Saturday, December 3, 2011

Domesticity: Nativity Set

My very favorite Christmas decoration is my nativity set.  I got it as a Christmas gift one year (I think 2008 but I'm not sure), and I absolutely love it.  It's made of hand-carved olive wood from Israel, and I think it is perfection as far as nativity displays go.

The whole set 

Closeup of the Holy Family.

What I think is neat about this set is that it came direct from Israel, wrapped in newspapers in (gasp!) Hebrew.  I probably should wrap the pieces in moving paper or something without the newsprint on them, but I felt compelled to save this paper to remind me of the origin of this beautiful set that I treasure so much.

One of my favorite things about this set is the deliberate obscurity of the figures.  There are no facial details, and few things to give you a pre-conceived notion of what Mary, Joseph, the Magi, the Shepherd (I only got one with this set), and the Christ Child looked like.  I like that specifically because it allows room for imagination and speculation.  Because we can never know what they looked like, except in our hearts.

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