Sunday, February 27, 2011

Before and After

I love before and afters. Home makeovers. People makeovers. Business makeovers. It's all good. Any kind of before and after pictures are great. Show me what you've done, but you need to give me a picture of where you started so I can be suitably impressed :-)

So, this morning, it was time for Vinnie to get groomed (again!). I thought a before and after picture would be good as I was planning on taking off a lot of that hair he's been carrying around all winter. Time to go back to a nice sporting clip (short body, longer legs blended into the body). This is the before. His hair was longer around his neck, shoulders and chest area (2-3 inches long in places) and getting shorter as you go towards his tail where it was about 3/4" long.

And here is the after. My first picture was taken at 10:07am and the second at 1:03pm. I usually only take about two hours to groom him, but I was taking my time and trying to get things "right".

He is now squeezable, hugable and smells so good!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

A little bit of "art"

It's finally done!! When Frank finished his PAX, I vowed this particular ribbon was not going to sit in a tote and get wrinkled. I have totes full of ribbons and rosettes, but some just have a bit more meaning and need a little special treatment:

I had this done at Michael's - they do really nice work. Sorry for the not so great photo - I had to stand at an angle to try to reduce the reflections from the flash. Now I just have one more area in my living room that needs a piece of Poodle art... working on that one!!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Happy Birthday Vinnie!!

Vinnie is two years old today. I can't believe how fast the time flies. It seems like only yesterday that Melinda and I were driving to Chicago O'Hare to pick him up. He was the set of lungs we heard screaming to get out of his kennel in cargo when we went inside to pick him up. Thankfully, that has changed!!

However, some things never change...

May 2009 (11 weeks):

February 2010 (one year)
February 2011 (two years)

Happy Birthday Vinnie - here's to MANY more!!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Focus on the Good!

Vinnie and I went to an agility practice in the Quad Cities today. It was a good thing. I learned a lot. Our biggest problem is that Vinnie will get the "rips". I have not decided what causes this yet. It could be a lot of things. If he runs one way, I run the other with his toy and today he was right there back on his tug. This is a vast improvement from over the summer. We are focusing on the GOOD. I like the drive I get with a toy, but he seems to be able to focus a little better with food. We need a balance here. At home I do a lot of throwing a toy and feeding for the retrieval of the toy - we'll give this a try next time. After watching my video from the practice session today (THANK YOU Tammy!!!!!) I am feeling much better than I was during the session. I learn so much by watching my training videos:

1. Yes, he was getting the rips a bit today, BUT he was running right back to me within a few seconds. (even though it seems like an eternity when you are gasping for breath!).
2. I need to be a little faster with toys and food (even if that means packing my cheeks like a hibernating hamster!).
3. We need to work on some lateral distance this summer (I am NOT fast enough to run him like I run the IGs).
4. I need to run with more intent - I am still to hesitant with him.
5. I need to tell him while we're running when he's done something good.

So... since we are focusing on the GOOD - here is the good stuff from today:

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Snow Dog!!

Brian decided today that after the nasty snow we got this week, the dogs needed some paths plowed in the back yard. It turned out awesome!!

I took Vinnie and his Wubba outside to "test drive" the paths - they are a huge success!! Vinnie needed to burn off some energy - winter needs to go away NOW!!! I miss grass!!!

You can see in the video that the snow is about a foot deep in most places (Vinnie is about 18" at the shoulder and it's a bit deep for him).

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Meet Warren...

Meet Warren... the water heater (everything needs a name, right?). So let me tell you a little bit about how Warren came into our lives. Once upon a time, Brian woke me from a dead sleep with these four little words: "Marsha... the water heater!!!!!".

You'd be surprised how fast you can wake up when someone yells at you (not nearly as fast as when your dog makes that horrible pre-i'mgonnabarfupeverythingi'veeatenforthelastthreedays sound, but pretty darn quick).

The old nameless water heater was spewing water all over the basement floor at an alarming rate. We could not find a water shut off valve for the water heater, so I shut off the main to the house (boy that puts a damper on things!!). Brian soaked up all the water with towels and shop vacs while I tried to contact plumbers. Guess what? Plumbers are not open at six in the morning!! They do, however, have answering services. After a couple calls, I found a plumber that would come replace the water heater that morning. Yeah!!! So.... $988 later, we have Warren (who has nice water AND gas shut off valves). And so they lived happily ever after (or at least for the eight years of Warren's warranty)

Now... we are getting the storm of the century (so they say). It's just snow and wind... a lot of both. This means drifts and convincing the flat coated weasels to go outside. The curly coated weasel doesn't seem to mind the snow although he was rather quick with the pottying tonight. So this little film is for you Melissa... Florida here we come!!