Sunday, March 18, 2012

Evidences of Spring~Mosaic Monday

~This daffodil pierced the brown oak leaf~

From ferns starting to green and fill in along the banking to vivid green moss growing on a rock wall to a muddy drive or daffodils and peonies coming through the hard earth, even a lone iris spiking up through the icy snow, spring is on her way. And, believe it or not, she is early. Is spring early in your corner, too?

Linking with Mosiac Monday at Mary's Little Red House, come visit. If you've never participated,  please consider it. It is a lot of fun!

Love Vee

Difficult People

This is a series of lessons by Beth Moore on Loving Difficult People. At one point, perhaps video two or three, she says that whoever doesn't have a difficult person to love does not get out enough. Difficult people are everywhere. =/

When coming to grips with the fact that our difficult person (a parent, a child, a friend, a sibling, a co-worker, whomever) is going to be a part of our lives, we need to believe that better days are ahead: Romans 5:5...hope does not disappoint...

Moore also discusses the uncomfortable fact that sometimes we ourselves are the difficult person. Ouch. I really learned a lot from this series and was completely invested because I do have a difficult person in my life...very. (No, not John, Silly!) I'll allow you to seek out the other five videos on your own, if interested,  as this is video one of six.

A blessed day to you!

Love Vee

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Do you receive the *Dover Sampler* every week? I keep a folder of sweet Dover graphics and have been saving this one for just such a day.

We are planning a quiet day with more rest than a person ought to be allowed. I will be baking some soda bread and making some delicious potato soup. What fun to celebrate a remarkable people and a beautiful country!

Blessings to you...

Love Vee

Friday, March 16, 2012

Five Decorating Ideas

1. Hide the tv  (You know how much I've complained about the tv showing. I'm trying to figure out how I can employ this method.)

2. Label Those Jars (This is great and she even provides the downloads for free!)

3. Make Your Own Carriage Doors (Nope, I do not care for my garage doors. I wanted carriage doors. The budget did not allow. This would be a great, and cheap, compromise.)

4. Photography Tip (Always looking for the simple things I can do to take a better photo.)

5. Mantel Makeover (Love everything, even the spray painting, except the chalkboard. Having taught for all those years, there's little about big chalkboards that I appreciate.)

Now here's my bonus offering... I am always trying to add "presence." That's because I tend to drift off to lots of little things with my decorating. Hence the changes to my refrigerator.

The picnic basket and trays...

and the picture attached by magnets to the front of the refrigerator. I like to keep the front cleared of magnets and stuff, though I find it much too stark. Why not try using something with more presence? It could be a framed piece...anything really that isn't too heavy to be held up by magnets. I'm using seven magnets on this 8 by 18 inch frame. (Edited to Add: For those not wishing to use magnets or not able to use magnets,  Command Strips would probably do the job.)

A wonderful weekend to you...

Love Vee

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Funny Old Book and Downeast Humor

Yes, what with two surgeries in the family this week, we're in need of a bit of levity.

Thank you for praying for Sam and family. He is home and doing a little better and will continue to do better. The family is still a bit know how vile the guilt monster can be. Sam will require more surgery in about a year as that metal plate in his leg can NOT stay. Odd as it seems, there is no cast. He'll move about on crutches or using a walker just his size.

And John and I thank you as well for praying for John's cataract surgeries. As of nine this morning, both eyes will have been done and he will be one happy camper. Though I do swear that he's ready to drown in drops. Twelve drops a day per eye until we run out of drops. Is it wrong to pray for the end of eye drops? It is, however, a small price to pay for his good sight and good eye health.


We have a lot of old books hanging around the place. They're in various stages of disrepair. I'm not much of a fan of the latest new decorating thing where the covers are torn from old books and they are displayed wearing nothing more than their longjohns.

John is completely disgusted by decorating with books. To him, books are for reading and He tells the story of shopping for old books at the Salvation Army store where he overheard a discussion that went like this:

Lady 1: No, no, not that one. It has to be blue.

Lady 2: Blue?

Lady 1: Yes, the covers all have to be blue.

Lady 2: Will this blue work?

Lady 1: Yes, any shade of blue.

Finally, John could bear it no longer so he asked the obvious question: What in the world does blue have to do with a good book?

The answer: Everything, if you're decorating a client's room and she likes blue.

