Jolly Christmas Eve …


‘Tis the day before Christmas and both Jolly and I have much to accomplish … and little good cheer to share.  We did, however, bake you cookies!  In lieu of my usual funny stories, and as a nod to Christmas Eve, I bring you a timeless classic …

Night Before Christmas‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;xmas-1The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
And mamma in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled down for a long winter’s nap,xmas-2When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.xmas-3The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,xmas-4With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;xmas-5“Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! on Cupid! on, Donder and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!”

xmas-6.pngAs dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too.xmas-7And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my hand, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.xmas-8He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.xmas-9His eyes—how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;xmas-10The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook, when he laughed like a bowlful of jelly.xmas-11He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;xmas-12He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;xmas-13He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night.”xmas-14

Dr. Clement C. Moore, who wrote the poem, never expected that he would be remembered by it. If he expected to be famous at all as a writer, he thought it would be because of the Hebrew Dictionary that he wrote.

He was born in a house near Chelsea Square, New York City, in 1781; and he lived there all his life. It was a great big house, with fireplaces in it;—just the house to be living in on Christmas Eve.

Dr. Moore had children. He liked writing poetry for them even more than he liked writing a Hebrew Dictionary. He wrote a whole book of poems for them.

One year he wrote this poem, which we usually call “‘Twas the Night before Christmas,” to give to his children for a Christmas present. They read it just after they had hung up their stockings before one of the big fireplaces in their house. Afterward, they learned it, and sometimes recited it, just as other children learn it and recite it now.

It was printed in a newspaper. Then a magazine printed it, and after a time it was printed in the school readers. Later it was printed by itself, with pictures. Then it was translated into German, French, and many other languages. It was even made into “Braille”; which is the raised printing that blind children read with their fingers. Christmas

30 thoughts on “Jolly Christmas Eve …

  1. Benjamin is not here today, Christmas Eve is always spent with the “out-laws”! I would NEVER say that around Benjamin, or his Daddy. It is only shared amongst my Son, eldest Daughter and my naughty self! Benjamin and I have been reading an old book with this timeless story for weeks, the very same one that I read when my children were Santa believers too. I have always loved the provenance of this Christmas classic. Benjamin will be delighted that you remembered his juice, although he does prefer the juicebox as it comes with a straw. The cookies look yumalicious! I don’t know how you manage to do so many things in one day, but it is appreciated. I, too, am busy busy busy and probably will be up all night…who needs 4 1/2 hours of sleep anyway? A very, very Merriest Christmas to you and Jolly! Thank-you! P.S. I’d like to send you a photo of the Little Mister, if you could send me a way to contact you via my email address!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I had a feeling Benjamin might be otherwise occupied today, but I knew he would see it sooner or later. Sorry about the bottle of juice, but I ran out of juice boxes. 😉 If I had time or energy, I would change it, but I am devoid of both at the moment. My apologies. I would LOVE a picture. My email address is I hope you and your family have a joyous Christmas … and I surely hope Santa takes good care of young Benjamin! Merry Christmas, my friend!


  2. Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    ‘Tis the night before Christmas’ … some history on the poem!! … ‘Dr. Clement C. Moore, who wrote the poem, never expected that he would be remembered by it. If he expected to be famous at all as a writer, he thought it would be because of the Hebrew Dictionary that he wrote.’ …read post for more!!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I agree! I went to Hebrew classes every Saturday as a child, and do you know that the only word I remember is the one for ‘watermelon-head’! I studied Latin in high school and the only word I remember is agricola … farmer. What a waste, eh? Happy Holiday, my friend!


  3. OK, British question. Why the Minute Maid Apple Juice? And happy Christmas eve to you – I know, it may be our last if Turnip-head Trump carries on like this (I read your last post but too depressed to comment – so let’s sit back, relax and enjoy it. For tomorrow… Big hugs and merry wishes speeding over the Atlatic to you.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Ahhh … the Minute Maid apple juice is for a young (5-year-old) reader, Benjamin. His grandma, Ellen, is a regular reader and friend, and Benjamin always looks forward to my Jolly Monday posts, and if I forget his apple juice, he is less than happy! 😉 I am doing my best to enjoy this holiday, despite the chaos of the past few weeks … to some extent, I am succeeding, but not completely. However, tomorrow we will be sharing Christmas dinner with our Iraqi/Syrian friends, which is always a treat! It is truly a blending of cultures, with me cooking typical American cuisine (most years a turkey with all the trimmings, but this year, as I’m not feeling quite up to par, I’m making a beef roast with roasted veggies and homemade rolls) and them cooking Arabic cuisine, some of which I find delightful. So, it will be a good holiday. I hope you and the Professor have a joyous day also!!! Let us hope for a better year for both of our countries in 2019! Many hugs, dear Mary!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hope you had a good Christmas despite all your blogging commitments and That Wretched Man’s continued idiocy. (I have had another (groan) birthday since then with a short trip of 2 nights away hence the delay in my commenting.) Let’s hope 2019 is the year TWM gets his comeuppance and we get to share that pizza and wine! Hugs for you too! Mx

        Liked by 1 person

        • Happy Happy Birthday, dear Mary!!! 🎂 🎁🎁🎁 🎈 I hope you enjoyed both your trip and your birthday! And Christmas and now, the New Year. As for me, I’m rather glad the holidays are finished and we can return to … not ‘normal’, obviously, for we haven’t been there for a long time, but … routine. I like routine. I thrive on routine. I am not happy outside of it. I am strange … yes, I know it! And yes, my friend, let us hope for some improvements this year. It would be foolish to hope for the world to right itself, but I think a few things turning around isn’t too much to ask! And I will keep looking forward to that bottle of wine and pizza … someday! Hugs!!!

          Liked by 1 person

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