Ave Maria Living Magazine | Issue #3 | Nov. 2016

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<strong>Ave</strong> Mar i a<br />

LIVING<br />

Graduate Story:<br />

Roman Samuels<br />

- Page 7<br />

T h e Sol or z an os - Fr om N ew Yor k T o<br />

<strong>Issue</strong> # 3 | <strong>Nov</strong>em ber , <strong>2016</strong><br />

A v e M a r i a !<br />

A Stella M ar is of FL Publication<br />

- Page 12

Stella Maris of FL<br />


avemarialiving@outlook.com<br />


Meli and Matt Neubek<br />

617-519-7423<br />

www.neubek.com<br />


Robb Klucik<br />

239-898-4052<br />

avemarialiving@gmail.com<br />

avemarialiving.com<br />

Fr om the Pu bl i sher s<br />

We hope you enjoyed the October issue of <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong> <strong>Living</strong>. This<br />

<strong>Nov</strong>ember issue is a fun one. Our featured <strong>Ave</strong> graduate, Roman<br />

Samuels, is a vibrant and driven young man looking to leave his mark<br />

on the world and our featured family, the Solorzanos, are a<br />

fun-loving and energetic family with a brand new bundle of joy -<br />

baby Kilian! We'd like to thank them for sharing their stories.<br />

We'd also like to thank our awesome photography team, Meli and Matt<br />

Neubek, and our new writers, Sarah Blanchard and Lauren<br />

Solorzano. They have been instrumental in putting together this<br />

publication.<br />

Finally, we would like to thank all of our local business sponsors. This<br />

publication would not be possible without their support! If you would<br />

like to see your business in this publication give us a call or send us<br />

a message.<br />

Have a Happy<br />

Thanksgiving!<br />


We are always happy to hear<br />

from you! Please email<br />

avemarialiving@outlook.com with<br />

your feedback, ideas, or<br />

submissions. Please note, that all<br />

content must be submitted by the<br />

15th of the previous month.<br />


Emergency..................................911<br />

Sheriff's Office...........239-252-9300<br />

Water Park.................239-348-8384<br />

LCEC............................800-599-2356<br />

AMUC..........................239-348-0248<br />

Quasi Parish...............239-261-5555<br />

Publix..........................239-304-3269<br />

Immokalee Library.....239-657-2882<br />

Donahue Academy....239-280-2450<br />

<strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong><br />

Montessori.................239-261-2272<br />

<strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong><br />

International..............239-692-8919<br />

All cont ent is ow ned by St ella<br />

Maris of FL, Inc., Copyright <strong>2016</strong>.<br />

?<strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong> <strong>Living</strong>? is a t radem ark<br />

of <strong>Ave</strong><strong>Maria</strong><strong>Living</strong>.com and is<br />

