30 June 2014


Strafe and I just got home from a long but fun trip out to the Pacific Northwest. We started out by going to the AWC Team Practice last weekend, which was great. Held at a great facility in Washington, and I think we have a really good team of dogs and handlers this year, despite quite a few new faces to the FCI team (including myself!)

Because one of the Large dogs can't make it to the 2nd practice, we took pictures of them all together for fun, wearing supporter shirts! Be sure to buy a shirt, the funds go directly to supporting the team!

Great photo by Carrie DeYoung!
I wasn't able to bring a bunch of shirts home with me to sell, due to traveling with a carry on size bag for 12 days, but I can probably get an order together if there is interest! Email me if you'd like one!

After practice I got a ride back to a friend's house, where I just chilled and took some nice walks, enjoying the beautiful scenery and weather for a few days.

I admit, I'm coming to really like Washington. I could probably live there and be quite happy.

After a few days there, I took a really short (36minute!) flight down to Portland to teach for 2 and a half days. One of the reasons I like teaching there is that it is one of the very first places I went for an "away" seminar that I had to fly to, and it's fun to come back and see a few of the same people each time.

Meanwhile, I left the girls with a new in-home boarding place; an agility student who lives pretty close by, and has a POOL. The girls were apparently in heaven and didn't miss me at all:

Kiba enjoying a swim

Seri can't believe she is done swimming!
(both photos by Kristin Anderson)
And now I am back home, all 5 dogs back together, tired but happy. One thing I've discovered in recent years is that I really do like to travel, even though it can be pretty stressful at times and being such an introvert (with a few other oddities involved in my brain chemistry as well;) can make it trying to be around people for so long, I really do like it. It's nice to be home and relax and have down time, but by the time a few weeks have passed I'm usually ready to jet off to another new place again.

Right now my next trip is to the European Open! So I'm in final planning stages for that; all the big ticket items are taken care of; flight, rental car, hotel, major sight-seeing is planned. Really looking forward to competing at the EO and the BCC this year, I'm just crossing my fingers that we get reasonably good weather for both events, or at least not so bad that the conditions become dangerous for the dogs (deep mud, etc).

Ven is almost 6 months old now, and he is definitely taller and longer than when I left on this trip! I will get some pics of him in the next few days for his 6 month birthday. He's coming along nicely, and while I see some similarities with Strafe, he is definitely not a clone and is totally his own dog. I anticipate that we will get along just fine though!

In sadder news, Drifter's mother Tera passed away today at the ripe old age of 17. I was watching Drifter rolling around in the field and could hardly believe his 12th birthday will occur later this year. Aside from a few tiny indications, you'd never know he's a senior now, and he's just as naughty and pushy as ever.

Drifter rolling in the field a few weeks ago, enjoying retirement

Drifter at my very first international competition, IFCS 2010 in England

Drifter's mother Tera, photo by Kaitlyn Dreese who ran her in the latter half of her career and loved her dearly.

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