Friday, December 26, 2014

Leaving Monday

I leave in 2 days for Thunder Bay!!! omg that snuck up on me!! I have got to get all the dog's meals sorted out, they are both going to different houses , I need to get myself packed, decide what I am wearing to the church, should I wear a different outfit from the one I am wearing to the reception?  There will be family pictures taken so I must look nice!! I am having my hair done Monday morning as the church is at noon, but I really really need someone to do my makeup seriously!  I haven't got a clue how to do it and I want to look really nice, it is not only my nieces Wedding, but it is also New Year's Eve!!

I have decided to cancel my plane ride from Lethbridge to Calgary.  I am going to drive instead, that way on the way home I can just jump in my van and come home as it will be late, I will still be arriving soon then if I had flown!  Air miles is closed of course until Monday, so I have to remember to cancel my  flight Monday morning,  I will have to drop the dogs off where they are staying as I want to be at the airport sooner rather then later, and you never know in Calgary what kind of road conditions or accidents or terrible weather they may be having, better to be safe then sorry.

That's it, I am taking my computer so I can still upload photos and fun things, even though I absolutely despise flying I am getting excited, a couple of pills and a glass of wine, piece of cake hahaha!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Looking Good For Santa!

Well today I did Lync's Christmas bath and yesterday I did Kort's.  I have always given the dogs baths for Christmas, except for last year due to my accident.

It is so awesome to have my own bath facilities at home now!  I can groom my dogs whenever I want, at any time of the day, so awesome! I don't know why I didn't do it sooner.

I took pictures of the boys after their baths as always, then took one of Kort and Lync together, seeing it pulled at my heart a bit, Tate isn't in it.  It's hard, but I am grateful.  I still have Kort who is my baby, and Lync brings nothing but joy .  I am glad they have each other, they love each other so much!

So here you go, the official 2014 Christmas photos......

Brothers :)

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Just Because :)

Made this video just because :)


Monday, December 15, 2014


I just had to post something positive for today and this is it, today is Lync's Gotcha Day, 1 year ago today I brought him home and he continues to Make Me HAPPY !!!


You know I have read through my blog posts for the last year and more are negative then poisitve.  I try, really I do, to be a positive person, I used to be, now I just feel like a shell of who I used to be :(

We just can't catch a break it seems money wise.  2 nights ago on the way to work Brad's brake line broke in his car, he was ok, but it could have been really bad, Brad drives the highway to work, one hour each way.  He had to have his car towed back to town.

The mechanics called this morning, apparently the rear drums were leaking oil through the entire car and that compromised everything to the tune of $500 plus, I give up, really, I give up hope of ever being financially stable, of every having a stress free life for Brad and I, it's just not in the cards. Of course we don't have the money, we don't even have a credit card.  I had to phone my mom for the money, add it on the what I still owe her. 
Kort needs to go to the vet, I might have to cancel it, we will see.

I am worried sick about Brad, the stress of working so hard for nothing, if he has another episode and lands in the hospital , well lets just say it won't be good.
Can't even write about it anymore, it just makes me more depressed then I already am :(

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Mom Update

So my mom is still waiting for her bone marrow tests to come back, they should be ready in about a week.  I am very worried about her, she has had a second blood transfusion now as she has been confirmed with the Myelodysplastic Syndrome.  She was contacted by the Cancer clinic and they have asked her if she would participate in a relatively new drug trial.  It is a pill called Revlimid.  Apparently it works to slow down the progression of the disease and help prolong the life of the person taking it. It has some very serious side effects however so my mom is worried about taking it.
I am not going to lie, I am pretty much in denial, I refuse to even think of my mom passing away, I can't go there.

I have to really think about things next spring, do I want to go home and be with my mom for a longer time period?  I can drive there so I can bring the dogs, but I am not sure if that would be hard on my mom, having 2 more dogs in her small home, one being on the boisterous side.

Anyway, I am looking forward to seeing her when I fly home on the 29th

Sunday, December 7, 2014


Tate, Christmas 2007, our first year in Lethbridge, and the last year he would be "an only child "
For the last 4 hours or so I have been gathering Christmas boxes full of ornaments and decorations. I have put lights out on the deck, and done some decorating around the house.  It is time consuming and exhausting for me, ever year I say I am not doing it next year, I am not getting a real tree, rather just a tiny artificial one, but every year I do the same thing.  I don't understand why.  After Christmas I have to do it all in reverse.  I have no kids, no one visits, I don't entertain, Brad really doesn't care for Christmas as as he was never brought up to celebrate it or to expect anything for except perhaps a pair of socks. 

So why year after year do I do it?  It actually makes me sad.  Pulling out ornaments, remembering Christmas when I was young.  Pulling out the ornaments that have the dogs pictures in them.  This year will be excruciating, I can't even stand the thought that Tate won't be here, never mind finding his ornaments :( 

It makes me wish that I had found Brad earlier, that we had had kids, the kids would be grown now and bringing over grandchildren, how fun would that be? 

Anyway, just doing some reflecting.  Yes I understand Christmas is about more then the decorations and all the glitz and presents, I know it was the day of Jesus birth, so don't get into that with me. 

I am just trying to figure myself out, and why I even bother .

Tuesday, December 2, 2014


Mom and my niece Sherri
Mom had her bone marrow test done yesterday, now we wait to see what the results have to say, we are all praying it isn't leukemia :(

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Wnen It Rains It Pours

Mom and Bessie 2013
Yesterday my mom had a blood transfusion, her blood pressure has been dropping and dropping and they couldn't figure out why.  They had to do something and that was the transfusion.   
Now they want to follow up with a bone marrow sample which is quite painful, but may give more answers. They are throwing around the word myelodysdplasia, which means......
Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) is a term for a collection of diseases that involves the improper function of the bone marrow. It occurs when blood cells die in the marrow, resulting in anemia and other issues surrounding the blood. In many cases, people with MDS develop a form of leukemia

Read more :
The myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS, myelodysplasia) are a group of blood disorders associated with low blood counts. Normally, blood cells are produced by the bone marrow (the spongy area in the middle of bones) in a controlled fashion. In MDS, the bone marrow does not function effectively to produce one or more types of blood cells, including red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets.
Each type of blood cell performs a number of functions, including the following:
  • Red blood cells carry oxygen throughout the body
  • White blood cells help to protect the body from infection
  • Platelets helps blood to clot normally
In people with MDS, the bone marrow is unable to produce enough cells to keep up with the number of cells removed by the spleen, liver, and other organs. This leads to a reduced number of cells in the body, increasing the risk of bleeding, infection, and problems related to anemia. Anemia occurs when there is a reduced number of red blood cells, which can cause fatigue, shortness of breath, or heart failure.
MDS may occur on its own (called de novo MDS) or 1 to 15 years after being exposed to certain forms of chemotherapy or radiation (called treatment-related MDS). Most people (approximately 75 percent) are older than 60 years when they are diagnosed with MDS, although it can develop during childhood.

Some people with MDS have no symptoms, and are diagnosed after laboratory testing is done for another reason. Most people with MDS seek care due to symptoms of anemia, including fatigue, weakness, becoming tired quickly during activities, chest pain, dizziness, difficulty thinking clearly, or shortness of breath.
Less commonly, a person with MDS is diagnosed as a result of an infection, easy bruising, or bleeding. Symptoms such as fever and weight loss are uncommon early in the disease.

