You are currently viewing archive for December 2014

2014/12/26: Merry Christmas

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
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On Tuesday we celebrated Christmas with my mother and brother in Burlington. As my mom is still recovering from the broken hip I cooked a chicken dinner and baked a raspberry pie. It was very good if I say so myself. It'll take time but my mother is getting a little better everyday. I think the hardest part for her is the frustration she feels as she can't do all the things she was able to do a month ago.

With everything going on this month the house was only minimally decorated for Christmas.

The tree is easy to put up as it stays decorated all year in it's box.

The mantle was mostly cards, but it did help to bring the Christmas spirit into the house.

Zaph watched me intently as I opened his Christmas present --- a bag of dog cookies. He happily tried one.

Just after 3am this morning I looked out the window and saw a thin layer of snow on the grass. Around 6am, there was still a bit of snow but it was definitely melting. By 8am, when Ed woke up the snow was all but gone. Does this count as a white Christmas? After all the snow last winter, the cool summer and the November blizzard I'm alright with a green Christmas. In fact if we only get minimal snow this year I'll be happy.

Ed, Zaph and I took a walk down by the river. The river is high and running like it does in the spring.



The only dog that ever tried to bite Zaph was a little white fluffy dog, so he's always cautious when he sees one. He had a bit of the deer in the headlights look when he saw these three coming at him. Luckily they were friendly.

Ed and I enjoyed a lovely dinner at our friends Anne and Victor. It was a very nice though quiet Christmas Day.

2014/12/20: Open House

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
A friend's son, his wife and new baby daughter arrived home from Alberta for the Christmas holidays. My friend decided that the easiest way for people to come see her kids and granddaughter was by having an open house. We had a good visit with John, Alyssa and the star of the afternoon, Katrina.

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This is Katrina, she's just over 3 months old. Even Ed held the baby for a few minutes.

2014/12/17: Bathroom Window

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
One of the things that I have come to dislike in my home is the bathroom window ... or more specifically the lack of a bathroom window. The previous owners decided to go the glass block way.

It looked OK and it let some light in but did nothing for airing the bathroom out. We have a bathroom vent but it doesn't replace opening a window and letting the room air out.

This past summer I finally convinced Ed to let me talk to one of our neighbours whose company does windows and siding. Jim came and looked at the glass blocks and said he could replace them with a window. Finally earlier this week, Jim stopped by and said that they were ready to install the window.

It's a skinny window but I love it already and I haven't even had the opportunity to open it.

Installation wasn't quite as Jim had imagined it. The blocks were securely cemented into place and had been filled with a gas. The installation guys ended up breaking the glass blocks to get them out. Unfortunately, a big piece of glass hit the top edge of the tub taking out a chunk of the porcelain. Within a couple of days, Jim had a guy in repairing the tub. It looks good as new.

Luckily the fellow didn't mind dogs as Zaph was determined to supervise.

My mother was released from the hospital yesterday and is back in her home. She's doing pretty good and is managing with some help from my brother.

2014/12/11: Pilates

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
Last Saturday my mother broke her hip. Why a 91 year old legally blind woman thought she needed to be raking leaves is a mystery to me. Maybe in another 30 years or so I'll understand the motivation. Anyway she slipped on leaves or lost her balance and landed on the patio, breaking her hip at the top of the leg. Surgery on Sunday evening involved putting a pin into the hip. Monday saw her first tentative steps on the mended leg. Today, five days after the fall she is spending the day between sitting in a regular chair in her room or walking the halls with a walker and supervision. The staff on 2 East are impressed with her rapid recovery. Me, her daughter, believes the speedy recovery is due to 1) her will power to be better and 2) her core strength due to taking pilates 2 days a week for 2 years and a life time of exercise. Hopefully, watching my mother deal with the broken hip will strengthen my resolve to staying in shape and strengthening my core muscles.

Way to go mom!

2014/12/10: Day Trip

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
To relax after a stressful week and the fact that today is Ed and my 28th wedding anniversary we went on a day trip. Even the weather co-operated --- temperatures just above freezing and no precipitation. As part of the adventure was to be geocaching we invited Rob and Ellen to join us (I think Rob enjoys geocaching, at least he seems to).

After we hit the road, we decided on our actual destination --- Owen Sound, a city about 45 minutes drive north of us.

Just outside of Owen Sound is Inglis Falls. Ed and I have driven past it a number of times but the opportunity to stop never presented itself but today it did.

The photos don't do it justice, it was absolutely beautiful. There was lots of water flowing over the falls and lots of ice and ice cycles on the rocks. Without sun you get a nice almost black and white photo.


We tromped around the park looking for a geocache. Zaph didn't seem to care about the geocache he was just enjoying tromping through the snow in the bush.

We stopped at a fifties diner for lunch. The decor was fun and the food delicious. After checking out the breakfast menu we plan on going for breakfast one day. I can't wait to try the Elvis special --- grilled peanut butter, honey, banana, bacon sandwich.

The ferry MS Chi-Cheemaun that goes from Tobermory to Manitoulan Island winters in Owen Sound harbour. As the water was very still, Ed had some fun with photographs.

Is this up?

or is this up?

Owen Sound has a large light display (a mini Hildago for our Texas friends). As it is dark before 5pm these days we hung around Owen Sound long enough to see the lights.


We had a fun and successful day --- 11 geocaches found (Ellen found the only one she helped the guys look for.

2014/12/04: Decorated House

Category: General
Posted by: The Agnew Family
The house decorating looks a little better in the dark with the lights on.

Zaph had a rough day this week. Last winter Zaph "slab-fractured" one of his back teeth and at his check up this year the vet noticed a bit of infection. After a lot (and I mean a lot) of deliberating Ed and I decided to let the vet operate and remove the tooth. When Zaph went in for pre-op blood work we saw the surgeon for a few minutes and in that short time she noticed a couple of other fractured teeth. In the end Zaph had four teeth removed plus three roots (the tooth belong to the roots was long gone). Happily he got through surgery without any issues. Zaph has been tough on his teeth during his fourteen years. We didn't know until a couple of years ago that tennis balls are like sand paper and wear the teeth down. Anyone who knows Zaph knows he loved his tennis balls. Now he loves his "chuck-it" balls but a lot of the damage was already done. Zaph seems to be healing well and is really enjoying the canned dog food. He better not get to use to the canned food because it's incredibly expensive -- Ed calculated that it would cost over $300 a month. Zaph is recovering well and I'm sure I'll be posting photos of him playing soon.