Sunday, May 31, 2009

Loin of Lamb Chops with a Red Wine Sauce


4 loin of lamb chops 1 1/2 to 2 inches thick
2 Tb olive oil
2 - 3 minced and peeled shallots
1 - 1 1/2 Tb tomato paste
3/4 cup red wine
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 1/2 - 2 Ts fresh minced thyme and rosemary
1 Tb balsamic vinegar
2 Tb unsalted butter
Dash of Kosher salt and black pepper


1. Pat the lamb chops dry. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

2. Heat 1 Tb of olive oil over medium-high heat until melted. Use a heavy cast iron pan.

3. Put the 4 loin lamb chops in the pan and cook until browned and medium-rare.

4. Remove the chops place on plate and cover with tin foil.

5. In the pan, add the other 1 Tb of olive oil and cook the shallots.

6. Add the tomato paste and stir until it begins to brown. About 1 minute or less and then add the wine, thyme, rosemary and chicken broth. Cook for a few more minutes until it is thickened.

7. Add the vinegar and cook for 1-2 minutes.

8. Remove from stove top and add the butter and whisk. Add the salt and pepper. Drizzle on the chops and serve.

Serves two.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

A little Goosing

We have three geese. Mama Goose is nesting in a dog igloo. The other two that wander about and help guard the pasture. They are her babies from two years ago. They are quite friendly but like to protect their area. The other day I decided to work the geese. Tess, with Nan as backup, was sent on a come-bye. Do notice, yet once again, Nan is on the other side of Tess and a step or two behind. Nan does not believe in working chickens, ducks, turkeys or geese. Tess fetching the geese. Nan is barking in Tess's ear!!

Now here is Tess doing a very calm walk-up to the geese. Very quiet and smooth.

The geese try to scare her by advancing and flapping their wings. Again, see that Nan is behind Tess. Such a good back-up.

One goose reaches forward and tries to attack her. Nan swings to one side and Tess pushed straight on and doesn't give ground.

Ok, the goose doesn't stop and grabs her nose. SO WRONG!! BAD IDEA!! Tess lets the goose knows she is very displeased. The goose back pedals very quickly. Nan is staying out of goose pecking range.

Friday, May 29, 2009

The Best Support Team - Ever

Getty and Tess.

It takes a village to raise a child but it takes a supportive spouse for dog trialing!! Getty, in one of his rare appearance, was my sideline cheerleadring support team...along with Tess.

Nice turn around the post!! says Tess.

They hung out for quite a bit and watched the Open runs. True to form, Tess was the usual arm chair herder and provided comments via her ears and facial expressions during the runs.

Tess is frowning at a missed panel on the field.

Not only he is very supportive of the dog trialing, he pulled the trailer for me and set it up for the Key Pen trial but came back and got us (trailer included) after we were done. He even taped my runs and cheered people on.

As you can tell, Getty loves his Tess. I love both of them for being the Best Support Team - ever!!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Key Pen results - by Sue and George MacDonald

Key Pen results – 2009 by Sue MacDonald

WOW! What a week end! We had fantastic weather, fantastic judge, fantastic handlers, fantastic help! We'd like to thank Rob Lewis for doing the judging. It's a thankless job, boy he does a great job! But there's more! Rob not only judged for three days, but helped sort and set sheep for the fun and games on Sunday evening after the trial! What a sport. Thanks Rob.

Also thank you to Linda DeJong for doing all the score keeping, organizing fill in helpers, and the list goes on and on. Norm and Kathy Rivers..we just don't know what to say. You make us speechless in all you do for us. Kathy for all the time and work you put in to the awards, Norm for being every where and doing everything. Judy Norris for bringing her sheep to work on Sunday. What a welcome break for the home flock for one day. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Vicki Romero for helping with the kennel dogs and filling in without question. Thank you to ALL the folks that help set sheep, exhausted sheep and just kept things running so smooth. You all know we can't do this without you. YOU are the ones that make this worth doing!!

And boy did we have the new handlers!! We met so many new handlers and they were GOOD! We didn't have an award for the most promising novice dog, but I sure liked Kent Bradley's Crook! We also watched some GREAT nursery dogs. The nursery finals are going to be tough with those dogs in it! Nice going to all of you!

