Thursday, December 31, 2009

Training Foundations

OK, I am being proactive for next year.  I have gotten Miss Grace on a waiting list for agility foundations. Grace and I have taken some beginning classes, but I think I need to really strengthen our foundations, so I asked to be on the waiting list for the next foundation class at Agile Canines.  I have loved training Magic with Michelle, and really hope to be able to get him back into her classes, but honestly, Ham Lake is a long ways from South Minneapolis, and the new Agile Canines location is only 35-40 blocks away.

Magic is already enrolled in the Acting Class starting in February. I have tried to get him into this class for a long time.  Nothing may ever come of it, other than we have fun, but hey, he would be awfully cute in some advertising, so who knows.  I am still really thinking about attempting flyball. I have the class paperwork sitting on my desk, I just don't know if I want to start another sport with him? I should just let that go, but I haven't yet. I should get us back to agility classes, but I am just so bad about wanting to go out in the cold to do stuff in the winter, its hard for me to commit to that. Ok, so I am procrastinating and that is not a good way to start the year either. The other option is to try another actual obedience class and see if we can fix the heeling issue? 

I am looking to find a beginning obedience class for Siren. Not sure yet where I want to take her. I need to look at the options I guess. Anyone have a beginning obedience trainier that they really really liked and can recommend? 

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2009 recap and goals for 2010

My goals for this year were pretty modest, and overall we were successful. These are the goals I posted last December:
 Grace earn her RA, and her UKC Ch.  Both done, additionally Grace earned her URO1 too.
 Magic maybe pick up a couple of agility titles. Done, AKC-NA, NJP and NADAC jumpers too. We also    managed to earn these UKC non agility titles,  URO1, FO, UWP
 Peace enjoy her times in the show ring, and pick up a few wins along the way.  Done obtaining her AKC and  UKC Ch all from bred by.  And I cannot forget Peace's Best in Show which was incredible for me.
 Siren train in obedience and tracking. Well we did some training, but not as much as I would have liked


I was more successful with the dog goals that I posted than I was with the personal goals that I did not post.
I did learn to knit, I am very slow, but I have completed several small things.  I also crocheted which was not on ny goal list last year, but I have enjoyed that tremndously. I have NOT finished the socks I started, I got to the heel and stopped.  Need to get that figured out. 
 
For 2010 I am again going to have modest goals.  With 4 dogs and a limited dog budget, I cannot train or trial as I would like.
 
Magic-Magic will hopefully do some more weight pulling. I would like to have him work toward his ARCH and see if maybe we can earn his CDX. Not sure on that though, as he really does not enjoy obedience as much as agility. But again with the limited budget, I can work on the obedience and rally more on my own than I can agility.
Grace-I love Grace, but she is much more of a challenge to work with. I would like to get her back to agility classes, as she hasn't been training since before the pups and that was almost 2 years ago.  She did go to an agility trial this year, even though she doesn't weave yet, and she had a great time, so I hope to get her back out training and maybe trialing.
Peace-As Peace was my focus last year, she gets to take the year off. We will work at home on training.
Siren-Siren will begin formal training. As in a training class.  I am not disciplined enough to work my dogs as they should be, on my own, so I am going to commit to getting at least one title on Siren this year.
 
So Siren and Grace will be the lucky winners of the training lottery this year.  They will get the most classes and opportunities, I think.  Magic will still probably be my most often trialed dog though.  We have 2 APDT opportunities each year and I am going to commit myself to both.
 
On a personal level, I need to work toward getting healthy. That means exercise. No excuses, it has to become a larger part of my life. With my other medical issues, simply becoming more physical will help me feel better. Maybe not at the time I am sweating, but the rest of the time!
 
I also need to learn how to do those heels on the socks. Those will be done in 2010!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Back on line!

Some naughty dog in my house should have gotten coal in its stocking, but no one did. Seems someone decided to eat the phone line cord so I had no internet during the long weekend.  Yes, I probably could have gone out and bought a new one, but the roads were not great, and if we move the cars during the parking ban we may not find a new spot, I decided to wait until today.

We had a nice holiday and hope you all did too. Both of the afghans I made were really liked, as were the homemade jelly collections, and knit dishcloths.  Must be the economy but our whole family went with really practical gifts this year, which I really appreciate.  The dogs got their bucket of venison scraps and bones from the deer my brother shot (muzzle loading season) and processed himself.  Talk about happy dogs. Venison is a huge favorite here. For some reason though, I cannot convince him to let me have the stomach and organs-it seems he can handle the idea of me feeding the dogs raw scraps, but not offal. Oh well, free food for the dogs is always good, so I am not complaining. 

Hope everyone else had the holiday they desired, whether busy, or peaceful, Christian or not! Peace to all!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas

Magic and I want to wish a Merry Christmas to all our readers. 

Monday, December 21, 2009

Carpal Tunnel from crocheting

I do it every time, I swear.  Remember the afghan I crocheted?  Well, that went really well and I loved making it. Loved it so much I decided to do another one for another christmas gift. But, this one I decided to make more like a typical granny afghan, with multiple colors per hexagon.  Now, the other one I did in a month.  A month!  I started this one the first of November, and its December 21st and it is still not done!!  Yes, I am on the homestretch, but dang, this one is taking forever.  Of course it doesn't help that I chose to do this one in black, and well, I can't see the yarn with my glasses on, but can't see the football game on TV without my glasses, so spent the whole game last night flipping glasses on and off. (And they lost, they really should not have lost, very dissappointing)  This morning my arm is just aching, and I have to go home tonight and finish this darn thig, and then spend a few hours picking all the dog hair off the darn thing.  Ah well, holiday stress...

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Tricks

A quiet weekend just spent trying to get all the holiday stuff done.  Magic and I did start working on a new trick. I am asking him to push a box across the floor with his nose.  It only took 2 sessions for him to understand the concept, now we are working on distance. Next I am thinking about teaching him to put things into a box, but I am still thinking about that one. I have been working really hard trying to get him to hold and carry the dumbell, or a toy without dropping it and am not sure if teaching this right now is a good idea.

Otherwise, the dogs have enjoyed the relatively decent winter weather with lots of playtime outside.  Gotta love that. Except for when Grace went between Kazin and the fence and got peed on. Oh well.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Updated Reading List

You know, I used to read books.  Now I read blogs, while I listen to books. Best of both worlds!
I am in the process of updating the blog links.  The list is already huge and there are quite a few more that I religiously read that I will be adding.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Perfection, hah, I think NOT

Over on Susan Garrett's blog she has a thought provoking post on seeking perfection. I can honestly say, and you can easily tell when watching my dogs, perfection has not been our goal.  Versatility, cooperation, teamwork and fun have been my goals.  I do not fault those who have goals for those high level titles at all.  Someday I may have those goals. But early on I had several experiences that made me realize that, for me, its about me having fun AND my dog having fun.  Mostly its about my dog having fun.

Early on in my training with Magic I was at a class early so I was watching the prior class. There was a lady there with her dog doing some scentwork. She dropped the article in the pile, went back and sent her dog. The dog trotted out to the pile, picked the right article, and started back. On the way back, she dropped the article and sneezed several quick sneezes. (not sure whether her sneeze caused her to drop it, or she dropped it to sneeze) Before the poor little dog had stopped sneezing, the trainer was pinching that poor dogs ear and forcing her to pick up the dumbbell. The next send to the pile she went out picked the dumbell and slowly came back, but not straight, not perfect-she got another ear pinch.  The rest of the time she worked that cute little dog, her head and tail were down and she worked. She worked well, but she clearly was not enjoying herself.  This team often earns high in trial, but at what expense?

I want my dogs to enjoy the ride as much as I do.  I really don't want to force them to do the things they hate. Yes, originally I wanted to work toward Magic's CDX, but he hates heeling, and although I will work this year towards trying to help him enjoy it, I won't force the issue.  He seems to love the weight pulling.  He charges to the front of the cart to get hooked up.  I think if he could talk he would tell me that agility is great! I am pretty sure that if I could throw a toy for 6 hours a day he would race after it for 6 hours a day. Are we awesome in any of those, nope, but we are having fun. Even when we leave the agility course and I am calling him a goober and asking him to tell me when did "tunnel" start to mean take the frame, its being said in the a goofy loving voice and his tail is wagging and we are both happy.  I am not a great trainer,  I am not consistent enough, nor steady enough to be one, and I KNOW our mistakes are my fault. Yes I am proud of the titles we have earned, but I am also proud of my dog even when he does lay down during the heeling pattern and wait for me to get back.

