Saturday, August 30, 2008

Dog Blog

I'm reminded that this blog is supposed to be about the dogs too yet I haven't posted anything about them in a while! Max and Stanley are doing well - they just haven't had anything exciting lately. Walks twice a day, agility class each week, etc. Nothing that's even made me drag the camera out since getting back from Canada.

But here, one of my classmates sent me a link to a video she took of Stanley a couple months ago when he was learning to jump. He's very enthusiastic!

Aaaaaaaaand....we're off!

I have my first official workout from my brand-new coach Liz tomorrow - woohoo! I can't wait to start. I'm itching to do that easy run, to check something off the list, to officially BEGIN. Next week I get to do tests in each sport to figure out where I'm at and the appropriate zones for my training.

I'm a bit sleepy today. The neighbors behind us, once again, decided to party late into the night. Why can't they party like normal people? Drink a lot, sprint through the neighbhorhood naked and just pass out, would you? No, instead, they leave their back door (which faces our bedroom) wide open and partake of some sort of game that requires everyone to SCREAM and YELL at the top of their lungs. Over and over, till long past midnight. Should I have knocked on their door at 5:30 this morning to see if they wanted to join us for a bike ride?

Funny enough, Liz posted last night about the drinking taking place in her neighborhood. I guess there really is no escape.

Thursday, August 28, 2008


I haven't had much to report this week, just slogging along with work and running while eagerly anticipating a 3-day weekend. But now, exciting news!

*Furby is fine and back home with his owners - thanks to those who asked about him!

*I took my first yoga class last night and it was fun. Probably just the relaxation I need.

*I'm going to have a coach starting in September! I finally bit the bullet and emailed the person I've really wanted to work with! I can't wait to have some real personalized guidance instead of a canned plan for once.

*And now for some heartwarming news that will have you all popping by for a visit. There will be a new addition to our family. I am very excited to report that this gorgeous thing is moving in, probably sometime late next week. OMG I can't wait to take her for a spin! I am told that I need to give her a proper name - any suggestions?

Monday, August 25, 2008

Red hot brick

We made it out yesterday for the hilly 39 miles in Cupertino/Saratoga/Los Altos and then I ran 9 miles. It was a bit warmer than I had expected and I had to ration my water along the way. I really thought I might be nearing heat stroke towards the end but I made it in OK.

The guys didn't quite get to do their lunch thing the way they intended though. After I left to run, there was an incident that required one of Nigel's dogs to be rushed to the ER vet. Jeff tried to drive my route looking for me (and drove right past me without seeing me) and instead had to wait for me at the restaurant until I arrived. Please think good thoughts for Furby, who is still hospitalized as of the last update I received.

This is a lighter rest week, which I am grateful for as my body is a bit worn down from going hard yesterday. I need to build my swimming distance up a bit more and keep working on all strokes as pre-masters starts in 2 weeks!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

It's just a big crate, Stanley

Our new tent is so pretty and spacious and - most important for backpackers - light. This frees up more weight in Jeff's pack to carry more things for me!