MDS is primarily diagnosed based upon laboratory testing, which includes the following:
  • A complete blood count indicates the number of red and white blood cells, and platelets
  • A blood smear involves examining a small sample of blood under a microscope to examine the number, size, shape, and type of blood cells
  • Cytogenetic analysis examines the blood or bone marrow cells for signs of genetic abnormalities in the chromosomes. Researchers have discovered that the genetic makeup of the cells can vary, which can affect how a particular patient responds to treatment. Interpretation of these studies is very complicated. In general, outcomes are better for patients with normal chromosomes and worse for patients with complex changes in their chromosomes. However, certain chromosomal changes are associated with even better outcomes that those seen with normal chromosomes. Examples of these good changes include loss of the Y chromosome or deletion of the long arm of chromosomes 5 or 20.
  • Bone marrow aspiration and biopsy is performed to remove a sample of bone marrow from inside of a bone (usually the hip bone) and examine it with a microscope to look for abnormal cells.

Patients with MDS have been classified into subgroups, based in large part upon the blood counts, the number of abnormal cells in the bone marrow, and the cytogenetic studies. This classification system is called the World Health Organization classification and criteria for the myelodysplastic syndromes. A person's subgroup may change over time, as the disease progresses.
Perhaps the most useful clinical classification systems for MDS are the original and revised International Prognostic Scoring Systems (IPSS and IPSS-R, respectively). These models were devised to consider variables such as the percentage of immature blood cells (blasts) in the bone marrow, the type of blood abnormality present, as well as studies of the genetic makeup of the abnormal cells. Based on these criteria, the original IPSS defines four risk groups: low, intermediate-1, intermediate-2, and high-risk groups. Similar information is used by the IPSS-R to define five risk groups: very low, low, intermediate, high, and very high risk groups.
Treatment recommendations are based upon the patient's original or revised IPSS risk group; a person with low risk type MDS may live for many years before needing treatment while a person with high-risk type MDS usually needs more immediate treatment, without which his/her life expectancy may not exceed one to two years


Other than blood or bone marrow transplantation, there is currently no cure for MDS, although a number of treatment options are available to control symptoms, prevent complications of MDS, and improve quality of life. Not all patients with MDS require immediate treatment. Immediate treatment is indicated for patients with symptoms related to MDS. Patients without symptoms are usually monitored closely for disease progression.
For patients with symptoms, our treatment approach is similar to that proposed by the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN). We choose a treatment based upon the patient's age, performance status (a measure of how well a patient can perform normal daily tasks), and disease characteristics such as the IPSS risk score.
Treatment options — Treatment options for patients with MDS typically fall into one of three categories:
  • Supportive care includes the use of antibiotics for infection and transfusions for low blood counts. Supportive care is an important part of the management of all patients with MDS.
  • High intensity treatment is more likely to be associated with “treatment-related mortality”, may require hospitalization, and includes combination chemotherapy with or without bone marrow transplantation. The trade-off for the higher risk associated with these therapies is a greater chance of effectiveness.
  • Low intensity treatment includes those treatments less likely to produce treatment-related mortality and those that do not require a person to remain in the hospital, and includes use of hematopoietic growth factors, low intensity chemotherapy, immunosuppressive treatments, or a thalidomide derivative.
Treatment recommendations — Our general approach to the treatment of MDS is as follows:
  • Patients with higher risk MDS (IPSS score greater than 1.5 or IPSS-R score greater than 4.5) who are young and otherwise healthy are generally treated with high intensity therapies (see 'High intensity treatments' below).
  • Patients with lower risk MDS (IPSS score less than 1.5 or IPSS-R score less than 3) are generally treated with low intensity therapy or supportive care alone (see 'Low intensity treatments' below).
  • Patients with intermediate risk MDS (IPSS-R score between 3 and 4.5) can be treated with either approach.
  • Supportive care is an important adjunct to the management of all patients with MDS.
Supportive treatments — Supportive care includes treatment for the signs or symptoms of MDS, including a low white blood cell, platelet, or red blood cell count. Due to the advanced age of most patients with MDS and the chronic nature of the disease, supportive care is an important part of treatment for all patients. These treatments are not intended to cure the disease, although they can improve a person's quality of life and may prolong survival.
Blood transfusions — If a person's red blood cell or platelet count becomes dangerously low, it is possible to give donated blood. A person may donate whole blood or single components, such as red blood cells or platelets. All donated blood and blood products are tested for infectious diseases. Thus, the risk of developing an infection as a result of transfused blood products is now very low.
  • Red blood cells — Transfusions of red blood cells may be needed to treat signs or symptoms of anemia, including feeling tired or short of breath. If frequent or multiple transfusions of red blood cells are needed, iron overload may occur, which might lead to organ damage. Although controversial, some investigators believe that concern about iron overload should not occur until the patient has received approximately 30 units of packed red blood cells. A treatment called iron chelation may be recommended to remove this excessive iron from the body. Iron chelation treatments can be taken by mouth or as an injection under the skin or into a vein. These treatments have relatively few side effects, although it is unclear if their use prolongs life or improves its quality.
  • Platelets — Transfusions of platelets may be needed to prevent or treat bleeding problems caused by too few platelets.
Hematopoietic growth factors — Hematopoietic growth factors are proteins that promote the growth and development of blood cells. The use of growth factors may reduce a person's need for blood transfusions. However, many people with MDS do not respond normally to hematopoietic growth factors because of the bone marrow's defective production of blood cells.
  • Recombinant human granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF, Neupogen) or recombinant human granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) stimulate white blood cell (granulocyte) production, and may raise the patient's white blood cell count. Use of G-CSF alone is not recommended, except perhaps in the setting of severe infection.
  • Recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO, Procrit, Epogen) promotes the growth of red cells, and decreases the need for red cell transfusions in 20 percent of MDS patients.
Usually, EPO is given alone initially. However, both growth factors are given as combination therapy in some settings.
Low intensity chemotherapy — Chemotherapy medications in MDS aim to change bone marrow cells to develop more normally, allowing for improved production of red cells, white cells, and platelets. Low doses of a single chemotherapy drug may be recommended for people with lower risk MDS or for people with intermediate or high IPSS scores who cannot tolerate high intensity chemotherapy or bone marrow transplantation.
  • Azacitidine — Azacitidine (Vidaza) may increase survival and improve quality of life when compared with supportive treatments alone. Azacitidine is often given to patients with higher risk MDS. While a trial randomizing such patients to “best supportive care” (principally transfusions) or azacitidine found that survival was longer in the azacitidine group, the median improvement was only about six to nine months.
  • Decitabine — Decitabine (Dacogen) is similar to azacitidine and appears to increase rates of complete remission. Complete remission means that there are no detectable blasts in the blood or bone marrow and that the bone marrow is functioning normally.
  • Lenalidomide — Lenalidomide, a thalidomide-like drug, is particularly effective for people with anemia and lower risk MDS with abnormalities of chromosome 5 (called the 5q minus syndrome). Such patients may no longer require red blood cell transfusions after treatment with this agent.
Immunosuppressive drugs — In some patients with MDS, the immune system causes the bone marrow to slow production of blood cells. This may be especially true in people with a reduced number of cells in the bone marrow (called marrow hypoplasia).
Some of these patients, particularly those who are younger, with early stage disease and a reduced cell content of the bone marrow, respond to immunosuppressive therapies, which counter this immune attack on the bone marrow, with a resulting increased effective blood cell production. Use of an immunosuppressive therapy may allow between 50 to 60 percent of people who have the HLA DR2 tissue type to discontinue red blood cell transfusions.
Examples of immunosuppressive therapies include antithymocyte globulin (ATG) and cyclosporine. ATG is usually given into a vein once per day for four days while cyclosporine is usually taken by mouth twice per day for as long as it is effective.
Most everyone who is treated with ATG develops serum sickness, which causes hives, swelling, and fever. This reaction can be minimized by giving steroid treatment along with the ATG.
High intensity chemotherapy — Patients with intermediate or high risk type MDS may be treated with a chemotherapy regimen similar to that used for treatment of acute myeloid leukemia. In this group, chemotherapy is used to destroy abnormal cells or prevent them from growing. However, this treatment is only recommended if the person is relatively young .
High intensity chemotherapy is not generally recommended for people with a poor performance status, particularly if they are older than 65, or patients age >75. In this group, the expected benefit (prolonged survival) may not be worth the anticipated discomfort, hospitalization, or risk of dying from the toxicity of chemotherapy. The exception would be if the patient were placed on a trial of an investigational therapy with benefits that might plausibly justify the risk.
In some patients, supportive care can provide benefits that are equal to standard chemotherapy, with a lower risk of complications or toxicity. It should be stressed, however, that neither alternative is satisfactory prompting interest in clinical trials, many of which are ongoing. Some people do better with an approach that treats MDS-related problems, such as infection or anemia, as they occur, rather than trying to cure the disease. Transfusions and antibiotics can be given as needed in place of more aggressive forms of therapy.
Blood and bone marrow transplantation — Bone marrow transplantation (also called hematopoietic stem cell transplantation) is the only known treatment for MDS that has the potential to induce long-term remission or cure. However, transplantation involves the use of high intensity chemotherapy, sometimes with whole body radiation, to eliminate all dividing cells in the bone marrow. Unfortunately, the risks of treatment may be greater than the benefits in some situations.
In the past, patients over age 50 were not considered for bone marrow transplantation, mostly due to the risk of transplant-related complications. Improvements have allowed the upper age limit for such transplantation to expand to people age 65 or more. However, approximately 75 percent of patients with MDS are older than 60 at diagnosis, so conventional transplantation can only be offered to a minority of individuals.

