That is the card I sent with a box full of “more than one Jesus” to my amazing friend Pam. It pretty much sums up this adventure. First lesson of this adventure: What is the plural of Jesus. I know, I know, there was only “ONE” Jesus but for the purpose of ornamental Jesus – is it Jesi, Jesuses, Jessusses….? For the purpose of this blog we will say “more than one Baby Jesus”. For reference, I thought Jesi but a little research and one linguistic specialist email later, that is wrong. She told me that “Jesus” is the plural of “Jesus” – kinda like “deer”.
So, Pam has a long history of being upset over the untimely presentations of the Baby Jesus in the manger at Christmastime. In her opinion, he should not be there until ON Christmas Day because that is when he was born. She has been known to steal the Baby from his all-too-early manger in a friend’s house. Well, allow me to present Exhibit A, Pam’s own words….
For those of you who are regular readers of this blog, you will know that I find myself very funny. I find that the older I get the less I care whether anyone is laughing with me. Picture a light bulb flipping on over my head! The thought struck me as such! I would send Pam a box of more than one Baby Jesus for Christmas! This would be epic! So, I thought I would easily throw together this whole wild crazy box of more than one Jesus within a couple of days because it was the onset of Christmastime and…you know, the reason for the season and all. Lesson number two: although it is Christ that the season is named for, the stores are only worried about one guy: Benjamin. My first stop (due to my location and limited sources) was The Walmart. Ten aisles of Christmas merch. You had stockings (with no Baby Jesus represented):
There were stocking stuffers, yet none were Jesus-specific:
Then, in the very last aisle of Christmas paraphernalia I found it – one LITTLE section (less than six foot on only one side) of Nativity items, with proper signage:
And they had multiple single Babies Jesus (Babies Jesus!! That is my plural form!!! YES!)
I bought all three pictured there. All three at the next Walmart and then a couple more at each Walmart I happened to visit. I thought, at the first location, that some jokester put the rooster in the Nativity filler pieces. I mean, come on! The rooster is bigger than the cow! Is that how they grew back then?? There were full nativity scenes for purchase but for the purposes of this blog, I was looking for stand alone Babies Jesus. Lesson #3: these were made in a country other than the US and, those Babies were not made with the level of respect befitting of the Baby Jesus:
The four small pics: Glamour Shot Baby, Winking Baby, Angry Baby, Drunk Baby and the big picture Unibrow Baby. Shameful. The lot. As a side note, I had a checkout clerk say out loud: “You have three Baby Jesuses on the conveyor.” I answered “Yes” without even looking up from unloading my cart, matter-of-factly and with purpose (in the hopes of Good Baby Jesus Hunting Karma).
So, on to other stores because it was just a fluke, right? That this store (Walmart) had only three of the one type? Well, I went to Books A Million where there were scores of books on the Baby Jesus, his history, his story, etc. There were no Baby Jesus Funko Pops, there were no Baby Jesus action figures. I was disheartened. Then, in the impulse buy section of the store I found a Teeny Tiny Nativity. Seriously, it was called “Teeny Tiny Nativity”. In retrospect, this might be my favorite of all the Babies Jesus I would purchase. It is made of wood and had a little book about the birth of the King. Lesson #4 bookstores never fail me.
My only con to this set is that they could have changed up Joseph from the Shepherd…. They were one and the same. Or….were they brothers?
Leaving BAM and making my way through the mall I thought I would find a virtual cornucopia of Babies Jesus. But alas, I did not. Until… one of those random vendor kiosks in the middle. There was a guy selling wooden carvings of the Nativity made of wood from the Holy Land. YES! I asked if he had standalone Babies Jesus and he DID! He directed me to two. I asked the price, it was a bit and I negotiated with him and explained my adventure and he was accommodating. He discounted this Baby Jesus for me and I said YES! This is the Certified Baby Jesus, the real deal. And, the best looking one out of the bunch. Lesson #5 most people will work with you on even the most random of requests.
I went on to AJ Moore, a artsy fartsy craft store. I found two possibilities, but only bought one, Button Jesus (yes, he is a button that can be sewed on something). There was a weird foam nativity that felt weird and because I have issues with weird textures, I passed on picking it up. The Baby Button Jesus was cool though. Lesson #6 I have limits, even on Baby Jesus purchases.
At Michael’s I found the most contented looking Baby Jesus of them all. Look at that little ceramic face! He is just so happy!! No lessons learned on this one, just utter contented happy face.
