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Updated by Stepan Wood on Sep 21, 2015
Stepan Wood Stepan Wood
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To-Do items for Dad

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Resolve whether Bill and Holly Sokil will live at the farm

As you all know, Bill and Holly Sokil are interested in living at the farm in a sort of "property manager" capacity. I'm adding this to the list because it's high priority and has a short time fuse. Bill has sent me a draft agreement to review. They'd prefer to pay no rent, but provide services in the form of property management, maintenance, repairs, and personal care for Dad whenever he's there. I've discussed with Evan the idea that they would pay all expenses but no rent. We think this could work as long as it's clear what they will provide in return. I thought Dad was on board but today (Sept 21) he told me he's not keen, apparently because he has the mistaken impression that Bill would have carte blanche to renovate and change the place however he sees fit. I tried to reassure Dad that this was never the proposal, that Bill would do nothing without prior approval. Anyway Dad asked me not to give them the impression that we are keen to move ahead, but I'm afraid we will lose this opportunity if we don't move fast. So I will continue to correspond with Bill about possible terms. I'll copy everyone.



CLOSED: Find out if the safety deposit box keys Dad found open anything

Dad found a pair of keys in a brown CIBC envelope with the number 173 on them. He says they are the keys to Mom's old safety deposit box at CIBC, which we closed more than a year ago. On the remote chance that they actually open a different safety deposit box, we should inquire with CIBC to determine if they are the keys to the box that we already closed. We should call Ana Laura Frey at |Tel. (705) 435 4327 ext. 300 | Fax. (705) 435 3061| |email:|

Due: no rush


DONE! Arrange payment of Seniors Homecare by Angels

At present the arrangement is that statements are mailed to the farm and emailed to Dad and Step. To avoid confusion, we should have the statements directed to Step only so he can manage payment. Step to arrange this.

Due Date: ASAP


Monitor Dad's GICs and pay out money owing to Lisa

Several of Dad's Tangerine GICs have matured this summer or will mature soon. We need to determine if any of these were earmarked for Lisa, and make sure to track them as such. By extension we need to arrange for the amounts earmarked for Lisa to be paid to her ASAP (approximately $17,400 previously matured GICs now sitting in Dad's CIBC accounts are for Lisa, plus several other recently matured or soon-to-mature Tangerine and Alterna GICs). For more than a year, Step has been urging Dad for to pay these out to Lisa, and urging Lisa to finalize her separation agreement with David. I can't continue to keep track of these things indefinitely. Let's get moving!

Due Date: ASAP.


DONE! Create and manage Dad's online CRA account

Step to set up online access to Dad's CRA account, so that Libby and Step can manage his income tax account.

Due date: ASAP.


Monitor Dad's driving

Lisa reports that Dad has left the emergency brake off his car and it has rolled more than once. Dad has reported to Step that he is having trouble finding the gears. Dad will have to undergo a driver's licence test before his next birthday, Feb 23, 2016. Everyone please monitor his driving carefully for signs of danger and share any resulting information so we can take action as needed.


DONE! Sort out Dad's car insurance payment

Dad recently received his car insurance renewal notice with an annual premium of $1233, due Sept 9, 2015. On August 6, he wrote a cheque to the insurance company for $308.23. When Step was at the farm on August 10, Dad was unable to explain the discrepancy. We need to contact the insurance company to find out if Dad entered into an instalment agreement or if the full amount is due Sept 9. Zenith Insurance, 1-800-797-4281, customer no. 4354832. Best to do this with Dad, otherwise we will have to use the Power of Attorney.

