Monday, December 11, 2006

When it rains . . .

Well, as they say, when it rains it pours. Poor, poor Farley has a rough, tough life. His tummy seems to be feeling better, thank goodness. So I decided to give him a bit of a trim. He hasn't had a haircut since before he got sick, so I wanted to tidy him up. I decided to scissor trim his ears, to get the mats and gunk out of them. I didn't want to shave his ears, as I wanted to preserve some hair. I planned to take the hair really short and close to the ear leather. At this point I'm assuming you've looked at the picture to the left, so you know my plan went awry (I have a wicked vocabulary!)
Anyhow, I accidentally cut his ear . . . pretty good. It bled like a stuck pig, I thought I was going to have to call the vet AGAIN. Farley was such a trooper - he yelped once and then just endured it. This dog is AMAZING!
My mom and I bought him a new sweater. Normally I don't keep the dogs dressed up, although they do wear seasonal outfits from time to time. But this sweater is made with really nice fleece, and it's been quite cold here. So we picked it up. I think he looks great in it, and he seems to enjoy wearing it. I think he looks like a little tuff guy!
Grace is doing well, although last time she bit Farley on the ear she got a "lecture" from him. Ooops! She keeps trying to nurse him back to health, and he keeps resisting her efforts. It's quite cute. She is a brave girl - we have huge snowdrifts around our yard and around the hot tub, and she jumps all over them like a mountain goat. It's too cute to watch!
Almost done with school stuff now . . . one more final and then I'm a free woman for a while. Yahoo!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006


Last night Farley came home, thank goodness. After spending two nights without him in the house, I was starting to get quite down about it all. Even though he's still resting a lot, the house is just more "right" with him in it.

In the end, the barium passed through his system (albeit slowly), and he didn't need surgery. The vet still doesn't know the reason for this illness - there are a few possibilities. It could have been a partial obstruction that is slowly moving through Farley's system. It could be a severe case of gastroenteritis. Or it could be the onset of Irritable Bowel Disease. We don't know for sure. I'm to monitor him for a while, to make sure the symptoms don't reappear. If they do, he gets admitted again for more bloodwork and exploratory surgery. I hope it doesn't come to that, because those kinds of things just never end well.

He was sure happy to be home last night! He was squeaking the heck out of his new toy (he stole it from the vet clinic waiting room before he got admitted - but I paid for it, don't worry) and his little tail was wagging a mile a minute. He's more subdued today, but I'm hoping that's just because he's stil recovering from being sick.

Grace is ecstatic to have her brother home . . . she's been harassing him non-stop since he walked through the door. He's not thrilled with it, but he tolerates her SO well. I'm crating her a bit to give him rest breaks, but she's been out trying to entice him to play too.

So the household is full again . . . let's hope it stays this way now!

Sunday, December 03, 2006

And so it goes

Well, I thought Farley was better. He certainly improved through the course of the week. He got Kaopectate for a few days, along with pumpkin in his food, and so his diarrhea seemed to go away. Anyhow, I wasn't really worried . . . disappointed about spending so much money to get no answers, but relieved that he had nothing wrong. Hah!

Friday I went out for a few hours to curl on my mom's team, and when I got home he'd pooped in the entry way. Now, this dog does NOT have accidents in the house, so I knew his tummy was still upset. Still, that in itself wasn't odd, given the week he'd had.

Saturday morning he woke me up with his shivering . . . really hard core shakes, as if he was wet and cold (he was neither). I took him outside, and he did his business. Not that long afterward, he threw up. Not bile . . . it was a bunch of liquid with some undigested food in it. Odd, since he hadn't eaten since the night before. After he threw up he was really upset, and hiding around the corner from me. It was absolutely heartbreaking, since I wasn't in the least bit angry (how could I be???).

So yesterday I took him to see the emergency vet (my regular vet is closed on weekends). We discussed a few things, and I found out that Farley is running a temperature. I didn't know that. So we opted to have him admitted (which is NOT a decision I make lightly), so he could get IV fluids and IV antibiotics. I felt he needed a quiet night for resting, and I knew he'd get looked after (the vet was on call, so there was somebody at the clinic through the night).

This morning they called to tell me they'd gone ahead and done barium x-rays. There are blockages in the stomach and the small intestine, but they're not complete blockages. The vet wants to re x-ray at 6:00pm and call me then. He was also going to try and get ahold of my regular vet, to get the test results from Thursday. Then we may opt to do surgery, depending on how things look and compare to previous test results.

So, keep my Farley-boy in your thoughts and prayers if you could. I'm awfully worried about him. And Gracie misses her big brother.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Never A Dull Moment

Yep, life is exciting around here. I can't imagine what it would be like any other way. I might get bored.

Friday night, before I left for Edmonton, Farley threw up on the bed. I have to admit that I didn't really think a lot of it, I just thought he'd eaten something. Well, he threw up several more times over the day, so I had my mom withhold food for 24 hours, to give his system a chance to rest. He seemed better on Sunday, so I tried not to worry. When I got home yesterday, he had thrown up again and also had diarrhea. So, off to the vet he went this morning (with my dad).

Several hundred dollars later (x-rays, barium x-rays, bloodwork and subQ fluids), it appears that there is nothing wrong with Farley that can be pinpointed. The vet sent us home with kaopectate and instructions to return if he doesn't improve. He has his medicine and is now resting. Definitely not as perky as normal, but hopefully on the road to recovery.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Winter Roads Part 2

So I'm back from my girls' weekend in Edmonton, and I'm happy to report that we had a fabulous time! But the winter roads were worse than I had initially feared. There was plenty of ice and snow, and the big truck drivers just make visibility even crappier. Driving down wasn't too bad, because we were all excited about the weekend and so we were chatting. Today was a different story - we were all mentally and physically exhausted from the shopping. But oh! the shopping!

All of us had successful money-spending weekends :) I spent less than I had planned, but I can't say that that's a bad thing! I did get the new black shoes I wanted, and I was also able to pick up the last few things on my holiday shopping list. It's nice to be done Christmas shopping before December has even arrived! The Pathfinder wasn't too full, so I guess we could have done more damage, but I think we were all done for this trip.

Anyhow, if anybody is contemplating travel on highway 63, I say STAY HOME! The roads just aren't worth braving right now, especially when you couple them with some reckless driving. I'm glad to be home!

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Winter Roads

So, I should be sleeping right now, but since I'm not driving tomorrow, it's not imperative. So I thought I'd post a quick note, because it'll be a few days before I can post again. I'm heading to Edmonton with a couple of friends from work, and I don't think I'll bring the laptop with me. I'd rather just have fun and not be tied to the computer. Shocking, I know. Hopefully I can survive the withdrawal symptoms!

I got my Finance midterm back, and am really pleased with my grade! Much better than I ever thought I'd do in a Finance course, so I'm pleased. Don't ask about the assignment grade - if I hadn't lost my motivation for school, the mark wouldn't have been so dismal. Oh well, I put much more work into the assignment we just handed it. Hopefully the grade reflects that.

Mother Nature is being cruel again - it's been snowing and blowing for a couple of days now. The city roads are brutal - very icy and of course the snowplows haven't been out yet. Not sure why they'd want to get out right away? It's more fun to watch people slide into the ditch for a day or two (NOT!). Anyhow, hopefully the highway isn't too bad . . . it should be better than the city roads. It'll be an adventure, anyhow.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Planning ahead

So a really good procrastinator plans ahead :) Instead of working on my paper this weekend, I am heading to the city (Edmonton) with a couple of girlfriends from work. Very last minute, of course, as I was planning to be home to do my paper (or at least, to put off doing my paper). It should be fun, though. Shopping, shopping, and just for good measure, a bit more shopping. I'm actually mostly done my holiday shopping, so for me it will just be hanging out.

On another note, I've been watching that new TV show "Heroes" that everybody is talking about. I haven't been able to understand all the hype - to me it's been confusing more than anything else. But I realized tonight that even though I still don't "get it," I'm hooked. My poor mom was trying to talk to me, and I was glued to the TV. There have been some interesting twists, so I can't wait to watch again next week!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

And so it begins

After the busy week I've had, I guess the holiday season has officially begun around here. I've been out for TWO dinners, and am about to cry, looking at my schedule for the next few weeks. Concerts, dinners, parties . . . what is a girl to do? I only have one nice holiday outfit, which I can't be seen wearing twice in a row, so I had to order some pretty shirts from Sears. At least that way I can wear the black pants a few times. Need to get some nice shoes though, to really dress the outfit up.

School is busy too . . . assignments are keeping me on my toes, and of course, I have a big paper due on December 6th. If I was smart, I'd start it now (well actually, real brilliance would have meant starting it back in September), but I just don't feel enough pressure to get working on it. I didn't realize that procrastination was such an inborn characteristic! Maybe this week I will start writing, and see where that leads me.

And so the fun continues . . . another episode in the Life of Kelly!

Monday, November 13, 2006

Fabulous Concert

So on Saturday night I went to a concert with my dad and my good friend. It was a guy that grew up here that has done really well for himself. Country music, but sort of the more modern country. Anyhow, the concert was great! The opening act was two guys named Max and Mike, and they played about 7 songs. They did a great job - I would definitely go see them again. They're local, so it was nice to see what kind of talent is around town these days. Then came the main show - Aaron Lines ( His show was great . . . lots of energy, and he is very good at charming the audience between songs as well. He writes a lot of his own stuff, and he does a good job at it too. He's got a couple of CDs out, so if you like country music at all, check it out. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised. I know my dad was - he was prepared to just sit and listen, but he actually enjoyed the show, and was impressed with Aaron's talent.

Other than that I've done a really good job of frittering away my weekend. I still haven't even started my homework OR my paper! I did do some visiting with friends, though, and spent lots of time online. Today I have to get down to business . . . UGH!

