Wednesday, November 30, 2011

USDAA weekend

Am so looking forward to this weekend!  Had initially thought of pulling all entries to the end of the year since the big plumbing debacle and now the doctor's bills for the upcoming baby but I have decided i need my sanity and that is achieved through dog showing.  Yeah, may have to cut back to two days or less classes but i have to have my dog shows.  I have another USDAA show at the end of december that i am waiting to enter till i finish this one and see what classes I absolutely need to enter.  Am doing team so hoping all this work we have done on weave entries is going to pay off.  I still remember that first USDAA show where I did team (his third show ever and first USDAA show) and the poles were 22s and I hadn't done 22s with him in a long long time and he wouldn't or couldn't weave to save his life.  My poor team was the only team that didn't qualify thanks to deuce getting an E in practically every course that had weaves LOL!

I am also very excited that mom is meeting us in st. louis as long as their snow stops and the roads clear up.  Who would have thought that TN would have gotten more snow or snow period before KS?  So weird!!!!  Anyway, I need this weekend, need to clear my head and see my friends.  Agility friends really are the best in the whole world and I need some agility friend therapy!  Plus I love running on turf at Purina.  The videos always look good and the pictures turn out really good because of the lighting and deuce LOVES the rubber coated contacts.  Hopefully I will have a good report after the show!  I would like to get him into masters by the end of this year and I think he could do it!  Also still want to get those elusive Qs so I can go to regionals this year since they are in KS and nationals since it is in CO.  Good excuse to buy the baby it's first snow suit:)

This was from the first time we ran at Purina.  Lots of little baby dog bobbles but i loved how fast he ran!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Stella update

Been trying to write a year end wrap up blog about deuce's first year of trialing and I just can't seem to get the words together like i want to. SO, instead I am going to blog about miss stella.  Miss, I am the naughtiest dog ever, stella.  Alot of what happens is my fault and I know it.  She is too young to be trusted as much as i give her and so when I am cleaning up after her, I know it is my fault and until I get some balls, it is going to continue.  She always tends to fool me into believing that she is over what ever stage we were battling.  The latest stage is her barking like a mad woman at any noise downstairs in the middle of the night.  I think she hears my hubby down there (he falls asleep on the couch alot) but sometimes I have no clue what is setting her off and I just don't want to know what it is.  I am hoping we pass this phase before the baby comes because I will probably come unglued if she wakes up a sleeping baby!!!!!  We seem to be (knocking on wood) getting over the potty training issues we were having.  Again, these are a lot my fault as I very early let her start sleeping in the bed and trusting that she would wake me up when she got off the bed to go potty on the carpet.  For whatever reason, she wasn't waking me up and I would get up in the morning to multiple pee spots.  Easy fix right, put  her ass in a crate, but I just can't and I am not sure why.  Maybe because of the way she snuggles up to me every night like deuce does?  Anyway, she seems to always wake up around 4 am so I take her out every morning just in case.  As long as I get up and do this, there are zero accidents.  She is also still having accidents in her crate randomly.  We tried putting towels instead of a nice bed and that helped a little but she seems quite content peeing on her bedding and then laying in it.  I am going to try the bed again this week and see if anything has changed.

Stella is probably the most active aussie we have ever had and as long as her activity requirements are met, she is fine.  Don't meet those requirements and watch out.  This morning i just wanted 30 more minutes of sleep, a BIG mistake.  She brought me a measuring spoon, some toilet tissue, the paper towels I used to clean up a vomit mess, and an oven mitt.  She is also a horrible counter surfer so if we don't watch her like a hawk, she is in the kitchen getting whatever she can off of the counter.  We are considering in our kitchen remodel to put up a gate into the cooking part of the kitchen to prevent both her and harley from getting to the counters.   I am sure harley taught her how fun this habit is.  He learned it from a foster dog at some point.  He has also taught her the finer points of eating poo so we are battling that as well right now with both of them.  I try and keep the yard spotless but I just can't keep up sometimes and hubby doesn't help at all with this, yet complains when they have poo breath.  Ah, the joys of raising a puppy!!!!!

Agility wise, things are going pretty slow.  Tony gets motivated and does little things with her but I for the most part do most of the training.  We have been working on channel weaves lately with the channels way out and she is such a quick learner.  I still don't think she has the body control to start plank work for her running contacts so that will be put on hold till she does.  I don't have any illusions of running her anytime soon since the baby will cut into my showing and tony's showing and money so she will have plenty of time to mature.  I do love the fact that she catches onto things so quickly, so much more quickly than Deuce ever did.  Or course she is a girl so that helps;)  She is doing great with her foundation work and that may be what we stick with for quite a while.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

sigh...bye bye agility?

