Thursday, March 31, 2011

Fatigued Friday

I'm really stressed right now.

That word isn't even in Moss's vocabulary.

He's such a happy dog with a palpable zest for life that brightens even the darkest of my days. I'm so thankful for him. :)

An old pic, but a good one:

Yeah, I know it's cheap to recycle photos on a blog. Unfortunately I don't have any new ones to post right now. But...I'm hoping to drag my camera out of its premature retirement and get some new photos tomorrow.

Aaaandddd... not to leave Cedar out, here's a photo of her at the trial a few weekends ago, taken by Randy Gaines:

Monday, March 21, 2011

Agility trial results!

I think this picture says it all :D

This past weekend was my local kennel club's spring agility trial. I entered Cedar in all eight runs available, 3 Standard, 3 Jumpers, and 2 FAST classes, in Novice A, of course :)

Coming into the trial, Cedar needed one leg to finish her NA and NF titles, and two legs to finish her NAJ. On Friday, Cedar qualified in all three runs, finishing both her NA and NF titles with Q/1st places, and also got her second NAJ leg with a Q/1st place. I moved up to Open Standard and FAST for the rest of the weekend, and waited to see what would happen in jumpers. I had my fingers crossed that we could finish that title this weekend, too... but didn't know if we could do it.

On Saturday, jumpers was first. Cedar had two knocked bars, so we didn't get that last qualifying leg for our NAJ. I was pretty disappointed, but still had two runs to go. FAST was next, and it was our Open debut! Cedar rocked the send bonus (one that most teams had a really hard time with), and even though we were over time because I wasted a long time on the weaves, we still qualified, having almost 20 more points than the minimum needed. Open Standard was last. We NQ'd, but had some great moments.

Sunday was the last day of the trial. Standard was first. We NQ'd because she couldn't quite get the 12 weave poles, but everything else was damned near perfect. I was so proud of her. Jumpers, of course, was last! After Saturday's disappointment, the pressure was a little bit higher. I really wanted that Q to finish our Novice Jumpers title. I led out, and Cedar held her start line stay like a rock. On my release, she took off like a rocket, and we zoomed around the course. She listened so well it was like she was reading my mind, seriously. With the exception of one little bobble at the weaves, it was a perfect run. We qualified and got first place to finish our NAJ title!!!! What a great way to end an already fantastic weekend.

At this trial (our third trial ever, and only our second AKC trial), Cedar and I qualified in 5 out of 8 runs and finished three titles. Every Q we earned was also a clean run. She ran the best she ever has, and I am so proud of her.

Here are a few videos, I hope y'all can see them...

Our Novice Standard title run-- the best run we've had so far in competition:

Our Novice FAST title run:

Our Novice Jumpers title run:

Aaaannnd.... a "greatest hits" compilation of some of my favorite moments from the trial:

I <3 my girl dog :)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Mid-week Slump

I'm tired.

Like, literally almost unable to function. I've never felt so brain dead and profoundly exhausted in my entire life. This thesis thing is a lot tougher than I thought it would be! Unfortunately, it looks like I won't make the defense deadline for spring graduation. I've made peace with that fact... primarily because my defense date will only really be delayed a month. I'm aiming to defend in April sometime. So, even though my diploma will technically say "Summer 2011," I will still be done with my degree this spring. Not ideal, but it's the best option for me right now.

Did I mention that I also managed to mess my back up somehow? It's starting to feel better, but jeez. When it rains, it pours I guess.

Unfortunately, because of my busy writing schedule, the dogs have been a bit neglected lately. I don't have much time or energy for them right now. I do agility on the weekends, and take them for walks/to the park to play fetch. That's about it for now. It's been a real bummer, since I really enjoy being more active with them. I guess that'll have to wait until May.

This weekend, I have another agility trial with Cedar. It will be our second AKC trial, third trial ever. I am really excited; I think we're pretty prepared and I am crossing my fingers that we can finish at least one title this weekend. Right now, Cedar has 2/3 legs on her NA and NF, and 1/3 legs on her NAJ title. Exciting stuff! Cedar's such a blast to run, too... I can't wait to see what new "challenges" we encounter this weekend :-P

All I want to do lately, all I think and dream about, is getting out into nature. I need to clear my head. I want to do lots of hiking, camping, and gallivanting in the woods after I graduate. I want to sit and stare at the ocean for awhile. Find myself again from within the cluttered office that is my brainspace right now. Just pack up, grab the pups and get the hell outta dodge.

Yesterday, I took the dogs for a walk around the neighborhood. We ended up being out for over an hour, and walked a few miles. It was so fun and relaxing. The dogs and I both felt great afterwards.

Logger Creek, which winds through my neighborhood:

The three of us could have walked and explored all day.

I don't really have any great wisdom to impart (hahaha) to end this post, so... uhm... go hug your dogs. It's been proven that petting an animal releases endorphins and helps to relieve stress. Have a great day :)

Monday, March 7, 2011

Quote of the Day

I ran across this quote on a random blog I was reading today. Definitely some food for thought:

“You might think, for instance, that the life you have is not at all the life you had in mind and so it doesn’t constitute your real life at all. Your real life is the life you pine for, the life you’re planning or the life you’ve already lost, the life fulfilled by the person, place, [etc], of your dreams. This is the life we are most devoted to: the life we don’t have.”

That's the cool thing about dogs. They're pretty good at living in the now.

Summer/graduation cannot come soon enough.

I'm so exhausted.
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