used by perm ission.<br />

Hi!<br />

Fr om the Photogr aphy Team<br />

We?re Meli and Matt. We?ve been shooting together<br />

since 2015. Meli has been in the business since 2011<br />

? started in Boston (Go Patriots!) and has been in<br />

Naples since 2012. Matt grew up in Naples since 1985,<br />

has been a self-taught photo hobbyist since 2005,<br />

and got his professional start in 2015 shortly after<br />

he and Meli got married.<br />

We are storytellers and artists and get excited<br />

about being creative with our craft. While our goal<br />

is always to create art, we never fail to<br />

memorialize the day and tell your story. All the<br />

while, having fun.<br />

Capturing moments that make people go, ?woah!?<br />

makes us genuinely happy. Happy is good. Happy is<br />

even better when it?s shared.<br />

You can check out more of our work and get in<br />

touch with us by going to www.neubek.com.<br />

We?d love to meet you,<br />

Meli(ssa) & Matt(hew)<br />


Business Bio<br />


It is said<br />

that we<br />

can?t truly<br />

begin to<br />

understand<br />

where we<br />

are going<br />

until we know where we have been.<br />

Let me take a moment to introduce<br />

myself. My name is Wilson Ospina,<br />

co-founder of <strong>Ave</strong> CrossFit.<br />

From a very young age I devoted my<br />

life to helping others. No other choice<br />

I?ve made thus far has more<br />

conclusively demonstrated this than<br />

joining the United States Navy. As a<br />

Fleet Marine Force Hospital<br />

Corpsman, my sole purpose, mission<br />

and objective was to care for and, if<br />

necessary, rip marines, sailors,<br />

soldiers, airmen and civilians from<br />

the grips of death on the front line.<br />

Finding CrossFit<br />

I?ve carried CrossFit in my heart ever<br />

since I first came across it in 2008.<br />

After I left the Service in 2011, I finally<br />

had a chance to visit my first real<br />

CrossFit Box in Naples, FL. I chose<br />

CrossFit Blaze. My mind was blown<br />

away. The sense of camaraderie, the<br />

tangible passion of everyone there,<br />

the shared anguish all in an effort to<br />

truly pursue fitness. It wasn?t just<br />

about bigger pecs or traps or quads<br />

or how thick the biceps were. It<br />

wasn't about the scale or the number<br />

reflected or the size of your waist or<br />

how skinny or good you looked in<br />

the mirror. This was different. This<br />

was about really developing, growing<br />

strong and finding your true<br />

potential. Creating a better version of<br />

yourself with a focus on longevity<br />

and pushing back disease.<br />

Crossroads<br />

Shortly after my wife and I relocated<br />

and started to attend CrossFit<br />

Redline, where I met some of the<br />

most gracious and wonderful<br />

individuals (I only wish I could have<br />

been there longer), I was confronted<br />

with VA doctor's opinions regarding<br />

my physical health. I decided to<br />

comply and heed their recommendations<br />

to change my fitness habits to<br />

better suit their findings. It was<br />

difficult for me to believe that at 30,<br />

my body would be incapable of<br />

heavier exercise. This never really<br />

sat well me. I found that my health<br />

began to deteriorate. I gained large<br />

amounts of weight and my<br />

cholesterol went through the roof. I<br />

had never felt so miserable about<br />

myself. But at least my knees and my<br />

back were staying healthy, right?<br />

How Far We?ve Come<br />

A little over a year ago today, we<br />

arrived in <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong>. My wife and I<br />

were searching for a home and fell<br />

in love with the community from the<br />

moment we arrived. I was thrilled<br />

with the idea of having my own<br />

garage. Truth be told, I barely knew<br />

what I was going to do with it.<br />

Initially my goal was to get "a few<br />

things? for myself to play with. A bar,<br />

some plates and a rower later, I<br />

began my journey back to CrossFit.<br />

My neighbor joined me for workouts.<br />

One neighbor turned into two. Then<br />

four. Then 8. Fast forward 10 months<br />

and we are holding 3 to 4 classes a<br />

day ranging from just a few to about<br />

18 motivated neighbors at a time, all<br />

from my two car garage. It has been<br />

truly amazing but it seems as though<br />

we have outgrown our little space.<br />

What began as a simple idea in a<br />

garage, a love for fitness and a<br />

distaste for a sedentary lifestyle has<br />

blossomed into a state of desire for<br />

constant improvement. We are driven<br />

by the betterment and the<br />

improvement of others. Today our<br />

battle is different. Our fight is against<br />

complacency. Against chronic<br />

diseases. Against inaction. I view my<br />

role and the roles of our team with<br />

the same passion, drive and<br />

importance as when I served on the<br />

front line. Our mission today is to<br />

live healthy, invigorated and plentiful<br />

lives and to share this philosophy<br />

with as many people as we can. Now<br />

it?s time to begin our next adventure.<br />

Now we want to share this with<br />

absolutely everyone. Stand by. This is<br />

just the beginning.<br />

Who We Are<br />

Our CrossFit Gym in <strong>Ave</strong> is a family.<br />

We are unique and diverse, but<br />

3<br />

all-inclusive. This is a place where<br />

everybody knows your name. We<br />

believe in having fun. Exercise needs<br />

to be different every day and present<br />

new and fun challenges. We believe<br />

this creates a true sense of accomplishment<br />

and confidence. We believe<br />

in mastering the basics. We believe<br />

that building a foundation of<br />

knowledge and proper movement is<br />

a cornerstone of improvement. We<br />

believe in always being a student of<br />

both life and of CrossFit. You can?t<br />

progress forward if you think you?re<br />

done learning. We are here to learn<br />

from CrossFit and each one of our<br />

members, day after day.

