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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

You're the Best!

Have been trying to strike a deal with the Lord about Saturday. I reminded Him that I've been praying about that date ever since the day was finalized. Finalized as in people have taken vacation days, the pastor has written it in his book and is leaving on vacation...you know, it is set in cement. What am I trying to say? I'm trying to say that the weather frogs are now saying that the weekend will be rainy and cool. Dropping back to Plan C at this point while praying for the best. My deal with the Lord? Please send some of this rain to Texas. It's a gentle rain and everything greens up so well.

white geranium

Thank you, you wonderful gals! I have had so many fantastic suggestions that I could plan a party every weekend. I'm going to take you up on a lot of these ideas. In fact, since I learned yesterday that the bakery has closed in these rough economic times, I'm definitely going to pick up something for dessert at the grocery.

Now, do you have any wonderful last minute easy decorating ideas? :D I am such a shameless little beggar.


Here's John waving hello. He had just come out to let me know that I may not keep the Christmas cactus on the little porch. He says it's too big and is going to be wrecked if I do. I'll have to come up with something else for this little corner. Anyway, he's finished this section, put on a new bathroom door inside the house, and he's heading for the back section if the clouds don't open. We've decided to lean the fence and not try to put that up before Saturday.

Now, I've got to scurry around keeping what's already been cleaned looking good and then attack this front room that I call my office. I'm going to grab someone's happy playlist and boogie away.

Again, ~~thank you~~!

Love Vee
P.S. It's just a matter of time before I'm begging asking for help with a door color for that white door. Gear up! ☺

Monday, June 13, 2011

Halp!

Just when you're on a roll, weather systems move in and change the outlook. It rained all weekend and it's going to rain today, tomorrow, and Wednesday. At least, the weekend is looking good. Anywho, that means that our goals will not be met. We must make new goals and so we'll just drop back and punt and I shall try not to pout too much.


I do believe that I need your help. There will be between a dozen and twenty people so it's a small crowd. There will be no grilling. I am ordering a deli tray today and a bakery tray with goodies. I am not going to try to bake. I've seen some intriguing things online. For example, I really like the idea of  a fruit kabob with various melons and mint leaves. The site said to serve it with cheddar cheese and I can't imagine that at all. I'd prefer a dessert cheese. Do you have a recommendation or do you think cheddar would be the best after all?


This idea looks wonderful to me...found on Pinterest...thank you, Theresa. < insert wry, wry grin > Okay, can't find it either...can't find it so I'll describe it. Rasberries filled with Hershey's kisses (both white chocolate and milk chocolate). That Pinterest moves quickly, eh? I know nothing about it, but I'm going to learn next week. Not this. Oh definitely not this.


Oh aren't those pretty?! But that's exactly the kind of thing that I am NOT looking for. Nothing too fussy. Something easy.

Should I consider some sort of salad? Remember it must be easy, easy, easy and pretty, too.

Okay, my loves...anything that you might suggest will be welcome to my ears.

Oh, I'm planning to create a little picture gallery on my chippy, white fence of my mother's wonderful photos through the years. I have her baby picture and so many others. I want this to be honoring to her first and foremost, though I do not want it to feel like a funeral. She wouldn't want that at all. She'd want a party. 

Okay, I'm officially open for suggestions and encouragements...

Thanks so much!

Love Vee

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Too Busy


Rainy, cold day, stuck indoors, played with Photoscape, decided that the entire mosaic was just too busy


Ahhh, much simpler, much better. Hope my peonies hold up for the next two days of rain...

How's the weather in your corner?

Linking to the wonderful Mary at Little Red House. Mary, thank you for encouraging me to play and then being willing to feature the messes. ☺

Love Vee

Breathe

Slow down, breathe, things are not always what they seem.

Both John and I tend to be "red alert" types. If the sky is falling; it's really falling. If it's raining, it's raining buckets. It's our composition and earthly nature. You may imagine that with two of these types in the same house, things can get pretty exciting from time to time. ☺

We were just discussing this the other day while reading our morning devotions. With two extended families, there are many opportunities to get riled up in our spirits. On my side, I have a well-loved auntie who's going through troubled waters with her health and the doctors don't seem to have it pinned down...diabetes-no; infection-no; stroke-no; heart trouble-no. And my cousin's nineteen-year-old daughter has been very ill and in ICU for some birth anomaly that no one ever knew about until she was very sick and in a lot of pain... Praise be to God that situation is on the mend. On John's side, he has an elderly aunt whose health is concerning, grands and great-grands who stand in need and on and on it goes. I'm sure that it's the same in your world. Perhaps it's your beloved's health or even your own.

Slow down, breathe, things are not always what they seem. Stolen Thoughts perfectly shares this concept. I have a "Stolen Thoughts" kind of story myself.

