Saturday, February 29, 2020

"Veronica has gone to God."

These were the heartbreaking words that began the text I received yesterday afternoon, February 28, 2020, on the first Friday of Lent, from Veronica's younger sister Victoria. She went on to tell me that Veronica's death was beautiful. We were about to start praying the Stations of the Cross and followed it with another rosary for Veronica's sweet soul and for her suffering family. Veronica was such an incredible inspiration to me and we will all miss her dearly.

May the angels lead you into paradise,
may the martyrs receive you in your coming,
and may they guide you into the holy city, Jerusalem.
May the chorus of angels receive you
and with Lazarus once poor may you have eternal rest.

Visiting Veronica in the hospital to sing carols just before Christmas

I just got off the phone Dan Cools, Veronica's father, and he asked me to pass along the news of her death to you all and thank you again for your prayers and support.

Here is the update Dan shared over on their GoFundMe page:

Dear family, friends, benefactors and followers, 

Our dear Veronica passed away this Friday in her home with her family around her. When I last updated you we had begun weekly treatments in Bellevue. For two months (according to the lab test) it appeared we were making headway. Then the numbers began to change again. The cancer had begun to grow and paralyzed her from the waist down. After a hospital stay we took her home and did home hospice care. She was charitable as always, caring and sweet to the end. In the 18 months of her illness she never complained. She embraced the Catholic faith. Never doubting the value of suffering when offered to our Lord for the good of others and his church. She prayed for healing but always left it up to God’s will as Christ did on the cross. She received the sacraments regularly. She was given the apostolic blessing last Saturday. She was able to recieve the Eucharist daily for the last couple weeks including her last day. Her faith was tremendous. Her resignation to God’s will completely trusting and complete. Her faithfulness will surely be rewarded with an eternity in our Heavenly Father’s presence. We sincerely want to thank all of you for the gifts and prayers of support. Veronica often said the prayers are what carried her through. She offered her suffering for her benefactors. We ask you for your continued prayers while we go through our grieving at loosing her. She was a treasure God had given to us and has called back home. Yet we also rejoice as her race was run well and she fought the good fight. As our Lord has promised those are faithful to him and follow his way will have eternal life. 
God bless, Dan, Debra and family

They have not asked specifically online for help with the funeral expenses, but they would be very grateful if anyone would like to make a donation this Lent. You can still do so through GoFundMe or I can provide you with a mailing address if you'd like to send a check directly to the Cools. Together we can at least help lighten the financial burden on their family as they grieve this tremendous loss.

Please also continue to pray for Dan and Debra Cools, and their family, that God may pour His grace upon them in this time of sorrow. May God reward you abundantly!

Our girls with Victoria and Veronica Cools last summer

Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord, and let 
Perpetual light shine upon her.
May she rest in peace.
May her soul, and the souls of all the faithful departed,
through the mercy of God rest in peace. Amen.

Leap Day Time Capsule {free printable}

Back on Leap Day 2012 and then again on Leap Day 2016 we made time capsules!

Apparently I was so much more organized back in 2016... I was just searching through my computer files for the 2016 Leap Day Time Capsule document I had created for my children four years ago, and surprisingly I had actually created the images and documents for 2020 back then too. Yay!

The real challenge is going to be trying to figure out where those 2016 Time Capsule booklets ended up following our big move... I have an idea or two (please St. Anthony, help me find them!) and I am going to go look in a few minutes. First I wanted to pop online and share my documents with you all in case any of you would like to make 2020 Leap Day Time Capsules with your children too.

I just uploaded the pdfs to Dropbox. Here are the links:

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Pro-Life Valentines

I love the new Teaching the Culture of Life with the Lives of the Saints series from Culture of Life Studies!

This month I printed out the Pro-Life Valentine's Download to use with my children which includes:
  • 4-page instant download. 
  • A mini lesson on St. Valentine which shows students how to use Valentine's Day to spread the pro-life message that everyone matters. Everyone is valuable. And everyone is loved!
  • Two sets of Valentines templates which you can print out on cardstock, decorate, and make others feel special on Valentine's Day! 

(Right now you can save an additional 20% with code VALENTINE)


This was such a great follow up to having just recently watched the EWTN coverage of the March for Life in Washington D.C. as we continue to work towards fostering an attitude of respect for all human beings in our children. 

Speaking of the March for Life, I  couldn't believe it when our 15 year old spotted her older brother in the crowd in the live coverage... We ended up finding both the boys as well as some of their friends!

#ChristendomCollege #CrusadersForLife

While we were watching the March we also finally got around to using the rest of the Christmas cookie dough that had been forgotten while we all had influenza in January... 

Anyway, we ended up with some darling Valentines to hand out on Friday to remind others how much they are loved!

I even joined the fun by coloring and adding additional quotes to the blank template. 

If you are looking for additional St. Valentine's Day ideas and printable cards, you can find many in the archives here at Shower of Roses including:

(Includes Crossword and Word Search)

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Cocoa Pebbles Grotto

 On the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes

Saint Bernadette and the Miracle of Lourdes • Cocoa Pebbles Grotto
Our grotto was made by Chiquita this year and (quite appropriately) turned out hard as rock.
I just helped break it apart and pile it up!

O Lady of Bernadette, with the stars of heaven in your hair and the roses of earth at your feet, look with compassion upon us today as you did so long ago on Bernadette in the Grotto of Lourdes. 

Our Lady of Lourdes, ora pro nobis!