Wedding Anniversary

This picture of my grandparents was taken on my wedding day, in May 1997, a week before their 55th wedding anniversary.

June 6, 2011
My grandparents wedding anniversary
Would have been 69 years today
Grandma smiles from heaven
Grandpa will join her there soon
He's ready to go when the day comes
He's fought off death since 9 months old
The doctors didn't think he'd make it
God had a plan for him
For each of his descendants too
Three children
Five grandchildren
Ten great grandchildren
His strongest legacy
The Line Continued
He's held each of us as babies
He loves us as we are
We know without hearing the words
Look for the twinkle in his eye
He'll growl at you with a grin
It's a literal growl too
He signs his e-mails, "Gr."
I reply, "Dear Grrrrrrrr,"
Feels right
Suits him
A Grizzly Bear of a Man

He's moved mountains in his lifetime
More than John Henry ever did
He knows the Power of the Pen
He's used it well
Speak up and say your piece
Don't leave a job undone
Or worse, do a shoddy job
Take your time
Do it right the first time
That's The Thompson Way
High Standards In All Things
Don't reach the bar
Exceed It
Aim Higher
Beyond the Stars
You can be anything you want to be

They saved their pennies
They went without
They worked hard
They invested wisely
They provided for their family
Even when their children were grown
They didn't stop but kept on giving
From The Rainy Day Fund
That was overflowing
College is paid for
Life insurance too
Help for house down payment
Appreciated through and through

It's the people that make
the place so special
The Home Place
My Heart Home
Evergreen Heights
atop the bluff
overlooking the Mighty Mississippi
"Grandpa's River"
Yes.
It is.
He's lived alongside it
His whole life
From 9 months old to 95
He's still alive and kickin'
He left her banks for just awhile
to fight a war in Europe
World War II
Nasty business
He trained and led a group of men
Better soldiers for having known him
Sergeant Thompson
"Tiger" to some
Wounded but survived
Walked again
Served his country
Came Home to his wife and daughter
Worked hard
Always working
Music is his "fun"
Writing too
Poetry and prose
He's writing still
Creative juices flowing
A storyteller at heart
Like his mother
And his uncle
His daughter too
A long line of writers
Now I join them


These Evergreen Trees line the road that runs alongside the alfalfa field. They've been there for many many years.


My sister would always say, "There's Grandpa's River" as we rounded the bend and The Mighty Mississippi first came into view. Grandpa's River. So true.


A fall view from atop the bluff looking out towards the Mississippi below taken in November 2010.


The Big Brown House. Also the title of a poem by my grandfather that I love dearly.


The Writer At Work. I took this picture of my Grandfather tweaking his latest story from the seat where I was reading his other recent work in March 2011. He's writing still. Poems. Stories. Preserving History of the Area. Always working. Words flowing. Keys tapping. There are more stories to tell.

As soon as I wrote the date, "6-6-11", at the top of my journal page I remembered the significance of the day. June 6th will ALWAYS be My Grandparent's Wedding Anniversary. For as long as I live. The inscription inside my grandma's wedding band read, "REJ to EAT 6-6-42". It cost $10. Grandpa never had one. It was wartime. 50 years later, she lost it, digging in her garden. He offered to buy her another ring. She declined. They celebrated 63 anniversaries together before her death in May 2006, just a month shy of their 64th. I remember the parties for their 40th, 50th and 60th along the way.

My grandfather is A Teacher At Heart. He's the one who taught me to add a note with Context at the end of my poems. He adds History Lessons to his endnotes as well. In honor of that tradition, here is a link for more information on John Henry, a man best known for his power and might at swinging a hammer tunneling through the mountains of West Virginia for the railroad.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Henry_(folklore)

The Highlight Of My Day is this note I received via e-mail from my Grandpa, in response to my poem, "In the Smokies":
"It looks like you have inherited the family talent, and also the urge to transfer your thoughts to paper. In this you are fortunate, as the two do not always go together.
Writing is very satisfying, at least it has been to me.
Love, Gr."

