Back to School

Can’t figure out why my head won’t stop spinning. Maybe it has something to do with…the kids are back to school. Beth is back to school. Retiring from the fire departmnent after 10 years (tough but the right decision as this point in my life after this crazy year). Soccer, football, dance, and scouts have all started back up. Pulled off organizing another successful scout rocket launch. Plus coaching soccer for Megan’s team. Wrapping up being a confirmation mentor this past year (yahoo Parker!). Working with another wish child (we reveal what her wish will be to her this coming Tuesday – with the help of a real life princess 🙂 ). Work is as crazy as always. Katherine and everyone else still on my mind a lot. Yah, maybe all that has something to do with my head spinning, huh?

We wrapped up July and August with a trip to Grand Marais with E & Wen (and family), visits from both sets of parents to MN, and then a quick visit by Kristin & Tom (and Big A) to MN for the state fair. Yummy cheese curds, buckets of fries, Sweet Martha’s cookies, cotton candy, juicy turkey sandwiches, milk, shakes, you name it – ugh, I’m still stuffed!

Grand Marais was cool. It was nice to go up with some good friends. It has been great to have people caring and looking out for us. It was supposed to be a different trip this year – that part of it was tough but part of the journey now. We had some great experiences with nature and I got up alone one morning to take in a beautiful, peaceful sunrise. That was E’s hope for the trip but the weather didn’t cooperate with him – the day after they left the sky was crystal clear and I enjoyed the sunrise and being alone at 5:30 a.m. on a huge lava formation by the great lake.

Beth and I are going to see Jackson Browne in concert next month. I really connected to some of his songs especially since March. “For a Dancer” is one such song that is hard but good for me to listen too. Come to find out that Jackson Browne’s wife committed suicide about the time this song came out many, many years ago (although I read that the song was written first). Crazy world. Here are those lyrics:

Keep a fire burning in your eye
Pay attention to the open sky
You never know what will be coming down
I don’t remember losing track of you
You were always dancing in and out of view
I must’ve always thought you’d be around
Always keeping things real by playing the clown
Now you’re nowhere to be found

I don’t know what happens when people die
Can’t seem to grasp it as hard as I try
It’s like a song playing right in my ear
That I can’t sing
I can’t help listening

I can’t help feeling stupid standing ’round
Crying as they ease you down
Cause I know that you’d rather we were dancing
Dancing our sorrow away
(Right on dancing)
No matter what fate chooses to play
(There’s nothing you can do about it anyway)

Just do the steps that you’ve been shown
By everyone you’ve ever known
Until the dance becomes your very own
No matter how close to yours another’s steps have grown
In the end there is one dance you’ll do alone

Keep a fire for the human race
And let your prayers go drifting into space
You never know will be coming down

Perhaps a better world is drawing near
And just as easily, it could all disappear
Along with whatever meaning you might have found
Don’t let the uncertainty turn you around
(The world keeps turning around and around)
Go on and make a joyful sound

Into a dancer you have grown
From a seed somebody else has thrown
Go on ahead and throw some seeds of your own
And somewhere between the time you arrive and the time you go
May lie a reason you were alive but you’ll never know

4 Responses to “Back to School”

  1. Dad and Grandpa T says:

    Thanks for the update – always enjoy them.

    Looks like things are back to normal for all of you – crazy as ever. Although you may miss it on one hand, retiring from the Fire Dept. was for the best and you gave them and enjoyed ten good years (Congratulations on your retirement). With everything else going on being on call is a level of uncertainty that you don’t need to have in the mix right now.

    Glad everyone’s first day back to school went well. Especially nice to hear things are getting off to a good start with Beth continuing her educational journey. From a personal point of view I’m especially excited as I have experienced the results of research done for MM. Hard to believe a year ago I was getting ready for my stem cell transplant. A lot has happened since then and I’m thankful for each day. I see the oncologist at Lebanon this Friday. Hope he is pleased with my progress. Some counts are still low, but it seems the every other day dose is more to my body’s liking.

    As usual, enjoyed the pictures from Grand Marais. So wish we could have been able to go and our plans for a family outing could have happened. We had talked to Katherine a number of times about going and know she was looking forward to it. Hopefully, she was there with all of you in spiirt. I know she was on your mind as you were there this year.

    Katherine has been on our minds a lot lately too. We are planning to walk on the 29th for the Samaritans. We saw a donation from your family and know you will be thinking of her that day. That will probably be a tough day, but we have to focus on the joy she brought to everyone. When mom and I visited her grave a few weeks ago there were weeds growing so Saturday when mom and I went to see Erik and the girls I went to her grave and worked a little. Not an easy time. It’s just so wrong, she and Erik should have been weeding and planting flowers and grass seed over me. Erik is looking into a headstone.

    I’ve listened to Jackson Browne on You Tube while reading the lyrics you provided. Very touching and appropriate. Speaking of lives being touched by suicide, I looked at pictures on the Samaritans website of groups that walked last year. I forget the numbers I’ve read, but looking at those pictures it’s easy to understand the hundreds of thousands they say are touched by someone’s suicide each year. Little did we know last year that we would be in one of the groups walking this year. Erik showed us the graphics of the shirt he made. It is nice and will be worn a lot as difficult as it may be.

    Where is the Jackson Browne concert? I can’t say I’m familiar with him, but mom knew who he was. I plan to look at more of this work on the computer. Wish I could have seen the rocket launch. Was that on the list? I know we didn’t get everything done that was on the list. Hope you got the walls finished that I started. Should have started that a little sooner so the mud would dry.

    Better close for now. It’s another beautiful day and I want to get out and enjoy it. I’m going to start with a walk with Casey who is patiently watching as I type this.

    Our best to all the students and to you in keeping up with all the activities. I’m sure the wish child will be happy tomorrow when she gets her wish. That must give you a great feeling when you see how happy they are.

  2. Decindra Parker says:

    I so love this web site you do. It is so nice to get to see you & your family. I justy love it. I had a great time seeing you and your vfamily this summer. Beth & you have a wonderful family. Kathrine has so been on my mind, savannah my daughter has been having very very bad stomach problems :(. I have ulcerative colitis boarded line crohns. It’s not an easy life. Savannah’s seems very differant from mine though, she is seeing a specailist. She called crying her eyes out last night about how much pain she was in ………….. I would have done anything for her to call katherine. I’m hoping to go to Boston this coming year to do the walk for chrons in Katherines honor. Mom got back from seeing grama T.Hoping to go to your parents house around Thanksgiving. Give Beth my best hope she is loving school with her fresh books and pens. Nothing better then a new text book. Miss you, thanks for the updates

  3. Brooks Thompson says:

    Hi Minnesota Thompsons,

    Well, dad said it all. He’s so good at putting his thoughts on paper. I know things are hectic for your family right now, but as the days become more routine, hopefully things will settle down a bit. You have wonderfully, capable children so make them more a part of helping around the house and getting things ready for the next day. They’ll thank you for making them more responsible people in a few years down the road. Miss you all so much. Keep in touch and lets skype soon. Love, Mom

  4. Dave says:

    Hey Cindy! Great to hear from you and thanks for the post! It’s so hard to get Katherine out of my mind – crazy that it has been 6 months now. I feel for you and Savannah – those stomach, etc problems impact all aspects of your life and are so tough to get through and understand. I hope things get better/controllable for both of you. I hope you can make it down there for the Crohn’s walk and also for Thanksgiving. We haven’t even thought as far ahead as Thanksgiving yet – Beth is practially pulling all-nighters to get caught up on studying but she is really enjoying the program! Take care – hello to all!

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