Small houses laden with snow surrounded by Christmas trees and little people made of porcelains or poyresins. This familiar household decoration is even made grander by surrounding it with brightly colored LED lights that truly enliven the scene. Have you guessed it yet? Right! It’s a miniature Christmas village!
Christmas in the Philippines is characterized by several traditions. One of them is the display of the “belén” — a tableau depicting the birth of Jesus Christ, the reason for the season, in the manger with Mary and Joseph, the three kings, the shepherds and barn animals. Most of the time, the Christmas belen also includes the star and the angel. Through time and the influence of western culture, the nativity scene have been extended to a miniature Christmas village depicting several houses, snowed in driveways, couples, parents and children and even Santa Claus with his sleigh. This tiny community brightens up any home and any young kid’s eyes. For children, especially those that come from a tropical country like the Philippines, the sight of a Christmas village awakens dreams of faraway places covered with snow during the holidays. It fuels the fantasies of a white Christmas, making snow angels and falling asleep in front of the chimney waiting for Santa Claus to arrive.
So this coming Yuletide season, consider starting up your own Christmas village and asking your kids to help you organize and design it. Make it a yearly tradition aside from putting up a Christmas tree and shop for one village addition each year. This experience will not only allow you to share with them that holiday feeling we all still feel giddy about (whatever age we are now!) but also give them special Christmas memories with you that they will always remember as they grow up. You’ll see, your Christmas lights would not be the only ones to light up inside your homes.
Make your household a real Christmas Village this year and echo the cheer and LOVE that the season brings in! Good luck with that new holiday must-do with your family and do not forget the real reason for the season! Merry Christmas to you!