Duane and Clare Ann's
Life in California 2004

with side trips to Nevada, Arizona and Utah
also starring granddaughter Ashlynn

2004 in pictures

Skiing near the ranger station at Grant Grove in Kings Canyon National Park New Year's vacation.

Duane skiing across the meadow near the visitors center.

Clare Ann leading the way away from the visitors center.

Having a hot drink in our Eurovan after skiing. Duane still sports the long beard he wore to Pakistan, returning just before Christmas. Wise men in Pakistan are called "whitebeards."

Back at home Andrew reads to Ashlynn before she goes to bed.

Ashlynn and Andrew putting a large pile of peach prunings into the green waste can.

This 1980 Honda 500 was in remarkable shape for its age, but didn't last long. All the rubber parts gave up, one by one.

The four generations picture with Duane, his mother Dorothy, son Andrew and granddaughter Ashlynn.

Clare Ann putting the remodeled kitchen to good use.

She's frying krupuk, an Indonesian rice tortilla.

Duane is the sous chef, as well as chief dish and bottle washer.

The dinner we've been making is soto ayam, an Indonesian chicken soup with various condiments.

The occasion is a gathering of northern California Mennonite pastors, Clare Ann being their conference minister.

Clare Ann went on a learning tour to Mexico studying immigration issues. The focus was undocumented aliens. This photo is of the Mennonites on the tour.

At the jumping off point for undocumented aliens to cross the desert there is a cross saying "Van mas de 2500, Cuantos Mas?" It commemorates the 2,500 people known to have died trying to cross here.

Ashlynn dying Easter eggs.

Ashlynn riding around the block at home.

The first family bike ride without training wheels. Yes, Ashlynn did crash into Duane's back wheel and got some lovely road rash.

Ashlynn's first bicycling tour of Yosemite (no training wheels now!)

How we got the bikes to Yosemite.

Duane and Clare Ann participated in commencement exercises at Fresno Pacific University in May.

Ashlynn's kindergarten graduation followed FPU's.

Ashlynn with sparklers on the 4th of July

Ashlynn's beach visits had been pretty cold, so we tried again

It was chilly enough that burying people in the sand felt good.

Ashlynn enjoyed Camp Harmony, sponsored by the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom.

Camp Harmony taught interpersonal peacemaking skills.

Ashlynn made many new friends at Camp Harmony, besides knowing some people from church.

On the way to Pacific Southwest Mennonite Conference in Phoenix we stopped off in southern California to connect with two of Duane's Indonesian colleagues who were visiting. Ibu Janti is married to Duane's successor at Duta Wacana Christian University, and Ibu Krisni was part of the peacemaking team Duane led in Indonesia. Krisni is a member of the faculty of Duta Wacana Christian University.

The desert was fascinating and new for Ashlynn.

Ashlynn's first visit out of state was to Arizona.

A couple of weeks later we returned to the desert, camping through Zion, Bruce, and North Rim of the Grand Canyon National Parks.

The Great White Throne in Zion NP.

Camping just outside Zion NP

Waiting for Clare Ann and Ashlynn, Duane spotted this deer

Ashlynn's photo of Duane and Clare Ann

Weeping Rock, where water spurts out of solid rock.

Ashlynn playing in the creek below Weeping Rock.

Ashlynn and Clare Ann hiking in the Virgin River in Zion NP

Duane and Ashlynn hiking in the Virgin River.

Campsite outside Bryce Canyon NP

Bryce Canyon. The formations are called Hoodoos.


Duane, Clare Ann and Ashlynn overlooking Bryce Canyon.

A city of hoodoos in Bryce Canyon

Obligatory official Bryce Canyon sign picture

We hiked down to Victoria's Garden. It was hot and steep. Until we reached the higher Grand Canyon north rim most days were 100 or so degrees.

The trail down into the canyon.

Are we there yet? One doesn't know unless there is a sign. This one explains how to see Queen Victoria.

Here she is, the queen silhouetted against the sky.

The Jr. Ranger program didn't appeal to Ashlynn at Zion, but she got into it at Bryce, earning her badge.

Hoodoos start out as peninsulas, then arches, and finally the freestanding formations. Every once in a while we drove through an arch.

Another day, another national park. Now we are camped on the north rim of the Grand Canyon, about 200 yards from the edge.

The white-tailed Kaibab squirrel lives only here. It has a cousin on the south rim.

The GC junior ranger program included sitting quietly on the rim drawing or writing about what you see.

The trail from campground to visitor center goes along the rim and is not uninhabitted

A viewpoint right outside the lodge. It is one of the few places on the north rim with cell phonne signal. It was funny to see everyone's phone ring as they walked out there not knowing they had missed calls.

Obligatory official sign photo.

Vistors Center relief map of the park, showing where we are.

Angels' Window, an arch which provides one of the few views of the Colorado River from the North Rim.

A telephoto shot through the window showing the river.

