Monday, December 11, 2006


***Our Christmas gift in 2002***
This was taken on a playground in Denver, Colorado, where we went to get him

Santa and boys Christmas 2004. The pic above is Uncle Lee Lee and #1 son Christmas 2001. My brother became Uncle Lee Lee, we don't know why. #1 son named him that when he was 20 months old. His name's Dan. This is one of my favorite shots, and one of #1 son's favorite spots to be.


My sister in law, the very one that kvetched last week about my Christmas shopping being completed at such an early date, is the life of the Christmas eve party for handsome husband's family. My boys have googlezillion family traditions they cherish but one of the most fun is when Aunt Donna grabs them along with all their cousins and makes them her cohorts in crime as she recites 'Twas the Night Before Christmas', right just exactly pre prior to immediately before present opening time. Aunt Donna's no dummy. You get complete cooperation . . . . before. . . . gift opening time.

Aunt Donna is a master storyteller and a great southern writer. The talent in this family that my husband gave me is most amazing and worthy of a blog entry of its own, and lest I stray too far from my original story here, I'll leave that subject and go back to 'Twas the Night Before Christmas' and Aunt Donna and the Cousins. Ayter-lay on the ahlent-tay *wink* *wink*. Another day.

Now then where was I...... oh yeah. So several years ago, my kids were about ohhhhhh six and 22 months, and it's Christmas Eve, and Aunt Donna (as always) has procured some sort of fabulously silly headgear for she and the cousins to wear while relating their story. Then she passes out candy canes to each. Jingle bells maybe, things just keep coming out of a bag with Aunt Donna for the kids to wear or hold so I get the years confused unless I look at a pic. Anyway the picture can't get any more perfect - cause you KNOW these children are the most beautiful in the world already, and here they stand between the fireplace and the Christmas tree, pretty as a picture, ready to recite a Christmas poem that the older ones at least almost know by heart, they've been doing it for so many years with their Aunt. So here we go:

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
in hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there.


The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
while visions of sugar plums danced in their heads.
And Mama in her 'kerchief, and I in my cap,
had just settled our brains for a long winter's nap.


When out on the roof there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
tore open the shutter, and threw up the sash.


The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
gave the lustre of midday to objects below,
when, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
but a miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer.


With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than eagles, his coursers they came,
and he whistled and shouted and called them by name:

"Now Dasher! Now Dancer!
Now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! On, Cupid!
On, Donner and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch!
To the top of the wall!
Now dash away! Dash away!
Dash away all!"


As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
when they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky
so up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
with the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too.


And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
the prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head and was turning around,
down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.


He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
and his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.
A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
and he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.


His eyes--how they twinkled! His dimples, how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
and the beard on his chin was as white as the snow.
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
and the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
that shook when he laughed, like a bowl full of jelly.


He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
and I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself.
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head
soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.


He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
and filled all the stockings, then turned with a jerk.
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
and giving a nod, up the chimney he rose.


He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, 'ere he drove out of sight,

"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!"


OKAY. It's a LONNNNNNNNNNG poem, and in the particular verse that begins with AS DRY LEAVES THAT BEFORE THE WILD HURRICANE FLY, (you'll notice that's six verses in - seven if you count the calling of the reindeer), Aunt Donna's tongue got twisted in the MOST unfortunate spot and the house-top became the whore house.

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
when they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky
so up to the whore house the coursers they flew,
with the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too.


Makes you wonder about the kinda toys, doan it. Hmm.

Aaaaaaaanyhoosie, that's a favorite Christmas memory for the adults. Went right over the kids' heads, but I'm looking forward to the day my boys are old enough to share it with them.



deborah said...

I will not read "Twas the night before Christmas" ever again without thinking of Aunt Donna!!!

I make it a point to buy for friends that have babies one of the gifts I get for them is "Twas the night before Christmas". It was one of my very favorite as a child, yes I still remember whoever reading it to me. And it is such a magical story that all children should hear. I especially like to look at the little darlings faces when it is read to them....sweet!!!

deborah said...

sumpin is wrong and it is logging in as my sister WTH.....doodles