We slept in the yard last night and while the tent passed all its tests, we're groggy and sleep-deprived today. The night went something like this...
  • 9:30pm Molly heads to the tent to read her latest issue of Time magazine (Barack Obama on the cover!) while Jeff watches TV.
  • 9:32pm Molly goes back inside to get a sweatshirt and a blanket. It's cold out there.
  • 9:50pm Molly calls it quits and goes to sleep.
  • 10:00pm Jeff comes to bed in the tent, waking Molly up.
  • 10:02pm Max follows Jeff out and wants to see the insides of the new tent. Cujo, in the meantime, is snoozing in the grass nearby and Stanley is firmly esconsed indoors because whatthehellisthatbigbluethinggrowinginmyyardandwhyareyoupeopleinsideit!!!!
  • 10:05pm Something goes boom in the night and Max wants out of the tent in a hurry. Hole in tent wall is narrowly avoided as Jeff is quick to unzip the door. Max retreats indoors to safety.
  • 11:00pm Motorcycles race down the street.
  • 11:30pm Molly goes in the house to use restroom. Wakes Jeff up getting back in the tent.
  • 12:00am Molly wakes up to hear loud scuffling noises and hollers at Max, who is digging a hole next to the deck. Max wants back in the tent and Jeff lets him in. Then he realizes Max has brought a pile of dirt into his sleeping bag. Max is already fast asleep before Jeff is done sweeping mud out of his bed.
  • 1:00am Jeff yells at Cujo to stop chewing on himself (this is a very loud noise with a St Bernard) and falls back asleep.
  • 1:01am Molly yells at Cujo to stop licking himself.
  • 2:30am Jeff goes in the house to use restroom. Wakes Molly up while leaving, so she runs in to go again. Molly and Max beat Jeff back to the tent, where Max sets up camp in Jeff's sleeping bag and is reluctant to give up room for its rightful occupant.
  • 3:00am A branch crashes to the ground in the yard behind us.
  • 3:30am Jeff yells at Cujo to stop chewing on himself and falls back asleep.
  • 3:32am Molly yells at Cujo to stop licking himself and wakes Jeff up.
  • 3:35am Jeff yells at Cujo to stop licking himself.
  • 4:00am We finally fall into deep sleep.
  • 6:00 Alarm goes off. Stanley wanders out to say hello and immediately wants to be let in the tent and ohwowthisissocoolinhereguysgoodmorningkisskisslicklickwhatchadoing??!!!
And another day begins in the loony bin.
In other news, Stan and I went to the Norcal Golden Retriever Club's obedience fun match this morning. If we're hoping to enter competition at the beardie national in 2 months, we need more ring practice and this was perfect for it. We did a run through in the obedience ring and one in the rally ring. In an effort to get me laughing, the obedience judge said something like "Pretend you're representing the US in the Olympics!" and all I could think was, well then Uncle Sam is SCREWED on this one. Anyway, Stan actually did quite well and we had some nice practice runs and found more things to work on. I do have to remember he's still a teenager and it's enough that he's enjoying himself at this age.
Jeff wants to go out for a nice Italian dinner tonight so my carbo-loading-focused brain is waltzing around dreaming of bruschetta and ravioli and gelato. I'll have to bike fast tomorrow to make up for it!

Friday, August 22, 2008

VP Mania

I can't help myself. The media frenzy has sucked me in. I signed up for the text message announcement of Barack's VP candidate. SO LET'S HAVE IT ALREADY!!!!

Jeff and I met at lunch to shop at REI. We bought a new tent (technically two new tents - one for both of us backpacking together and one for Jeff when he goes with the guys). Doesn't that mean we HAVE to give it a test run and sleep in the yard tonight? I also got some running shorts on sale and trail running shoes. I guess this means I need to get some trail runs in before the 21K next month. I also bought a ton of Stinger honey gels - I used these for the first time at Vineman and LOVED them. Perfect natural energy boost!

Stanley and I are doing an obedience fun match tomorrow and then Sunday is my long bike/run brick. I hope Jeff and Nigel save some beer for me and don't drink Hooters out of all the Fat Tire before I get there.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Vineman official photos, straight from my mailbox!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Monday Night Ramblings

I keep thinking I should post but I don't have much to report, so this entry will just feature a smattering of updates.

* Jeff took me out for a nice hilly 36-mile ride on Saturday. He had not pre-ridden all of the course so it was to discover a few steep uphills that had me standing up in the saddle in my lowest gears and still worrying I would run out of leg and fall over.

* Stanley and I went to the Mensona KC show in Santa Rosa on Sunday. We muddled our way through the rally ring again and came out with a qualifying leg and a 4th place! Then we watched Stan's sister Bea go Winners Bitch and Best Opposite for another point. She's got major coat, even next to Stan, and is looking lovely!

* I ran 8 miles this morning. On the way home, with 1 mile to go, I stopped at the gym and lifted weights for 20 minutes.

* I'm still swimming, biking and running, though I don't have anything but sprint tris left for the year. I do have a half-marathon and a 21K trail race hence the focus on quality long runs for the next few months.

* This weekend Stanley and I are doing an obedience/rally fun match on Saturday where we'll have plenty of opportunities to fine-tune our ring performance. And then on Sunday...

