August 01, 2006
This is a fairly new treasure but it's going to be in my family forever I'm sure. This is my Willow Tree nativity. The entire set. I've had it just a little under two years.
I love Willow Tree figurines. The first time I saw them was in my mother-in-law's oncologist's office. Several angels were on display in the waiting room and I later learned each one of them was a gift from a cancer patient to the nurses. Nurses who work in an oncologist's office are special people.
I liked the angels so much I looked them up on the web when I got home. Right away I saw the nativity collection. Then I saw the price. You can't buy it one piece at a time. The collection is actually three sets (the basic nativity, the wise men and the shepherd/barn animals). And the wooden creche, star backdrops and angel of prayer and stands are sold separately, too. So I sort of sighed and decided to forget about it.
Over the next two years, I occasionally went back to the web site and looked at the collection. But it really wasn't something I could do. We still had a daughter in college and we were getting ready for a big move across the state to relocate to western Colorado. We had no extra money, especially for something I didn't really need.
Rob and I made several trips back and forth over the mountains trying to find a home and get the move accomplished. During the last trip, we were both just tired and tense. We were waiting to hear about the house. We were staying in yet another hotel. And we were dreading the move. So we decided to kill the afternoon, while we were waiting, at the mall.
I no longer even remember what started it but we were snapping at each other. Something Rob said hit me the wrong way and I acted like a big baby - a spoiled brat actually. I started crying right there in public and told him I had to get away from him for a little while. We agreed to meet at the food court an hour later. Then I marched into the biggest, nicest department store at the mall and proceeded to buy out the Clinique counter. I really was acting ridiculous - one of my worst menopausal moments.
When we met at the food court I was still pouting. He didn't say a word about the big department store bag full of Clinique. We agreed to go back to the hotel and see if the call we were waiting for had come in. As we were leaving, he said, "Let's stop in at Hallmark for a minute. I saw something I want to show you." I said, "You know what? No. I'm tired. Let's just hit Burger King and go back to the hotel." He said, "I really want you to see this." So I continued to pout and sniff and stomped over to Hallmark with him.
When we walked into the store, the woman behind the counter reached behind her and sat three huge bags on the counter and gave Rob a big smile. I just stood there and thought, what on earth could he have bought in here that fills these three huge bags?
He took me over to the counter and handed me the first bag. When I looked inside, I knew what he'd done. I almost fainted when I realized Rob had bought me the entire Willow Tree nativity. Without even thinking, because, you know, I can be a smart alec occasionally, I said, in front of everyone in the store, "I'm calling the attorney. I'm stopping the paperwork."
We walked out of that store smiling and happy again (especially me.)
And I learned a lesson. It's so easy to take people you love for granted. Rob's the love of my life and I was acting like I couldn't stand to be near him. He felt so bad about hurting my feelings, he did something amazingly special like this to apologize to me. He didn't have to do that. But I love that he knew how much it would mean to me to have something I never thought I'd have.
I have a beautiful hutch from my mother-in-law's estate. The only things in it are the Willow Tree figurines my family has given me since I fell in love with them in the doctor's office. But I'll never put the nativity in it. It's out in full view in my living room. Every time I see it I'm reminded of the birth of our Lord. And I'm also reminded, constantly, how special my husband is and how lucky I am.
To see more treasures and perhaps share a treasure of your own, visit Faithful Mommy.
Posted by Barb at 6:45 AM