Saturday, October 20, 2012

Brooke Finally Did It!

October 14, 2012.  For those of you who may not know, we began our quest for Brooke's CDSP Open title a long time ago.  She got her first leg in March of 2010 (yes 2-1/2 years ago!).  After many NQs (I have it documented but don't even want to count) I decided to give it a break.  I had checked with the organization and they confirmed that qualifying legs do not expire :)  I knew she could do all the exercises because besides the one exercise she would NQ on (and it was never the same), her scores were pretty decent.  I wasn't quite ready to give up on her but she wasn't getting any younger.  

I contemplated and waited until the very last minute to enter the Versatile K9 Sports Club trial this past weekend.  It's seems a break with a little refresher training was exactly what she needed.  She qualified in the first trial under judge Linda Sperco with a 185.5 and took 3rd place.  I wasn't ready to get my hopes up for a title yet as we still needed one more leg and it could take another two years.  But she did it again in the second trial under judge Diane Cordero, this time with a 192 and 1st place!!

So finally at 10-1/2 years old Brooke is CH ARCHX Quantrels Ramblin' Brooke, RAE, CD, RL2X, RLV, CGC, CDX-C!!!  And yes, she did get steak for dinner that night ;)
I'm so glad we have the CDSP venue that allows exercise modification so our senior friends can still participate at lower jump heights.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Fountain of Youth

October 5, 2012.  Today was a beautiful day in NJ.  It was unseasonable warm at 80 degrees and sunny, perfect beach weather!  Maureen, Mary Beth and I took our senior ladies to Sandy Hook for some swimming.  Jenna (yellow Lab) is 7 years old and 11 weeks post-op, Posh (black Lab) is 8 years old and Brooke is 10-1/2 years old.  Despite their ages and health status, they all acted like puppies when we hit the beach.

Hey Labs, wait for me! - Brooke

Ewww Posh, that's all sandy you know.

Two bumpers for Jenna and none for Posh and Brooke.  
Hey, how'd that happen?

Wild Women, Posh and Brooke!

Jenna demonstrates the appropriate way to retrieve a bumper.  Brooke's just having fun.

Mary Beth, if you're not going to throw the bumper than I'll just take it from you - Brooke

Posh doing her best Baywatch babe impression.

Brooke wants to be a Baywatch babe too.

Posh, you're going the wrong way.

Time for Posh's close up.

Telling secrets?

Mom! I don't want to be on leash when everyone else is running free.

1 bumper, 3 dogs.  Let's go out in the 'V' formation.

Shake it out Jenna, it's time to go.

Silly Labs, you're getting all dirty laying in the sand. 
Please make sure to get my good side. - Brooke
3 friends enjoyed their beach day!
Posh, Brooke & Jenna

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Wine Country 2012

September 26 - 29, 2012.  Time to pack up and leave lovely Canada behind.  We're off to the Wine Country show circuit.  One last photo of the kids before we leave.  I wanted to get a picture of all 13 Weims but that was not possible so I tried to get our crew and Barb's since all these dogs were OK together.  Unfortunately the older ladies, Windy and Fanny, did not want to come out to be photographed.

From left to right: Brooke, Hetti, Sawyer, Desi, Sharon and Daisy

Desi was anxious to hit the road.  His suitcase is packed and he's ready to roll.

I drove my car and Scott picked up the RV we were renting.  Brooke was my co-pilot and Daisy tried to get as close to the front seat as possible.  I'm glad my purse made a good pillow for her.

Being Wine Country, of course the closer we got to the show site the darker the clouds got.  As soon as we got off the highway exit it started raining.  It is apparently a requirement to set up and break down our site in the pouring rain. 
The rental RV had fancy sinks.  There was plenty of room for all of us.
Thursday had decent weather but it poured all day on Friday so we spent the day shopping at the outlets. 

The weather was better on Saturday and we discovered that there was lure coursing on the show grounds and they were offering the Coursing Ability Test (CAT) that accepted day-of sign ups.  We decided to take Daisy and give it a try.  

She caught on right away that she had to chase the bags.
She was pretty speedy.
She had a great time!
And earned her first leg towards a CAT title.

We tried to go lure coursing again on Sunday but it started pouring a few dogs before Daisy's turn to run.  Daisy was NOT interested in running in the rain.  She started and turned right around and headed for the car.

It was just as well since I wouldn't want her to slip and get injured.  So we'll have to find some more lure coursing events to enter.  

