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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.
michael b

To Santa or not to Santa?

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I am not sure what I am going to do. I am pretty sure I will do the song Boogie Woogie Santa, My daughter loves it so much. I have an idea that is pretty involved. If I decide to take it on then I will have Santa, otherwise I won't.

I know that is vague, but I like to keep some things under wraps until I finish my display.

Anyone else have thoughts on this subject.

Michael B

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Guest Lightzilla

I was given two santa's.1 has santa on a rope latter with a few of his friends. I have him on the side of the house, and he is only about 16 inches high. I don't think any one notices him. Then I have santa, a deer and a snowman on a ski lift, but again he is only 16 inches high. (since he is sitting, he is smaller yet.) The ski lift will be gone (to cheap it broke) but I am gonig to re-cicle the deer, santa and the snow man, perhaps on the Ferris Wheei that I am curently working on, or have them on a small bench sitting in front of the manger.....at lease this way people see that santa is adoring the King of Kings, and the Lord of Lords too. Of course you can look at santa like this....mix the letters around and you have satan, both are pictured in red suits, etc. I do not want any santa's larger than the ones I already have, these two are big enough and there are two to many already.

Having said that, I will be making a few changes to my manger scene this coming year. It needs to be larger.

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SPaschall wrote:

I believe santa is great for teaching not only the spirit of giving, but also teaches on the principal of believing in not what we see. which we as christians are taught to do. The chilriden will grow out of santa just don't let them grow out of their faith.

SPaschall

The chilriden will grow out of santa just don't let them grow out of their faith.

Well said! I agree!!

Whilethere may not be "one" answer for everyone, I feel that having parts of your display that appeal to different people may be the best way...There's a little bit for everyone who views it!

In my opinion, no one's display, (either with or without a Nativity or Santa) isgoing to "make or break" someone else's walk in their own personal faith. However,it may spark their curiosity...

Somepeople'scuriosity issparked by whimsical themes, some by serious themes and some folks just see the lights and are amazed by what we can do!

However, no matter what ourintentions are when we put up our display, beauty is in the eye of the beholder...and everyonesees whatthey need to see. Sometimes a display will speak to someones heart in a special way we never imagined possible!

That's the magic of Christmas!

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At least in my family, we always remember that Santa is St. Nicolas, himself a follower of Christ. So to us seeing a Santa never takes away from Christ, but is just another person honoring His birthday.

For me, it's possible to celebrate the religious nature of Christmas, while enjoying the secular side. To that end my display will have both elements. In my sequencing, I don't plan to have the Nativity lit at the same time as the Toy Soldiers or Santa type elements, because to me mixing them just doesn't feel right. I do feel they each have their own place in the celebration of Christmas.

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Guest Lightzilla

Kathy Byrd wrote:

SPaschall wrote:

Sometimes a display will speak to someones heart in a special way we never imagined possible!

That's the magic of Christmas!

Well said. I want my display to fill every heart with tidings of great joy. I had people say "your house made my night". I had a church youth group stand in front of my display this year enjoying what they saw, with a smile on thier faces from ear to ear. Waving at us. I had both static and musical this past year, and it well be better this coning year. I am again leaving the house and garage lit up and the manger (as I want people see that Christ is the light of the world). I won't include the manger in a musical light show. For me it must stay lit.

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When the news media did their second interview for the 2007 season the words came to me - your display is a gift to your community - how you draw their attention to the fact that Jesus is the reason for the season is up to you. You can watch the interview within the video we published here -> http://www.owt.com/users/vwatch/2007HolidayLightSpectacularMQ.wmv

:]

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Guest Scot Meyers

You can mix them well with computer control. make your display a show bring your characters to life. and then bring the show to climactic point maiking the nativity the focus.

I have a Santa scene that i have been working on for sometime. with reindeer and a sleigh. However when the Nativity story is read the entire display shuts off except the static house lights. the blowmold nativity pieces light up on cue as thier piece of the story is told brining the story to life and bringing the focus ENTIRELY on the real CHRISTmas story the miracle of the birth of Christ.

I love my display its become more a disney-esc type of show. and as i build more home made stuff. it just brings the magic of the season to life.

