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Hundred Reasons to Love My Mom

March 28, 2014
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On this, my 100th post on this blog, I want to celebrate the occasion by writing about something very special….actually, someone very special — my mother, Barbara.

As many of you know, my mom is one special lady. And that makes me one very blessed son.

I wouldn’t be here without my mother. You can quote me on that.

I’m going to share some reflections and stories about my mom here, and invite you to share your own in the Comments section below.

My mom is very humble and she’s not going to like reading this. She is a behind-the-scenes type of person and prefers to stay out of the spotlight.

But I’ve written several stories on this blog about my dad, and my mom is due for some words of appreciation of her own.

My mom was born the 5th of 8 children in her family. She was raised Catholic and attended St. Christina Parish Catholic grade school in the Mt. Greenwood neighborhood of southwest Chicago. Family and Catholic values were ingrained from an early age and always most important to her.

My mom was a very beautiful young woman. Here she is in her high school senior class photo.

 

Barbara Mae (DiGuido) Novick

Barbara Mae (DiGuido) Novick

My dad lucked out winning her heart. She did ok herself when she said “I do” to him. They were a very handsome young couple. It’s no wonder their firstborn turned out to be so adorable.

My mom is the best mom I ever had. Heck, she’s the only mom I ever had.

And I can’t imagine anyone having a better mom than I do.

Mom is very selfless, loving and thoughtful of others. Check out the photos in the Dreams of Bozo story on my blog. You won’t see my mom in the photos. My mom would have been the one behind the camera taking the picture so us kids had photos to remember the experience by. And of course mom orchestrated the whole Bozo show outing, having planned it years in advance as there was a 7 year waiting list for tickets to the Bozo show. Mom made wonderful memories happen for us often, and the best ones always involved our family.

My mom liked the expression “Give them roots and wings”. She believed it was important to give my brother and I strong roots of family and faith. And she believed in making sacrifices so my brother and I got good educations that would help us fly like eagles in life. We both have Masters degrees and success in professional life. My brother is a Catholic priest. I’ve made a living in the business world.

When I was about 12 years old my dad’s brother and his wife divorced. His ex-wife and 4 of his kids came to live with us for 6 months until they could get into their own place. It was not easy living. Some women wouldn’t have done that, taking another family into her home like that. My mom not only did, but did so lovingly. My cousin recently wrote some nice words for my mom about how good she was to them. It was the right and kind thing to do. That is how my mom is and that is what I learned from her.

My mom posed with her firstborn “baby” for this photo on my 13th birthday. It is one of my favorites with her.

 

momandme

Mom and me on my 13th birthday

.

Christmas is my mom’s favorite holiday, and she makes Christmas special for so many of us. My brother and I have many wonderful Christmas memories with her, and so does our large extended family. My mom has hosted my dad’s family for Christmas Eve since we were kids. Even though my dad is gone she still hostesses Christmas Eve’s for his side of the family at no small effort to clean, decorate, shop and cook to make Christmas warm and loving for us all.

My mom is active in our parish church. She works in the parish office and knows most everyone in the community. She has been a CCD teacher in the past, an RCIA leader, a Eucharist minister, served on Mother’s Club and been active on the Rosary Altar Society. She ran the snack stand in the school gym for years for bingo on Tuesday nights and basketball games.

And she has touched a lot of lives over the years. Many people have come up to me to tell me nice things about my mom and share the ways that my mom has touched their lives and helped them in various ways at pivotal times.

I’m so proud to be her son.

My mom has taught me so much in life. And still does.

Following my own divorce I’ve been living with my mom for the past couple years. She is a wonderful grandmother and has been so helpful and supportive to me, and my children who live with us part-time. I don’t know what I’d have done without her.

I can never repay my mom for all she has done for me over the years, nor never thank her enough. I am guilty of taking her for granted at times, though I try not to. She has always been there sustaining me, like the ground beneath my feet or the wind beneath my wings.

Thank you, mama.

20140329-011137.jpg

Me and mom bonfire-side at a Marauder team picnic a couple years ago

 

As I was thinking about what to write about my mom in this post, I thought of a hundred reasons and stories about my mom that filled me with warmth, love and joy. I wrote about only a handful of them here. But could have shared so many more. What a treasure she is.

And, as I ponder how she got to be who and how she is, and what her motivation is for doing all she does, I can only witness that she loves Jesus and works to live out the Good News of Jesus in her life. She attends mass on Sundays, Saturdays and Holy Days. She reads the Gospels and spiritual reflections in the mornings. She prays. She does works out of love. She tries to bring the love of Christ to our family, friends, acquaintances and even strangers.