Thursday, November 09, 2006

The new dog bed

So, the Sunday before Halloween, my mom and I took the girls to a "party" at the local Boys' and Girls' Club in town (they provide support for kids, through activities, etc). There as a silent auction going on at the same time, so I bid on a cute dog bed that was being offered. Then I forgot all about it, since we were busy with the kids and stuff. On Monday I got a phone call that I'd won the bed. Spent more than I ever would on a dog bed normally, but at least I supported a good cause. When I brought it home, Farley immediately claimed it as his own. So far he sleeps on it every chance he gets.

Wrote my midterm exam last night, and found it surprisingly understandable. That either means it went really well, or else it went horribly wrong. I hope it's the former, but I guess I'll find out in time.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Studying is fun . . .

Or, it would be, if I was actually doing it. Instead, I watched half an episode of House MD (it's on again later, thanks to satellite), am now watching Gilmore Girls, and then am heading to bed for a good sleep. Tomorrow is the midterm, so I guess I'll study at work. Always a most effective study area ;) I don't know why I don't feel any stress or pressure . . . I think it's because I feel like I've worked so hard for so long, and now I just need a break. Regardless, I do still have to pass this class.

We got even more snow overnight . . . when I got up this morning the curses to Mother Nature were genuine. Having to shovel the deck three days in a row is just evil. I am hoping and praying that it doesn't snow again tonight, or I might cry in the morning. And the cold weather will cause the tears to freeze to my face :(

Hopefully my friends in the south are experiencing better weather. Vicky?

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Enough Already!

Yeah, I know, my last post was so poetic, about nature's cotton candy. This morning when I woke up and saw yet more snow (after shoveling the driveway and deck yesterday), nice poetic words were FAR from my lips! I actually do like the snow, but only when there is somebody else to clean it off the street and deck. But this weekend the family unit is away, so I'm the dishwasher/snowblower/garbage-taker-outer. UGH!

The dogs don't seem to mind the snow. In fact, Miss Grace is having quite a bit of fun with it. She likes to run in it, burrow her nose in it, and the sneeze it all out. I took a few pictures, but will just post the one for today.

I have a midterm exam on Wednesday to study for, and a paper due December 6th. Guess I'd better get off this computer and get some work done.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Softly Falling Snow

Today we are having softly falling snow where I live. You know, those beautiful big flakes that drift lazily to the ground and collect like nature's cotton candy. It's just so pretty, and I feel like I can enjoy it, since it's not too cold out. Although I don't normally love winter (I can't enjoy the cold, no matter how much I try!), I love it when the weather is so gentle and pretty like this.

Farley is not impressed. He was standing on the deck, giving me his best "I'm freezing" act, shivers and all. However, since it's not even ten below Celsius, I know he's fine. Grace, on the other hand, thinks it's great fun! She loves to walk around the backyard with her nose to the ground, letting the snow accumulate on her muzzle. Then she lifts her head and gives a mighty sneeze. I love watching dogs experience snow for the first time, it never fails to make me smile.

Tonight I'm going for dinner with some friends, and then coming home to snuggle in a warm bed with two dogs, and probably watch a good movie. Not the world's most exciting Saturday night, but I'll take it . . .

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Howloween!

So, tonight is the night for ghosts and goblins . . . and we've had our share of them tonight. I guess we've had about 35 kids come through, in all sorts of costumes. It's so much fun seeing the little kids come through, asking for candy and saying their thank you's. My two nieces came - what cuties! It was nice to see their costumes. And our family friends brought their kids too, and they had awesome costumes. I love seeing all the kids!

Farley's been barking and barking, so he's hanging out in my bedroom. He's still barking from there, but at least the kids aren't as afraid of him. Grace has been pretty brave - every time the doorbell rings she races to the door, and as soon as she sees the kids in costumes, she runs away. But at least she's running to the door - that's a big sign of bravery and attitude.

I hope everybody else has had an enjoyable All Hallow's Eve!

Friday, October 27, 2006

It's a zoo!

Yes, my life is a zoo lately . . . but I knew it was going to be like this this week. Thank goodness it's finally over and I can sit down and enjoy my new puppy (and of course, snuggle with Farley as much as possible).

Wednesday and Thursday were taken up by the PMAC (Purchasing Management Association of Canada) BAD Days (Business Associate Days). I helped organize the Casino night on Wednesday night, and it went really well. Thursday were the Open Houses and speakers, and they were enjoyable too. It was fun to be involved with, but it has taken up lots of time over the past couple of weeks.

Today was class again - once a month just isn't often enough. It took me at least an hour to "remember" everything again this morning, and that's not an effective use of my time or the professor's time. But it can't be helped. We're halfway through the course now - this fall semester is just flying by!

Tonight the girls arrived for the weekend (my nieces). They are having quite a bit of fun with Gracie, and she has warmed up to them really quickly. They're both active girls, so they can be overwhelming, but she has been very brave. She will be a well socialized puppy, that's for sure!

Tomorrow I get to sleep in, and then my weekend "duties" start, including grooming two dogs and working on my term paper. If I leave it until last minute, I'll be very sorry. That being said, as a chronic procrastinator, I doubt I'll get much done this weekend ;)

Hope everyone out there is having fun!

Monday, October 23, 2006

Home Sweet Home

After a whole heck of a lot of driving, I'm finally home again! And VERY glad to be here too. I drove down to Lethbridge this weekend, to have a visit with Farley's breeder. Lethbridge is a solid 10 hour drive from here, so it was looooong. Luckily I had a good friend along for company, and I was able to make some pit stops along the way. I will write more when I get some time, but I just want to say, it was GREAT! Every person we stayed with (my friend and I) was wonderful about providing a place to sleep and wonderful company. We had a wonderful time, and I would do it again in a heartbeat (although I won't enjoy the driving).

I came home with an additional passenger :) Her name is Grace, and she is the future of KLAD Cockers. She is a very beautiful and sweet Cocker baby that has the world before her. She has been just wonderful since I left Lethbridge with her . . . great in the car, and no crying last night even though she had to sleep by herself. I am SO proud of her! She adores her big brother Farley, although the adoration does not go both ways. I think he'll adjust, especially since she has such a lovely temperament that is compatible with his.

I want to thank my good friends Vicky and Valerie for sharing this wonderful girl with me. I hope we do you VERY proud!

Welcome home Gracie-Lou-Who!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

TV Show Lineup?

Okay, now I know some people consider the baseball play-offs important, but come on! Where are my beloved TV shows? Every Thursday my heart beats a bit faster at the thought of The Office coming on. But I have scanned the entire satellite TV line up for tonight, and can't find my show! Where is it???? How I am gonna get my fix? Thank goodness Grey's Anatomy was on, or I'd really be cranky.

I hope the play-offs end soon, so I can start watching my shows on schedule again. For now I guess I will have to satisfy my cravings with Season Two of the Office.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


Why is it that some people have blinders on? Which means that no matter what you try to tell them, they won't listen? I find that so frustrating that I almost over-compensate, and try too hard to see the other side of a situation. I'm in the middle of a situation that seems very divided - one side against the other, for lack of better descriptive words. But in all honesty, if everybody took a really hard look, I think the "answer" is somewhere in the middle. I really don't think any one person is more right or wrong than the other, it's the perceptions that are skewed. It's very irritating to be in a situation like this, because the people on the "other" side don't seem at all interested in trying to meet halfway.

There isn't any real answer in this situation, other than people agreeing to disagree. The situation itself can't be changed, only the way people handle it. And I have no influence on anybody else, so all I can do is try to be moderate in my assumptions and statements, and go from there.

Thanks for reading my friendly neighborhood rant for the week :)

Monday, October 16, 2006

Back On Track

Since taking a 2 week off from posting in my blog, I feel like I should be updating everybody more regularly. Unfortunately, there's nothing really exciting enough to write about! Other than my irritation with the baseball playoffs, which are pre-empting all of my favourite TV shows. I have been reduced to watching House re-runs, and I HATE knowing how they end! Ugh! I guess I could do my homework, but it's not due for two whole weeks . . . what will I do the night before if I don't have homework to stress about?

So I'm hitting the road again this weekend. This time I'm taking a trip down to Lethbridge, to visit with Farley's breeder Valerie and my friend Vicky (Valerie's niece). And yeah, I *might* be looking at a puppy girl while I'm down there. And yeah, she *might* be coming home with me. And no, I'm not excited at all. HUGE understatement!

My friend is coming with me for the road trip (my friend that is moving to Calgary). On our way to Lethbridge we're stopping in Calgary, to visit a good friend of ours that has been traveling in Europe for the past few months. I can't wait to see her, and I can't wait for the road trip with my friend. What a weekend it's going to be!

Stay tuned for updates.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Home Again

Well, I've actually been home for almost a week now, but several things have kept me from posting. Worst of all, I got food poisoning on the way home from Toronto, and was sicker than a dog on Tuesday. I pretty much thought I was going to die. It was gross! And then we had dinner with my cousin on Wednesday night, and I had a meeting on Thursday night and a play to go see on Friday night. Yesterday I worked at a friend's art gallery and groomed a dog last night. Phew! It's been crazy here!

Toronto was awesome . . . spending time with Ange is always amazing, and this was no exception. When she picked me up at the airport, it was cool. I was walking towards the baggage carrells, and Ange was walking towards me . . . it was almost like one of those romantic movies where two people are walking towards each other in slow motion. Minus the romance, of course. Thursday we spent the day with her class at the Toronto Zoo. Let me tell you, if you want to sleep well, spend the day with 20 young kids (7-8 years old) at a fun place. I was so exhausted I could hardly think afterwards, but it was a really fun day. The kids were well-behaved, for the most part, and I always enjoy trips to the zoo.

