>> Monday, December 24, 2007

WOO HOO and we're outta here!!! Our sleigh is all packed with goodies and holiday cheer! Fueled for a LONG night's travel to Vancouver are our SIX (not eight) gas-saving cylin-DEERS!!! Oh SO silly, yes that would be me ... if only I could figure a way, I'd figure out a way to sneak into my daughter's via the chimney!!!

I have a SPECIAL poem to share by permission from Sharon (thank you Sharon!), aka Scrapat4914, that I read on her blog the other day. Many of us have had or still have family and friends deployed to the Middle East and I thought this a WONDERFUL way to pay tribute to ALL of our soldier's past, present and future for their courageous heroism.

THANK YOU for helping to keep me SAFE and warm at night, for allowing me to continue to live in a country with the FREEDOM to be me, to vote as I please, worship as I please, to LOVE whomever I please, to wear what I please, live where I please, work where I please, to have as many children as I please, and where I was brought up to say PLEASE, thank you and your welcome and to have respect for all! I could go on and on as I know y'all could too! My heart and thoughts are with each family and for those whom we are helping.

A Different Christmas Poem

The embers glowed softly, and in their dim light,
I gazed round the room and I cherished the sight.
My wife was asleep, her head on my chest,
My daughter beside me, angelic in rest.

Outside the snow fell, a blanket of white,
Transforming the yard to a winter delight.
The sparkling lights in the tree I believe,
Completed the magic that was Christmas Eve.

My eyelids were heavy, my breathing was deep,
Secure and surrounded by love I would sleep.
In perfect contentment, or so it would seem,
So I slumbered, perhaps I started to dream.

The sound wasn't loud, and it wasn't too near,
But I opened my eyes when it tickled my ear
Perhaps just a cough, I didn't quite know,
Then the sure sound of footsteps outside in the snow.

My soul gave a tremble, I struggled to hear,
And I crept to the door just to see who was near.
Standing out in the cold and the dark of the night,
A lone figure stood, his face weary and tight.

A soldier, I puzzled, some twenty years old,
Perhaps a Marine, huddled here in the cold.
Alone in the dark, he looked up and smiled,
Standing watch over me, and my wife and my child.

"What are you doing?" I asked without fear,
"Come in this moment, it's freezing out here!
Put down your pack, brush the snow from your sleeve,
You should be at home on a cold Christmas Eve!"

For barely a moment I saw his eyes shift,
Away from the cold and the snow blown in drifts..
To the window that danced with a warm fire's light
Then he sighed and he said "Its really all right,

I'm out here by choice. I'm here every night.
So that your family can sleep without fright.
It's my duty to stand at the front of the line,
That separates you from the darkest of times.

No one had to ask or beg or implore me,
I'm proud to stand here like my fathers before me.
My Gramps died at 'Pearl on a day in December,"
Then he sighed, "That's a Christmas 'Gram always remembers"

My dad stood his watch in the jungles of 'Nam',
And now it is my turn and so, here I am.
I've not seen my own son in more than a while,
But my wife sends me pictures, he's sure got her smile.

Then he bent and he carefully pulled from his bag,
The red, white, and blue... an American flag.
I can live through the cold and the being alone,
Away from my family, my house and my home.

I can stand at my post through the rain and the sleet,
I can sleep in a foxhole with little to eat.
I can carry the weight of killing another,
Or lay down my life with my sister and brother..

Who stand at the front against any and all,
To ensure for all time that this flag will not fall."
"So go back inside," he said, "harbor no fright,
Your family is waiting and I'll be all right."

"But isn't there something I can do, at the least,
"Give you money," I asked, "or prepare you a feast?
It seems all too little for all that you've done,
For being away from your wife and your son."
Then his eye welled a tear that held no regret,
"Just tell us you love us, and never forget.
To fight for our rights back at home while we're gone,
To stand your own watch, no matter how long.
For when we come home, either standing or dead,
To know you remember we fought and we bled.
Is payment enough, and with that we will trust,
That we mattered to you as you mattered to us."

Wishing you ALL, each and every one of you who do celebrate, the MOST glorious Christmas day with your loved ones.

Lots of love and BIG, BIG hugs,

P.S. I apologize for the casual packaging on the brag book pages - my family is patiently awaiting me to finish so that we can, "hit the road Jack"!!! ROFL!!!

I will miss you and will visit my blog as often as I am able. I have added a small image of *Win'tree Weather* in the right-hand column so that you can click the link each day to download while I am away! I hope I am not forgetting anything!!! If I haven't, it is a MIRACLE!!!

I have a total of FOUR brag book pages to upload starting tonight and until I come back, at which time I will complete the set for you!!!


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