The Fender family's Christmas creations - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

The Fender family's Christmas creations

Julia Bennett Julia Bennett
Calvin Fender Calvin Fender
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December 23, 2003

Lanier Co. -- From a distance, it looks like a typical home adorned with thousands of Christmas lights. "We just love it, you know there's a child in all of us no matter how old we get," said Julia Bennett.

But if you take a closer look, you'll see that these decorations aren't store bought. They're all carefully constructed by Calvin Fender and his mother-in-law, Julia Bennett. "The lollipops are the little nine ounce cups that we staple together and put lights in, the candy canes I made out of PVC pipe, the suckers are made of Styrofoam, and we put paper around them," said Bennett.

"I just cut a bunch of metal, form it, drill all the holes in it and put the lights in," said Calvin Fender.

Almost every single decoration in their yard is hand-made from some sort of household item. Fender even paints each and every one of his lights. "You buy stained glass paint, then tape them all off and spray them until you get them the right color," said Fender.

And with each creation, the family tries to send a message. "I try to tell the story of Jesus, when he was born and then rose from the cross to give us the best Christmas gift we could have," said Bennett.

When taking down last year's decorations, the family stopped counting at 50,000 lights, and next year's additions are already in the works.

posted at 12:50PM by ashley.harper@walb.com