Please if you ever see me lose it at a trial or in training where I take it out on the dog, STOP me, set me down and remind me, that is not the person I am nor the person I want to be.  Please.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Cardi Claus Visited today!


Thank yo so much to Kota, Sedona, Chance and Piper, and of course to Traci too.  Let me just tell you, the doggie cookies are a HUGE hit.  They all mobbed me while I was opening the package noses twitching all the while.  Thank you so much for the candy and the cactus ornament too.  It will go high on the tree to protect it from naughty dogs.
This has been fun and I hope we continue this in the years to come.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Training in Minneapolis

I have to admit, I am so very lucky to live in a city with so much dog opportunity.  We have many training facililities available, with 3 that are within a couple of miles from me, and several more within about a half hours travel. We also have waiting lists at many of these facilities.  I was on a wait list for agility at one place for over 2 years.  I finally got into another or may still be waiting.  A couple of the schools offer some tracking, or therapy dog training. Oh yes, we also have flyball at several. One had dockdiving, but Magic sinks, so I really haven't paid attention to that anywhere else so it may be available. But for most basic classes, you can get into them without too much delay. However, for some of the more limited classes, wait lists can be lengthy.

Its also nice that we have a variety of venues available, along with AKC.  We have UKC for conformation, obedience, rally and weight pulling.  We have NADAC, ASCA, USDAA, CPE, TDAA for agility. We have 2 trials per year of APDT rally and now also St Huberts Obedience.  I am sure there is more I don't know about. Quite a variety of options.

I was thinking about my goals for next year.  Being fairly new to dog training and competition, I really want to do it all.  Poor Magic, he is my gotta do it all guy. I really want to try teacup agility, but Grace may be more suited to that.  I am thinking though, as much as Magic loves balls, I think we need to try flyball.  I dont know if I can handle the barking, but it does look fun.   I guess the first step for next year is to sit down and figure out a training and trialling budget. Then I can decide priorities for each dog.  Meanwhile. I still need to train more basics to the girls who practically mobbed me last night thinking that maybe I have food I am not sharing!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Little things excite me

I am really tickled today.  There is a class that is offered at one of the local dog training facilities.  I have wanted to get Magic into this class for quite some time, but I always seem to miss the signup. Its at a traiing facility that is not very close to me, so I have to watch the website for it,  Well last week I found that I missed it again.  Its already full. So I called tham and asked if possibly it was possible to pre-sign up for the next class whenever it may be.  The instructor said she didn't know when the next one would be, probably not until much later in the year.  Well I got a call from her today, and she has enough people interested already, she is having a second session starting at the end of February.  I can't wait!

Ok, so maybe this is not something that most people get excited about, but I am. 

Busy Week!

Last week and weekend was one of those times where it seemed like I was just going and doing non stop.  I am sure that this time of year pretty much everyone is in that position.  I have been working on holiday gifts, another afghan and some dishcloths. I did all my holiday baking on Saturday.  I am sure a few more things will get thrown in, but if I dont bake anything else, we will still get fatter. Save me from myself, someone.

The dogs are doing great. They love the snow. We have been having more dog races in the yard than we had all summer I think. Peace and Siren learned some very nice jumping form.  Last fall I put up a fence so I can close off part of the yard come spring to try to save the grass a bit.  Its just that black plastic fence stuff, about 3 feet high. Well, my naughty boy Magic learned early on that it has enough give, that if he goes over it and hits it a bit it he will be fine-yes my 12.25 inch corgi can jump 3 feet.  Well last week part of the top of the fence fell down, creating a nice low gate to leap over, about 14 inches tall, but as its plastic fallen over it also has about a 12 inch spread too.  Grace had no problem with this jump, but Siren and Peace, well it was a bit of a challenge for them.  They had a few tries where they hit the fence or just  misjudged it  But now, well, I was watching them yesterday and both og them have developed a beautiful arching jump. Even when racing around and over, both girls go over with lovely form.  Now, I just hope that will carry over to agility when we start training.
Have a great week, everyone.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Its Official - Picture added

Ch. Daybreake's Peaceful Dreams! 


I just checked the AKC site and it's there.  Woohoo!  And her show picture came too, I can't wait to get it scanned in. (added) Peace is only my second show dog and the first one I bred, so it is exciting for me.  She may not be the best cardigan out there, but she is one of my favorites. (She is such a goober-girl it would be hard not to love her.)

After the holidays are over and my mad christmas gift finishing rush is over I need to do her scrapbook.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Looks like Winter is on the way

It's been a warmer, dryer winter so far, but it looks like that may be coming to an end. The high today for Minneapolis is 25, with snow predicted in a day or so. The dogs like the snow and don't seem to mind the cold, but I don't like the cold at all. With my anemia I am almost always cold, even in summer often, so I am not looking forward to the arrival of winter. On the other hand though, I love a snowy Christmas.

I think I finally have convinced Peace that the tunnel is not so scary. We have been working on it this weekend. She is such a silly girl, sleeps underneath the blankets,but scared of the open ended tunnel. Oh well, we made some progress and she is starting to go through. I amy try feeding her dinner in the tunnel to see if she becomes more comfy.

Magic is working on the head down down. Siren, well we are working on understanding heel position. Sometimes she seems to get it, but not always, so we will keep working. No rush, not planning on anything too soon. Hope everyone had a good weekend.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Ambition-None

Well, I seem to be going through one of those really non ambitious periods of time.  I really don't feel like doing anything!  I know I should train the dogs, I should clean the house, I should go christmas shopping.....Nothing seems to get me going.  So, I need a challenge? Any thoughts anyone?

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Cardi Exchange Gift is off

in the mail today.  This is so much fun! 

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Working hard, or lazing around, depends on perspective

I am spending these 3 days working on holiday gifts.  Now, I call it working hard, David on the other hand calls it having fun or lazing around.  See in his opinion its not work.  Work should be doing the dishes, (which I asked him to do so I could play), or vacuuming, which with 4 corgis and a husky mix is vital right now.   I figure that its OK to work hard on something you enjoy doing right?  I mean, is the gift any less done if I do it while watching TV?  Or does that really mean I am spending the weekend enjoying myself?  Oh gosh, how horrible is that? Well no matter anyone elses desires, this weekend they can take care of themselves. I am busy!  Well, except for Magic who will bug me nonstop unless I toss that toy for him.

I hope everyone has a great weekend, do something you enjoy today.   Good luck those of you out showing, I will be watching for show results.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

I hope everyone has had a wonderful day. Today I did try to take time to think about what I am thankful for, and there is really quite a bit.  The short list, my family, having jobs even if they are not the ones we all want, my friends who truly are wonderful. And of course the corgis who have made these last few years a terrificly fun time. I hope everyone had a peaceful, joyful day today.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Vote for Suzanne

SAM-e Is having a contest for a daily good mood blogger.  If you have never read the Chickens in the Road blog, please go give it a read.  Suzanne is a fun writer with a great sense of humor and timing and brightens my day daily. Not to mention the wonderful photos, and really great chickens. (Love Syd Vicious) If you like what you read, and I don't see how you wouldn't, please cast a vote or several for Suzanne.

vote for Suzanne HERE
Thank you to all of you for the congrats and the good wishes over the weekend. I am so happy that Peace is finished, She has represented several first for me, my first litter, my first bred by champion and my first Best in Show. I adore the little Noodle head.






Thankfully my tooth was removed yesterday! I feel so much better, no pain pills today. I do have to say that there is something about the smell of dental work and blood that had the corgi's totally fascinated with my mouth yesterday. I can't tell you how many times I had to push a nose away. But my girls kept me warm and safe on the couch when I got home, I just wish they would have given me a little room, or maybe a corner of the blanket, the couch hogs. Magic on the other hand, was just sure that the day called for a rousing game of tug. Either way, snuggles or play, its a good day with the cardi's! OK, the pain meds were helpful too.....

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Peace and the football game

Today we got home from the dog show in plenty of time to watch the football game.  Apparently Peace was tired from her 2 days at the show, she hopped up on my lap, streched out down my legs and took a 2 hour nap.  And if I so much as commented on the game she would lift up her head and give me the stink eye.  What a DIVA she has become. 

