations that were once my grandparents’.
Santa here is fairly filthy. I’d call it the years and years of use that has created his particular patina. I’ve tried to clean him up a bit over the years but it’s a balance between removing the grime and removing the paint. He’s fairly delicate, so I wipe him off and then put him out in a prominent place. I don’t know how old he is, but I remember him from my childhood so I’m going to hazard a guess that he’s at least 40 – if not older. I think perhaps he is entitled to a bit of grit – after all, Santa has a tough job. I’m sure it has to wear on him.
Of course, next to Santa stands my three caroling angels. They have their own oddity – which is a hole in their heads. The hole is the perfect shape and size for a taper candle, but I’ve never actually put a candle on them. It just seems weird to me, but maybe this is the year.
These ladies too are beginning to show their age. They, like Santa, are memories of my childhood. I remember these sitting on the mantle at my grandparents’ house, the three of them clustered together, ready to break into song.
(see? Candle holder on her head. Just weird)
The last caroler shares space with an angel. She looks like she might belong as part of the set, but her little candle holder head isn’t quite right…probably because her head tilts back. She too is a tad bit dirty – perhaps just a bit of fallen angel in her.
When my grandparents became wards of the state because they could no longer pay their bills (it’s a long story but it boils down to my brother took advantage of them and threatened them and they felt like they had no option but to give in to him…and they were much better off as wards of the state. Safer, more secure), all of their belongings were auctioned off by the state to pay for their care. I didn’t know what was happening because I was far away and no one bothered to tell me until it was almost too late. My grandmother’s sister managed to save a few things for me, including a few quilts (one is on the bed in our spare room), some china that Grandma painted by hand, and these decorations.
Perhaps most special of them all is the nativity set that Grandma painted all those years ago. It’s a large nativity set, and it’s slightly amazing to me that it has survived all of my moves relatively intact, although it get more fragile every year. The donkey has lost an ear; the angel is missing the tip of one of her wings. The manger is beginning to chip and I worry each year when I put it away what I will find when I open those boxes again…almost as if during the course of a year it could disintegrate.
Mary’s robe is looking a little worse for the wear, but I suppose, given the context of the story, that’s OK. I think it would have been a difficult time for her – her robe might have been a little threadbare.
I’m slightly ashamed to admit that each year I’m never quite sure where all the players in the nativity go. I can tell who the wisemen are because they have crowns and come bearing gifts. I always get a little confused about where which ones are the shepherds and which one is Joseph. I frequently guess, hoping I’ve gotten it right (because I can’t remember from year to year), and pray that if I’ve gotten it wrong, Joseph understands being on the outside looking in while another man takes his place. And the animals – geeze the animals. Clearly the camel goes outside the manager and adjoining stable because he’s just too big. But what about the donkey? And the cow? And the sheep? Who goes where?
(These are things that give me a bit a stress as I’m decorating for Christmas. SH is a wise man himself and just adds a tot more bourbon and rum to my egg nog and everything is instantly better)
I’ve still got a few things to do in the house – the other nativities that I need to set up are patiently waiting their turn (I collect nativities – there’s something about them) and the stockings still need to be hung…a couple of stockings still need to be found, but as the holiday inches closer, we are almost ready for it.
How is your decorating going? Are you done? Are any of your decorations family treasures, passed down through generations? I’d love to take a peek!
Photo Friday Link-Up
Welcome to another edition of the Photo Friday link-up! I’m so excited that you are here, and I can’t wait to see what all you have for us this week! I apologize for not getting around to all of last week’s posts – with the holiday season in full swing, there has been a lot going on. This is also one of my busy seasons at work, which means that I’ve been a little overwhelmed there too. Hopefully this week I will be able to get caught up with y’all! I hate that I missed that goodness that you shared with us last week.
Speaking of last week – we had a three way tie for the most-viewed links! Y’all loved Linda from Paper Seedling’s flower, Kelly from Swimming in Sunshine’s discovery of Shangri La, and Ruth Daly’s sharing of Aphrodite’s Rock.
Our last added link came from Sara at Love That Image. If you missed her posts, make sure you go check her – and those who entered their links later in the weekend – out!
I hope y’all have had a lovely week and have lots of fun planned as we creep closer to the holidays. I know that we do and I’ll be photographing it to share with you!
As always, thank you for your support of each other and for sharing each other’s posts! Can’t wait to see what you have for us this week!