Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Medical Notes

Our brother has got a knee. He went down when clearing up after the recent ice storm that hit the north-east USA a couple of weeks ago. The medics reckon it could be a torn meniscus, which might mean an op. Anyhow, get well soon.

Here’s a link to some of the pics he took of the ice storm – presumably before the injury.

Our mum has got a knee too. She had another steroid injection today, and the latest news from the GP is that if there isn’t any improvement a replacement knee might be the solution. Well, whatever works.

Ava's Diary

I know, it’s been a while since I’ve blogged but, hey, I’ve been busy.

It’s been very busy at the crèche for the past few weeks, as we’ve been rehearsing for our Christmas concert. Such was the demand that we had to do three shows. I had the important role of “a star” which meant sitting on stage and shaking my sleigh bells. Which I did very well.

We had a photographer visit the crèche too. And you can see a scan of the results here. I reckon I scrub up pretty well.

Last week was a first for me. Charlene, my assistant at the crèche, babysat for me when mam and dad went up to Ebbw Vale foe dinner with Jon and B. I didn’t play up too much ‘cos I like Charlene a lot.

My crawling is moving forward. Well, actually, its mostly me crawling backwards. Which means I tend to back myself into corners and then get wedged.

On Saturday I met Santa. I was surprised that he had time to be at Tredegar House, what with have to make a list and then checking it twice. Anyway, I’m looking forward to spending Christmas with nanna and gramps in Swansea, where I will be spoiled rotten.

Mele Kalikimaka

For me, this is the Christmas song of 2008. KT Tinstall's version has been all over the radio for the past few weeks, but this is the original Bing version as featured in National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, one of the best Christmas films ever.

Rugby Notes

Ebbw Vale had a comfortable win up in North Wales on the weekend, and, no, I didn’t go.

They beat Llandudno 70-odd to 3. There’s some doubt as to the exact score. This article makes it 76-3, Ebbw’s website reckons it was 74. Anyway, it was a nice change for Ebbw to get some tries.

Their reward is a home game against Ynysybwl in the 5th round, to be played on 24 January.

Scorers: Tries for almost everyone - Andy McLaughlin (2), Shaun Powell (2), Aaron Bramwell (2), Kristian Owen, Andrew Bevan, James Thomas, Anthony Lott, Jonathan Griffiths and Richard Wilkes. Bramwell converted eight.

Team: Andrew McLaughlan, Kristian Owen (c), Aaron Bramwell, Shaun Powell, Andrew Bevan; Dai Langdon, Llyr Lane; Anthony Lott, Mathew Williams, Marc Jones; Matthew Griffin, Jonathan Griffiths; Rhys Jenkins, Simon Pengelly, James Thomas. Subs: Richard Wilkes, Aaron Coundley, Nick Eaves, Gavin Lucas, Ieuan Evans.

Ebbw’s next game is away at Pontypool on Saturday 27 December.

The photo comes from Whitcomb’s flickr site. Ta.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Rugby Notes

I was down with a particularly bad strain of manflu on the weekend, so I didn’t get to see Ebbw Vale’s 0-8 defeat at Bedwas.

Amongst the comments on the supporters’ forum was…

“On my entrance ticket it said ‘Admit one adult to view rugby’. I reckon I can sue under the trade descriptions act because I certainly didn't see any rugby yesterday. In fact, that has to go down as one of the worst games I have ever seen. Talk about two poor sides.”

It sounds like a good one to have missed.

There’s more, if you can bear it, on The Steel Daffodil’s blog, from where I nicked the photo.

Team: Andrew McLaughlan, Ieuan Coombes, Kristian Owen (c), Aaron Bramwell, James Lewis; Dai Langdon, Ieuan Evans; Aaron Coundley, Richard Wilkes, Marc Jones; Jonathan Griffirhs, Matthew Griffin; James Thomas, Rhys Jenkins, Rhys Williams. Subs: Mathew Williams, Anthony Lott, Nick Eaves, Gavin Lucas, Llyr Lane, Shaun Powell, Andrew Bevan.