What We Do<br />

It?s plain and simple: we make people<br />

healthier and more fit. And we do this by<br />

utilizing the best from many programs like<br />

gymnastics, weightlifting, endurance<br />

training, calisthenics and more. We train<br />

functional movement, meaning we utilize<br />

movements that the body is intended to do.<br />

The CrossFit program is designed to<br />

improve ten general physical skills:<br />

cardio-respiratory endurance, stamina,<br />

strength, flexibility, power, speed,<br />

coordination, agility, balance and accuracy.<br />

The result is well rounded physical fitness<br />

and restored vitality.<br />

Who We Train<br />

Everyone! It doesn?t matter if you begin<br />

CrossFit as a couch potato, a yogi, or a<br />

marathon runner- you will gain incredible<br />

results by committing to our program.<br />

CrossFit is for you if you:<br />

- Are sick of the regular gym atmosphere<br />

- Are tired of not seeing any results<br />

- Want to finally get in shape without doing<br />

it alone<br />

- Have lost interest in your normal gym<br />

routine<br />

- Want to improve in your sport<br />

- Want to feel, look and be your best<br />

possible YOU<br />

- Be a part of an incredible community of<br />

like-minded individuals<br />

For more information, Follow us @<br />


~ Residential mortgages for home purchases<br />

~ Construction loans ~ Lot loans<br />

~ Refinancing your existing mortgage can be a sound financial<br />

decision. Benefits may include: lowering your interest rate, lowering<br />

your monthly payment, removing mortgage insurance, or<br />

consolidating debt.<br />

~ And more<br />

NMLS# 903827<br />

Mark Fein - Mortgage Loan Originator 239-784-7236 Mark.Fein@53.com<br />

C O M M U N I T Y<br />


Book Fair! Ignatius Press.<br />

Sat . No vember 12, 3pm-8pm<br />

&<br />

A T H A N K SGI V I N G D AY<br />

P R AY E R<br />

Sun. No vember 13, 9am-4pm<br />

@ <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong> Quasi Parish Hall<br />

Chr ist mas Tr ee<br />

Light ing<br />

and M ovie Night.<br />

December 16<br />

More Info to Come<br />




513<br />

We t hank you, Fat her, for t he gift of<br />

Jesus your Son w ho came t o our<br />

eart h and lived in a simple home. We<br />

have a great er appreciat ion of t he<br />

value and dignit y of t he human<br />

family because he loved and w as<br />

loved w it hin it s shelt er. Bless us<br />

t his day; may w e grow in love for<br />

each ot her in our family and so give<br />

t hanks t o you w ho are t he maker of<br />

all human families and our abiding<br />

peace.<br />

Am en<br />

~Msgr. Michael Buckley

Legal Corner<br />

By: Robb Klucik<br />


Often people<br />

ask me to<br />

explain the<br />

basic elements<br />

of a Last Will<br />

and Testament,<br />

so here I<br />

will share<br />

some information<br />

compiled<br />

by the<br />

Florida Bar:<br />

A will is a written direction<br />

controlling the disposition of<br />

property at death. The laws of<br />

each state set the formal<br />

requirements for a legal will. In<br />

Florida:<br />

- You, the maker of the will<br />

(called the testator), must be at<br />

least 18 years old.<br />

- You must be of sound mind at<br />

the time you sign your will.<br />

- Your will must be written.<br />

- Your will must be witnessed and<br />

notarized in the special manner<br />

provided by law for wills.<br />

- It is necessary to follow exactly<br />

the formalities required by<br />

Florida law for the execution of a<br />

will.<br />

- To be effective, your will must<br />

be proved valid in and allowed by<br />

the probate court.<br />

No will becomes final until the<br />

death of the testator, and it may<br />

be changed or added to by the<br />

testator by drawing a new will or<br />

by a "codicil," which is simply a<br />

separately written addition or<br />

amendment executed with the<br />

same formalities as a will. A will's<br />

terms cannot be changed by<br />

writing something in or crossing<br />

something out after the will is<br />

executed. In fact, writing on the<br />

will after its execution may<br />

invalidate part of the will or all of<br />

it.<br />


A WILL?<br />

- You decide who gets your<br />

property instead of the law<br />

making the choice for you.<br />

- You may name the personal<br />

representative (executor) of your<br />

will as you choose, provided the<br />

one named can qualify under<br />

Florida law. A personal<br />

representative is one who<br />

manages an estate, and it may be<br />

either an individual or a bank or<br />

trust company, subject to certain<br />

limitations.<br />

- A trust may be created in your<br />

will whereby the estate or a<br />

portion of the estate will be kept<br />

intact with income distributed to<br />

or accumulated for the benefit of<br />

members of the family or others.<br />

Minors can be cared for without<br />

the expense of proceedings for<br />

guardianship of property.<br />

- Real estate and other assets<br />

may be sold without court<br />

proceedings, if your will<br />

adequately authorizes it.<br />

- You may make gifts, effective at<br />

or after your death, to charity.<br />

- You decide who bears any tax<br />

burden, rather than the law<br />

making that decision.<br />

- A guardian may be named for<br />

minor children.<br />


NO WILL?<br />

If you die without a will (this is<br />

called dying "intestate"), your<br />

property will be distributed to<br />

your heirs according to a formula<br />

fixed by law. Your property does<br />

not go to the state of Florida<br />

unless there are absolutely no<br />

heirs at law, which is very<br />

unlikely. In other words, if you<br />

fail to make a will, the<br />

inheritance statute determines<br />

who gets your property. The<br />

inheritance statute contains a<br />

rigid formula and makes no<br />

exception for those in unusual<br />

need. When there is no will, the<br />

court appoints a personal<br />

representative, known or<br />

unknown to you, to manage your<br />

estate. The cost of probating may<br />

be greater than if you had<br />

planned your estate with a will,<br />

and the administration of your<br />

estate may be subject to greater<br />

court supervision.<br />

Attorney Robb Klucik has been<br />

practicing law in <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong>,<br />

