A Haven for Vee

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Movie for a Rainy Day

Lift not the painted veil which those who live
Call life... 
~ Percy Bysshe Shelley

The Painted Veil is a 2006 movie starring Ed Norton and Naomi Watts. It is based on the novel by W. Somerset Maugham. 

It was a rare rainy day this month when a movie seemed like just the thing. This one is currently on my Netflix stream, though I understand offerings vary depending on location.  

The movie felt gloomy and dark, and I liked it quite well. I like movies where people wake up and become aware of their own sin. I like redemption and forgiveness stories and this was all that. It was a movie where themes can be pondered and reflected upon. Very good when one is in a certain frame of mind. 

Caution: Not much language, but some nudity. 

That's all I have to chatter about today. Have you seen it? What did you think? Have a better recommendation? I am ready to hang out in a freezing movie theater. ☺

Stay cool now...

Monday, July 11, 2016

Hilarious Multi-Tasking Grandson

The week following John’s passing found me attending two baseball games for each grandson. I had promised to attend home games and all four were home games.

In hindsight, I am sure that this was good for me as I tend to isolate in difficult patches so, yes, it was good to get out of the house.

Besides, Jakob was going to prove to be a great blessing at one of his games bringing so much laughter and joy to everyone watching. His team was playing their game on a field right next door to the annual dance competition for Homecoming Days. Jake was playing second base. Do you know where this is going?

When the music started, and it was some catchy music, too, Jake began to dance. Yes! Right there on second base for all the world to see! He was really busting a move as they say.   His parents might have wanted the earth to open and swallow them, but they couldn’t help but laugh along with the rest of us. Hilarious! He was dancing and still stopping the ball and getting runners out on first…multi-tasking at its finest.

<The video has been removed—bummer! 
It was Little Eva - Loco-motion>

The inning finally ended and Jake received the beckoning finger from his dad. I took the photo below as they chatted behind the dugout. I heard Jake state his case —"But, Dad! The music! Everyone would want to dance to that music!" His father's response went something like this: Yes, well, Jake, you're not here to dance; you're here to play ball.

Properly chastened, Jake went on about his business waiting in the line-up for his turn at bat. The game was running about 12 to 0 or something truly disheartening like that. Once at bat, Jakob had a very good eye and refused to swing at the dud pitches so he was walked to first, stole second, survived a squeeze play between second and third, and, when the ball was seriously fumbled, he made a beeline for home scoring the only run of the game for his team.

When the game ended, one of the coaches said, “By virtue of the fact that Jakob scored the only run of the game, he may dance on second base any time he wants!” =D

What fun! I miss those baseball games, but summer is well into July and the grands have moved on to other pursuits...

Sunday, July 10, 2016

This Is Home


♪I have come too far and I won't go back...♪

I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:14

Friday, July 8, 2016

Lest I Forget

Yes, I am already worried. Worried that I will forget my beloved's voice, the way he sang In the Garden in his deep, rumbly voice and often while driving. The way he chuckled, the way he laughed, the squeaky little laugh done just to amuse me.

So I am jotting down a few things to help me remember. 

John never left the house without kissing me goodbye and sometimes more than once, especially when we would start chatting all over again with his hand on the handle attempting to get out the door. Then I'd get another kiss because he couldn't remember if he had kissed me the first time. I never told him otherwise. As he was leaving, he'd say, "I'll be back." Sometimes I'd say, "Thanks for the warning!" Then we'd both laugh at the lame joke.

He never arrived home without an "I'm back" and most often another kiss or a hug depending on how dirty he was. Oh that man could get more dirt on him than a mechanic in a pit. Sometimes I'd grumble about it and he would respond, "Now is that a very nice thing to say to a very nice guy like me?" 

When he finished a project he'd say, "There! Good enough for who it's for." I tried to get him to say it Here, but he just wouldn't cooperate that day. ☺
(Look for the video and the little bow John took.)

If I asked him how his meal was, he would usually say, "I don't know yet." There was never a time that he did not thank me for making his meals or changing his sheets or taking care of his clothes.

If I ever asked him to do anything, he was in agreement. Sometimes we had to set a date and an intention, but he was willing to go and do as I requested. Sometimes I had some unusual requests that "stretched his thinking all out of whack."

Evenings were usually spent companionably watching Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy. (I haven't watched since May 20.) He trounced me night after night only requesting my help for literature and grammar questions. ☺ For the final Jeopardy question, we would decide if we were going to "bet the farm." We often won. It is true that two heads are better than one.  After that, he usually wished to watch some show about Alaska; I'll never watch that again either.

~typical grand greeting~ 

When seeing the grandsons, he'd ask, "How's my buddy?!" They always knew that they were his buds, too. This often involved a high-five and sometimes he requested a hug and they willingly gave him one. He sure loved them and I can see the love light in his eyes for them that I often saw for myself. Here's a good example.

He prayed for the boys every day.
But then, he prayed for many every single day — his girls, his grands, his greats, his sisters, his friends, my friends, my family, me, and on and on. He really enjoyed praying for people and was happy to have remembered to pray and for what the specific need or concern was.

He had plans to write a book of his favorite tips for contracting/carpentering. He had even sketched out the chapters. He wanted to put in a new driveway, new counter tops in the kitchen, new floors, and probably a few other things; alas, time ran out. My son said the other day that John needed at least another twenty years.

