A Haven for Vee

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Wednesday Hodge Podge

 Let's Get Started...


1. Do you have a sister? Tell us something about her. If you don't have a sister, tell us about a friend who has been like a sister. Or tell us about a sister-in-law if you have one who is extra special. 

2. Resister, assister, insister, persister...choose one of the words listed and explain how it relates to you and your life lately. 

3. Share a favorite song, book, movie, or television program that features sisters.

4. August 3rd is national watermelon day...are you a fan? Do you like watermelon flavored candy? Besides eating the melon as is, do you have a good recipe made with watermelon? 

5. 'Tis August...what are three things you're looking forward to this month? 

6. Insert your own random thought here. 


1. Yes, I have a sister who shows up from time to time here on the blog. If you peek in the "Who" folder in my sidebar, you'll see her photos. And her grands who are four years old and two years old are also there. (It's lovely to have little folks in the family again.) We have weekly visits when life allows. On Wednesdays as it so happens. Alas, illness struck this week. 

My sister has been a great blessing to me in my health journey often taking me to doctor appointments, hair appointments, and grocery shopping. She has also done laundry, dishes, and cleaning.  Sometimes it helps to have a nurse in the family. ツ

2. Resister—one must be willing to resist in this bizarre day and age. Whenever possible, I throw sand into the mechanism, if needed. No, I am not explaining.

3. Little Women, of course. I am thinking that this will be the number one response. 




Go out more, keep cheerful as well as busy, for you are the sunshine-maker of the family, and if you get dismal there is no fair weather.

Louisa May Alcott, Little Women


4. Yes, I love watermelon. No, I do not enjoy watermelon flavored anything. No, I have no recipes that employ watermelon in the ingredients list.


5. Picnics, Picnics, Picnics



6. Many random thoughts wander about in my old head. Coming in for a landing would be too much of a challenge today. Trust me! 


Thank you for reading. Please join Joyce *here.* 

Friday, July 29, 2022

Tea (Iced these days of course) and Toast


When the girl returned, some hours later, she carried a tray, with a cup of fragrant tea steaming on it; and a plate piled up with very hot buttered toast, cut thickly, very brown on both sides, with the butter running through the holes in it in great golden drops, like honey from the honeycomb. ~Kenneth Grahame from Wind in the Willows 


These days, all recipes need to be quick and easy and since I like nothing better than toasted bread, this one from *Celebrating Appalachia* was perfect. The minute Tipper mentioned "grilled jelly sandwiches" I was all ears. I had never eaten one before; I had never even heard of it before.  


This is how mine turned out. 









 


Perfectly Scrumptious!

 

πŸ’žπŸ’žπŸ’žπŸ’žπŸ’ž

Seven years ago, my grandsons, John, and I visited Quaker Ridge. I was wondering about that yesterday when my sister and her grands and I enjoyed a picnic there once again. Sis's grandson is on antibiotics and so they had to be careful of sun exposure. No beach! The hilltop proved to be the most perfect of summer days. It was a full ten degrees cooler than in the valley with pleasant breezes and beautiful cloud formations. The children enjoyed themselves tremendously and so did I.



 

Thank you for popping by. Let me know how your summer is going!


Love,

Vee

 

Monday, July 4, 2022

Some Thoughts on Independence Day 2022

I am an American. I recognize only one loyalty higher than allegiance to our flag — faith in God. I acknowledge that America and God, the physical and the spiritual, are inseparable. America was founded by people of faith and grew to greatness by His grace. I pray that we will always be the instruments of His will.

I am an American. I weep over the fact that American history is no longer taught in our schools. In its place is a worldly, cynical skepticism inculcated by authors and educators at war with our basic values.I am an American. I cringe at the collection of connivers, cowards, clowns and quacks that passes for our political leadership. I wonder that so many of my compatriots have no idea what America means and show no gratitude for the blessings that are theirs.I am an American. My ranks grow thin; the night closes in. Whether I will be the last of my kind or the vanguard of their resurgence, only time will tell.”~Don Feder


 



A blessed Independence Day!



 

Thursday, June 30, 2022

Peeking In

tempus locus veritas      

(Time reveals the truth) 


Laurel's Rose


One of my hopes for these times is that the truth will be revealed. 

Golly! Is it the last day of June? Unbelievable. June has been a rough month for a few of us. I am praying mightily. I know a number of us are dealing with health issues. God is good and He hears us when we pray.

