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  • The original Rudolph did not have a red nose. In that day and age, red noses were seen as an indicator of chronic alcoholism and Montgomery Ward didn’t want him to look like a drunkard. To complete the original picture, he was almost named Reginald or Rollo.
  • The Christmas wreath was originally hung as a symbol of Jesus. The holly represents his crown of thorns and the red berries the blood he shed.
  • The three traditional colors of most Christmas decorations are red, green and gold. Red symbolizes the blood of Christ, green symbolized life and rebirth, and gold represents light, royalty and wealth.
  • Tinsel was invented in 1610 in Germany and was once made of real silver.
  • The oldest artificial Christmas trees date back to the late 1800s and were made of green raffia (think grass hula skirts) or dyed goose feathers. Next the Addis Brush Company used their machinery that wove toilet brushes to create pine-like branches for artificial Christmas trees that were less flammable and could hold heavier decorations.
  • ‘Jingle Bells’ – the popular Christmas song was composed by James Pierpont in Massachusetts, America. It was, however, written for thanksgiving and not Christmas.
  • Coca-Cola was the first company that used Santa Claus during the winter season for promotion.
  • Hallmark introduced their first Christmas cards in 1915.
  • The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336, during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine. A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on that day.
  • Santa Claus's sleigh is led by eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dunder (variously spelled Donder and Donner), and Blixem (variously spelled Blixen and Blitzen), with Rudolph being a 20th-century inclusion.
  • Outdoor Christmas lights on homes evolved from decorating the traditional Christmas tree and house with candles during the Christmas season. Lighting the tree with small candles dates back to the 17th century and originated in Germany before spreading to Eastern Europe.
  • That big, jolly man in the red suit with a white beard didn’t always look that way. Prior to 1931, Santa was depicted as everything from a tall gaunt man to a spooky-looking elf. He has donned a bishop's robe and a Norse huntsman's animal skin. When Civil War cartoonist Thomas Nast drew Santa Claus for Harper's Weekly in 1862, Santa was a small elflike figure who supported the Union. Nast continued to draw Santa for 30 years, changing the color of his coat from tan to the red he’s known for today.
  • Christmas 2018 countdown has already begun. Will you be ready???
  • Why do we love Christmas? It's all about the traditions. In this chaotic world we can miss the "good old days." Christmas reminds us of that time.
robcat

My 2011 Display

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Thought I'd share a few pics of my display this year. This is the first year I used a lot of blowmolds. Usually its just inflatables and lights on the house.

These are my grandkids (they really like the sign).

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Almost forgot the patriotic part of my display (thanks HolidayCoro!)

And the one inflatable that my wife made me put up (her whole family are big fans)

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Very nice.. Love the nativity!! The mix of makers adds a lot doesnt it!!! Isnt that blue boy holding the sheep on the left actually a lifesize mold?? That flag/coro is awsome!!

Jim

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Very nice.. Love the nativity!! The mix of makers adds a lot doesnt it!!! Isnt that blue boy holding the sheep on the left actually a lifesize mold?? That flag/coro is awsome!!

Jim

Yes, he's the large size. The white/brown one kneeling beside him is also a little larger scale. I haven't decided whether or not to keep them yet. I do think I'm going to need a few more sheep. The ratio of shepherds to sheep must make my flock the best protected one :lol: . I'd also like to find the Santas Best Joseph (the one holding a lantern) to use as another shepherd.

I really like the flag, too. Only problem - it has 1400 lights and tends to overpower the molds around it. At night you can barely see the Uncle Sams.

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I still have a few more molds to put out (whenever it stops raining). If you look behind the flag, you'll see an ice cream cone. This will be my mini "candyland". I've got three more different cones, two Union lollipops, and a gingerbread man to add.

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Just a suggestion if you want another shepherd you could get the other Empire/General Foam Joseph: (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Empire-Blow-Mold-Nativity-Scene-JOSEPH-/230711612222?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item35b77bd33e) and either use him as Joseph and use your Joseph as a shepherd (or vice versa). You could also use the General Foam Joseph as well. :)

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Very nice. Love the m&m characters

Thanks, but bad news on the M&M's. First vandal damage I've had in a couple of years.. A neighbor called and said one of my inflatables was behind one of her hedges. I checked, and it was the M&M's. Whoever messed with it must not have known a lot about inflatables. They pulled up the ropes and stakes. Then it appears they just tried to pull it up - I guess they didn't know the blower is staked down too. They nearly ripped the entire bottom off - too bad to be patched or repaired. Kinda puts a bad feeling about decorating the yard.