Sunday afternoon I happened to look at this old green book. In my world, it's hanging about for its green color and the cute embossing on the cover. I had never looked inside before. I couldn't even remember if it was one that belonged to my family or one that John had picked up in his travels. We now believe it to be his.

The cover is nearly off so I opened it gingerly. Inside there were quaint graphics and the most unusual dedication.

How funny I thought. Wonder who wrote this book...obviously not Josiah Allen's wife (Samantha—she's shown on the front cover in the first picture).

It was not long before I was reading snatches of the book to John and we were laughing our heads off.  At one point, a character named Widder Doodle (Widow Doodle) enters the story. Her head is so soft that if she hit the top of it nothing would prevent it from flattening like putty. Maybe we were tired, but we laughed at that for five minutes. And on and on. After a while, I became convinced that Mark Twain must have written the book (though I had never heard of his writing under a pseudonym).

Thanks to the internet, I soon had an answer to my questions. The author was Marietta Holley who in her lifetime was as popular a writer as Mark Twain. Mark Twain was not only a contemporary, he was also a personal friend. By clicking her name you can find out the interesting tidbits. She told stories in the Downeast tradition, which about explains everything.

Downeast humor is known for colloquialisms, malaprops, exaggerations, irony, pure nonsense, etc.

Yes, we have a long tradition of Downeast humor in my corner. One of our state treasures is Tim Sampl*. Above, you see a sample of his style in this short clip called "Is That Your Cell Phone?" If you listen carefully, you'll hear him slip "out of character" ever so briefly. Some may recognize Tim from CB$ News Sund*y M*rning where he submitted a P*stcard From Maine piece every few weeks.

Which Way to Millinocket?

We also have Bert and I stories, which are a wonderful listen. Some are quite lengthy, but worth every second. And dry. Dryer than a hot August Day with a Canadian high blowing in. The clip above is about a minute and a half long and represents the style well.

Our contemporary lady of Downeast humor is known as the Marden's lady: Birdi* Go*gins. Do you suppose that's her real name? And, after listening to this short piece, I really want to know more about her sister!

Have a great day...

Love Vee

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Prayer Request for Sam

We had a call at ten last evening. My little grandson Sam fell off his bike around 4:30 yesterday afternoon and broke his femur. He had to have surgery and a plate and screws and whatever is used to repair such breaks. We're all feeling terrible about it and yet we are so grateful that he was not even more badly hurt. It is tough to learn life lessons when you're six. Speeding on your bike (thirteen miles per hour) is not such a good thing.

Thank you for your prayers. We're trusting God to restore Sam to good strong health with strong and healthy bones. Sam's parents are a little frazzled...they could use prayer, too. Grandparents and aunties are a little frazzled...count us in as well.

Love Vee
Edited to Add: 8:00 PM

Sam is home from the hospital and feeling as well as can be expected. The doctor made sure that he could move and function on crutches or with a walker before he was allowed out. Sam told me that he still hurts a lot even though he'd left the hospital. I guess he thought that leaving that place behind was going to mean feeling better instantly. His parents are looking forward to a good night's rest in a bed. They both spent the night with him last night while his little brother stayed with his maternal grandparents.  Little brother was very happy to see his family! Thank you so much for your prayers and concern. We appreciate each and every one.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Note Card Party

~Yellow Tulips~

Have you already started looking for your four favorites? I realize that such a low number is a challenge; that's part of the fun. It's going to be interesting for your visitors to see the ones you've selected. 

It took me quite a few tries with the "grab the button" feature. Speaking of which, I used *this tutorial* from Manic Mother. It was excellent, though don't be like me, be a good student and pay close attention when and if you try it.  (This button I speak of is coming soon. I'm working on it right now. I just needed a post to link to first.) ETA: Though I can not seem to get the feature to my post, it is now sitting in my sidebar. Let me know if it's working, Somebody.

I also offer a regular button in case you prefer that method. I believe that you can copy and paste the following without taking the added steps of saving to your own picture files. I'll check that in a minute.

Note Card Party 

True! I just copied and pasted this from my sidebar; however, it can not be placed into your sidebar that way. 

Rules Summary: 

1. Search for four favorite photographs on your own blog. They must have appeared on your blog by the time you link up. (ETA: It might be helpful to remember that you're pretending to create a set of four notecards. Who knows? Maybe you really will!)

