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2010/10/31: Happy Halloween

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
On the road again heading west. Glenn and I had looked at the map and he had shown me a couple of alternate routes that were good to get us to Albuquerque, New Mexico. Ed and I listened to the weather and decided we would take the route across the middle of Kansas to Colorado Springs, Colorado then south to Santa Fe and on to Albuquerque. Kansas and Colorado are states we havenít seen so we thought this would give us a taste of both states. Todayís drive took us through Illinois to Missouri, across Missouri to Kansas City and into Kansas. I was surprised when we drove through an area of rolling hills in Kansas as I always thought that Kansas was flat. We spent the night in Hays, Kansas at a Walmart.

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The Mississippi River

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Bridge over the Mississippi

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Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
We decided to stay another day and visit. Mount Sterlingís main employers are the prison and Dot Foods, a food distribution centre. Lindaís daughter, Stacy wanted to go to the Dot Foods store so I tagged along. I restrained myself best as I could but did buy a few things as the deals were too good to pass up. We also visited a few antique stores. Linda sells at antique shows and flea markets so is always on the look out for bargains she can resell. Maybe I'll be able to figure out good deals if I visit lots of antique stores. After dinner out with Glenn, Linda, her children and their spouses and Harold and Maryanne (another couple from the RV park who are very good friends of Glenn and Linda) we played cards. It was a simple version of poker based on odds ---- Glen, Linda, Ed and I didn't do so good and Stacy went home the big winner. Zaph, of course, had a wonderful time playing with Gypsy and the grandchildren. Canít believe that I didnít take any pictures.

2010/10/29: Mount Sterling

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
Mount Sterling, Illinois is our destination. This is where our neighbours, Glenn, Linda and Gypsy, at the RV park in Texas live when theyíre not in Texas. We were invited to park at their house. Iím not good at remembering birthdays and had no idea that tomorrow is Lindaís 65th. Linda was happy to have us crash and included us in the celebrations. Tonight there was a wiener roast at Chrisís house (her eldest son). We met Lindaís three children, most of her grandchildren, a couple of nieces and nephews, a brother and a sister. Now Iíll be able to put faces on the people when Linda is talking about her family. Havenít been to a wiener roast in a long time and it was a lot of fun.

2010/10/28: On the Road

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
Ed decided that he would get up at the regular time (8 am --- he thinks thatís dawn) and drive a bit later in the evening as the plan is to stay in a Walmart campground (parking lot). 12:30 pm on a Thursday was a great time to cross the border. Two vehicles were in front of us at the toll booth and another two were in front of us at the border crossing. After a few standard questions the customs agent asked for the keys and went into the trailer. Everything must have been fine as he returned the keys, our passports and told us to have a nice trip. It took less than 10 minutes to cross the border with the trailer --- thatís got to be a record. Spent the night in Indianapolis at a very nice Walmart.

2010/10/27: One Sleep to Go

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
All packed and ready to go but happy weíre not leaving till tomorrow as our local area has high wind warnings today and it is really windy. The trailer was really shaking went I went out to put something in it and it's in a protected spot. Itís nice to have time to walk Zaph and read a book.

2010/10/26: Two Sleeps to Go

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
Lots to do today. Finish packing the trailer, clean the house (I know in 5 months itís going to be dusty but at least itíll be tidy), wash the car, listen to the weather report, etc. Weather is not great today. High wind warnings and tornado watches in southern Ontario, Illinois and Michigan so weíve decided to leave a day later. Cable company is too efficient as the service man arrived just after 9 am to disconnect the cable, we were hoping that we would have cable for most of the day.

(Finally have internet access so I'm catching up 11/03)

2010/10/25: Two Sleeps to Go

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
Did once last visit to Burlington on the Saturday though it was a short one as we also attended a 25th anniversary party for Gwen and Bob. As Gwen and Bob's house is modest in size there were not a lot of people invited, mostly relatives and a few friends. It was very nice though because if I didn't know them I new all about them. We also got to meet John's girlfriend who is a very nice young lady.

The packing of the trailer has started in earnest. I'm hoping to get my share of the packing done today, well except for the essentials we'll need for the last day / night. That will leave me with Tuesday to clean the house and hopefully attend one last class of Tai Chi.

2010/10/21: The Count Down is On

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
Six days and counting .... well at least that's the target date for heading south. Life has been trying to slow us down --- Zaph's eye problem, my computer needing to be replaced, Ed's cold (hope I don't catch it and hope he gets better soon).

Last Sunday evening I turned my laptop on and couldn't see the screen, rebooted and still couldn't read the screen --- yes I checked the contrast etc. Turned out the "luminator" (that's what Ed called it) died. It's a six year old computer so we didn't even attempt to look for parts. By plugging in an external monitor I was able to get everything I needed off of the hard drive. I am now the proud owner of a new HP laptop that I think we've got up and running with everything I'll need for the winter.