Friday we took Billy to the airport. This was the one negative of my trip. I don't think I've ever posted it here, but I don't like Air Canada at all. I had to book Billy's flight through them, though, to get a direct flight from Toronto to Philadelphia. So in early September I phoned to book the flight, got the confirmation number, and assumed everything was fine. Silly me! When we got to the cargo office (and getting there was an adventure in itself), the guy at the counter told me that Billy wasn't booked on a flight at all. ARGH! I was ticked off, but I decided to just suck it up, since the guy was being so helpful. So we got Billy booked on to the next flight, and after a nice long walk, I left him in good hands. The fellows in cargo were very kind and friendly, so I felt okay with things. I called Billy's mom to let her know of the changes, and left it at that. Later in the afternoon I was a bit curious as to why I hadn't gotten a call from Billy's mom about his arrival, but I figured that she was spending time with him.

We get back to Ange's place, where the reception on my cell isn't that great. By now it's after 5pm, and Billy should have been with his new mom for a couple of hours. I was a bit peeved that I hadn't heard anything, and was about to call her. That's when I got a voice mail from another friend, telling me that Billy was still in Toronto!!!!!!!! I saw red, my blood pressure went off the scale, and I was so angry! Apparently the earlier flights to Philly had been cancelled, and NOBODY had called either myself or Billy's mom. He ended up not getting to Philly until 7pm, and he was stuck in his crate even longer, because his mom had to go to the main terminal at the airport to do the customs clearances. I will NEVER fly Air Canada again as long as I have an option. This was a disgusting experience for me!

Friday night Ange and I played Euchre with her parents. We played well, but still ended up losing. I was a bit distracted, but still . , , we just weren't getting the cards ;) On Saturday we went to Ange's brother's place for Thanksgiving dinner. The food was amazing, we all ate like pigs. I'm not usually a huge fan of turkey, but theirs was to die for. It was a really nice visit, I enjoyed spending time with Ange's brother and sister-in-law. I got to meet their daughter who just turned 1, and goodness, is she ever sweet!

Sunday was the big day . . . in the morning we went to Ange's church, which was nice. But Sunday night was . . . Wicked!!!!!!!! It was everything that I've ever imagined it could be. The vocals were incredible, the band was awesome, and I loved every single second of it. It was worth the wait, and I can't imagine ever having seen it with anybody but Ange. It was a wonderful experience.

Monday we spent some time with Ange's friends, and it was nice to see them again. We had fun, which we always do when we get together. And I spent the rest of the day getting my stuff together and trying to fit it all in. We looked at Ange's parents' pictures from their trip to Scandinavia, and we played some cards. And we ate a wonderful meal. Tuesday I made the long journey home.

So that's the trip to Toronto in a nutshell. A big, wordy nutshell. But I wanted to share the whole nine yards.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Outdoor Fun

Today I worked at a family friend's art gallery . . . it was pretty interesting. Not very busy, but I got to help people choose mats and frames for their artwork, which was a lot of fun. Apparently I have an eye for colour, which made me proud. One couple brought in an absolutely stunning 11x14 picture of a Monkshead flower (up close, with dew drops on it, in vibrant purples with green foliage). It was so interesting picking out matting and frames to enhance the beauty of the picture. I enjoyed my day, and I will be going back to help out again in a couple of weeks. Because it wasn't too busy, I got the chance to read some of my Risk Management textbook, and so far I seem to understand it. So that's good . . . hopefully once the assignment is posted, I still understand it all ;)

When I got home, I took the dogs outside to play fetch. This runs the wigglies out of them, and I get to enjoy the fresh air. Well, at first my niece Kenzie was helping me, by throwing a separate toy for Billy. Well then my mom brought my other niece out (Tashie), and we had a rousing game of soccer. Somehow it was 3 on 1, with my mom, Kenzie and Tashie all taking me on. I should be sore in places I never knew I had by the time tomorrow rolls around :) But it was good exercise, and I should sleep soundly tonight. The dogs enjoyed it too, so it was really a family affair.

Then we came in and enjoyed birthday treats, to celebrate Farley's 7th birthday. Mom bought birthday hats for everyone (at my request), and she had picked up some wonderful treats in Denver too. Asking for a sit stay from an eager 13 month old puppy and a 2 year old that sees "treats" on the table is inviting trouble . . . but I managed to snap one decent picture.

All in all it was a good day, although not without sad news. My good friend's husband got a job in Calgary, which means she'll be moving sometime before Christmas. I will miss her immensely . . . we have GOOD times together. But we'll just have to make more of an effort to get together on a regular basis. And it's definitely a good move for them.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend guys!

Friday, September 29, 2006

Risk Management

Hmmm, I think the title of the entry says it all. Who on earth can stand 8 continuous hours of Risk Management? Especially when that person discovers that it is just a fancy term for "Finance." UGH! I barely survived my first Finance course . . . and apparently this one is supposed to be harder. Fabulous. That being said, it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. I managed to stay awake for almost the entire class, and I think I even learned something. So it hasn't been a day completely wasted.

I have a busy few days coming up . . . tomorrow I am working in a store owned by a friend of the family. Her husband is ill, so they have travelled to get him some medical treatment. My mom and I offered to work in the store while she was gone. She has an art store, so it should be interesting.

Sunday I have a paper proposal to finish (thankfully it is almost done) and some reading to do for Finance. Billy needs a haircut, since he goes to his new home a week from today. I have to unpack from my trip to China (yes, the one in May) so that I can pack for my upcoming trip to Toronto. I leave Wednesday morning, so I have lots to do bewteen now and then.

Next weekend I will be with my bestest friend in Toronto. I can't wait! We are going to see the musical "Wicked" which should be . . . well . . . wicked ;) And we will do some shopping, and I even get to spend a day with her class at school (grade 2/3 split). It's going to be wonderful. And being so busy will keep my mind off Billy being gone.

Take care and enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Bad Drivers

Okay, I have fought my increasing desire to blog about bad drivers ever since I started this blog 9 months ago. But now the desire has overruled common sense, and you get to read my rant about driving in Fort McMurray.

I know that everybody thinks they're a good driver, but I really AM a good driver. I drive only slightly over the speed limit, I signal when changing lanes or making turns, I stop at red lights and stop signs and I share the road with other drivers. So how is it that in a city of 70,000 people, I am one of the only good drivers? I mean, I work with some pretty intelligent people - surely they drive well. Obviously they're just never on the road when I am.

It drives me absolutely nuts when people don't use their signal lights, especially to indicate a lane change (or to let me know that they're about to cut me off). I mean, last time I checked, I didn't have ESP. So how am I supposed to figure out that the jerk driving slightly ahead of me is going to swerve wildly into my lane? I happen to have it on good authority that signal lights are included in the base price of a vehicle, and they can not be removed. So why don't people use them? It's not even that difficult to do . . . sigh.

And when the person in front of you is in the intersection trying to turn left, it's important for them to clear the intersection when the light turns yellow. However, it is NOT important for you to race through the intersection behind them. What makes you so important that you must beat the light?

And don't get me started on parking . . . that's a whole other rant! I love all these people that park in the lane at Safeway or WalMart, and sit in the car waiting for a spouse or friend or family member. I mean, yeah, they look pretty important. But as far as I know, the parking lot rules apply to everyone, not just us un-important people. Yet I see it all the time.

I guess this is one of those things that will just make me crazy, because if anything, drivers are getting worse, not better. Time to stay home or just take the bus. At least that way I don't get road rage. Goodness knows where that could lead . . .

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Surprisingly nice

Yes, today the weather has been surprisingly nice! I took the boys outside to play ball this morning, and it was still on the cool side. They enjoyed playing ball in the less opressive weather, and I enjoyed sitting with the sun shining on my face.

As the day progressed, I did various things around the house, including giving Farley his pre-birthday bath and haircut. Let's just say he was less than thrilled with the activity, but he looks fabulous now. Such a handsome guy! Well, after the bath and haircut (I groom in the basement of the house) I came upstairs to see the sunshine streaming in through the windows and warming up the living room. So I took the boys back outside for another play session, and to try and take some pictures.

As anybody who reads this blog knows, Farley is not overly fond of Billy. In fact, Farley's perfect world doesn't include Billy or anything remotely resembling Billy. But with the promise of some yummy treats (okay, and some veiled threats about not getting dinner without cooperation) I got a decent picture of the two of them together. Farley has no idea that his late birthday present is the permanent absence of Billy. He will be thrilled!

I hope you managed to take advantage of a beautiful Sunday too, regardless of where you live. And even if the weather wasn't great, I hope your day was!

Thursday, September 21, 2006


Yes, I'll admit it. I am addicted to technology. Anything new and advanced is something I must own. My mother (typically the voice of reason in our family) can usually convince me to wait until something has been on the market a while before investing, but sometimes she can't reign me in. I decided to make a list of my techno-goodies that I have right now.

1. My laptop - trust companion. It is an HP Pavilion notebook that I bought a couple of months ago, and I love it. It has wireless capabilities, bluetooth ability and a most wonderful DVD reader/writer (which does CDs too).

2. My cell phone, which can play MP3s, can take pictures with a small flash and can also capture video.

3. My two MP3 players. One was a gift from my mom, and one was an appreciatien gift from a co-worker. The new one is an iPod Nano, and I am having lots of fun with it.

4. My portable DVD player. Normally I just use it when I travel (like in hotels), but this week I have been taking it on the bus to and from work (it's a 40 minute ride). I've been watching dog shows on it. Yes, I know I'm a geek!

5. My Palm Pilot, which I almost never use, but I just HAD to have.

6. My digital camera, which is used often and much-loved

I'm sure I'm the proud owner of more techno-goodies, but these are the ones that figure prominently in my life. Technology - where would I be without it???

