Since there was some interest (a tiny bit) in the saga of my little turtle...
Now he has reached the soldiers, who are telling him the story of how in the middle of a war, the birth of a very special child helped them to connect, for a short and precious time, with the men across enemy lines. They didn't all put down their weapons, and it only lasted for one day, but it was a tiny ray of humanity in a mud and blood-soaked time in history.
The turtle will not forget. He still has a long way to go, but he will spend tonight with the soldiers.
Meanwhile, the cats have arrived at the stable:
They're hanging out with the birds on the roof.
And finally, my favourite Santa (I mis-typed "Satan"; see what these secular toys do to me?!):
That's a 1940s bottle brush tree behind him; while I love the ones with little ornament balls on them, I am a total snob when it comes to the reproductions (though those are some pretty awesome reproduction bits they have, and bless them for re-creating the stuff for people who can't afford or find the originals). I lucked out on mine and found them cheap, but they're getting harder and harder to find, as retro Christmas has become a *huge* thing (and what does it say about our unsettled state as a nation that our biggest shopping trend is retro?)(sigh). If you find some cheap, snap them up.
The first Santa is older than this one:
But this Santa has one of the oldest creatures on the table helping him - the little pale brown reindeer is from the late 1800s, and is papier mache and wood. The more robust reindeer in front of that one is a repro reindeer from the company I linked to above; he was too beautiful to resist, and Bob got him for me a couple of Christmases ago. The Santa himself is from the 1950s, and is injection moulded plastic.
(Side note: See the Stork? He's standing on top of the inn. Bob found him (he's probably from the '60s) and suggested it. Mind you, the "bundle of joy" he's carrying is pink, but the colour pink wasn't always associated with girls (though it certainly is now - neat photos, huh?)).