Open handlers, thank you for 'putting up' with our difficult courses.

When you have a smallish field, we have to come up with something new and different. Actually, I personally would like to try all that stuff again! So for those that weren't here, this is what they had to do.

Saturday they had a blind lift, then at the end of the fetch they had to do a Maltese cross. First direction straight on with the fetch, second direction was the start of the drive. The first drive gate had a dip a few yards in front of it so sheep and dog disappeared for a few seconds, the gate was visible and the turn was visible, but then the sheep and dog disappeared again for a few yards on the start of the cross drive.

Then all was normal for the remainder of the run. We had four sheep, but the shed was to be treated as a shed, last two on the head for full points. This course had 110 points possible.
Saturday nursery did not have to do the Maltese cross or shed.

Sunday the course was reversed, a different flock of sheep were brought in and instead of a shed, a three sided solid backed pen was put in.

Didn't realize how difficult that was going to be!!! Only one person got it, Bob Hickman and Mojo. Not only were they the only one's to get it, but they made it look SO easy! Geez!!! So for one of the fun events at the end of the day we gave those that entered a shot at trying it again, with a two minute time limit. Fast time winning the pot.

Three people got it done, one of which was Bob again, BUT with a different dog!!! But, he didn't win it time wise... Ian Caldicott and Bear did it in the fastest time, with Sue MacDonald in a close second (she actually penned them twice, but they bolted out the first time just as they went in. So she did it again, still fast!).

Monday was novice day. We did start with the nursery class and then moved right in to the Pro novice. Big PN class, actually bigger then open either day! Then into the ranch class and a large novice novice class.
So Saturday results:
30 teams to the post with 110 points possible
1. Maggi McClure Lil 104 WOW!
2. Diane Pagel Tess 96 I thought she said she was going to retire her?
3. Sue MacDonald Jan 95 Nice shed!!!!
4. Diane Pagel Lucy 94
5. Donna Donahue Davy 93.5 Hey, heard he was retired? :-)
6. Dee Marroni Cap 93.5 Nice to see you back on the trial field!
7. Linda DeJong Michael 91
8. Fran Macpherson Maud 91 Good start on the quilt!
9. George MacDonald Huck 90.5
10. Jim Cooper Zot 89.5
11. Lynne Green Kurt 87.5
12. Heidi Hanson Pete 85.5
13. Donna Donahue Kate 85 (sister to Pete)
14. Jeff Marroni Mick 84 Ditto to Dee!!!
15. Ian Caldicott Joe Kidd 82
16. Diane Pagel Nan 79
17. Maggi McClure Kep 78.5
18. George MacDonald Chris 77
19. Jim Cooper Kyle 76
20. Bob Hickman Mojo 75 The only one to get the sheep in the 'Hickman Hole' (three sided pen)
21. Brian Ricards Mig 73
22. Dave Imas Russel 57 yes, that's how you
spell Russel....
23.Josie Cowan Tristan 48
24. Brian Ricards Doc 32 first out , tough spot to be with this difficult course
25. Sue MacDonald Bess 19 Just couldn't get those buggers to move off the set out spot!!!
26. Ian Caldicott Bear RT
27. Bonnie Block Dan RT
28. Sue MacDonald Blitz RT
29. Dee Marroni Dharma RT
30. Linda DeJong Charlie RT

Nursery day 1
9 teams to the post 90 points possible
1. Dave Imas Cap 83.5
2. Jeff Marroni Carmen 78
3. Maggi McClure Gwen 76
4. Donna Donahue Taff 63
5. Jim Cooper Amos 53.5
6. Linda DeJong Pooka 53.5
7. Dee Marroni Q 52
8. Becki Maloney Finn RT
9. Becki Maloney Kirby DQ