Today at the show there were only 3 entered, so to try to keep the one possible point, I left her in the classes.  I tried to show her badly, I let her sniff and romp on the lead, but she still took winners. Thankfully, the judge gave the one lone boy BOB so he got the cross over point.  I would have felt really bad if Diana and Mac hadn't gotten at least one point for the day.  And we got to come home early which I was rather glad for since my sinuses are rather unhappy. I can't wait for my appointment tomoorow. Hopefully once the tooth is gone the penicillan can work on the infection.  If I don't post tomorrow, I am probably asleep.

Happy Belated Birthday to Magic!!

And Sadie, Edward and the rest of the litter.  It must be the tooth because I completely forgot that yesterday was Magics 5th birthday!   Which is really bad, because if I hadnt fallen so totally in love with Magic I probably wouldn't have the rest of the cardi's.  Magic has always been my best boy and we love him dearly.  He has always done anything I have asked of him from weight pulling to dock diving. Just a great dog. 

Just a reminder - this is my novice dog for everything, so even thought we don't yet have higher level titles, they are certainly possibilities. We have accomplished a lot I think, and now that Peace is done in the show ring, all the cardis will be focused on performance.

AKC- CD,  RE (RN,RA), NA, NJP  also his CGC certificate
UKC - UCD, UWP, URO1, FO
NADAC - NAC, NJC, TGN, O-TNN (TNN)
CPE- CL1-F
And he passed his therapy dog test too.

Just so no one thinks he will be deprived for his birthday, today he got a huge new antler piece to chew on and of course his favorite mcdonalds plain CHEESEBURGER!  Just a day late, but he is not holding it against me.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

We did it.

Pending AKC approval of course, Peace is now an AKC Champion too.  It was a small cardigan entry today, but she was WB, BOW, BOB.  (Nothing in group, but thats OK) My tooth is worse and the infection has now spread to my sinuses. Yuck. Can't wait for Monday to get this tooth ripped out, because last night I thought about a hammer and chisel...

Friday, November 20, 2009

I AM NOT fond of Dentists.

I am sure that dentists as a whole are great people, but I just hate having to go visit them.  I had an appointment bright and early today, 7am. Unfortunately  my visit today was not successful at all.  The tooth is as I expected, unsaveable. So we set out to remove it. Well guess what, its unsavable because it is so fragile it shattered in the process of pulling it.  And no, he couldn't get it all. so I have the bottom half of a tooth in my jaw still. Until Monday, when i have to go to the surgeon and take a little nap.   I have percocet and antibiotics to get me throught the weekend, but somehow I cant see me showing on percocet- but we might have to try it!  It may be an interesting weekend!

Peace and I are ready for the show, well as ready as I get. .  David and I went and set up a space for Diana, Mac and I.  Then we attended a seminar on the breeding bitch put on by a Royal Canin representative.  I thought it was really interesting. They gave out some books on reproduction and breeding, they had a nice little buffet and beer and soda. And it was free.  They will be doing another on reproduction at the Granite City show, I may go up just for that. 

Oh yeah, the show this weekend is being held at the local racetrack.  We arrived a little early for the seminar, so while we were waiting David and I went up to the OTB floor and were wondering around.  We had some dinner, a hiuge fish and chips basket that we shared and still couldnt finish, and watched the simulcast racing. All of a sudden I looked at this one horse, and said, I need to bet on him.  So I bet on him, and David bet on a different horse.  They finished 1 and 2, one of us won $11.60!  Is it a prelude to a good weekend, or a harbinger of doom.....

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A Serenade

I hadn't slept well last night, I have a tooth that needs some work and is giving me some grief, so this evening I decided to lay on the couch and take a short nap before we left for conformation class.  It was about 6 and I was the only one home, the dogs were quiet and I drifted off.  I woke about 25 minutes later to a lovely serenenade.  Blu, my little parrotlet was singing his little heart out. Da issy bissy spurder, upa water spout. Over and over, with a few requests mixed in - Can you sing, can you sing a spurder song... In the tiny little parrotlet voice.  Its been a while since Blu has sung for me. What a doll.

 Go here and click on the green box to hear Blu sing

Dancing and Dog Shows

I have become totally enamored of So You Think You Can Dance.  It locks me in every Tuesday night for 2 hours. Then Wednesday for an hour because I need to see who goes home.  Unfortunately tonight I am going to have to miss it. Since we have a show this weekend I kind of feel like I need to take Peace out and see if she remembers how to behave.

Peaceful has a bit more hair than she did a couple of weeks ago, but hardly no britches at all.  Its just her and her half sister, so once again, I am expecting we will be helping Diana's girl with some points, but we will go and have fun anyways. But when the weekend rolls around if you can think a good thought or 2 for her I would appreciate it, we just need that last single.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Holiday Exchange is coming!

I was so excited to see who's name I got in the holiday gift exchange.  I have so many fun thoughts, I hope I can make this as fun as I would like!   Planning.....

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Weekend Update

It was a lovely weekend in Minnesota. A lovely, boring, quiet weekend.  Days playing with my dogs, crocheting the next afghan and lazing around watching the birds at the bird feeder.   Today football and more crocheting.  Can't be beat, really, but not too much to blog about.  Sorry for that! 

(old picture of Grace Talking-which se does alot!)
Did get Grace's RA certificate from AKC yesterday. Yeah Gracie. She asked me today if perhaps she could go to the next dog show.  Well I think that is what she asked.  She came trotting into the kitchen carrying a show lead and collar-hers.  I thought it was in the collar box, but I found the box open in the closet.  Not really sure how she pulled that off, but the only collar and lead she took was her kangaroo leather one and she brought it right to me. She always tends to surprise me.  

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Cardi Blogger Exchage is nearly closing time.

So all of you interested in participating head on over to Simple Things and sign up.  I have been planning my exchange items....

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Summer, gone for now.


A view from Summer.  I love the bee shot. It took about 50 shots before I got the one I liked, but he was pretty patient with me. Or maybe he was just busy doing his thing, I don't know..

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Magic and Grace - URO1

Well today Grace earned her 3rd leg for her URO1, so both kids earned that title this weekend. Grace's score wasn't quite as nice as yesterdays 91, but I will take the 82.  She had a few moments where she decided to stack herself up really pretty instead of sitting for her front. And when I asked her for a re-do the one time, she had to bark at me as if to say, Mom I already did this one. Magic earned his first leg toward his URO2, with a nice run and a 95 score.  I know, no where near the best, but really good for a dog who lately has been not too excited about heeling, heck, he didn't lay down and wait for me so it was good.

I really have to say that I enjoy going to the events put on by the Mn Mixed Breed Club.  They always do such a nice job and all of their trials seem to be such happy places.  I may have to think about becoming a member and providing some support that way, even though my goofy old mixed breed boy will not be participating!

Afghan Picture

Ok the picture is sideways, but you get the idea.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Rally today and a visit with Joyce, Vegas and Music



Joyce came up to Burnsville today with Music and Vegas.  First let me just say what a cutie pie Vegas is.  He was so happy to be at a new place, and so interested in everything going on. Unfortunately, that made pictures a bit tough, and these are not great, but we had fun anyways.  I always thought he was a lovely boy and I still do!


Here is Music too, can't pay all the attention to the puppy.  I just adore this boy. He is such a sweetie.

Today at the UKC rally trial, both Magic and Grace qualified.  Magic with a 95 and Grace with a 91. That gave Magic his URO-1 title. 

Friday, November 6, 2009

the weekend approaches

And I am SO glad.  It will be a busy one, with the rally trial both days.  Tonight I think Grace and Magic will both get a bath.  It has been a while and although they don't look bad, I would just like them to look better!  It sounds like Joyce may come visit with Music and Vegas which I cannot wait for.  I just adore Music and cannot wait to see him again.  And I am guessing Vegas is getting big.    And we get to play in the rally ring.  I am hoping that since this one is inside, both Grace and Magic will be a bit more attentive.

PS: We do plan on trying to get some nice pictures of both dogs.   Joyce and I will try to get them sent out  and posted.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Whats next?

Maybe CPE.  Magic and I did one day of a CPE agility trial a couple of years ago, so he has a few Qs in level one.  He earned his level 1 F title, but with just running the one day, he needs more Q's in other courses to complete that level.  There is a CPE trial coming up, but its the same weekend as the last conformation show for the year in Minnesota.

