It all started our first year of marriage when Hubby wistfully remarked that he would someday like to have a little Christmas village display of his own. We were browsing a huge department store at the time and they had a gorgeous, sprawling village set up at the front of their Christmas section. So that year I bought the only thing our modest budget could afford. A blanket of "snow" that our future village would sit on.
The next year my sister gave us a beautiful miniature toy shop, complete with gorgeous detail and a back lit window display of toys and cute teddy bears careening in glee down a slide attached to the shop.
The year after that I bought a pair of battery operated mini street lanterns at Goodwill and would spend long trips gazing at the little villages they had for sale, but knew I couldn't buy them that year. One day, a few weeks before Christmas, I went back to look at the villages again and the Goodwill ladies called me aside. One of them said "You shop here a lot and are always so sweet to us. You never throw a fit if we can't find what you want and always have something nice to say. We've seen you looking at the Christmas villages for a few weeks and a few of us decided we wanted to give you these. Merry Christmas, hon."
She reached behind the counter and pulled out a plastic bag with some mysterious bundles in it. The newspaper wrapping on the items couldn't disguise the fact that they clinked a little as I took the bag from her. I said, "No way...", as I unwrapped the nearest bundle. The three of them watched me smilingly, and I nearly broke into tears when I saw that I held a beautiful little country church with a light dusting of snow. It was part of a light up set. I followed the wires connecting the bundles and found that the bag held two more adorable light up buildings: a bakery and a house. They all looked so wintery and Christmas cozy and well... just perfect. After telling them I loved the gifts but couldn't accept them, and being lovingly threatened by the sweet ladies, I hugged them all and left with a full bag and an even fuller heart.
That same year, I was surprised with some Christmas money from some wonderful relatives and decided to make use of a coupon and sale going on at JoAnn's crafts. I was tickled pink to find an amazing deal on a large light up church and some people and trees to populate our village with!
So that's our Christmas village story. The buildings are mismatched and out of scale, and while we'd like to add to them, I would never get rid of any of the misfit originals. I think they're beautiful. And this year it's even more special because we get to see it through Baby Boy's eyes. The wonder and curiosity behind his gaze as he scrutinizes the little village and it's populace adds to the Christmas feeling in our little home.
In order of acquisition:
|Bigger church. What village only has one church, right?|
|A few of our villagers relaxing after some toy shopping :)|
And here it is in all it's shining glory.