* I have convinced Jeff and Nigel to help me with my training. They will join me on the same hilly 36-mile ride I did last weekend. And then they'll ditch me at Nigel's house and go to lunch. I will have to run the 9 miles to meet up with them so that I can get a ride home. Thanks, guys! I know it's hell for you two to go drinking at Hooters together!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

I love this dog!

I just got some very nice Stanley photos from the shows.

Look at how much his coat has grown since April!

Two Left Feet

Lest anyone out there in bloggerland think I am all graceful and smooth, here's a post to counter that notion!

I have a confession to make: I am a klutz. My body is a constant patchwork of bruises and scrapes. I can't even remember how I got half of them - Jeff is constantly making fun of me for asking, "What did I DO to get THAT?"

Just a quick summary of the current injuries I actually remember getting:
*I jammed my pinky finger getting something out of the car in Anacortes - TWO AND A HALF WEEKS AGO - and the joint is still swollen and sore.
*I've got bruise stripes up both legs from the beardie girls greeting me in the mornings and scratching when they jumped.
*I have a healing knee scrape from when I fell off my bike in Canada. Oh? I forgot to tell that story? That's because not that exciting. While trying not to slip in wet gravel on the roadside while turning into Yvonne's subdivision, I failed to gear down for the BIG HILL that leads to her house. I simply stopped moving and tipped over. At which point I couldn't get my foot unclipped so I just sat there with my bike on top of me trying to figure out what to do. In the middle of the road.
*I scraped/cut my arm on Jeff's workbench while trying to load laundry right after I got home from the roadtrip. It's bruising nicely as well.
*I stubbed my toe the following morning. And it still hurts.
*I hit my head on a cabinet in our garage yesterday morning.
*And then I closed a door on my finger last night.

Despite all evidence to the contrary (i.e. my race times), I might actually be at my most graceful while swimming, biking and running!

In other news, I am signing up for another Intro to Masters swim session in the hopes of getting on track to start masters swims this fall. And I signed up for an introductory yoga series because my flexibility is pretty weak.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Back in Business

We're home and life is slowly returning to normal. Cujo wasn't so excited about our arrival yesterday, but Jeff more than made up for it with enthusiasm :) Stanley is back to sleeping in his bathtub, Max is at my feet as always, and I'm just about caught up on mail and emails.

After Jeff left for the office today, I went to the pool for a short swim - I think following the 100 pushup training plan is actually helping increase my swim power (it's got nowhere to go but up!). And then I went to the gym to run (treadmill) hills and lift weights. I think tomorrow I will get my legs revved up a bit by going to spin class!

Now if only my pro photos from Vineman would arrive in the mail already...I want to share them!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Homeward Bound

Just a quick mobile message from the road (literally I am sitting here in the ferry line waiting to board).

Stanley is a Canadian champion! He finished today and went Best of Winners as well. He leaves with 2 BOBs, 2 BOS and and 4 majors.

Now that Yvonne and I have cried our eyes out saying goodbye, we have to turn our attention to getting home. 1000 miles to go!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Back on the Training Wagon

Chris told me today she was going to swim around the Santa Cruz pier, bike 50-something miles and run 6. I am so jealous. I want to be training for something again!!! Yes, I know, Vineman was barely 3 weeks ago, but I'm ready for more!

I made it out for a 40-minute run today before the show. I'm hoping to bike into Victoria tomorrow morning, as we don't show until afternoon, and then follow that up with a short tempo run. Sunday will be a long run as we again don't show until afternoon.

Today Stanley went Reserve. Kendra, now a special, won Best of Breed over 3 specials, including one who is ranked very highly in the U.S.!!! She's on a roll now!

I did have a long conversation today with a photographer from the Victoria Times Colonist and he took many many pictures of us while I groomed Stanley for the ring. We will see when tomorrow's paper comes out but apparently I should expect to see us in there. To be honest we mostly talked about hockey, but I think I impressed him when I mentioned Barry Melrose taking over as coach of the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Back at the hotel, we've got a lot of this going on.

Thursday, August 7, 2008


Most important news of the day, Yvonne's Kendra was Best of Winners for the major to finish her championship!!!!! She is now Ch. Innis Platinum Plus.

