I’m such a thing person sometimes, I have the hardest time throwing things out. So to write about things I treasure should have been easy. Not.
It’s Christmastime. The time when gifts are exchanged, etc. What did I ask for? A giant sized bottle of Dawn for dishes and the giant PineSol LOL. I’ve asked for these kinds of things for years as I’ve never been into the “gifts” part of things – ever. Things I treasure most aren’t really things, they’re more like traditions, experiences, familia, friends.
All that, and the Ranch Nacimiento/Nativity, Mama’s smaller house nacimiento, working with our Ranch kids for the annual Christmas play, eating tamales and more.
The Ranch Nacimiento, especially, is priceless and unique. There are people, animals, baby Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, little burros, people carrying wood and animals on their backs like they did back in the day. And in this year’s pilgrimage on the Nacimiento, another King was seen walking to see baby Jesus…and there he was, Elvis! My grandma Mama Lupita collected the majority of the pieces herself and brought them back from her many trips to Mexico — most times, she was travelling by bus and I’m still amazed at how many figurines she had amassed, and how many of them made the trips intact.
However, my absolute favorites are those pieces that Grandma would try to “fix” when they would break. There was that one little lamb whose leg had broken off which was then “fixed” by putting on an Elmer’s glue orange cap in place of the leg LOL. Here’s the one gentleman whose legs had broken off. Grandma gave him a new lease on life by placing him into a NyQuil cap LOL so now he could at least stand up even if he couldn’t walk.
When I first moved out, Mama had put a bunch of family “heirlooms” into my boxes and, one of the treasures was HER small plastic Nativity scene that I had seen for my entire life each Christmas. My mother loved putting out her nativity scene (or having us put it up for her) every year and it’s the tradition that warms my heart, knowing that I would see the same thing each year. Very comforting to know that a few little beaten-up knickknacks can bring us to smiles (and tears)
My most prized possessions are shared with others: my entire Ranch family loves the Ranch Nacimiento and we love Mama’s Nacimiento at our house every year. These traditions work it for us and I hope that I help keep these family customs alive.
Feliz Navidad All. Below are pictures of just PART of the Ranch Nacimiento. You’ll note that Mama sewed clothes for Mary and Joseph waaay back in the day. This is one amazing display.
Scenes from the Ranch Nativity