For treatment of MDS, the optimal source of stem cells is a brother or sister with a similar genetic makeup (ie, a matched related donor). In general, parents, children, and relatives are not suitable donors, since they do not share the same parents and therefore do not have the same genetic material. Improvements in the ability to match unrelated donors has improved over the years and allowed for the transplantation of persons without a matched related donor. A donor's blood (peripheral blood stem cells) has largely replaced bone marrow the source of stem cells.
Use of reduced intensity chemotherapy treatment before transplantation may allow some patients with MDS, who would not otherwise be eligible, to undergo transplantation with a lower incidence of transplant-related complications. Reduced intensity regimens use less intensive chemotherapy with low dose or no radiation before transplantation with matched stem cells.
Transplantation is recommended for people with higher risk MDS who are under the age of 60 and who have a tissue-matched sibling donor, but not for people with lower risk disease. Although there is a significant chance of cure after bone marrow transplantation in low risk patients (approximately 60 percent), transplant-related deaths and the relapse rate at five years are also high (as high as 40 percent)

For people who are diagnosed with MDS, the average length of survival depends upon the IPSS or IPSS-R risk category, presence of underlying medical problems, and age. It is important to remember that these numbers represent averages, and do not necessarily predict what will happen in your situation. There is considerable variation from patient to patient, especially in the low-risk group.

We are quite worried as you can imagine,  I guess there is nothing for us to do but wait for the bone marrow test.
Myelodysplasia is a collection of conditions that result when bone marrow cells produce damaged cells that don't mature properly. This can lead to low numbers of red or white blood cells and platelets

Read more :
Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) is a term for a collection of diseases that involves the improper function of the bone marrow. It occurs when blood cells die in the marrow, resulting in anemia and other issues surrounding the blood. In many cases, people with MDS develop a form of leukemia

Read more :
Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) is a term for a collection of diseases that involves the improper function of the bone marrow. It occurs when blood cells die in the marrow, resulting in anemia and other issues surrounding the blood. In many cases, people with MDS develop a form of leukemia

Read more :

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Catching Up

Lync and his tongue lol, taken by Wendy Devent
Going to do a quick catch up post from the Lethbridge Dog show.

I showed Lync all 3 days in the 12-18 month class, as well as the All Breed Sweepstakes.  I love the 12-18 month class!  When I was showing Drake and Tate they didn't have it, when the dog turned one year old you were in Open, so unfair!  Sometimes you were competing again 3 and 4 year olds.  At the Lethbridge show there were 2 dogs in the Open class , one was 4 years old and the other about 2.5, big difference in body, coat and maturity.

On Day 1 Lync won Winners Male over the 1 Open dog giving him 1 point.
Day 2 he won Reserve Male over 1 Open Dog, ( the same one that beat him at Spruce Meadows in August took Winners ) and 1 Junior Puppy, giving him 2 points, he also competed in the Sweepstakes and in a class of 4 he took 2nd.  The Cocker  Spaniel that beat him went on to win Best In Sweepstakes.  There was a Xolo in his class that had been winning Group placements both days, and he took 4th in the class, so I was very thrilled with Lync's 2nd place, plus we won $10.00 !
On Day 3 the dog that took Winners the day before finished his Championship so they nicely moved up to Specials, Lync won Winners Male again over the Open Dog and the Junior Puppy giving him 2 points, had he gone Best of Winners he would have finished his Championship, but that wasn't in the cards.  No worries, now I get to show him again :)
My plan is to let him grow up for a couple of years before specialing him, work on his obedience and field stuff.
There is a show in Calgary I might enter, it is at the end of January so we will see, not to sure I want to drive in the winter anymore.

Also on Saturday at the show I competed in the team obedience event with Kort, so fun!! We hadn't practiced at all so we were just winging it, the audience loved it, the judges loved it and we all loved it, including Kort! he was so happy in the ring, I will do this again for sure!
We did Scenthurdle that night as well,  I am not going to talk too much about it, other then to say Kort told me it was now time for him to retire.

The weekend was full of emotion for me, Tate was gone, last year he was there with me, Kort had to retire.  Life is hard sometimes, but the good balances it out.  A year ago I didn't have Lync, I love him to death and am so grateful to have him in my life.

Friday, November 21, 2014

New Look

Tate in Nicholas Sheran Park,  a week after we moved to Lethbridge
Yesterday I changed the header photo for my blog.  I cried my way through the entire process of making it, taking down the other one with Tate on it, and putting up the one you see now.