Florida, since 2009.<br />







Wr i tten By : Laur en Sol or zano<br />

?People don?t get it, until they see<br />

you do it.?<br />

Roman Samuels was once known as<br />

?the suit guy? at <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong><br />

University, and as he looks forward<br />

to his next journey, he?s hoping to<br />

leave the suit and tie behind.<br />

A graduate from the class of 2013,<br />

the way Roman ended up at <strong>Ave</strong><br />

<strong>Maria</strong> University is not much<br />

different than many people?s story;<br />

his parents urged him to go to<br />

college. As an eighteen year old his<br />

vision for his future involved music,<br />

and dreams of becoming a rock<br />

star. He was already the<br />

singer/songwriter for his band in<br />

Denver, CO and was not exactly<br />

dedicated to school. Getting a late<br />

start in the application process,<br />

Roman applied to mostly state<br />

schools with the exception of <strong>Ave</strong><br />

<strong>Maria</strong> University. His father had<br />

gone to a talk by Tom Monaghan<br />

and, feeling inspired, encouraged<br />

Roman to give it a shot.<br />

When talking about <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong> and<br />

his visit here in July of 2009, Roman<br />

states ?it just felt...peaceful. I could<br />

see myself here.? Admitting he<br />

found the place a bit bizarre at first,<br />

<strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong> University gave him a<br />

feeling of being cared for or<br />

wanted. On phone calls with<br />

admissions staff they referred to<br />

him by name and asked about the<br />

recent shows he performed with his<br />

band. Compared to the state schools,<br />

where he was asked his student<br />

number and phone calls were brief<br />

and impersonal. Roman chose to<br />

journey to Florida and leave<br />

Colorado behind. His high school<br />

band dissipated with a little<br />

resentment and Roman began his<br />

college career in 2009.<br />

In 2009 the University was going<br />

through the accreditation process,<br />


which meant they had to freeze<br />

their curriculum. The majors<br />

offered at the time were very<br />

limited, so with music in mind<br />

Roman chose the closest thing<br />

he could think of...economics.<br />

He laughs as he explains his<br />

thought process; the music<br />

offered was sacred music so he<br />

wanted more of a business<br />

route. There was no business<br />

offered at the time, so<br />

economics seemed like the next<br />

best thing. His initial plan was<br />

to stay at the University for six<br />

months and then transfer to a<br />

school with more options that<br />

better suited his interests. Then<br />

he took his first economics<br />

class in his second semester<br />

and he was hooked.<br />

As a high school student Roman<br />

didn?t care much for school, but<br />

by the end of his first year of<br />

college he found himself<br />

thriving and even loving the<br />

things he was learning about.<br />

He started to think about his<br />

future differently, learning<br />

about stocks, investing,<br />

analyzing companies...in his<br />

words he was ?bitten by the<br />

bug.? After mastering the<br />

juggling of classes, homework,<br />

papers and a social life Roman<br />

remained at the university that<br />

summer to add another<br />

challenge to his plate, a job. A<br />

job as a student worker in the<br />

library quickly changed to<br />

working in the office of Tom<br />

Monaghan on the third floor.<br />

As a student worker Roman did<br />

not need to wear a suit, but<br />

Tom Monaghan quickly got to<br />

know Roman and put him in<br />

charge of a project referred to<br />

as the ?zig zag wall? (a wall of<br />

chapels that would lead up to<br />

the Oratory representing every<br />

rite in the Catholic Church -<br />

with the Oratory representing<br />

the Roman rite. It would be an<br />

outward symbol to show how<br />

universal and multicultural the<br />

Church is - unfortunately the<br />

project hasn?t made it to<br />

production? yet). As a<br />

sophomore in college Roman<br />

purchased his first suit, he<br />

began working from 7 am to 7<br />

pm, meeting with people to<br />

head up this vision Tom had<br />

entrusted to him. Breaking for<br />

classes in between work and<br />

doing homework in the<br />

evening, Roman rose to the<br />

challenge that work and school<br />

brought him. His time working<br />

on the project was limited to a<br />

year, but his future as ?the suit<br />

guy? had just begun.<br />

After the department he worked<br />

in was dissipated due to budget<br />

cuts, Roman looked for work<br />

elsewhere and he didn?t need to<br />

look far. With a recommendation<br />

from Tom Monaghan,<br />

Roman began working for<br />

Schwartz Investment Council,<br />

also known as <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong><br />

Mutual Funds. He began to<br />

enjoy putting on a nice suit and<br />

tie each day, blissfully unaware<br />

of the presence and attention<br />

he had gained from his<br />

business attire.<br />

After graduating in June 2013<br />

with a double major in<br />

economics and business,<br />

Roman was offered a full time<br />

position at <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong> Mutual<br />