One of the first summers I was here at A Haven, when it was a mere shadow of its current self, my son and daughter were still teens living at home. Things went wrong all the time and it was up to me to tend to them. I had never owned a home all on my own before and there were many times when I was overwhelmed with my home-ownership responsibilities.

One of those times was after a particularly wet spring when the sump pump was partially filled with water, but not enough to trip the switch allowing it to empty. Back then, I didn't dare to touch the switch. My son came up from the basement one day declaring that there was an awful smell and that a mouse was belly up in the sump pump. Acckkkkk!

In typical "red alert" fashion, I quaked and groaned at the thought. I did go to the cellar and peered from the stairs toward the sump pump where I saw that little gray body floating. The smell was not pleasant and so I declared that I would deal with it another day.

A week went by with the smell reaching the rafters and the body grew bigger and bigger until I was certain that it was actually a rat floating there. My son was unwilling to deal with it. Yes, I'm ashamed to say that I did try to get him to do it. My daughter was unwilling. She's usually the brave one. That left me.

I finally took matters in hand and purchased an old strainer at the flea market. I girded my loins so to speak and descended into the bowels of hell. I marched up to the sump pump and leaned down holding my nose with my left hand and reaching for the revolting mass with my right. I nabbed it and dumped everything into a waiting trash bag.

Wait a minute, wait a minute, what was that thing? I peered more closely. I could hardly believe it. The rotting rodent carcass was actually a toy porpoise pencil topper. A toy porpoise pencil topper? A toy porpoise pencil topper had caused me all that anguish?

I kept it for many years on the porch where it reminded me constantly. My porch was turned into the addition and so the porpoise has been lost. I do know this, he's not in the sump pump this time.

Long enough, God— you've ignored me long enough.
I've looked at the back of your head
long enough. Long enough
I've carried this ton of trouble,
lived with a stomach full of pain.
Long enough my arrogant enemies
have looked down their noses at me.

Take a good look at me, God, my God;
I want to look life in the eye,
So no enemy can get the best of me
or laugh when I fall on my face.

I've thrown myself headlong into your arms—
I'm celebrating your rescue.
I'm singing at the top of my lungs,
I'm so full of answered prayers.


Psalm 13:1–6 The Message

The first verses reflect how we "red alert types" feel when faced with trials and tribulations. It has no basis in truth for God's back is never toward us. We need to know this in our spirits and believe it in our hearts. The final verses are ones of joy when we finally recognize that God is for us and always has been.

Don't forget to breathe now...

Comments are closed on Sundays. Enjoy yours!

Love Vee

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Progress

Recently, I read this comment, "My goodness you post a lot. I can hardly keep up!" Never worry about keeping up. It's always SSDD (same story-different day) around here. Honestly, I don't myself know what I find to chat about, but chat I do and if you show up that's great; if not, no troubles.

Molly the Poodle Poopy (I know, terrible name and we shouldn't offend her, but John just stepped in it again and hence the name sticks just like...okay, I'm not going there). Where was I going with this? Oh, yes, Molly had a grooming appointment today and look what I found outside the groomer's!




Silkies! They are so friendly and docile. Groomer thinks that she has a couple of roosters and would love to give them away. I asked John about it and he thought it highly unlikely that we could take them, but I was thinking of Farmer Sam and all that "gold," which is just about the most euphemistic way to talk about it that I've ever heard.

***
So this is how things are progressing:

1. Deck is washed and this year I did it all by myself with just a little help from John (oxymoron alert).


The fencing is just hanging around waiting...

2. Windows are washed inside and out


When I discovered that the deck wash was good for vinyl windows, the washing of windows became a breeze.

3. The kitchen is cleaned.


Love the product placement! But really, placing a recipe book atop the jelly cupboard is so nice because it is at the right height for reading with no bending and it is out of splatters' way.

4. Let me go check on John's progress...


Oh I just love it...and did you notice that tiny bit of decorative trim at the eave line? Look in the upper right corner. Good job, Hon, now lunch will be ready when the last four shingles on this side are up. ;>

Have a lovely weekend...

Love Vee

Friday, June 10, 2011

So Confused It Hurts

Once upon a time, and it was a long, long time ago, my father and I were housebound together. It didn't last long, perhaps a few weeks. We whiled away the time by watching soap operas. Our discussions consisted of my father asking, "How can she be married to him? She's married to the blond guy!" I would patiently explain the convoluted genealogies of the soap opera world. What I didn't know in the beginning, but finally pieced together, was that my father was combining four or five hours of soap opera programming into one giant lump of a story.

And now it's happening to me! Just substitute Blogdom for soap operas.

Why just yesterday it happened twice.

It began innocently enough when I commented that I hoped Linda's bathroom would get straightened round soon. Linda emailed assuring me that her bathroom was just fine. Oh.

