The Years in Review

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Be sure to see the Bonus Pages for additional photos!

© Larry Gardner 2016

Larry, Marily and Warren

December 25, 2016
Maplewood, Minnesota

The Gardners

Christmas 2016

Warren, Marily and Larry

November 25, 2016
Bellbrook, Ohio

We’ve made it through another healthy lap around the sun,
Although we’re getting older, we still hope we’re far from done.
We’re still here in Wisconsin and our boy is far away
Up there in Minnesota like a grown up runaway.

This year was uneventful, as we had no major strife.
We both continue working and appreciating life.
Someday we might retire, but it seems that neither one
Of us are really ready to declare that we are done.

This summer we had house guests of the uninvited kind.
We wondered what the source was of the noises undefined
That emanated from around our fireplace as we tried
To have a peaceful morning with our coffee fireside.

Our first thoughts were of rodents, maybe squirrels or raccoons,
So noisy in the mornings and again in afternoons.
When we would make a sound, then their response was right away,
Like party time in Chimney Land was always underway.

We did our research thoroughly to find to our surprise
The wildlife we were living with and had to exorcise
Were chimney swifts whose status as protected species meant
They couldn’t be removed and so left me a malcontent.

So when they finally left we had a chimney sweep come out
To do a full inspection of the flue and carry out
A sweep to clear away all of the birdies’ residue
And add a hefty increase to his yearly revenue.

The house paint that the boys and I completed in ’01,
Was getting to the point where a revision needed done.
This time we had it done for us, and all we had to do
Was write a big fat check and have our house look like brand new.

Our house’s other systems had their upgrades coming due
So furnaces were changed out and the AC units, too.
We don’t have any worries that they’ll fail as time has passed,
And that’s because we’re now the age where these will be our last.

Our trips this year were limited to family holidays
That don’t come quite as often as we’d wish for nowadays.
We got to Minnesota for some weekends in the year
And an August week to make Grant’s old possessions disappear.

We all went down to Dayton for Thanksgiving and the spread
Of Laurie’s highly planned repast that left us overfed.
We got an early glimpse of Uncle Mikey’s Christmastide
And Warren brought his Lauren there to meet the Braden side.

My sister split the trips with me this year to Sanibel
For parents in their 90s who continue doing well.
I brought them back up north to spend the summer in the spring
And Lana drove them back this fall with all the stuff they bring.

Vacation time for Meemo was a week away from me,
In Florida with Jamie that was almost worry free.
A simple step out on the deck was safe, one might suppose,
Until she hit the screen door there and broke her dainty nose.

The nation had its moment in November when it said
The best way going forward and for us to move ahead
Was not what was expected when we went to make our choice,
Leaving some to cry and whine and beg and others to rejoice.


For Warren, his adventure was a Boundary Waters trip
To brush up on his portage skills and boating oarsmanship.
His friends and he were able to take all the storms could give
And fish and just appreciate the outdoor way to live.

So here we are in ’16, where we’re almost unconstrained,
We’re free to work or not to work, and pleased with what we’ve gained.
So far we still continue having fun at what we do
And in no hurry yet to see the day that we are through.

My thoughts keep coming back to just how fortunate are we
For who we’re with and who we love and what we’ve come to be.
We realize that after all we really did succeed.
We have no need to want because we have all that we need.

So thank you once again, dear readers, each and every year
For sharing in our ups and downs when Chronicles appear.
We always try to entertain, or even to amuse.
We’d love to hear from you, as well, so send us all your news.