Well, the plumbing debacle is coming to a close and I am very, very upset but trying to hold it back.  There is still another day of work but as of tonight (7 days later) we do have plumbing including flushing toilets, showers, dish water and laundry water.  The amount of contractors that have been at our house is staggering including the original plumbers, pipe fitters, concrete cutters, concrete pourers, excavators, and the estimators for the job.  I really, really don't want to get the bill.  I guess the good news is that they are saying we won't have a bill for a while.  That may mean I can at least get through a couple of trials before I have to hang it up for a while.  Went to the bank today hoping for the best.  Unfortunately, since we have only paid on our house for 5 years, we can't really get a good deal on a refinance.  We can lower our interest rate which certainly helps but the best we could do was to do another 30 year loan and lower our payments by 160 bucks.  We also couldn't roll in the construction costs to the loan so we are either going to have to do a second mortgage on our house or some sort of home equity line of credit for like 15 or so years.  I guess we will do what we have to do but I know our budget and if we add another mortgage plus a new baby that has to have daycare,  I probably won't be able to do dog shows for quite a while.  I have very slim hope that maybe i can still do the local ones in lawrence and maybe in KC if I can stay with someone and maybe cut back to 2 day shows.  Something is better than nothing so I will do what i need to do to keep up my addiction.  If i can continue to teach through the winter, I might be able to keep enough money in my business account to pay for shows.  I so hope I can stay healthy and have a mild winter so i can do so.  I can't imagine my life without dog agility.  I know that sounds so silly but i just can't.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Wichita Dog show weekend Fall

Wow, in a really weird mood, probably shouldn't write.  In the middle of dealing with major plumbing problems that could take up to 5 K to fix.  I am hoping they over estimated it and it will be less but I have a suspicion it won't.  They are on day three of trying to get this fixed and I am getting a little upset over the whole deal.  We haven't had a shower or toilet in 5 days now which didn't affect me this weekend as I was at the dog show but does now.  Took a shower at a friend's house last night but really, really hoping they can fix it today so we can take a shower in our own bathroom and pee in our own toilet.  Mcdonalds is getting a little tired of seeing us:)  It just sucks because here I was freaking out about doing agility and having to pay for a baby and now I have to factor in probably paying off a loan too.  So much for taking a break over the winter from teaching.  Going to try and see if I can get  another set of classes in, maybe just my advanced handlers.  They totally understand when the weather is too bad to be out in it and holding off to finish the session till it gets better weather wise.    I also need to rethink the 250 bucks I was going to spend on the St. louis new years show.  May not be a good idea now.  May just be a good idea to take the winter off from showing, but that makes me SUPER sad.  Looks like we probably only have one show in our area in january and one in february and they are both in lawrence so close and local so maybe not as much expense and i can swing it.  Here i was ramping up to do more with deuce, to attend lots of seminars and lessons and classes and now, shut the barn door, forget about it.  Okay, done with my pity party, on to my weekend, which was AWESOME.

Deuce had a great weekend except one run and I am so proud of him.  We still had little bobbles here and there but they were minor compared to what we have had in the past.  Perfect runs except one bar or one missed weave pole entry which is a tiny bit frustrating BUT at the same time he has come so far.  The surface was less than ideal but i can't complain about that.  I am sure that is why he had two bars in his first run in JWW as the rest was perfect.  He was one second off of Dixie's time and she had two bars as well.  The ring actually had corn rolls as someone commented and that was the truth.  We had one really bad run that started off beautifully.  I got this really cool blind cross where I sent him to a jump and tunnel and took off and got the blind cross in and sent him to the weaves and he missed them.  As I was bringing him back, I commented that this is getting old, and it totally stressed him out and he ran off and tried to squat in the ring.  Now granted, I had given him a bone the night before and that had torn up his stomach but he has never squatted in the ring.   I was so embarrassed, got him out before the did anything but then he didn't even poop in the grass when I took him out.  I felt horrible that saying what I said stressed him out that much.  Of course he was fine the next run and ran beautifully(got his weaves, missed a jump thanks to me)  so that makes me feel good that at least he can bounce back from a stressful run.  This trial was the trial i started him at and I need to do a bloopers reel to share on here since FB and youtube seem to take all the music I put on the videos and strip them.  I feel like we have made so much progress but still have so far to go.  I am really hoping that this pregnancy is a good one, that I can stay on my feet as long as possible and run and practice as much as I can and that this plumbing issue is cheaper than I hope.  I am pretty driven so if I have to pick up another job to keep up my hobby I will, even if my body wants me to just sit down and rest.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