Then Penny painted her table for the umpteenth 20 time and I commented that I loved the yellow incarnation and had missed it. She emailed pointing me to sometime in 2008 when she had painted the table yellow. I soon noticed with horror that I had been there and commented. Dang comments records. Shouldn't they be wiped out after a year?

So, if you are the blogger who has contacted gazillion contractors to come look at the bathroom and no one has shown up yet, would you let me know? Thanks. I'll feel so much better knowing that I didn't make the whole thing up.

***

Some early morning pictures of some progress on the house and peonies.


You might be fooled, looking at the bud, into thinking that it will bloom pale pink. It will, though only on the outer petals.


The centers will be the most gorgeous buttery cream with just a few petals, paler again in the immediate center tinged with hot pink.


Hmmmm, I think I need a croissant.

***


Terribly hot and humid yesterday it was (much cooler today) and still the carpenter worked through the day. He now has a sunburn and he won't mess with sunscreens. I don't know what to do with him!


There was a lot of behind the scenes work such as improving the insulation. He'd take off every other board and insulate and put it all back together. Hopefully, the addition will be accomplished with time to spare.

Have a wonderful Friday!

Love Vee

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Graduation Day

If you are a doting grandmother and every little expression that flits across your grand's face makes you grin and you can't help thinking that he or she is top shelf, then you may be guilty of taking 100 or more photos of said grand on any given day. Oh me!

Looking slightly confused...a bit bewildered...what's it all about?

The heat truly was oppressive.

A good rule for life: When things are a little dull or a little too warm, get down on the floor and have some great conversation with a friend.

Well done!

His other grammie was so thoughtful and brought flowers for him to present to both of his teachers. He was delighted and looked a bit like Ralphie giving his teacher the fruit basket in A Christmas Story.

And I learned something new about my grandson. Many of his classmates have fascinating aspirations for adulthood. There are two who wish to become the tooth fairy, one who wishes to be a toymaker (what fun!) and good, practical Sam who wants to be a farmer. A farmer who can dance!

video

Have a great day!

Love Vee

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Setting the Stone

Sometimes life's events are juxtaposed with each other in such bizarre ways. Such was my day as this morning I watched my mother's gravestone be set and this afternoon watched my grandson graduate from Pre-Kindergarten. I'm saving the graduation story for tomorrow. What's not to love about a class of four and five year olds. They're so cute!

You may remember our desire to honor my mother's love of the cottage and the lake. At that time, I shared *this photo.* (I'd repost it, but my Lacie exterior hard drive is on the fritz. Computer troubles...ackkk.)

This is the stone in Canadian pink with the scene etched in it. I like it a lot.


The monument guys came through. There's a lot to do in this line of work. I was properly impressed.


Guess that's it for today. I'm so behind with my list. It just keeps telling me what to do and I keep doing something else. Hope that it comes out even in the end.

Love Vee

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Projects and Gifts

Do you tend to muddy the waters when extremely busy by not staying focused and adding extra projects that don't need doing at that point? I'd really like to know because if I'm not perfectly normal, I probably should face it now before wasting any more time.

Projects and Planning

So I thought that there's so much to be done that I should make a plan. I could write in my notebook, which I lose all the time or I could waste time visiting a lot of free daily planner sites and select the best one. I finally settled on *this one* and printed off enough pages so that I have two days per page. So far there seems to be enough room. I've filled in the appointments and I've started working backwards knowing what needs to be done on the final morning. Sometimes that's a great technique for planning. So if I know that a deli platter needs to be picked up that morning, I can assign someone to do it (already done) and I can work backwards to placing the order a few days prior.

Then, just to toss a wrench into everything, I decide that making my new dessert cookbook would be a good project. I've already made up my categories and tabs because, you know, I don't have enough to do.

Dessert Recipes Notebook

Dessert Recipes Categories

Yesterday, I was able to approve the design on my mother's headstone. The Canadian pink is beautiful. I am pleased. The monument guy said that, until recently, the headstone was under water in Vermont's floods. Hmmm...

Also yesterday, we shopped at Lowe's for stockade fencing. Yes, the chippy white fence is about to move to a new home and cedar fencing will move in, which will be allowed to gray naturally minus any paint. While looking around, I found a pretty pink knock-out rose, which I will plant sometime this week at the cemetery. (Hope that my friend has also been able to find one for my grandparents' grave. She was so willing to take on the task.)

Knock out rose

 Pink Knock Out Rose

And to brighten my day, my bookmarks, *smelling so sweetly of iris,* arrived from Brenda at It's a Beautiful Life. Thank you, Brenda! They are a little piece of heaven.













