Barbara Wiesner Norris

Profile Updated: June 9, 2015
Barbara Wiesner
Class Year: 1968
Residing In: Houston, TX USA
Spouse/Partner: John Norris
Homepage: bjwn2000@yahoo.com
Occupation: Homemaker
Children: Analisa 1973, Laura 1975, Ian 1978, Tony 1980, Michaela 1983, Andrew 1985. 8 grandchildren including More…2 sets of twins. Another grandchild due Jan. 2010. Life is very busy with family.
Yes! Attending Reunion
Comments:

Never thought I would live in Texas, the land of many ancestors. My great great Grandfather was one of the 5 founders of Ft. Worth. My great Grandmother, Grandmother and Mother were all born there. And now a daughter lives there.

Am scrapbooking heritage. Would love to get that finished so I can go on to twins, children and grandchildren. I have pictures of 3 great great greats. My ancestor women saved lot of pictures and information and I am forever grateful to them. I use a combination of digital work and hands on for my layouts.

After College I taught for a year at the grade school I had attended, then for a few months at an inner city school in Denver. The teachers there were not required to sign contracts (thank goodness). I just did not have the stamina for that. After I left, I heard that they tied up the new teacher in her chair. These were 5th graders! After that I worked at New York Life Insurance till marriage.

Johns mother set up a meeting between us. I already had known his parents for a couple of years through conservative Catholic meetings. He was coming home on leave from Andrews AFB and wanted to meet someone. So he returned a book to my mother from his. We dated the whole month he was home before he was assigned to England. He was most fortunate to go there instead of Vietnam. At some point we decided I would like England also so I went over there to get married. Lived there for 1 and 1/2 years. Our favorite hobby there was brass rubbing. That involved using special crayon like stick on paper over the grave images (usually in Churches) of knights and so on. Didn't know it then, but I actually did a brass rubbing of one of my cousin's ancestors.

We lived in Ipswich (about 65 miles from London). Had to carry a big bag on my back to go do the laundry, and walked there as we had 1 vehicle. The grocery shopping was from the base but often at a little shop run by the Battle Brothers. It was so quaint and and homey. Just loved that. Of course, fell in love with the British accent and the people, who always had time to talk. Life was much more laid back and in slower motion. It rained a lot but everything was very green as a result. While there, John graduated from the base branch of Ball State University with a degree in Counseling Psychology. He never went into that field but ended up with Texaco for many years. When they merged with Chevron he stayed on for a couple of years to help with the transition. Then he had the choice, retire or live in California. Well, a no brainer since all the children lived in Texas at the time. Also, the cost of living would have been prohibitive. The funny thing is, his work would have been 15 minutes from where my twin Sue lives. Oh well!

After England, we lived in Denver (where Analisa was born). Then the job took him to Craig, Colorado (where Laura was born). Returned to Denver and had Ian and Tony there. Michaela and Andrew are Texas born. We have lived here for 28 years (which I just cannot fathom). Have always hated the weather and hide inside a lot during the hot months, which are usually 10 out of the 12.

When a young married I did work at different jobs on the base in England and in Denver, before children came along. I was fortunate enough to be able to stay home with the children, which we both felt was very important. The one thing I indulged in in those days, which I continued in Texas was bowling in women's leagues. It gave me some weekly contact with others (aside from Church and School and the grocery store) and was a lot of fun.

Analisa has 4 children, including 5 year old twins (boy, girl). She has a Masters in Education although she graduated from Rice University with a degree in Chemical Engineering. She decided that was not the career for her. She home schools and works part time from home with software issues. Lives in Ft. Worth. She and husband Eric met at Rice University. They had a lot in common along with both being the Valedictorians at their high schools, his in Kansas and hers here in Tx. He is a biochemist.

Laura graduated from the University of St. Thomas in Houston and then from Rice University with a PhD. in Political Science. She also is the mother of 4 including boy girl twins. She also home schools and works part time from home, editing scholastic works and writing. She lives about 20 minutes away. Laura's husband and she met at a dance at Univ. of St. Thomas. He was already graduated when she was a freshman and a friend of his was in the band. The friend challenged him to ask that tall redhead to dance. And they are still dancing. He works for Bayer. His degree is in Biology.

Ian had a troubled childhood with authority issues and drug use. He had to learn a lot of hard lessons, and pulled himself up and now has reaped the rewards of his hard work. We used to spend a lot of time in family counseling with him, and lo and behold, he is now a professor of Psychology at Murray State in Kentucky. His wife, Megan is head of the orchestra at a local high school and loves her teaching position. She plays the violin on weekends in various venues, and when big names come to the area she is always chosen to be in the orchestra. Has played with Mannheim Steamroller for one.

Tony tried college but it really wasn't for him. He was always our steady reliable son. He is married to KC, a photographer. He is a bank manager for Wells Fargo in Austin and owns 2 homes, one of which he rents out. He has done very well for himself without a college education and has a super friendly way with people. Don't know anyone who doesn't like him.