On a trip back to the Walmart I found window clingons of the Nativity (this is officially the Star Trek manger). The manger is empty and separate until you put the Baby in it. I think Pam will like this. My fave part of this depiction is the tiny little mice adoring the Baby Jesus. When I was a kid, Ma bought me tons of colorforms. Snoopy, Marvel Super Heroes, Holly Hobby. There were tons of varying characters. They were imagination builders and I LOVED them.
Ok, time to try my luck online. You can find ANYTHING online.
eBay is my friend and proved very fruitful. I ordered a Fisher Price Little People Baby Jesus Nativity replacement baby. As a side note, I will eventually buy myself that entire Nativity. Kinda loved it. So, it arrived and I put it somewhere. I cannot remember where. I tear my car apart, cannot find it. I tear my office apart, cannot find it. Then, right before I was planning on mailing out the package… I found Jesus. He was hiding in a box of magazines and books I intended on putting away… He is adorable!
Then things got a little weird. I ordered “replacement Nativity babies” from Oriental Express. The picture was itty bitty but the description was what I was after. It was cheap (Oriental Express and all) so I said “12 pack, SURE!” Placed order. This is what I received:
YOU SIT ON A THRONE OF LIES!! Those are not Babies Jesus. Those are nekkid babies. I just ordered a bag of nekkid babies! This is not as described! But, it was $1.25 for a pack of 12 and you get what you pay for… Lesson #6 don’t trust things you read on the internet.
Onto another online store where the picture of the Baby Jesus seemed angelic. It was another “pack of”. I had not received nekkid babies yet so I had no idea of the perils in ordering online Babies Jesus. So… I clicked “buy”….
For some reason, these terrify me. They do NOT look angelic in person. They are the scary babies. They look as if they are poised to pounce. They make me uncomfortable. Maybe Pam can make them cheery….
Back to eBay, I found a “Boy Scout type Nativity Patch” for $1.78 and free shipping. Thank you Kathy! Pam has just earned her Christmas patch!!
Another “impulse purchase” gave me a beautiful wise mean nod (or as Bobby says, one of the three wise guys)… Just a couple of magic marker adjustments and voila…..
So, let’s pack these Babies up to ship to Pam:
And I put the box lid on the box for the final Babies Jesus reference….
So, let’s tally the numbers:
- 8 Walmart Babies Jesus
- 1 teeny-tiny Nativity Jesus
- 1 certified Jesus from BethlehAm
- 1 button Jesus
- 1 contented Baby Jesus (with his Mom and Dad on a donkey, we will call him Dominic)
- 1 clingon (not really Star Trek) Baby Jesus with a manger accessory
- 1 Fisher Price Little People Baby Jesus
- 12 nekkid babies that someone lied to me and sold me as fake nativity baby replacements
- 10 scary Babies Jesus that I hope Pam does not wake up in the middle of the night and find one on her pillow staring at her
- Boy Scout Baby Jesus patch
- Wise Guy “Him” plaque
- Another Wise Guys “Him” reference
37 Babies Jesus, two sets of Wise Guy “Him” references and 6 lessons learned. That is a successful Christmas adventure if I ever had one!
I love my friends and Pam is one of the best. She sends me cards at random times that always make me smile. She offers encouragement when I am struggling with things. She makes my life brighter, through being herself and allowing me to do silly things like “this”. I love you Pam. Merry Christmas. I hope this made you laugh…. Also, next year I am sending Rick a couple so he can hide them and be the first to bring Baby Jesus into the house.
This was her display today of Babies Jesus:
Merry Christmas everyone! Tell your friends you love them – often!!
Michelle! 38! I don’t know how to add a photo, but you included a card and it had a tiny charm/ornament that said Jesus. So, it wasn’t actually a Jesus….
My mother walked into my heathen home on Christmas day. Mom! I exclaim. Did you see my Baby Jesus (plural). Eye roll, and Yes Pamela. Then, gotta hand it to Michelle….
I love the Michael’s BJ.
The Wal-Mart ones lost their hands and are freaking.
I didn’t do the window clings. Maybe Ricks bathroom mirror?
The effort, the time, the thought, the adventure, the education….all worth it. You are amazing. And no one but me could appreciate a gift of this magnitude. That said, I expect a BJ a year to add to my collection. I will spend the next 364 days working on a manger to fit them all.