I did it for a couple of reasons,
1) it was too hard every time I went to my blog to see Tate's picture and read Two Collies :(  it hurt my heart as it wasn't true, I don't have two Collies anymore, and
2) Lync was a baby of only 4 months in the picture, I figured he needed a grown up picture.

When I started this blog back in 2007, Tate was my only dog and we had just moved here.  I had no friends, no family here, just Tate and Brad.  I thought the blog would help with my loneliness.  Shortly after starting the blog I got a job with Paws On The Run and put my name in for another Collie puppy, which of course became Kort.

It's hard for me to believe that I have been in Lethbridge for 7 years!!  Wow, just wow!   I consider Lethbridge home now, I have a ton of friends, and wouldn't change a thing, except have my mom move out here :)

Thursday, November 20, 2014

One Year

It's one year today that my van slid on black ice and I crashed into the cement barrier on the road. You know the rest of the story. 
I am grateful for many things today, happy to be here, for my dogs sake and Brad's.  I don't think Brad would have survived if I had died, I don't know what would have happened to my dogs, especially Tate.  I am glad I am here, that I was here to help Tate cross over to the Bridge, that I am here for Kort who loves his momma so much,  and that I now have Lync in my life, he keeps me going when I have bad days, he makes me laugh.
I am glad I am here for my eldest niece's Wedding Day which is coming up fast, December 31st 2014.  I am grateful to be here for my sister Joanne who's Cancer journey is worsening,  she will need us all , sooner then later I'm afraid, and for my mom, who is beyond scared and so very sad. I will be here for it all, good and bad.
Today I celebrate life and am grateful for it.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Have you ever been hit by a truck twice in one week??

I try hard to be more positive, everyday I try to think of something to be grateful for.  This week however has been like a truck has ran over me, then backed up and run over me again :(

3 days ago my sister Joanne called to say they found more Cancer,  this time in her lungs.  She had just finished with her second round of chemo about 3 months ago.  I am so numb, I won't let myself really think about it, or what it means that it is now in her lungs. 

She started chemo again yesterday, this time pills.  She takes them for 2 weeks, then gets a week off and her Dr will evaluate her and decide the next step.  I asked her if she had considered not doing the chemo, it is so hard on her, her mouth gets full of sores,  I just can't imagine.  She said she is just happy they are still offering her treatment, she knows there will be a day that they will say they can do no more.  This is so unfair,  I am really having a hard time believing in God at the moment,  what God allows so much suffering?

I am terrified what this is doing to my mom.  I called her today, she wants to know why she can't die instead of Joanne, it hurts so bad to hear the despair in her voice.

I will be home on December 29th for my nieces Wedding.  I hope to whisk Joanne away with my sister Debra and do something, just us 3 sisters if we can.

I am also contemplating moving back home for awhile.  If things get worse I may, just so my mom isn't alone.  I want to have more time with Joanne,  this so just all so hard.

There is one exciting thing happening, Joanne & Jane have decided to marry!  It will be May 22 2015, I am so thrilled for her and that she found the courage to do this, that is another story, my mom is a bit difficult you might say, lol  This is giving Joanne something to look forward to and to stay strong for,  I hope it works  <3 p="">
Joanne and Jane on their trip to Jamaica

Monday, November 3, 2014

Smile Because It Happened


Ch Mariner Storm Chaser TD RE AGI ADC CGN TT HIC VCX St John Ambulance Therapy Dog

April 11 2002 ~ November 3 2014 

When my legs grew too weak to carry me , 
And my tired eyes could no longer see,
When it pained me to struggle for each new breath,
When my heart beat weaker, and I drew closer to death,
You did me the kindness of letting me go
You didn't make me hang on when I was suffering so
I promise I don't think that you loved me any less,
And I love you all the more for your selfishness
You freed my spirit from it's body so wracked with pain,
And let me run the fields of Heaven, where I'm sure we'll meet again.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Tough Week

My goodness this week has been very difficult.  We have lost 3 really great dogs, only 1 of which I knew personally , but the other 2 belonged to people who are important to me, therefore I hurt for them.

Of course it hits home a bit more strongly for me right now as I myself will be facing that dreaded decision in the next while.

On Friday Judi lost her German Shepherd Token, she was very special to Judi and I know it is difficult for her, Amanda sent her the following picture and message which I think is just beautiful.

Today we lost 2 special dogs, one belonging to my dear friend Diana in California. He had been sick for sometime now but it still doesn't make loosing him any easier, Good bye sweet Sea B

Ch Entais Seabiscuit
Lastly Kerry died today, he and his brother Jack had a special place in my heart.  They came to the daycare where I worked, you may recall I posted about Jack's passing a couple of years ago, well today it was Kerry's time to cross the bridge and see his brother again.   I did go to the daycare a few times to visit with Kerry after I stopped working there, but I hadn't seen him in a few months, I wish I had, I truly loved him.  Here is a picture of him on his 15th Birthday taken by the girls at the daycare in March, Good bye Kerry, say hi to Jack for me ok

I leave you all with the wise words of Dr Seuss.......

Don't cry because it's over,
Smile because it happened. 

Monday, October 20, 2014

Tate Tate Tate

Tate on his 12th Birthday, April 11 2014
 Stubborn old fool ! Tate is the most independent dog I have ever owned, nothing wrong with that until you get to be 12.5 years old though!

He insists on sleeping downstairs, which means going down 2 flights of 6 stairs, he has hardly any co ordination in his back legs anymore, so you can imagine how he does this!  I just don't watch, it's too scary.  If  I "make" him stay upstairs he just paces and paces and paces, so he gets his own way.
What goes down must come up however, this takes anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes, he circles, tries a stair, goes back down, circles, tries a stair and goes back down, over and over until he gets it just right.  Why don't I help him you ask?  Well because he is a stubborn, independent old dog of 12 .5 years old lol!  He WILL NOT allow any help, if I try to help he bucks, backs up, spins or just generally panics, so again, I walk away and don't look, he eventually figures it out.

Another problem with this is he either has to go down 6 stairs, or come up 6 stairs to get to the door, sometimes if it takes too long he just does his business on whatever floor he is on, this morning he peed downstairs, brat.  I bought a steam cleaner this year as this had started at the beginning of the year.  He was pooping in the house, the peeing is new. It breaks my heart, really, everytime it happens I cry,  but I comfort myself thinking he probably doesn't know, or remember he has done it.  I don't want any stress in his life and he has always been a clean dog, never messing in the house, even as a puppy .

I have also added rug to our stairs just for him, he likes it !  Well at least I think he likes it :)

Tate continues to live in the present as only dogs can do.  He is eating well, enjoys his short walks, still wags his tail at me, which I watch for.  I hate knowing that there will be another seizure eventually, they are so hard to watch.  Hopefully he will be with me for a long time yet.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014


I feel like screaming, every second of everyday!   I have been fighting this for at least 2 months, told my Dr about it last month and I am waiting to see another Dr/Phycologist at the end of this month.  

