shesnosaint’s Top 10 Weird eBay Nativity Sets!

This one is very mooving. Glory to the moo born king!

There are several incarnations of blessed animal sets…this one is for all the crazy cat ladies:

Bah rump pah pum pum…meow…

There are dogs, too, of course. This schnauzer set is homemade…I know, hard to believe.

Nativity cupcakes seem strange to me primarily because they aren’t edible.

Yummy Baby Jesus!

You can even take a bath with a holy family of rubber duckies. I wonder if they squeak/squirt.

Prefer showers?

Many of the sets are for both decorative and practical use. You could use the thimbles as you sew for the church all year long. Mind where you put your fingers. Several scenes are made with blonde children…it’s a creepy recurring theme and I can’t understand why.

This one is a tea set. You can drink out of a sheep’s back and put sugar in the camel’s hump under the chicken lid…

St. Joseph’s teddy bear head pops right off to accommodate creamer.

More adorable blonde children (and no baby Jesus?)…

The hands down winner of weirdness is the clown water globe nativity!

And a bonus bit of eBay holiday magic…the headless gingerbread man. Enjoy!

The Cancer Ghost of Christmas Past

This is my first Advent season as a confirmed Catholic. So what is it all about? Well, I’m not sure what it is all about yet. I’m new. There is purple involved, and a wreath.

The brief basics are that Advent is a season that happens during four weeks before Christmas. The focus is both on Christ’s historical and future “coming”. Advent means “coming”. It’s a bit like Lent Lite.

Some folks do readings each day during the season, or pray special prayers. One fun thing about Catholicism – there are endless activities and prayers and devotions one can choose to take part in, or not.

Today was my 6 month check in with my Oncologist – which was actually almost 9 mo. because I dread them and they cost beaucoup clams. I was pretty preoccupied with the appointment all day. When I go in, the lab draws blood and I get thoroughly checked out. The big focus for me is on my tumor marker results. There are several markers for cancer, and basically those are all rolled up into one number called your tumor marker. If the number keeps dropping, as has blessedly happened thus far….we’re golden. If the number begins to rise, then it could be an indication there is something malignant happening inside.

Odd thing about cancer – often you can’t feel it and have no idea that you have it. And no idea that you don’t. There is waiting involved. And sometimes the spectre of cancer comes in to haunt and oppress a survivor. What if it comes back? Can I survive it again? What will my family do if I die? It doesn’t end cleanly. No definite resolution.

As soon as I realize I’m being haunted, I can take steps to fight against this spiritual type of cancer. What I do is try to shift the focus to gratitude instead of worry. I change the questions from what if I die to what if this is my last day. What if I hadn’t lived to see this day? What if this is the last time I talk to this person? This person is alive and I’m alive. It feels good to concentrate on being alive…being inside this body, breathing this air, holding this dog on the couch next to my husband. At the very least, this distracts me from pointless fear. At the very best, it’s life-affirming and brings me into blissful moments of being present to the miracles we are surrounded by. So that’s a pretty impressive payoff.

Advent happens during a dark time of the year. We can turn our focus from the dark, short days to the coming light instead. We can look forward to Christmas, and be grateful for the ways that our life has already been blessed. Cancer happens, but it puts the focus on life in the same way that shadow emphasizes the light.