The sun was shining bright through the kitchen window. It was going to be a beautiful day. Poor Mountain Mother was inside the log cabin, putting the freshly baked Valentine’s Day cookies in the cookie jar. She was very excited and jittery. Valentine’s Day only comes once a year and it is a time that she always spends with her family.
Poor Mountain Sister and Poor Mountain Brother were just on their way out the door to catch the school bus.
“Gee Poor Mountain Mother looks so happy and cheery this morning,” commented Poor Mountain Sister.
“I know,” said Poor Mountain Brother. “After all it is Valentine’s Day.”
“Yes,” said Poor Mountain Sister. “She always gets so excited on Valentine’s Day.”
“I know,” said Poor Mountain Brother, getting a puzzled look on his face. “I know.”
“Why do you look puzzled?” asked Poor Mountain Sister.
“Well,” said Poor Mountain Brother. “Poor Mountain Father didn’t look like he even remembered Valentine’s Day this morning.”
“True!” gasped Poor Mountain Sister. “You don’t think that he forgot all about it do you? He did seem to be pre-occupied.”
“He’s been pre-occupied for quite sometime now,” said Poor Mountain Sister. “I’m a little concerned about him. He’s putting a lot of extra hours in at the factory these days.”
“I know,” said Poor Mountain Brother. “I think we should stop by the factory before we go to school this morning. We have got to let him know that today is Valentine’s Day.”
“Good idea,” said Poor Mountain Sister. “That way it will give him time to pick something up for Poor Mountain Mother.”
The two Poor Mountain children got off the bus and headed directly to the factory where Poor Mountain Father worked. They had to hurry because they did not want to be late for school. They went straight into the office and spoke to the secretary there, Miss Watts.
“I’m sorry Poor Mountain children,” said Miss Watts when she found out the children wanted to speak to their father. “He just stepped into a meeting and he can’t be disturbed.”
“Okay,” said Poor Mountain Sister. “Can you give him this message for us? Can you please tell him that today is Valentine’s Day?”
Miss Watts looked a little puzzled but informed the children that she would pass the message on. However, once the children left to go back to school, Miss Watts was very busy the whole day and it totally slipped her mind to tell Poor Mountain Father.
Poor Mountain Mother had a wonderful meal all cooked. She spent all day in the kitchen and yet she still managed to look very beautiful. At dinner time, the children were getting very hungry and yet Poor Mountain Father was still not home from work. Poor Mountain Mother fed the children. Even by the time it was bed time, Poor Mountain Father was still not home. He ended up coming home really, really late that evening.
When Poor Mountain Father did come home, he ate his dinner in silence and then retired to the living room where he ended up falling asleep on the couch. He didn’t even wake up until the next morning.
Poor Mountain Mother was crushed. Poor Mountain Father never forgot Valentine’s Day, ever. That was their special time together as a family. However, she did know that Poor Mountain Father has been under a lot of stress lately and that he was working so many hours. Still though, she couldn’t help but be a little depressed about it. She sat down on the edge of the bed and started to cry.
Poor Mountain Father was on his way to take a shower when he heard someone sobbing. He was surprised when he found out it was Poor Mountain Mother.
“Dear,” said Poor Mountain Father, putting his arms gently around her. “What is wrong?”
“You forgot all about Valentine’s Day,” Poor Mountain Mother, sobbed.
Poor Mountain Father’s face turned ash white and his jaw dropped to the floor. He never forgot Valentine’s Day. Oh, it was no wonder Poor Mountain Mother was so upset.
“I’m so sorry,” said Poor Mountain Father. “I don’t know what came over me. It is just that I have been so busy at the factory.”
“I know,” sobbed Poor Mountain Mother.
“Listen,” said Poor Mountain Father. “You get yourself prettied up again by tonight because I’m going to take you out for a special dinner tonight.”
“Oh really!” cried Poor Mountain Mother.
“Yes,” said Poor Mountain Father. “However, you have to promise me that you will stop crying.”
“But these are happy tears now,” said Poor Mountain Mother.