And then there is APDT rally coming again. Both Magic and Grace earned level 1 titles, so could go on to level 2. Magic earned an award of excellence with his, but since his off leash heeling is so sucky, I cannot expect that in level 2. 

Apparently I suck at teaching heeling because none of the dogs like to heel much.  Oh well, so an OTCH is not in our future, I guess I can live with that.  Of course I suck at agility too, so no chance of a MACH, NATCH etc there either.  Hmm, what do we do well?   Not much really, but usually good enough to get by, and I guess it could be worse.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Computer Issues, finished afghan

Well the system must have picked up the bug that is going around my family.  Various programs just quit working, including the photo program, so I cant seem to load any pictures.  But, I finished my first crocheted project, the afghan.  Hopefully I can post a picture later. 

Magic Grace and I all practiced a little obedience yesterday.  Peace and Siren practiced non obedience.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Birthday Grace and Happy Halloween


Birthday wishes from Grace to all the family, Scout (good luck at the show today) River, Moira, and Fanny. We hope you all have a lovely day and lots of birthday treats.

Friday, October 30, 2009

I am greedy!

I am.  I admit it, it must be some sort of disease.  What did I do?  Well, I entered Grace in another Rally trial.  This summer, Magic and I tried UKC rally at the first UKC rally trial held up here in Minnesota, you know, that weekend of the weight pull.  We had fun. My greediness got to me that weekend too, so I entered Grace that Sunday as well. So now Magic has 2 legs, Grace has one toward their UKC Rally level 1.
The sickness, well, those unfinished titles just bug me. They don't bug me unless there is an opportunity to finish them, but hey, guess what, there is another UKC trial in a week!  So, I entered both of them, Magic for Saturday and Grace for both days.  Glutton for punishment I am. But really both dogs should be able to do this.

Speaking of unfinished, Peace still needs 1 point. I know its not a horrible thing, but again, that finishing thing is making me crazy.  She is still really nekkid.  The next show is in mid November, but entries close next week.  What to do, enter her and hope some hair comes back?  I don't know if anyone else with girls is planning on going.  Its a nice show site, but the entry fees are pretty high with no breaks for bred by as some have.  I hate to waste the money, but then I also know, she can't win that last point if she isnt there, right? But then there isn't another show until December and its a bit further away. Do-able, if need be.  I know I shouldnt stress about it, but I always worry about something happening and it not getting done!  Crazy and sick, I know I am.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Sick hubby, really happy dog

I wish I could have gotten a picture of the very satisfied look on Kazin's face this morning.  As usual right away when I got up to get ready for work I let the dogs out.  They know the routine, they all came in and went right to their room to settle in for the day.  As I was shutting the door, I casually asked Kazin to come out, which he did, although he was looking rather concerned or maybe confused.  What???  What did I do, he seemed to ask.  I walked him over to the bedroom door, opened it up and told him to hop up. He looked at me, I swear he grinned, and floof-right up behind Darryl grinning all the way.  Ah happiness - another day in bed!  An old dogs delight!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Lost Bird

(not Jade, but you can see the size)
The normal evening routine in my house is that once the dogs get kennelled for dinner, the birds get some out time.  Because the parrotlets are so small, we try not to have them out when the dogs are around too much.  Magic loves his birds, but even he might snap at something wizzing past his head.  Last night, I had Jade out riding my shoulder while I cleaned up her cage, freshened water, the normal stuff.  Well for some reason last night the little bugger took off on me and darted into the dogs room.  I raced after her, not sure where she would land, mind you I was only 4 feet from the door when she left. By the time I got to the room, she was gone. I could not find her. She was not on the curtain rods or on the window ledges. She was not visiting the other birds in that room. I quickly checked each of the dog crates thinking if she had landed in a one I would find at least a feather if she had been swallowed! (most are metal so a parrotlet could easily get inside)  NO Jade. I shuffled out (never pick up your feet cuz if you step on a 28 gram bird its not going to make it) to get the flashlight and shuffle back in the room. With the flashlight I start searching behind and under everything. Behind the breeder birds cages, cobwebs dust and feathers, but no bird. Behind the dresser, nope just more dust and hair. Under the dresser, its only and a small space under there, but cant see any of the hair moving. Whoa, do I need to vacuum in here!  No Jade. I am afraid to move too much, again, tiny bird, easy to squash. 

About this time one of the cats shows up. No you gotta go. Cat gets locked in the bathroom.  It's been about 25 minutes by now, and I am really starting to panic.  Where could she be? This is not a big room.  Could she have gone up the back stairs? The light was off, usually they don't fly into darkness, but is it possible?  I look behind Kazins crate, its a plastic one, I slide it a little bit away from the wall, nope.  Shine the flashlight everywhere I can think of. Finally I am sitting on the floor, after crawling around.  Magic is looking at me whining, Peace and Siren just look confused.  I hear, peep!  Now, the 3 other birds in the room, also parrotlets have been talking to me the whole time, but this peep sounded different.  Jade, Jade where are you?  Peep! I turn and look and here is the little bugger sitting on top of the dresser looking over at me!  I have no idea where she was hiding the little stinker.  I scooped her up and gave her a little talking to complete with lots of kisses and cuddles.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Monday Morning Blues

Its Monday. Yuck. I was sick last week, where I wound up staying home on Thursday and Friday, which is so unlike me.  That makes 4 days this month where I have been off work due to being sick.  The crud is going around my workplace like crazy and so they have actually been sending people home in an effort to try not to spread it, but unfortunately it seems unstoppable.  Today I actually have a voice, although my son says I mostly sound like ET.  Lets just say, yelling at the TV for the football game yesterday was interesting sound wise.  Because I was out sick last week, I didnt get my time card turned in either and with our new payroll system, my boss is having a heck of a time getting my time to show. So now I may not get paid right either. Almost makes me wish I were still at home!

The dogs however loved having me home with them.  Kazin my old dog, spent the last 5 days in bed with me. He was a happy boy. The others just leaped up and jumped on me periodically to make sure I was still alive and to remind me to feed them, that is whenever they were not confined to the tile floor due to the copius amounts of mud the last 2 weeks of rain and snow have thoughtfully provided.  

Peace is still buck naked, and I am starting to think she won't have enough hair to show next month.  Darn it! She is such a funny girl.  Yesterday during the football game I was (as usual) hollering at the TV.  Everytime I would yell, Peace would go to the TV and holler at it too.  Of course that would make us all laugh.  Do you know how hard it is to cough and laugh at the same time?  

Friday, October 23, 2009

snow, and rain and just plain yucky

The weather in Minneapolis lately has been less than pleasant. Cold and wet. Today, it is snowing, but its not staying. Its just messy. And I am sick. I have been sick for over a week and really am tired of it.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Halloween is coming

and Pumpkin Patch Primitive Quilts is having a giveaway.  Quilters out there, check it out and let them know I sent you.


Sunday, October 18, 2009

To Sit or not to SIT

So I knew we would be in trouble when the first station was a Sit Down Sit,  We had a minor conversation about the sit, but we did that one.


Guess what, another discussion about whether a sit is really necessary!

But we had some nice moments too, a lovely pivot!

In the end, althought it was not a pretty run, it was a Q with 4th place.   So we met that goal for the year.  Grace has her RA!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

A wing and a prayer



Last night we had a visitor.  A good sized red tailed hawk. I think it was a youngster, based on its rather confused state.  We have lots of red tails in Minnesota and you often see them sitting on the light poles by the freeway, but not too often in the middle of the city in my yard.  He appeared flying very low, low enought that I could feel the draft from his wings as he flew over my head.  He hung out for a while on the overhead wires, letting me take his picture a few times. then gave me a nod as if to say goodbye and off he went.  He was rather calm, but just his presence makes me wonder if he is OK?  I hope so.

Sorry the pictures are dark, it was a very grey overcast day.

Rally practice

Well, Sunday may be interesting.  I have tried practicing with Grace a bit this week, on and off.  At home she is heeling nicely, but of course its on leash as we really have no where to practice, off leash other than in the house.  I am too nervous about her deciding to run off to let her off leash outside. The last time she decided to play keep away, she toured our neighborhood quite extensively, and was not too cautious in the process.  Living smack dab in the middle of South Minneapolis, that is a lot of traffic, a lot of people and none of them as concerned for her as I am.

