Five Hats I’ve Worn…

It’s time for Five on Friday with Amy at Love Made My Home and Friday’s Fave Five with Susanne at Living to Tell the Story.

I’m sharing five of the hats I’ve worn and continue to wear over the years. These are the earlier years before marriage.

Daughter to Moisi and Nadia Bagdanov, Russian immigrants whose families escaped out of Russia into Persia and immigrated to the U.S. after WWII.

Younger sister to Kathy, Vera and Fred.

Black and Whites1

Kathy, my mom, me in front of her, Fred and Vera. I was the baby of the family for 7 years before the siblings doubled!


Fred, my Pop, me, Kathy and Vera.

Older sister to Tim, Steve, Lana and Leonard (twins).

Student in the Montebello Unified School District. Schools I attended were Montebello Gardens, Fremont Elementary, Montebello Junior high and Montebello high school. I grew up in suburbs east of Los Angeles with many Hispanics and a fair share of Russian, Armenian and Jewish families, too. A great melting pot.

img332Mrs. Nicolaus my 1st and 2nd grade teacher was one of a handful of my teachers that I knew were fond of me. I was a voracious reader and she recommended that I be skipped from 2nd grade to 3rd grade. (Top Row left with my curly β€œdo”)

Junior High1Graduate: Junior high graduation with my little maternal babushka (grandmother) and High School graduation with my little babushka.

Pictures15College graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Home Economics and a Elementary teaching credential. On the left me and dear before we were married and on the right me and my brother Fred. We graduated the same year and from the same college.

So daughter, sister, student, graduate and number five for this week is part-time employee. All through the end of my senior year of high school and through college I worked part time to save and pay for my college education. My parents could not afford to pay for my college education.

img441This photo is from the parts department of Montgomery Ward in Rosemead, California. I worked here during the years I attended Cal-State Los Angeles my last 4 years of college. College was 5 years for me as I had an extra year to earn my teaching credential. My first year of college I worked as a Teacher’s Assistant in the Russian department at the University of Redlands. In my high school years I worked as an office assistant at Link-Belt in Montebello. See the huge Icthus I’m wearing? I was never shy about the fact that Jesus Christ was and is my Savior. This was also the early 70’s when the Jesus movement was going strong in Southern California.

Thanking God today for how he’s been with me all these years leading and guiding and protecting me. All the way my Savior leads me…

About Ellen am a wife, mother, baba (grandmother) and a loyal friend. Jesus is my King and my hope is in my future with Him.

22 thoughts on “Five Hats I’ve Worn…

  1. Wonderful hats you’ve worn and I know that is not all of them! I am charmed by your parents’ yellow kitchen. Why, I have a yellow mug just like the ones they are using. (I used to have more, but now just the one… I don’t recall ever breaking any either.)

  2. What a wonderful look at your life! You were hard-working to put yourself through school and do a double major. Wow! And another hat is wife, and another is mother. I’m sure there are more, such as friend, author, etc.

  3. I love this post Ellen, learning about your background.
    Your parents were so brave coming to another country. The US was where all the immigrants wanted to be – opportunities and a new life.
    I imagine they told you all about their families in Russia, have you been there Ellen?
    If not I hope you get the chance to go one day.
    Enjoy your weekend.

    • Hi Shane, I haven’t been to Russia. My parents and some of my brothers have been back to the village my father grew up in. A journalist from Russia wrote out my dad’s story and we have it.

  4. I loved your walk down memory lane!! I am going to show your photos to my youngest….she is in her 4th year of Russian at her high school (she is a junior and getting 5 college credits this year and then 5 next year) she plans on applying to colleges here in the northeast that offer business and russian studies πŸ™‚ she LOVES russian..and of course the ballet she has been doing russian style for 13 years πŸ™‚ How fun…the Jesus movement!! I was a young teen when that started! I’m guessing you were also a Keith Green fan??

  5. Love this walk down memory lane – all these hats you wore before we met you and then you added one more hat to your collection – the Mennonite one!

  6. Pingback: Moisi Timothy Bagdanov (1923-2018) | The Happy Wonderer ~ ellen b.

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