A Little Homemade Christmas

December 10, 2006

My daughter does not remember a Christmas without this nativity at my mom’s house. We were trying to place an age on it and guess it was made around 1980. It definitely was back in the day when I was a stay at home mom and had time to craft.

It is made from salt and flour dough, baked, painted and then varnished. Mary, Joseph and the baby Jesus, along with the angel were made the first year. My neighbor made the creche out of spare lumber, and then came the star.

The wise guys came on foot; the next Christmas they brought their camel along with the shepherds and other critters.

The donkey might bear a slight resemblance to Eeyore, however unintentional.

My mom always kept all of her Christmas ornaments and decorations in boxes in the fruit cellar, but we found this in the original box in the hall closet. For awhile she kept it out all year round.

This is the first Christmas for my daughter and her husband in their new home. So, today I am boxing this up for her. It will fit perfectly on her mantel. From my mother to my daughter just feels so right. Merry Christmas Sarah!


17 Responses to “A Little Homemade Christmas”

  1. sarahviola Says:

    I think I remember watching you paint these at the kitchen table!

    Where are the gifts of frankincense myrrh? Those were my favorite to play with when I was little.

  2. gawilli Says:

    There is a funny story with the frankincense and myrrh (and gold,too). I made the first few pieces and gifted them, then the next year I could not remember whether or not the wise guys had their gifts or not. I could not ask or my mom would know what I was up to, so I made individual little pieces the next year; come to find out they were attached to the hands of the wise guys already! They are wrapped up in your box along with the rest of the pieces…ready to go home with you.

  3. Anonymous Says:

    Happy Birthday and you are very talented.

  4. Ginnie Says:

    I love it when things are passed down through the generations…and the creche scene is wonderful! I love your use of color.

  5. Anonymous Says:

    Homemade Christmas decorations are the best kind. When my sister and I were little we made a whole bunch of ornaments with mom, painted them and hung them on the tree. All three of us still have most of those ornaments and they are still on our trees.

    And Happy Birthday!

  6. debi Says:

    Well Happy Birthday to you!( I would sing you the Beatles version if I could) I love your nativity and the story that goes along with. I have always wanted to make those salt decorations and never have.Your painting is especially good. Thank you for sharing such goodies.

  7. Anonymous Says:

    Beautiful! How sweet to give them to your daughter. What a wonderful gift.

  8. mjd Says:

    This may be the best creche ever.

  9. graymama Says:


    Your craftsmanship is AMAZING! What a wonderful gift to give your daughter. Could you teach my mother how to be more thoughtful?! 😛

  10. Anonymous Says:

    happy birthday and i think that nativity is one of the best

  11. Frema Says:

    Happy birthday, Jean!

  12. Tink Says:

    Those are amazing! Nothing is more precious then handmade Christmas decorations. My two favorite ornaments are the ones my Mom and I painted when I was little. No matter how chipped or worn the paint has gotten… No matter how many fancy decorations I accumulate over the years. Those two mean the most.

    Oh and HAPPY BIRTHDAY! My Mom’s is tomorrow.

  13. gawilli Says:

    Thanks everyone for the birthday wishes. It was a wonderful day! The only thing better would be to have a day like that…and not have to add a year on to my age!

  14. susan Says:

    This is just beautiful and what a wonderful gift to give your daughter.

    Happy Birthday! I didn’t realize you shared the day with Mimi. 🙂

  15. daddy d Says:

    It is so good to pass long family things. The giving of the nativity is special.

  16. Anonymous Says:

    I LOVE your nativity scene. You are so talented!

    We have a tradition of buying items for our tree whenever we travel around the world. They don’t have to be Christmas related, just something to jog our holiday memories when we hang them each year.

  17. […] My favorite Christmas decoration is my nativity. My mom made it back when she was a hippie, and now it’s mine. I love […]

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