Due Date: end of August, 2015


Manage Dad's donations

Dad has been making multiple donations to the same charities and political parties in the same year. He does not wish to do so, but he can't keep track. Step and Dad spent 2 hours in July 2015 going over donation requests and payments for 2014 and 2015 with the aim of consolidating them and avoiding duplication. Nonetheless Dad continues to make duplicate payments. On August 10, 2015, Step made another effort to get a handle on Dad's donation situation. Simply keeping track of donations is a challenge since Dad makes them by cheque and by Visa and does not keep reliable records. Nonetheless Step will try to make sense of them and sit down with Dad to write some cheques in an orderly fashion. In the meantime, whenever anyone is at the farm, please scan the kitchen table for any envelopes soliciting donations or containing donation receipts and please collect them (surreptitiously, if necessary) and deliver them to Step for action.


DONE: Water purification and softener system: replace salt and filters

The water purification system's filters and UV light must be replaced by the end of August. The tank of salt also needs to be replenished. Call Aquamart at 705-721-4060 or 800-721-4060 to arrange

Due Date: end of August.


Deal with the Studio

The studeio's oil tank must be replaced before winter 2015-16. We need to decide whether to (a) replace the oil tank, (b) purchase a smaller heater, or (c) leave the studio unheated, which will ruin any liquid or gel paints. By extension, we need to decide whether to shut the studio down and get rid of it.

Due Date: decision needed ASAP. Action needed before heating season begins (October).


Dispose of Mom's rifle

Mom's firearms acquisition certificate (FAC) expires Sept 19, 2015. After that, it will be illegal to still have her rifle and ammo. Before then, we need to (a) find the rifle and ammo and (b) call the OPP at 1-888-310-1122 to arrange for an officer to come and pick them up. It is also legal for us to sell them to anyone with a valid FAC but who has time to arrange that?

DUE: By end of August, 2015


Closed: Remove malware from Dad's Acer laptop and get antivirus protection working

Closed: Remove malware from Dad's Acer laptop and get antivirus protection working

Around December 13 Dad started getting strange pop-up windows on the Acer laptop from programs like "SuperOptimizer" and "Link See" prompting him to install things and take various actions to "protect" or "clean" the computer. He doesn't know what to do with them. He has had almost daily phone sessions with Step since then trying to sort things out. During those calls we determined that his antivirus software has been disabled. Step needs to go to the farm and sort out the problem in person.

In Feb or March Jonathan sorted out the problem--he got antivirus running on the laptop in Dad's bedroom and he determined that the Acer laptop is too damaged to be salvaged. He recommended that nobody use the Acer laptop and that we change Dad's online passwords in case they have been compromised.

Status: closed.


DONE: Put winter tires on Dad's car

DONE: Put winter tires on Dad's car

Dad has been talking for 2 months about the need to put winter tires on the Mazda. He has not succeeded. Last week he got stuck in the lane after the first substantial snow fall. I fear that without help, he will not get it done.

Status: DONE


DONE: Sort out what to do with Dad's trust account for Jonathan

DONE: Sort out what to do with Dad's trust account for Jonathan

On Oct. 26 2014 Dad showed Step a recent statement for an investment account he set up many years ago for Jonathan on David B's advice. Way back then he invested $500. The account is now worth around $550, mainly because the main investment David B advised Dad to buy was Ballard Power Systems (the fuel cell company), which has lost a lot of value over the years (book value of Dad's shares is around $1600, but current market value is around $500). Basically this investment is worth what Dad initially put in many years ago, and he wants to liquidate it. He asked Step to seek David B's advice about what to do. Step to follow up.

Status: DONE


Stepan: Shut down Mom's Facebook account

Stepan: Shut down Mom's Facebook account

It is difficult to receive FB notifications from Mom's account. But it is also a good way to stay in touch with her friends about relevant events (the Memorial party on Aug 23 and a possible Penny Project show). We need to find a way to shut her account down in an orderly way. In email correspondence, Dad suggested that we use the account only to post the remaining photos from the Aug 23 party and to post information about the Penny Project show, which I think we agreed to aim for the one-year anniversary of her death. After the Penny Project show, we will shut down the account.Thoughts?