funds which he gladly accepted.<br />

Appreciative to have full time<br />

employment and not have to<br />

look for work when so many of<br />

his classmates were not finding<br />

jobs, Roman embraced work<br />

and took advantage of all the<br />

time free from homework and<br />

the benefits of a paycheck. He<br />

says ?that?s when music came<br />

back.? Writing and playing in<br />

his free time, his life became<br />

finance by day, music by night.<br />

He used his money to self fund,<br />

self produce his first full band<br />

album which was released on<br />

iTunes May 1, 2014.<br />

After two years of working full<br />

"It just felt...<br />

peaceful. I<br />

could see<br />

myself here."<br />

-Roman Samuels,<br />

class of 2013, of his<br />

decision to come to<br />

<strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong> University.<br />

time for AMMF and playing<br />

some local venues, Roman<br />

became torn between his<br />

passions. He loved both his<br />

finance life and music but could<br />

not find the joy he got from<br />

playing in front of an audience<br />

at his desk job. In July <strong>2016</strong>,<br />

Roman decided to take a<br />

?sabbatical? from work to figure<br />

out what to do. He returned<br />

home to Denver for a month to<br />

spend time with family and<br />

come up with a plan. It became<br />

crystal clear: if there was a<br />

time for Roman to pursue<br />

music it would be now as a<br />

twenty-five-year-old single guy.<br />

In August <strong>2016</strong> Roman left <strong>Ave</strong><br />

<strong>Maria</strong> Mutual Funds, which he<br />

cannot speak more highly of.<br />

His appreciation of the<br />


opportunities they gave him are<br />

clear and you can tell the<br />

decision to leave was a hard<br />

one.<br />

So what is Roman doing now?<br />

His time in <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong> is coming<br />

to a close as he plans to<br />

relocate back home to Denver,<br />

CO in January. He is using his<br />

experience to come up with a<br />

business plan for how he will<br />

pursue his music career, with<br />

clearly laid out goals,<br />

developing his brand and<br />

finding the market that will<br />

help him grow. He reflects back<br />

on something Tom Monaghan<br />

had told him during his days<br />

working on the zig zag wall<br />

project, ?People don?t get it, until<br />

they see you do it.? It?s a phrase<br />

he can relate to now, because<br />

his dream just doesn?t seem to<br />

make sense to some people. He?s<br />

hoping to make it, and show<br />

people rather than just tell<br />

them.<br />

Reflecting on his college<br />

experience and the timing of<br />

events, Roman is glad he didn?t<br />

just hop on a tour bus with<br />

some band when he was<br />

eighteen. He says college gave<br />

him ?a realization that he had<br />

more skills than just music.?<br />

With a college degree and a<br />

growing resume, Roman is<br />

confident that he can fulfill his<br />

dreams and that this might not<br />

have been the order of events<br />

he would have chosen, but that<br />

the timing is perfect. You can<br />

keep up with Roman on his<br />

journey at<br />

romansamuelsmusic.com<br />

and/or sign up for his weekly<br />

newsletter. He plans on<br />

potentially having a last<br />

performance in the coming<br />

month or two to say good bye<br />

to the place he has called home<br />

for the last seven years.<br />

Thank you Roman for sharing<br />

your gifts and passion for<br />

music to make our world a<br />

more beautiful place!<br />

***"The diversity of rites in the Catholic<br />

Church manifests its universality. Most<br />

Catholics worship according to the Roman<br />

rite, but there are millions who worship<br />

according to different rites. The more we<br />

appreciate their worship the more we can<br />

appreciate our own." Our Sunday Visitor.<br />

By: Emily Stimpson***<br />


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- Specialt y Grade Cof fee Beans = Except ional Flavor<br />

- Each Bag is From a Single Origin<br />

- All Proceeds Fund Mission Work<br />

- Place an order in <strong>Nov</strong>ember and get ent ered for a chance t o w in a cof fee gift basket in December!<br />

- Gift basket s w ill also be available for purchase<br />

Order at : guadaluperoast ery.com<br />

Ask for t he Guadalupe Roast ery DARK ROAST at The Bean Of <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong> and Support<br />

