Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Definition of Awesome

Cedar at the trial last weekend, photo by Randy Gaines.

I love my dog <3

Monday, July 25, 2011

Trial Recap

Why is this (admittedly poorly taken) iPhone photo one of the best things I've ever seen?

It's because it marks the occasion of our first (non-FAST) Open Q!!!!! And on a really tricky Standard course, no less! We have struggled mightily with the weave poles since moving up from Novice back in March (or April?). In trials, Cedar has been popping out pretty consistently at the 10th pole. And, being a Border Collie, she pattern trains very easily, which is a concern when it's a "bad" pattern :-P. After a few trials with weave troubles, I have decided to significantly step up my proofing efforts.

This weekend was the Idaho Capital City Kennel Club's summer AKC trial. I've always wanted to run at this trial because it's close to home (well, my old home) and I have watched agility trials at this venue for years. This year, we finally got a chance to compete. Being in July, it was freakin' HOT, and the metal roof did not make things better. But all in all I had a blast. We ended up with 2/6 Q's, one in FAST and one in *(yay!) Open Standard. We had a lot of really nice runs that weren't Q's, with just small mistakes. Saturday we NQ'd both Standard and JWW because of the weaves. Yesterday, after spending some time after the trial proofing, we managed to get the weaves (all 12 :D) and Q in Standard. We would have had a JWW Q as well, but for an uncharacteristic back jump during an awkward moment on course. Oh well.

Overall, I was super happy with how Cedar ran for me this weekend, as well as my handling. I just felt like we both pretty much had our sh*t together and were working well as a team. There was a lot of good to be found in our runs from this past weekend, that's for sure! I am confident that once our weave pole issue is fixed, we'll be unstoppable!

Here's a video of our Open Std Q from yesterday:

Onward and upward!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


It's a birthday double header this week.... first for Cedar, and now for the blog itself :-P Today marks our one year "bloggerversary"-- can you believe it?

A few stats:

Total number of views: 11,478
Total number of followers: 54
We have been visited by people from the following countries: USA, Canada, Russia, UK, Malaysia, Germany, New Zealand, Ukraine, Slovenia, Australia, Argentina

I also just discovered (this morning, actually!) that we were selected as one of the Top 5 Agility blogs by!!! Wow!!! What an unexpected and amazing honor, especially considering how many awesome agility blogs are out there on the web.

Best Blog Badge

This has been a really fun project, and I can't wait to see where it takes me in the coming year. It has been a very positive influence in my life and helped me deal with a lot of crap that has happened over the past year.

I already asked this on the Cedes of Change Facebook page, but...

What is something you've done in the past year to change your life in a positive way?

Wordless Wednesday: Goooo USA!!!!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Happy Birthday, Cedar!!!

My Cedes is FOUR YEARS OLD today!!!!!! I can't believe it! I'm going to bake her a tuna cake this afternoon and have a little party with the other two dogs. Not that she doesn't already feel special enough :D

The day I brought her home at 8 wks:

Last weekend on the beach:

She is my best friend and the most beautiful dog in the world <3

Happy birthday, Cedar... may we have many more birthdays together.

I'm still working through editing all the beach photos... there are so many, I have to pace myself or I'd go insane :-P

Monday, July 11, 2011

Life's A Beach

We're baaaaack.... refreshed from vacation and with a new look :D

I have 800-something photos to edit, and will post more about the trip later this week. But, in short, it was AWESOME.

Here's a taste of just how much fun we had this weekend:

More later...

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Guess where we're headed?

Here's a hint:

That's right, we're headed to the beach! The Oregon coast, to be exact. I am SUPER excited!!!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Check it Out....

My good friend Aimee, who was one of the contest winners from my last giveaway, posted a review of the toy she received :) Check it out here!!!

If y'all can remember as far back as last September, I went out and took photos of Aimee and her gorgeous horse, Izzy. You can take a look at that post here. She's an awesome chick with some great dogs and a wonderful horse. Her blog is a great read, too... y'all should check it out :)

It's hilarious that my post about her and her post about me have basically the same title :D

Monday, July 4, 2011

We return... triumphant yet broken :-P

Cedar and I returned from our first solo trial trip last night. We attended the Mt. Bachelor Kennel Club AKC agility trials in Redmond, Oregon. The trial site was beautiful, I got to hang out with some of my agility friends from Boise, and I finally am starting to feel more confident in my handling ability. Cedar ran great, with the exception of the weave poles. Overall, I loved this trial and would totally come back next year.

Oh, and Cedar finished her Open FAST title with two second places in a big 20" class :D

Unfortunately, THIS happened on Friday:

Yeah, that's right...I sprained the hell out of my ankle. On the first day of a three day trial. Awesome. The judge thought I had broken it, but it turns out it's just sprained really badly. I was able to run on it without too much pain with the help of an ace bandage and then an ankle brace.

It definitely impacted my ability to run and get to where I needed to be to handle Cedar properly. In spite of that handicap, we did pretty well. Cedar seemed to sense that I couldn't run very fast, and she adjusted her usual style to accommodate me. She ran with more distance than usual, while still listening to me really well.

Oh, but it gets better! Yesterday (Sunday) was our debut in Excellent FAST. We had a really great run going until the last jump of the send. Cedar lost momentum (because I couldn't run as fast as usual, sigh) and started to come into me, I slowed down to try and get a redirect in, slipped, and fell down straight on my back. Thankfully it didn't twist my ankle or anything, but now I have a sore back and tailbone to go along with my bum foot. Christ. Other than that, it was a great run. And even with the fall, after finishing the run we were still 3 seconds under SCT ;)

Definitely not my most graceful weekend.

Other than her weave pole issues, Cedar ran well. I felt like we had a good connection in all but one run. Her contacts were good, she listened well, we were able to tackle some really tough sequences, and, of course, we both had fun. She lives for agility.

By the end of the weekend, she was pretty worn out, though <3

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