Open results day two!
26 teams to the post 110 points possible
1. Ian Caldicott Joe Kidd 88.5
2. Maggi McClure Kep 88.5 Tie broken on out work
3. Bob Hickman Mojo 87.5
4. Jim Cooper Zot 83
5. Maggi McClure Lil 81
6. Donna Donahue Davy 80 there's one of those retired dogs again!
7. Sue MacDonald Bess 79
8. Sue MacDonald Jan 78
9. Brian Ricards Mig 78
10. Jim Cooper Kyle 77.5
11. Diane Pagel Tess 76
12. Fran Macpherson Maud 73
13. George MacDonald Huck 70
14. Linda DeJong Michael 67.5
15. Diane Pagel Nan 67
16. Sue MacDonald Blitz 66
17. Donna Donahue Kate 64
18. Brian Ricards Doc 63
19. Heidi Hanson Pete 62
20. Linda DeJong Charlie 61
21. Josie Cowan Tristan 59
22. Bonnie Block Dan 55
23. Diane Pagel Lucy 49.5
24. Ian Caldicott Bear RT
25. Dave Imas Russel RT
26. George MacDonald Chris RT

Nursery Day two
8 teams to the post 90 points possible
1. Becki Maloney Kirby 77.5
2. Maggi McClure Gwen 75
3. Linda DeJong Pooka 64
4. Jim Cooper Amos 62
5. Becki Maloney Finn 55
6. Fran Macpherson Mirk 53
7. Donna Donahue Taff RT
8. Dave Imas Cap RT

First class on the course was the nursery class
6 teams to the post with 90 points possible
Nursery three
1. Dave Imas Cap 72
2. Becki Maloney Finn 61
3. Maggi McClure Gwen 45
4. Becki Maloney Kirby 43.5
5. Jim Cooper Amos RT
6. Donna Donahue Taff RT

Pro Novice
34 teams to the post 90 points possible
1. Karen Mohney Grit 80 How on earth do you do this? Drive 6 hours to get here, run your dogs and drive 6 hours to get home, all in the same day!!! AND win your class!!!
2. Fran Macpherson OK Jud 77 Did I hear correctly... retiring him this year?
3. Gael Gann Chip 71
4. Jim cooper Amos 70
5. Pamela Harding Caymus 67.5 rescue dog!
6. Josie Cowan Tib 67
7. Dave Imas Cap 65
8. Ursula Pettyjohn Pete 62.5
9. Becki Maloney Yank 60
10. Janet Thorpe Scott 59
11. Karen Combs Buddy 55
12. Karen Mohney Maverick 55
13. Judy Norris Glee 55
14.Bill Barnett Dutch 55 Good to see you again Bill! It's been way too long!
15. Susan Crocker Zen 54.5 Kelpie
16. Richard White Theo 50
17. Josie Cowan Cheilidh 45
18. Nora Linbo Tilly 40
19. Gael Gann Sweet 39
20. Bill Barnett Rex 39
21. Judy Norris kasey 34.5
22. Norm Rivers Scotia 31
23. Linda DeJong Pooka 30
24.Jeanne Boudrieau Rocky RT
25. Maggi McClure Betty RT
26. Maggi McClure Johnny Rt
27.Sandy Johnson Troy RT
28. Fran Macpherson Mirk RT
29. Sandy Johnson Taite RT
30. Vickie Romero Skye RT
31. Susan Crocker Rani RT Kelpie
32.Sandra Katzen Zephyr RT
33. Kathy Rivers Mike Did not want to be scored
34. Karen Mohney Ajax 76.5 Non compete

Ranch class
21 teams to the post 80 points possible
1. Janet Thorpe Scott 75 Great Run! That's the way to go out in Ranch and move up to Pro Novice!!!
2. Jorgen Persson Merdck 74 Very nice to meet you. Hope to see you and Merdck again!
3. Nora Linbo Nick 72
4. Karen Combs Skye 71.5
5. Kent Bradley Ming 69
Very nice to meet you Kent. Hope to see you again!
6. Bob Hickman Trooper 68
7. Kent Bradley Crook 67.5 I like this dog!
8. Josie Cowan Tib 65
9. Sandra Katzen Zephyr 58
10. Judy Norris Britt 5 7
11. Judy Norris Abby 47.5
12. Josie Cowan Ceilidh 46
13. Fran Macpherson Mirk 41
14. Kathleen Torkelson Emma 41 Emma's not only pretty, but has talent!
15. Diane Pagel Sava RT
16. Norm Rivers Lana RT rescue dog
17. Bill Barnett Mike RT
18. Sandra Katzen Lark RT
19. Marge Strom Kirra RT
20. Linda DeJong Kelly RT
21. Sue MacDonald Wink RT