t he Missions and Local Business!<br />

What Makes Specialty Coffee Special?<br />

In the quest<br />

for the<br />

perfect cup<br />

of coffee, we<br />

must start at<br />

the source,<br />

the cherry. Coffee trees produce<br />

berries called "coffee cherries."<br />

Inside each cherry are two green<br />

coffee beans.<br />

When the cherries are ripe, they<br />

turn a bright red color. Ripe<br />

cherries make for the best tasting<br />

beans. But, in many cases, coffee<br />

plantation workers will pick<br />

cherries that are not yet ripe or<br />

over-ripened because it is much<br />

easier to strip each branch of the<br />

berries than picking and choosing<br />

the ripe ones.<br />

Generally, coffee berry pickers<br />

are paid by weight of their<br />

harvest and are, therefore, not as<br />

concerned about the quality of<br />

the cherries they pick.<br />

Coffee farms that produce<br />

specialty grade coffee are<br />

operated a bit differently.<br />

Typically, the workers are paid a<br />

By: Guadalupe Roastery<br />

higher wage and are focused on<br />

the quality of their harvest. rather<br />

than the quantity. Specialty<br />

coffees are usually produced in<br />

ideal climates and on smaller<br />

farms.<br />

To promote and regulate the<br />

industry, growers, exporters,<br />

roasters, retailers, and equipment<br />

suppliers have established trade<br />

associations.<br />

The standard for green coffee<br />

bean classification provided by<br />

the Specialty Coffee Association of<br />

America is:<br />

Specialty Grade Coffee - must<br />

have no more than 5 total defects<br />

with none of them being primary<br />

defects. Must possess at least one<br />

distinctive attribute in the body.<br />

flavor, aroma, or acidity.<br />

Premium Grade Coffee - must<br />

have no more than 8 total defects<br />

and primary defects are allowed.<br />

Exchange Grade Coffee - must<br />

have no more than 9-23 defects.<br />

Below Standard Grade Coffee -<br />

24-86 defects.<br />

Off Grade Coffee - more than 86<br />

defects.<br />

Roasters who pay a premium for<br />

specialty grade green coffee<br />

beans generally take special care<br />

to roast each batch to bring out<br />

the coffee's best attributes.<br />

When it comes to the preparation<br />

of the coffee, there are a wide<br />

variety of options. Many specialty<br />

coffeehouses prefer the pour<br />

over, but it is much more time<br />

consuming than a typical brew.<br />

While the roasting and<br />

preparation are important, it is<br />

the superior quality of the<br />

specialty grade coffee bean itself<br />

that produces a more vibrant cup<br />

of coffee and a more enjoyable<br />

coffee drinking experience.

The Solor zanos - Fr om New Yor k to <strong>Ave</strong> M ar ia! By : Sar ah Bl anchar d<br />

___________________________________________________________________________________________<br />

Everyone loves a good love story, especially one<br />

that takes place in <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong>.<br />

What are the chances that two kids from New York<br />

would only come to find each other? and love? in a<br />

little town in Southwest Florida?<br />

Mike and Lauren?s families lived just a few hundred<br />

miles from each other. Lauren grew up on Long<br />

Island, while Mike?s family moved to Rochester when<br />

he was eight. (Before that, he lived in the Bay area<br />

of California? and Mike still considers himself a<br />

Californian at heart.) When Lauren was looking at<br />

colleges, she had one priority: to get out of New<br />

York. Florida, the land of alligators, skunk ape<br />

sightings, and 80-degree Christmases, was about as<br />

different a place as she could imagine. She fell in<br />

love with the University of Florida?s campus when<br />

she went to visit, and decided to spend the next four<br />

years in Gainesville, earning her B.A. in English.<br />

Mike, too, was in search of balmier weather when<br />

12<br />

he began looking at colleges, but he was also looking<br />

for an education in the Catholic liberal arts. His first<br />

choice was to return to California via attending<br />

Thomas Aquinas College, but when he was<br />

wait-listed, he decided to look around at other<br />

options. He jokes that he ended up at <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong><br />

University because TAC didn?t want him. Luckily for<br />

Lauren, Mike didn?t realize at the time that his high<br />

ranking on the wait-list for TAC basically<br />

guaranteed he would have made it into the<br />

incoming class that year. He put TAC behind him<br />

and decided to go to AMU.<br />

So there they were: Mike was starting his B.A. in<br />

Literature at <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong> University, and Lauren was<br />