Scorers: er, nope, not a single one.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Rugby Notes

Ebbw went down 11-14 at home to the Wizards of Aberavon on Saturday. Though frankly wizards they were not; we wuz robbed.

”C'mon the honest XV” was the call from the terrace, fat lot of good it did us. Aberavon conceded 20 penalties, most of them for offside and many of them cynical, and received just one yellow card. Ebbw on the other hand got one yellow (Andrew Bevan, well deserved) for just a handful of penalties.

What does this say about how to play the game? I guess you just go to spoil and disrupt & if the ref doesn't have the balls to stand up to you (and most don't) then you win. I guess that we have a young team which needs to be more streetwise (which translates as being good at playing the ref).

We didn't help ourselves by some silly mistakes and a few missed kicks, and we never led, but we didn't deserve the last minute kick in the teeth that came in the form of the winning drop goal.

Number 8 Rhys Williams was excellent and centre Shaun Powell made a huge impact when he came on.

Photo courtesy of Whitcomb.

Scorers: Try for Ieuan Coombes and two penalties for Aaron Bramwell.

My man of the match: Rhys Williams, excellent in picking up from a retreating scrum and all around the pitch.

Team: Andrew McLaughlan; Ieuan Coombes, Kristian Owen (c), Aaron Bramwell, Andrew Bevan; Andrew Williams, Llyr Lane; Anthony Lott, Mathew Williams, Marc Jones; Nick Eaves, Jonathan Griffiths; James Thomas, Rhys Jenkins, Rhys Williams. Bench: Richard Wilkes, Gareth Jones, Matthew Griffin, Gavin Lucas, Ieuan Evans, Peter Smith, Shaun Powell.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Food Notes

We ate out at Fwrrwm Ishta (no I don’t know how to pronounce that either) in Machen with Jon & B last night.

Very quiet there, probably the last lull before the Crimbo rush kicks off. The food was terrific as was the service, and of course the company.

For the record, the haddock and prawn risotto, Beef Wellington and pecan cheesecake all went down a treat.

Theatre Notes

Cath and I went to see Simon Yates - Beyond the Void at Abergavenny’s Borough Theatre last week.

Simon is best known as the man who cut the rope when his mountaineering partner Joe Simpson fell into a crevasse. (A story summarised here and made into the film Touching the Void.)

His story was about this and the rest of a remarkable career climbing up most of the world’s most difficult mountains. An enjoyable couple of hours, but it made me thankful that I didn’t shin up ice-covered mountains to get my kicks.

Ava's Diary

Here’s a flavour of what I’ve been up to in the last few weeks.

I am now sitting up on my own, and while I can’t actually crawl, I get around a bit on my hands and one knee and one foot. And then I roll over and have to start again.

My newest party tricks are clapping my hands and pointing (not at the same time).

I was ill a couple of weeks ago. I had a bout of thrush, a yeast infection in my mouth. Mam took me to casualty at the Royal Glamorgan Hospital, and then the next day to my GP, Dr Gail. Just to prove that I wasn’t faking anything, I threw up over Dr Gail. I recovered after mam gave me some strawberry flavoured stuff and lots of cuddles.

I’ve spent a couple of weekends down in Swansea with nanna and grandpa. The first time mam and dad were both sick with a stomach bug (nanna called it the Bonymaen cottage hospital). The second time mam and dad went down to Tresaith to winterise the caravan, and I stayed with grandpa to watch Wales on TV.

At the crèche, we are in the middle of rehearsals for the Christmas concert. I am playing the part of a star. Mam has made me a starry, sparkly outfit and she is determined that I will be the best star in the show. She reckons I look like Diana Ross. Two concerts were originally planned, but due to demand another show has been added for grandparents. I’ll report on how the concert goes next week.