Aaron Boone

Early last Monday morning I received a text from our son Mikos. It stated that Aaron wanted to stop by and visit with us. The sun was not quite out yet, but I knew that I needed to tidy up the house. In June I furloughed our housekeeper for the summer, so Mike and I have been doing all the cleaning ourselves. Monday is my major chore day. The wood floors are the biggest job, so I started with them. I told Mike, “I can’t make it to Mass today because I need to clean!” As I was dusting the furniture, I felt an urging from the Lord, telling me to go to Mass. I yelled out to Mike, “The Lord told me to go to Mass after all. Can you go and pick up some Mexican bread?” Mike looked puzzled, then responded, “Who’s going to mop the rest of the house?” “I’ll do it when I get out of Mass.”  Mike ended up mopping the kitchen, entry way and family room. We’re a great team! Besides this gave me time to meet with the editor to edit this Blog. It never fails–when you put God first everything else falls into place.

Mikos, Mike, me and Aaron


Our family has known Aaron since he was in the seventh grade. Our home was within walking distance from both the high school and the junior high, so this is where the kids hung out. I was always home by the time our kids got out of school. We owned a tortilla factory that  also produced tortilla chips. I can’t tell you how many plates of Nachos I served, this was the staple for these boys.

Jason, Aaron, Mikos and Carter
Brad, Mikos, Aaron and Carter

Aaron was that special kid whose charismatic personality was filled with compassion. Because  he was the mediator for all the boys, he always took the right side and defended his friends with kind, well tempered words. I remember once I was driving the boys somewhere when someone said something unkind about another of their friends. Aaron immediately explained that people change and that the group should give the boy another chance. This is who he was and still is.

The Sleepovers

There were plenty of sleepovers,  but I remember this one in particular. I went downstairs to check on the boys, who were sophomores in high school. I turned on the light and all Mikos’ friends were all there, but Mikos was missing. In a loud voice I asked , “Where is Mikos?” While the other boys pretended to be sleeping, Aaron got up and made some lame excuse for his friend. Needless to say, Mikos was grounded for a while. To this day I still do not know where Mikos was! Through the thick and thin of friendships, Mikos and Aaron have remained friends. Aaron served as a groomsman in Mikos’ wedding and Mikos and Jenny attended Aaron and Laura’s wedding.

Santa Barbara Spring Break 1988 –Carter, Mikos, Aaron, Mark, me and Matt


Mikos and a group of his high school friends get together every year to visit Aaron and  to attend one of his games. Aaron always welcomes their visits.

When Aaron was playing ball for the Cincinnati Reds, he and Laura came to our home for a visit. I remember telling Aaron, “You know God has a bigger plan for your life, way bigger than playing baseball.” I was surprised that those words came out of my mouth, but I knew that it was from God. I prayed that they wouldn’t think I was crazy and left it at that.

The Visit

It was so good to see Aaron again. When I reminded him about the time I spoke those prophetic words he said that he did indeed remember what I had said. Of course Mikos ruined the moment by referring to me as a Nostradamus. My family always has a way of bursting my bubble.

Aaron’s countenance changes when he speaks of his wife and four kids. He is one proud papa! He and Laura are doing a beautiful job in raising their children. He had something special to say about each of his kids.

The Humble Man of God

I asked Aaron if he prays before the games. He replied that he always does. Aaron has a big role in life as the manager of the New York Yankees.  New Yorkers are not the kindest fans, but God placed him as the manager of this team because He knew that Aaron could fill the big shoes of all the other world famous-managers. Aaron will be remembered as a compassionate genius.

God-fearing Parents

Aaron was brought up by two God-fearing parents. While her husband was away playing professional baseball, Sue was the glue who kept the family together. This family is strong because they are grounded in God. Aaron and his two brothers are a product of a praying family.

Years ago I was invited to a party that Sue was hosting. Her special guest was Stormie Omartian. At that time Stormie had authored a book entitled  The Power Of A Praying Wife, This book is a powerful tool for any marriage. I had totally forgotten that I met Stormie Ormartian. I still give out her books as gifts to friends. One thing that I remember purchasing from Stormie that evening were salt and pepper shakers with the word Love on them; these were empty containers because they were meant to season your food with love. My kids loved when I’d get them out and sprinkle love on their food.

The Game

Mikos got us tickets to see Aaron at work. It was not surprising to see how he handles himself in his work environment. Aaron is in control, so his players respect him. At times he would look out at the stands. I don’t know if he saw us, but I was waving my hand wildly and yelling, “Hi Aaron!” We were close enough for Aaron to see us. He smiled and waved back. I was sure it was meant for us, but so did all the hundreds of other people surrounding us.

Anyone who personally knows Aaron will write a similar story because this is who he is to everyone in his life.