However, I did remember she would need to do a jump and then return to heel, so we got out the jump.  She was so happy to see the jump, I couldn't keep her away from it.  I think she is trying to tell me she wants to do more agility really. On the plus side she did confidently go out and over it and return to me, well after 5 or 6 times of racing around the house and zooming over and over it- a couple of times it looked like she was clearing 16 inches she was so exuberant. Once she settled back into the heeling the jump was good. 

We are going to go to TCOTCs open ring time on Friday, where I will get a true picture of where we are at.  Although with Grace, its never a certainty.  Love that goofy girl!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Afghan and Iron, and Music!

I just heard that Joyces boy Music was Winners dog both days last weekend!  Yeah Music.  Joyce also mentioned that Vegas seemed to enjoy his first hotel stay and his show site time. I havent seen him since shortly after he arrived, I bet he has grown.

Thanks for the good iron thoughts.  Yes, all of those things will help most people, but don't seem to do much for me unfortunately.Although I love iron rich foods, my body just doesn't accept the iron.   It has been a year since my last iron IV infusions.  My iron levels shouldn't be as low as I am feeling yet.  It's too soon!  But I will know soon, as I made an appointment for tomorrow to go have it checked again.   I suppose if I need to go for more infusions, I would rather do it now than when it is super cold outside. Right? Find the positives.

Here are a couple of layout options for my afghan.   Originally I was going to use this one, the original plan  was 10 different colored flowers.


But now I am thinking I want it bigger so maybe will do this one!  I most likely will be giving it away, so maybe the smaller version? I will most likely make all 10 flowers then decide, but don't mind hearing your preferences. In either case I have more to do.



Low Iron Laziness

Lazy just plain covers everything for me lately.  I haven't been blogging, I haven't been reading, I haven't been working the dogs. Honestly, I don't know what I have been doing, truthfully, its not much of anything. Lazy, but really its not just laziness. Lack of energy. Tired. Cold. Worn out and old.

My iron level is really low again.  Sounds so simple, but its amazing how much this affects a person. The iron affects the red blood cells, the ones that carry the oxygen around in your system. The oxygen that allows your system to function, your brain to think, your muscles to work and also to provide warmth.

So what do I do lately, I sit wrapped up in a blanket, watch TV and crochet. Thats about it. So sorry for the lack of updates, or pictures, but I really have nothing to report. Other than the growth of my afghan.  This weekend I started joining the hexagon motifs, and I have 5 flowers partially created.  They really look pretty, at least I think they do. Maybe tonight, if I find the energy I will take a picture or 2.

Peace sasy she rather likes this lazing around, blankets and pillows are great!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Crochet Along

I want to be sure you all know how nuts I am.  I started another project. Another one. Nuts I know.  I have blogged in the past about some of the things, the socks (stalled because I am nervous about the next step), the quilt (haven't gotten that back out lately), the new block of the month quilt I just started in September with my mom, and now I started a crochet afghan.  Its a crochet - along project on the Lion Yarn blog.  I have never been fond of granny squares, but this one is hexagons, so my goofy brain decided it was OK. Being a quilter, I have a hexagon quilt in the works, a grannys flower garden. This afghan will be a play on that.
And I am finding that I really like doing the hexagons.  I can complete one and see progress pretty quickly. And, unlike knitting, I can crochet and watch football, or anything else! I finished 5 hexes during the Vikings/Packers game last night!  I even did a couple at the dog show.    I hope to be posting my progress weekly.

PS- GO TWINS!  I have to work late tonight, and will be working during the entire game which is just blocks away from the office. I am hoping that the Twins can have as successful of a game today as the Vikings did last night. 

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Weekend

Well, it was a busy weekend for sure.  As I expected, Peace is still searching for that last point, but that is OK!  It gives us a chance to go out and play some more!  My friends fox terrier also is still looking for those elusive points, but really that too was expected.  However, he and I had a pretty successful showing yesterday, he managed to hold himself together and we didnt have a meltdown!  So that was really good.  Today his owner took him in and they didnt have quite as good of a time, but they did survive!

So on to the next.  Grace's Rally trial.

Friday, October 2, 2009

tomorrow is the day

where I get to experience showing a terrier.  It should be interesting.  I would feel much more confident about my job if the dog was comfortable with his, but he isn't.  We took him to class both Tuesday night and again last night.  He is getting better about somethings, but not others.  His table is better, he freezes into a rock hard statue, but he is not melting.  But on the floor, I just don't know what will happen.  Tuesday night, although he was moving a bit hesitantly, he moved.  Last night he slinked, and hung his head anf pulled. Outside the ring he is fine, head and tail up happy, walks beautifully on the leash. His entire issue is IN the rings.  The same person can go over him outside the ring, and he is fine.

The thing is, I know in my heart he could be "fixed" but I don't think his owner will commit to the time he would need. He has no 'reward" system, no special treat or toys, nothing to make the ring a better place.  He could learn to play, he most likely with some positive reinforcement clicker training he would develope the confidence to strut his stuff in the ring. But its not going to happen by randomly throwing him in the ring at shows every 3 months.  I do understand his owner not wanting to waste the money showing him (she uses a handler so it is a bit of an expense) but some obedience or a trick class or something to help him relax and have fun would do so much for him.

On Saturday he is the only boy, so would need BOW, not holding my breath. Sunday I am fairly certain the WFT and Cardi ring times will conflict.  Not sure what will happen there, although most likely I will try to do both, Peace is entered in Bred by so I cant just hand her off.  Peace has no undercoat at all so I am not expecting anything this weekend. Would love to get that single point, but realistically not expecting it.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

training with Grace

Sit - check
Down - check
Sit - what? I just laid down.
Grace Sit. Grumble
Grace Sit, mom reaches down and helps her back to sit. Whew that was easy, you should do that for me all the time!

Grace heel- check
Stop, no grace come back, Grace  da.. oh good girl.
heel- check
front.... well ok, but a bit crooked
Grace heel (left)   good gi.. no grace come back here...Grace GRACE!  good come.
lets go in hte house, Moms pooped.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

OK I did it.

I entered Grace. When I told her last night she yodelled back at me, wowoooo, hopefully that is a good sign.  Stay tuned for details....

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Do I dare (edited)

enter Grace in the Rally trial to try for that last RA leg?   We just need a score or 71....

Thanks for the thoughts, I probably should explain why I question trying.  Grace is a wonderful dog, but she definately has a mind of her own, not to mention her own agenda.  She has expressed her dissapointment in the judges courses by complaining when asked to do certain exercises.  Anyone remember the 3 steps back exercise  -step one  Bark bark grumble, sit, 2 steps back BARK bark grumble slow sit.  3 steps back Grumble moan sit BARK BARK bark(last one directed at the judge). Or the APDT trial where in the first run she managed to score a negative amount, but then in the next score a 204.

Now, in all honesty, her first RA leg was a 71 which she did in front of her breeder in Richester last year, making me oh so proud! (sarcasm) Her second was a 86 (i think), and she hasnt given me one of those no score runs since then, but with Grace it is always a possibility!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Another weekend passed

 This weekend was much busier than last.  Fall is in the air and fall chores have taken over a bit.  I did some canning, and some cleaning.  Started clearing out the garden of the things beyond their prime.  Made a wonderful soup for dinner last night with all the bits and peices, a handful of the last beans, some chard, kale, and cabbage, zucchini, carrots, the last 2 ears of corn, and the last few ripe tomatos. Turned out to be a wonderful mess.
 The dogs spent the weekend chasing each other around the yard and barking. Did I say barking, I should have said BARKING!  Siren and Peace need to learn that the entire neighborhood is not their watch. Peace has gotten so much worse about the barking since she was attacked. I need to figure out a solution to this soon, as the more she barks, the more Siren barks and I live in close proximity to many other people.
 We really did no training again this weekend, bad me.  I am finding it overwhelming lately, although maybe its just that there are so many things I feel I need to get done that I am spinning my wheels from job to job and not accomplishing as much as I would like. Need to get that under control too.  Part of it is probably my anemia though.  Its been a year since my last IV infusions, and I can tell the iron level is getting to the low point. I really don't want to do more infusions, but the exhaustion is starting and infusions are the only real option. But I am going to do all I can to forestall it - I am thinking liver for dinner, and as many other iron rich foods as I can.  (Honestly, I know it doesn't help much, my body just doesn't absorb it like it should, but if I can delay treatment a few months all the better)
 I hope everyone has a good week!  Hug a dog, its good for you.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Fur Flyin'

AARG! Wouldn't you know it, we are a week away from our next dog show. You know the one where I was praying we could pick up that last point.  Well guess who will be nekkid as a newborn by then.  Last night when I got home I reached down to give little miss Peace a cuddle, and handfuls of hair just sort of blew out. It was like a hair tornado! My vacuum can't even keep up.  Ok maybe a bit of an exageration, but honestly my pant legs were red.   Dang it.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Helping a friend

Last night I spent the evening helping out a friend of mine.  She has a wire fox terrier who needs 3 little points to be finished. This boy is very nice structurally.  A couple of years ago when I first met this boy he was a happy, super, confident boy complete with a terrier attitude.  She sent him off for 6 months with a handler.  In that time he was rarely shown, (as documented by the entry results showing absent time and time again).  He came home with one or two points, as a quivering shaking mess of a dog.  Oh, he is fine outside of a show/training environment, but bring him into a training situation or a show and he stresses out, big time.  Now during the last year and a half, he has made some improvement, and has been being handled by a different local handler, and had some successes, earning both his majors and just needing a few points to finish. 