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Guest A.F.NUT

Not sure how I missed this, Your display was amazing! I loved the Nativity, so nicely arranged with so many great additions. The flying sleigh is perfect! And I am so sad to hear about your M&M's that is a great piece!!!

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Great display!! I was wondering how you got your reindeer up in the air? I want do do that but don't know how.

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I wish I could take credit for the idea, but I used the excellent info in A. F. Nut's thread "Flying Empire Reindeer How to Pics". Sorry, but I don't have any pics of mine and it's in storage right now. I used plastic coated 5/16 steel cable. The cable goes through holes drilled in the front and rear of each reindeer and sleigh. The reindeer and sleigh are held in place by cable clamps in front and behind each piece - use whatever spacing looks best. I then used red rope "reins" tied to eyehooks on each side of each piece to help keep everything in line. I made up one continuous light strand with lamp wire and light cords. I did cut Rudolph's nose out, attach a red bulb, and run the wire down inside the body and out a hole drilled beside the light hole. Ziptie the cord to the cable. The "front" of the cable has a loop which goes over a hook screwed into the side of the house. The other end goes through an eye hook screwed into the side of a shed and then to a ratchet strap for tightening. I made the cable and light cord long enough so that I could hook the loop on the house, then run the cable through the eye hook and use the ratchet to raise it into position - it's pretty easy to put up by myself. I would advise to use cable, clamps, and hooks that are fairly heavy. It weighed a lot more that I would have thought after it was finished.

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I wish I could take credit for the idea, but I used the excellent info in A. F. Nut's thread "Flying Empire Reindeer How to Pics". Sorry, but I don't have any pics of mine and it's in storage right now. I used plastic coated 5/16 steel cable. The cable goes through holes drilled in the front and rear of each reindeer and sleigh. The reindeer and sleigh are held in place by cable clamps in front and behind each piece - use whatever spacing looks best. I then used red rope "reins" tied to eyehooks on each side of each piece to help keep everything in line. I made up one continuous light strand with lamp wire and light cords. I did cut Rudolph's nose out, attach a red bulb, and run the wire down inside the body and out a hole drilled beside the light hole. Ziptie the cord to the cable. The "front" of the cable has a loop which goes over a hook screwed into the side of the house. The other end goes through an eye hook screwed into the side of a shed and then to a ratchet strap for tightening. I made the cable and light cord long enough so that I could hook the loop on the house, then run the cable through the eye hook and use the ratchet to raise it into position - it's pretty easy to put up by myself. I would advise to use cable, clamps, and hooks that are fairly heavy. It weighed a lot more that I would have thought after it was finished.

Okay thank you!! I really want to try it. And I already did the same thing with Rudolph's nose and I love it!

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I also used AF Nut's guide for wiring up my reindeer last year. I did mine in 2 rows, but the basic cabling and wiring are the same. I ran the plastic coated cable through the deer, and used one continuous piece of lamp wire, with 2 C7 lamp sockets spliced in for each deer. I did my deer in groups of 4, and spliced a plug in at the back of the group, and a socket at the front. Santa and sleigh also have a plug at the back and a socket on the front, and so does Rudolf. As robcat said, the whole group is very heavy. Since I put the decorations up myself, it's much easier to handle in smaller groups, and just plug them into each other once they're up on the roof. I used 1x2's to maintain the spacing between the 2 rows of 4 deer. This year, I'm going to add the red rope lights on the front side for the reins, they definitely complete the look! Here are some pics (Note: I didn't get my Rudolf till a week or so after these pictures, that's why you don't see him here, but he was up on the roof before Christmas!)

reindeer-wiring-1.jpg

reindeer-wiring-2.jpg

reindeer-wiring-3.jpg

reindeer-wiring-4.jpg

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