I call it anxiety, but I don't know if that's what it is, it is all consuming and upseting.  I don't even know how to describe what it feels like.  It's a gnawing below my breastbone, like you feel when you are scared.  It's like I am on edge , on constant alert.
I want to cry it is so bad.  For the most part I fight it, I occupy my mind so I have no time to think  about it, I walk, alot, like all the time, if I am not walking I am reading, driving, singing, whatever it takes to stop it.  
Today I have decided to write about it while it is happening.  I just soaked in the tub for an hour, I seemed ok, then bamn it hits me when I get out.  I really can't take much more of it, I am afraid I'll go crazy.
I am so good at putting on a happy face,   but sometimes I can't.  So my friends that are reading this, sometimes I just can't do stuff, I want to , but I can't , be patient, I'm working on it.

Speaking of working on it.  I have been researching Essential Oils to use on myself and the dogs.  I have just started with wintergreen and lemongrass for Kort, I have Frankincense coming for Tate when he has his seizures, and lavender for myself for anxiety and insomnia.  If I notice they help I am going to look into selling them myself, I hope they help.

Well that's it, another installment in the secret life of Jolene :)

Monday, October 6, 2014


Another from Tate's 12th Birthday, April 11 2014

A day after Tate's seizure and he is doing well.  Yesterday was spent sleeping except for coming up to eat and me making him go outside to go to the bathroom.

Today as I was making his breakfast I had decided that if he continued to not participate in the household goings on that I would start getting ready for "the decision" .  With tears running down my cheeks  I was putting things together in my mind.  I looked down to my right and guess who was standing there? yup, The Tater Dog !   He had come upstairs and was waiting for his breakfast,  thank you Tate for sparing me my thoughts . I called my vet but she is away for a few days, I wanted to tell her about Tate's plugged nose during his seizure, and to ask about his Valium.  The vet that was there called me back and assured me I could up the Valium with Tate during his seizures.  We were being conservative because of his mutant/mutant MDR status.  

Tomorrow Tate is officially 12 and a half,  realistically I doubt I will have him past 13 , so 6 months. It is hard to put into words how I feel knowing he has 6 months or less.  I could be wrong, Collies have lived past 13 years, but not many, so everyday is a special one, for Tate I don't take any of them for granted,  Tate is hugged and kissed and told he is loved every single day, actually many times a day,  he will know nothing but love until it is his time.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Number 4

Tate's 12th Birthday, April 11 2014, taken by Amanda
At 4 am this morning Tate had his 4th seizure, 78 days after the last one.  This one was brutal, I held him in my lap while he yelped for over an hour , I was calm, calmer then all the others.  I told myself it wasn't pain, at least this is what everyone has told me.

He lost bladder control for the first time and peed twice, I was sitting in it, with him in my lap, his head held tightly against my chest while I told him it was ok and he was safe, his momma was with him.  After the first hour and he wasn't stopping I gave him another half of a valium, right or wrong I didn't care, we were both exhausted.  He would also stand up during all this, well, "attempt" to stand up, I had to support his back end totally as he had no control of it.

I didn't like the sound of his breathing, it was like he had a plugged nose.  It is gone today but I need to ask my vet about it, I hope it wasn't fluid around his heart.

Today  he is tired, sleeping mostly but has been able to go up and down the stairs to go outside and to eat.

Fingers crossed for another 78 days seizure free, or longer.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014


I love September, it is my favourite month of the year.  The weather is cooler, but not cold.  There is a crispness in the morning that I love.  The colours are breathtaking.  I wish it could stay September.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Happy Birthday !!

Brad and I out at supper tonight ♥
Happy Birthday to me!!

Today I turned 54, it was one of the best Birthdays I've had in a while !  Last year I spent it at the Vets office with Tate, he became very ill and we were all very worried, but here we are a year later and he is still kicking!  
For the first time in a long time Brad wasn't working either, that also made it a better day, less lonely.  Although my wonderful sister Debra drove up here all the way from Sherwood Park last year to surprise me, she arrived at midnight!  She knew I was alone and sad over Tate so she came to cheer me up!

Sibley is here , a Flatcoated Retriever puppy from Lync's breeder, she has been loads of fun and Lync has really enjoyed having another Flatcoat to play with.  She goes home tomorrow and we will miss her.
Brad and I went out for supper tonight,  we celebrated both of our Birthdays.  His was on the 15th but he was working.

My Birthdays do make me sad at times however, remembering past Birthdays, so many friends and relatives that I used to celebrate with have passed away now.  One Birthday in particular was very very sad, my cousin Judy passed away.  She was only 42,  it was horrible, she had a brain aneurism.  I hope she is watching and smiling down on me this year, I miss her so much.

Well the day is over and so is my Birthday , almost :)   Here's to a great year full of health and happiness.

Monday, September 15, 2014

This and That

Kort and Lync on our walk today
I keep starting and stopping writing a new post, frustrating when I get like this.  It's hard to explain, but I am going through a feeling of unrest, unsettled, just not quite right.  I fight it as best I can, by walking, keeping busy with the dogs and stuff like that.

I am almost positive I will not be going back to work, too many things going on with me,  for some reason I feel like I always need to defend myself to people because I am not working, it bothers me.  I shouldn't have to feel that way, why do people think I need to work?  Most days I can barely get out of bed, mornings are so incredibly bad.  It sucks.  It takes me forever to get moving properly.  I am coming up on a year that I have been off work, it has been difficult financially but we are making it work.  I actually get major anxiety even thinking about working.  I am not writing this to justify myself,  just some thoughts that were going through my head.

I had Kort's thyroid checked last week and it came back as normal which was great.  So now comes the hard part of trying to get weight off of him, he weighs 78 pounds, last year at this time he was about 55 pounds.  He must get this weight off, I can see he is uncomfortable and he can't jump properly in Scenthurdle.  That is his only activity right now and I want him to continue to be able to jump, but he won't be unless he looses weight.  He has spondylosis which is another reason why I must get the weight off of him.  I am going to try to continue feeding him raw, just less portions.  My vet say not to ever drop below 8 oz of food at each meal, if you do it starts doing weird things to the body.
I have increased his exercise from what we were doing, I am now including Coulee walks everyday, there are lots of hills to climb so that is good exercise for both of us! And it helps me mentally too.

Tate is doing amazing!  He is in wonderful shape, has a nice weight.  He is still climbing up and down the stairs by himself, at times he is a bit unsteady but he won't let me help him so I just let him figure it out.  He hasn't had a seizure since July 18th whoo hoo!  I didn't think he would make it through the summer, now I am thinking he will even see his 13th Birthday which is in April.  I take him on our walk at night and he loves it, he trucks along pretty quickly on the first part but does slow down on the last part, it is only about a half hour walk so as to not overdo it.  Kort and Lync have already had a longer walk during the day so I don't worry about them having to slow down for Tate.

Lync is awesome, just so much fun!  Tonight I am bringing him to Scenthurdle practice in Kort's place.  I think he will enjoy this sport and I think he will do great at it too!

That's about all that's been happening around here, hopefully I will post again sooner rather then later :)

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

A Tragically long long long post about the National :)

Lync shows off his ribbons, sadly there wasn't a rosette for his 1st place win

 My first Flatcoat National is now over and I have so much to report.....

Day 1 , first up was the National Sweepstakes, it was judged by Dinah Baggentos, a breeder of Flatcoats.  There were 3 dogs in Lync's 12-18 month class and he placed 2nd.

