Thursday, September 29, 2011

Tell Me Thursday #11

Crooks and Crazies

What? Why yes, it is National Give Laura Chocolate Day. No, not really, but I've been trying to convince people for two weeks that it is. I guess you guys want to know what it is that I want to know this week, hunh? Allrighty then. Here we go:

1. What movie do you love but are too embarrassed to admit you love it?
2. Ann wants to know: How far do you drive/travel to attend trials, clinics, lessons? How far is too far?
3. What is your theme song (circa Ally McBeal)?
4. Laura S wants to know: If you had to choose a new dog activity, one that you had never done before, what would you choose?
5. What would your dog choose (or scribe, if you're Pippin)?

1. What movie do you love but are too embarrassed to admit you love it?

Ok, I secretly love the Ace Ventura movies. They're crude and disgusting, and I laugh like a lunatic every time I watch them. Even when I'm grossed out I still can't help but watch and laugh. Most of my friends know that I have a teenage boy type taste in comedies, but I rarely ever admit to loving me some Ace Ventura. Alllllllrighty then. Glad we talked about that.

2. Ann wants to know: How far do you drive/travel to attend trials, clinics, lessons? How far is too far?

Right now I'm pretty limited by my transportation. If I had a more reliable vehicle and more money I'd happily go 8-10 hours away. As it is now I have the AAA 200 mile towing thingie, so I go no more than 200 miles. :)

3. What is your theme song (circa Ally McBeal)?

I'm sure you're all wondering what the phooey I'm talking about. Last week we talked about theme songs on the trial field. Now I'm wondering about other theme songs - life situation theme songs. I actually have several theme songs, prepared for different situations.

a. When I'm wearing heels and walking my sexy walk I play "Mustang Sally" in my head. Oh yeah.

b. When I'm walking down the hall with my boss' tea cup in my hand I play the "Imperial Death March" in my head. You know, think Darth Vader.

c. Sometimes it's "Fat Bottomed Girls" for just random days. Yes. Really.

4. Laura S wants to know: If you had to choose a new dog activity, one that you had never done before, what would you choose?

Probably Dock Diving. I cannot bring myself to consider some of the more sedate ones and though I loves me some cougar dancing I don't care to do freestyle particularly. Well, maybe I could teach my dogs the "Running Man" and we could do our freestyle to some MC Hammer songs. I hear that Hammer pants are coming back in style. I think I still have mine somewhere.

5. What would your dog choose (or scribe, if you're Pippin)?

June would choose Flyball. But really... there's just no sanity in putting June in a situation that might involve barking. Nick and Linc would totally choose Dock Diving. I don't know about Pia yet - though she does love to tool around in a pond. Ginger? Sunbathing. Zippy? Snorkeling, apparently.

What? Sunbathing and Snorkeling are not dog sports? The heck you say.

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Friday, September 23, 2011

Friday's Flea in Your Ear

Friday's Flea in Your Ear (Fitness Tips):

- Today at every stoplight suck in your belly. Tighten up your abs and hold them until the light turns green. Don't forget to breathe. If you're not driving then try it when commercials come on TV. If you don't have TV... well... pick something.

- If you find yourself munchy hungry ravenous get in my belly later in the day take a look at your protein intake in the morning. Bump it up a little and see if your willpower doesn't take a serious boost!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Tell Me Thursday #10

Crooks and Crazies

I actually forgot that today was Thursday until just now. Today's TMT is somewhat of a Free Form Edition. What I mean is that I'm going to give us all a broad topic, and I'm being intentionally vague because I'd like for everyone to feel like they can interpret it and answer it in ANY way they choose.

That being said, do me a favor. When you come back to link up please link to your specific post. Then, six months from now, we'll have it for comparison right at our fingertips. More or less. You'll see why when you see the question/topic.

So. Today's TMT Question/Topic is:

Going forward over the next six months, what are your goals?