We had early Christmas dinner at Anne & Victor's house. Another great meal Anne! I got up to get my camera and looked out the window. To my amazement there were four deer walking out of the field onto the lawn. The sun was setting and we were in the house so the pictures aren't great.

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Zaph enjoying his Christmas present from Anne and Victor.

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Happy Boy, Anne spoils him.

2010/10/16: Catch Up Once Again.

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
I had good intentions of keeping the blog up to date and have failed already. Hopefully, once we are on the road I'll do a better job, well except for the first week or so when we'll be depending on campgrounds for Internet access.

Canadian Thanksgiving has come and gone. What a perfect weekend this year. My mom, brother and friends Louise and Les drove up from Burlington to spend the Sunday with us and help eat turkey with all the trimmings. The trees were in their full colourful glory giving them pretty scenery during the drive.

On the Thanksgiving weekend Saturday I had a fun experience of taking my friend Gwen to a store which is now near the top of her list of great stores --- maybe it's number one. Gwen is an avid quilter and sewer and yet had never been to a Len's Mill store. It was wonderful watching her face when finished walking past the miscellaneous goods area and step into the fabric section. There are at least 20 rows (each row is at least 20 feet long) of cotton and cotton polyester fabric, then there's the specialty fabrics and the upholstery fabrics, curtains fabrics, buttons, trims ..... well you get the picture. Gwen was very happy finding this store less than an hour from her home.

Zaph has been getting a lot of attention the last week or so as he's been wearing his sunglasses when we walk on a sunny day. He had his picture taken several times, was given cookies because he was so cute, told he was "too cool for school" and was the source of many laughs and smiles. The poor guy has an ulcer on his cornea and is getting eye drops to treat it so his eye needs protection when he's out in the sun. The ulcer appears to be healing and will hopefully be healed soon.

The town of Orangeville is approximately half way between Walkerton and Toronto so it was deemed a good meeting place for us and Ed's sister Sonya. A woman Sonya works with recommended The Greystones Inn --- very nice place and I would recommend it as well. Good food, good atmosphere, good service. Sonya started a new job at the end of September and was telling us all about it --- sounds like she's really enjoying it.

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
This is the last of my mom's birthday celebrations this year. I guess as you get older you don't mind being reminded of your birthday over and over and over. We had lunch at one of my mom's favourite restaurants. This one is in St. Jacobs in the heart of Mennonite country. Benjamin's is in an old building and our party was just the right size to get the private room.

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Blowing out the candle --- obviously my mom.

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My mom and her sister To. Tanta To is going to turn 90 in January. Good genes in their family.

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The sisters with To's grandson Jeffery.

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The sisters with their niece Yvonne and her husband Bob.

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The sisters with my brother Dave.

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The sisters with To's daughter Janet and her son Jeffery.

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The sisters with Ed and myself.

2010/10/02: Pumpkinfest

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
The first weekend in October brings us Pumpkinfest in Port Elgin. The main street and some of the side streets are filled with vintage cars and motorbikes. The high school is the location of the pumpkin festivities which include a craft show, weighing of the pumpkins, carnival rides, bird of prey show, camel rides and of course lots of junk food. A still young friend from my high school days has a booth at the craft show so Anne and I went to the high school to partake in the activities there and visit my friend while Ed and Victor toured the car show. Anne and I were quicker so we joined the guys and got to see a lot of the cars. This is always a nice day and happily the weather held --- no rain for Port Elgin.

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Some of the pumpkins. I think the middle one was heaviest though they were still weighing pumpkins when we walked through. Did you know that to grow one of these large pumpkins you need to water it 24 hours a day?

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The motor bike is a 2007 but the trailer is vintage ... don't remember the year.

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I love the front grill of this car. The car looks like it could be the star in a Stephen King movie.

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This cute little car is an Isetta. The entire front of the car is the door, even the steering wheel swings out of the way. The Isetta was manufactured by many different companies in the 50's and 60's. This one was manufactured by BMW.
Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
When we get home in the spring I create a "to do" of the things I would like to accomplish over the summer. As the summer passes it shrinks and grows until hopefully it is empty. I just have a couple of items left on the list and they are both 90% done so I think I'll leave with an empty list ..... unfortunately I've already started next years list.

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One of the items on this year's list was to fix up the "basement kitchen". It's really a work area where paint and other stuff is stored and the dirty clean up happens (i.e. washing out paint brushes, etc.). The cupboards were painted blue and green, the counter top was painted grey, cupboard doors on the right side of the room were painted white and had painted door frames. Turned out the doors weren't even square and the cupboard at the end of the counter stuck out into the room making for a very narrow entrance. It took a lot more work than we expected but it looks great now .... at least I think so.

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Last fall I had purchased material to make a quilt while I was in Texas last winter. Didn't happen. Finally I got my butt in gear and the quilt top is almost done ... one border to go. When I told Ed I'm going to quilt it over the winter he just laughed. That might be enough incentive to get it done.