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Michael,

It's August and I'm just reading this thread but I wanted to respond to your question. I am a Christian who loves everything about Christmas including shopping and Santa. I've always had a sign in my yard that says:

"He left angels and glory to lay in a bed of hay,

He came to pay a debt He didn't owe,

To save us from a debt we couldnt pay."

Last year I was busy doing a float for our local Christmas parade which inlcuded LOR and a snow machine. By the time I was able to start on my house, I was already running way behind schedule and in addition to all of this, I had to cut down a tree that was the central part of the whole theme. Long story made short, I forgot about the sign. By the time I remembered, it was too late and I left the sign out. I felt terrible about it ever since then. That sign brought a man to my front door one Christams Eve who had never heard the gospel and wanted me to explain what the sign meant. I'll never make the mistake of thinking about the "message" of Christmas last again.

Having said that, I just believe you can have both secular and Christian, but once you start using faith in your display, don't ever leave it out.

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SPaschall wrote:

The chilriden will grow out of santa just don't let them grow out of their faith.

Well said! I agree!!

Well or they outgrow Santa Claus... that is until they have children of their own and the tradition recycles itself with a new generation.

Listen it is definately all about Christ, but Santa is fun, so are snow men, etc. It all just adds more to the tradition that Christian's adore!

Now the easter bunny... THAT needs to go! Besides I noticed an arguement that was brought up by religious scholars that believe the birth of Christ actually happened around April 15 as there was a documented Super Nova in the skies around 15 thru 17th in the year zero. Also the bible mentions something about shephards in the fields at the birth of Christ so that also places the birth in spring, and also many believe that Christ was put on the cross in December so it seems we actually have our two holidays backwards.

In any case the real Saint Nicholas was a devote Christian and was also filthy rich by inheritance and his legend grew because he was known to give everyone in town, especially the children valuable gifts at Christmas. The coming down chimineys, flying raindeer and other stuff is only legends that have exaggerated over the centuries, but the true Saint Nicholas was indeed a religious good man and set a fine example for others to follow. I dont see any reason why we should not remember the man's deeds and examples which for the most part dont conflict with the story of Christ.

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My display is both secular and religious....I do have themed areas...but it's not to separate the different sides but to make my big yard make more sense.

I don't have any problem with santa....I think he brings a lot to Christmas...the spirit of giving...a warm feeling when you see him...he brings smiles to people and brings families together....much like Jesus does...

I think Jesus would like santa very much.

Jesus is the reason for the season...but santa is a big part of that season too and if he brings people to view the display and there is a nativity to get the real message across...I think it's a good thing...

It would be different if he were portrayed as a Godlike figure and had followers that worshiped him as such...but Santa has always seemed to exist as just a beloved figure of Christmas...no different than snowmen and other Christmas time figures...

I don't see santa taking anything away from Jesus in a display anymore than a lightshow...mega trees...trains and ferris wheels...

Unless of course a display has all or some of those elements and does not include a nativity.

Now what I don't get...

How can you exclude santa from your display and say it's all about Christ yet still celebrate with santa coming and bringing gifts?

That to me sounds hypocritical...

not trying to offend anyone...just stating my opinion.

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Now what I don't get...

How can you exclude santa from your display and say it's all about Christ yet still celebrate with santa coming and bringing gifts?

That to me sounds hypocritical...

not trying to offend anyone...just stating my opinion.

That is a good question, Jen. My answer is: I want the focus to be on Christ and not Santa. I like Santa and what he represents, I feel that Santa has taken over the Holiday. For my display, Christ should be first. I might at some time have Santa, but I want Christ and the reason for Christmas to stand out. I use Linus' speach to tell about Christ's birth. I also have elements in my display that are fun, like a wireframe train and a snowman. I will be adding more through the years.

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I've heard that having Santa kneeling at the nativity scene is a way to bring them together.

I personally like the idea, but others don't. Some like to keep the two figures seperate in their display. Each to their own, I say.

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I LOVE the idea of santa keeling at the nativity!! if i ever find a blowmold of that i will have it!! whats the diffence in having santa over a snowman, train, or even a christmas tree?? those have nothing to do with jesus?? santa is a great story that shows the greatness of giving. and fills the hearts and minds of children of all ages with feelings of joy and happiness! its all about the gift of chirst! what greater gift has ever been given??

