When I was young my grandparents had a Christmas village. It sat on top of the old console TV and lit up. I just loved those tiny plastic houses.

Someone bought me my own set. They are fragile bits of plastic which hung on a string of 10 Christmas lights. Gramp knew he could do better. He took my little houses and built a base for them with colored lights and artificial “snow”; powered by a bell transformer and wired so that if one went out the others would stay on.

I still cherish that set.

Time is hard on old decorations. The houses are more brittle than ever, and the base needs rebuilding. It has a large footprint which fit well on top of an antique television, but I have no good place to display it. It has needed some TLC for a few years.

Our living room has built-in shelves, but the Village doesn’t fit. This year I modified one of my model display platforms to hold the houses. They are now lit with battery powered LED lights. I have more artificial snow to finish the effect. The original base will be stored away for posterity.