When my girls were babies, my Grandmother sent me a small amount of cash to buy each of my girls a Christmas gift. They had plenty of toys, books and clothes so I decided to buy them some type of keepsake. After looking at what collectibles were available for very little money, I decided to start each of them a Fontanini Nativity Set. That first year I bought each of them Mary, Joseph and Jesus and the following year I bought them each the manager.
Each year I bought a new piece to add to their Nativity.
My grandmother passed away about six years after I started the set but I continued to add new pieces each year. Animals and Angels, Shepherds and Wisemen all joined the scene.
Children playing instruments....
And women bearing gifts for the newborn babe.
The Nativity grew and grew and today they each have well over forty pieces.
The Baby Jesus never appears in the manger until Christmas Morning and the Wisemen are set aside and slowly make their way, finally ending up in front of the Manger on January 6th, the Epiphany. Because every piece is unbreakable, my girls have always been allowed to "play" with their set, reenacting the Holy Birth and talking about the real importance of Christmas.
I also have another Nativity. When my Grandmother passed away the only thing I wanted was the Nativity set that belonged to my Grandparents. I never actually thought I would get it because there were other children and grandchildren whom I thought would surely end up with it. But I did end up with it. I have no clue how old it is but my Grandparents always displayed this as far back as I can remember, so I know it was manufactured in the early sixties at the very least.
The Baby Jesus has suffered serious abuse and is unrecognizable, it looks as if a dog chewed on it but my Grandparents never owned a pet.
I also thought there were more pieces, Angels etc. but I don't know whatever happened to them. I would like to see if I can find more pieces on ebay to add to my set because eventually, my girls will leave home and take their Nativities with them.
I'm linking this post to Alphabe Thursday for the Letter N at Jenny Matlocks.