"santy claus knows we're all gods children that makes everything right"

Jim : )

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How can you have a train or a snowman in your display and not have a Santa Claus. I somehow missed something here. I also think the Nativity should be the main attraction in a Christmas display. What about all the dancing lights and the music you have to turn a radio to a certain channel to listen to. That is about as religious as you can get . If anyone wants to show their true feeling about Jesus is the Reason, turn out all the lights on the house, and cut off all music. Put a old time 150 watt spotlight on Baby Jesus in your Nativity. Go out to the road and look at your display now. That is about as close to the night that Jesus was born as you are going to get. But I guess if we all did that the economy would falter and it would be us Christmas fanatics to blame. Just my one cent worth. Thanks.

DUB

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DUB,

You are funny.

I am slowly working my way to adding more elements. I purchased the train for $10. I sanded, repainted and put on the lights. The Snowman was given to me. I took off the old lights and put on new lights. My budget is low this year. So when I have more money other elements will slowly appear. Maybe a Santa, maybe not. :)

How can you have a train or a snowman in your display and not have a Santa Claus. I somehow missed something here. I also think the Nativity should be the main attraction in a Christmas display. What about all the dancing lights and the music you have to turn a radio to a certain channel to listen to. That is about as religious as you can get . If anyone wants to show their true feeling about Jesus is the Reason, turn out all the lights on the house, and cut off all music. Put a old time 150 watt spotlight on Baby Jesus in your Nativity. Go out to the road and look at your display now. That is about as close to the night that Jesus was born as you are going to get. But I guess if we all did that the economy would falter and it would be us Christmas fanatics to blame. Just my one cent worth. Thanks.

DUB

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I love santa at the nativity too....I hope to find that mold one day...

I saw some pretty Christmas cards in a catalog that had scenes with santa kneeling at the manger and going to a church on christmas eve...they were pretty...

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Wow, what a wonderful message. I see this posted in 2008, maybe having a new post on the thread will get people reading it again. Brought tears to my eyes and reminded me that I too get caught up in the NEW Christmas. I need to step back and remember the OLD Christmas.

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My husband and I was also torn about having Santa in our display our soluation was to set up zones . One is our mega tree and small trees Second is Santa themed and the Third is our nativity . Needless to say we are using our neighbors yards also. So it gives something for everyone.

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Although i enjoy the secular part of Christmas. I choose a few years back to make the Nativity the center of my display. I use mostly religious songs however i do have a few secular ones i run. I actually did the polar express this year which i thought might be inappropriate but seeing as it was a request from a friends little granddaughter i figured it would be ok. Last year the ACLU sued over the Nativity display at our courthouse.Well the ACLU can't stop mine.

Merry Christmas

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Saint Nicholas is a Christian Saint. I see no reason not to include him among the display, even if the only image available at Christmastime is the secular elf version.

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I just noticed this thread has been revisited. Update on my display. I have no Santa, but not against having one. I love and believe in Santa. The Nativity takes up a large part of my display. I have a voice over done by Kevin stating why we do the display, to celebrate the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ. We play Amazing Gace(Adapted from Richard Holdman's sequences) right after the VO. Later in a 14 song show we have Linus' speech, followed by the Charlie Brown song. I have TSO songs, Boogie Woogie Santa Claus, Santa's Boogie Woogie Choo Choo Train(Adapted from Monkman's sequence), Carol of the Bells, House on Christmas Street, etc... I believe there is a place for both Santa and Jesus, but for me Jesus is the main focus.

Thanks to all for your lively discussion on the matter.

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Guest Lightzilla

Saint Nicholas is a Christian Saint. I see no reason not to include him among the display, even if the only image available at Christmastime is the secular elf version.

I have a question for you. How did St Nicholas become a Christian?

Edited by Lightzilla

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Like others I placed the manger scene first and foremost for people entering our driveway. There are no other lights around the blow molds so people actually LOOK over and see it. Then I have snowmen and others down the driveway farther. And only one Santa (part of an air blown I got from Walmart this year.) I had a "forest" of snowmen air blowns all in one area but I think next year I'll spead them out as well. It uses a lot more cords but covers more area.

Speaking of - time to go take them down. If my wife is not parked in the way. :-) I would have started earlier but it rained... Five snows in December and then on Jan 2nd it RAINED. Geez. Air blowns are all nice and wet. :-(

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