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Another transformation

This time it's not me though . . . on Sunday, I finally gave Billy his retirement haircut. Now that I've decided not to show him anymore, I felt it was time for the long hair to go. While it is most certainly beautiful, it is far from practical. Especially for a dog whose idea of a good time is running through the bushes at the back of the yard and collecting stickers in his coat. The first snip of the scissors was tough, I admit. But after that was done, it got easier and easier. Now he looks very cute, like a little teddy bear. And his coat feels so soft, just like chenille. After his haircut, he raced around the yard like a crazy-dog.

I sent the pictures to his new mom, and she liked the trim. I'm pretty pleased with it myself. All it will need is a bit of touch-up before he heads to his new home. And then he is all set for his new life!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

The transformation

Well, that which I feared greatly is taking place. I am slowly but surely changing into . . . a girly-girl. Yikes! For many years I have taken great pride in NOT wearing makeup, NOT owning high heeled shoes and NOT doing my hair. Somehow, since buying the dress and some makeup, I am "into" makeup. On Friday night, I bought more! Gasp! I now have several colours, which means I can change up my look (as long as my matching skills are working).

I also find myself eyeing up shoes in stores, and skirts, and pretty tops. Dammit! Dressing nicely takes work, and I have enough to do. But apparently, my inner girl is dying to come out.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a meeting to go to, so I must put my face on . . .

Friday, September 15, 2006


You know, I am so lucky to have the friends I do. I spent the evening with a good friend of mine, and we had a great time! We went to the mall (with no particular aim) and just wandered around, chatting and shopping. And when we got bored of that (it's Fort McMurray, it took less than an hour to browse everything), we went for supper. We weren't in any kind of rush, we just sat and ate and visited. It was a really good time. And it reminded me, yet again, how fortunate I am to have these friends in my life.

I firmly believe that every friend fulfills a purpose of some sort in my life. Some friends are more casual, good for a laugh every now and then, but nothing too serious. Some friends are the listeners; the ones that you can talk to for ages without even realizing how much time has passed. Some friends are just an extension of you: they provide comfort, because they know you almost as well as you know yourself (or better!).

I want to thank my friends for being there, especially over the past couple of months, while my life has been like a roller coaster ride. Each one of you, in your own way, has helped me feel a bit better, stronger, and more prepared to tackle life.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

I am woman!

Yes! I have a feeling of pride and accomplishment today! We have been having trouble with the taps in the main bathroom upstairs (main floor of the house). They were very expensive when we bought them 5 years ago, and yet they started leaking a few weeks ago for the second time. This time my mom couldn't fix them. When I was in Edmonton for the wedding, I went to Home Depot to find the little replacement cartridges, but they don't stock them. So my mom phoned several plumbing supply places until she was put in touch with the manufacturer of the taps. Since these are high-end taps, they have a lifetime warranty, and the company sent out 4 cartridges for us.

The cartrudges arrived in the mail today . . . the same day that my mother left for Denver for 2 weeks (for work and vacation). So I had a dilemma: either figure it out myself, or leave everything for my mom to fix when she gets back. I did it myself! I did have to call my mom for some guidance, but I am quite proud to say that we have normally-functioning taps in the bathroom that no longer leak. Way to go, myself!

This just goes to show that a good woman can do anything herself . . . well, except for get pregnant. That definitely takes two.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Eats Shoots and Leaves

Well, it took longer than I had anticipated, but I finally finished the punctuation book. I've been on the road a lot and am often too tired to read, hence the "delay." I have to say that this was a really worthwhile read! Entertaining enough to make me laugh out loud at times, I certainly feel like I learned something from reading this book. I never thought that the history of the comma could actually be interesting, but it is. And the proper grammatical usage of the various punctuation marks was interesting too . . . there were some things that I just didn't know.

So if you're looking for a good book that is educational and funnny, I highly recommend "Eats Shoots and Leaves" by Lynne Truss. Two thumbs up here.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Not meant to be

Well, after driving many hours and spending almost as much time grooming, Billy and I came home empty-handed. He was a bad, bad boy in the ring, and so the judges just couldn't award him the points. Personally, I don't blame them. The other puppy was quite nice, and VERY well behaved. I have to admit to feeling frustrated and disappointed yesterday. This was Billy's last hurrah before he goes to his pet home, and I really wanted him to earn that Champion title. But the drive home (5 loooooong hours) put it into perspective for me.

I'm sure that Billy (in his own quirky way) was telling me that he's just not interested in being a show dog anymore. Yeah, he was happy enough in the ring, but he was pulling all over, desperately trying to get to spectators and dogs outside the ring. He was far more interested in being a social butterfly than being a show dog.

I don't have it in me to send him to another show with a stranger, just to try and get those last 2 points. It's not worth risking his wonderful temperament and loving personality. So, he retires with 8 points.

As his new mom said to me, he was a "bold, brazen article" this weekend (she's Irish). And she thought that was great :) So at least I know she will appreciate his antics, and love him even when he's a bad, bad boy!

I'm finally home for a while . . . no travel for business OR pleasure. I love the thought of my own bed, and hanging out with my man Farley. He's been missing me a lot, so we are going to have some one on one time over the next little while. That will make us both happy!

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Tuckered Out

Yup, I'm just plain tired. I travelled to the wedding on the weekend: 5 hours of driving each way. Got home and unpacked, just so that I could pack my bags again to fly to Calgary for work (just over an hour flight each way). And tonight I'm heading out again . . . this time for a dog show. My mom keeps asking me if I really have to finish Billy, or can I stay home and rest this weekend? Well, after investing time and money in earning the first 8 points, it would be a shame to quit before getting the last 2. So off we go . . .

Things are starting to get busy around here again. I don't actually start attending classes until the end of this month, but since one class is an independent study class with a paper due at the end of it, I really should get started on the research (ahhh, the familiar opening call of the procrastinator). I'll have been away two weekends in a row, with two trips through the week as well. And there's no shortage of things to do at work or at home either. I think my friends are starting to forget what I look like!

It's less than a month until Billy goes now, so I have to train some manners into him too, so his new mom doesn't think I'm a complete heathen when it comes to raising dogs. I don't really think she knows what she's getting into, despite my many warnings. She sure is excited - it makes me smile just thinking about what a wonderful pair they will be (until he eats her shoes/underwear/money/whatever). And Farley will enjoy the brief peace and quiet, until a new puppy enters our lives.

I'm almost done my book about punctuation - a book report will follow soon!

Monday, September 04, 2006

What a weekend!

Well I am one tired girl, but I had a great weekend! This was the whole reason for the big shopping expeditions over the past two weeks, and the makeup lessons. The dress, the purse, the makeup, the shoes . . . everything came together this weekend to make things fun and exciting.

I stayed with good friends for the weekend. They are such wonderful people - not only did they welcome me into their home, but they also welcomed Billy (yes, Satan) into their home as well. He considers their house the 24 Hour Off Leash Park, because he plays with their dogs all day long. He even got to try their daughter's trampoline . . . and he seemed to enjoy it! That tail sure never stops wagging.

Friday night was the Mendhi party for the groom. This was a gathering of his friends and family, similar to a bachelor party I guess (I've never been to either one, so I'm going out on a limb here). The women looked amazing - most of them are Indian, and they had such colourful saris and other traditional clothing on. I was just amazed at the beautiful colours. All of the women at the party got to get Henna put on their hands (on the palm). It is considered lucky to have this done during such a celebratory occasion. It should last about 2 weeks, and it looks pretty cool (I will share pictures when I get them downloaded, I promise).

Saturday was a free day for us (not for the wedding party - they were busy), so I spent the day with my friends. We ran errands, went for lunch, and just hung out. Spent time outside with the dogs and had a really good visit. We even went to a movie that night - Little Miss Sunshine. I recommend it as a VERY funny movie. Crude, but very funny.

Yesterday was the ceremony at noon, and the reception at night. The ceremony was held in a Mosque, and it was very interesting. We had to remove our shoes, and we sat on the floor for the ceremony. There was explanation in English, although the ceremony was in another language (not sure which one). The bride and groom wore traditional Indian clothing, and they looked amazing. The reception was a lot of fun . . . the bride and groom wore "western" wedding clothing (a suit and a wedding dress). Lots and lots of dancing took place! The Indian food was very flavourful but also VERY spicy. For a spice wimp like me, it was almost too much. But definitely very tasty.

Three late nights in a row is a lot for me. I'm pretty tired tonight (and really, they weren't late nights by "normal" standards), and looking forward to having a good sleep. But I just had to share how much fun it was!

Thursday, August 31, 2006

One Month

Well, it's been a month since I said goodbye to my Quigley. It's been a month of ups and downs, but I find myself feeling okay most of the time. I am lucky to have great friends and family to support me and help me through the tough times. There are little things I miss though. Nobody barks at the door to go outside anymore . . . Quigley was the only one to do that. These guys just go outside whenever I remember to let them out. And I can actually leave things on the counter without worrying that they will go missing. The two remaining dogs can be left in a crate without me wondering how they will escape. There's nobody softly snoring on the back of the couch while I check my email, read a book, or watch TV.

Farley and Billy are truly doing their best to fill the hole in my heart. I am lucky to have these guys to keep me busy. I know this has been tough for Farley - he has been quieter and less active since Quigley left. Billy, however, acts like nothing has changed. He is the Energizer Bunny, that's for sure.

