The College Years

My college years spanned from 1968 to 1973. I had a fifth year for my teaching credential and student teaching.

For my first year of college I went away about 60 miles east of my home to the University of Redlands.

My college roommate was Violet (Violeta). Her major was Spanish. After my first year I decided to move back home and commute to Cal-State Los Angeles to finish my college years.

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.

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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.

My First Plane Ride…

In 1970 my best friend and I were able to plan a trip east to see her family and meet up with friends for a wonderful tour including Mackinac Island, New Jersey, New York City, Buffalo, Boston, Connecticut and Washington D.C.  This would be the first time I took a trip that included flying in a plane. Here are my old photos from that trip.

img327I’m really not sure exactly where we started from and where we ended this trip. My friend Heidi and I traveled from Los Angeles. One of the spots we stayed was in Michigan at our friend Faye’s home. Faye’s dad was our pastor at Bethany Baptist in L.A. for several years. When they left L.A. they settled in Troy, Michigan. Faye and Heidi were best friends through high school. We also spent time on the lake at Peter and Ruth Leonovich’s home. Peter and Ruth took the three of us to Mackinac Island for a day.

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We had loads of fun riding bikes around the island. On the way to the island there were threats of rain and I remember Pete stopping the car so the 3 of us could do sun dances instead of rain dances. Looks like it worked.

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img324In New Jersey after we visited Heidi’s grandmother and uncles and aunts we were guests at Peter Leonovich’s brother’s home. Al and Babs treated us to wonderful meals and a trip into New York City to see the sights including the Statue of Liberty.

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img306Somehow we also ended up in Buffalo New York with more “friends of friends” who took us to see Niagara Falls and we had the most delicious barbecued corn during a backyard barbecue that I had ever tasted.

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img308Andy Semenchuk was our amazing tour guide to Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Washington D.C.

img309Boston was beautiful. I remember how shocked I was at seeing how small Plymouth Rock was.

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img314Because we were from California we had to pose next to Junipero Serra in the National Statuary Room. Turns out the first school Dear and my two sons attended was Junipero Serra Elementary School in Ventura, California.

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img317George Washington’s Mount Vernon

img318Looking back I’m so humbled at how hospitable everyone was to us. A place to lay our heads, food, sightseeing trips, and transportation everywhere we needed to go and didn’t need to go but these amazing people wanted to treat us to these sights. Thank you, thank you, to Andy Semenchuk, the Al Leonovich Family, Peter and Ruth Leonovich, and the Chechowich family. You broadened our horizons and our world view and modeled hospitality to us! I am forever grateful…

Forty Years Ago…

…was the last time I was in Washington D.C.

My girlfriend Heidi and I took a trip to Michigan and the East Coast staying with friends and family along the way.

In Michigan we stayed with our former pastor’s family. Their daughter Faye was Heidi’s best friend while Faye’s dad was the pastor at our Russian Baptist church in L.A. From Michigan we also visited Heidi’s grandmother and aunts and uncles in New Jersey. We were in Buffalo, New York and stayed with Russian friends there. We got to see Niagara Falls. We went to a Russian Christian Camp in Connecticut and then got to see parts of Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and made a quick drive through Washington D.C. We were also treated to a day trip to New York City with some other Russian Missionary friends.

Because Dear has a conference to attend we decided to go a couple days early and take in some sight seeing together. When his conference starts I’ll be poking around on my own. It will be interesting to see how much time I’ll end up on the computer. If you don’t hear from me you’ll know what’s up.

I’m hoping to get some before and after photos of these same scenes.