Photobucket is holding all my photos hostage from me that I added to their site from 2007 and beyond. When I got to 99% full of my free photo storage space they wanted me to pay for more space. I stopped adding photos to the site. I chose not to pay for more storage and now they have deleted all my photos from my blog posts. I am more than miffed because to free my photos from their grasp they want me to pay $$ a year. What a bother. I worked all day on Friday trying to fix some of my many many posts. I’ve also had to restore many posts on the Mennonite Girls Can Cook. I’ve got miles to go before my posts are restored.
Addy is a bit concerned, too. I’m so glad that not one of Addy’s photos is stored at Photobucket!
When our daughter Katie was in fourth grade she was put into a Gifted program which was housed in a different school from our neighborhood school. After a few months in this program we started noticing some troubling patterns and angry outbursts from her. She did not want to go to school and wasn’t interested in doing any homework. She finally opened up to us and told us about her experiences on the playground from the other “gifted” kids. We decided the best thing to do was to pull her out of the program and try to repair the damage by homeschooling her. This was one of our best parenting decisions and moves. When we told her teacher and the administration we were pulling her out they were shocked and told us we were making a mistake. They felt this program was giving Katie some options she wouldn’t get in a regular classroom or at home. We just smiled and walked away. We home schooled for 4th, 5th and 6th grade and then Katie decided she’d like to try public school again entering junior high/7th grade. This is something I wrote in 1996 after hearing how Katie was treated and after watching how she was shunned at the school bus stop.
She Was a Happy Girl
She was gentle and kind
She liked to pretend and giggle and dream
Her dreams became playground games
She pranced and danced and was a tree fairy
Her imagination smiled inside her head
She was a happy girl
Other children on the playground couldn’t figure her out
She wasn’t like them
She was different in their eyes
Because of her uncommon ways they began to taunt her
She became the playground plague
She was called the germ
No one should touch the germ
or play with the germ
because they would become a germ, too.
She was a happy girl
but their thoughts and their actions
turned her into a sad and angry girl
She couldn’t understand and couldn’t change
what the playground had made her
She was a happy girl
I’m happy and thankful to God that Katie thrived being home schooled and when she re-entered the public school system she continued to do well. She enjoyed drama and art and had some great teachers who recognized her talents and abilities. She made some good friendships along the way at school and at church. She had very impressive SAT scores. She also was a National Merit Scholar. She completed college and now is standing by her husband as he completes his college degree in Aeronautical Engineering. He had a late start because of serving as a U.S. Marine. She still doesn’t fit in anyone’s mold. She is uniquely Katie. That’s one of the trees on one of her elementary playgrounds that she pretended she was a fairy in.
The Lord bless you and keep you;
the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you;
the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.
I found this as we sorted through lots and lots of paperwork and decided to put it on my blog as a reminder of how far we have come and how we were carried through by God’s love and grace in difficult times. There are some other things I might share from time to time. Peace be with you and yours.
Back in the Los Angeles area Heidi’s family and mine attended Bethany Baptist Russian Church in L.A. and we became the best of friends. This friendship continues to this day. In fact, all these friendships that I show here are still intact.
We went on an a trip together in the summer of 1970 to Michigan and New Jersey with side trips to Buffalo (Niagara Falls), New York City, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Washington D.C. This was the first time I flew in an airplane.
These are my and Heidi’s Russian friends from Buffalo, New York and San Francisco. None of us went to Stanford although I did apply to go there but was not accepted. The photo above was taken on the day of the Rose Parade in Pasadena. Stanford was playing someone in the Rose Bowl Game. This was either January 1st, 1971 or 1972.
While in college Jeaneen and I met in our Home Economics classes and a new friendship was started. I introduced Jeaneen to my cousin Jim and they ended up getting married. We’ve had many great times together through the years. After marriage the four of us continued our friendship. We both had homes in Huntington Beach and we attended the same church while we lived in H.B.
I met Dear in my college years in 1972. My friend Heidi auditioned for the Christian singing group that Dear was part of and I met him at the concerts that I’d attend with Heidi. After a summer tour in England the group needed an alto so I auditioned for the group. That fall Dear and I started dating and September 6th of 1973 he asked my father for my hand in marriage.
While in college at Cal-State L.A. I had a part-time job at Montgomery Ward in their parts department. I paid my own way through college but I lived at home so my parents fed me and never charged me rent.
I graduated from Cal-State with a degree in Home Economics and earned my teaching certificate. The photo above is myself and Dear and my brother and me. Besides Fred and me graduating at this time my cousin Jim and my friend Jeaneen and another friend from my Russian Baptist church, Alex, graduated with us.
Some significant things that happened while I was in college besides what I shared already:
My sister Vera got married in November of 1969.
During Summer quarter in 1970 I came down with a terrible sore throat one week before finals. Then I broke out in a rash all over my body. When I went to the doctor they had me come in the back door and straight to an examination room. The doctor diagnosed Scarlet Fever and sent me home on bed rest with medications. While in the doctors office the doctor kept bringing in all the nursing staff there to see what Scarlet Fever looked like. OYE. I was flat on my back in bed and very sick for a couple of weeks. My sister Kathy was planning a trip to England with her best friend so the doctor put her on antibiotics (precautionary). My poor sister ended up being allergic to the antibiotic and broke out in hives all over her body on the day of my cousin Alex’s wedding. She was quite upset but went to the wedding anyway. I missed all my finals and had to take them the beginning of Fall quarter. Needless to say that wasn’t a great quarter for my grade average!
