Saturday, October 25, 2008

Indianapolis Water Trial - Re-visited.....

I thought it might be fun to play with removing color from some of the pictures I took back in September. It's fun to play with different things that Photo Shop Elements can do. It's gives a new focal point to your pictures. There are so many fun bright colors in Portuguese Water Dog - Water Trials, I thought I'd focus on those.

First Mad Dog and I with her bright Red Buoy Ball. This was taken during her Versatility test.
The water was a tad bit "rough" which is why the boat is tilted as such a funny angle.

Next is Porter and his Bright RED harness! Porter and Judy are also working in Versatility. Here he is "marking" his float line that has been dropped out in the water. I removed a red collar that Porter was wearing. You've got to love PSE!

Breaking the "red" color theme is Mike and Ocea. Yep, it's an orange tote and if you think it's MINE you're CORRECT!! Mike borrowed my fishing net for net retrieve in Ocea's Courier Level test.

Here's Ocea again in Courier, this time with Kristi. This is probably my favorite picture.
Ocea has already jumped into the water and is now taking the buoy ball from Kristi to head out to do the drop. Good Girl OCEA!!!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Men and Cologne??

Is it just me? Or are men totally CLUELESS when it comes to using cologne? I'm not sure if there are directions on the back of the bottle?? Not that a man would read them anyway, but OMG!! I'm pretty sure it does NOT say BATHE in it!

I do understand that women have a better sense of smell than men (excluding Liz here), but can they honestly NOT tell when to STOP!!! A subtle hint might be when the bottle is almost empty and you just opened it!

So today, I had to take Carrie to the "plastic surgeon", she had a fight with a nice buck over the weekend and she won! You should have seen the other guy!!! G So, I drive into the garage and the insurance agent obviously used ZERO self control when he applied the cologne this am!

He took his time looking at all the damage and explained what he felt needed to be done. Very nice guy! However, my nose is now starting to run and my throat is beginning to constrict. I'm seriously wishing I had packed my epi-pen! Finally he's finished and goes back in the office to cut me a check. I pull Carrie around and go into the waiting room. Not his office mind you.

So, as I'm leaving I can still smell the cologne. He did NOT even enter the van!! I didn't shake hands with him, God knows I didn't rub against him....but I still smell that nasty cologne! So now, it's inside Carrie and I can't get rid of it. It's 47 degrees outside (in the sun - BTW - there's NOT a sun) and I'm driving with the windows down to get rid of the smell!!

I arrive at home, cold and wind blown. I boot up the computer, sit down to check my e-mail and there it is again! It's on my freaking sweatshirt!!! Into the laundry it goes. Honestly, it's like some annoying fly you just can't get away from. A thought..... OMG!!! The PAPER WORK and CHECK!!'s still inside the van...... in my work bag!!!! GOTTA RUN!!!!!

So please women and children. It's too late for Father's Day, but Christmas Season upon us. Please buy your man an ugly tie and not some smelly cologne! At least the tie only offend as long as you see it.....the cologne is with you for ........what seems like FOREVER!!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Seeker likes his Ladies....SHORT!!!!!

We were in IL over the weekend for an agility trial. Yes, I know.....BIG surprise!! What else do we really ever travel for?

Seeker isn't trialing yet, so he tends to bet rather bored just sitting in a "box" all day. After we were done running Mad and Kruz on Saturday, we got Seek out of the box and took the camera out to shoot some, I mean take some pictures! G

First some group shots....or in Addie's case, an individual shot as brother Pauly was home this weekend recovering from a foot sore.

Here's Kruz, (10.5 yrs) Mad Dog (8.5 yrs) and Seeker (16 months). Wow!! Where does the time go?? Looks like I'll be needing to re-do my blog header with updated pictures!!

Next is Addie, she's almost 3 years old and way too cute for words. Makes you "almost" want one...until she gives you the "Addi-Tude"!! G

Finally, there's Bea. She's 5 and it's amazing we could find her at an agility trial without drool coming out of her mouth!!!

So enough of the stationary stuff already!! Seeker and Addie wanted to play, so we just broke the rules and turned them loose! Seeker thought this was a great idea and let Addie just try and catch him!
Then Addie somehow found a way to cut him off at the pass!!!