I spent the month hobbling about using canes. Nothing like a torn hamstring to lay a person low. Last night, Laurel informed me that she has been diagnosed with Shingles. Good heavens! 

So the 4th of July may become the 20th of July for our family. In the meantime, I am wishing you and yours a blessed 4th, in spite of everything.

Love,

Vee

Comments are closed today because this post is a formatting mess and I am frustrated. 😏

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Closing Out May

This post is being written on the Sunday evening before Memorial Day. I am not sad to see May go. I have explained my challenge with May before so will spare you another explanation. 


At this point in my blogging journey, I am documenting life like a journal. I used to think that this blog would not be a diary of daily details. Right. Silly me. I wanted to talk about books, current events, and ideas. Instead, I am too worried about what you think so I post current events comments on a back page. As for books, others do a beautiful job reviewing books. Ideas, I haven't had any lately. 


An overview of my dining and kitchen area. Now that's one thing I know better: this is not a pretty home blog where style is the thing. ッ




There have been a few current events. If you read a few years ago where the paper mill in town burned down, the owner has finally gotten around to the removal of the remnants. I caught the action when the last wall was standing. Cleanup is in progress.


Any old year at all, you can find the same sorts of images here. It was exhausting washing all the fence plates so I packed up a lot of them. Apparently, all that talk of decluttering has finally reached my consciousness.




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The poem below was marked by John; I found it just last week. It blessed me. So like John, too. 


John and Jim

He didn't do much for Jim, perhaps,
 When he met him yesterday.
It wasn't much for John to do,
 As he hurried along life's way. 
Yet, oh, what a help it was to Jim,
 John probably never will know,
For John's on top, while Jim is down,
 And figures the world's his foe.
His friends, he thinks, have turned away,
 And some may have, that's true,
But some are loyal; they just don't know,
 The trouble he's wading through.
So yesterday, when John met Jim,
 And stopped for a glad, "hello,"
And grasped his hand and talked a bit,
 If just for a moment or so,
And told him how good it seemed again
 To see him, and have a chat,
About old times, they used to know,
 Of fishing, and this and that,
It wasn't so much for John to do,
 Not much, perhaps, to him, 
But he'll never know, what a help it was,
 And what it did for Jim. 
                       ~Orrin Alden DeMass

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I am tossing in a few Memorial Day photos. My family was invited to my sister's place. Adam and Michelle, Sam, Jake and I rode over together. I very much appreciated hitching a ride. Laurel had to work. Bummer. Keanne was in New York. Also a bummer. The rest of us enjoyed a good afternoon.





Playing Ball and Bouncing 








Horse Chestnut Tree and Blooms


Thank you for visiting! 


The End


Love,

Vee
















Friday, April 29, 2022

April in Maine

 Still brown. And that's nearly all that I have to say about that. Warming is slow coming. The grass is looking rough. One good thing: the forsythia is beginning to bloom. 





You will have to look closely!


The last of my mountain of 
snow, created by the plow clearing my driveway, melted a week ago. It left a lot of winterkill in its wake. 

I have slowly done my own yard work this year. I spend about an hour each morning sweeping, blowing, raking with good results. It eventually gets accomplished. Even the town crew has been along removing and cleaning all those piles of sand on the street's edge.

The winds of March blew all through March and straight through April. I have heard a lot about these winds from all across the country. I am not a fan of wind. It was blistering cold yesterday and it is even colder today. Snow showers are expected for tomorrow, the final day of April.



Porch Rocker Tipped


We should have celebrated a birthday last weekend, but schedules didn't work out so we'll be celebrating this weekend. I'm looking forward to that. A gal has to get out of the house once in a while. It will be the first time this April birthday will have been honored in May.

Easter Sunday, Laurel and I met at a local steakhouse for a delicious dinner. Afterward, when she walked me to my car, she exclaimed, "Mom, your car registration is way overdue. And so is your inspection." So I had those chores to tidy up in the week that followed. I really am slipping. Say, does your state require you to register your car yearly and have an inspection? The cost for the inspection was $12.50; the cost for the registration was $140.00. I consider the registration an extra tax that is unnecessary and punitive.

What else do I have to share? 

Nothing.

I will try to catch a photo or two at the birthday party. I should not make these promises. Everyone in my family hates photos. ッ 

Thank you for reading. (I see that I have titles worked out for the next few months.)

Here's to brighter days ahead!


Love,

Vee

Wednesday, March 30, 2022

March in Maine

 The color of March in my valley is brown...

