Sunday, August 31, 2014

Profession of Faith

My niece, Sr. Theresa made her profession of faith on Saturday, August 30, 2014. It was a faith-filled journey for all of us. We joined with Sr. Cheryl's family to share this beautiful celebration of two women becoming Daughters of St. Paul.

Jim, Cindy, Pat and I ventured out on Wednesday morning to drive to Boston. From the moment we arrived at St. Thecla's Retreat Center in Billerica, Massachusetts on Thursday afternoon we were surrounded by unconditional love, gracious hospitality and gentle care.

it was such a joy to be with family. Jane and Chris so proud to have Theresa taking her vows. All the Noble siblings and significant others surrounding us with love.

There were four little ones, Sarah's Ella, Liz and Joes' s  Margot, and friends of Theresa's Little Theresa and John. They were the main attraction at the retreat center. The Sisters just loved them and had complete patience for their antics.

Over the next few days the Sisters joyfully transported the families and friends to St. Paul's Church in Jamaica Plain, a 45 minute drive from the retreat center, the airport, even the bookstore, wherever they wanted to go.

Every meal was prepared for us and they were such delicious meals. We didn't have to think of anything except enjoying the time with our loved ones.

Sr. Carmen went over every detail of the ceremony with each family. Her great love for God pours out of her and embraces anyone she is with.

After Mass on Friday we were taken on a tour of the media center. The Daughters of St. Paul took precious time out of their work day to explain their mission to our family. Sr. Theresa stopped at each office for us to hear what was accomplished each day by the Daughters working there.

We were amazed to learn that so many projects were going on at the same time in one building.

At the radio station one sister explained that when she began working at the station the technology used was reel to reel tapes. She would mail it out praying they would arrive in time. Many people depended on those tapes to hear the word of God. She said that many times in foreign countries a villager would ride a donkey or a horse for hours to pick up those precious tapes. This was the only way people in the remote villages heard the word of God.

She said that now with digital programming available there was more time spent on preparation and the programs were in greater depth. They were sent worldwide in a matter of seconds over the Internet all over the world. The families commented about how technology had changed so much in the past twenty years.

Stopping at the video department was very fun. Sister showed the children the puppets which were used in their videos. Then she showed a section of the video she had been working on. The little ones were fascinated with the dinosaurs.

The art department was busy making handmade greeting cards. Beautiful wreaths in yellows, oranges and reds adorned the front of the cards. These cards were meant to welcome someone to a new home. Sister showed many finished projects including a coloring book of saints.

The book department was everyone's favorite stop. That is where we saw two prototype book covers for Sr. Theresa's book.  They were side by side on a white board. One maroon and gold and the other one blue and gold. Each with the words, 'The Prodigal You Love' by Theresa Noble. I had tears in my eyes; overwhelmed with the pride and great love I had for my niece. Her book will be published just a few weeks after her profession of her vows. Such an accomplishment! I can't wait to read her book.

Back at the retreat center we did what families do when they gather. We laughed and talked and laughed and took pictures and laughed some more.

The next morning Sr. Martha was taking pictures of pictures on the wall. I asked her if she was a tourist! She said the Daughters were going to tweet all during the weekend and she wanted pictures to add interest to her tweets.

Saturday morning was turning into a beautiful summer day. Honestly I couldn't stop the tears flowing. The solemn vows and rich rituals were overwhelming.

It is up to each Sister to take on an additional name or change their name completely.  The Daughters of St. Paul could not contain the excitement and anticipation of the new names. There had been a box in the dining room for the past few weeks with guesses of what their names would be. When it was announced that Sr. Theresa would add the name Aletheia (the greek word for truth) to Theresa and Sister Cheryl would become Sr. Khristina it was tweeted out for the Daughters all over the world to be a part of this extraordinary day.

A beautiful reception followed. We were at the table with the longtime Noble friends, the Maddens and Sr. Mary Elizabeth who grew up in Bay City. She enjoyed talking about Saginaw and Bay City. It was great conversation and a good time getting to know everyone.

Back at the retreat center we had a delightful evening. A PiƱata, music and dancing, games and lively conversations.

This morning we had Mass at the retreat center. Fr. Anthony, Sr. Theresa's spiritual advisor, celebrated the liturgy. His homily filled me with renewed conviction to increase my prayer time. He graciously gave me his copy and permission to post it here.  I will make it a seperate post.