Buster likes me, at least he used to, until I made the mistake of taking him to the drop in conformation class last night to practice and see if we could work together.  See, I am going to show him in a few weeks, since his regular handler isn't available for a while. Lets just say that after the class (which we ended early to not stress him as much) he wouldnt come and see me at all. We plan on visiting and practicing a little more over the next couple of weeks.  Poor guy, he gets so nervous about being in the ring, he shuts down.  I really like the little stinker, so I hope he will forgive me.

Speaking of forgiveness, my 4 at home sure were not happy about those other dog smells!  MOM how could you!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Monday, September 21, 2009

Lazy Weekend

Everyone needs a totally lazy weekend occasionally right? Well, I know I did. The dogs lazed around, and so did the people. I did a few errands, things that you know just need to be done, but nothing exciting. I did pick up a few more grapes at the farmers market and made some grape jam. The smell of grape jam is just so wonderful, I wish my house smelled like that all the time. I refuse to use the massive amounts of sugar that these recipes call for, so I usually use much less. It means my end result is less firm, but it is way more fruity. I put a few things on the dehydrator, but also really lazily. Lazy relaxing. Wish I could have a whole week of doing nothing.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Agility tonight

Tonight Magic and I had a really good night! We nailed the course the first time, with only one not so pretty cross, that although ugly, we made work. The second time through I overthought it and really mucked it up, but thats OK. We had 2 successful teeters, so hopefully teeter fear is over and done with. We had 2 sets of 12 weaves, popped the 10th pole the second time, but I think it was because he knew that the tunnel was coming so was taking the short cut. And we nailed every contact tonight even though he was running with speed. Yeah!
Unfortunately, it was our last class for a few months. We will be able to go back to agility this winter though. It was good to end class on a good note. Maybe we will try to get in a trial or two during the class hiatus, just so we dont totally lose what we have learned.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Canning Crazy

So lately I have been canning like crazy. Not big amounts of anything really, but 4-8 jars of various stuff. Tonight it was apple jelly, made the juice to do grape jelly tomorrow, used the pulp from the grapes to make grapplesauce, and also made spiced applesauce. Bought a watermelon for watermelon pickles later this week. Now, I want to be honest, I have never even eaten a watermelon pickle so I have no idea why I want to make them, but heck, I had never had a pickled green bean, and my husband has already eaten most of those that I canned earlier this year. I don't have a pressure canner, so am limited on what I can do, but I have also used the dehydrator quite a bit this year.
If I lived where I could have a giant garden I would love it! I think I was really meant to be a farmer.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Todays show

First let me say sorry, I didn't post all the winners from yesterday- BOB was Emily and Picasso, and BOS was Barb and Molly. Emily also picked up a group 4 yesterday.

Today at the RMKC show BOB- Emily and Picasso, WD - Mike and Norman, WB, BOW & BOS was Peace for another point. One more to go.

The Wright County Kennel Club show in Hutchinson is coming up, closes this week. Personally I would love to see us come up with a nice large entry since on Sunday we will have a breeder judge, Leah James. So anyone looking to travel a little, Minnesota in the fall is beautiful- come visit.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

A good show day

We had a good day today at the Rochester Kennel Club show. Peace earned 1 point for going Winners. She also was best Bred By. Music earned 2 points with Winners and Best of Winners. That makes 8 for Music and 13 for Peace.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Show Pics




The pictures from a couple of weeks ago finally came. These didnt turn out too badly, for a change. I usually look really bad, but these, not horrible. Peace looks pretty good, although her front legs are a little forward, I have seen and done worse!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Back to training

A while back I listed some training plans, and then life got in the way, and training sort of stopped. Well, really completely stopped, truth be told. So now that I have the (neverending)curtains done, I hope to get back to some training. Maybe I will be better at it if I set some goals?
So, Grace is going to finish her RA and her UKC RL1by the end of the year. Siren is going to attempt pre-novice sometime before the end of the year. (OK, honestly, I am not expecting success, just an attempt.) Magic will try to finish his UKC RL1. Peace gets a break as I really would just be happy finishing her Ch this year. She will work on not racing around the ring, some slower speed would be nice for her.

Can it be done, sure, will it? Time will tell.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Des Moines Dog Show


What a fun weekend in Des Moines. It was fun to show with so many people who don't often get up this way. And fun to see so many competitors too. There were no repeat winners this weekend either, not in the class or for breed.
Saturday Music was WD for 2 points. Peace was reserve both days.
I will say that todays judging was interesting to say the least. In a couple of the classes, she sort of threw her hands up, shrugged her shoulders, and acted like she didn't know what to do, and then just placed them in catalog order. It was just sort of odd seeming. When she got to winners though, she didn't have any trouble, and put up a lovely puppy. Nice judge and all, it just was odd.
David and I had a good time. It was a nice day for a drive back home. We dropped Music off with his Mom, got to see Bella and Vegas again too.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Long Holiday Weekend

Wishing everyone a safe, fun and happy long holiday weekend. Music, Peace and I are traveling down to Des Moines for the dog show. Maybe David too, but he doesnt yet know about the Sunday work schedule so who knows. I am taking some knitting along, since we show firs thing in the morning. Although last time I took some with I never touched it. We'll see.

Have a good weekend everyone.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Company tonight


Music came to visit tonight. He is going to a show with us this weekend. The girls are thrilled he is here. Joyce dropped him off tonight as she was close by picking up her darling new boy at the airport. This is Vegas.
He is just a darling boy. Handled the trip really well, came in the house here found a bone and settled right in. Joyce seems thrilled.




Curtains for a soccer field

Someday I need to learn to keep my thoughts to myself and not be so willing to help out. Many of the local clubs here in Minneapolis have their summer agility trials at the indoor soccer fields. Its a great venue, enough crating room, cool and comfortable with A/C. The facility has 2 fields with a bleacher section in the middle. However, the inside of the field is walled with glass. All of the clubs cover the glass for dog agility, often with paper, or tarps or even sheets hung over the wall. Which really isn't a problem, but paper tears, it has to come off between the trails and of course we often run out and wind up using other things. So smart me, at our clubs event, I made the smart statement that you know, it wouldn't be hard to make a re-usable curtain. Cheap muslin, some velcro and there you go. So now, I am making some soccer field curtains. OK, its really not a difficult project, but it is time consuming. I have to make 4 curtains for sure, 2 @ 28 feet long, and 2 @ 40 feet long. Possibly another 2 depending on how far around the field they want to go. The curtain itself is pretty easy, but all the tabs that will be needed to attach the curtain to the cable is the time consuming part. I calculated I need 54 tabs, all with velcro sewn on. Each tab is 1 inch wide, by 3 inches long, and it feels like they are taking me forever. I am only about half done with the tabs, not including attaching the velcro.
So, if I disappear for a while, come find me I may be lost somewhere under yards of muslin!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

More canning today

I love doing stuff like canning. Today I made a small batch of raspberry jelly, and a small batch of blueberry jam. I made another batch of the tomato sauce and then processed both batches. Froze the rest of the raspberries and most of the blueberries. Later this week we will do a small batch of pickles and some red & green pepper relish. I wish I didnt have to go to work, I am so in the mood to do the homebody things, quilting, gardening etc.

