Ms Laura Ong, 54, is a stickler for details. She believes that the nativity scene, which depicts biblical characters Joseph and Mary looking at baby Jesus lying in a manger, should not have the baby in the picture until Christmas Day, which is believed to be his birth day.
The nativity scene forms part of the Christmas decorations at her home every year. And yes, baby Jesus appears in the set-up only after midnight on Christmas Eve.
However, the housewife made an exception when Life visited - she placed the baby among the decor for the photo shoot.
She says: "We are Catholic and every Christmas, we remember the coming of our Messiah born into this world to save humanity. Christmas is more important to my family than Chinese New Year."
Home is a 21/2-storey semi- detached house in Serangoon Garden with husband Max Lee, 56, who owns a mechanical engineering firm, and their two children, Andrea, 25, and Joshua, 19.
Ms Ong remembers her mother decorating the Christmas tree since she was about four years old. "It was a joy to do the decorating together," she says.
Now, her own family decorate the house together every Christmas. They have a traditional theme every year, with natural colours such as green, red and brown with "a touch of bronze and glitter".
The restrained use of dried branches, leaves and flowers throughout the first storey adds a rustic yet elegant look.
A centrepiece of red berries and green leaves in a vase sits on the dining table, with pine cones and electric candle lights beside it. The corners of the mirrors in the hallway and dining area are also decorated in a similar style.
She declines to say how much the family spent on the decorations.
Most of the items are reused from previous years. For instance, the pine cones collected from trips to the United States and Italy are as old as 25 years. And the white plaster nativity scene that sits atop a cabinet in the front hallway was rescued from the Church of Saint Francis Xavier, which the family attends. The church had wanted to throw it out a few years ago.
Her husband and son are in charge of lugging the real Christmas tree into the house. This year, the family has a 3m-tall tree in the living room, which they bought for about $400. It was so tall that even with a ladder, no one in the family could reach the crown to place the star topper. A 1.85m-tall family friend had to help them.
The family attends midnight mass on Christmas Eve before holding a huge party at their place on Christmas Day, when they invite their church's 30-member youth choir to sing.
She says: "We always have friends and family join us for a feast - each of us will cook and add a dish to the table until it is full."
He loves singing angels with candles
After amassing Christmas decorations for about 10 years without being able to display much of the collection in his home, senior graphic designer Vincent Choo is finally able to make his four-room HDB flat in Potong Pasir look extremely festive for the season.
Out of respect for his Taoist parents - his mother died in 2005 and his father died last year - the 41-year-old Catholic had never put up such dramatic decorations at home, only displaying the tree and the nativity scene.
Previously, the bachelor channelled his Christmas creativity towards helping to decorate his church, the Church of Saint Francis Xavier in Serangoon Garden.
Many years ago, Mr Philip Seah and his eldest child, then a toddler, set up the Christmas tree one night while his wife was out. It was a sweet gesture meant to surprise her.
When Ms Christine Chan returned home, she gave him a "big scolding" and he had to take down the tree and ornaments and put them back in the box so that they could set it up together as a family the following weekend - a tradition she values dearly.
Indeed Mr Seah, 60, says: "Decorating the house has been instrumental in bringing the family together."
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