vacation and lack of energy and how that affects baby-D

Last day of my vacation, back to the grind tomorrow.  I have to stay, even with the morning sickness and overall feeling of exhaustion, tony and i had a really, really fun time.  We have never had a real vacation, especially without the dogs ever.  We never even had a honeymoon!  So this was kind of like all of those things rolled into one.  We were very lucky in that my mom came up from TN and house and puppy sat for us while we were gone.  Tony was in meetings pretty much till 4:30 everyday but I busied myself with museums and tours while he was busy.  Eating was here and there, sometimes I could eat and most times I couldn't, yet I still managed to gain 2 lbs:)  I had lost 4 so I am kind of happy about that.  For whatever reason I like eating sweet things in the morning and having my full fat lattes (yes, I allow myself one caffeinated drink a day) and of course I have switched over to regular soda (mainly sierra mist since it uses real sugar) so I am sure those calories alone are what are packing on the weight.  Anyway, got to see the voodoo museum, the aquarium, the pharmacy museum, a city tour and a cemetery tour.  Tony got to do the city tour and the aquarium and also we did a swamp tour together.  For whatever reason, my appetite always came back at night so we had some good dinners including Dickie Brennan's steak house (best prime rib and mashed sweet potatoes ever) and Coop's fried chicken.  I am not a big seafood person so tony had oysters and seafood gumbo and all that fun seafood stuff.  Seafood made my stomach turn a little and i have never been a seafood person anyway so I didn't miss it.
Now onto me whining about being pregnant.  Don't get me wrong, this is a huge miracle and I am very happy that we are experiencing this but my active lifestyle has taken a huge backseat.  I am pretty much having all day morning sickness but thank goodness, no puking.  I just feel like I have the worst hang over ever all day till about 4 and then all the sudden it passes and I am starving.  I am tired all day, the worst in the morning. I have never been a morning person but this is way worse.  I have gotten in the habit of getting my morning sickness/motion bands on as soon as I wake up and I do think they are helping.  I have not felt like working out at 5:30 am at all.  I am going to try again next week but I am not optimistic.  Getting up, shoving food in my mouth and then working out just doesn't sound like a good time.  I would rather sleep off the foggy haze that I seem to wake up in.  Plus, even though I don't puke, I do gag a lot and i like doing that in private, not in front of a group class:)  Running has been non existant too.  I am out of breath all the time for some weird reason and have no stamina.  I started doing the couch to 5 K program with tony before we left for vacation and I was struggling to do 1 minute of running.  YIKES!  To go from 6 miles 5 times a week to struggling with 1 minute is very weird to me.  I worked so hard to build up to that and to see it all go away is sad.  Everyone says in the second trimester I will feel better so I am hoping they are right.  I had this fleeting vision of hardly any weight gain and being fit and trim and those visions are leaving very quickly.

So how does this all affect baby-D?  Well, I haven't made it to three of our practices thanks to feeling like crap and we have a show next weekend and then two in december.  I am trying to go out to the farm and get little short practices in but I can tell he is really getting rusty without classes.  Of course we won't have class anymore since lori is moving to KC so i need to get use to this but am having major motivation issues to make it to practice!  The days of course are getting darker earlier and it is dark when I get up so need to go to practices at the lighted field.  Also bummed because lots of great seminars like stuart mah and ann braue are coming up but all around the time I will be giving birth.  I also need to start banking days off for maternity leave.  I guess I don't get any extra time, have to use my sick leave and vacation.  I have 35 days banked in my sick leave so hoping I don't have to use any of that until then.  I have this horrible visions of being bed ridden and not being able to work or do agility.  I had tony run deuce some yesterday in open practice and I am sure he can run him no problem.  He is use to running a fast dog and as long as he holds his contacts, I will be fine with him running him, especially when it comes closer to time for me to birth.  Baby-D seems to be taking it in stride, still his normal goofy lovable self.  May have to look into crating him and stella when I start getting bigger and more uncomfortable as they both lay on top of me when we sleep.  Hate to do that but I could see that arrangement being a problem for me getting good sleep.

Anyway, Just needed to sit down and get some stuff out.  Need to go clean the yard, have a beginner agility lesson to go teach.  Enough of me whining, I am sure our little family and lifestyle will adjust and be fine.  I am very scared, very excited and very determined to get my active life back as soon as this little alien settles down.