Michaela graduated from University of St. Thomas with a degree in Philosophy ( which gets a person nowhere). She got a Master's in Library Science and is now a librarian. She is in the children's dept. which she absolutely loves. She and Jonathon are expecting their first child in January. They will be closing on their first home in less than 2 weeks. They live in Houston.

Our last child, Andrew is now 24. He has a very difficult time with life. Has been in counseling since the age of 10 and has been on every anti-depressant known to man since then. Very serious depression and anxiety. He can't seem to function in society and is home with us. He has drug and alcohol issues as he does anything to help his depression. We almost lost him to suicide about 3 years ago and we live with that thought constanly as we are sure it could happen again. In this arena, I would ask anyone who has some spare prayer in their hearts to please offer some up for him.

John is, in his retirement, the manager of our food pantry (St. Vincent dePaul) at Church. They pay him for 20 hours a week and he usually works 50. Very much a volunteer job. He derives great satisfaction from helping the needy. He also has been in local theater, mostly musicals. He cantors at Church and sings with the Archdiocesan Choir.

My time is usally taken up with designing on the computer (which satisfies my thirst for artistic output), reading, and above all, helping with the grandchildren. I often go to Fort Worth to help Analisa as she has battled a host of medical problems. Help with the grandchildren here and just love to spend time with all of them. Whenever I'm with one of the families, the first thing the children say is "Grammy, can we do crafts?" We have done a lot of cardmaking and other projects. Favorites are punching and stamping. In my scrapbook work I love stamping the most and they like it too.

I hope I never have to be "retired" from family life. It is too important and fulfilling. Have some health issues (diabetes, fibromyalgia, and oeteoarthritis) but as Debbie Reynolds says in "Unsinkable Molly Brown" "I Ain't Down Yet".

Larry, I thank you for this opportunity to catch up and feel the close ties I always felt at SMOP.

School Story:

I guess most of my catching up is in the comment category. There is one thing of interest tied to my school heritage.

John and I became close with Sr. Cecelia Bush. Don't remember how we were in contact with her, but she had a sabbatical to England at one point while we lived there. Anyway, she stayed with us at our home and we really loved her.

When we lived in Colorado she came to visit and was so wonderful with the children. We had to leave her to babysit once with the two oldest girls because Ian tore up his fingers by playing with the chain on the exercycle and we had to take him to emergency. She also was on hand to babysit another time when our daughter lodged a kernel of corn in her nose and we couldn't get it out.

Last time I had a letter from her she had just published a book at the age of 82. Wish I had kept up after that. I assume she has now gone on to a better place, but can anyone tell me and is there any way I can get her holy card? SPOKE WITH SR. CECILIA ON THE PHONE A COUPLE OF MONTHS AGO. SHE SOUNDED GREAT!

Fond memories of school would have to include Sr. Mel Eesa. She was always there for me and I found it easy to get to the heart that she held under that stern exterior and habit. Was so sad when she passed.

Always loved Sr. Grace also. She did let me get away with things, and gave me good grades I really didn't always earn. When a nephew died and Sue and I had to go home she said we could skip the final and she would give us our grade anyway. And it was a good one!

Mr. Fitzgerald! Wow, what a guy! Sue probably already told this story. She, Len and I were all in his English class. After class one day he said, "Len, how do you know which one is Sue"? And Len said, "Well, I just get up and leave and whichever one follows me is Sue". Early chauvinism.

I especially loved the Campanile Singers. They visited my high school in Boulder, Colo. before I had decided to go to college at SMOP. I developed a huge crush on Jim Ragan and was so glad to see him againl. We never dated but I loved to look at him. Also had a huge crush on Tom Herriage. Never dated.

Always will remember my friendship with Linda Bradford Webb. She is a large part of my history there. Saw her after college when Sue and I went to the first homecoming after graduation. Then I saw her once again after she was married. Where are you, Linda?

My favorite yearbook memories would have to be of Tom Sadler. He worked hard and made us all laugh so much. I always wished he would ask me out. When we danced at the last senior dance, I told him and he said he was always too scared to do that. When I went to the 20 year reunion was glad to see he had such a lovely wife.

Steve Shipley! We are still in contact via e-mail. He is such a sincere and warm hearted person. His work in life is to heal hearts and I know he does it very well. Back in the day I was half in love with him.

One thing I loved most about SMOP was that you really knew everyone. You could walk down the hall and be saying hello right and left. Such a close knit community.

Here's a deep dark secret. Sue and I lived in room 217 of Medaille Hall, just overlooking the front. I used to spy on couples coming home from their dates. The lights would be off in my room, and I would open the window. Such fun! I have to say though, it never really produced much of anything.

A favorite was the cafeteria. Bob Miller was such a wonderful guy and I thought the food was always delicious. I long for a cafeteria to serve me up now.

