Last year we displayed the outdoor Nativity scene on the front porch, but it just looked a bit too cramped and didn’t do it justice. So this year we put it in the front yard. Here are a few details we had to change…
We’ve had these nativity people for several years, probably 10 years or so. I spotted them at Sam’s Club, (not at all a usual shopping stop for me) but they were so pretty and such a good price, I’m so glad I bought them then. And we’ve had them displayed a few different ways over the years.
At our former house in the country, we had built a nativity shed from poplar logs, but that eventually rotted out, so when we moved to our new 100 year old house last year, we started fresh with a nativity shed, this time using pallet wood, (no more free poplar logs like in the country).
After setting up the nativity scene on the DIY pallet wood nativity shed, which we set up on a pallet in the yard for a little lift, and hopefully to keep it from getting too much snow and ice holding it into the yard, (although the little bit of snow pictured in these pictures I took a couple weeks ago, has now melted… I’m writing this post a little ahead of time, so let’s hope we get some white stuff before Christmas!)
But, once we set it up, and dusk came… there was a problem we noticed, the nativity scene was sitting in the dark. I then remembered, back at our former house, we had a different shed with a roof, which we mounted a light on. And last year up on our front porch we used the porch ceiling to hang a light from. Hmmm… out here in the front yard, there isn’t anything really to hang or mount a light to.
So that is how it sat, in the dark at night, for a few days while I put on my thinking cap.
I considered twinkle lights laid on the floor of the nativity shed, or across the top, but decided it wouldn’t be enough light to really light it up much, and just wasn’t the look I wanted. I really wanted the light, a spotlight to be exact, to come from in front of it. Then it came to me. I’d just use a temporary low fence to mount a spotlight on.
After a little searching on different sites for fencing, this wooden log fence was absolutely the right thing… it matched the rustic wood of the nativity and was low enough to not block the view, and with stakes on the bottom of the posts for temporary installation, could easily be installed and taken out after Christmas. **There are links for this fence at the end of this post.**
This spotlight mounted to the top rail of the center fence with a couple of screws, and the spotlight is on a timer so that it turns on and off without me having to remember to do it.
At night, the front porch has the dimly lit hanging lanterns and deer themed tree, but the nativity is lit much bolder, making it the central focus for our front yard, silently celebrating with us as we recall the story of the historical event and ponder convicting thoughts of what that first noel was all about and how it impacts our lives now.
Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that a census be taken of all the inhabited earth. 2 This was the first census taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And everyone was on his way to register for the census, each to his own city. 4 Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, 5 in order to register along with Mary, who was engaged to him, and was with child. 6 While they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
8 In the same region there were some shepherds staying out in the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; 11 for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.”
15 When the angels had gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds began saying to one another, “Let us go straight to Bethlehem then, and see this thing that has happened which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 So they came in a hurry and found their way to Mary and Joseph, and the baby as He lay in the manger.
Merry Christmas everyone!
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