Whenever situations arose that would make me say, "This is something we must pray about," he would say, "Oh dear, it's come to this." That was a joke indicating that it was ridiculous not to think about praying first about anything and everything. 

taken in April 2016, at a Retirement Party for a Dear Friend
You may remember a similar expression worn  Here

Oh there must be more; I can't have forgotten already. Wait! I remember another...one of my favorites. Every now and then I'd catch him looking at me and so I'd smile and he would say, "You're kinda cute (pause for emphasis) for a girl." 

This would have been our 8th anniversary...new beginnings. John began his ultimate new beginnings just six weeks ago. His sister gently chided me recently that there is no marriage in Heaven. Right. I know that. It won't matter there. But here, just for today, Happy Anniversary, Honey. I miss you like crazy.

Where you used to be, there is a hole in the world, which I find myself constantly walking around in the daytime, and falling in at night. I miss you like...

~Edna St. Vincent Millay
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
Revelation 21:4

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Changes in the Neighborhood

Probably you have noticed that I like my kitchen window just a titch. I like to decorate the sill and look out upon my little view. You may remember a view something like this—bushes that flower in spring and a cute, shabby, little shed. The home you see there is way across the lower street from which mine turns. 

Oh I did love that view! Charming, New Englandy, dear.

This is how it looks today.

The best thing about it is that a local pastor has moved his parents to this new home.  I know that it will look better one day when it is completed and there is more landscaping added. (Note the shabby little shed is still there. Wonder if they'll take it down.) So while I do not like the new view nearly as well as the former one, I do like the reason for the change.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

A Family Fourth

It was a different sort of a 4th of July for our family and a very good one. 

For longer than I care to count, my family has been planning a get-together with dear and long-time friends of ours. Get-togethers used to be oh so simple when we were just two young couples and our children. With the passing of time, eight have become 20. Another daughter born, and four of the five children now married with children of their own. So today was a happening. It was just what the grandsons 

needed — lots of kids and lots of fun. Auntie Laurel simply stretched her wings and became an auntie for the day to all the kid crowd. She does love to plan fun things for children and then she plays, too, which they really love. There was water balloon fun, wiffle ball, streamer tag, walks to see the ocean and the ospreys, and a great game of kickball that even the grown-ups participated in. Well, not the oldest generation of grown-ups. Instead, we sat around chatting about our lumbago. ☺

Good thing that my friends and I left it with the kids to arrange. That, obviously, made it more likely to happen. Facebook made it easy. It really was a great day and I am so happy that nearly all made it. Only one had another engagement that could not be missed. I am also sorry that John missed it because how he would have loved it, too.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Happy Independence Day!

Beautiful images...it touches all the bases!

A wonderful day to all my fellow citizens of the United States and a wonderful day around the world — A peaceful day, a free day, a better day, a day blessed by God.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Looks Can Be Deceiving

First scheduled for May 24, 2016

Recently, I showed a lake scene where John and I had enjoyed a fast food lunch. My friend Mrs. T suggested that the lake could be Sebago Lake. Now Sebago is a fairly large lake in my corner, not as large as Rangeley or Moosehead, but large for these parts. What I actually showed was a pond. Mrs. T suggested that I must be laughing at her expense. Oh, no, not at all. I know that looks can be deceiving

~the pond~
You may remember my mentioning that my mother found this blog terribly amusing, and not for all the right reasons. She found it amusing because she thought my photographs made my home look far more pleasant than it actually was/is. Guilty as charged. There are precious few times when I  show you things as they are. I prefer to put a bit of a shine on it.

~the azaleas bloomed again after their serious pruning last year~

See? I cut the whole house nearly out of it! ☺ If I could have figured out a way to grow green grass in the brown patches, I would have. By the way, is it not lovely how I make my entire neighbor's lawn look like my own? I suppose that there are eight or ten feet beyond the daffodil that are mine, but that's all.

Here's another. You don't suppose that there's really a stream of gold in the ravine, do you? Oh that there were!

Lastly, I'd like to offer my new profile picture as an example. I am simply loving the picture that Donna took of the two of us. I knew that I couldn't do any better, so I cropped her out of it and used it for my own devious purposes. (Another case of begging forgiveness rather than requesting permission.) 

~former profile picture~

My former profile picture just looked so...so... well, so danged old.  I don't know what Donna did, but she must have run us through every filter known to man three times over. Of my new profile photo, my mother might have said, "Accckkk...who's that?!" On the other hand, John rather likes it. At least, I've stopped being a tea cup or a chipmunk or a six-year-old for a while. Oh, Ellen, do we need to chat? 

What do you think of facelifts, real or otherwise? 

Friday, July 1, 2016

An Empty Plate

First scheduled for May 27, 2016, I skipped over a few 
scheduled posts for this one because strawberries may be on everyone's North American weekend menu with the holidays both Canada and the US are celebrating. Long may freedom ring!


An empty plate can be a lovely thing...

but that is not what a plate is for! *

Oh my! This was so delicious! John even decided that a strawberry pie could be a nice change from strawberry shortcake. At our house, that's big news. You can find this recipe at Kitty's

* All due apologies to Mr. Shedd who once said, "A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for."