Goals. I gotz them. For my life in general over the next six months:

1. Get my Zumba instructor license, and start teaching.
2. Get my finances all in a place that makes me happy (or at least be moving in that direction)
3. Clean up the potty mouth (how does this keep coming up on my list???)
4. Lose 35 pounds
5. Change my work circumstances
6. Make lots of lanyards to sell
7. Farmsit more
8. Get a new CrazyMobile. I don't WANT to add this one to my list. *sigh*

For the dogs:

1. Get Linc running in Open, or at the least ready for it. I guess this would involve actually making some trials. And working my dogs more regularly.
2. See how Pia progresses, and start her when she's ready. I'll probably give her a go about once every month or so until she seems ready. This may or may not fall into the six month time frame
3. Get Nick some places where I can stretch his outruns some.
4. Try to know when it's time to do the right thing for Zippy. I don't want him to linger and suffer. I don't think that time is too far off, unfortunately.
5. Get my dogs all worked more regularly.

This isn't a goal specifically, but I've been tossing around the idea of writing a book. About chickens.

My overall general goal over the next six months is to put myself into a place where I'm doing more in my life than just existing. More than just surviving. I guess in this world and this economy there are probably a LOT of people that are just surviving. I know I'm not alone. But I'm over it. SO over it.

In six months we'll do this again - and compare to see where we are in accomplishing our goals. Goals are good. They keep us grounded and motivated!

Have a great weekend everyone!

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Friday, September 16, 2011

Lanyard Winner

Using a random drawing generator, cuz I didn't go to Zumba last night, we have a winner. Doniene won the drawing, and has the option of a lanyard or scarf. Doniene, I'll send you an email! Congratulations.

Completely coincidentally, Doniene has linked up every single week!

Pia Wild Wing says thank for playing!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Tell Me Thursday #9

Crooks and Crazies

It's that time again! Time to tell me what I want to know. I am actually this nosey in real life, though I don't grill my friends. They just don't know I'm this nosey because I just let them think they're telling me because they want to. It's my evil plan for world domination at work. muahahaha

This week I'd like to know:

1. If you're not at the 2011 Sheepdog finals this weekend what are you planning to do?
2. One item you NEVER walk onto the trial field (any trial field, or training class will suffice) without?
3. Katy wants to know if you have a pre-run ritual that you observe?
4. How old were you when you had your first real kiss?
5. Bonnie wants to know what you do for yard mud control during the winter?

1. If you're not at the 2011 Sheepdog finals this weekend what are you planning to do?

I was thinking about hosting a "finals party" at my house for all of us who can't afford to go. But then it occurred to me that if we can't afford to go then probably we can't all afford to drive to my house to feel sorry for ourselves. So instead I'm planning to watch pretty much every moment of it on streamed video. WOOT! I also plan to eat lots of PB&J sandwiches. I'm going to turn into a PB&J.

So don't be calling me unless either a. the world is ending or b. you have amazing commentary cuz you're watching the streaming too.

Or maybe c. you have really good gossip that can't wait. Or if something is really wrong. And don't be coming over here unless you bring food. And diet dews.

I'm mostly kidding about not calling me. I'm not even kidding about bringing food if you show up on my doorstep though.

2. One item you NEVER walk onto the trial field (any trial field, or training class will suffice) without?

Sunglasses. I never ever walk onto the trial field, training field, or out into a pasture without sunglasses. The downside is that often I like to hang them on my shirt, which often tangles them up with my whistle/lanyard, and then I have to stand there and detangle. You'd think I'd learn my lesson.

3. Katy wants to know if you have a pre-run ritual that you observe?

I go to the porta-john. Repeatedly. Yes, really. Even if I don't need to go I think I need to go. Over and over. I also stand there and try to look like I'm cool and composed but inside... porta-john baby. I used to try to envision our runs but usually I got too creative and thought about train wrecks. I found that to be rather counter productive. So now I just sort of wander around and try to breathe and not throw up.

Oh, and I don't eat before a run. Even if I don't run until 5pm.

When I walk onto the field with my dog I play the theme song from the first Matrix movie in my head.

4. How old were you when you had your first real kiss?

Stop reading Mom.

12. It was gross. I get all ewwww just thinking about it. I'd rather never kiss again the rest of my life than have to endure THAT again. Oh wait! I'm already well on my way with the "never again" thing, eh? Yeah, no magic there.