The big news around my place is that I have decided to find Billy a new home. Many people would read this and think that I'm a horrible person. Some people would even venture to tell me that (not in so many words, but . . . ). Yes, Billy is happy with me. Billy is happy with anyone. He loves me, but that doesn't mean he can't love somebody else. Billy is not a good fit with my family - he is so active and energetic, and with me working all day, he doesn't get the exercise and attention that he deserves. He is not neglected, but he needs to be kept busy. He absolutely adores children, and he should be somewhere that he can hang out with them whenever he wants to. Also, I have to think as a breeder too. I no longer have a female to work with as far as breeding goes. The female that I co-owned with friends came down with health iussues and had to be spayed. So that avenue is closed to me. My household has a strictly enforced limit of 2 dogs, and since I don't pay the mortgage, I have to follow that limit. Billy is a lovely dog, and I would hope that he would make some very nice puppies. But without a girl to breed him to, I am stopped in my tracks. Hence the dilemma I have faced in recent weeks.

So I talked to some friends, and as fate would have it, a good friend of mine had a friend looking for a well-bred black and tan male. We started emailing, and voila! Billy has a new mom. He won't be going until early October, so that I can try and finish his championship (just 2 more points!). This way I can spend some quality time with him before he goes.

The new home is Puppy Heaven. There are kids there, and another dog, too. And enough attention for at least 5 dogs, but all given to him (by his new mom). She is over the moon, and although I know it will be sad to let him go, I couldn't be happier with this home. It's exactly what I wanted for him.

People can think of me what they will, but in my heart and head, I know that this is the right thing to do for Billy and I.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Geeks of the world . . . Untie!

Okay, this post is just going to prove how much of a geek I am. But most of the people that read this blog on a regular basis already know that :)

The other day, my mom bought me a present. A new book. Now, I love to read, so any new book gets me excited. But I have been wanting this particular book for quite some time. I had been trying to hold off on buying it, so somebody could get it for me for Christmas. Luckily for me (I have NO patience), I didn't have to wait that long. The book in question? Lynne Truss' "Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach To Punctuation." So far I have only read the foreward and the introduction, but it is a great book! Since I consider myself a budding writer, proper punctuation is important to me. And the fact that it is presented in a humorous and straightforward manner just makes this book even better!

Believe it or not, this book was a #1 New York Times bestseller, so apparently I'm not the only closet punctuation geek out there.

I look forward to sharing my thoughts on this book when I'm done. It appears to be a light read, so I should be able to polish it off in a few days or a week. Watch here for the review!

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Fun Times

Well, I have to say, I didn't know being feminine could be so much fun! I've been in a bit of a panic lately, because I have this beautiful dress to wear to my friend's wedding, but I am a total loser when it comes to makeup. I can do the absolute basics (powder application, mascara, lip gloss), but anymore than that is a real challenge for me. I don't want to wear this fabulous dress but look like drek, so I asked a good friend of mine for some help. Like a champ, she came through for me.

We had a blast today! We went to Shopper's Drug Mart and bought the essentials . . . I didn't even know brown eyeshadow came in so many shades! I had fun "learning" some of the basics, especially from somebody who really knows. Then we went to Moxie's for lunch (okay, not a necessary step, but I was starving), and just had fun chatting. We never run out of stuff to talk about, and we always have a great time. Then we came home and "made me up." It wasn't nearly as hard as I thought it would be, and I actually think I looked pretty good.

Then I put the dress on, and we did a photo shoot. Granted, the sun was in my eyes (so I look like I'm making a face in all the pictures), but my shoes looked HOT! I am doubly proud, since not only did I apply my own makeup, but I walked through the house, onto the deck, and down onto the lower level in my new shoes. Without falling, tripping or breaking the heels. Not bad for this self-proclaimed slob.

I don't feel comfortable posting a picture of me in the dress on my blog, so feel free to email me if you'd like to see a picture. Or ask Vicky to share it with you - I did send it to her!

PS I haven't washed the makeup off, cause I am just feeling so glamorous!

Saturday, August 26, 2006

MORE Shopping!

Okay, I have to say that my tolerance for clothes shopping is never very good. But today I tried to find a top to match the most insanely coloured skirt EVER. It was so cute when I bought it - bright pink with a sort of paisley print. But I'll be damned if I can find the right top for it. I think my mom and I went into every store in Fort McMurray today (granted, we have very limited shopping) and I tried on many, many tops. I discovered that Reitman's has the most whacked out sizing scheme ever . . . NOTHING fits! I was feeling sort of whale-ish by the end of it all. I did find a top, and I think it will be nice, but today was just exhausting.

So, at an East Indian wedding, apparently you're supposed to wear a different outfit for each part of the wedding. I found this out yesterday . . . but I guess I should be grateful that I found out at all. Friday night is the Mendhi party for the groom (my friend) and his friends and family. Luckily this won't be too formal, so I can wear the top and skirt outfit that got completed today. Then on Sunday, I need two outfits. One for the ceremony, and I'll be wearing my new dress to the reception that evening. This will be more dressing up than I've done ever. Hopefully there will be pictures to prove that I actually can look nice once in a while ;)

So Business Law is done . . . and my MBA is slowly drawing to a close. I actually only have 3 courses left to do now. One is an independent study course in the fall, which results in a 25-30 page paper. One is probably another kind of economics course (I'm not 100% sure) that will be delivered in the standard format (lectures, exams, etc). And then our "Capstone" course in the winter session is a paper, a presentation, and another paper after a trip to Houston. The trip is optional, but they highly recommend it.

It's hard to believe that I'm almost done. I can't wait to have FREE TIME!!!!!!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Really, it's interesting!

So, I re-read my last post, and I realized that nobody would ever believe me that Business Law is interesting. Heck, before the course started I was planning ways to keep my eyes open for 8 hours of law lectures. But I swear on a stack of bibles (which is legal, by the way) that the class is really interesting. The fact that the prof looks like Mister Bean definitely helps . . . and he kind of talks like a Valley girl, what that upward lilt at the end of every sentence. And he has one wicked sense of humour!

I got another very sweet gift in the mail today. I am totally awed by the kindness and generosity of people. My friend from Texas (the one that lives in San Antonio) sent me a beautiful memorial coin, in memory of Quigley. Very thoughtful, and something else to make me cry. But it will be something nice to have, for sure.

I went shopping with my mom after school today (wow, does that sound juvenile or what?). I am attending a wedding over the Labour Day weekend, and I have no nice clothes or shoes to wear. Living in Fort McMurray, the options are HUGELY limited, so I wasn't holding out a lot of hope for finding anything. The first shop we went to had a dress that looked awesome on the hanger, and like a garbage bag on me. I guess being overweight does not make clothes look better. So I was feeling sorry for myself and kind of depressed. But my mom convinced me to plow forward, and so we did. We went to a shoe store. Oh my goodness, apparently when you wear size 9 WIDE shoes, nothing pretty fits your feet. All I could find were big, clunky (comfortable) shoes that would not look nice with a dress. UGH.

At the third store we hit paydirt (well, considering the prices, THEY hit paydirt). I found a beautiful (and unique) brown dress that I am sure nobody else will have. I also found some wonderful new shoes (made in Italy, copper coloured and so sooooft) and a pretty Swarovski crystal necklace. Thank goodness my mom was treating! I will hopefully be wearing the same dress for my grad dinner in the spring . . . so some of you might actually see pictures of me wearing it.

It's nice to have a shopping story that actually turned out well. Doesn't happen often for me!

Monday, August 21, 2006

Business Law . . . Interesting!

Well, I have to admit that when I looked at the course outline, my first thought was "how am I going to stay awake all day talking about law?" But today we had our first two units (a whole day of classes) and it was actually really good! I feel like I learned a lot, and actually enjoyed the lecture too. Thank goodness I hadn't really gotten a head start on that paper - the topics that the prof handed out aren't even CLOSE to the outline I had. So sometimes procrastination pays. And just like with trying to eliminate a bad habit in my dogs, that rarely rewarded bad habit has just been HUGLEY rewarded, so trying to get rid of the bad habit is even tougher.

I have a really bad headache today . . . so I guess it's official that the IV treatment done last week wasn't as effective as we'd hoped it would be. As in, it wasn't effective at all. Sigh. All those pincushion treatments for naught. Oh well . . . I'm going to give it more time before I write it off completely, but it means suffering through headaches for a few days.

Mom and I went for a walk with Billy . . . she's looking at peoples' front yards, trying to get ideas for what to do with ours. I'm simply trying to tire Billy out so I can have a half hour to work on school stuff without having to jump up and take a kids' toy away from him, food wrappers, or something else. He enjoyed the walk, but isn't really that tired. Damn!

Guess I should go get some reading done. With a week long course, procrastination takes place in units of minutes, not days ;)

Saturday, August 19, 2006

What a day! Whew!

Holy smokes, when your mother asks for help with a few chores around the house, run like hell! Or at least, if MY mother asks for help, definitely run as fast and as far as you can! The other day she mentioned that she needed some help with stuff around the house, so I agreed to lend a hand. What a huge mistake LOL

Mom rented a U-Haul cube van so we could do a couple of trips to the dump. I was thinking, oh some garbage around the yard or whatever. Yeah right! My brother and I hauled THREE couches (heavy, heavy, heavy) and an armchair, as well as debris around the yard and a rabbit hutch to the dump. Oh yeah, and a lawn mower and an old BBQ. It was a lot of work! My arms are still sore from the IV sites, so I was feeling just wiped right out. Sweating like a pig (I know, I know, I'm such a lady LOL) Anyhow, my brother and I had fun at the dump, tossing stuff all over the place. For some odd reason, we found it really hard to "toss" the couches very far, but we had plenty of fun anyhow.

Then we had to pick up my elliptical machine from my friend's house. This friend has been out of the country since early May, and I bought the machine a couple of weeks prior to that, and I still hadn't picked it up. Yeah, I'm embarassed. Anyhow, we picked it up today, and just MOVING it was a work out! It weighed a freaking ton! It was at least as much work as the three couches. We were both aching after that.