So then Seeker would taunt her, staying just out of reach. He'd even go so far as to slow down so she'd feel like she was going to GET HIM!! Then he turn on the Turbo Boosters and zip by her.

When both of their tongues were dragging on the ground, it was time to end the fun. We'll do it again some other time.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Private Agility Lesson - and Egg Collection......

I decided that Seeker and I would really benefit from a few "private" agility lessons.
There are OBVIOUSLY some things we need to work on in order to gel as a team.....okay, so more than a few! G

Help was on its way! In the form of a 3'3" (??) 40 lb, 5 year old. Yes, I must admit, my personal trainer is a KID!!! The great thing about Natalie, is she's cute, kind, can do amazing things with her own dog and she's HONEST! Boy, do I need the honesty!! HA!

Natalie of course needed a ride out to our place, as she doesn't have a drivers license.....yet.
If they gave them to 5 years olds, she'd so have one!

I talked with Natalie's mom, Mary, last week regarding Natalie's first official agility trial coming up in December. I thought it might be a good idea to get together so Natalie would have a better understanding of what to expect at a trial. In other words, give her some 14-16 obstacle courses and see how she does. Of course being 5, she'd rather play than 'seriously' train, (which is probably why her dog is so good!), so the plan was to ask her if she'd be free on Sunday and help me train Seeker. Of course she said, YES!! I tossed in that maybe she could work Peach (her 3 year old Samoyed) and she thought that was a good idea. We had a DATE!!

Photo by:

So Sunday Mary, Natalie and Peach arrive for our lesson. We decide it might be best to work Peach first and Natalie is fine with that. She did remind me on several occasions that she will help me with Seeker when we're done. She was totally serious, and actually so was I. G

So finally it's time to get Seeker out. Natalie asks if I have a toy and some treats. I confirm that I did. She suggests we start in jumpers as it's only jumps and not as much to think about. I tell her that's a great idea as Seeker has been wanting to run around them vs. over them. She gives me a noncommittal "HUM" and we head to the jumpers yard.

"I want you to do 1-4", she tells me. "Let's see how he does with those, then we'll add a piece each time." Okay, I tell her. The first three obstacles are jumps, 4, is a set of 6 weave poles. How far should I lead out? I ask. Natalie tells me to lead out jump past number 1. So we complete our exercise and Natalie tells me "nice job" and "give him some treats." Which I do. Truth be known, Seeker just swallows the treats because they are in his face, he really doesn't "want" them. But who am I to argue? I am paying for this lesson after all!

So, the sets continue adding another obstacle as we go. It was too funny, Natalie would give me directions and tell me, "I'll be right over here if you have a question." WHAT SERVICE!!! Seeker dropped the second bar once and I asked her why she thought he did that. She thought a minute and said, "He didn't jump high enough." Well, I guess she's right!! G By that time we repeat 1-9 (yes, that's 5 additional runs) Seeker's tongue is now on the ground and I ask if maybe we can take a break.

Finally we head into the building to work on some Standard stuff. Seeker's problem in standard is he'll slide off the table...even if he's low and nails are digging. So she had me working close to the table and just feeding him for downing. Pretty darn good logic for a 5 year old. Most adults wouldn't be able to figure that out! Face it, building value close and then add distance! GEEZ!!! Natalie is a great teacher, she gives you positive feedback (even if you don't deserve it), she asks you to reward your dog and acknowledges your progress!! I highly recommend her!!

Now for her fee........

She wanted to see the chickens and collect eggs. Sure, we can do that. Armed with an egg carton, we're off to the "hog house". Long story short, we do have a chicken coop, but it has agility equipment stored in it. We also have a hog house, but no's bigger and further from the house, thus, our chickens live there. If that's confusing to you, you're not alone! (':

There are 8 eggs in the nest boxes, but Natalie thinks she should only take 6 and leave two to hatch. Who am I to argue, but I didn't mention they weren't going to hatch....the would my Tuesday night supper! So as she's leaving the chicken yard, she bends down toward the "girls" (aka - hens) and says, "Do you want to say good bye to your babies? I'll take good care of them." I'm pretty sure my mouth dropped open and I stuttered....I told Natalie she'd probably be better off eating them for breakfast. She assured me she knew just what to do with these eggs and she was very excited about having some baby birds. I looked at Mary helplessly and she just shrugged. I guess she's use to these kinds of things.

