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Momentum is always the top choice

Friday Course with notes

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Seasons. Years ago Eileen asked me why I was placing Whisper. Her response to my answer was meaningful and so true. There are different seasons in our lives. And I ain’t talking Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter.

Another season in my life, Dr. Pinsinski tells me it will be a good year. My cataracts were technically ready for removal last year, but given the deductable and that Medicare covers the surgery, I’ve been waiting for my 65th birthday. However! Maybe I’ll have HDTV in my right eye before then. Surely removal of this pleomorphic adenoma will meet my deductable.

I woke up Wednesday night feeling sick to my stomach. Minutes later I couldn’t get warm. Flu? Nerves? My body letting me know to stay home Thursday? Thursday, my favorite day of the week! For once I listened. So glad I did! I spent hours – literally hours – on the phone trying to sort out my insurance. Ronda couldn’t schedule me with Dr. Song until my insurance was approved. Dr. Song and UCHealth are in-network. Nobody could figure out the problem. Possibly it had to do with system updates, so we agreed to wait until Friday morning to see if things updated to reflect my insurance coverage. Ronda was great. She told me how to reach her directly. She promised to remain with me until the issue was resolved.

Friday morning I went to class, knowing Ronda would leave a message. In the middle of Tricks class, the notification came through. I snuck out of class to listen to the message, hoping for a time and date. Nope! Still an issue! Sitting in my car I called her back, trying so hard not to cry. She switched my name from Debra to Debby to reflect the name on my card. She asked if I was the primary cardholder. She tried everything she knew, including talking with her supervisor. She promised me it would be resolved, as it was obviously an issue on their end. She’d call by the end of the day and update me. Class was over by the time we ended the phone call. When I saw Lori and Kathi, alone inside the building, the dam broke and I cried. And I swore. 🙂 Of course. 🙂 I want the damn thing out of my body!! Oh. No. I said the fucking thing, not the damn thing.

The call came mid-afternoon. 9am, March 14th. That’s the consult, not the surgery.

For the past few days my mind has been reeling. How much time off will this require? How soon can I have my eyes done? Can I schedule it all to be done before July 1st? How much time off? Many upsides to being self-employed, but if I don’t work there’s no income. Will I have to give up agility classes? Maybe keep one or two? What kind of position would that put Lori in? And on and on and on. In stress 5 goes to 7. Monkey mind. I’ve spent time in my Wings too, especially 6. Go to 8! Deb! Go to 8! Look at the facts, make a plan and get on with it.

Must be the Season of the Witch. Donovan’s song has been in my head. Gonna use it to make a little video of our runs Friday morning.



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Under The Big Top


Video and music are in the can, awaiting further editing. In time, in time, I’ll have a video commemorating the day and our accomplishments. I’ve watched agility for years at this venue. Heck! I remember when it was in that old arena on the south side of I-70. The first time I’d seen agility. Cannot remember the specifics of what happened with conformation over that weekend. It used to be a big, big show. Four days, usually four days of majors with an LACCC Specialty tossed in now and again. What I remember is the sheer joy the agility dogs and their owners…such a contrast to conformation. The venue has such history for me. Four long days of shows. Parking sucked and one time I had to *shuttle* back to facility after unloading my dogs. That may have been the day I sought out the AKC representative. I also remember the last time I watched Lhasa Apso judging…oh! Wait! I didn’t. I parked my arse in the agility building and met up with my conformation friends after judging.

Given my past history with the venue, I’ve hesitated to enter agility there. Plus. It’s a 3-ring trial. Three Ring Circus. I stopped by Thursday after class to drop off a few things and get a lay of the land. So glad I did.

My goals/objectives were challenging to me. Set up to be…challenging for me, not my dogs. Dogs don’t do goal setting. 🙂 Goals/objectives? Check!

I was totally out of my comfort zone. And learned it was ‘just another trial’.

Edie and I ran – and finished!! – Standard. Bonus? She took the teeter. 🙂 🙂 🙂

I’m really proud of how I handled all 3 runs. Here’s what Lori had to say:

“Your girls did really well and so did you. Really proud of you guys.”

Ken, the photographer often at trials, is usually set up by the Standard ring, so I have very photos taken by him. I’m a little disappointed that Edie looks so concerned. Even in the broad jump photo her tail isn’t over her back.

Click this link, or go to www.kengeephoto.photoreflect.com to see your photos from this trial.


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Cookie Scatter

Even though we were on Home Court Zopa was very distracted. As we walked out onto the course she noted the sheltie that had just finished and – as Lori would say – Zopa wanted to kick her ass. Not sure she’s actually do that, but she sure can act like that in certain situations. Given the break through from last May when Megan was here, I so wanted her see our progress. :::sigh::: Oh well.

Train the dog in front of you. Oh! Wait! There was no dog in front of me! When she finally chose to return to me, Megan told me to scatter cookies on the floor. Of course Zopa loved sniffing those out and I thought aha! I’m going to use that during classes when needed.

But. Lori is not so much about cookies directly on the ground: I’m still not a huge fan of the cookie scatter idea. I just don’t love encouraging them to sniff around on the floor. That’s why I like the snuffle mat. They get to do that seeking behavior idea but in a specific context. I liked Tracy’s ideas about tricks that keep the dog’s head up. Bark at you, jump up on your. etc.

I’m wondering if it’s possible to make a tiny snuffle mat…one that would fit in my pocket and I could toss as needed on course….

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I Won’t Hesitate

Several weeks ago Kelly shared a link to Straight No Chaser’s I’m Yours/Somewhere Over The Rainbow along with this note: hey, there is a beautiful mashup of I’m yours (mine and nate’s first dance) and Somewhere over the rainbow (father/daughter – mother/son) – the 2 songs that are arguably most meaningful in my life.  It’s a really fun listen.

It was the same morning she met me after Friday’s class for a special Boyd Only Sleepover. Boyd wanted to see Lori. 🙂 He showed Lori Dragon and she let him run Spree through a tunnel. I opened the link on my desktop after we arrived home. The music started and Boyd immediately went into dance mode. And danced the entire song. “Hey, nana do this!”

The song has been in my head since then. How apropos that last week’s post with that fun course full of opportunities for handling choices down the long fast line, stacking techniques, fusing the tandem and the lap was titled Hesitation?? Cues rhythm change!

Making a video with our many successful scores on the agility floor that morning has been the focus this past week. I Won’t Hesitate fell into place. Of  course, wouldn’t you know it…after yesterday’s front cross workshop with Megan Foster…I’m hesitating all the time…not giving my dogs the info when they need it. Oh well. Learning is Infinite and doesn’t negate the wonderful things happening in this video. Notes follow below video…

Goose…lateral push and send through the tunnel start…call over wrap to a blind cross…reverse spin to a rear cross…tandem lap fusion thingee.

Elliot…successful backside send…front cross and reverse spin.

Norma Jean…now part of the FFT Class Team…running (well, trotting rather) the longest sequences of her life…call over wrap to a blind cross…blind cross through the fast line.

Zopa… 🙂 …fast down the open line out of the tunnel to #2…call over wrap…blind cross through the fast line.

Tanner…fast down the open line out of the tunnel to #2…call over wrap with a blind cross…reverse wrap to rear cross…tandem lap fusion…tandem turn down fast line…and into the tunnel…12-pole weaves twice!!

Edie…reverse spin to wrap…a hop or three through weaves…hop out of weaves…call through wrap to reverse spin…reverse spin to forced front.

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