Thursday, March 29, 2012

You Really Can't Go Home Again

It’s always a little weird to visit the town I grew up in. Well, one of them, anyway. On one hand, the area always seems a little stuck in time to me. On the other, though, so totally different. I suppose it’s sort of like seeing someone you went to school with and haven’t seen in 20+ years. You know them, but only as their 18 year old self. Familiar and, yet, not at all.

One thing that never changes is my love of open space. Maybe a product of growing up in the Midwest?
McGinnis Slough

That is one of the things I disliked about living in NH. Too many damn trees! Sparse, OK. In the distance, OK. Nothing but trees? Yuck! I want to SEE! I do enjoy being in the woods, but I would also like the option of NOT being in the woods. I remember talking to someone when I was in NH about perhaps going to VT for a long weekend. She was also a Midwesterner. Her response to my weekend idea was, “Why bother spending the money on gas? It looks exactly like NH.” Ha! True dat.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not totally hatin’ on trees. Just in smaller doses, perhaps.


Also, photographing anything in the woods is a total pain in the ass. Poor camera damn-near had an aneurism trying to figure out what to focus on.

Northern Cardinal

A little available sky, though? Much better.

Eastern Bluebird

Or some open ground?


The weather was unreal. Three layers in San Jose, T-shirt in Chicago.
20° warmer than in CA is odd.
Spring was certainly in the air.

Lots of showing off.

American Robin


And screaming about how handsome one is.


Red-winged Blackbird

And proving it.

Red-winged Blackbird

Some just getting right down to business.


And then fruits of previous business

Painted Turtle Hatchling

How cute, right?!?!

I almost stepped on him in the parking lot

Painted Turtle Hatchling

Not happy about being picked up, but I wanted to move him out of traffic anyway. I’m sure he’s over it by now.

Painted Turtle Hatchling

I hope they don’t end up with another frost out there. Will be an ugly summer if they do.


And the girls did fine on their not-so-vacation. I asked them to bath them for me. Kate came home all shiny and clean. Bella? Not so much. Apparently, she would not stay in the tub for the groomer. Just all kinds of NO! She was afraid that she would hurt herself so she didn’t bath her. I cannot tell you how weird that is. I could see Kate doing that, not Bella though. Bella does not enjoy a bath, tolerates it, but is good about it. This would have been her second time being groomed by someone other than me. I wonder if the dryer freaked her out last time? Dunno. Weird, though.

I guess I have to put that on my to-do list now.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Agility Hooky. A Post About Nothing, Really

We were supposed to go a triallin’ last Saturday.

Totally did not.

The weather has been weird. No winter all winter then, bam, all of it in a week. Had we planned the whole weekend we probably would have gone. Two hours up and back in one day, though? In this weather? Meh. Two turns into 3, more if there are accidents.

Screw that.

Plus, the weekend before Bella started looking like this…

More couch and less car, please?

No, really, can we go?

We stayed home. Took them for their normal morning run then hit the sack.

All caps LAZY.

Watched season 2 of Downton Abbey in its entirety. No complaints from anyone. I guess we needed it. I actually said to myself…wow, look at the time, I should get ready for bed. That consisted of getting out of bed, brushing my teeth, and getting back in bed. A party house it is not.

The girls will be boarding again over the …long for me…weekend. I don’t normally do resolutions. This year, though? I declare the Year Of The Vacation. Was going to go to Spain this month. I needed the end, they needed the beginning. So, Illinois instead. Perhaps I can get some paella in Chicago and be none the wiser?

I feel much better about boarding them after their good time last summer.


Happy Pants they will be.

This one usually is, anyway.

And how much she uses her toes? Weird.

No wonder she has arthritis. She looks like she thinks she’s going to float away.

And, I didn’t have much prep for this trip. Just needed to get a non-dog windbreaker/rain jacket-y kind of thing. One that doesn’t have a little melted bit on the elbow from possibly standing too close to a propane heater at a trial. Didn’t want to go to REI and spend 200 dollars on 2 dollars’ worth of fabric. My housemate suggested Burlington Coat Factory. Didn’t even know it was there. I have never been to one before. You know what they are in seriously short supply of at Burlington Coat Factory?


Seriously. The coats were tucked away in the farthest corner of the ginormous store and took up about 8% of the floor space. WTF? Time for a name change? Also, they had Members Only jackets.


Really? Do they still make those or have they been hanging there since 1982?