As I celebrate my 100th blog story, I celebrate the woman who gave me life, formed who I am, and has always been there for me in every way and circumstance I’ve needed her. And I still need her. I am thankful to God for the great blessing of her.

In His hands, my mom is a work of art.

Barbara Novick - A work of art

Barbara Novick – A work of art

 

Help me celebrate my mom, Barbara Novick, by leaving her a note with a special memory or two of your own in the Comments section below.

 

 

 

 

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. bsundling permalink
    March 29, 2014 5:42 am

    It was great being next door every day to your mom for many years before I went off to college, got married and made my own life. As the kid next door I only have wonderful memories of Barb. Caring, thoughtful, happy, sincere, are the first of many adjectives I would use to describe her. As my parents health declined it was comforting to know that your mom and dad were there watching over them and would let us know if we needed to know anything our parents weren’t telling us. It made living far from Midlothian easier for all of us.

    One particular day I was talking with Mrs. Novick and as I said hi she responded with, ” Betty you are over 21 it is okay to call me Barb.” It took a few years until that was comfortable for me to say her first name. No matter the situation or conversation her gentle spirit made me feel comfortable. Thanks, Barb for being a part of my life.

    • Ed Novick permalink*
      March 29, 2014 6:15 am

      Thank you for saying so, Betty. Your parents were good neighbors. It was comforting knowing if we ever needed anything we could always “head for the Hill’s”. Thank you for sharing your kind words and memories here.

      P.S, You get to call her Barb?!? I still can’t!

  2. March 29, 2014 9:33 am

    A beautiful tribute to a beautiful person. You are, indeed, very fortunate, to have such a wonderful mother. I wish I could remember more about her. My memories are few and a bit vague, but I do remember thinking she seemed so young and pretty to be a mom! Great blog, Ed, and I love the photos – the 13 yr old birthday boy in particular! How cute! But, I think you were especially clever in your ending with the “work of art” – love it 🙂

  3. Karen Lyvers permalink
    March 29, 2014 11:55 pm

    What a great article and how true! My husband and I met your Mom thru St. Chris and she probably doesn’t even know the profound impact she had on our lives. I remembering going to the rectory one day for something and your mom was there. I had heard she had a son who was a priest and I had always dreamt (literally-dreamt) I would have a son who would become a priest. I asked your Mom how you do that. How do you raise a son to become a priest? Her words were so kind and honest. They were something along the lines of guide them in their faith and they will end up where God sees fit. I understood then and there I could not make my son be anything but I should keep God present in his life so he knows that is a choice. (Sidenote- if you met that son of mine today and asked him his dream job he would say Pope. Olympic Pope to be exact. He wants to be Pope and throw Javelin in the Olympics!)
    Then a few years later my husband joined the RCIA program. He loved going to St. Chris and being part of the Catholic faith but never wanted to take classes to “become Catholic.” He went to a couple RCIA meetings without telling me his plan. He wanted to make sure it was for him. Barb (and Jim Schueller) were so welcoming and sharing and such great leaders. He looked forward to going to RCIA every week and spending time with these lovely people . In turn my faith was renewed as I revisited prayers and readings I hadn’t taken time to read in years. Your mom sharing her faith with Dan, led to his sharing it with me.
    Lastly when my dear mother-in-law passed away suddenly in March 2005, my husband asked me to call the rectory to make some arrangements. I was glad to do this but my heart was heavy and I did not know what to say or exactly what to ask for. I dialed and when the phone was answered I said, “Hello, this is Karen Lyvers, I…” before I could say more, the voice said,” Karen we heard about Dan’s mom passing. We are so sorry. What can we do to help?” That was your Mom on the phone, comforting me by saying exactly what I needed to hear at that moment. What is great about your Mom is that she lets God use her as a vessel to share all the wonderful parts of our faith. What an amazing role model for us all!

  4. Mary R. Marquette permalink
    March 31, 2014 11:39 pm

    Barb you have really been blessed to have such great results with your children. I have ALWAYS felt welcome with you and I also have such admiration and respect for you. Keep smiling. Ed I have to tell you that I am very proud of you also for dedicating this special blog to your mother.

  5. Ed Novick permalink*
    March 30, 2014 3:31 am

    Thank you for saying so, and sharing your personal story here, Karen. I appreciate it and imagine my mom will too.

    And I hope your son makes Pope AND wins Olympic gold (in that order too…wouldn’t that get many around the world to give glory to the awesome power of God!?!?!)

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