Oh and Stanley was Winners Dog for another point! :)

We're off to Victoria!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

No exciting updates today

Stanley went Reserve, Kendra was Best Opposite Sex over the special but it was only 1 point and she needs a major to finish *sob*

Yvonne took me up Mount Washington to see the views. Now I really wish I'd biked it - the road looked like great (hellish) hilly fun!

We're busy getting organized and cleaning dogs and beginning to pack - after tomorrow's show we leave for Victoria!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Goofy monkey

It's a shame Stanley doesn't have fun in the show ring, isn't it? When did he get so TALL?

Monday Part Deux

Well, today's results certainly made reporting easy - just ditto to yesterday! Stanley was again Winners Dog, Best of Winners and Best of Breed over the special.

Waiting to go in the ring
In for Herding Group

And then as a great finish for the day I got to teach Harmony, Kendra and BaNANa how to jump for agility - the grrrls did GREAT!!!

Monday, August 4, 2008

A Very Good Day (enough photos for you, Lynn?)

First of all, I have to thank Yvonne for taking a bajillion amazing pictures, without which this blog wouldn't be very visual in reporting the news of our day!

The dogs were exhausted enough from the bounce to finally let me sleep a full night so we woke up refreshed and ready to tackle day 3 of the shows.

Stanley was in fine form and handled beautifully. He even carefully held his stack and managed to lean up and kiss the judge during his exam! In the end, Stanley was Winners Dog!

And then...

We went back into the ring (where I was really hoping Yvonne's gorgeous girl Kendra would take Best of Winners to finish her CH). Instead, Stanley went Best of Winners AND Best of Breed over a special (that is, a dog that is already a champion).

And then...

We went into the Herding Group ring, where I typically have no expectations. And made the cut to the final 5 dogs! Stan did not place in Group but to be pulled to the last 5 with only 4 placements to be given was quite an honor. We DID remember to get a photo taken with the judge and will see how they looked when we talk to the photographer tommorrow.

In the afternoon we went to Gary's hometown of Port Alberni on the west coast of the island. Talk about just amazing scenery the whole way!

Getting ready to go into the ring
No fault to be found with this weather and scenery - look at those snowy mountains!
Sweet Stanley face
Free stacking outside the ring
Smooching the judge mid-exam
Stan and Kendra go around the ring
In for herding group judging

The beardies5 posing in Port Alberni
Totem doggies

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Beardie Bounce

We're what? Having a beardie bounce today?
Harmony enjoyed the company
Duffy and Gabby were tired puppies after a morning of showing and an afternoon at the beach

It was a delightful night and all the dogs had a great time, even the "show" dogs that spent most of it locked up in the house together. I've been completely spoiled by wonderful cooking on this trip and Yvonne is going to be personally responsible for me going home 20 pounds heavier than I started.

And yes, Jeff and friends finished the century ride today. He described it as "brutal." Here they are at the top of the climb of Mt Shasta, with just a few downhill miles to go!

Another day, another show

Today Stanley was Winners Dog, Best of Winners and Best Opposite Sex for his first Canadian points and a major. Not too shabby for the shaggy boy.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

5 beardies in a stay - it's harder than you'd think

Kendra, Harmony, Max, Nan, and Stanley
Chauncey kids Max (6yo) and Kendra (2.5 yo)
Harmony is looking especially happy.
BaNANa (with brother Stan) is looking a LOT like her mother.
Winning is exhausting.

Working out the kinks

Day 1 of the shows is over. Stan showed beautifully (and took Reserve) and I couldn't be more proud. His sister Nan took Best of Breed!

Not many pictures right now...yesterday the adult dogs enjoyed a day of peace and quiet while the youngsters were at the groomer. Harmony was quite pleased with this.

The rain has stopped and we saw a flash of sunlight yesterday in Campbell River. This morning turned out to be a beautiful day at the show (and if I hadn't spent the afternoon napping I'd say the same thing about the rest of the day). If we can just get Stan to sleep through the night here without any middle-of-the-night potty or water breaks, I might feel human again! Was supposed to do a 30 minute fartlek run today but we had an very early start to the show and I was too tired afterwards. I am hoping to wake up early tomorrow and squeeze in a 6-miler before we have to leave.