But in my ruminations on what the birth of Christ and the atmosphere in the stable would have been like, I felt that our Lord likely took his first breath in more austere surroundings. So my wife and I gathered some twigs from a foot path near our home and I began a tedious process of piecing them together with hot glue (admittedly, not a favoured construction method in the first century) and plunked it on a scrap block of wood.
We found hand-crafted nativity figures at Sears, and spent a bit of time opening the various boxes there to make sure that Our Lady wasn't horribly wall-eyed and that our Saviour's red lips were placed in the right spot on his face.
Of course, being a stable, there has to be animals.
And today we begin celebrations of the Epiphany; the coming of the wise men from the East (slightly obscured behind the support pillar) to find the new king.