Once upon a midnight cheery, with my eyes bloodshot and bleary,
I considered my Christmas cards upon the cold and lonely floor.
While I pondered, glad but sighing, suddenly I heard some crying,
As if some one awake, lying there behind their bedroom door.
‘Tis the baby’ I muttered, ‘crying there behind the bedroom door -
Only this and nothing more.’
Ah, so quickly I remember we are now in crisp December,
And each separate family member, I must write into the family lore.
I dismissed this small distraction, but soon my body sprung to action,
My babe thus sought reaction, reaction there behind the door.
So quickly I leapt towards the noise, my feet sadly dismissed the toys,
The toys they spread across the floor.
And now the focused mind complies, and shows me those dear butterflies,
Those ones so sweetly, but not discreetly, flying across our dining floor.
Gladys’ friends ran through fleeting, enjoying this fine birthday meeting,
Cheering, laughing, giving greeting, welcomed through our humble door.
Together cake we were eating, and still dancing across the floor.
She is three, and not yet four.
In the Spring we took a drive, to keep our spirits fresh and live,
We constantly research and strive to show our children something more.
To Cincinnati we went looking, at each stop we were booking
Events and dinners, always cooking up a little something more.
A factory making Airstreams, adding fire to our big dreams,
Michigan to Indiana, we took our Toyota van
along Interstate 94.
‘Neath ohanami tree flowers, we savored each precious hour:
Petals fall as April showers and carpet our picnic floor.
Then they ride, the trails they like - he learns to ride a two-wheel bike -
Gladys frustrated on the trike – a game where they keep their own score.
We take summer trips to Cuyahoga and Kelley’s Island Shore.
Eleven miles and they want more.
The summer brought us more good times, traveling and making quick rhymes:
Those tricks for making our kids times enjoyable as we travel back and fore.
We went out to South Dakota, learning much of those Lakota
Before there was a Toyota. We heard stories of ancient lore.
Drew and Gladys caught two big fish, fulfilling one vacation wish.
I wish to have eaten four.
Alas, we camped and took a hike along desert routes the kids like,
Searching, seeking, and looking for those snakes along the desert floor.
Our awesome kids mind and behave while spelunking the deep Wind Cave.
In total darkness they are brave; the Ranger badge they now adore.
They wear it proudly on their shirts along with the other four:
Another at Mount Rushmore.
The Pig Roast came and we were guests. Aunt and Uncle brought out their best;
Welcomed us to a cozy nest, ‘tween New York and the Jersey Shore.
The family gathered for the Roast, a celebration we love most,
No holiday beyond a toast to a family we all adore.
Held but once and then tradition - a tradition forever more.
Always this and nothing more.
The Fall came and school hath started, in a bus Andrew departed;
A first grade course so well charted. We waved goodbye from our front door.
Sweet George toddles quickly walking. A few sweet words he is talking,
With his sister always stalking - quick to wrestle upon the floor.
I can’t keep up although I try, I blink an eye and they grow more.
Filled with love forever more.
Then Halloween comes right after, with the cackling of witch laughter,
The children run ever faster collecting treats from door to door.
A clown, fairy, and a Ranger, keep Uncle from unknown danger,
Neighbor’s houses ever stranger, ghosts now hang from their front door.
The children run down the sidewalk, a bag of treats but they want more.
Memories forever more.
For this year’s Thanksgiving feast, we forewent the trip out East,
At last but never least, we welcomed good friends through our humble door.
The rolls were baked with wine and cheer, those sweet children we hardly hear,
Though we are happy they are near. They play together on the floor.
The day too soon is over and leaves us still wanting more.
We bid farewell from our front door.
Thus the year was filled with treasure, no good way for us to measure,
The singing, swinging, sweet pleasure and love and laughter we adore.
As the kids grow the years are speeding, leaving parents always pleading
That our kids be never needing. To our dear children we implore,
‘It’s not a sin to play to win, but in love you can’t keep score.
Love each other ever more.’
The kids wake, ‘What is the matter?’- a rising pitch of cheerful chatter;
Still I hear the pitter patter of footie p.j.s on the floor.
Whatever happened to that crying behind their closed bedroom door?
Now my eyes sag and are seeming to wish for the pillow dreaming
Of kids faces always beaming from the joy ‘09 has in store.
Go forth with love ever more.