Later the same day was the judging at the all breed, this was a Booster for Flatcoats and it was wonderful to see 50 Flatcoats entered from all over!  The judge was Doug Windsor, also a breeder judge.  He gave Lync 1st in the class, there were 2 of us entered, the other dog was the one that had beaten Lync in the morning in the Sweepstakes.  Lync was acting up in the Winners Dog judging, he even laid down on the ground at one point and wouldn't stand still, he kept jumping up on me, silly boy!

Day 2, this day did not start out so well!   I was unpacking and arranging my tent, looked over and saw Flatcoats in the ring!  I quickly picked up my catologue and saw that they had started judging at 9 am, not 9:45 like I thought, eek!  I grabbed Lync and ran.  When I got there I asked if I had missed Lync's judging, the judge was wonderful, he said " you are lucky, I was just about to do Winners Male, come on in!  He let me bring Lync in, we were the only 12-18 mo dog however.  I had no bait & still had on my sweatshirt over my skirt!  Then it was time for Winners, I asked people outside the ring for bait and got some , Lync showed beautifully, what a good boy he is and I am very thankful I have never done this with my collies, I never would have been able to just run to the ring as I would have needed to do hours of grooming!

At 1 in the afternoon our National began!   100 gorgeous Flatcoats were entered!!
There were 6 dogs in Lync's 12-18 month class.  Lync placed 4th.  The judge had him in 3rd, then gaited us around again and moved Lync's litter brother up to 2nd place, which bumped us back to 4th, still a fantastic placement in a National!!

The judge liked Lync, I watched as he looked at him, then back to another dog, then back to Lync, then to another dog, comparing them.  He asked me how old Lync was, I told him he just turned a year. He looks it.  He is going through a bit of a geeky stage right now, his legs are long, he is thin, and loosing coat, but he is a showman and the structure is there,  however on this day the others were more put together, including his brother Higgs.  The funny thing is that Higgs was the geeky one at the American National, now it's Lync's turn !  I am not worried, I see the potential, Lync is going to be awesome!

That night we had the National barbeque and silent auction.  I bid and won a couple of Flatcoat books.  The judge spoke too and gave his thoughts on what he saw that day.
The Flatcoat people were so friendly,  many coming over to say hi, introduce themselves, and ask about Lync.  I felt very welcome and not out of my element at all.

The day was tough,  it poured rain, buckets of rain!  When I was showing it was baking hot, but most of the Specialty was rained upon.  It made take down difficult as everything was soaking wet, I didn't want to pack all this wet gear in my van!  We all ended up taking the dogs down to the lake for a swim while there was a rain break, hoping it would all dry, most of it did.
I was very tired by the end of the night.

Day 3, today was the Working Certificate tests!!! My first Flatcoat, my first WC test and I wasn't at all nervous!  I was very confident in Lync.
It was so much fun to learn the ins and outs of these tests.
Lync was about the 5th dog to run.  Land retrieves were first.  1 mark was 50 yards away to our left and the other was 75 yards away straight ahead.  The gunners do not yell "hey hey hey" like we do in training, rather they fire off a shot into the air with a gun and it is loud!  The duck was then thrown by the gunner into some light cover.
The 50 yard mark was first.  Lync shot off, found his duck and ran back, came over the line and dropped his duck, yikes! He should be delivering to hand, which he does in training,  I did some encouraging and he picked it back up and brought it to me.  The 75 yard mark was next, off  Lync ran, sniffed around a bit , found his duck, and as he crossed the line he spotted Liz and Larkin coming down the hill,  I think he was going to go show Liz his duck but I manged to retrieve it from his mouth before that happened, success on land!

Area of the first land retrieves, you can see the gunner and the first mark to the left and the 2 judges sitting to the right, if you look you can see the 2nd gunner way off in front of the judges
After all the dogs ran their land marks we all drove over to the water area.  The pond was a beautiful nice small pond, not too much in the way of cover except this big ass log sticking out of the water.
We climbed down a small embankment to the shore to send our dogs.  The first mark was 60 yards I believe, off Lync went without hesitation, found his duck and turned to return to me but then veered off to his right even though I whistled and called out to him, there was no stopping him, he was going to check out that damn log!
I am serious when I say it was big, he gets to it and all I can think of is he is going to let go of his duck and then we are screwed, I was wrong, he climbs up on the log and crawls over it , never letting go of his duck omg!! he then heads straight for shore and returns to me, shore running is to be discouraged and is not tolerated in the higher levels, he brings his duck and drops it yet again, this time he feels it is necessary to dry it off by licking it, I had to repeatedly tell him to fetch, which he did, bringing me the duck but it slipped from my hands, I got him to pick it up again thankfully.

Mark 2 is 40 yards away,  something else new to us both, a boat in the water with the gunner sitting in it and throwing the marks from there.   Lync heads out, briefly looks at the boat, retrieves his duck then swims off to his left into the bull rushes and out of sight, geez Louise dog!  Moments later he comes out from the cover up the road and the judges encourage me to call him, so I yell out, "Lync, come to momma!!"  hahaha, I was having fun :)  he brought me his duck to hand, what a feeling,  my first retriever I have trained has gotten his WC, in his first trial,  just 1 week after turning a year old,  I was so proud!

The club then put on a lunch of hotdogs, chips, & watermelon, we all sat around and talked before it was time for the ribbons to be presented.  My smile was soooooo big when they called out Lync's name, followed by whoops and applause by all the exhibitors,  I am still thrilled by this accomplishment.

Area where we all stopped for lunch and the ribbon presentation

After an hour it was time for the 2nd Trial, if Lync had been ready he could have moved up to do his WCI, but there was no way!, so we did the WC again, why not, it was paid for, it was good practice , and it was fun!!!

I am glad I did do it, it was much tougher then the morning trial.  The land test area was not nicely mowed like the first, it was a totally natural environment of tall grass, shrubs,  and uneven terrain.  The first mark was 75 yards and went down a hill, the dog really had to search the area for their mark.  Also the WCI and WCX tests were there in the morning so there was duck scent there from the other ducks, even though we weren't in the exact spot.

It is my turn to step into the blind and Lync is wired, he was pulling me like an idiot, there is a hill, there is a rock, Lync pulls, my foot catches the rock, down I go with an earth shattering face plant!  So hard my hat flys off my head, bad boy Lync!  I recover, and carry on to the blind.

Lync is booting it down the hill to the first mark, he had to search, took him a few minutes but he found his duck and returned quickly but dropped it about 5 feet from me.  He had brought it over the line thank goodness, if he hadn't that is a fail.  I was still trying to get him to pick it up and deliver it to hand but there was no way, the judges finally just told me to pick it up.  In WC this is still a pass as it was over the line.  The 2nd retrieve was 50 yards and pretty much a copy of the first with Lync dropping his bird and refusing to pick it up, ugh, must fix that for sure!

On to water, there were just 3 of us!  Lync, Larkin and Blue.  Lync was second to go this time.  I had Darren walk Lync down the embankment for me,  I didn't want a face plant repeat in the water.