2. Write your post.

3. Link directly to your post when Mr. Linky (or whatever) is available here. 

4. Visit ten or so others (at least) and comment. Knowing that new visitors are viewing and commenting is part of the fun. (I give permission for you to look and not comment at blogs practicing safe commenting. All those word verifications get very tiring when trying to visit a lot of blogs.)

5. Have fun!

Looking forward to setting things up here on the evening of March 20! Have a great Tuesday and thank you for helping me get the word out.

Love Vee

Monday, March 12, 2012

Spring Arrived a Little Early

She came with the morning mail...

as lovely as any gift of spring could be. And what's inside?

A quilting book by Vicki Bellino and

Notecards by Sheila of Starshine Through My Windows. Sheila, like so many of you, takes awesome photos. Eventually, these will be used and you may be the recipient, though for now, I'm just enjoying them. One will most likely be framed. Looking at them again, I may decide on a sunset since we don't see very many. Thank you for the gifts, Sheila. They are delightful; you brightened my day; and my world will be experiencing very springy, ten-degrees-warmer-than-usual days all this week. You really know how to send spring!


Now, I have been wondering, if you were going to create a set of notecards from those photographs used on your blog, which four would you choose? Would anyone like to play this game? We could have a Mr. Linky Party. (It would be the first one that I have ever hosted.) We could do this on the day after spring...March 21, 2012. If there's any interest, I'll get a button set up for any who'd like to have one. It sounds like fun to me; how about you?

Love Vee

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Note Card Party Information

***Note Card Parties have been suspended; however, if anyone wishes to take them over, please contact me. 

♫ The next Note Card Party is scheduled for 
September ? ♫

That's right! The summer off for good behavior! Thank you for all the wonderful participation in the past two years. It's been fun!

nEw Note Card Party Rules:

1. Use only four photographs that would make a nice set of note cards. They must have appeared on your blog by the time you link up.  As long as you have at least one photograph that has already appeared on your blog by the time you link up, the remaining three (two, one) may be new photos.  

Four pictures plus a box top cover/sample if you choose featuring all for a total of five. One more and I will visit without commenting. I know. Tough punishment.

2. Write your post and have it posted before linking up.

3. Link directly to your post. (Click on your post's title to get the direct address to appear in the addy bar for an easy copy and paste.) 

4. Link directly back to the party in the same way so that others may follow along.

5. Visit ten or so others (at least) and comment. Knowing that new visitors are viewing and commenting is part of the fun. Please consider removing word verification for the day of the party. (Permission granted to look and not comment at blogs practicing safe commenting. All those word verifications get very tiring when trying to visit a lot of blogs.)

6. It is fine to connect with other parties as long as you, yourself, are not running a linky party in your Note Card Party post AND you can make the rules fit both parties. For example, if you are doing a party called Terrific Ten, it is obviously not going to work for this party that allows a maximum of four plus a box top cover (for your selection of cards).

~Example of a Box Lid Sample (it does not have to be a collage)~

7. Have fun!

If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at this address: Dunnpark at hotmail dot com. 

See you at the party!

Love Vee

Please feel free to copy an image and use in the old-fashioned way providing your own link or simply grab the new button on the side bar. The old button code is at the bottom of this post. Thanks so much!

**Note Card Parties are currently scheduled for the third Wednesday of each month right here at A Haven for Vee. Mr. Linky will be available for sign-up between 2:00 and 2:30 the afternoon before.

A Haven for Vee
A Haven for Vee

The latest button in lavender with the tea cup links directly to the home page of this blog, if you use the code. If you snag in the old-fashioned way, please link it either to the home page or this page. Thanks so much!

Must be linked in the old-fashioned way.

Links to Past Parties:

May Note Card Party
April Note Card Party
March Note Card Party
February Note Card Party
January Note Card Party

December Note Card Party
November Note Card Party
October Note Card Party
September Note Card Party
August Note Card Party
July Note Card Party
June Note Card Party
May Note Card Party
April Note Card Party
March Note Card Party
February Note Card Party
January Note Card Party

December Note Card Party
(November's Party was postponed.)
October Note Card Party
September Note Card Party
August Note Card Party
July Note Card Party
June Note Card Party
May Note Card Party
April Note Card Party
March Note Card Party

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Signs of Spring

Why, hello! I've so missed time spent in Blogdom. I wish that I were on top of the housecleaning and therefore reporting from a clean domicile. I can keep right on wishing. ☺

So we last spoke when I mentioned that I had to baby my back... Yes, well, troubles with my back can be traced to my fourth year when curiosity overcame me and I ignored my great-uncle's warning about that cardboard in the bottom of a hall closet. I stepped in just to see what would happen and found out quickly enough when I landed in the basement sitting upright. For some reason, I couldn't breathe. It seemed like forever before anyone arrived. When they did, my father set me on my feet, patted me on the back, and my lungs filled with air again.  Phew! The adults watched me carefully and announced that I was right as rain, though my back has truly not been the same since. That's what I get for being a disobedient, not to mention stupid, little girl. I have further scars through the years also won during times of folly; my suspicion is that we all do.