Busy Day

We were really busy today, but it made for a very nice day. A trip to the farmers market, picked up pork chops for dinner, corn, blueberries, cucumbers, tomatoes, garlic and eggs. Then run a few errands, dog food, fabric store, another fabric store, walmart, archivers. Then a run out to the apple orchard to pick apples and raspberries. Then home where we ate nummy pork chops and apple raspberry crisp. And then we made Maple Walnut Blueberry Conserves, and Blueberry Raspberry Jam, and tomato sauce(prepared, but not canned yet). Tomorrow we will make another batch of tomato sauce and can it, along with some pickles, and more jam or jelly-maybe jelly this time.
I also am making a set of curtains for a couple of soccer fields, hence the bunches of fabric. Busy days. The dogs felt left out, that is until they got new chew bones to enjoy.

Friday, August 28, 2009

No peppers tonight

but the dogs didnt seem to mind. Yes, I was fine with the slip yesterday, I really just slipped enough to lose my balance which caused the plate to flip up and the pepper to fly. I am not sure where the water came from. I wonder if a small peice of ice didnt fall out of the freezer or something. Who knows could have been a doggy master plan!

Tonight I took Magic and Peace to the dogpark. Its the first time since Peace was hurt. It was really interesting watching her. She was fine as long as there were large groups of dogs, but as the evening progressed and some left, she got concerned only when she was approached by a person(s) with a single dog. Didn't seem to matter what kind of dog either.

The dog park we like is a big open field with some trees and marshes surrounding most sides of the main area. There is a sandy worn, walking path around the outer perimeter and the inside is really grassy, with tall grasses and huge lumps and bumps. There are a few trails through the middle that the dogs have worn down, so they do criss cross if they like, but most dogs just go along with the owners running and playing in the general vicinity. Magic will go as far as the other side of the park without me if he can find another dog who will run that far. Tonight he found one that was willing to play chase in the tree area and boy did they seem to have fun. Everyone was laughing at Magic though, the grass is so high, so he runs and then leaps in the air to see for sure where he got off to. Both dogs were pooped when we left, but not too tired to stop off and roll in the mud and goo pondside. So both kids got baths. They stunk so bad!

Pepper from Heaven

Last night I made stuffed green peppers for dinner. The peppers were huge, one was easily a meal for a hungry person, so I made 4, one for each of us, and an extra for lunch for work the next day (or 2). As I am serving this last night, I slip on a little bit of water on the kitchen floor. It was just like a slow motion dream, I see this pepper fly off the plate, up in the air in front of my face and splat to the floor! Beef and rice everywhere. Ever see 4 corgis inhale my dinner? Good thing I made 1 extra.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Weaves

Shoot, I forgot to talk about our weaves last night. Last night his weaves were better than they have ever been! We had a section set up with 2 sets of six weave. The first set was straight on approach, the second set was at about a 45 degree angle about 8-10 feet from the first set, then there was a jump set up parallel to the weaves. Kind of like this \ __ -. So we started on the angled weave, turn to the next weave and sharply turn to the jump, wrap, weave weave. Magic nailed it with me on both sides, got all the entries, even the fairly sharp turn after the jump wrap, with some speed. NOT his usual walk through. So although he sometimes enters the on the wrong side with the 2x2s we have been rpacticing, something happened in his head, because there was no hesitation at all. It was probably the highlight of my night really. What a good boy!

Agility class

Last night at class we worked a full course. Often we just work on specific sections, and don't always do a whole course, but last night we did. The course was probably close to an excellent level course, except no weaves. We were working on some harder approaches including a jump with a wrap back around to the a frame. I found that Magic really doesn't see the sense in going around the jump wings when it is so much quicker to just back jump. When we practice figure 8 type wraps around a single jump he gets it, but apparently he wasn't making the connection last night. I realized though that I don't have a command for that wrap, so I may need to give it one. Or just not try to handle it from behind the jump with a wrap, if I handle it from the side, he wrapped correctly. Need to practice that.

The course also had a teeter, with the next obstacle being a tunnel, with the opening at about the midpoint of the teeter. Since Magic has had teeter issues, we haven't done many teeters, so last night I let him take it. He did really well stopping in the middle and controlling the teeter drop. I much prefer that for a cardigan than driving to the end and having the body take the pressure of the hard hit. We have some teachers who have tried to make us drive to the end, but I don't think they have enough leg to absorb the shock. I don't plan on ever competing to the point where that extra second will be an issue.

We also had a serpentine with 4 jumps, but were supposed to pull the dog out between jumps 3 and 4. Magic loves to jump though and although we saw his ears flick when I called him off jump 4, he seemed to ignore the call off. Both Michelle and I felt that I gave him the call off and pull between the jumps properly, because he seemed to take one step toward the area between, then he seemed to decide to take the jump anyway. He did sort of give me the "Later Mom" look that he gets when he is selectively listening.

However, when we put the whole course together at the end of the class, Magic had a very nice clean run. Too bad at a trial we can't have 2 tries!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

I think I have ADD

I know I have always had an issue with focus. I have a hard time just doing one thing, and I tend to work best when I am actually multi-tasking. However, my dogs don't respond as well to training when I can't stay focused. So now I need to make some decisions of what to do next and when and how to do it, then I need to stick to it.

Peace-Suddenly I have a dog who doesn't trust me. It could be one of 2 things, or a bit of both I suppose. First at the dog show I made her go by all them scary dogs. Then Sunday night at home I knocked her in the head with the frisbee. It was totally accidental, I was playing with Magic and her head just got in the way. So now we need to rebuild some trust. That is going to be my primary focus this next couple of weeks. Lots of one on one time with Peace.

Magic - well he is going to get a break for the most part. We are working on the 2 by 2 weaves, but honestly he is not getting the entries consistantly. I am going to give him a 2 week break on training other than our agility class.

Siren - David will continue to work with her, but I am going to incorporate some more fun type things like spins and touches along with the obedience.

Grace - Stays, stays and more stays, and sitting when asked. That no sitting in the ring thing was too well ingrained. When I ask her for a sit, she often just stretches her stance further. Goofy girl, last night she almost sretched herself into a frog down.

Dawn - Dawn needs to focus on one thing at a time too-I have the quilt to do, but I also have knitting. Last night I dragged down the scrapbooks and worked on Magics book. And his is the only one that is even close to up to date. I need to start Rinnies, and Peaces books, and Grace's is way out of date. One at a time, One at a time.

I know boring reading for you, but a way for me to focus. Sorry!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Dog Show Weekend recap


Today was day 3, of a really good weekend of showing. Peace earned her 2nd major today, again taking BOW & BOS, so now we only need 3 more points. Her next show is Des Moines, but the numbers are huge, so I pretty sure we wont pick them up there. There are some nice dogs down that direction. Peace handled the other dogs OK over the days, occasionally having some isues, but overall she survived. We will definately have to keep working on this though.

So the weekend was good for a few of the crew up here. Garrett finished his girl Zoe, and got another major on his Briard Mitcham, Diana finished her boy Boogie, Peace picked up 7 points and Music picked up 4. Several of my friends in other breeds had some wins too. I cant believe how much time I spent just yacking with people. All in all a terrific weekend.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Dog Show, Day 2

Today Peace won WB and BOW, BOS for a 3 point major. Dianas boy won WD and Dickens was again BOB. The weather was beautiful today, although there was still lots of mud and wetness from yesterday. Hopefully by tomorrow it will be dryer yet. Good weekend so far for Daybreake kids with 2 majors. No pictures today since non eof the family came along, but the phot with the judge might be interesting when it comes, she was wearing bright red, and I was wearing lime green.

Friday, August 21, 2009

NSHGC Specialty

Today was our clubs specialty. Nice turnout and lots of fun. Potluck was really good and quite a success.


Peace did OK today. She had a few moments of abject terror, but mostly she held it together. She was goofy in the ring, sometimes frightened othertimes seemly OK. We were outside a ring when a shepherd ran by, and that freaked her out, but she did recover. So we will see how tomorrow goes.


Now for the wonderful news, Music, (for those of you who remember the pups, he was Nine) won his first points, a nice 4 point major! Joyce was shocked and thrilled and so was I.


Another blogger friend has good news from the day too, but I will let them share it.


Lets see what tomorrow brings.
Sorry for the bad pictures, I really need a new camera, and probably a better operator.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Tornado yesterday

We had a tornado yesterday up here in Minneapolis. Fortunately it was a small one, as tornados go. But it was large enough to do some damage in Minneapolis. We were very lucky, the path was about 4 blocks away from us, but mainly blowing the damage to the west, not to the east where we are, so other than some small branches down, we were OK. Talies family too was OK, other than losing power. The path of the tornado was between their home and ours, but we were both spared, thanks be.