THEN . . . yes, not done yet . . . my brother and mother trimmed umpteen branches off the maple tree out front. I was personally a little disgusted with still being working at like 2:30pm, so I was inside, hiding with my niece. We were watching the most thrilling Disney movie called "Ice Princess." Ick, totally Disney. TOO Disney, in fact. So our last load to the dump was a cube van FULL of branches and leaves. They're not fun to toss either . . . with all the branches and stuff, they don't get any air at all.

So now I'm tired . . . soaked in the hot tub for a while, and am going to bed nice and early. Tomorrow I have a paper to work on, dogs to groom, and stuff to do. Let's see if I get even half of it done ;)

Friday, August 18, 2006

Away, but not gone . . .

Sorry I've been absent lately. I'm feeling bad for not posting in a few days, but I was, shall we say, indisposed. As those of you that know me well know, I get headaches on a very regular (essentially daily) basis. I've been seeing a neurologist in the city that recommended this IV treatment to break the cycle. Basically I go to the hospital twice a day and get IV treatments. The first IV site was in my right wrist, and I had to wear a splint, so I could hardly type at all, let alone update the blog. Last night they had to move the IV to my left arm, which seemed like a good site, but it "came out" overnight, so I have a new IV site in my left wrist. Tonight is my last treatment, and I can NOT wait!

Farley's also been under the weather - he's had the runs for a week now, poor guy. I did take him to the vet on Tuesday, but the bloodwork was all good, well within the normal ranges. So he's on a treatment which seems to be helping. The two of us make a fine pair!

I know I'm copying my friend, but here are some blogs that you should visit:

Visichy - my good friend Vicky's blog, it is a hoot to read! (
Rokairan - Vicky's sister's blog, it is extremely well-written and interesting. When the new TV shows start in the fall, I imagine she will start her reviews again (

Those are two blogs I visit every day, checking for updates. They're well worth reading. I get plenty of inspiration from Vicky's blog, but I don't want to copy ALL of her ideas in one post, so I will keep this entry short ;)

Thanks to everybody that visits and reads . . . I'm glad somebody thinks my writing is worth reading on a regular basis!

Monday, August 14, 2006

What a beautiful gift

I came home from work today to see a large box sitting on the dining room table. I wasn't expecting anything large, so I was curious as to what it might be. I was surprised to see it addressed to me, from a company called "TreeGivers." I kind of had a vague idea of what it was (not sure how many options there are with that kind of company name), but was still in the dark for the most part. So I opened the box. And once I took the newspapers and tissue paper off the item inside, I cried like a baby.

Two of my very special friends had a tree planted in memory of my Always Angel Quigley. It is being planted in Alberta, and I think it's a wonderful way to complete the circle of life. From Quigley's death comes birth . . . and that is exactly my kind of thing. There is a framed certificate, and a lovely note that was included as well. Now every time I drive through the province of Alberta and see a sapling, I will wonder if it's Quigley's tree.

Thank you to two VERY special ladies . . . this gift has truly touched my heart.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Not Much Is New

Not much is new lately, however, in the interest of posting regularly, I thought I'd write something. Should be real entertaining for you to read . . . but whatever.

I have had a supremely lazy weekend again. Of course, I have NOT worked on my paper at all. Luckily there are several hours to go until the weekend is officially over, so I still have time to change that. And I DID do some reading for the Business Law course, so I haven't totally wasted my weekend :) How's that for NOT procrastinating 100% (oonly about 95%).

I did get Billy groomed up too. I usually groom him on Sundays, after we've been to the off leash park, but he jumped into the hot tub on Saturday night, so he got done then. BRAT! It's really getting old now, it's not funny or cute. It's just a royal pain in the butt that I have to change all plans and groom my dog (don't get me wrong, I didn't actually have plans, but I could have . . . sometimes I do have a life). I used a different shampoo and conditioner combo this time, just to see how it would work, and I'm not quite as happy with it. Guess we'll go back to the usual. It's just that I have so many bottles of stuff that I thought I should try something new.

Farley has the trots . . . I had a moment of severe panic last night, thinking that this could really be something serious. I would assume that once you have one pet get sick and pass away, you go through a period where you think everything is majorly serious. However, his attitude is still good and he's not dehydrated, so I'll try to get him in to the vet tomorrow, and take it from there. I tend to worry more than necessary, so it's probably nothing, but I'll let my vet make that call. After all, I haven't seen them in a couple of weeks . . . I'm starting to miss the place ;)

Not much else to tell . . . just wanted to try and be more regular (no, not THAT kind of regular, you smart ass!)

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Keeping Busy

Well, in all honesty I'm not keeping *that* busy, but I should be. School starts again in a couple of weeks, and I have a nice big paper that I could be preparing for. But somehow I keep managing to put it off. Anybody that's read much of this blog knows that I am the queen of procrastination, and this assignment will be no different. The paper is for a Business Law class that I will be taking (a week-long intensive course), and if I was smart, I'd get a head start on it. But there are good shows on TV, good books to be read, and good stuff to surf around for on the 'Net. So I have yet to do any actual work yet.

The boys are doing fine. It's still weird for me to say the boys and mean only two boys instead of three. The numbers feel off now, as if the order in the house has been disturbed. I'm hoping to convince my mom to let me bring in a third dog (you know, to restore order to the galaxy) but I'm not holding out a ton of hope. We'll see - so far this is a work in progress. By no means do I think that I could EVER replace Quigley (give me some credit please), but I think a new dog would keep my mind off of things. Of course, training Billy would accomplish the same thing, but a new puppy would be WAY more fun!

I got a new CD yesterday, it's a Broadway musical soundtrack. Definitely not for young kids, it's called "Avenue Q." It's a RIOT! Very racy stuff, but pretty funny and the tunes are catchy. For anybody that is into musicals at all, I highly recommend it. I got it for a good price on eBay, so you don't have to spend a lot on it either. It seems to be a take on Sesame Street (with puppets and everything), but definitely NOT Sesame Street content.

Other than that, not much is new. Work has slowed down a bit, since the people I was covering for are both back. That definitely makes my life a bit easier. I've had enough to keep me on my toes, but not enough to make me feel stressed. Just the way a job should be :)

Well, this will be a short post . . . just wanted everyone to know that I'm surviving. Thanks for all of the emails and notes about Quigley, it really has helped me a lot.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

The "Happy" Basket

Well, I have to say that yesterday was one of the toughest days I have had to make it through. Granted, I'm young, and haven't suffered many losses in my life (thankfully my parents are still both with me, as is my brother and all of my close friends). But still, Quigley was a family member, and letting go was not easy. I knew it wouldn't be.

I am a member of several online groups for Cocker Spaniel owners, and the outpouring of love and support was amazing. Not only were there messages posted for Quigley and I, but I received many private messages and emails. It sounds corny, but I could almost feel their prayers holding me up. I'm not a super religious person, by any stretch of the imagination, but I do believe in God and the power of prayer. For me personally, yesterday just cemented that. I have belonged to these groups for several years, so some of the people are as close to me as the friends that live right here.

One friend and her husband made me up a "Happy" basket. Tons and tons of delicious chocolates, a very cute purple jewelled notebook and matching pen, and two Adam Sandler movies. Happy Gilmore (which I had recently told them was one of my favourite movies of all time) and Billy Madison. It was such a thoughtful and loving gesture, and I was touched by it.

Farley was pretty subdued when I got home from work. We brought him to the vet clinic with us, because I thought it was only fair that he get a chance to say goodbye as well. He has lived side by side with Quigley since he was 8 weeks old, so this is a big loss for him too. I know he's grieving, and it makes me sad. But I am so thankful that I have him to hold close and cuddle with. He still wants to play with his toys (that's so ingrained it will never change), but he spent a lot of time very close to me as well.

Even Billy was changed somehow, although I can't put my finger on it. He tends to be oblivious to most stuff, but he was slightly calmer yesterday. Only slightly though . . . I don't want to go overboard.

July 2006 has been a month that will go down in my personal record books as one of the worst days ever. That being said, at least I got the month to spend extra time with Quigley and spoil him more than normal. I'll always be thankful for that.

Sunday, July 30, 2006


I sure haven't felt like posting here lately. Haven't had much to say anyhow . . . I've been very stressed about Quigley. Wondering when the time would come, and whether or not I would know. Well, I definitely know, and now is the time. The spark has gone out of his eyes, and it's plain to see that he's in pain. He tries to hide it, but when he sleeps at night his breathing is so laboured it makes me sad to hear it. My vet clinic isn't open on weekends, so I am taking him there tomorrow. My mom is coming with me, bless her heart. Neither one of us will be fit to drive, I'm sure.

Quigley's given me 8 wonderful years of his life. He has been my constant companion and heart healer. When things have been tough, he's been there to lay by me and remind me that there is at least one soul that loves me. Throughout the stages of upheaval or change in my life, he has remained calm and steadfast. He changed from a terrified, abused dog into a wonderful family pet. He loves everybody, including kids. He has been incredibly gentle and loving with my two nieces, and I know they will really feel this loss too.

I just can't imagine the house with only two dogs. No dog that is a professional at getting into the cupboards to find snacks while we're at work. No dog to stealthily open our work bags and steal our lunches in the morning. No dog to insist (repeatedly) that we share our meals and snacks with him, regardless of what we're eating. No dog to coax outside in the rain because he thinks he's made of sugar and might melt. I just don't know what I'll do without my old man to hold me together. I know I'll make it, but it sure won't be easy.

Quigley - know that I love you no matter what, and I will always remember that you started this crazy Cocker Spaniel obsession. I will forever be changed by your presence in my life. Keep an eye on us from above, okay?

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Saying Goodbye

Over the past few months, several of my friends have lost dogs to illness, old age or accidents. Every time somebody I know loses a dog, I feel sad for them, and it makes me wonder how I will deal with it when the time comes for me. The time for wondering is done. One of my dogs is sick, and he’s going to die. And more than likely, I’m going to have to choose when.