DONE: Dad: Investigate MBNA Mastercard letter

DONE: Dad: Investigate MBNA Mastercard letter

Dad received a letter from MBNA Bank dated mid-August, addressed to "John Wood," announcing changes to a Mastercard credit card that Dad has no record or memory of ever having. Dad to call number on letter to investigate and cancel the account if warranted. Step to help as needed.

Status: CLOSED Oct 26 pending further contact from MBNA.


Everyone: Share party photos

Everyone: Share party photos

Step to create a Dropbox folder where we can all upload photos from Mom's memorial party. Anyone who has digital photos or videos please upload them to the Dropbox.

Anyone to show Dad how to access the Dropbox folder and download the photos to his own computer.

Also: Step to continue posting party photos to Mom's facebook page as time permits.


DONE! Step and Dad: Fix UV water disinfection system and water softener.

DONE! Step and Dad: Fix UV water disinfection system and water softener.

Dad and Step replaced the UV light and water filters but the UV light is not working. Also we all want to decrease the degree of water softening to eliminate that slimy feeling.

The vendor, Aquamart, is scheduled to come to the farm Friday Sept 5 to (a) install a bypass valve on the water softener (cost: $75 plus tax all in) and (b) fix the electronic control panel for the UV light (most likely install a new ballast, cost $380 plus tax and labour, minus a small warranty rebate because the UV light was guaranteed for 5 years but only lasted 4 years--but we have to pay for the new ballast in full and the rebate will be processed later).

In the meantime there is no disinfection of the water but Dad says the water doesn't need disinfection. If this is incorrect, he needs to secure alternative drinking water ASAP!

Status: DONE!


Done: Sort out dental coverage and claims

Done: Sort out dental coverage and claims

Some dental claims submitted by Dad's dentist this summer were rejected by Sunlife, and Dad had to pay some dental invoices himself. This may be because of a clerical mixup due to switching out of Mom's public service dental plan to Dad's York plan. In March, Step compared the two plans and found Dad's to be better than Mom's, therefore did not opt to continue Mom's plan. Dad can't get into his MySunLife online account to check the status of recent claims because he can't find his password.

Dad to contact SunLife to restore MySunLife access; also review Step’s health plan comparison table to see why we chose not to continue Mom's dental plan. Step to help Dad as needed.

Then Step to help Dad review status of recent claims, update dentist’s and SunLife’s records of Dad’s coverage, resubmit rejected claims, possibly seek late opt-in to Mom's plan if warranted.

In Feb or March 2015 Step determined that the dental coverage is active and that there are no outstanding claims to be submitted. Success!

Status: DONE!


DONE: Put in an automatic shut-off device on the stove

DONE: Put in an automatic shut-off device on the stove

Step researched shut-off devices and narrowed the choices down to the Cookstop, Homesenser and Stove Guard, of which the Cookstop seems to be the best. Step to inquire about pricing and options and report back to Dad, then buy and install the chosen model.

Status: Cookstop device installed early summer 2015.


Withdrawn: dispose of the winter tires

Withdrawn: dispose of the winter tires

Step to check if Civic tires fit Henry. Also need to check if Mazda dealer will take the Escape winter tires.


DONE (Item Closed but card not found)!: Help Dad find his PetroPoints card

DONE (Item Closed but card not found)!: Help Dad find his PetroPoints card

He misplaced it when trading in the Civic.

Due date: soon.


DONE! Bella to groomers? Is this a thing we should be getting done?

DONE! Bella to groomers? Is this a thing we should be getting done?

We should help Dad select a grooming service, once that is done he can arrange grooming as needed.

Status: DONE


Anyone and Lisa: Go through Mom's clothing

Anyone and Lisa: Go through Mom's clothing

Due date: none.


DONE! Help Dad purchase a cemetery plot

DONE! Help Dad purchase a cemetery plot

Step and Dad visited Prospect and Mt Pleasant cemeteries in June. Need to confirm that he wants to purchase a plot in Prospect, then follow up to arrange the purchase.

Status: DONE!