I once went to a dinner theater in Colorado and saw Tom Mullin in a play. Didn't speak to him afterwards and wish I had. Was with a group and they wanted to leave.

Any regrets? That it was such a short time in my life, that I didn't do as much as I should have, that I left behind some friends forever. One of the greatest things is the strenghthening of my Catholic faith which carries me through today. Hey, things I don't miss are the gym suits and classes!

There must be much more but the mind doesn't always work as well as it should. I usually go once a year to visit Sue in California and look forward to it tremendously. There I get peace, quiet, beauty and rest. I need a break sometimes from these 2 men in my life and I get it a hundredfold there. Thanks, Sue.

Barbara's Latest Interactions

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Oct
22
Oct 22, 2020 at 9:40 AM

Happy birthday blessings, Carol!

Oct
20
Oct 20, 2020 at 9:28 AM

Happy birthday blessings, Tom! Hope you are surrounded by family, friends and love!

Oct 20, 2020 at 9:26 AM

Happy birthday blessings, Rich! Hope you are surrounded by family, friends and love!

Barbara Wiesner Norris posted a message. New comment added.
Oct
08
Oct 08, 2020 at 9:27 PM

Posted on: Oct 08, 2020 at 10:16 AM

Happy birthday blessings, John. Hope your day is full of family, friends and love!

Barbara Wiesner Norris posted a message. New comment added.
Sep
23
Sep 23, 2020 at 7:00 PM

Posted on: Sep 21, 2020 at 9:31 AM

Happiest of birthdays to you, Tom! May you and Anne be blessed in every way!

Sep
16
Sep 16, 2020 at 2:08 PM

Happy birthday, Tom. Hope you and Beth are doing well and surrounded by lots of love!

Sep
15
Sep 15, 2020 at 10:16 AM

Happy birthday blessings, Wayne. Hope you are surrounded by good health and love!

Sep 15, 2020 at 10:15 AM

Happy birthday blessings, Linda! Hope you are surrounded by love!

Sep
07
Sep 07, 2020 at 9:37 AM

Happy birthday, Jim. You've worked hard and come a long way!

Barbara Wiesner Norris posted a message. New comment added.
Aug
30
Aug 30, 2020 at 1:51 PM

Posted on: Aug 29, 2020 at 2:30 PM

Happy birthday blessings to you, Sammy. Hope your life is all you could wish for!

Jul
23
Jul 23, 2020 at 10:00 AM

Happy birthday from Houston to Houston. Hope your day is full of blessings!

Jun
21
Jun 21, 2020 at 2:33 PM

Happy birthday blessings to the BEST brother in law!

Barbara Wiesner Norris posted a message. New comment added.
May
08
May 08, 2020 at 10:04 AM

Posted on: May 07, 2020 at 4:05 PM

Happy birthday, Don! May you be surrounded by health and love!

May
07
May 07, 2020 at 4:03 PM

Happy birthday, Frank. May you be surrounded by health and love!

Apr
01
Apr 01, 2020 at 3:20 PM

Happy birthday, Galen. May you be surrounded by love and peace!

Mar
11
Mar 11, 2020 at 6:28 PM

Dear Marcia...happy birthday blessings. Wishing you love and good health!

Feb
01
Feb 01, 2020 at 2:37 PM

Happy birthday blessings, Bob! Enjoy a beautiful day with Mary Ann and lots of family, friends and love!

Jan
01
Jan 01, 2020 at 9:27 PM

Happy birthday, Phyllis!

Barbara Wiesner Norris added a comment on Profile.
Dec
31
Dec 31, 2019 at 8:39 PM
Dec
06
Dec 06, 2019 at 10:10 AM

Happy birthday blessings, Jill!

Hide Comments
Posted: Jun 09, 2015 at 6:35 PM
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:43 PM
Campanile Days
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:43 PM
Church Photo 2000
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:43 PM
Turner Oak in Fort Worth.
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:43 PM
G G Grandfather Charles Turner, who disobeyed the order of the Confederacy to turn in gold. He buried it under the oak tree on his property. At the end of the war he dug it up and paid off Fort Worth's war debts and helped the town to prosper.
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:43 PM
Part of my family tree. Goes back farther. I'm so lucky to have all the information.
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:43 PM
My Great Grandmother Josephine, daughter of Charles Turner. Her step-grandfather, E.M. Daggett captured Santa Anna's silver washbasin at the battle of San Jacinto, and gave it to her. Made out of hammered Mexican dollars. All new family babies had their first bath in it.
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:43 PM
Great Grandmother Josephine's dinner table in Fort Worth. The basin is on the wall. My Grandmother is the first lady to the right of the basin.
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:43 PM
My father's father, Alexander Wiesner and his oldest children.
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:43 PM
My father's family in 1913 or 14. The oldest 3 were not in this photo. Dad was 5 and is the 3rd from left in back.