We have been loved and cared for by the Daughters, certainly a little piece of Heaven on earth. I thank you with all my heart and soul for being sisters to my sweet niece for eternity and caring so lovingly for us this week.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Free Book Promotion - August 26 - 30th

A short story filled with 

love and friendship  

Best friends, Katy, Jen and Colleen enjoy the summer before tenth grade at St. Mary Cathedral High School. Volunteering at the East Side Soup Kitchen, camping in Michigan's Upper Peninsula and helping Colleen's Aunt Sarah start her new bakery are all part of the fun. However, will they be able to help a new friend as he faces difficult challenges? 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Airman Robin J. Jacklin Jr.

Day One - Robbie receives the Coin to show he has finished his basic training.

 So happy to see him!

Talking with Javier and Ayva and Romeo - making faces at them.

 Asking his best friend to marry him!  Robbie and Alicia

 Nana and Robbie by St. Anthony statue - I prayed to St. Anthony every day to give him the strength to endure the training.  Also to St. Anne and our Blessed Mother to comfort him during his time away from his family.

So glad he has moved on to Virginia for his tech training.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Almost home

Our trip to San Antonio was filled with emotions. On our way we stopped at Chris and Jane's. Visiting with Mary, Sarah and baby Ella. Ella talks non stop. We had fun. We all went to Antoinette ' s for treats.

Then we stopped in Dallas to see Kelly and meet Kenneth. What a nice time. Kelly looked wonderful, just returned from Cuba. We so enjoyed our visit and the warm hospitality. Her apartment is so cute.

Then on to San Antonio. So many great things. I started four chapters of the book. I have been writing every day. Such rich experiences. We were so proud of Robbie. I am so glad we came. And... Robbie asked Alecia to marry him. It was so nice to get to know her better on this trip. I used my camera so I will fill in pictures later.

Jane and Chris were so nice to let us come in late and leave first thing in the morning. Got to visit a bit.

We had a wonderful visit with Sr. Honora. She is so busy. We picked her up so we saw the home she lives in and met the other sisters. We took her to Patrick's and it was the best dinner ever.

Home later on today.

Monday, August 11, 2014

St. Mary All Class Reunion

I had such a nice time. Joanna, Caroline, Danielle and Sheala took over the registration and told Pat and me to go have fun. So we did!

I saw so many friends from years ago. Some I had not seen since school.  One person, Marty left St. Mary's after sixth grade. His sister talked him into coming with her. We were so happy to see him. Cathy was another friend we hadn't seen since graduation.

But my favorite thing was sitting with Bette Jo and Velma for about a half hour. They were my Mom's good friends. They miss her as much as I do. They were so pleased to see Sheala. They anticipated her birth and spent a most amazing day with Sheala at my Mom's bedside the day before she died.

It was a fun night filled with memories and laughter. Even got to smack my lockermate for being bad. Doesn't get any better than that.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Inspiration Hits!

I am so happy - I have been inspired!

I have been praying for inspiration for a new book.  Today my prayers were answered.

Mike Sonnenberg is a fabulous photographer based in Saginaw.  Lost in Michigan is one of his websites.  Today he posted this picture on Facebook and my heart melted. I am meeting him this afternoon to purchase the picture for the cover of my next eBook.

I am not sure what the story will be about - but - I started researching the Tawas Point Lighthouse and guess what - some feel it might be haunted by a little girl!!!  Stay Tuned!


This was our beloved - MA - I just loved going to the Novaks and watching her bake cookies.  My Mom made this for my memory book - in 1957.  They all voted NO for me to get my haircut.  Just after this vote, I ended up falling off Kochan's porch and fracturing my skull and the weight of my hair hurt my head so I had to get it cut anyway.

Anne Sullivan Explains How She Taught Helen Keller

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Meatless Chili Stuffed Zucchini

This was a yummy meatless dinner. Cindy gave us a huge Zucchini. I had some meatless chili in the freezer. Delicious dinner.

Done - and not a minute too soon!  

583 nametags for the 
St. Mary Cathedral All Class Reunion 
on Saturday.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Girl's Night

Caroline, Sheala and Ayva had a girl's night last night. It looks like they had fun.