THAT says it best.


This photo shows some of the books written by Erwin A. Thompson. There are many more…

"In the Smokies"
http://my.opera.com/jbaird/blog/2011/06/14/in-the-smokies

To learn more about my grandfather's service in WWII read, β€œThe Hardest Decision I Ever Had to Make,” written by Erwin A. Thompson and posted by my aunt, Janet Riehl, at http://www.riehlife.com.
http://www.riehlife.com/2011/06/06/the-hardest-decision-i-ever-had-to-make-by-erwin-a-thompson-wwii-hero-who-to-choose-for-a-dangerous-night-patrol-and-how-to-get-back-alive/

Β© 2011, Janean Baird Turquoise Tangles

Advertisements

33 thoughts on “Wedding Anniversary

  1. woww..ur grandpa and grandma ,they s so cute..marry again ?? For the love and live long time…ur family,ur grandpa and u r writer ?? And he is erwin4 thompson. ??I love poem and trying to writing but it not good :p

  2. Dear Bohemian Charm, They were an amazing team at so many things that less ambitious people would never attempt. They didn't shirk and tackled 'em head on. Time and time again. Yes, my grandfather is Erwin A. Thompson. He's often featured at http://www.Riehlife.com as a guest blogger and through stories and poem written by my aunt, Janet Riehl. Poetry is new to me. I've written more in the past few months that in all the years that came before. It's been a surprise. In hindsight, it's been there all along. Simmering under the surface. Witing for me to realize it was there. ~ Janean

  3. BohemianCharm

    :eyes: family writer !!I will visit that website…Here *i live in Thailand*i wrote it just for my self and it was thai language and trying to writing in english language here opera in the first time for meit still not good for me..I like ur writing ,and ur thought when u wrote it.. I like to read abt life poem,poetry or life stories …for hit my consciousness..or provoke thought for living life…:)

  4. Dear Bohemian Charm,Thailand. Wow! Thank you for your note in English and for reading what I've written at My Opera. It's still new to me. Being here. Writing in the open. For All To See. I've written letters, personal and professional e-mails and advertising copy for years. My writing at Turquoise Tangles is closest to the letters I've written to family and friends – because they are written from the heart. Riehlife has strong ties to Africa. My aunt spent several years serving in the Peace Corps there in the 1970's. The dress my grandmother is wearing in the picture above is from the trips she and my grandfather took to Africa to visit their youngest daughter as she worked there. ~ Janean

  5. i like turquoise ..*wt ever hav teal n blue color i like it all*:Dafrica its a nice place…i would like to tour safari once time in life..lolur aunt is daughter youngest of them ?? Ur grandfather n grandmom looks like they r strong still hav a good health..thats so good…For my grandpa n grandmom deid last year…:(

  6. Dear Bohemian Charm,I like turquoise, teal and peacock blue very much – they are all soothing shades of blue-green that make me happy in all forms – sky, water, clothing, paper, jewelry and so many more…My grandparents had three children – girl, boy, girl. I'm their son's oldest girl. My aunt is their youngest girl. The picture at the top of them together was taken 14 years ago. Strong describes them both well. My grandmother died in 2006. I wrote a post titled, "May Day" that talks a little bit about her passing. http://my.opera.com/jbaird/blog/2011/05/02/may-dayIt's hard to go on after the loss of a loved one. Grandparents are so special too. I've found she's still with me. Her wisdom. Her strength. Her love. There is comfort in that and in the lessons she taught me and the ones I'm fully understanding now, as a woman of nearly 40, that I didn't grasp as a teenage girl. ~ Janean

  7. Anonymous writes:Janean,Love the poem, the post, and your conversation with "Bohemian Charm."Love the pictures–especially of The Pine Rows and Pop At His Computer (so recent!) I think the river picture shows the corner of Scotch Jimmy's Island.For fans of my father/your grandfather I've been featuring "Pop on Monday." Also, in the search box at the top right, just type in Erwin A. Thompson and most of his archive will come up.Affectionately,Aunt Janet