My Prayer

Dear Lord, I continue to pray for all those whom You have placed on my heart for prayer. I lift up Carla, Kathy, Alie, Mario, and Anna. Lord, they all need the healing touch of Your hand. I pray that You would grant Your son Aaron favor in all his endeavors. Amen.

Go Yankees!!


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My Almost 15 Minutes of Fame

One of my two dance moves

Do you remember American Bandstand? It was a popular dance program that ran from 1952 –1989.  When I was a senior in high school, Louie, a friend, invited me to go tape some shows. As a 17-year-old this was beyond exciting. We had to take several changes of clothing for the tapings. Trendy hot pants and the English model Twiggy were all the rage. I had a part-time job and was always shopping for clothes, so I had enough changes for the show.   We lived in Colton, a little more than an hour south of where the show was being taped in Los Angeles. We didn’t have to worry about lunch because it was provided by the studio. What I did worry about was all the cool L.A. kids who were regulars on the show. The camera liked them because they were natural, they knew how to play to the camera. I, with my shag haircut, was a little intimidated. I was in great shape and looked good in my attire, but when I heard that the camera added ten pounds I was nervous about looking fat. My body image has been my love/hate relationship my entire life.

American Bandstand

I had no idea that a nationwide dance contest was about to take place. I loved to dance and I felt confident enough to participate. Today I can still vividly hear the song in my head as we headed to the dance floor. “Too Busy Thinking About My Baby” by Marvin Gaye was playing as Louie and I hit the dance floor. I remember the outfit too; I wore hot pants with a matching top. As Louie and I danced our hearts out, we were quickly eliminated. The couples chosen were part of the regulars. They had more experience on the show and were much better dancers than we were.

Dick Clark

Seeing Dick Clark for the first time was like Toto pulling the curtains on Oz. “This is Dick Clark?” I said to myself. This giant on television quickly became a small, life-sized man. I was not disappointed, but the reality of television really sank in because his charm was bigger than his frame. He was poised and professional and talked to everyone like a friend. Our audience was made up of several races: Blacks, Whites, and Latinos with a sprinkle of Asians. We were all there to dance. The show was staged with risers that elevated other dancers. The producers selected the dancers who were regulars to showcase their moves because they were much better dancers than the rest of us.

For hours, I looked through the archives of American Bandstand in search of our tapings, but I could not pinpoint the exact date or the precise year. I  was thinking it may have been the beginning of my senior year. It could have been between 1969-1970. To my recollection, the shows were taped weeks in advance. The sad truth is that I never saw myself on television because one of my cousins was killed in a car accident. The show was to play the weekend we traveled to the funeral. I found it disrespectful to bring up the show while my family was in mourning.

My cousin Elvia was living in Illinois, so I believe she was the only family member who saw me on the show. There were no options back then, no recording devices; so  if you missed the show, it was history. I believe that Louie and I appeared on several tapings.


Years later I had another brush with fame. I was getting my hair cut in Los Angeles at Vidal Sassoon, where I met a young man who would later introduce me to his mother. Carole, his mother, was the creator of “Facercise.” She had developed an ingenious series of face exercises to keep your face firm. Carole was interviewed by 60 Minutes and has worked with many famous clients. I was asked to participate in a seven-day program. Every morning I drove to Carole’s home in Redondo Beach for the sessions. This was a major sacrifice for me because the traffic was horrendous both ways. At the end of the program we had to drive to Thousand Oaks to take the “after pictures.”  I learned to tone my facial muscles. This is a program that Carole still teaches for a hefty price. Around 2002 she was interviewed by NBC; my “before and after pictures” were shared but I never saw that program when it aired. Another cousin, Delia , told me about the show. Thank God I have a ton of cousins.

My before picture (or mug shot)

I am still good friends with Carole’s son Brit; we keep in touch through Social Media. I baptized Brit and Jazmina’s son Noah, and they are included in my daily prayers.

My after picture, after seven days of Facercise featured in Carole’s book

My Fame

I am loved by my family, and I have a good corps of friends. I love my brothers and sisters and keep in contact with them on a regular basis. I have a handful of cousins who remain my dear friends. We watch over our Tia Maria and, when we get a chance, we get together and take her to lunch. I am famous in my family because I serve as the “Family President for Life.” Though this is a self-appointed position and my cousins always attempt to overthrow my dictatorship, I will always remain their loyal president! I’m here to serve.

My Prayer

Lord, I thank You for my family and all the opportunities You have bestowed on my life. I pray for every member of my family, that they may be blessed, and always serve You. I pray for all families who are suffering from strife and have not mended their relationships with one another. Father, You are their Creator and nothing is impossible with You. Heal all broken the hearts in these  families due to separation or strife. May Your peace and  understanding fall on their hearts. Amen.

