Each year on Christmas Eve we act out and read the story of Christ’s birth. It is a favorite tradition that is much anticipated as Christmas draws near. Last year we began in earnest to establish costumes for this activity, with the plans to add to our collection each year. This year rather than add more costumes we decided to build a manger. We went super simple in design and construction with emphasis on child involvement instead of right angles, straight lines, and even spacing. It is a manger after all, not fine furniture! We opted for pine…because it’s cheap, and easy for littles to cut and nail into. We used some scrap boards from our stash for the end pieces, and picked up firring strips from Home Depot ($1.30ish for 8ft lengths) for the sides. Firring strips are cheap and rougher and definitely imperfect. Just the right look for our manger! The manger sits right on the floor with no legs…just a precaution as the littles are very anxious to be able to use a real baby in it one day. (They have every intention of using our own little babe next Christmas, and it took a while to tune them in to the realities of a nearly one year old!!!)
We turned our kitchen into a shop for a few hours and the remainder of the day (no joke) was spent reenacting the most beautiful story ever told. It’s moments like that that sink so deep into a mothers heart they become more than memories.