Last bit of randomness for today. Uneasy company.

I know, crappy shot. They were really far away and rude enough to be on the wrong side of the sun. A crow keeping tabs on a Cooper’s Hawk.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Pictures That Move

I rarely buy vids anymore.  Getting cheaper as I get older, perhaps?  Last weekend, though?  Eh, why not?

It's so funny how Bella is always looking, looking, looking.  I am always behind in telling her where to go.  With jumps anyway.  Bella's commitment point is about an inch and a half away.  She has never knocked a bar, but has crashed 3 jumps reacting to my bad timing.  No thanks.  So, if it makes me comfortable to be a bit late and let her finish what she's doing.  OK. 
Maybe I'll actually train the next dog.  :-)

This Snooker looked great on paper for a 3 sevens run.  IRL?  Holy cow!  So much real estate.  That is some spread out shiz!  We opted for 5-7-7 instead.

And she is always looking, looking, looking...until she isn't.  Oh, now you want to pay attention to where I am?  Under the aframe, Bella, really?  Haha!  Fun run, otherwise.

And stupid Colors.  This should be renamed the Dollar Per Obstacle Class.  Colors now DPOC.  Although, see?  She can actually do a half way decent serpentine when I am where I should be!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

If I Knew Then...No Counting!

I probably would have gotten goldfish instead.

Ok, maybe not fish. They are kinda hard to cuddle with. Although, you can totally teach fish agility now. See? Fish Training! They have hoops. NADAC fish agility.

I probably would not have gotten curious about how much money I have spent on agility. If you have not done agility forensic accounting already, do not. Don’t. Just don’t. Really, you won’t be happy.

It was a car!

A really nice cars’ worth of cash I have spent for the pleasure of getting up really early on weekends, sleeping in hotels with cement beds and questionable people in the parking lot and either freezing my ass off or sweating buckets. And, I have only been trailing for 4 years. And, I don't trial all that much. Some of you old-timers? Probably a house by now. Maybe a Nebraska house and not a Bay Area house, but still, HOUSE!

We have some nerve ever thinking there is something wrong with our dogs.

So they decided to go in the wrong end of a tunnel or skip that yellow bit on a contact. Whoopty-do.

Are they the ones spending the equivalent of the GDP of Samoa to walk around in little circles with 50 other people with stopwatches pointing at nothing?

Perhaps we need the time out?


To read the rest of the blogs participating today swing by Dog Agility Blog Events

Monday, March 5, 2012

Our Very Own BFR

I’ll let you go ahead and figure the BFR out.

Although, as a hint, B is for big and R is for ribbon. Use whatever F you are comfortable with. If you spend Sunday mornings in a building with a pointy roof, maybe you want to go with Big FUN Ribbon.

Not my choice, but I try not to judge.

This thing is ridiculous

I don’t know what to do with it.

A festive hat?


Bella prefers Frisbee

That’s good, clean fun

Or even just chew toy. She really enjoyed the mouth feel of the rosette part

Apart from the ribbon storage issue, we have the naming issue. I already have a Kate. Having a CATE Bella is just weird. I think we are going to go with 5K Bella.

This is not a pic of Kate and CATE Bella. It’s Kate and 5K Bella.

And I am not pointing a gun at them, swear

Although, the chances of it actually happening are slim, a CATE Kate would be awesome.

Bella had 2 weekend highlights and neither of them was our CATE run.

First, since Auntie Marie drove all the way up to cheer us on, they both got rewarded with a FullHouse run. I love watching other people run Bella. She will run for anyone, but tends to get a bit giddy with the novelty of it all. More like Rocking Horse then collie. So funny. They Q’d, too!

Second, she thought her gift from Wendy was Da Bomb! Bella is a little obsessed with skin care products. Lotion, sun screen, makeup, whatev’. If it goes on, she’ll lick it off. So, what did she get for being the good point gathering girl she is?

A selection of lip balms, of course!

We tried to share with Kate

But, being that she is not a connoisseur of All Things Skin Care, she only had this to say…

Bella spent some time coveting

She decided the vanilla was her fav

No, really, FAV

Seriously, she likes it and she ain’t sharing.

I had several people ask me what I was going to do now. Like, this is some sort of end of something. I guess since it wasn’t really a goal to begin with, I am just going to do what we have been doing…go to trials, do our best, have some fun and hope no one breaks anything.

Good girl, 5K, good girl.