Parental Visits

Oh my God! Almost an entire year has past with no update to my webpage. I am awash in humiliation. And so much has happened in the last 11 months that I’m afraid this update might go on a bit. I will try to be brief, but we all know how verbose I tend to be. . . Here is a quick review of the major events of the last year, not all of which will be included in this update: I officially enrolled in a master’s program for a degree in Library Science, Steve and I are engaged, and I have a new nephew! I told you a lot has happened!

So many cat-related happenings, so little time! Steve claims that I have a tortie in every port, and I think he may be right. To hear about Anne and Steve’s Animal Rescue, click here to visit my Cat Page.

They Came From Tennessee

In the middle of May, the majority of Steve’s immediate family came out for a visit. Steve and I spent a week and a half entertaining our guests from the South. We all had a very fun and busy time driving around the northern half of the state to visit as many historical sites as we could. Here Steve is with his mom, dad, and little sister at Point Bonita.

The Shaw at Point Bonita

We made it up to Gold Country where Steve’s mom was introduced to the obsession that is gold panning. It was truly a herculean effort to get her away from the river at sundown when everyone else simply wanted to eat dinner. We also took a trip out to Alcatraz.

Shaw Clan heading to Alcatraz

Alcatraz from the yard

Neither Steve nor I had ever been there before. It’s just not something you tend to do when you live out here, but people really should. It was very interesting and we enjoyed it greatly. Of course, Steve had some silly notion about locking me away. Something about being “for the safety of mankind”.

Anne in a cell

What I found most interesting, however, was the prospect that one of my relatives may have been a famous inmate at Alcatraz! Now, I currently have no proof of this. My dad is trying to research it, but with the demands on his time from eBay auctions, he hasn’t managed to get very far yet. Even still, I think it is likely that Arthur “Doc” Barker is kin. Anyone who has seen my dad, or any of the Barker men, will look at this picture and know exactly what I mean. Arthur looks A LOT like my dad. See for yourself!

photo display at Alcatraz

And here’s a closer look:

Walter "Dad" Barker Arthur "Doc" Barker

In addition to our various excursions, the LucasArts annual company party was held during the Shaw family visit, so we were able to take Merri, Steve’s sister, and her husband, Reid, out for a night in San Francisco. I must say, we were all looking quite spiffy that evening!

Reid and Merri

Anne and Steve

John, Merri, Reid, and Anne

The food was excellent, the alcohol was flowing, and the 70’s band was a lot of fun. They even welcomed some of the audience on stage to join the act!

Wayne on stage

We had a great night dancing into the wee hours of the morning, only to get up and go into work the next day. It was great to meet so much of Steve’s family, especially since there was just so much to do.

More Midwesterners invade California

Just a few short weeks after Steve’s family left, my parents drove across the country and visited us for a few days. The big excursion of their visit was the trip to Yosemite. We started driving early that Saturday morning and got to the park around 1:30. As a “senior citizen”, last year my dad was eligible for this great thing called a Golden Age Pass. For a one time charge of $10 he got a pass that lets him and anyone in his car into any National Park. For free! It’s a great deal. Encourage your parents to check it out.


It is truly beautiful there, but the park is just so big we couldn’t do it all. Steve and I will definitely have to go back someday. My dad is a huge waterfall nut. So, every time we saw even the hint of a waterfall, we had to stop and take numerous pictures of it. And believe me, there are lots of waterfalls at Yosemite! Much as we teased my dad, the waterfalls are gorgeous and I took a few pictures myself. Here is Bridal Veil Falls.

Bridal Veil Falls

The other thing that really turns my parents on is rock. Especially big ones. They were almost beside themselves when they saw El Capitan.

El Capitan

It was a little embarrassing, actually, what with my dad drooling at it, staring longingly at his little rock pick, and my mom rolling around in paroxysms of delight. Anyway, we finally piled back into the car and made our way up to Glacier Point. Now that was spectacular!

Anne and Steve with Ma and Pa Barker at Glacier Point

Anne and Steve at Glacier Point

We spent the drive home debating whether or not to go into the Moaning Caverns. Once we got there, though, the debate was over. We weren’t going in. It’s really too bad, because I would have loved to get a picture of my parents rappelling into the cavern. Ah well. Instead we went into a cute little town and found the mother of all rock stores. I believe my dad spent a fair amount of money in there, but he refused to tell me how much.

It was a very fun visit, and also successful. Once again, my dad and I spent one morning getting our oil changed!

The following links will bring you to many more of my exciting adventures!
Summer of Sun, including the Lucasfilm 4th of July Picnic, the Roswell All-Stars Softball team, the Scottish Games, and the County fairs.
Steve and Anne go to Monterey! And then to Gold Country. Again!
The ILM Halloween Party
Our fabulous Hawaiian vacation, including tales of our recent engagement!

Coming Attractions:

Steve and I both flew back to the Midwest for Christmas this year, spending four days in Illinois and four days in Tennessee. Additionally, in the coming months many changes are expected to occur. I can’t reveal too much at this time, but I’ll be sure to include such things in future updates.