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Bethany's five year old poem:

Bethany is Five

Dear Bethany, my five year old
Growing up so fast, my little green-eyed beauty
Do you know how much I love you?
And how proud I am of you, little cutie?

Another year gone by in the life of my Beth
And you've changed so much, but still you are
As energetic as ever, with a personality that goes far

Five years old - now that's pretty cool
And you're getting ready for your first day of school
It's Kindergarten soon, Mrs. Silver will be there
To begin your schooling, a time to prepare
for a lifetime of learning -
(but let's not rush)

You've had a great year, it's been lots of fun
A great time with friends - do you know you're the one
that your friends look up to?
And a great group they are; Chelsea and Callie - "fornia"
and all the others, each with a cute little name to adore
(that I forget at the moment)
And as the years go by, I'm sure you'll have many more

And a devoted big sister you are to Blake
And I'd have to say that you keep "Blake Awake"
with your giggles and smiles, hugs and squeezes
Though it unnerves us sometimes, I know that it pleases
the little guy to have your attention
You love him a lot, that goes without mention.

My brave little girl - when you slipped from the van
and broke your "toofies", man oh man
Though it hurt and you cried you bore it with poise
And I think the one making the most noise
about it was Mommy, who was somewhat distraught
And the next day at the doctors office certainly taught
us all how brave little Bethany is
You came through the procedure like a wiz
and didn't cry at all or raise a fuss
The docs were impressed, and that's just what they told us
And speaking of heart, girlfriend, that's what you've got
In soccer this year you were so hot
On the team you showed such a coachable spirit
And each week at the game, we were sure to hear it
"Go Bethany Go" as you ran kicking the ball
(Although which direction you were pointed
sometimes we couldn't tell at all)
It was a great season, and we think you're the reason
that it was so fun

And now you go to "big church" each week
And at times you'll raise your voice to speak
a correction or rebuke to poor Doctor Wright
If he ever says something that to you seems trite
You've done so well, and all the while
We know that your listening and learning because
We can begin to see God's hand on your heart
And we can see in your life that your making a start
those first steps towards Jesus, as you sing Him a song
with sweet voice
or pray a little prayer that, given the choice,
is a masterpiece compared to many I've heard
Yes, I can see that a love for Him is being stirred

Bethany, you are smart (and somewhat sly)
Telling a story with a gleam in your eye
"Is this really true?" I'll ask with a grin
"Of course it is, Daddy" and you launch in
to a complicated tale, (and, of course, it's TRUE!)
of the time that the clown and the dog and you
went to the circus, in Mama's back yard
and did lots of tricks, and the policeman came
and arrested the clown, and the dog (what's his name?)
"Oh, of course, his name is Jennica, oh, I mean, it is Sam"
"Now wait a minute, are you making this up little ma'am?"
"No Daddy, it's true!" you'll say with a giggle
and a spin and a jump and a cute little wiggle
"I know it is, doll." I'll say with a smile
And we'll hear the whole story, though it might take awhile

Well, let me tell you a story my dear
A story that gets sweeter year by year
It's about a little girl, Beth Beth is her name
She's my little sweetie, my little flame
And I love to be with her, and watch her cavort
As we play games (usually of the "chase me" sort!)
She says she doesn't want a hug and a kiss
But I'm sorry, when I catch up with my little miss
I just can't resist - and amidst squeals of laughter
I claim my prize, a kiss on the cheek
and some tickles too - followed by a hug
and I hope she knows,
that whatever she does and wherever she goes
She has my heart and my prayers and my love
forever and ever and ever
Now that's the story I've been thinking of
And the best part is - It's TRUE!

I Love you,

Daddy

August 8, 1998