Tuesday, February 19, 2013

February Note Card Party~Fruit


The bowl of Cortlands is one of my very favorite photos of all time on the blog and it was taken way back in 2008. I broke all the rules by not using using daylight and with no clue about composition or any other thing. I may be regressing if the final two photos, taken recently, are any indication.

Ahhh the grapes and the recipe written in my mother's printing — horrid picture, out of focus and still I love it. You can find that recipe in my recipes located in my sidebar. I know that many of you have enjoyed a grape salad — so cool and refreshing and delicious!

I'm putting this post up a little early because I am on Nonni duty tomorrow. The grands are coming for lunch and spending the afternoon. Yay! This is the first time that I've had them both together for any length of time without a parent in sight. If you are the grandmother of active boys, you might understand this. ☺ Now that they are old enough to get along well and cooperate, I'm looking forward to having them both here at the same time.

Okay, let's have some fun!

Love Vee
 Mister Linky is working! Thanks, Support Desk.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Some Items of Business and a Downton Abbey Spoiler Alert

Two items of business and then some major Downton Abbey spoilers. When you see *Spoiler*Spoiler*Spoiler,* you'll consider yourself warned, right? Oh good.

First of all, this week is the Note Card Party. I know. So soon! There's a new button, if you'd like to have it; otherwise, carry on as usual. Both buttons can be found at the page you find when clicking for details. Either button is fine with me — whatever fits your decor. Thank you for displaying it (presuming that you do). I appreciate it so much. Seems as if our little Note Card Party is in decline so we'll see how it goes and play it by ear. There are new things coming along in Blogdom all the time that may be of more interest.

Like the new thing going on at Donna's. She is hosting a photo challenge *here.* She will not be holding your hand (mine neither apparently), though she will be providing links where we can learn a few tips. The first photo challenge is...well, you just run over there and find out! This could prove interesting. I may learn something in spite of myself.

*Spoiler Alert*Spoiler Alert*Spoiler Alert* 

So there we were watching Downton Abbey last night with part of the storyline taking place near Iverness, Scotland (Scottish Highlands, up in the glen, very pretty place).

Oops...wrong show!

There was a lot of walking about in the countryside and the gardens...

Violet Crawley and her niece Susan married to Shrimpie, parents of Rose

Am I far enough down here yet? I certainly hope so because I'm about to blow...

They killed him? Are you kidding me?! First they kill Sybil in an extremely cruel way and now Matthew? Oh there was a lot of foreshadowing, many hints of things to come.

Okay, perhaps not that bad...

Allow me to back track a bit. Just when I might have supposed that Matthew and Mary's love story is the major one of Downton Abbey, I realized all over again

that theirs is not the major love story after all. It is this love story that holds the fibers together:

And so help me, if they mess with that love story much more I am really going to be upset. Consider yourselves warned, Downton Abbey people. (Julian Fellowes, this means you!)

Last night, there was a whole lot of "coupling" going on. Even Mrs. Patmore was in on it. Thank goodness she listens to her dear friend Mrs. Hughes.

Let's see, we had...

Doctor Clarkson and Isobel Crawley. I love the acting...doesn't she have the perfect pleasant and perplexed look going on? (Not only that, I loved the color of those walls.)

Tom and Edna and, thank you, Carson and Mrs. Hughes, for calling it correctly. That little Edna had to go. Phew! I just love Mrs. Hughes' wisdom: "Tom, she tried to make you ashamed of who you've become."

Mr. Bates and Anna shared an idyllic picnic in Scotland. Lovely to see them together and I only hope that the scene with little Rose is not any kind of foreshadowing whatsoever. Do you hear me, Downton Abbey people?

(I did like the way Rose's dress matched the tree.)

Then we had Edith and Michael (the married man) and, sadly, Edith has slipped her moorings telling him that they will have many more evenings together. Ackkk....

And wouldn't I just love to see Carson and Mrs. Hughes finally realize that they care deeply for one another...What do you think?

But just this one last time, let us focus on dear Matthew and Mary...

Mary looks so lovely in blue...

The newest Crawley family and the newest Lord Grantham to be... Will his name be Matthew? 

Matthew's over the moon with happiness...so giddy!

"You'll be a wonderful mother, Mary."

The final kiss...

So very giddy...

I'd just like to say that it would be fine with me if you'd change your minds, Downton Abbey people. I am not opposed to "it was all a dream" sorts of scenes. Just sayin'...

Your thoughts on Season Three?

Love Vee

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Shortbread Cookies~Mosaic Monday

Cheryl at Thinking About Home has this simple and delicious recipe for shortbread cookies right *here.* Hers are prettier, but mine taste just as lovely, I'm sure.

I made them to enjoy while I watch the final episode of Downton Abbey's season three. Tomorrow we'll chat, but I'll put a great big old Spoiler Alert in my title as fair warning. I know that some of you will be watching later, but I'm tired of waiting for you to catch up. < insert mean snicker >

Linking to Mary's Little Red House for Mosaic Monday. Come see what everyone else is chatting about!

Love Vee

Come Unto Me

The only true calling anyone ever really gets is 'Come unto Me.' From that one specific calling, the result might be that He'll then send us to somewhere. But the real calling of God is to Him, not to something or somewhere. ~Bob George 
And certainly the real calling of God is to Himself, not to something or somewhere or even someone. I'm working on getting my priorities straight...