5. Bonnie wants to know what you do for yard mud control during the winter?

I pretty much just hope for the best. I leave the yard alone but if it's wet out I line the kitchen floor (my back door is the kitchen door) with towels. If it's really, REALLY bad nasty out I let dogs in one at a time and towel off feet. Yes, that's a lot of feet. But hey... I have white carpet. Don't judge me. The white carpet came about when I had only one dog.

I'm thinking about throwing down some straw this year. I've tried mulch in other areas but for some reason my dogs just want to eat mulch. Weirdos.

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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Random Blather

Oh yes, it's time for another random blather post.

I got a new cell phone Friday two weeks ago. It randomly turns itself off when I try to view my own freaking blog with it. My own blog hates me. Or the phone hates me. Maybe both. This annoys me. It also begins to randomly flash the screen light on every 15 minutes beginning sometime around 4am. This also annoys me (um... hello... and it wakes me up). I'm going to have to go to the Verizon store tonight to take it back.


And, no, I don't recognize the ring tones on this phone as "rings" any more than I did the other one. I also don't lose it any less. However, it does have a nice little guard so that when I drop it (which I haven't yet) it won't damage it as much. Small favors.

I bought the unlimited ticket so that I could stream the 2011 National Sheepdog Finals to my leetle heart's content. Last year I could barely drag myself away from the screen. I cannot wait to start watching! If you want to watch too, take a look at the links in my post from yesterday. I just can't help it. In case you were wondering, buying the unlimited ticket is pretty much two weeks of very conservative grocery shopping. I will likely lose weight the next two weeks. Which, isn't that really the point? Sortof?

PBJ... oh PBJ... wherefor art thou, PBJ? In my belly you say? Oh my love, PBJ.

A Zumba instructor class has opened about 30 minutes from my house in November. I'm signing up tonight! Well, I will be if I ever get out of the phone store.

Oh yeah, I'll be teaching Cougar Dancing in NO time! Lookout world.

While farm-sitting for Julio little miss Pia turned on. I didn't get good video, but it was good! She went from bopping along behind me to WOOT SHEEP! in 0.2 seconds. Ok, more like thirty seconds.

I know I owe new Pia pictures. Soon, I promise! She has a few longish hairs near the withers, and off of her little butt cheeks but otherwise she's still downright slick. All but her floofy ears.

I'm thinking I might occasionally post some lanyards here, and if anyone wants to buy them they can. No pressure. Seriously.

I also promise to do the drawing tomorrow night. I live by myself and they don't take kindly to personal crap at work, so I've not had anyone to help. I'll get my sister (please!) to help me at Zumba.

I love ice cream cake.

Being lactose intolerant sucks.

This does not stop me from eating ice cream cake.

Or bacon cheese fries.

That is all.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

2011 National Sheepdog Finals

The 2011 National Sheepdog Finals are upon us. I'd like to give a special shout out to my real life buddies, and to my blogger friends who are running there. Best of luck - I know you'll all rock it!

Last year I watched the Finals streamed live - and this year they're doing it again (though somewhat differently).

For information on streaming video watch this Instructional Video.

Click here to pre-order your DVD.

To register to view the webcast please click HERE.

Since I'm in a linking kind of mood, here are a few more for you:

Sheepdog News
Finals Blog

Lastly, per Heather via the BC Boards please also note:

1. DVDs are ten percent off up until the end of the Finals on September 18. After that, they can be ordered through early November. Once the ordering deadline has passed, they won't be available again unless they show up on Ebay. So if you think you might want one, buy one! (I've gotten a lot of emails over the past year from people who really want to buy the 2010 DVDs, and are sorry and surprised to learn that they can't.)

2. If you've purchased an unlimited web cast ticket, you'll be offered a further discount on your DVD. So if you`ve bought such a ticket and want a DVD, do NOT order now. You'll be sent an email after the web cast with a link for your discounted price.

Best of luck to all - wish I could be there!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Tell Me Thursday #8

Crooks and Crazies

Guess what? We hit 20 people linked up last week. I'll be doing a drawing over the weekend and will contact the winner. I think more people have been playing than have been linking up, so as per usual don't forget to link to my blog in your post, and then come back here to link back to YOUR post.