~ Gladys Taber


Yes, mine, too, Gladys. Brown and ugly. Very.   




Back Yard

Rhubarb is Up

Front Yard

It would be tempting to whine a little. Okay, I may be pouting some.


Still I have a crockpot with a pot roast simmering on the counter. Thank you, Kitty. My son and his boys are going to enjoy a delicious meal tonight. πŸ™


And I have guests coming for lunch. Yippee! It's so cold today that the fake fire will be crackling. 


Warmer days are coming. ツ

Love,

Vee


 

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Possible Post and More

 Let's see if I can make sense of today's entry. I am always looking for blog worthy topics. I was looking for the recipe for the bread below because I prefer it to soda bread. It is, after all, time for such things. 

Tea-Soaked Raisin Tea Brack

Why, yes! I do love butter!


For whatever reason, writing is not as easy for me as it once was. So imagine my surprise when I found the post below hiding in a notebook just ahead of the recipe for the bread named above. How perfectly serendipitous.  I wrote the post in June of 2018. I'm using it today.  And what a title!

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Possible Post


You and I are not what we eat; we are what we think.


                                                           ~Walter Anderson




Did you ever stop to think, and forget to start again?

                                                          

                              ~Winnie the Pooh 



As so often happens, I find a new think to think every time I read my favorite blogs. This time it was about thought itself: what do I find myself thinking about? I had never truly considered it, but now that I have, I am surprised, even shocked. 


Perhaps the few things I share may also shock you. Perhaps you'll try paying attention to your own thought life. I was once told that if we could be privy to other's thoughts, we would be frightened to death. I believe it. 


For starters, I do not think in complete sentences. No. I think in little snatches of thoughts, sometimes in pictures.


I am something like the White Rabbit who runs along looking at his watch saying, "I'm late. I'm late for a very important date." 


"I've got to get going. Get going. Do something. Move. Move. Get going." Apparently, I am cracking a little whip on myself much of the time. 


Sometimes I practice double think especially while reading, watching tv or listening to the radio. This may or may not be productive. Double think is a simple repeating of what is heard or read. "Many wonderful choices" is a fragment of a commercial, for example, that has been running through my head for about twenty minutes.


There's also a fair amount of negative self-talk. Guard that stuff! I'll be paying closer attention. 


"Ouch. Ouch. Ouchie" figures prominently in my thought life. Lots of pain as I grow older...pain upon rising, bending, climbing stairs, you get the picture and may be able to relate.


"Oh John. Oh Mom. Oh, Oh, Oh."  Well this bit goes without saying.


My prayer life is greatly reduced... sometimes only "Dear Lord." Then my wee little mind wanders off to some far less important thing.


                         And what blogger caused me to ponder all this? 

Linda B! She wonders why she is not giving God the praise that He so richly deserves. I've been wondering the same thing. Obviously, I am much too busy with my fascinating thought life. 😏


You can find her post *here.*



Happy summer! 



Psalm 139


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Recipe for Tea-Soaked Raisin Tea Brack



Tea-Soaked Raisin Tea Brack


1 cup raisins

1 cup strongly brewed tea

2 cups all-purpose flour

3 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

¾ cup brown sugar, packed

¼ teaspoon nutmeg

½ teaspoon cinnamon

1 egg 

Rolled oats for sprinkling


Brew one cup of tea. Pour over raisins in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate overnight or 8 hours. 


Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl. Create a well in the center of the flour mixture. Pour in the egg, raisins, and tea. Stir until just combined. Do not overmix. Then, pour into a prepared loaf pan. Sprinkle rolled oats on the top of the loaf. 


Place loaf in an oven that has been preheated to 350 degrees. Bake until the top is browned, about 1½ hours. (Mine was done in 1 hour and twenty minutes.) When done, cool slightly and remove from loaf pan. Allow to complete cooling on a wire rack. 


(This recipe was amended from the one listed in my Recipe Box in the sidebar.)


Have a blessed week and a wonderful St. Patrick's Day!


Love,

Vee


Monday, February 28, 2022

A Brief Hello

It's now or never—last day of February and, if I hope to keep up with this break neck speed of one post a month, I need to put a word or two down. I think I'll close comments, though, because I don't want anyone to try coming up with something when I am offering so little. 