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.~Matthew 11:28–29

Love Vee

Saturday, February 16, 2013

More of the Same

This is how the weekend will go...

I'm giving myself over to the watching of  Wives and Daughters or The Tenant of Wildfell Hall Pollyanna (PBS) It was delightful!

Right after I finish the laundry, wash up the dishes, do my Saturday chores. Better get a move on.

One good thing: no more leftovers! Now we can get back to proper eating again. Phew. Valentine's Day can be dangerous!

Comments are closed so that you can scoot. Have a blessed weekend.

Love Vee

Friday, February 15, 2013

Valentine Postscript

The sweet factor was over the top so I kept using the lemons to visually cut it back a bit.

I love lemons!

Cupcakes and cookies, too.

 Lots of cookies...

 Pinterest style

 Battery tea lights in the evening...

Chocolate wafer cake for dessert...

with wee chocolate hearts cut from Andes mints.

Yes, I did serve other food. This barbecue rib recipe and this ham and cheese slider recipe and salad and a salsa dip. No photos of that, but it was all yummy.

We had such a fun, busy day getting ready to host the returning travelers for supper. And I loved hearing about the Puerto Rico vacation and seeing all the beautiful pictures. They came home sporting sunburns, though they had tried hard to avoid them. My niece tells me that it will help her remember the trip a little longer. What a plunge from warmer, sunny climes back to cold New England all in a few short hours.

(It was a pure terror having someone else in the house with a camera, too. Now I have had two things reinforced: 1. stay on the diet 2. get something done with my hair!)

Love Vee

Thursday, February 14, 2013


 I have a little something just for you...

Right there in the second hanging cup — can you see it?

Though it's very tiny, it holds this message:
I think if I've learned anything about friendship, it's to hang in, stay connected, fight for them, and let them fight for you. Don't walk away, don't be distracted, don't be too busy or tired, don't take them for granted. Friends are part of the glue that holds life and faith together. ~Jon Katz 
I count you as a dear friend. You who spends time here so many days through a year. I hope to catch up with you as well in skips and hops through the day. I don't want to be too busy on this busy day.

Enjoy a ♥Very Happy and Blessed Valentine's Day♥!

Love Vee

P.S. For any who have some extra time, Mary at Little Red House is hosting a party (around 2 pm EST) with the theme Love.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Hard Work and Good Programming

Someone's Overheated

I wonder who...

All Nice and Tidy

With so many days of snow and more coming, John is keeping busy. Believe it or not, he's happiest when he can clear the yard without resorting to his truck and plow. Sometimes I help. More like sometimes he gives me a little pile of snow to clear as he would if I were a kid and then he gives me a little more when I get that accomplished. At least, we're out in the fresh air enjoying a bit of the day together.


With so much down time from snowstorms, I've been following the recommendations for good programs that I find here there and everywhere: from Vicki at Turkey Feathers who shared her love of the Victorian Garden and Kitchen (now regrettably removed from You Tube) to Brenda at Coffee Tea and Me who shares often about her favorite books and movies and BBC series. Having just finished up watching North and South on Brenda's recommendation, I was eager to move on to the "next thing." (North and South is available in a number of places. I watched Episode 1 on You Tube and the final episodes on TV.com with my Netflix account.)

Yesterday, I was visiting Laurie at I Love a Cloudy Day and she mentioned Wartime Farm, which I have not been successful at finding even on Netflix. There are some episodes on You Tube (here's Episode 1). While looking for Wartime Farm, I accidentally fell upon this hour-long gem about the British War time kitchen—lots of historical tidbits and good old-fashioned tips for working with very little—which takes us right back to Vicki's love of The Victorian Garden/Kitchen series because it is part of that set.

If you wish, you may watch directly at You Tube *here.* For those of us snowed in, it's a pleasant way to spend an hour with feet up, sipping tea, and learning more about these moments from history. One gets an entirely new appreciation for the way things were and all the hard work.

Have you been watching any good period pieces that you might recommend?

Love Vee

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Another Day; Another Weather Report

The plow rumbling by on all the neighborhood streets woke me this morning and I had just enough time to catch this before he came right through the house. It always sounds that way and looks a little that way, too.

The neighborhood looks more like Christmas now in February than it did 
in December.

This time it was a pretty snow that leaves tracings on the trees and the old roofs covered.

The next photos were taken yesterday in my nieces's neighborhood. She has some lovely views.

This view always looks like Narnia and the lamp post to me.

An 1800s farmhouse with attached shed and barn. This would be my favorite view if I lived at my niece's house.

I was visiting in my niece's neighborhood to feed her cat Topie who was all over me like white on snow until I fed her. Then she lost all interest in me.

Topie's story is an interesting family one. She started out as a kitten belonging to a friend of my son's. Then my son took her and gave her to my daughter. Topie had a litter of kittens while with my daughter. (Cute story: My daughter took Topie to the Vet to be spayed and was told that Topie was expecting, but that it would be no problem. My daughter promptly packed Topie back up explaining that she didn't believe in abortion.) When the kittens were born, my daughter kept one and gave Topie to my niece. Convoluted or what?! I do love all the kitties in the family. Family cats number seven in all. My son and his family have Max and Phyllis; my daughter has Samantha, daughter of my niece's cat Topie; my sister has Talitha and Lily; and I have Fioré (who oddly enough started off with my son...obviously, he has a soft spot for cats).

Have any pet stories you wish to share? 

Love Vee