This week's questions (my apologies - I'm not so much into digging deep this week. I promise to get back to more thought provoking subjects next week):

1. What is the biggest thing that grossed you out over the past week?
2. What do you feed your dogs?
3. If you could move anywhere where would you live?
4. What is the funniest thought that occurred to you (or thing that happened to you) this week?
5. If you couldn't have your breed of choice what would be next on your list?

I'll have to come back and answer as I have time today. We had a death in the family over the weekend and with evertything that's been going on time is sort of sparse at the moment. But you guys should stay tuned... there will probably be a chicken story in here somewhere.

My answers (editing to add):

1. What is the biggest thing that grossed you out over the past week?

Well... I farm-sat for Julie over the long weekend. I think pretty much by now my feather-phobia is pretty well known, but in case you don't know... I'm skeered of chickens. Anyway, there were two chickens sitting in nest-boxes when I went into the chicken house (shudder) to collect eggs on Sunday. I needed to get the eggs from under them, which meant I was going to need to put my hand under them. I took a stick in there thinking I could just poke the chicken with the stick and while she was distracted I could steal the eggs.

This sort of worked. The first chicken pecked the stick (I screamed like a little girl every time she pecked the stick) and stood up. But she didn't come out. So after she stood I walked out of the chicken house.. and she jumped down to get some chicken feed.

SCORE! I jumped in and collected her eggs. Ok, more like walked carefully around the throng of chickens at my feet, but whatever.

The second chicken was NOT moving. She pecked and pecked and I screamed and screamed. FINALLY I just stuck my hand in there. She pecked the stick and she pecked me, and I chanted "Oh god oh god oh god" and got the eggs out. Thinking I might have missed one I put my hand back in there. This leads me to my grossest thing of the week (and it's not what you think):

I touched her legs. I literally almost threw up on the spot. Chicken legs are not cuddly. They're scaley and... just... ew. Gross. I don't know how I ever thought I could actually catch and kill a chicken when just feeling their feet makes me want to hurl.

Second grossest thing was that I kept rapping my head on their perches in the chicken house. I now probably have chicken disease in my forehead.

Oh, and Sandy? Sandy stood there and watched. I'm sure we all wish she had videoed.

2. What do you feed your dogs?

At the moment Diamond Naturals. I rotate around, and I like to I try to get them onto something that is NOT a Diamond product. But really it's the best bang for the buck I've found. Sometimes I add in some canned food, cottage cheese, sardines, eggs, mackeral, ground lamb, or whatever. But I'm careful with the add ins these days as I often work long hours and try to avoid potty problems. When money was better and before P&G bought out Natura I rotated with Healthwise or Innova Adult when I could.

3. If you could move anywhere where would you live?

Ireland. Or Scotland. Or Wales. They call to me. I still have family in Scotland, and I'd move there if I could. I'd have myself a lovely little cottage and sheep. And an old cast iron claw foot bathtub.

4. What is the funniest thought that occurred to you (or thing that happened to you) this week?

I'm not feeling the funny much at the moment so until I can think of something I want to go with gross again. When I stepped outside this morning the entire neighborhood reeked of human vomit. I literally almost gagged. It was SO strong that I went out in my PJs and walked the perimeter of my fence to make sure nobody had barfed on my fence. I never could find the source of the smell, and when I went back out an hour later the smell was gone. But it was NASTY.

Editing to add that Ginger has now supplied me with my funniest thing. This is the face she makes when I go to open her mouth to pop a benadryl in there. I KNOW it looks like I'm doing that to her but I'm not. Earlier she started doing it before I even touched her.

Yes, you fans of TurdiTude may thank me now.

5. If you couldn't have your breed of choice what would be next on your list?

Why, a Papillon of course! Actually, probabably about 15 Papillons. I'd be a pap hoarder. I'd be a little old lady with tiny dogs stuffed in my dresser drawers. For reals. If I couldn't have a Pap I might want a really big galoof of a dog. A fluffy one. One that doesn't drool much though, cuz I'm not a big fan of drool. OH! Wait! Maybe I'd have one of those dogs with the dreadlocks. They rock, and you can wear them like a hairpiece like the dude in that commercial does.

And when it's time to bring the sheep in I'll send my Papillon out to get them.

I'm totally holding out for the paps stuffed in my dresser drawers.