three hundred miles away, studying English up in<br />

Gainesville. They had both traveled the distance of<br />

1,000 miles from New York to Florida while<br />

succeeding in maintaining the few hundred miles<br />

that separated them.<br />

Continued on page 14

17<br />

-Quote Author

But Mike and Lauren were clearly<br />

meant to be together. Anyone who<br />

knows them can see how well they<br />

balance each other, how they share<br />

similar interests, how they make<br />

each other? and everyone around<br />

them? laugh and share their joy.<br />

Events seemed to be working to<br />

bring these two together when<br />

Mike?s roommate freshman year<br />

began dating a girl who had been<br />

friends with Lauren since high<br />

school. And yet, it took two more<br />

years for Mike and Lauren finally<br />

to meet. But once they did, things<br />

started moving quickly.<br />

Over Halloween weekend in 2010,<br />

Mike tagged along with his<br />

roommate and his roommate?s<br />

girlfriend on a trip to visit Lauren<br />

up in Gainesville. They went tubing.<br />

On <strong>Nov</strong>ember 9, Lauren?s 21st<br />

birthday, they had their first<br />

?unofficial? date. Lauren and her<br />

friends stopped by the Pub in <strong>Ave</strong><br />

<strong>Maria</strong> before heading down to Key<br />

Largo for the weekend. Mike joined<br />

them there. ?We really clicked that<br />

night,? he says. The next day,<br />

Lauren and her friends took off for<br />

the Keys, but according to Mike,<br />

Lauren?s mind was in <strong>Ave</strong> that<br />

weekend. ?You pathetically called<br />

me the whole time!? he teases her.<br />

Lauren can take it, but she can also<br />

dish it. She reminds him of the first<br />

time he told her that he loved her.<br />

?We weren?t even dating!? she says.<br />

It was December 17, a month since<br />

that night at the pub, and hardly<br />

two months since Mike and Lauren<br />

first met. At 11a.m. on the morning<br />

of Lauren?s last day at the<br />

University of Florida, her phone<br />

rang. It was Mike, and he was<br />

telling her how much he loved her.<br />

This event is now a little bit of a<br />

debate between them. Mike had<br />

finished his final exams the night<br />

before, and when he called Lauren,<br />

he had been up the whole night<br />

celebrating with his friends. He<br />

insists his profession was sincere,<br />

but Lauren is skeptical, considering<br />

circumstances, how much he could<br />

have meant it. Either way, it hardly<br />

matters. They began dating<br />

officially two weeks later. Mike and<br />

Lauren laugh and shrug about that<br />

phone call, chalking it up to ?life<br />

before marriage.?<br />

Lauren graduated the next day and<br />

moved in with her mom, who had<br />

come down to Naples in 2009. Mike<br />

still had another year left of school.<br />

?I was on a 4.5-year plan,? he<br />

14<br />

laughs. ?If I had my way, I would?ve<br />

stayed five.? Lauren cuts in, ?No<br />

you wouldn?t!? And Mike<br />

immediately agrees: ?You?re right. I<br />

wanted to get married.?<br />

Mike and Lauren dated throughout<br />

that year. Lauren began working a<br />

few odd jobs, first at a daycare,<br />

then assisting students in SAT<br />

preparation, and finally as an aid<br />

at various schools, including<br />

Immokalee High School. It was<br />

through her time at Immokalee<br />

High School that she was offered a<br />

full-time job at the Eden Park<br />

Elementary School for the following<br />

year.<br />

On December 17, 2011, Mike<br />

graduated from <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong><br />

University. He moved back to<br />

Rochester and started looking for<br />

work? particularly work that could<br />

support a family. Lauren was on<br />

his mind, and he was making plans<br />

for a proposal.<br />

That Spring, Lauren traveled up to<br />

visit Mike in Rochester for Easter.<br />

The way Lauren tells it, the week<br />

was a crazy one? ending in near<br />

disaster. ?Mike?s brother was<br />

getting his tonsils out, so we were<br />

in and out of the hospital; and then

it was Holy Week, so we were going to Mass all the<br />

time. And then we got into a fight. I said something<br />

aggravating to him, and Mike said: ?You?re going to<br />

eat those words.?For some reason, I thought he<br />

meant he was going to give me a swirly.?<br />

At this point in the story, Mike and Lauren break out<br />

laughing. ?How did you get that idea?? Mike<br />

wonders. Lauren says, ?I don?t know. I thought you<br />

meant it literally? that I was going to have to eat my<br />

words.?<br />

Mike takes over telling the story. ?No, what I meant<br />

is that I was planning to propose.? Mike had ordered<br />

the engagement ring and it was late arriving. ?The<br />

reason why the ring got here late was because<br />

Lauren had told me she had really fat fingers.? The<br />

idea that Lauren has fat fingers borders on the<br />

preposterous, but Mike took her comment seriously.<br />

He contacted the ring dealer and requested it be<br />

sized up for ?fat fingers.? The extra time to get the<br />

ring sized caused it to come late in the mail. He was<br />

anxiously waiting for the ring to arrive when<br />

Lauren showed up at his house? a day before<br />

expected. ?I was trying to surprise him,? Lauren<br />

breaks in. ?There?s photographic proof of this,? Mike<br />

goes on, ?that when she surprised me, she literally<br />

jumped out of a trunk. And you can see it on my<br />

face: ?Oh son of a gun. I?m not ready for you. I don?t<br />

15<br />

have my surprise ready yet.?<br />

When the ring finally arrived, of course all of Mike?s<br />

family wanted to get a look at it. That?s what got<br />

