Over the River and Through the Woods

Thanksgiving is a time for families to be together and thank God for everything. We play games and feast on fall food. God helps us in all our work. This year our family is very happy to be going to our grandparents house for Thanksgiving for the first time in years!

The first Thanksgiving in Plymouth among the Pilgrims and the Native Americans was different then today. Native Americans celebrated by dancing and singing. The Pilgrims celebrated by feasting.

Later celebrations of Thanksgiving included singing such as this poem that was written in the last century. This year we learned how to sing all of its verses:

sleighOver the river, and through the wood,
To Grandmother’s house we go;
the horse knows the way to carry the sleigh
through the white and drifted snow.

Over the river, and through the wood,
to Grandfather’s house away!
We would not stop for doll or top,
for ’tis Thanksgiving Day.

Over the river, and through the wood—
oh, how the wind does blow!
It stings the toes and bites the nose
as over the ground we go.

Over the river, and through the wood—
and straight through the barnyard gate,
We seem to go extremely slow,
it is so hard to wait!

Over the river, and through the wood—
When Grandmother sees us come,
She will say, “O, dear, the children are here,
bring a pie for everyone.”

Over the river, and through the wood—
now Grandmother’s cap I spy!
Hurrah for the fun! Is the pudding done?
Hurrah for the pumpkin pie!

Over the river, and through the wood,
with a clear blue winter sky,
The dogs do bark, and children hark,
as we go jingling by.

Over the river, and through the wood,
to have a first-rate play.
Hear the bells ring, “Ting-a-ling-ding!”,
Hurrah for Thanksgiving Day!

Over the river, and through the wood,
no matter for winds that blow;
Or if we get the sleigh upset
into a bank of snow

Over the river, and through the wood,
to see little John and Ann;
We will kiss them all, and play snow-ball
and stay as long as we can.

Over the river, and through the wood,
trot fast, my dapple-gray!
Spring over the ground like a hunting-hound!
For ’tis Thanksgiving Day.

churchOver the river, and through the wood,
Old Jowler hears our bells.
He shakes his pow, with a loud bow-wow,
and thus the news he tells.

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