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Thursday, September 1, 2011

Tell Me Thursday #7

Crooks and Crazies

Yes, indeedy, it is time for another Tell Me Thursday! If you would, please link back to my blog in your post, and don't forget to add the button too (code at the bottom). Come back here to link back to your post. For those interested in being entered in my lanyard/scarf drawing when we hit 20, I won't know who you are if you don't come link up!

Anyway, I can't believe we've hit week #7. Honestly I wasn't even sure we'd make it to week two, but you guys have all been rock stars. I'm running around like a crazy person this week, and I'll try to stop by everyone's blog but may or may not have time to comment. Today's questions:

1. What five things can't you live without?
2. How do you transport your dogs? This question suggested by several peeps, including Mara.
3. What role does obedience play in your training or running of your dog(s)?
4. At what point do you start putting commands on your dogs?
5. Do you talk to strangers in elevators? Question posted by Laura #1

1. What five things can't you live without?

Lip goo
Ankle socks
Good Coffee. Oh heck, any coffee as long as I get some.
My dogs

2. How do you transport your dogs?

I drive what I refer to as the CrazyMobile. It is a '95 Ford Aerostar with nothing but crates in the back. I drive it like I stole it. It has 240,000 miles on it, and usually it just rattles a little louder when I step on the gas. My friends think I drive Miss Daisy because I'm skeered, but mostly I'm just afraid I might leave my transmission on the highway somewhere if I go any faster. When I bought it (for $300) I threw the seats away and started packing crates in. I am badazz doggie soccer mom rebel without a cause. I haz sliding door without a handle cuz I pulled it off. You guys are in AWE of the CrazyMobile. Blazing speed of power. Rawr. I pwned a guy in a Mustang week before last.

I roxxors the minivan.

3. What role does obedience play in your training or running of your dog(s)?

Seriously? Not all that much. I mean, yeah, I expect them to by and large come when I call, lie down when I tell them to, and I expect them to flank the direction I tell them to go.

But really? For us it's SO much more fluid than that. If I'm dead wrong I also expect them to ignore me and do the right thing. If I lie them down and the situation changes and their intervention is needed I expect them to get up and fix things. But if I lie them down and tell them to stay there I expect them to stay there. You know, unless they need to fix something. I can't tell you how many times I've insisted my dogs do something to find out they were resisting because I was wrong. I guess I could say that obedience is important because when I insist they do what I'm insisting. However, I've also learned to trust at least Nick's judgement sometimes and if he's resisting often I will leave him be. He's usually right.

I'm always baffled at their amazing ability to understand this. The non border collies (Ginger and Zippy) don't get this grey area stuff. Or maybe they're just too ornery to care. But it always amazes me to see that stockdogs seem to just "get it".

Oh, and I totally expect them to do their stupid tricks on command. Most of my dogs know a few stupid tricks. I say few because *I* can only come up with a few before I'm over it.

4. At what point do you start putting commands on your dogs?

Um... maybe about two days before their first trial? I pretty much start using a "lie down" command when we start working, and a that'll do, but I don't actually start putting actual flank commands on for a while (though I may use them somewhat conversationally in the beginning). I eventually get around to it when I realize I'm about to walk to the post at a trial and my ragamuffin dogs don't have flank commands. I think this sort of ties into the natural dog thing. Linc is not as much of a natural dog, so he had flank commands pretty early. Not so much on the lie down. Oh wait, he still doesn't have much of a stop!

I didn't have a solid flank command in sight on Nick at his first trial. It was Novice-Novice, and yea though we sucked through the valley of the shadow of the gates, we won. I also walked a straight line... to the middle of nowhere near the panels. He took every flank command I didn't give him. But I digress.

Early on I like to let the dog work, and learn from the sheep. When everything else falls away I want the overall concept to be "go get the sheep and bring them to me". So we wear, and I'm quiet. Impossible to imagine, I know. Eventually though I *do* get around to putting flank commands on.

5. Do you talk to strangers in elevators?

Hello? Have you guys met me? I think the better question for me would be more like, "Laura Reloaded, when do you ever NOT talk? Have you ever NOT talked to a person anywhere that you've been?" Yes, I talk to people in elevators. I find that their discomfort makes a tiny little giggle blossom up inside of me. I am easily amused.

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