"It is good to be children sometimes, and never better than at Christmas when its mighty Founder was a child Himself."~Charles Dickens
I've always wanted to see England at Christmas. It makes me think of plum pudding with a sprig of holly on top, roasted chestnuts, and those charming old buildings with bow windows and snow decorating the window panes. I picture centuries old fireplaces with crackling fires, wassailing, and voices with Cockney accents singing "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen." In essence, Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol."
This year, our new (two years ago) entertainment center underwent a Christmas metamorphosis for the first time. I'm sure most of you have seen the Department 56 villages about a million times, and I don't want to bore you with a million and one times. But...we've been collecting this village (off and on) for about 20 years, and we're kind of attached to it. Some years I don't put it out at all -- just don't have the time or energy to drag it all out. But the hubby and I really enjoy looking at it during the holidays, and our son was fascinated with it when he was little.
Here are some pictures of our Christmas village -- along with part of the TV screen and two black speakers in the background. :-/
Like most of our other Christmas things, this village has sentimental meaning for me because all the pieces were given to me by family members over the years. My husband bought me this cathedral last year. I wasn't planning to add any more buildings, as we had exactly the right amount to fit on the entertainment center. But this piece was discounted last Christmas, so my husband surprised me with it. It really does look pretty with the other pieces.
The first building I got was The Old Curiosity Shop; my mom gave it to me for Christmas. My mother-in-law gave me the White Horse Bakery that same Christmas, and she also gave me the fruit vendor.
Do you see the sign hanging on the front of the King's Road Post Office? I love all the details in this village.
The next Christmas, my mom gave me the the Knottinghill Church, and another year she gave me Doolittle's flower vendor. Well, you get the picture. I won't bore you with who gave me every single piece. But I will tell you about one more that's really special to me.
See the man in the top hat carrying a big stack of books? He's in front of a sign that reads "Antiquarian Bookseller." Our son, Will, picked that out for me all by himself several years ago, and I just adore it. Will knows that I worked at a book store for four years before his dad and I got married, and I love books. This was the perfect addition to our little English village.
Unfortunately, you can see the little wires for the street lamps in some of these pictures. They're fairly thin wires and they're white, so I thought they might not be too visible. But in close-up photographs, everything shows. Next year, we'll have to cut four small holes in the felt and run the wires underneath, like we've done in the past.
I edited some of these pictures in Picasa and added a "glow" effect.
Thank you for visiting! May your days be merry and bright. :)