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lived the Smith’s.  They had a ramshackle house with lots of animals scurrying about.  The chickens and sheep occasionally ran through the house on the way to the barn.  On the old weathered tree in the front yard was a swing made from a found bit of rope and some scrap wood.  Dad threatened several times to use it for heat in the winter, but true to his children’s protests he kept the swing there. 

The children walked several miles to school each day.  It was especially hard for little Betty as she was so small that every mile seemed like three.  She made it there every day and was rewarded with straight A’s on her report card.  Her big brother, Bobby, and her big sister, Elsie, tormented her sometimes as brothers and sisters tend to do.  She loved them still and looked up to them as a little sister should. 

Elsie sometimes jumped into battles that involved Betty as did Bobby.  They made the other children leave her alone and watched over and protected her. 

Their clothes were not the best, but their Mother kept them clean and mended.  They were able to dress in their best outfits on Sunday.  That was the day that the photographer from the big city came to town.  He posed them in the house and made them sit very still for what seemed like an eternity.  When he was finished and the photo came in the mail they marveled at the end result.  They had only seen themselves in a mirror previously, but that was only for a few minutes.  Now they had a look for all posterity. 

Their house was not filled with much money, but it was filled with a lot of love.  They were truly a family in every sense of the word as they worked together and they made their money by the sweat of their brows and the blisters on their hands.  Some might say they were poor, but they felt like the richest children on the earth as their Father and Mother made sure they knew they were loved. 

Today’s story brought to you by Nyquil and another thrifted photo.