A Beheading at My House

A pre-post note to my mom:

Dear Mom,

I am truly, terribly sorry for the incident that happened at my house last night, about which you will soon read. And I promise to do everything in my limited power to fix it... er, uh...them. I promise to fix THEM.

Your Pea-brained, Clumsy Daughter,
Okay, so you know the nativity story, right? The one about the Virgin Mary giving birth to a son named Jesus? And He was our savior, and God's son and all? Okay, well, you remember the guy who was given the earthly job of taking care of Mary, and being Jesus' earthly father, or I guess step-father? Joseph? Remember him?

Well... I decapitated Joseph last night.

I also de-winged an angel.

Took 'em both out at the same time.

I didn't MEAN to knock Joseph's head off. It was just a clutsy mistake. Only this is kind of a BIG mistake, because, see... my grandmother made him. And the angel. And a whole ceramic nativity set. With her hands, and some molds, and a really hot oven.

(FYI, my mother is, right at this very moment, freaking out. She's probably grasping her chest and hyperventilating. And cussing.)

Grammy was my mom's mom, and she was incredibly crafty and talented. She was always making something... ceramic dolls, pillows, clothes, clothes for the dolls, jewelry, and lots of stuff with pictures of cats on it. She loved cats.

And one day she decided to make this ceramic nativity set. And she really went all out and even glued teeny-tiny crystals and pearls on the different pieces. I mean, seriously, these were the prettiest camels I ever saw.
But I think she really had it right; the wise men are thought to have been really wealthy. So it makes sense that they would be decked out in diamonds and pearls, right?

So Grammy went to all this trouble to mold, cook and jewel all these pieces. And the whole set with all the animals, Baby Jesus (who I didn't hurt, thank heavens), Mary, the camels, Joseph, an angel and the wise guys is just gorgeous. (Except maybe for the wise man sitting down front, whose gift looks a wee-bit pornographic to me. But I digress.)

Or it WAS gorgeous, until I took out a couple of the major players. These were the weapons I unintentionally used.

They are candle holders, made of heavy black metal and stained glass. And they were sitting on the table with the nativity. I watered a huge poinsettia that my precious husband brought home to me the other day, which was also sitting on the table. I pushed the plant over just a tad, which in a domino effect then pushed one of the candles into another of the candles, which fell into the nativity. WHAM! CRASH!!!

And in slow motion I yelled, "Oh CRAP!!!" and squished my eyes closed. When I opened my eyes and looked around the plant, there lay Joseph, headless, alongside the tiny angel who had only one wing.

The rest of the set, including the ox and ass, were unharmed. But the damage had been done. And I was crushed. Not as crushed as poor Joseph, mind you, but still crushed. And near tears.

My mom had given me Grammy's nativity as a Christmas gift several years ago, because she knew how much I loved it. And now, Joseph and the angel and all their broken parts lay in a plastic bag, waiting for me to super-glue them back together again. That sentence, as I typed it, just reminded me of the nursery rhyme about Humpty Dumpty. Let's just hope this situation turns out a little better.


Linnea said…
From Mom, via email...


I just now read your blog from yesterday - and please stop fretting that I will be upset and/or crushed over the incident. Trust me, I have done damage to some of Grammy's treasures as well: crystal glasses chipped in the dishwasher or broken to pieces when I knocked them over; a depression glass flower holder that was part of a set; a glass pitcher that I loved that sat in her kitchen which I stupidly put in the microwave to heat water and the bottom fell out and even more crushing, last year - the Green Santa (remember him?) that was porcelain and one of the dolls she made and dressed in a green santa suit no less - has broken boots and is missing one hand because he fell out of his stand! I, too, glued the boots back together and felt near tears but then I remembered an article Grammy shared with me written by a woman who had inherited her mother's fine english bone china set and was obsessed with keeping it intact - afraid to use it on special occasions in case something might happen to it and when she did use it she was a nervous wreck about it. Until one day she realized she was a "slave" to protecting it, cleaning it, storing it, etc.
So, she let the angst go - and decided to just enjoy it! Grammy said that was how she felt about all that "stuff" she had and kept. She had finally decided to use and enjoy it. And another thing that may make you feel better - she was excellent at gluing back together any and everything. And she did: teacups, lamps, dolls, dishes, glasses, candlesticks and more. I know 'cause I still have some of them. So everytime you look at the "beheaded" Joseph and the angel with broken wings with little break lines neatly glued back together - remember that Grammy would love them that way and use them just the same!

Love always,

P. S. The whole blog was priceless and I loved it.

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