I don’t remember much from the early years
Mostly from pictures or what I was told
Memories are much more vivid and clear
When the heart is warm, when it hasn’t grown cold

I can see our front porch swing
I smell red bud blossoms in the air
Life was so much simpler then
Growing up without a care

I remember Sunday Dinners
Every weekend after Church
Around Grandma’s kitchen table
Our entire family would converge

Often discussing the Pastor’s sermon
And how it should impact our life
Learning from our elders as we passed round
The bread and butter knife

I recall too, the Pastor’s visits
But for us kids, the only thing at stake
Was hanging round the table long enough
To sample Aunt Rada’s Strawberry Jam Cake

My mind’s eye see’s clover blossoms
I look at the ground where my Mom stares
Then bending down to pick it up, she gasps
“A four-leaf clover…would you look-a-there”!

We played simple games, finding images in the clouds
Hide and seek, kick ball and jack rocks
But we got just as much entertainment out of
Sliding on the hardwood floor in socks!

Visions of Sambo and Buffy
Our Tabby and Calico spring into view
The scent of Pine that engulfed Grandma’s house
Was it the Christmas Tree…or did Sambo pee – ew!

We donned rain boots, slickers and rain hats
Splashing and stomping in the puddles when it rained
Yes, these simple things to you may sound boring
Or to some even quite insane

But we had family, we had friends
I remember saying “We’re rich”!
When Mom let the girls hang love beads
Over our bedroom door in ’76

There were also times of discipline
So we knew NOT to cross the line
And if we ever did we could expect
A firm spanking on our behind!

I remember building forts out of boxes
Making tents from sheets hung on the clothes-line
This was what we called “down-to-earth” fun
And it didn’t cost a dime!

I can taste the glue from pasting trading “green stamps”
As we helped Mommy fill stacks of S&H Books
Redeeming them for all kinds of neat things
Even clothes-pin hooks

Saturday’s with Dad
Were teamed round the family car
Washing, scrubbing, waxing and buffing—
He kept the cleanest vehicle by far

I see my sisters swinging in the front porch swing
Time spent their was all about the songs
We’d sing and swing for hours on end
For the love of music–not for the applause

I think back to High School days and Basketball
To Cheerleading camp and Football games
My enthusiasm for those sports
Has never quite been the same

I’m mindful of those who led more charmed lives
Of those growing up in poverty too
With Family dynamics that weren’t very good
Could just as easily have been me or you

So I’m thankful for the love of my family
Without ALL of you I couldn’t imagine this life
A life filled with joy and contentment
Without too much adversity or strife

I’m thankful too that we are all still together
We can still call on each other–day or night
We are still making fond memories to share
In a future that still looks very bright

Author: Marie Fitts

Wife, Mom, Daughter, Sister, Aunt, Friend, Writer, Dog Lover, Grated in and Grateful, Child of the Most High God!

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