For all you other sciatica sufferers, I found something that really helps me relieve the discomfort. The previously mentioned frozen gel pack and sitting in a recliner with my knees higher than my hips. I do this three times a day for fifteen minutes at a time. It doesn't take away all the soreness, but it sure is a blessing to get some relief. At least, I can walk upright. I think at the earliest twinge I shall do this and pray to head off future episodes. (Oh, I really didn't move any furniture other than the china cupboard. The Volkswagens remain as they were.)

But enough about me. Because there's been much bigger and happier news this week.


John is delighted to have one of his eye surgeries done. He wears a big old smile that lights up the place and is audibly praising God at every turn. Cataract surgery is something of a marvel and to see how quickly he has rebounded and is reading and noticing everything. This morning he counted 27 spills on one of the Eastern spruce tree branches just because he could. Before, it would have all been a green blur. It's quite interesting being his driver as he usually is mine. If I had only known how little he was seeing...ahem. He read all the street signs and all the speed limit signs. Let's just say that his not being able to see so well explains a lot.  ;> And he also noticed a sign of spring—8 days until our favorite ice cream shop opens!


There are other signs of spring. The maple sap buckets showed up last week, though we are told it will be a dismal year for maple syrup. There have been a few robin sightings, the forsythia branches have been brought in to be forced, and there's a general feeling of well being. Though the winter was not harsh, it was long, and we are ready to say goodbye. Tonight we'll turn the rest of the clocks ahead an hour and welcome more daylight at day's end. Things are looking up!

Hope to visit you soon. I have missed you.

Love Vee

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

I Can't Understand It

I've done something to my back. I look like an old character from a fairy tale, all bent over and hobbling. My treatment of choice is a bag of frozen gel applied on the notoriously guilty sciatic nerve.

This is bizarre because all the moving I did was from here

to there.

So, this is to say that I'm out for a few until my back decides to allow me to enjoy  visiting and playing again.

Take care now...

Love Vee

Sunday, March 4, 2012

The Ice Cream Munchers~Mosaic Monday

A lovely day we had enjoying the simple pleasures like hanging out eating ice cream...

~The Ice Cream Munchers~

and learning our fractions. =D

~Their Dad Does the Teaching~ ☺

Connecting to Mosaic Monday with Mary @ Little Red House. Hope that you'll check it out!

Love Vee

Not the Brightest and Best

~Mt. Washington March 2011~

Love Vee

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Another Cozy Morning...

wherein I mess up the photography and resort to Gradient 6 (Photoscape). My thought was to show the odd juxtaposition of winter outside and spring inside. A gal must keep hoping so I resort to these tactics believing they may trick my inner child: a sunshiny ribbon tossed around a lampshade, a parade of seed packet high wire acts, and those silly cups that will not be ladylike no matter what I do. If I take the photo from the opposite side, they stick their noses in the air and look away.

I have precious little for you today. My plans are to shove the Volkswagens around in the living room to do a bit of rearranging. I'm premedicating and trying to figure out how to get John out of here. He doesn't need to see these things until after the fact. He'd help, too, but he only wishes to help once. Sometimes these efforts take three or four tries. Not five, Lord, please not five.

John just came in here and so I had to float about in paragraph one for a bit. Can you believe that he was chewing me out? And what was the crime so grievous that it required this interruption? Just this: I threw the new dishtowel down to the laundry. Good heavens. Apparently, it's a never-ending source of irritation for him because his complaint began with, "You did it again!" Well shoot me.

And thus begins my day. You have a wonderful Saturday and if you'd like to share your last argument with your darling, dear, and beloved hubby, feel free or, if you'd prefer, share something you're doing to spring-it-up at your place.

Love Vee

Friday, March 2, 2012

A Bit of This and a Dab of That

Sounds like a recipe...