Mike and Lauren started on their fight. ?I had Nosy<br />

Nelly over here,? Mike gestures to Lauren sitting<br />

across their dining room table, ?nagging me about it.<br />

And that?s when I said she was going to eat her<br />

words. I was thinking, ?You?re going to be so<br />

surprised, you dummy!? They?re both laughing again.<br />

A few days later, after Easter, they took a drive up to<br />

Niagara Falls, where Mike gave Lauren a swirly? just<br />

kidding! He proposed. The ring was sized up so<br />

large, Mike explains, that Lauren had to put a whole<br />

pack of Band-Aids on her finger to keep it from<br />

flying off into the Falls.<br />

By summer, Mike was still looking for work and they<br />

were holding off on setting a wedding date until he<br />

found a full-time job. Since nothing was working out<br />

in Rochester, he moved down to Florida to at least<br />

be near Lauren. He started working an overnight<br />

security shift for Moraya Bay (a high rise condo<br />

near Wigins Pass Beach), and volunteering for<br />

Habitat for Humanity in Immokalee. Lauren was<br />

teaching fifth grade at Eden Park Elementary School.<br />

That December, they decided to go ahead and get<br />

married. ?I had a full-time job,? Lauren says, ?so we

could at least pay for our<br />

wedding, and maybe life after.?<br />

They set the wedding date for<br />

July 27, 2013, at St. Williams<br />

Catholic Church in Naples.<br />

Two days before their wedding,<br />

Mike was offered a full-time job<br />

with Habitat for Humanity as<br />

Director of Construction for<br />

Immokalee. As Director, he<br />

oversees anything having to do<br />

with construction, from<br />

infrastructure to the top of the<br />

-Quote Author<br />

roof, from pulling permits to<br />

dealing with venders. Lauren<br />

calls the timing of job offer<br />

perfect. ?We got to go on our<br />

honeymoon, and then go right to<br />

work the next day!? Few would be<br />

so excited about work when<br />

there is a wedding to think about,<br />

but for a young couple eager to<br />

start a life and family together,<br />

income is an important<br />

consideration.<br />

A blonde-haired little girl<br />

wanders over to the table. ?She?s<br />

a honeymoon baby,? Mike says, as<br />

he picks up their two-year-old<br />

daughter Kolbe. Lauren is still<br />

sitting at the table, cradling their<br />

newborn son, Kilian, in her arms.<br />

She is glowing? and it?s not from<br />

the sun setting behind her. There<br />

is a gentle love and a strong<br />

security that can be sensed in<br />

every aspect of their home.<br />

The Solorzano?s house, which<br />

they purchased in July 2014, is on<br />

a canal in Emerson Park. Their<br />

dinning room looks out on the<br />

water, with the tangled Florida<br />

wilderness stretching beyond.<br />

They live in a three-bedroom<br />

single-story home. It?s one of the<br />

original models, but one would<br />

hardly recognize it for all the<br />

work that Mike and Lauren have<br />

put into the home. On the outside,<br />

they recently painted contrasting<br />

colors that draw out the<br />

architectural details of the house.<br />

A set of bright orange adirondack<br />

chairs speaks of the fun and<br />

friendly lives within. Inside, Mike<br />

and Lauren have put down<br />

engineered bamboo flooring.<br />

They?ve renovated the bathrooms,<br />

painted cabinets and doors in<br />

cheery colors, and even installed<br />

a custom-built breakfast nook. (It<br />

certainly helps that Mike is in the<br />

construction business.)<br />

Mike says they?re a fan of the<br />

?tiny home? lifestyle. ?I want to<br />

try to be practical with space.?<br />

They go back and forth, sharing<br />

some more of their plans to<br />

install more custom shelving and<br />

storage, maximizing their space.<br />

Lauren adds: ?We figure this will<br />

some day be our tiny home,<br />

depending on how many kids we<br />

have.?<br />

?We love Emerson Park, now that<br />

we live here,? Lauren says. They<br />

came to the neighborhood<br />

?accidentally,? simply buying a<br />

home that suited their needs.<br />

Mike wouldn?t prefer to live<br />

anywhere else in <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong>. He<br />

loves the community, and to see<br />

all of the kids growing up around<br />

them. Lauren loves the layout of<br />

the neighborhood. ?I like how it<br />

feels like we?re close to everyone,<br />

and how the people around the<br />

corner still feel like immediate<br />

?I like how it feels<br />

like w e?re close to<br />

everyone, and<br />

how the people<br />

around the corner<br />

still feel like<br />

immediate<br />

neighbors.?<br />

- Lauren Solorzano<br />

neighbors.? Now that the<br />

Solorzanos are in Emerson Park,<br />

Lauren says: ?We would choose it<br />

again, every time.?<br />

One can?t help but think that Mike<br />

and Lauren know a good thing<br />

when they see it. For all their<br />

jokes and teasing, they are clear<br />

about what is important in<br />

life? growing in their love for<br />

each other, making a welcoming<br />

home for their children out of<br />

this love, and choosing a place to<br />

live, like <strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong>, where their<br />

love and their family can thrive.<br />

___________________________________________________________________________________________<br />


Stella Maris of FL<br />

<strong>Ave</strong> <strong>Maria</strong>, FL 34142<br />


ECRWSS<br />

U.S. POSTAGE<br />

PAID<br />


Local<br />

Postal Customer<br />

<strong>Ave</strong><strong>Maria</strong>GratiaPlena<br />

Hail Mary Full of Grace Luke 1:28

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