I’ve never tried to convince myself that this would be an easy process. But I never truly realized just how hard it would be. I find myself swinging between acceptance of the inevitable and grief at my loss. I am angry because he’s young and it’s too soon, but then again I am also thankful for the time that we have had together. With some people, when I talk, I actually sound like a rational human being. And with others, as soon as I try to open my mouth, my throat closes and my eyes sting with tears. In the evenings, I seem to be able to handle it better. But when I’m sitting at work, the grief overwhelms me. How will I handle things when he’s gone, if this is how I deal with the anticipation?

There are a million thoughts running through my head with every minute of every day. When this dog looks into my eyes, trustingly, I wonder how I will know when it’s time. He can’t tell me when he’s had enough, so I have to interpret his body language and symptoms. But how can I tell when it’s not too early, not too late, but just the right time to let go? I’m very afraid of making him wait too long, for my own selfishness. The thought of this dog, that has given all of himself to me, suffering because I can’t bear to say goodbye, is a painful one. But I also don’t want to swing too far to the other side of the spectrum, and let go too soon. I know that people always say you know when the time is right, but I still am not confident that I will know.
As my dog lays beside me at night, sleeping, I think about all of the time we have had together. He has been a part of my life for over eight years now, and there have been plenty of good times. He’s also frustrated me more than once too. When I brought this dog home, he had experienced little human contact and he had lived a fairly unhappy life. For the first year, I taught him to enjoy people and life, and to enjoy being a spoiled pet. Occasionally I could almost sense his disbelief at his new life. It didn’t take him long to learn to accept it. He has never looked back to those early days.

Not only do I worry about this dog, but I worry about my one other dog. He has had this dog as a companion for his entire life (starting as a puppy), and I don’t know how he will handle being alone. It’s not like they’re inseparable, but they do have a relationship. Once, when my other dog was around a year old, we lived away from this dog for several months. My schooling made it necessary. My other dog pulled a large amount of hair off of his left flank, and I’m sure it was from missing his companion. I know he will grieve this loss as much as I do.

I am terrified by all of this. I feel juvenile for saying so, because as a mature adult, I should be able to deal with this, but I just feel frozen in time right now. I find myself sitting at work on occasion, with a tightening in my throat and tears pricking my eyes. For no observable reason, most of the time. Of course, I know why, but that doesn't stop my co-workers from thinking that I am losing my mind. I don't know how I will deal with this, and keep my life on track. But I'm going to give it my best shot.

I love you Quigley - together we will enjoy each and every day as never before. There will be NO regrets when this journey ends.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Warning: Venting and Ranting!

Have you ever had one of "those" weeks? You know, the ones where each day somehow ends up being slightly worse than the one before it. Considering that my hormones are out of whack this week anyhow (I love being a woman!), I don't think that's helping my situation.

Monday - class doesn't start until 1:00pm. How can that be a bad thing, you ask. Well, consider that a thunder storm woke me up at 7:00am . . . and all of a sudden life isn't as good as it was half an hour prior to that. Then, to make matters worse, the Oilers lost the Stanley Cup. Granted, that doesn't really have an effect on my life, but it was disappointing. I sure was rooting for them, but the 'Canes just outplayed them.

Tuesday - an obscenely long line-up of traffic to get downtown. What is happening to my city? As I'm sitting in my car, my glasses are putting pressure on my right eye (as if they're bent in towards my eye a bit). So I take the glasses off to try and bend the frame slightly, and they snap in half across the nosepiece. Hmmmm. Not so good. Especially considering these are my back-up glasses - my good ones broke in Shanghai and I haven't had them fixed yet. But still, I walk into class wearing glasses with a broken lens. I kind of like the extra attention they bring me! At lunch I go to the mall, to see if I can get the lens replaced. Turns out my eyes were done just over 2 years ago (yeah, like 3 seconds longer than 2 years) and so they won't even consider fixing my glasses without a new eye check-up, to the tune of $78. Fabulous. I just love walking around with broken glasses! So I book an eye appointment. After school I run to Safeway (grocery store) to try and get a gift card for a friend whose birthday is coming up (Starbucks). The girl tells me (with a completely straight face, too) that they are out of gift cards, so I'm out of luck. With this I head home, cause I'm just cranky.

Wednesday - Somewhat better than the other days . . . but only somewhat. I take my oldest dog Quigley for a walk. This dog hates heat and has almost no stamina left (he's 10, but acts 15). Why do I take him for a walk? Am I even thinking? Apparently not. They are spraying some kind of noxious chemical on the walking paths, so we walk on the sidewalk. 10 minutes into the walk, he decides that he should be carried. Umm, I don't think so. So I drag him home. Fun stuff . . . . glad I'm trying to give him better quality of life.

Thursday - wait, that's today! End up having to go well out of my way to drop something off at my brother's house, despite the fact that they have TWO cars and at least one of them could have stopped by our house instead. No call of thanks . . . hope they got what they needed. Go for lunch, and almost get hit from the side by a classmate. And get this, this person is mad at ME! Well excuse me, but when was it legal to whip around cars simply because they're signalling and slowing down to turn into a parking spot? And if you were REALLY watching, wouldn't you have seen the person in front of me whip into that space (since the car was twice as big as mine), forcing me to drive forward instead of turning? But according to this person, I should have stopped and allowed them to go around me. Guess my idea of traffic laws is skewed. Go for an eye exam, so far so good. I still have two eyes, and I can see out of both of them (better with corrective lenses, mind you). Have to bargain and plead with the lab tech to get the new lenses tomorrow, otherwise I have to wait 2 weeks. The good news is that it all only cost $300. Great.

So for laughs (and stress relief) I took all 3 dogs for a walk today. Yes, even the old one that has no stamina. What was I thinking? Was I thinking? I walked 3 dogs with one leash (and three extensions), and made it home in one piece. It was actually the highlight of my week.

At least tomorrow can only get better. Stay tuned . . .

Monday, June 19, 2006

Go Oilers?

Well, as great as I think it is that the Oilers made it to Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals, I just don't think they're going to win. I'm rooting for them, of course, but the game is just not being played well by Edmonton at all. Granted, I'm an armchair fan - I couldn't skate and manage a stick for any amount of money. But after seeing a phenomenal Game 6 from the Oilers, this game is just disappointing.

The good news is the cooler weather. Woke up to raging thunderstorms this morning - even Farley was a bit taken aback by the noise. None of my dogs has ever been afraid of storms, but Farley was on my chest when I woke up, shaking a bit. Poor baby. He settled down once he realized that I wasn't worried, but it was an interesting way to wake up. So much for sleeping in this morning. It got sunny through the day, but it's cloudy again now, so hopefully it stays cool through the night.

Back in school this week - Business Strategy is the course. It's our Capstone course, which means it's meant to pull together everything that we've learned to date. So far it's pretty interesting, although we've only had a few hours of lecture so far. Our first case study was actually a military case study, which pulled together the various elements of strategy, fit and implementation nicely. I think it's going to be a good class.

Not much else to write about . . . life just isn't that exciting. But whether or not the Oilers win tonight, I am damned proud that they've made it as far as they have. It's been a great ride!

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Hotter than Hades!

Well, my southern friends are laughing at me, but Fort McMurray is enduring the first "heat wave" of the year. Granted, for most people, this is just barely warm, but for us it's hotter than heck! It's been close to 30 Celsius all week (around 86 F), and the dogs are melting before my eyes. Poor Quigley struggles with the heat every year, and it seems that as he ages, the toll it takes just intensifies. This week he's been sleeping and slowly following us from room to room, admonishing us with his eyes (damn humans need to stay in one room!). He is drinking plenty of water, but not doing much else. Poor guy. Even Farley is hot - he is on and off the bed all night long, panting and restless. And I sleep in the basement . . . so this weekend he's getting a new haircut, something that allows him to tolerate the heat a bit better. Billy, well, he has finally calmed down. I almost dread cooler weather, since we are all enjoying the "heat-soaked" Billy of this past week.

I'm back in school next week - this time it's for a Business Strategy course. I've been slogging my way through the textbook, but I find it tough to get into reading a textbook after working all day. So it's slow going, and I have lots to get through before Monday. There are articles he wanted us to read too, so I have to look them up, print them out, and try and get them read before Monday. Always lots to do.

Other than that, it's pretty much the same old thing. Everything on TV is re-runs, and since I managed to catch most of my shows this year, there isn't much to watch. That's a good thing, since I have about 50 books to read (okay, I might be exaggerating a week bit), so I should get some reading done this summer. After this week of school I get almost 2 months off, so I should be able to get lots of reading done during that time. I welcome book suggestions too - I'll read just about anything (just not Anna Karenina again, it was painful enough the first time around).

Guess that's it for this episode of "the life and times of Kelly"

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Back In The Swing of Things

Today was Billy's first trip to the dog park in over a month. Poor guy has been missing out, first because of my trip to China, and then because of dog shows. So today was a very exciting day for him. As we drove to the park, he was whining and wiggling with excitement (either that or he really had to pee, it's hard to tell). As soon as I let him out of the car, he ran a HUGE circle around the entrance to the park, barking his head off to announce his arrival. He played with his friend Roxie (from obedience school, a pit bull-lab mix), and he also played with a Bulldog puppy that was too cute for words. His friend the Bullmastiff wasn't around today, and neither was his buddy the Golden Retriever. But he managed to play pretty hard for about 40 minutes anyhow. Then we came home and he had a bath. So he's all soft, shiny and pretty again. For at least 5 minutes.

