December 8, 2005 in Voices

Family shares sweet Christmas tale

The Spokesman-Review
Photo by Katie Youngren photo

Darrell Jones may have had visions of sugar plums dancing in his head last Christmas as his 6-year-old granddaughter, Katie Mae, looked on.
(Full-size photo)

Everything seemed so peaceful.

It was Christmas Eve 2004. Spokane resident Katie Youngren, a part-time STA bus driver and part-time poet, was relaxing at home with her visiting parents, Darrell and Kathy Jones.

Darrell Jones, who runs the Donut Parade on North Hamilton Street, was still wearing his work clothes. He’d had a long day making doughnuts. He sat down in a rocking chair for a snooze, surrounded by his loving family.

At his feet dozed a golden retriever named George.

Then George lifted his head. He smelled something. It was frosting. It was … doughnut frosting. Darrell Jones’ shoelaces were slathered with the stuff from his day at the bakery.

Youngren immortalized the ensuing events in a poem:

Sugarplum Shoelaces

‘Twas the eve before Christmas

As we sat with my folks

Sharing Christmas memories

By the fireplace, well-stoked.

Our beloved pup George

Sitting at Grandpa’s feet

Had picked up a scent

So yummy and sweet.

Grandpa made doughnuts

And other sweet treats

And sometimes the frosting

Dripped onto his feets.

And George, whose nose

Was like a retriever’s

Was one of the best

Of perceptive perceivers.

So, he started to lick

Upon Grandpa’s shoelaces

With nary a notice

From anyone’s faces,

Enjoying a treat like

He never had known.

Even better than that

Of a juicy steak bone.

Alas, as festivities

Came to a close,

And up from the rocking chair

Grandpa arose,

He noticed his shoes

Had become a bit loose

And the laces resembled

A shredded up noose!

As we all stared in wonder

At the curious sight,

George sat licking his chops

With delicious delight.

Uproarious laughter then

Filled the whole house

Stirring the neighbors

(and even their mouse),

Adding yet one more memory

To our Christmas past list

For our future gatherings

around Yuletide bliss.

As for Christmas gift-giving

Our dear George surely knows

The best presents don’t come

Wrapped in ribbons and bows.

‘Tis the love and togetherness

Of family and friends,

And good news that in heaven

Our gatherings won’t end.

Yes, George truly loved

Sitting at Grandpa’s feet,

The company, and of course,

His heavenly treat,

For no kibble, no cake,

No cookie replaces

Grandpa’s delectable

Sugarplum laces.

Katie Youngren

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