Bookmarks from Brenda

I'm already using one in my Flea Market Style magazine that I found at my local Wal*Mart yesterday. I couldn't believe it and had to open it to check for Margo's picture. When I found her, I knew that I had the real deal. Haven't had much of a chance to look at it yet. I'm saving that for my morning break.



So what am I up to today? My plan says that I am to be cleaning the kitchen, the pantry, washing down the cupboards, and scrubbing the floor. Guess I'd better get to it!

Love Vee

Monday, June 6, 2011

Mosaic Monday Dud~Not

And so the countdown begins to that busy weekend after next. (Yes, you can just bet that the monument guy is getting a visit this morning.) While I hope to visit you as usual, if you don't see me, you'll know what happened. Life!

You poor thing suffering last week with my ongoing saga about clothes and getting nothing for the time spent. So I am sharing what my daughter wore to the event (see Sunday morning's post for that story).

in quadruplicate

And now, just because you can't see the setting so well...

beside the rhododendron
The reception was held at a beautiful new hotel along the river where the rhododendrons were in full bloom. And, fortunately for me, they perfectly matched the waistband on L's dress and the color of her sandals. One of my dear commenters suggested I request her help with future clothes shopping. Unlikely that she'd be willing, but I know that I could certainly use her advice.

Have a happy Monday!

Love Vee

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Around the Yard~Mosaic Monday

I missed last week's Mosaic Monday. Just found it today! Good grief. And I love Mosaic Mondays.

Nothing terribly inspiring this week, just a walk around the yard. I know that you'll be able to guess which two photos are my favorites.




1. He's doing the dishes! (I can not tell you how exciting it was to find that hubby was doing the dishes. Always a lovely peek inside to discover that.)

2. Purple wave petunias

3. Pink Columbine with Peony buds behind

4. Container Garden with Zinnia, herbs, and Lantana

5. Lavender phlox

6. Rhubarb

7. Crimson azalea

8.  Molly asking, "What'cha doin'?"

9. Deep purple columbine and one lonely iris. (So glad that they bloomed. I was pretty sure that I had some somewhere.)

10. Pink baby azalea

11. Decorative potato vine in my mother's old bike basket

Connecting to Mary's Little Red House. Hope that you have time to swing through and see some of the beautiful mosaics. It's always a treat.

Love Vee

Many Waters


Because Christ describes our relationship with Him as a marriage...

These are two of the dearest people I know. Yesterday, they celebrated their 50th anniversary, which is a joy when the couple still loves one another more than on their wedding day.

When a marriage has not grown into something richer, fuller, deeper, these kinds of events are not celebrating a whole lot. I have attended both types. Yesterday, we celebrated in the truest of ways. Just as, one day, we shall celebrate at the marriage supper of the Lamb.

Have a delightful day...

Love Vee
As always, Sunday comments are closed.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

The Rest of the Story

The rest of the story? Another wasted afternoon shopping so I'll be falling back on Plan B — wearing something that has been hanging in my closet all along. Even the comfy shoes I purchased yesterday are unsuitable for the event. Advice to self: start early and shop online. Thank you for commiserating with me and for sharing your tips. I'm so over it, that is until I start getting ready in a few hours.

Let's go back to flowers or progress on the house, shall we? Flowers are doing well. House is stalled. Something is stuck. Troubles. I can't quite figure it out, but I think the urging to get this thing accomplished please, pretty please, get a move on, is wearing the man out. We have just two weeks before half the family shows up and I.want.it.done.

And I'm feeling pressured in other ways as well. My mother's headstone has been ordered since late January. It was supposed to be set up for Memorial Day. Didn't happen. I stopped by the monument shop for the fourth time to learn that Canadian Pink had not arrived. I say, "I have family coming from around the country and Canada in two weeks. I expect that stone to be ready." I say it looking straight into his eyes and with steely determination. He says, "I know, ma'am. What can I do? There's not much of a market for Canadian pink these days." I say, "First time you've mentioned that that would be a problem. Is it possible to call Vermont and ask what's going on? To say that you are being pressured by the customer?" He grins and calls and wonder of wonders, the stone has arrived (from Canada) and has been there for several days. He makes the arrangements for picking it up yesterday and, by all that is holy, he had better have done that. I did have a light moment listening to his side of the conversation.


Yes, I have the customer right here. Yes, she's a little concerned. Can I pick that up at noon? Yes, I think I remember where you are, on the right, up the hill, past the Cabot Cheese Factory.



And I think to myself, everything in Vermont is up a hill past the Cabot Cheese Factory.

So there you have it, the story of my life in quick bits. I'm a lumpy, frumpy, dumpy, annoyed, old woman who wants what she wants now.  Go ahead, play Dr. Phil and ask the question: How's that working for ya? 

For you, I wish a much happier, peaceful weekend...


Love Vee