Not much is new for me personally, except the horrible news that I somehow deleted my entire website :( What a heartbreaker! I recently got a new laptop, so I had to reinstall all of my programs (there is still lots to be done), and that includes Front Page. So as I was playing around with trying to update and publish Billy's page, somehow I managed to replace my entire website with just his page. UGH! So now I have to start over, but I don't have any of my pictures yet (Staples is backing up my old hard drive for me), so I can't even do anything. What a pain in the hind end.

Small update today, but don't want to get out of my blogging habit, so here you have it!

Thursday, June 08, 2006

It's All Fun and Games

Sheesh, where does the time go? Seems like just yesterday I was getting doing my last blog update, and it turns out that was 2 weeks ago! Yikes! I guess when I have dog shows, school and work to worry about, the blog takes a backseat. Sorry all . . . but I don't think people are flocking to the blog either, so it's not like I'm disappointing the masses.

So I'm finally over my jetlag . . . that took at least a week. I combined it with dog show fatigue the weekend of May 26th, so the lines between different forms of tiredness got blurred. I actually felt so tired some days that I felt sick to my stomach. Thankfully that has passed, and been replaced by dog show and work fatigue. That kind of tiredness I can handle. I know I'm still tired because I'm sleeping like a baby at night, and it's unusual for me to go a whole night without waking up once. So I'm enjoying the good sleeps, anyhow. Farley is too - because of the heat, he is sacked out every night, snoring and dreaming (I think).

The weekend of May 26th I had a visitor - my good friend Vicky came, and brought her little Cocker girl Mercedes with her. Despite having major WestJet issues (let's just say the Fort McMurray branch SUCKS), we had a fabulous weekend. It was the Northland Kennel Club dog show, which is 6 shows in 3 days. Tiring, but a great chance to get points on your dog. Mercedes walked away with 4 Best of Breeds, a Group 1, a Group 2 and two Group 3's, so that was nice for Vicky. And Satan (yes, my own dear boy) managed to pick up 6 points from the Bred By Exhibitor class, so I was thrilled too. This is despite being skinny as a rail and refusing to gain weight. He is now eating the same amount as a small horse, so I'm hopeful that he won't be so skeletal when I take him to the Cold Lake shows.

Last week I had a one week intensive course for school on Bargaining and Negotiation. Just try and negotiate with me now! I'm a pro! Okay, maybe not a pro . . . or even very good . . . but at least I understand the principles and could argue myself into a better position than ever before. The class was very practical, with lots of trying of techniques, so I found it to be very useful. Two weeks off, and then another one week intensive on Business Strategy starts. The textbook is pre-assigned reading, so I'm slogging my way through that now.

Last weekend (yes, the one that just ended) there were back to back Cocker specialties in Edmonton, in conjunction with the NACA (Northern Alberta Canine Association) shows. Both days were lots of fun, and Billy even won a prize for being first in his class (never mind that he was the only Bred By dog LOL). It was really great seeing some of my dear Cocker friends again, and especially some of my friends in other breeds. Both Billy and Farley participated in Junior Handling, and for me, that was the highlight of my weekend. Farley looked so awesome with his friend Alyssa (whose mom has Shibas, but we won't hold that against her LOL), it was almost like he was never sick! I have to admit, I cried while watching him strut his stuff with his special girl. And Billy works so well for Coralee (who spent time with him while I was in China) that they are a fabulous team.

So now it's back to life as usual. Busy at work trying to catch up from being away for almost a month. And busy at home trying to get organized and get the clutter down to a dull roar. One more show for the summer and then I'm back on hiatus, so it had better be a good one!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Absence makes the heart grow fonder

Hello my dear friends, I'm back! Done my gallivanting around the world, and am back to reality. Except for the remains of jet lag, I feel pretty good! I managed to relax on my trip and NOT stress about anything (well, except for my Finance grade, but I passed!).

China was incredible, amazing, and everything in between. Yes, there was a significant amount of culture shock, but I think the fact that I have traveled before helped me out a lot. I wasn't unprepared for things to be different. Our first stop, Beijing, is a city of 17 million. That's just over half of the population of Canada! It seems so unthinkable to me . . . mind you, in a country of 1.3 billion, I guess that's a fairly small city.

We spent 5 days in Beijing, 1 day in Hangzhou, and 4 days in Shanghai. Each city was enjoyable, although each was slightly different. Beijing is a more serious city, the centre of China as far as government goes. The architecture is conservative, and so are the people. Hangzhou is beautiful - much smaller than the other two cities, at only 7 million people. It is close to the 3 gorges dam, and site of the West Lake and LinYing Temple. Shanghai is much more cosmopolitan, with more "outgoing" architecture and the people seem more relaxed. Shanghai is how I picture New York to be, with energy and flash. There are 19 million people living in Shanghai.

I promise to spend some time writing about my journeys and adventures, but for now, this small taste is all I can provide. I have a dog show this weekend, and two specialties next weekend, so lots on my plate!

Sunday, May 07, 2006

I'm Leavin' On A Jet Plane

Yep, that's right . . . the big moment is finally here. My trip. The much anticipated "China trip." After planning and buying and packing and dreaming, the big adventure starts tomorrow. And I think I'm ready. I packed everything up today, and bought a few small odds and ends that I still needed. Tomorrow I drive to Edmonton to drop Billy off with his babysitter (hope we're still friends after she spends 2 weeks with Satan), and Tuesday morning I'm outta here!

Today started off well - the dogs let me sleep in, and I got packing done in a fair amount of time. We even had fun at the dog park, although Billy wasn't really into playing until his buddies arrived. Got home from dog park intending to have a quick nap, but Billy had other plans for me (he always does!). I took the dogs outside to play, and my dad was sitting in the hot tub. Does this sound familiar???????? Yep, he went flying in . . . no indication that he was taking the giant leap, yet there he went. BRAT! So anyhow, now he's clean and fresh for his stay with my friend. And I'm pooped, cause of no nap.

Oh well, at least life is exciting for me . . .

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Another Day . . .

Yes, I am running out of interesting things to write about. Unlike my friend Vicky, I haven't even had any good dreams lately! I think the stress of final exams, not being ready for my trip, and work are all working together to prevent any form of creative thought in my head. Which is just great, since I have an article to submit for the Cocker magazine, and no particularly good ideas. Lovely (insert a disgusted face here)

We just finished up with 2 days of rain, so the dogs are very antsy. Billy is driving everyone nuts with his incessant pestering. He really is a good dog, but confinement just doesn't suit him well. He needs to get out for walks, playtime and a chance to stretch his legs. Poor guy is just going nuts with boredom right now!

Quigley needs significant prodding to even stick his nose out the door. He's a firm believer in NOT getting wet, and will hold it for days, if needed. Of course, that just doesn't work for me, so I spend many minutes trying to entice him outside. Even the best treats are not enough to convince him, so invariably I have to physically haul him out the door.

Farley doesn't care - he just goes where I ask him to, without hesitating. Have I mentioned that he is the best dog in the world??? It's not that he enjoys going out in the rain, it's just that he wants to do what I ask of him. I know, I'll never find a man that can measure up to the obedience and loyalty of this dog. Why on earth do you think I'm still single?

So, I should be working, but my mind is on overload. So I think a good cup of hot chocolate and I might be ready to start my day by noon LOL

Friday, April 28, 2006

Leave It To Beaver

Yeah, I'm sure you're wondering what on earth a beaver has to do with American Cockers . . . me too. The other day I was having dinner at a friend's place, and she asked to see my tattoo. If anybody doesn't know, I have a tattoo of an American Cocker in show coat on the outside of my left ankle. Anyhow, my friend looked at it upside down and promptly asked me if it was a beaver. Huh? That is BY FAR the strangest thing I have had it called. So, because everybody was drinking except for me, the talk got . . . bawdy, for lack of a better word LOL And somehow, it became accepted that I have a nice beaver. Not something to advertise, especially to the parents, but it is funny. I've always wanted a nickname, just didn't think that was quite how I would get it. Beaver . . . but my good friends call me Beav ;)

On another, much more exciting, note ~ I bought a new car today! I have been thinking about downsizing from the Caravan for some time now, and I finally bit the bullet. I am the very proud and excited new owner of a 2007 Dodge Caliber! It's silver, with a grey interior, and a ChillZone compartment. The compartment acts like a mini-cooler, for water or pop. How cool is that? I pick the car up on Monday (it's Friday now), so I wonder if I'll be able to sleep between now and then? This is just too cool! I took a couple of pictures with my cell phone, so they're at the top of the page. This is my first brand new car, and I'm very happy about it.

So no dog news today . . . can't fit anymore excitement into my day at this point :)

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Billy, P.H.D.

Well, Billy's last obedience class was last night. He now has two "titles" behind his name - PHP (pretty hot puppy) and PHD (pretty hot dog). I sure wish my MBA had only taken 8 weeks and cost $120!!!

Anyhow, I was SO PROUD of him last night. The teacher set up an obedience obstacle course that included walking over ex-pens (which are like wire playpens fr dogs) laid on the ground, heeling around big gates, running through a tunnel, waeving through pylons, a 5 second down stay, a small jump, and then a recall. He had no issues walking on the gates, or heeling through the barriers. He is so good.

He got smart on the tunnel . . . went in fine and then turned around and popped back out the "entrance" as I ran down to the other end. Smart aleck! The teacher ended up having to block the entrance, and then he ran through fine. Did the weaves through the pylons okay, and the 5 second down stay. Needed encouragement to do the little jump, as he's never seen one before.
But my proudest moment was the recall. Billy is not an expert at stays . . . he finds it hard to sit still and he doesn't like me walking away from him. But he was the ONLY puppy to hold his sit stay until I called him!!!!! Yahoo!!!!!!!

We start the next set of classes (a repeat of these ones, actually) next week. We'll miss two weeks while I'm away, but it'll be fun anyhow. I just LOVE obedience classes!