So I did not go to agility last night with Magic. I am coming down with a cold and felt really bad last night, so did not want to go and run in the rain and damp. Instead I went to the grocery store and made a salad for the potluck at work today. I also precooked the chicken for the salad for the potluck at the dogshow tomorrow. Tonight is the club meeting at he show site, and I hope to get set up for tomorrows show as well. Then when I get home tonight I can make the salad for tomorrow, get the dog ready and the car packed and hopefully get to bed before midnight.

Please cross your fingers for Peace tomorrow. she has been really nervous around other dogs since whe was hurt. I hope she does OK now at the show, and doesn't get too upset. She is such a funny girl, I hate to see her spirit broken.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The quilt


As you can see there are a few parts still in process, but I needed to get a feel for what colors to make the little stars, so we laid it all out. Rows 1,2 and 3 are all together, except for the sashing rows. This one is bright, but I like it so far. It was made from a monthly sample class, where the quilt store picked out the fabrics for the individual blocks. I, however decided ont he layout and the yellow sashing and small stars. We spent quite a bit of time on the layout, and I just now noticed the 2 nine patch center blocks next to each other on the bottom. I think I will need to move that<>

Busy week ahead

Its going to be a busy week this week, so last night I put the quilt away again for a while. But I did get it laid out and decisions made about what goes where. Tonight we will have to have our pre-show bath with Peace. Tomorrow is agility with Magic, Thursday is the Herding Group club meeting at the show site, and Friday morning is the Herding Groups specialty. Peace is entered all 3 days of the weekend, but is the only girl Saturday and Sunday. Since the entries are in and paid for, I will probably still show her and hope for cross over points. Thanks goodness this show is close to home.
David and Siren are continuing to work together. Grace and I practicved a little heeling yesterday too. She loves having my attention, but still prefers to do things on her schedule. Oh well!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Quilting and Dogs

For this first time in a long time I actually did some quilting. I worked on a small wall hanging, but now need to run out and get some batting and maybe a pretty backing fabric to finish it. Then I worked on a quilt that I had started a while back. As usual, I can never do anything simply, so of course the sashing for this quilt is harder and more complex than the individual blocks. I have only 3 large blocks left to sew, and about half the cornerstone blocks to do.

It seems I am the same with quilting as I am with the dogs. I have a hard time waiting until all the individual pieces are done before I start putting it together. I have a need to see something substantial for the work I have put in. So although all the parts are not done, I have started putting some pieces together. It's my need to see progress and my own personal reward I think.

Its the same with the dogs. I often enter events with my dogs, really before I am done with the training. I need to see that we are making progress. Its not that I need another persons judgement, it's that I need to feel that we are moving toward a goal, and those Q's or even NQ's give me a real feel for where we are. I don't think that I could ever be a person who has a dog trained through utility before entering novice. I wish I could be that person, but so far have not mastered that. So you will probably continue to see me at shows with half trained dogs. But I guess that is OK as long as that is what makes me happy. Right?

On the dog training side, this weekend David worked with Siren and I worked a bit with Peace. Grace is in season, and the boys are driving her crazy. Me too really, Kazin leave her alone, Magic get off Grace. At one point yesterday, Grace shut herself in the living room crate. I think she was fed up.

Friday, August 14, 2009

David and Siren

My son David has always been a cat person. He has grown up with dogs, but always just preferred the cats. With the puppies coming along, David became more and more interested in all the dogs. Dave voluntarily spent more time with Grace and the babies than I truly expected. Which resulted in his really badly wanting us to keep Siren. I had not planned on keeping 2 puppies, as I knew with Grace and Magic and a new pup I would have my hands full as far as training went. 2 pups, triple the work. So we made a deal, he could keep Rinnie, but he had to help train her, and I am expecting he title(AKC) her in something. Well, by 8 weeks I knew what a smart little girl she was so I started working with her. But then I stopped. This is his dog-he needs to do it, right? Fast forward to this summer and I have asked David to help out a bit at shows lately. He doesn't care for conformation, and won't even think about agility because he is anti exercise (his words). But he did run Magic through a couple of pulls at the weight pull trial and liked that. Last night I finally convinced him to start working with Siren on obedience, as that is the foundation he will need no matter what he goes on to do with her, right?
I had Rinnie heeling at 10 weeks, so its not new to her, but it is new to him. He was simply amazed at how smart his little girl is, she got it right away. amazing huh! I really hope he will stick to this. I am hoping I can get him to try rally with her still sometime this year. Fingers crossed!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Garden Update


The garden this year is doing better than ever. We have had an abundance of green beans, ample zuchinni and quite a bunch of tomatoes. We have pickled 4 jars of green beans, canned 4 quarts of tomatoes and dehydrated chard, kale, tomatoes and some of the last peas. It doesnt sound like much compared to a country garden, but remember this is in the middle of the city in a community garden and the spot we have is really not that big!
We had our last meal from the broccoli and cauliflower, so those came out today, along with the pea plants. Parts of the peas were still green, but with the heat they were not looking so good anymore. We replaced the peas with four more pepper plants. There may not be time for too many peppers from them, but heck, they were really cheap and if we get anything from them it will be great. Our cucumber plant never really got going, where it was planted it just got overwhelmed by the beans and got no sun, so we moved that.
This sunflower is growing in the bean trellis and is about 10 feet tall, with beans growing up to the top, where I can't reach them. There are still flowers on the beans, so more coming there, we have lots of tomatoes still ripening and the nicest cabbage I have ever grown still to come. We will probably harvest at least one of those soon, and will start some millet in the vacant spots. If we get enough growing time yet this year, the wildlife will eat that up. Heck, they usually get the millet before the snow flies, but this year I will try to cover it and keep it until late fall if I can. Hopefully I will be able to protect a couple of the sunflower heads until winter for the wildlife too, although David is determined that he will get to eat the seeds of at least one of them. Enough rambling. Enjoy summer!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Friday Nights Fundraiser

was a huge success! The raffle was simply amazing. I did not stay for the drawings, as I was not feeling well, but darn was there some wonderful items. I tried to win the lamb, some training sessions and event entries. The event was really well done. Talie and her family came and we played a little. She is such a friendly little girl, loves everyone which is so good to see.

The rest of the weekend was pretty quiet. Some knitting, some reading and a some nice cuddle time with the dogs.

Friday, August 7, 2009

They came so its official!

Ch Daybreakes Peaceful Dreams! FO UWP UCD Qwaynts Magic Spark!
Both dogs UKC certificates came today. Peace's Championship and Magics Family Obedience and United Weight Pull certificates. I know it's probably silly but I am so proud of my dogs, and those titles to me show how hard we have worked and the fun that we have together.

I know that a lot of people look down on the UKC titles, but I am very happy to have earned these. I like UKC shows, and enjoy working with the local clubs that do them. And I also like that UKC allows dogs to earn titles in sports that are not traditionally geared toward that breed, like a corgi in the dog sport classes, or weight pulling. Heck at the last weight pull there were several non traditional pulling type dogs and I think all of them qualified, and I think all of them placed in the classes. In fact the Old English Sheepdog not only placed in the weight pull, he went on and won Best in Show in conformation.
Plus, UKC rewards it members who earn multiple titles from different events. Along with Magics titles he received 2 $25.00 gift certificates. Thanks UKC!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Friday Night Fundraiser Fun Match

One of the most wonderful things I have seen in the dog world is how people come together for each other, in the good times, but more importantly in the bad times. Robin and Dan Kilbury recently lost thier home and thier canine family to a house fire. Many locals groups have gotten together and are having a fundraiser this Friday evening at TCOTC. Agility, Obedience, Rally, a raffle and bake sale.

Having gone through this many years ago, I know how devastating it can be. There are so many things that these people have to deal with, many of these things are things insurance cannot replace. One thing we can give these people is the support of thier friends, and a little extra cash to help cover the initial needs. While having a good time with our beloved pups.

So a fundraiser! Come out and work your dog in a match situation, buy some great baked goods and a few raffle tickets and share some goodwill. If you ever thought about doing performace with your pups, this is a good chance to give it a try. Any Grace pups wanting to try a sub novice obedience , or novice rally course? Come join us.