  8. Aunt Janet,Glad you enjoyed the pictures as well as the words at this post. It's a personal one for both of us. (I sort of snuck the most recent picture of The Writer At Work.) I wanted to tie in to your June 6, 2011 post for sure and am glad you mentioned your feature, "Pop on Monday." Love, Janean

  9. hi jenean..We r love teal its a same..yes blue+green..it make me think of the clean sea n sky when the weather cheerful…it made my mind good n forget someting distrub me..:)my grandparents they r had many sons n daughters.So we r a big ralation..For my family i hav 2sis n 1bro n me youngest..Cuz im youngest it made me was a way ward person a bit..lolyep..they r had lived long time ,they r hav experinces to teach us…n we also,we r old n keeping experiences for then we will do it to our childs ,our grandchilds in the next future like them did it..

  10. Dear Bohemian Charm,Here is a poem I wrote, with a turquoise sea and bright blue sky on a calm day, that you may enjoy. It's called, "Untangled".http://my.opera.com/jbaird/blog/untangledI am the oldest of three children. I have a brother and a sister too. Yes, I am thankful for the lessons they taught us and the experiences they had and have shared with us as we go about our own Life's Journey. Grandparents, grandchildren, our own children – it's All About Future Generations. ~ Janean

  11. yep…:)i hav some prob with browers mobile,some page cant open n my blog also.Bt i promise i will visit that ur blog soon..:)

  12. The Writer At Work.

    My apologies that I have only time to scan through it… What software does he use to write? I don't recognise it.And with software, I don't mean where he gets his inspiration; I mean the computer kind… πŸ™‚

  13. Originally posted by bentrein:

    The Writer At Work.

    My apologies that I have only time to scan through it… What software does he use to write? I don't recognise it.
    And with software, I don't mean where he gets his inspiration; I mean the computer kind… πŸ™‚

    Ben, I think he uses MS Word, but I'll have to ask him. Cool Grandpa that he is, he's email savvy, even at 95 and 11/12. Due to his failing eyesight, a vexing frustration for sure, the font is large and the background color is adjusted, to make it easier for him to proofread while he works. I will get back to you, after confirmation. ~ Janean

  14. Ah, everything set to high-contrast. Yes, that could be it… Some old folk are awesome! I work with young folk that are worse than some old folk when it comes to learning new digital things. I had a colleague switching on the display of a computer, and saying: "Now I turned the computer on," and then was wondering where the mouse was…

  15. Originally posted by bentrein:

    Ah, everything set to high-contrast. Yes, that could be it… Some old folk are awesome! I work with young folk that are worse than some old folk when it comes to learning new digital things. I had a colleague switching on the display of a computer, and saying: "Now I turned the computer on," and then was wondering where the mouse was…

    My grandfather definitely falls into the "Awesome Old Folk" category! He's a marvel and inspiration still. Computers are such a part of our daily lives it is startling to realize some people have resisted their lure and benefits, and remain oblivious to their charms. i have to deliberately unplug. Literally and figuratively. Some days I do better than others…

  16. Originally posted by jbaird:

    i have to deliberately unplug. Literally and figuratively.

    Amen – you and me both. I do sometimes travel to the south of Thailand – on purpose. To dedigitalize!

  17. Originally posted by bentrein:

    Originally posted by jbaird:

    i have to deliberately unplug. Literally and figuratively.

    Amen – you and me both. I do sometimes travel to the south of Thailand – on purpose. To dedigitalize!