I checked with Mary today and the eggs are safely in their refrigerator. Natalie is refusing to eat them and Mary is thinking she'll need to camouflage them in cake. G

When is my next lesson? I'm not really sure, but I'm sure it'll be FUN!!!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Seeker's De-Butt!!

We decided to enter Seeker in an NADAC trial on Saturday. It was fairly close, relatively speaking, and we were going to go anyway, so what the heck. It was treated as a fun match to see where he's at with his training. He was entered in the Novice Standard classes (2 classes to be exact) where we could work on our dog walk and a-frame contacts (which caused several dogs some problems with it's rubber numbed surface and low height), right along with our start lines.

I knew going in what my criteria would be: If he broke his sit position at the start... GAME OVER!!! On the two contact pieces (NADAC feels the teeter isn't safe), if he missed his contact (2 on/2 off) then I'd put him back on. NADAC allows training in the ring, within limits. So this would be a great opportunity for us.

It was the end of the day by the time we got on course.....I'm talking END OF THE DAY, as we didn't even get into the ring until 5 PM or so. After sitting in a "box" all day, I'm sure Seeker was ready to do SOMETHING!!! ANYTHING!!!!!

Seeker's set up at the start line is to sit between my feet. I tell him "feet", he sits there until I release him. I don't tell him to stay, as sit/down, whatever means to hold that position until you're told to do something else. It's all he's ever known and it seems to work for him. I like this set up as I can go either to the right or left without having to worry about which side to set him up on.

At the trial I decided on the starts I would set him up and run away from him to get into position. In essence, I was testing his ability to hold position. To be honest, this is nothing different then what he's been asked to do at home or even at practice jumps at AKC trials, so I didn't think he's honestly break. He didn't.

I created a lot of Seeker's impulse control abilities come from playing CRATE GAMES! If you've never done these types of exercises with your dog, get some information on them and DO IT! It's not only fun, it's fantastic for training not only impulse control, but also drive. Anyway....I'm off track....again.

I couldn't have been more pleased with his start lines, weave poles and contacts. I told him to "bottom" and kept running until I got to the next jump, only then did I stop and release him. He was perfect!

Okay, I'll admit he TOTALLY missed his A-Frame contact on his first run. This was due to it only being 5' high and as he caught air over the top he got "nothing but net"!! In other words, his front feet hit the ground before his back feet hit the contact piece (so much for NADAC safety). He really tried, it just wasn't meant to be. I didn't take him back over because as soon as he landed he was stone still. He really tried!!!

Overall, it was an excellent experience. We have things to work on, like building value for those jumps and continued training on weaves. But I'm very happy with what he's done so far.

Sunday, October 5, 2008


Current House Temp - a pleasant 66 degrees

Finally I'm going to put in a new bathroom sink and faucet!! I've talked about it FOREVER and we were at Maynard's yesterday, both items were on sale, it seemed like FATE!! G

Sal (Aka - Bill) was NONE too PLEASED!!! He was grumbling how he didn't want to have to get "involved". I told him I was going to do this ALL BY MYSELF and he didn't need to worry about it. He rolled his eyes and said, "Sure, but as soon as you run into a problem, you throw up your hands and then I have to deal with it." I of course looked hurt and told him that I NEVER do THAT!!

First things First, I put on my "Do ANYTHING SOCKS". They are polar fleece and the tag claimed that by wearing these socks - you can do ANYTHING!!!

As I read the directions (This is actually a FIRST for me, I don't DO DIRECTIONS!) that evening, I realized I needed a few other items in order to do this properly. So this morning, back to Maynards we go. I figure if I'm going to make another trip that I might as well pick up some paint too and get rid of that one bathroom wall that's painted ZEST Green (it was suppose to be sage and it honestly looked sage at the store!!!!)

So I come home with my Quart of "Cow Polk" brown - I was looking for a tan color, but the tan all looked rather yellowish and when I saw this name, I was SOLD!!! Oh come on, how many of you haven't bought a color based on it's name alone??? That's what I thought! VBG

Getting started was fun!! First I had to remove the sink from the wall and vanity. It wasn't really too hard, the caulking holding the sink in place was long past it's life expectancy. I made sure to turn off the water and had towels placed inside the vanity and wrapped around the water pipes. I carefully unscrewed the pipes (they are all PVC these days) and put them in the bathtub so I wouldn't lose anything. The "J" Assembly (yes, I learned TECHNICAL TERMS!!!) was filled with - what I assumed was old plumber's putter. EEEWWWWWW!!!! It was due for a cleaning!