Desi did not mind running in the rain.  The pully broke half way through his run but they got it fixed and sent him back out to complete the course.  He earned his first CAT leg and Barb learned they do have lure coursing in Canada through UKC so she can get Desi's title through that registry.

Time to pack up and go home.  Of course the rain continued and I had my 2nd annual falling down the RV stairs.  I guess that's becoming a tradition.  This time wasn't as bad as last year but I still felt it the next day, ouch!  Oh well, overall it was a good trip with lots of laughs with friends and that's why we go.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

City Slickers, Swimming and Golf

September 25, 2012.  Today we went horseback riding.  Among the 8 of us we had varying degrees of experience.  And I kid you not when I say the trail guide's name was Crusty, or Cranky as I liked to call him.  Seriously, it was right out of the movie City Slickers.  I was yelled at several times by Crusty and not allowed to bring my camera on the trail ride.  Luckily Johnny was able to bring his camera and the assistant guide, MJ, took pictures for us.

Phyllis was a good sport and got on the demo barrel so Crusty could give us some tips before we hit the trail.

We all looked really cool in our helmets.  Some of us got the super cool cowboy hat helmets.  I was not one of them. 
Right before we were ready to mount, Crusty's horse bolted.  Not really reassuring for those of us who were more novice with riding.
We were quite the gang of riders.  It was a beautiful countryside.
Scott was one of Crusty's favorites.  He was an excellent rider...brownoser!
Crusty was picking on me from the beginning so it was a bit of a stressful ride as you can see from my concentration face.
 Johnny and Nadine had well behaved horses. Mine came with special instructions...lucky me.
My nemesis Crusty.  Doesn't he look mean??
When we put the horses back in the field they were rolling on their backs.  I had never seen this before.  Guess they were glad to be rid of us humans off their backs. 
When we got back to the house it was time for the dogs to swim!
Sawyer would retrieve all day if I let him.  He's trying to figure out how he can get both of these bumpers.
Even Brooke swam!  I was shocked.  She jumped in, went after bumpers, even chasing Sawyer for his. 
She just swam across the pond as a short cut.  She was like an alligator slinking out of the water.
Sawyer says 'Really, Larry, can't you get your own bumper?'  Larry thought it was much easier to grab from the others who went into the water to retrieve.
Sharon did not go swimming but did have fun running around the pond.
Perhaps Daisy needs goggles so she can swim with her eyes open.
Larry and Brooke take a time out to stop at the salad buffet.
Puppy Larry got in a swim too.

Sawyer is a swimming fool and just loves it. He actually shakes to go back in.
After swim time the boys played a round of golf.  Barb & Frank built their own 9 hole course on the property.  It's tricky, passing the pond several times.
John retrieves his ball from the pond, not the first and certainly not the last for the guys.
And what's golf without a cigarette and scotch, right Frank.
Kurplunk!...see the ball in the top right of the photo about to plunge into the pond.  Good thing they had floatable golf balls. 
This looks like the great debate of who has to retrieve the ball, Scott or Johnny.  There's got to be a better solution.
Good thing the dogs are able to help out with retrieving the balls...too bad they were grabbing them off the course rather than out of the water.  Silly Dude and Larry!
Now I don't play golf myself but this looks like a difficult shot for John.
By the end Scott was getting the hang of it.  Look at this great shot!

Monday, September 24, 2012

The Falls...Not the Crappy Side

September 24, 2012.  Scott and I took a day trip to Niagara Falls today.  According to our friend Barb, a Canadian, we had to see the "good side of the falls, not the crappy American side."  It was a beautiful day and we did several touristy things. 

Double Rainbow and a view of the (crappy) American side.
Spectacular Horseshoe Falls (Canada side) with the Maid of the Mist.
Maid of the Mist under a rainbow.
And what would a trip to the falls be without going on the Maid of the Mist.  You can't actually take pictures while on the boat because it is VERY wet.
The still photos don’t really justify the power of the falls so I took a short video clip.
We ate dinner at the rotating dining room in Skylon Tower.  Yes, you have to get there on that outside elevator...Yikes!
It was worth it to see the view!  Even of the US side.

And Canada, Eh!

We didn’t get to this attraction which I called the Niagara Eye…as in London, so we'll have to come back.

We did walk through the Casino but didn’t have enough time for Scott to join a game of poker.  I was so bummed…Not!