I've been watching Jennifer at Our Southern Table for some time now. I hang out there daily and am constantly amazed by the quality of the work she has on her blog. I'd love to see more folks visiting because she is an excellent teacher with lots of experience. Her latest post introduces a new project she has in mind—getting back to the kitchen. She states her case so clearly that I couldn't help but nod in agreement. The other thing is, Jen and her family have just moved to a new home and she's already created a working kitchen...from just a few days. I think she might have things to teach me.

She says, "A few things I would like to cover include a little about decor, what you do and don't need, stocking the refrigerator and pantry, casual entertaining, menus, and clever storage ideas."

Jen's link will be on my sidebar making it easy to pop over and see what's going on. I think this will be a fun series!

Our Southern Table


~Beyond My Portal~

The snow ended last night and will return tomorrow. John said, "Honey, the house looked so cute and cozy when I came driving down the street this morning. It's wearing its little blanket." And he says that he's not a poet! ;> 


So many of my blogging buddies are away on March breaks. I will miss you all, of course, but wish for you amazing times. There seems to be a general lull in Blogdom. Is it just me or have you noticed it, too?

So, on that note, what things are of interest to you these days? Is the glut of information so great that you are sometimes overwhelmed? Is Pinterest, Olio(board) or some other thing taking more of your online attention? 

For example, I found a deliciously beautiful blog last night. No, I'll not tell you (unless you beg). It was a peanut butter and marshmallow fluff sandwich, a regular magazine of a blog with page after page of images with nary a word about the blogger or her thought process or anything that would draw me there again. I used that blog for an hour's entertainment and walked away without saying a word. And I thought how sad. For you see, blogs are more to me than fluff and stuff. Though I like a Fluffernutter every now and then; I wish also to find the heart and mind of the one who laid those pages down. Without that, it's not enough.

What do you think?

Love Vee

Thursday, March 1, 2012

I Shall Plant a Garden

Every gardener knows under the cloak of winter lies a miracle...
a seed waiting to sprout,
a bulb opening to light,
a bud straining to unfurl.
And the anticipation nurtures our dreams.
~Barbara Winkler

What is it about March that, even though the calendar says that the new season won't arrive until the 20th, we feel that spring arrives on the 1st? Is that how you feel about it, too? Spring feels so close that I could reach out and touch it. This despite the fact that there's been overnight snow; it is still snowing; it will snow all day, and it's rather brrrisssk.

A mild winter it has been even if Old Man Winter is putting up a fight about slinking on out of here. But I am so done with him. So. Done. I'm itching to get on to the next thing, which is going to mean changes and good ones, I hope.

This delightful book arrived yesterday from Manuela @ A Cultivated Nest. (It might be time to purchase a lottery ticket, I've won so many lovely books and giveaways lately.) Manuela is an accomplished gardener herself and often features posts on gardening. She had a post on *raised beds yesterday that included a lot of valuable information and resources. Check it out!

~Recycling Center~

~Recycling Basket~

Why is Starter Vegetable Gardens by Barbara Pleasant (another lovely surname) sitting there in my recycling basket? Because, until reading this book, I had no idea that my recycling basket is actually a harvest basket for vegetables.

~Harvest Basket~

Yes, well, and I have learned other interesting things like how easy it is going to be to have a wee vegetable garden this summer. I will, of course, show you come summer, though if you want to start planning your own, you could check out this book. It is chock full of fascinating tips. One of my favorites is not to plant vegetables that you don't enjoy. Great point. I might have, you know. I need to be very specific and purposeful because I'm planting an even smaller garden than the author suggests. What's more there'll be no digging involved. No digging! Yes, one of the author's tips involves a no-digging garden plan. Oh joy unspeakable! 


Last week, I received this sweet gift from Karen @ Life is Good~Smile. She had a giveaway that I lost, though she gave everyone a gift. 

Karen knows that I love yellow. This bowl is filled to overflowing with these cheery cloths. I have offerings from bloggers: Karen, Lovella, Suzanne, and from  family members: my mother, my nan, my aunt, and my daughter-in-law. Usually, I can remember which is which, too. Having a good supply is much easier on the budget than paper napkins and paper towels. I just grab a clean one from the top and I'm off. (I won't be using this one for a while, though. It's too pretty.)


So, will you be planting a vegetable garden this year? Will you have to dig? ;>

Love Vee