The 1st mark, which was 40 yards,  is the one thrown by the gunner in the boat, it is close to the bull rushes so not in the open,  the water is full of weeds.  Lync had no trouble at all,  finds his duck and swims back but heads to shore off to my left, no excuses this time, just inexperience, but it must be fixed, he needs to return to me.  He has never never done this before.  The only thing I can think of is the gallery was over there, is it possible he was heading toward them?  I am not sure, but he needs to look for ME and return straight to me!
Moving on to the 2nd mark which is 60 yards, Lync gets it, swims mostly to me in the water, veers over to his left, finds a bit of shore, runs it, back into the water, then back to the shore to drop his duck.  This time it is not even close to being over the line, I am trying everything I can think of to get him to bring me that damn duck.  He would lick it, look at me, go back, lick it some more , pick it up, drop it, I was just beginning to think it was a fail when the dog that was due to run after us got away from his handler and ran over to us, Lync ran after him but came immediately when I called him, he has the best recall!  I just ignored the other dog and his handler catching him and yelled to Lync, "fetch!!", he runs over picks up the bird brings it near me and I scoop it out of his mouth , the judges and gallery shout with joy hahaha! true story! 
I am thinking that Lync , being the greedy guts that he is, was scared the other dog might steal his bird, that's why he picked it up :)

Area of the 2nd trial water retrieves, we started in behind that truck,  the 2nd mark was in the area where you see the reeds
 Anyway, I was thrilled to death with 2 passes!!!  I am looking forward to training for my WCI which I will try for next year at some point.  First we need to fix the dropping of the bird,  the not returning to me when in water, and the biggest thing is the next level is all off leash.  Lync needs to walk beside me at heel, sit in the blind quietly, wait for the release from me before going out to retrieve and he needs to do a land honour of the dog after us going out to retrieve his first duck.  Lots and lots of work but I can't wait to get started!

If you have read to here thank you!!  I know this was the longest post I have ever ever written , but I wanted to remember everything single thing so needed to write it down.

Lync with his WC ribbon !!!!!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Ready for the National!

Tomorrow is the big day, first leg of my journey to the Canadian Flatcoat National in Kamloops BC.

I am very excited and I hope to finally meet the people I have been Facebook friends with but never met .  I will be driving half way tomorrow and staying overnight in Golden BC.  I think for myself, as well as the dogs, it was the best decision.  I might do the same thing on our return trip but will wait to see how I feel tomorrow, whether I think I could have actually made the trip in one day.  Besides I have never liked to be rushed, I want to enjoy myself, see some scenery as I have never traveled this way before!

Going to dog shows is what keeps me sane, having them to look forward to seems to keep my depression at bay. 
I am mostly packed, rearranged my van yet again, I have even packed some things already.  Today I need to go get a few snacks for the trip and the hotel room, cookies, liquorice, cheese, and coolers or wine of course !

I am grateful to have all 3 dogs to bring with me, I love having them around, Tate did so well at on our last trip that I am anticipating no trouble this time either.
Lync will get his bath & groom tonight .

I am bringing my computer with me this time so expect lots of posts and updates!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Happy Birthday Lync!

I can't believe Lync is a year old today!! Wow has this year flown by.  I bought him a waterproof collar as the cloth ones can get really smelly when they constantly get wet and then dry on the dog. I think he looks smashing in orange :)

So Handsome !

Kort helps Lync celebrate :)

Saturday, August 23, 2014

4 more sleeps!

Lync retrieves a bumper

 Not much time for blogging lately.  Between driving up to Calgary for Lync's eye and resulting care, plus training for his WC test I haven't been doing much else. 

It has been a very long time since I have done a dog sport that has motivated me so much.  I get up early every weekend to drive a half hour to and hour to a lake to pracitse, it is awesome!  I love it!

I am leaving Wednesday morning and driving half way to Kamloops where I will relax and spend the night.  The next morning I will drive the rest of the way , get to my hotel, unpack and head over to the show site to set up.  That evening is the National's meet and greet so I am looking forward to that. 

On Friday the All Breed Dog Show starts which Lync is entered in, it is also a Booster show for Flatcoats judged by a breeder judge, there are 50 Flatcoats entered!  In the afternoon is the Flatcoat National's Juvenile Sweepstakes.

Saturday will be crazy busy for me . Lync shows in the All Breed in the morning, then the National starts at 1.  I am showing Lync in his class as well as in the Brood Bitch class with his mom and litterbrother Higgs. Judy has asked me to show either Kona or Maize in the National Specials class, I am excited to do that!. Then it is the All Breed Puppy Sweepstakes.  That night is the National's Barbecue as well as the judges comments.

Sunday is the WC test!  Due to a small entry they are doing both tests on the same day, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. 

Right now I have been busy deciding what to wear to show, getting it ironed, and today I made Tate's food as well as the veggie mix the dogs eat.  I still need to get Lync's treats for the ring as well as some premade Raw food. 
On Tuesday night I will bath and groom Lync,  I am really getting excited, can't wait!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


In light of Robin Williams suicide I thought this would be a perfect time to do a post on Depression.

Depression is a nasty sneaky disease, I hate it.  I have dealt with depression since my 20's , although I had no idea.   I just thought I was a thinker, a worrier, and that I  just took life too seriously.   As I aged , it got worse, sad thoughts, dark thoughts, swirling in my head.  Still never thinking depression.  I can see it now , clear as day, but I couldn't see it then.

I met Brad when I was 33,  Brad was diagnosed in 2006 with Bi Polar disorder, so that was 13 years we were together that I had no idea what was wrong with him.  The episodes of craziness & depression, it was overwhelming for me but I never had time to think about myself, I was too busy worrying about Brad.
I remember going to work, getting there, and I would burst into tears as I just didn't want to go through the day, I wanted to be home, sleeping, just wanting to be alone, going to work meant putting on my happy face and pretending all was well with the world, dealing with customers, it was exhausting!

During this time my dad's Parkinson's became worse and my mom had to put him into care at one of the hospitals.  I was beyond sad, I couldn't bare thinking of my dad in there, away from his family, feeling abandoned, it was a very difficult time for me.

We moved to Lethbridge in 2007, I had to leave my business, my friends, my family.  I was alone here except for Brad. During that time Brad had 2 episodes of depression himself that needed him to be hospitalized.  His last episode had him out of work for 15 months. I was the main money maker, even that wasn't enough, I had nothing but anxiety and worry for almost 2 years, building on top of my already existing depression. 
Also during my first couple of years here my sister was diagnosed with stage 4 cervical cancer, my dad died, and my mom had a stroke.  I also had a cousin die of a heart attack, he was only 49.
Brad returned to work in July 2013, some of the weight was finally lifted from my shoulders.  In August last year, I hit rock bottom, everything just caught up to me,  I couldn't function at work even without having many episodes of crying.  Thank goodness I worked with a great group of girls, they knew what I was going through and helped me as much as they could without judgement.