So with the sink out of the way I started on my first coat of Cow Polk Brown!! I've heard that green can be a challenge to cover and this was look as if two coats of paint would be in order. No problem, one wall, one quart, I should be fine.

As the first coat was drying I headed to the living room to attach the faucet to the new sink. SURE B PURDY!!!! I laid out all the tools and the parts along side the directions. I was almost done when Sal popped into the room to voice his support that I was actually using the directions!! GOOD JOB ME!!

I did NOT want to mess this job up!!! I'm getting pretty cocky by now, and was pretty sure I've found my calling. I'm going to switch career choice and become a plumber!! Mission accomplished I patted myself on my back, (not too hard) and headed back into the bathroom to check on the paint situation.

LOOKING GOOD!!! I applied the second coat, realizing that it's sometimes nice to be semi ambidextrous, especially when you're painting. I was able to make just as many mistakes with my right hand as with my left!!! Imagine that!!! Can you say, "TOUCH UP??"

Finally, the time has come to put on the NEW SINK!!!! I put on the bead of silicone, carefully carry the sink into the bathroom and place it on the vanity. (Yes, it does FIT!!! G) I hook up the hot and cold lines and the J assembly, with some confusion.....but it's on. The moment of truth!!!

I turn on the cold water, it's flowing nicely.....I turn on the hot water....PERFECT!!! WOW!! This really was easy!!!

WAIT!!! What the HECK!! A very small bead of water, it that a drip? I ask myself. I put my finger on the J assembly connection and it comes back damp. Wait, I bet my finger was damp when I put it up there the first time. No, it's so a drip!!! CRAP!!!! I wrestled around with it for another 30 minutes or so and finally I called Sal over to explain the problem to him. He shrugs his shoulders and turns to walk away.

STOP!!! I tell him. I'm going to go clean the pony stalls, why don't YOU see what YOU can do with this. He nods, with some hint of satisfaction on his face. WHAT?? I say, Nothing is his reply.

So tonight as I'm writing this (waiting for more paint to dry - as once you paint one wall, it leads to two, etc.) it's still dripping ever so slightly. So until we can come up with a solution, it looks as though you'll have to turn the water on under the sink first if you want to wash up. Just one more....You Might Be A Redneck If ...... at our house. Hey, since this house didn't even have plumbing until the 1970's, I'm not complaining!!

Here's a quick peek at our next sink, faucet and Cow Polk wall!!!!

(Someone really ought to clean that mirror!!! Maybe next weekend???)

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Fall Ritual - When is it "cold" enough??

I'm sure EVERYONE does it. Delaying turning on the furnace and putting those flannel sheets!!

It's almost like by doing these things you are giving up on Summer, and let's face it.....


So I watch the thermostat in the house and think about making comments about the "chill" in the air. This generally results in a variety of responses from Bill, none of which is: "Turn on the heat already!!" Luckily the thermostat is right by the computer, I can look over and see currently it's at 63 degrees. Honestly, it's not too bad since I have on cuddle duds (tops/bottoms), sweats (top and bottom) and slippers. Oh, I forgot the hot beverage, coffee at the moment. I also have a small desk lap, which is handy, as it's second function is a hand warmer when my fingers get too cold to type. You have to use caution, as it's gets really HOT!

This morning when I got up, it was at 59, so hey, it's progress!! I actually like sleeping in the cooler weather, so at least that doesn't me. Being cold during my waking hours isn't something I enjoy!!

I think Bill has some secret bet with the Weather Gods!! I'm not sure if he wins anything, but I know he's playing!! How long can I hold out before I have to turn the heat on? I wonder if he writes the date on a calendar every year? Somehow I wouldn't be surprised.

This year I've decided, I'm not going to say ANYTHING!!! Nope, I'll just put on more layers and pile on the dogs if need be. I'll even wear my coveralls in the house if that's what it takes. FREEZE BABY FREEZE!!!! I guess I'd better go and find Mad and Kruz's coats. Seeker is from up north where it's freezing already, so he's LOVING THIS!!

So, let me know....when do you turn on your furnace???