Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Oh dear

The fundraiser for the AKC WT and Kathie has been going very well!  No WT member was required to participate in it, but pretty much everyone did!

One downfall of doing a great job with the fundraising is that the ticketing process is not very streamlined.  I generated tickets (from a pretty handy site and sent them out to everyone and they had to print and assemble them into ticket books of 10 tickets/book.

(stay with me, this story is going somewhere)

They look really pretty in color but I'm sure most (or all!) printed them b/w.  I know I did!

After assembling them into ticket books and someone donates we have to write the person's name on each ticket.  For the first book of tickets I made the person write her own name on her tickets but she didn't seem to be so thrilled about it so I decided that going forward I would just write the names in for people.  Most people donated in multiples of 10 so I would write the name on the cover page and store it away to write the names on each ticket while watching tv in the evenings.

(there's a point to this, honest)

This is fine, but OMG this is inefficient since we've had lots of donations.  For example, Ashley Deacon donated his Steeplechase Winnings from two USDAA events, a total of $136.  That's a lot of name writing!

So, now to my point.

I'm about 1/3rd of the way through writing down names, removing staples and placing the ticket stubs in a ziplock bag for safe keeping.  I chose a ziplock bag because I don't want anything to happen to them on the trip to Germany (like, say, my shampoo leaks all over my clothing).  Pretty smart of me, eh?

I leave the bag of ticket stubs on the coffee table because I do a little bit most nights.  The bag has been there for a few weeks at least. 

But today is either my lucky day or my unlucky day.  I left for work and got about 5 minutes away before I realized I forgot my laptop at home.  So I had to turn around and come back home.  As soon as I entered the house I knew someone had been up to no good.  I wanted into the living room to find....

Oh dear!

Someone was trying to destroy the bag of ticket stubs!  Luckily no ticket stubs were destroyed, but there are a few tooth depressions in some of them...

I know the guilty party is not Foster and I'm PRETTY sure it's not Rampage.  I had to look at the forensic evidence to decide if it was Apollo or Icon.
I think the evidence clearly shows it was a team effort.  Icon worked on the upper left corner and Apollo on the lower right.  Their motive is still unknown.  The best theory I have to keep Icon appearing like the perfect dog I think he is, is that he wanted to give each of these tickets his own personal blessing.  Or maybe he saw Apollo trying to destroy the bag of ticket stubs and in his attempt to save them he also damaged it himself. 

All I know for sure is that I'm glad I came home when I did!  If the ticket stubs were destroyed it wouldn't be the end of the world because we have a ticket tracking spreadsheet where we record everyone's name beside the ticket number.  But boy that would not have been fun to re-create and re-name so many tickets!!!

Monday, September 20, 2010

WOW! Tunnel Bags!

Can you BELIEVE how great these turned out?

Nancy Holmseth from TunnelBags has designed and created these amazing tunnel bags.  Each star has the name of a team member embroidered on it.  This is a collector's item, to say the least!  These are the *GRAND PRIZE* in the USA WT giveaway! It's not too late to donate or participate!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

49% goofy, 51% business

We're making progress! 

Rampage is starting to figure out the game.  I wish I hadn't broken the flow after he didn't stop on his teeter because that's when the goofy began.  And when Rampage is on the table I'm not feeling myself up, I was just trying to stick my run order numbers back on.  One even fell off near the end and almost distracted him :)

I'm still not happy with our contacts.  I'm not a fan of the one-hit in the yellow execution that he had on his a-frame and his dogwalk looks like he takes small choppy steps instead of extending.   Powerpaws now has rubberized contacts and he seems so much more comfortable on them.  Icon also clearly prefers the rubber a-frame.  I really hope all agility organizations REQUIRE rubber contacts in the very near future.

SFD AKC - Rampage Open Standard from Agility Dogs on Vimeo.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

So cute

Sarah Johnson took these photos at the regionals at labor day and they really show Apollo's personality.  The little dog is Holly Newman's newest addition.

Apollo has always loved puppies and small dogs.

It's pretty hard for me to look at these photos because it shows how gray Apollo has become in his face. It's so odd to me because when I look at him every morning he looks exactly like he did when he was 2 years old.  I guess that means that it's me that's becoming senile :).  But that's ok so long as Apollo's smile wakes me up for years to come.  

Sunday, September 12, 2010

A day in the life of Pook

Pook is undeniably the most aggressive and effective beggar in my house.

Pook: Hey there, MeatLady! Why are you working on a Saturday night?

MeatLady: Hi Pook! Well I'm working because we have a production roll-out this weekend. It's just a small roll-out, but it will provide us some important timing information for a very large roll-out at the end of October.  So I need to collect metrics and ensure everything goes according to plan.

Pook: Uhm... (awkward silence)

Pook: So... Anyway... Something smells good. Did you put something on the BBQ?

MeatLady: Why yes, I'm grilling a steak!

Pook: Ooooh, a steak? YUM!

Pook: Can I have some?