February was quite cold and snowy. "It's Maine, it's winter," says my sister if I dare mention that it is cold or snowy. We did have a wonderful hint of spring a week or more ago with temps warming to 60° for a few days. Lots of snow melted. Now it is frigid and there's been more snow so the incessant dripping will happen all over again. Probably three times. 

Usually on Wednesdays I have visitors. They climb my snow mountains and linger for lunch. My sister has become a covid grandmother like thousands of others. God bless them. Here are a few pics IF the platform will upload them. We'll see. 




Thanks for stopping in. I will try to do better in March. Maybe. 


Love,

Vee





Wednesday, January 19, 2022

National Popcorn Day Et Cetera

 1. It's National Popcorn Day-my favorite! Are you a fan? Sweet or salty? A good or great movie you've seen recently (at home or in a theater, either one)? 

2. What's something you didn't realize was going to take so much of your time as an adult? 

3. Your favorite yellow something? 

4. Why do you write? 

5. Share a favorite memory associated with snow.

6. Insert your own random thought here. 




1. Yes, I like popcorn a lot. My favorite is buttery so guess that best translates to salty. 




The movie I watched recently on Netflix that I have since thought about more than a little bit is The Professor and the Madman with Mel Gibson and Sean Penn.  

2. Home care or really the care of all those things for which I am responsible from the house to the car to the lawnmower. Sometimes, I can toss myself in there as well. Maintenance takes effort. 

3. Yellow is my favorite color. Some yellows are nicer than others, I think. My preference is a buttery yellow over a lemon yellow. Yellow roses are delightful, lemony or buttery doesn't matter.  

4.  Lately I write because I am ashamed not to. I have become one of those bloggers that I used to poke requesting a new entry on their blogs. Did I ever poke you? Please forgive me. 

5. Snow is king here in Maine for many months of the year. Now that I am olden, I definitely have many snow memories; however, why reinvent the wheel? Tobogganing Over Snowy Roads remains my favorite.

6. It is unwise to wish time away, still I am very pleased that we already are this far through January. Winter months are harsh and dreary and I am always looking forward to spring. 

Thanks to Joyce for coming up with this week's questions. You can find Joyce and the other participants here at  From This Side of the Pond

Love, 

Vee

Saturday, January 1, 2022

Smitten

 


The amaryllis bloomed again in time for the new year. I am totally smitten by this gorgeous plant. Next year, if there is a next year, I'll pick up a waxed one so that I don't have to fret so over watering or not watering. Above is the new flower blooming. Below the final photo on the bottom right shows the first flower and, if you look closely, you can see the second stalk growing up beside the first stalk...just a wee thing. 

So, if I believed in signs (I don't), I'd take this as a good one for the new year.ッ


A blessed 2022 to you!

Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Christmas 2021

Darkness is cheap, and Scrooge liked it.

My son may have felt that that was my story as I explained to him just last week why I was sitting in the dark without turning on my Christmas tree lights. After a bit more conversation between us, he looked at me intently and asked, "Mom, are you all right?"

No, I really was not. Two years of this covid scare + a year of this joke of a president=one grumpy, annoyed woman. I needed Christmas in the worst way.


Early in December, this arrangement arrived from LL Bean courtesy of Laurel. It smelled so fresh and Christmasy. I used the ribbon Mary gave me to wind through it and called it good. 


Then, for the first time, I purchased an amaryllis bulb and was pleasantly surprised when it actually bloomed and is about to bloom again.


There were a few ice storms this month and a couple of snowstorms. Snow fell gently most of Christmas day.


Since I did not feel like decorating the tree, I used candy canes and Christmas cards to fill it out. 



The overstuffed chair holding Christmas gifts needing to be wrapped. The poinsettia was a gift from the Garden Center because I spent too much money there.
 

The poinsettia, the amaryllis ready to bloom again and a lovely lap quilt gift from a dear friend.

My grandsons Jake and Sam had chairs to sit in on Christmas Day. Now that they are adult sized, they appreciate those kinds of things. I hope Sam wasn't watching a spider. 



Michelle and Adam tend to gifts with only a box of fir tips behind them. I remember the year I had the crockpot behind them and it snapped and crackled all afternoon.


At day's end, I wanted to document how tall Sam has become so used Aunt Laurel as a comparison.



Laurel gave me this pretty Christmas card with a message that doesn't fit me at all, but makes me wish that it did. 


Now that Christmas has arrived, I am perfectly willing to let it continue right through January 6. I am slow to the party, but once it starts, I am all warmed up and ready to enjoy the season. I must remember this. 

Love,
Vee