News, updates, and happenings with the Kragnes family: Phil, our Seeing Eye Dogs, and (me) Rebecca.

Kragnes Kard or Kragnes Karol

To the Tune of Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas

Last year we spent a hospital Christmas.

Ambulance and All.

This year two more ambulances came to call.

Had six total hospitalizations.

Blake and Lancer stayed,

With Rebecca at home where they pooped and played.

There we were with Phil’s Sepsis and Phil’s leg pain and more.

Can’t remember what all of those,

Visits in the rows,

Were For.

Throughout this we all remained together,

Though the stress was high.

Phil’s nerve pain in back and hip and leg and thigh

But Phil’s health marked this year as it went racing by.

Through the year between hospital visits,

There was normal life,

For the dogs and Phil and don’t forget his wife.

Presentations meetings coding working,

Software to install,

At work Blake was happy when they threw his ball.

While at home the weekdays were fulfilling,

Various Household tasks

,Lancer knew for scratches he just had to ask.

But on weekends piano playing at church and the restaurant.

It was Lancer people thought of,

Getting all the love,

he’d want.

As we gather at this Christmas season,

It’s a peaceful scene.

Fireplace and the beds the dogs will go between.

So Merry Christmas, happy two thousand nineteen.


Comments on: "Kragnes Kard or Kragnes Karol" (3)

  1. Merry Christmas to you and all your family!

  2. Hello Rebecca,

    Thanks for this Christmas card! Our list has been a somewhat quiet one this year, but much has been going on. Brian had brain surgery in June and fortunately, it was a benign tumor and he was back to work by the beginning of August. We have been busy with kids and going to doctors. I am beginning to understand what people are saying that as they get older, their social life is visiting their doctors. I have been healthy, but I keep getting put onto more medications. I guess that just goes with the territory. Anyway, for the most part, life is going along smoothly here at home.

    May all of you have a blessed holiday season with a merry Christmas and a happy new year.

    Kathy and Ginger

  3. Very cute as usual. Here’s mine. Even though social media has declared the Christmas letter dead, here is mine! Spoiler alert: This Christmas letter is not nearly as exciting as the one in Anthony’s debut novel Evergreen Tidings, which I think you might enjoy. But here’s what I’ve been up to, along with my best wishes for you and yours.

    I was a founding member of the planning team for the IM Church, an ecumenical, monthly church service for people with cognitive and other disabilities that make regular church attendance problematic. I worked to make sure the activities and church service are available to all; e.g. crafts that blind people can do, a sign language interpreter, and transportation provided if needed. My next goals for this ministry are to see the people with disabilities serving as active members of the IM church as greeters, musicians, in the kitchen, etc.

    When the World Series for Beep Baseball brought 500 blind athletes to Eau Claire for a week of games, I worked with Visit Eau Claire to make Eau Claire more blind-friendly. I did a training for hotel and concession stand workers and produced a one-page handout that summarized etiquette tips for working with blind customers. As one customer said “Eau Claire is a great place; they counted my change back to me in my hand and told me what each bill was.”

    I contributed to and helped find other contributors so that the public library could purchase a Braille printer. When it arrived, I helped set it up and test it. Now menus, church bulletins, medication instructions, etc. can be printed so that blind people can read them themselves.

    Looking forward to my seventieth birthday, I arranged for a book of poetry to be put into Braille and made available nationally through the National Braille Press. There are only a handful of such books available for blind people to buy and I decided there should be one more. The one I picked reflects my world view: 100 Poems to Lift Your Spirits.

    I continue chairing the Aging and Disability Resource Center board, serving on the Wisconsin Public Radio Association board, my parish council and guest lecturing at the university and in the community. Each new blog entry on my blog at is likely to show another example of my advocacy for full inclusion of people with disabilities in the good life. One of my favorites is “Sighted People Are Strange” about emoji’s.

    In addition to blogging, my writing this year included being part of a reading by local writers on the theme of work and play, entering a Burma shave sign contest in Wisconsin and writing some haiku for another contest. Not great literature, but I hope you enjoy them.

    Right after New Year’s, Luna and I will venture to Chicago to celebrate holidays with family. May yours be full of love, joy and peace. Kathie

    Burma-shave contest entries Living here is fine / most of the year/ as long as you’ve got / plenty / of beer. For Wisconsin / Let’s all cheer / Eat some / cheese / and drink beer. The land is beautiful / The people are gentle / Wisconsin is great / If winter doesn’t / drive you mental Haiku: Four Senses for Four Seasons Spring Birds sing, staking claim To territory for nests- Joyful beginnings. Summer The smell of mown grass Fresh sign of nature’s bounty Or just a job done. Fall Apple pie tastes Like fall-sweet but just hinting Of snowbound delights. Winter First snow swept away. Followed by much more hard work, Ending with damn ice!

    Katherine Schneider, Ph.D. Senior Psychologist, Emerita Counseling Service University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Author of Occupying Aging: Delights, Disabilities and Daily Life, To the Left of Inspiration: Adventures in Living with Disabilities and a children’s book Your Treasure Hunt: Disabilities and Finding Your Gold Blog:

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