Looking toward the south rim.

Ashlynn rock climbing at the lodge.

Ranger Pat doing a program on the California Condor. One of three release sites is near here. Ashlynn is helping to hold up a Condor model showing its 9 foot wingspan.

Ashlynn and Clare Ann being used as object lessons in the Condor talk.

Ashlynn receiving her Junior Ranger badge for North Rim.

Clowning with a real ranger and his hat. The Jr Ranger program really transformed the trip for Ashlynn, getting her to focus on animals, plants and rocks rather than games.

Our campsite was on the edge of the campground, with a ravine and hill next to us. Lots of deer came by, and Ashlynn tried stalking them.

It was cold on the north rim, so a campfire was just the thing. Ashlynn decided she does not like smores, but likes the components individually.

Ashlynn's photo of Duane and Clare Ann hiking.

We hiked far enough down into the canyon for a different perspective.

If we had continued following the trail we would have wound up on the south rim.

We also had these wild turkeys as visitors to our campsite, a new experience for all of us.

One last view from the easterly side of the north rim.

We came home through Las Vegas to make a stop at Hoover Dam.

Looking straight down the face of the dam to see the powerhouses on left and right.

On the tour of the powerhouse showing the row of huge generators.

Top of the dam showing the lake behind.

As much of the face of the dam as one can photograph under post 9-11 security measures.They no longer let you exit the powerhouse for the look up the face of the dam, even though fishermen in boats could do just that.

On the way home we came upon a genuine tourist trap, withcement dinosaurs and severalfast food restaurants. We stopped, of course.

Ashlynn's photo of Duane and Clare Ann in the shade of a dinosaur.

A kitten entered the family shortly after our trip, named after the constellation Cassiopeia from our national park star shows. Cassie for short.

Cassie particularly liked the Spongebob Squarepants chair.

First day of first grade photo.

We live a couple of blocks from the California State University Fresno corn fields, so eat a lot of freshly picked corn.

Family Camp at Camp Keola marks the end of the camping season at Huntington Lake.

The water in Huntington Lake is not far from snowmelt in temperature, as Ashlynn discovered upon slipping off her tube.

The Fresno Zoo had a special exhibit of white tigers. Ashlynn having done Zoo Camp we had to go see.

One last beach attempt, this time to Moro Bay for Duane and Ashlynn while Clare Ann was at a meeting.

Bad Bubba's Ribs is the eating place in Paso Robles where the bull ride is tame enough for kids during daylight hours.

Checking out ski trails to come in Kings Canyon National Park we hiked to Panorama Point.

Halloween required more pumpkins than usual.

Ashlynn went trick or treating dressed as a princess.

Two grandmothers, two sibs and a cousin. Guess who's who.

At the Monterey Bay Aquarium Ashlynn tries on a native American shark mask.

South African penguins at the aquarium. They are like the ones we saw in South Africa on Robben Island.

Camping by the river in Big Sur.

Ashlynn's picture of Duane and Clare Ann. We hoped to see California Condors, but they weren't around.

The Eurovan makes camping pretty comfortable in the cold.

The first missing tooth.

Thanksgiving dinner at our house with the Joe Hoo Ie family from Indonesia. He is pastor in residence at the Center for Peacemaking and Conflict Studies.

Cole School holiday program.

Cole School holiday program again.

The Christmas Tree farm we usually go to in Reedley has this very cool scale model steam train.

Riding the train.

Decorating the Christmas tree. Just as we finished it fell over dumping a gallon of water.

Tree back up with new red balls.

Cole School awards assembly. Ashlynn had learned her 60+ math facts.

Eating supper with Center for Peacemaking staff and friends at the Schellenberg home.

The other dining room at the PACS holiday event.

Kartika Suwandi received her BA degree from FPU at the December commencements. Her parents came from Java to see her. Kartika worked as VORP's bookkeeper under Duane's supervision.

PACS faculty celebrates with Ernst Janzen from Brazil on the completion of his MA in peacemaking and conflict studies.

The next morning the Janzen family was on an airplane home.

Christmas boxes piled at Mennonite Comunity Church for distribution to apartment dwellers.

Pastor Steve Ratzlaff toting boxes.

We distributed over 500 boxes.

Sunday School Christmas Program at Mennonite Community Church.

Christmas program continues.

Christmas program

Ashlynn's sister Autumn came for a Christmas holiday sleepover.

Cookie baking

Finished cookies

Making our traditional Christmas breakfast wreath

Christmas eve with the Dettweiler/ Bohn/ Mondragon part of the family in Reedley.

Christmas morning stockings bright and early

Sewing kit was a big hit.

Stopping to play with something.

Christmas brunch.

Starting on the main presents at once

New dollhouse

Obligatory Christmas Day nap.

Supper with Guy Johnson, his mother and girlfriend.

Learning to sew.

Last modified 020305.
©2005 Duane Ruth-Heffelbower.
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