Then in November 2013 I had my car accident,  that was the last straw,  I was done, mentally and physically.   Not only am I still recovering physically but I am still trying to recover mentally.  I had absolutely no idea just how depressed I was until I was forced to stay home.  To this day I can't think about going to work,  I have many good days, but I still have just as many bad days.
I am slowly letting my friends know I suffer from depression, even though on the outside I look like a happy bubbly person, underneath there is still a black cloud lurking, making me sad , and sometimes not allowing me to go out of the house.  It is hard, people don't understand, they say, just get out of the house, you'll feel better, that might be, but you have to realize the effort I need to put forth just to get myself out of the house.  My dogs are a life saver,  walking them helps me like nothing else, I just go out, I don't need to talk, I just walk, thank God for my dogs ♥

I am not sure when or if I will make it back to work, I still have days when I just cant leave the house and I don't care what people think, I am finally going to look after me and focus on the fact that I have a disease and that disease is depression.  I will not be embarrassed by it anymore.   I will face it and I will deal with it in my own way,  with my Dr's help of course :)

So my advice to you is, never judge anyone, you really have no idea what is really going on in their minds and behind closed doors, be kind to people, as much as you can, your words can have a profound effect on their day. 

Friday, August 8, 2014

Spruce Meadows

Lync competing for Best of Breed on the first day, this judge was from Puerto Rico!
I haven't blogged in so long I don't even know where to start!!

I think first and foremost is the Spruce Meadows trip I made, I was gone for 5 days with all 3 dogs.  I had a wonderful benching spot and all the dogs were so well behaved it was awesome!!
This was mine and Lync's first time in the ring together, up until now I had either his breeder or a handler take him in. 

After setting up my tent on the Thursday I decided to stick around and enter the conformation Match that was being held.  I knew it would be a great opportunity for me to get a feel for Lync and he me, to see how he handled in the ring and if I could keep up with him.

He didn't disappoint me, he showed like a seasoned pro, I have not felt this way since I entered the show ring with Drake back in 1991, Drake walked into the ring for the first time, stood like a statue and showed his heart out.  I got that feeling again, the feeling of this one is going to be fun!!
We ended up taking 1st Place in the Sporting Group as well as Best Puppy!  Pretty Good for our first time in the ring.

The rest of the weekend was a dream, he won the points 3 out of the 4 days, Reserve on the day that he didn't get the points,  and Best of Winners on the last day.   He also went Best Puppy in Breed all 4 days.  The competition was great and I felt we held our own,  Liz said we got better each day.  I felt each day our confidence grew and Lync became more aware of what I was expecting of him.  The total points he got for the weekend was 5, so now Lync sits at 6, pretty good for only being in 2 shows I'd say!

Now we will look forward to showing in Kamloops at the end of August, we are in the All Breed as well as the Sweepstakes, and the Canadian Flatcoat National as well as their Sweepstakes.

Lync moving out in the Puppy Group on the 4th Day
 We have been out practicing for our WC but I am doubtful we will enter at the National, he still needs to pick up and carry a duck , we aren't quite there yet.  We have lots of time though!  I am in no rush.

Other then that Lync has 2 nights of Obedience classes a week,  he is doing fantastic!  We are outside for one of the classes which is great for teaching him to focus on me.

I also must comment on how well Tate did during our week in Calgary.  We stayed at a friends house and he was very comfortable, just found a spot to sleep and that's what he did, he ate his meals everyday and enjoyed wandering around Jan's huge yard,  it was wonderful to have him with me.  I know now he will be ok traveling to Kamloops as well.

My view on Jan's front porch each night, I would sit out on the swing and just enjoy the cool breeze, the dogs loved it too !
 Kort played Scenthurdle on the Saturday night in Calgary.  He was good for about 3 races then I could see him slowing down and his back toes were knocking the jumps.   In one of the last races of the night he ran out, took the first jump, stopped , turned and thought about coming back, being a Collie and wanting so bad to please me, he turned and finished the race.  Amanda and I knew he needed to be pulled right then so Bosley stepped in to finish while I took Kort back to his crate , put on his Back On Track jacket, and walked him around to cool him down.  I am very sad, I was hoping he could continue with Scenthurdle as he loves it so much, but I think he is telling me he is done, it is hard to believe that at 6 he is in so much pain :(
I think more xrays are in store for Kort as well as some bloodwork to test out his thyroid function,  but that's a whole other story and I have already written so much .

Kort catching some zzzzz's :)

Friday, July 25, 2014


♥ I think the photo says it all ♥

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Trainin the Triever :)

Lync at 11 months
 Today I am going to talk about the training of Lync.

I decided I would change my breed for a few reasons, one being I wanted a breed that was easier to care for grooming wise.  One that I didn't have to glue ears on for a year, but mostly one that wasn't so sensitive.  While I do really love my sweet sensitive Collies, they are not always the best breed for doing performance things with.
Collies are attentive, and want to please so bad that it actually stresses them out if they think they are doing something wrong.   It hurts to see a dog you love stressed because you have asked him to heel , or retrieve, or pay attention in a distractive environment.   Not all Collies are like this, Kort was extreme,  I had no trouble with my first Collie Ben, other then he was horribly afraid of floors, that meant only going to outdoor trials, and Drake was super, not afraid of anything.

I also wanted a dog that could put up with me and my loud voice!  If I raised my voice around Kort, he thought he had done something wrong, if I sighed , he thought he had done something wrong, poor guy.
On the other hand, I love to be silly.  I like to tease my dogs, talk in silly voices to them, and generally be an idiot.  I wanted a dog that was like that too, so I chose the Flatcoated retriever :)

Lync has been so much fun to train!  He wants to please me, but not to the point of stressing about it.  He is thrilled when I tell him he has done something right, but doesn't melt if I tell him he has done something wrong.  He just looks at me as if to say, whatever :)

I find him very very smart, he picks up on new things very fast!   Right now we are in 2  Obedience classes, one is geared to competitive obedience training, the other to having a nicely behaved pet.  I enjoy both classes and what they have to offer.
I find the competitive class a bit more challenging as Lync has to deal with more things that distract him.  Rundle is in the class, he LOVES Rundle!!! He also has to deal with Judy being in the class with Mazie, he not only loves Mazie, but he loves Judy as well.  Judy owns Lync's mom Kona and it was Judy that cared for Lync for a month after my car accident.
There is also another Bernese Mt Dog in the class, Lync is forever thinking it is Rundle.  So in that class I struggle quite a bit to hold his attention.

In the pet class, he is a bit calmer.  The first night he barked at all the dogs!  This was because he had never seen these dogs before, last night was our second class and after his first bit of excitement he remained calm for the rest of the night.  I enjoy that he will sit calmly at my side, or even lay down and just observe the other dogs while Amanda is giving us instruction.  Kort was a reactive dog, always barking , never relaxing, it became exhausting!

The one thing I am not used to in Lync is the social butterfly aspect of the retriever.  I still struggle to have him just walk along with me.  Last night we had to circle around the other dogs and handlers in the class, loose leash.  Lync was so distracted, it was like, omg dog, dog, oh look toy! , dog, oh toy! , look another dog, dog!!, bag on floor !! oh another dog! another toy, omg yippee!!  I had to laugh, I love his free spirit.
I vowed I would not take this stuff serious again.  Lync will get there eventually, he doesn't have to have a CD at 2 years of age, we will do it when he is ready.

I do want to put a UD on Lync, so at some point we will buckle down more, but when he is mentally ready to do that, for right now I am just enjoying the fact that I own a Flatcoated Retriever, I am having a blast, he is everything I thought he would be and more ♥

Lync at 11 months