MeatLady: Well Pook, I don't know... I need to keep my strength up so I can work and make enough money to buy you your cat food.

Pook: PLEEZE? I'm so old and cute!

MeatLady: Well OK, maybe just a piece


Thursday, September 9, 2010

To go or not to go...

My decision on whether or not to go to USDAA nationals this year has always been hinged on if we got our bye for SC and GP semi-finals. After our SC Finals run at regionals last weekend I thought my 'big decision' of whether to go was made. We missed the first weave entry and had to reload so I figured bye-bye bye. But it turns out the top 2 placement times were pretty slow so the SF bye qualifying time was quite generous. EVERY 26" dog in the SC finals who didn't E got a semi-finals bye!

So now that I have both bye's I need to make a decision. I have sent my entry in (only GP/SC, I don't have the vacation time or energy for DAM team) but I'm not fully committed until I purchase my flights. It would be fun to go but we'll have just arrived back from Germany 9 days before and the thought of jumping on another plane so soon after that makes me want to crawl into bed and not get out. Or maybe it's just the fall-like weather making me feel that way. :)


I had a great but tiring time at the Bay Team SW Regionals this year. My big mistake was entering THREE dogs in DAM team! That's a lot of runs in one day! But along with being tiring it was also fun, and all three of my teams got Q's. :) It was also pretty fun that Icon's DAM Team won! But I'm really excited about Rampage's first DAM Team Q. He performed very well for his team. We had a bar in Jumpers, a bar and a missed contact in Standard and did acceptably well in Gamblers and Snooker. But no E's which is the most important thing in team!

Rampage and I had a couple of recurring problems that I need to focus on, the main one being the fact that he popped out of the weaves in both SC Rd1 and GP Rd1. That's not a big deal in itself, but I didn't even notice that he popped out on either of them until I heard the whistle. That's some mighty bad handling on my part!

I wasn't happy with any of his contacts on the weekend. He was in on some, he was out on some, he got called for some he was in on and he got gifted on some he missed. But none of them were what I was looking for. His a-frame was especially discouraging for me because I was really happy with it the weekend before at the AKC trial. I don't mind if I eventually have to go to a stop on the dogwalk, but I refuse to go to a stop on the a-frame.

Some video highlights...

I was happy with Rammy's weave entrances all weekend. We had some nice stuff and some baby dog stuff in our SC run.

Bay Team Regional - Rampage SC1 from Agility Dogs on Vimeo.

BayTeam Regional - Rampage GP1 from Agility Dogs on Vimeo.

BayTeam Regional - Icon GP2 from Agility Dogs on Vimeo.

BayTeam Regional - Icon SC2 from Agility Dogs on Vimeo.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


We have a last minute surprise addition to the USA WT Giveaway Prize list! Nancy Holmseth from TunnelBags has offered to donate a set of patriotic red, white and blue TunnelBags for the giveaway! This might just beat out the softshell jacket for the title of 'first prize'. Maybe we'll call the TunnelBags the "GRAND PRIZE"!

It's not too late to get your giveaway ticket! Or to donate, of course :)

*09-Sept-2010 Update*

I just heard that Nancy is going to make these tunnel bags EXTRA SPECIAL. Stay tuned for details. I'm pretty excited about it!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Mensona AKC

This summer I have mostly been doing 1 day of AKC trials, mainly because it gets really really hot in Dixon and I know that on Saturday we're done by 10am or earlier so I just enter that day.  Other considerations are the cost of running three dogs.  Can you say *cha-ching!*  Of course we've had a ridiculously cool summer so my heat precautions weren't really necessary.  The cost precautions still were though...

But last weekend I went to a full THREE day trial Fri-Sun!  I even got to stay in my RV (I really miss that part of multiple day trialing.  I love my RV!)  And I couldn't have been happier with all of my boys!

Like a fine Napa wine, Apollo just gets better with age.  He had 6 gorgeous runs over the weekend with some 1st places :).  I messed him up on 2 runs so we only got 1 double Q but I'm having more fun than ever with him!

Mensona AKC - Apollo Friday JWW from Agility Dogs on Vimeo.

Icon had 3 picture perfect runs in a row, but on his 1st run on Saturday morning he was holding his right paw up for a bit after his run.  Of course I freaked out and had a vet friend look at him.  She found nothing but a bit of sensitivity in his 4th toe.  And he was fine after she checked him out.   But I scratched him from JWW and his Sunday runs.  It turns out he had a cut deep in the grooves of his pads, probably from stepping on a stone or something sharp on his last run.

Mensona AKC - Icon Friday Standard from Agility Dogs on Vimeo.

Rampage showed me his potential.  He has always been great at collection, but he showed some nice extension this weekend and OMG, this dog can turn!

(ignore everything that happens after Rammy takes the tunnel for the 2nd time)

Mensona AKC - Rampage Sunday JWW from Agility Dogs on Vimeo.

Can't forget Foster!  As ever, he was my loyal stable pony keeping all of the other dogs happy and in line :)