My brother Fred got married in April of 1972.
There was a gasoline shortage in 1973 where there was rationing and we could only buy gas on odd or even days depending on our license plate ending number.
Lynden B. Johnson (63-69) and Richard M. Nixon (69-74) were the Presidents of the United States during my college years.
My next post will be about post college years with my engagement and wedding.
My youngest brother and older sister both commented on my Hume Lake post that I forgot to mention another epic thing that happened in 1963, the year I was saved. How could I ever forget the fact that my mother delivered twins at the end of July that summer? A little girl and a little boy born and my parents now had four boys and four girls under their roof! My father had no idea my mother was having twins and only found out when he got home from work. (no cell phones and my father worked at remote sites with no phones) My little brother Tim ran out to the car to greet him when he pulled into the driveway from work and said, “Pop, not one baby, two babies!” My poor father was in shock!
I leave you with this sweet photo of our little twins Cvetlana (Lana) and Leonard from 1963! They are the icing on the cake for our family.
People! I’m seeing sunshine outside my window and blue skies and very few clouds. This is cause for a celebration here in the Pacific Northwest! We have had rain, rain and more rain for a nice long stretch now and what a welcome sight the blue skies are this morning.
In my 66th year I continue my reflections on my life with a very significant year, 1963, my twelfth year on this earth. A year with a decision that has shaped the rest of my life.
Nestled close to Kings Canyon National Park in California’s Sierra Nevada is the Youth Camp that I was able to attend in 1963, 1965 and 1967. I was 12, 14, and 16 during these wilderness adventures.
I was raised in a family who attended church regularly and often, very religious. The church I was raised in gave me the impression that because I was Russian and a member of their church that I had an exclusive connection with God. What I learned at Bible Camp was that the only exclusive connection I could have to God was through Jesus Christ and what He did for me on the cross. Being Russian and being a part of my father’s religion did not give me a direct link to God. In 1963 at Hume Lake while listening to a speaker talk about Jesus and His sacrifice on the cross to save sinners I was moved to step out and become a follower of Jesus. God’s plan of salvation was exclusively through his perfect son Jesus, who is fully God and came to earth to live a perfect life among us and be the perfect sacrifice for our sins. I knew I was one of those sinners and I needed a Savior. This decision began a journey of ups and downs, highs and lows, but a journey forward with my God and Savior. When I began my new life following Jesus I was clothed with His righteousness and reconciled to God. I continue on this walk, never perfectly but with God’s grace I carry on. He will be teaching me by His Holy Spirit all the days of my life. My God and Savior is and will be faithful to see me through all of my life on this earth and I look forward with the Hope of seeing Him face to face in heaven. During this same year, 1963, my father began his journey of following Jesus after hearing Billy Graham at the Los Angeles Coliseum share the truth of Jesus Christ and why He came to earth over 2000 years ago. 1963 was an epic year for me and my family. For my father and me we became part of God’s movement of love and grace through the Gospel of Jesus Christ. My mother was a follower of Jesus when she married my father. My two older sisters had started following Jesus before my father and me.
I’ll share this verse that Billy Graham proclaims in every interview I’ve ever heard him give. John 14:6 (ESV) Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Reflections of my story from age 18 onward of my life will continue in another post.
Presently we are still waiting for that phone call. We are happy for it coming later than sooner since baby Addy is enjoying the womb and continues her growth in that comfort. We have a bag partially packed so we don’t have to wonder about something we forgot. We keep the car gassed up and ready to go. We are still in a very rainy pattern here in the Pacific Northwest. Plants should flourish well here this Spring. How goes it where you live?
A season of waiting makes for introspection. Some is good and some is not so good. In the world of blogging right now I’m not so good at getting around to many participants in my favorite weekly memes. I will cut down on some so I can do better with others. It doesn’t sit well with my brain and my comfort to be a “hit and run participant”.
I use feedly to keep track of the blogs I don’t want to miss any new posts from. I hope to add more blogs to this site as I search out more faithful bloggers out there.
We are in the season of Lent and Dear and I have set aside something together that we enjoy on a regular basis for this season. So maybe this is a kind of Spring cleaning time in my life.
We are on the alert for the arrival of our little Addy. God knows the timing on this and we will be hitting the road post haste when we get that phone call.
If you don’t see anything new here for a stretch of days don’t get the wrong idea. Blogging and bloggers are near and dear to me. I’m not giving up. Here are some verses from God’s Word on waiting in the English Standard Version.
but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint.
Psalm 27: 13-14
I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord
in the land of the living!
Wait for the Lord;
be strong, and let your heart take courage;
wait for the Lord!
Psalm 33: 20-22
Our soul waits for the Lord;
he is our help and our shield.
For our heart is glad in him,
because we trust in his holy name.
Let your steadfast love, O Lord, be upon us,
even as we hope in you.
Psalm 130: 5-6
I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
and in his word I hope;
my soul waits for the Lord
more than watchmen for the morning,
more than watchmen for the morning.
Isaiah 64: 4
From of old no one has heard
or perceived by the ear,
no eye has seen a God besides you,
who acts for those who wait for him.
1 Kings 2: 3
and keep the charge of the Lord your God, walking in his ways and keeping his statutes, his commandments, his rules, and his testimonies, as it is written in the Law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn,
Linking up with From This Side of the Pond for Hodgepodge Wednesday. Thank you Joyce for coming up with the questions and inviting us to join in.