    Sometimes I just leave my cell phone off, my laptop too and set my e-mail to auto respond with:
    I am Living Offline today.
    Call if you need me.
    I may answer.
    Otherwise, please be patient and know I'll reply later.
    I always do.
    ~ Janean

  18. That is a useful auto-reply. Once the floods hit here, I'll be saying: "I'm living Offline this month." :D:P

  19. Originally posted by bentrein:

    That is a useful auto-reply. Once the floods hit here, I'll be saying: "I'm living Offline this month." :D:P

    Ack! May the flood waters stay at bay. We'd miss your voice here at Opera too much if you're offline for a month. It's amazing how much havoc water can wreak when it arrives in large enough quantities.

  20. It was 1995, when my geography teacher said: "We may do a lot of harm, but nature always wins" when we were discussing the environment. Seeing these waters, I know he was right.

  21. Originally posted by bentrein:

    It was 1995, when my geography teacher said: "We may do a lot of harm, but nature always wins" when we were discussing the environment. Seeing these waters, I know he was right.

    Wise Teacher of yours, and Good Student to remember. Nature has a lot of weapons to choose from. From your most recent post sounds like you're the calm in the storm, keeping a level head. Your family and friends are lucky to have you, saving bottles to refill with clean drinking water and setting aside provisions on the top floor of your house. Wish there was a big drain somewhere that just needed the rubber stopper pulled out, so the flood waters had somewhere to go besides rising higher. http://my.opera.com/bentrein/blog/2011/10/20/rain-6-flood-in-thailand-2011

  22. neat picture and post, so sweet

  23. Originally posted by studio41:

    neat picture and post, so sweet

    Thank you, Jill. Right now my Grandma's iris are blooming alongside my house.My Grandpa chose some colorful varieties from their gardens and sent them in a five gallon bucket for replanting. I have her daylilies, blue hosta, surprise lilies a.k.a. naked ladies, and peonies too. How I love having pieces of her once magnificent gardens in my humble yard that's mostly grass with a swing set. Love,Janean

  24. sounds just lovely! post pictures sometime if you feel you can.

  25. Originally posted by studio41:

    sounds just lovely! post pictures sometime if you feel you can.

    As luck would have it, I HAVE taken some yard/garden in bloom photos recently.Will work on adding them here just so. Thank you for the encouragement, Jill. ~ Janean

  26. you bet πŸ™‚

  27. You're good for me. πŸ™‚

  28. aw, you are sweet. thanks, Janean. I say the same to you!

  29. We're stronger together, Jill.Works for me! πŸ™‚

  30. derWandersmann

    Originally posted by jbaird:

    My sister would always say, "There's Grandpa's River" as we rounded the bend and The Mighty Mississippi first came into view.

    A similar expression was common in my family as we would come across the island to the main channel, and we would see a dissipating cloud of smoke from a passing freighter as it rose above the line of trees … "There's Grandpappy, smoking his pipe!"The island, incidentally, is Harsens Island, in the St. Clair River delta, thus making it a part of the Great Lakes system. The main channel, used for shipping, is also the International Boundary between the US and Canada. Far from being "Mighty", as the Mississippi, it is relatively anemic, being only about a third of a mile wide.

  31. Originally posted by jbaird:

    We're stronger together, Jill.Works for me!

    :heart: :coffee:

  32. Originally posted by studio41:

    :heart: :coffee:

    Hearts and coffee toast to you too, Jill! πŸ™‚

  33. Originally posted by derWandersmann:

    A similar expression was common in my family as we would come across the island to the main channel, and we would see a dissipating cloud of smoke from a passing freighter as it rose above the line of trees … "There's Grandpappy, smoking his pipe!"

    What a fun memory, dW!
    I can so picture it too.
    Thank you for sharing it here, along with the geography of the island location.
    The Great Lakes are amazing.
    We went to a neat museum in Milwaukee, WI, called Discovery World, that did a lot of teaching about the Great Lakes ecosystem.
    My Grandma Thompson was a Biology major and school teacher.
    That was always my favorite of the sciences too.
    Of course, I didn't know that was her college major until years after I'd finished college myself.
    ~ Janean

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s