As you may know, we recently uncovered a fireplace opening in our new home. The Christmas perfectionist in me wanted it stocking-ready by December, but my husband has been too busy to build the mantel. I've been trying not to pout about that gaping hole. How often I've bitten my tongue to keep from nagging! We had hoped to buy an electric fireplace insert as our gift to each other, but we're using that money for a replacement computer instead.
I unpacked our Christmas decorations this week. The creche, like its figural inhabitants, had trouble finding a place to rest. Should I go buy something bigger, a set with more presence? Suddenly I remembered--my favorite Tasha Tudor had a creche in her kitchen fireplace! My mom and I quickly settled the wooden manger in my fireplace opening. We elevated it on an orange crate and disguised its base with Georgia pinecones. A small nightlight fit just behind. We added tree trimmings from Lowe's (the man told us to fill up our car, go home, and come back for another load!). From my husband's family farm I gathered Spanish moss, like silvery hay in the manger.
It's so funny the way things work when you have more patience than money! Looking down at the Holy Family is as peaceful as watching a fire burn; anticipation of His birth, even warmer. I love these lessons of Christmas. God takes something rough and unfinished--a space, a family, a soul--and reclaims it by the gift of his only begotten son. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world. --John 9:5