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The Retreat

The Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament
Father took this picture of us praying

In mid-April I started planning the EWTN retreat . Originally my sister Norma was to accompany me but God had other plans. There is always an attack right before a great blessing, so as the trip was unraveling and I was praying about canceling, the Lord brought Pat into the picture.


Pat and I go back a long way; missionary travels to Nepal, the Holy Land, Patmos, Turkey and other parts of this small world.  Pat has been my roommate on several occasions, and she is my dear friend. She makes me laugh a lot too. She’s been going through changes in her life, so she welcomed the opportunity to get away and spend time with the Lord.

Me and Pat

Our flight was departing from LAX, so she needed to be at our home no later than 5:15 a.m. in order to catch the flight. “I bought three different alarm clocks to be sure to wake up on time,” she said. These alarm clocks would later become hilariously problematic. As we were in line ready to board our second flight, Pat was looking through her duffle bag. “Do you hear that ticking?” she asked me. I responded “Pat, we’re at the airport, you can’t say things like that.” . Sure enough it was one of her alarm clocks ticking away. Later that night, after we settled into our hotel, that alarm went off at 4:00 a.m.

Fr. Leonard Mary

I met Fr. Leonard in the mid-90’s because we were attending the same Catholic lay group. At that time he was Anthony, the young man who accompanied me to feed the homeless on Skid Row in Los Angeles. We have remained friends since then. Mike always makes dinner for Fr. Leonard when he’s in town; he loves chile relllenos and he gets home cooked, authentic, Mexican food when he visits us. Father was recently elected to the office of Community Servant (Superior). This is  a three-year position that comes with a lot of responsibility, which includes overseeing the Friars from EWTN as well as the cloistered nuns in Hanceville, Alabama, where the Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament is located.

The most important part of the trip was prayer and that we did. We drove with Father Leonard and Peter (Fr. Leonard’s brother) to Hanceville to attend the 12 o’clock Mass. While Father met with the Mother Superior, we kneeled before the Blessed Sacrament and prayed. There was a peaceful calm in the Shrine and I could almost sense that God was answering my every prayer. Prayer always brings me peace. We had dinner in Cullman, a small town outside of Hanceville, and visited with Ann. Ann and her family are very close to Father.

The Retreat

Our retreat was centered around loving. Loving everyone, including those who are continually causing strife in our lives. Those difficult people who bring you down at every opportunity; and the passive/aggressive behavior that sneaks up on you when you’re ready to forgive them. Personally I have always struggled with this type of behavior in others. As soon as I want to set myself free of these individuals, the Lord tugs at my heart. I go back in only to discover more challenges. What I learned this time was something that I’ve always known but now I can put it into action.  We are the Christians and we are to lead others to God. When the Lord places these people in our lives, it is because He is refining us to grow in love. We must always consider the troubled person’s background and take into consideration that their journey to spiritual freedom is taking many detours. What I wanted to hear was, “Walk away, they’re never going to change.” But what I heard was, “Be the example; be who God called you to be and never give up on who God has called them to be.” Honestly, it’s so much easier to wash your hands of this than to take the road of forgiveness because you know that until these difficult people start their journey to healing, you’re going to weather a continual battle. Let’s face it, we all have our battles: some are with our health; some with our children; or our  husband, wife, brothers, sisters, etc. It’s never going to be easy serving God, the closer you get to Him, the more intense the battles. But what you must always take into account is that you are never alone! God is with you every step of the way!

Retreat Lesson Taken from Romans Chapter Twelve

From a young age we are conditioned to believe in what we were taught. Not all parents are good teachers, not all parents are good role models. So we need to look at the big spiritual picture.

Compassion – Dying on the Cross Jesus was willing to die for all of us, not just the ones who serve Him. Jesus sees their broken backgrounds and understands why they hate. Jesus moves in compassion and empathy. Empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of others.

Mercy – Mercy, understanding, truth and firmness are part of the recovery that allows us to become whole. We, ourselves, must be whole to fully understand the needs of others. In wholeness I am referring to spiritual wholeness, always striving to become more Christ-like.

When loving others, the starting point is Jesus Who loves us. When you truly understand the love our Father has for us, you can help others. We give what is given to us, so if you have the love of God, you give it to others. If you have hardened hearts, you are unable to give love. When we receive the Sacraments of Communion, you are united with Him in order to grow. We ask for the intercession of Mary for help in expressing the love of God because she always points to her Son for direction. The bond that Mary shared with Jesus can never be broken.

Pat and I were able to attend two additional 7:00 a.m. Masses at the EWTN chapel.

Dear Lord, thank You for allowing Pat and me to travel to Alabama. I pray for Fr. Leonard as he enters into a new chapter of leadership in his life. Give him all the special graces necessary to fulfill this calling. Lord, I continue to pray for all those You have put in my heart: heal those who are suffering from cancer; heal the broken hearted and teach us to love as You love. Amen.


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