Novice Novice
We had a mistake in the tally of scores, but that's ok! You'll just notice a small shift of placings at the top of the list. Those that got awards still keep them!
16 teams to the post with 60 points possible
1. Jorgen Persson Merdc 59 OUT OF 60!!! Lost 1 point on the lift!
2. Janice Bryant Flo 57 Never been to a dog trial before, but uses her dog on her large flock just down the road from us. Way to go Janice and Flo!
3. Vicki Romero Jess 55 This is the corrected run. The pen score wasn't right the first time around...
4. Kent Bradley Ming 53
5. Gael Gann 50
6. Kathleen Torkelso Emma 50
7. Karen Combs Skye 49
8. Kent Bradley Crook 47
9. Karen Combs Tex 45
10. Sandra Katzen Lark 42
11. Jennifer Kriegel Zanie 39 Our only junior handler! Nice job and welcome to our family!
12. Suzy Smith Belle RT our only cattle dog.
13. Janet Thorpe Rainy RT
14. Jeanne Boudrieau Rocky 54 Non compete
15. Bill Barnett Mike 5 Non compete
That's it! Thanks for coming and see a lot of you at Whidbey Island!

Written by: Sue and George

Ranch Class - Ken Pen

The Ranch Class was quite full and very tough. There were some high scores. It was run towards the end of the day. It was very warm.

Janet and Scott in their last Ranch Class. See how nice his outrun is.....for an old dog!!

Nice fetch. I bet she was pleased with this.

Look how tight that turn is at the post!

Right through the first panels and she had a nice crossdrive too.

Then back to the post to settle the sheep. Very calm and quiet.

What a pen. Scott is very happy in this picture. He loves to work with Janet.

Nora Linbo and Nick. Now that is one heck of a nice dog.

Bob Hickman and Ranger. Ranger has to have the longest legs of any of the dogs.

Sue MacDonald and Wink. Sue and George put on the trial. It is a first class trial. A real 5 star type of trial. They are the nicest people too boot! It can't get any better that this. Sue has a nice way with dogs. This team is one to watch out for!!

Linda DeJong and Kelly. This dog has a lot of power and go!!

Kathleen and Emma on the first leg of the drive. Look how nice that drive is going!! She has done a great job with her.

And she topped it off with a nice pen. Way to go with this fine, young red dog!!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

ProNovice - Key Pen

There were some mighty fine ProNovice runs on Monday. It was a real joy to watch.

Dave Imas and his Cap. This is one hot team!!

Fran and Judd. Coming down on the fetch...a bit wide.

See the sheep jump. She was feeling the spring weather.

The other side of the jump!! Judd is thinking "What the heck!!"

Fran penning with Judd. Very nice job.

Janet and Scott on the fetch. He was on the muscle.

First leg of the drive. They have been very well as a team.

Beautiful pen. Very calm and collected.

Jeanne and Rocky. She just got Rocky AND this was her first run, EVER!! Look at great that turn around the post is and how quiet she is at the post. This is a team to watch out for!! They just rock.

Tomorrow I will post Ranch. My camera ran out of space so I didn't get any Novice runs.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Key Pen Open Pictures

I lugged my new camera to the top where I set sheep with Sue MacDonald. She wrestled the sheep out of the pen and Tess and I set them. It was nice to see the view from the top. Here are some pixs from Sunday.

Click on the pixs for a larger view. (some will not expand)

The Honorable Judge Rob Lewis, a well respected handler. He was a super judge and everyone loved him! We hope he comes back soon.

The sheep checking out the handler and dog below.

Tess doing setout. She is an awesome setout dog and has been doing it for years. She set for all three days. She loved the view from the top also.

The view from the top, as Fran Macpherson's Maude brings the sheep down on the fetch.

Brian Ricard's Mig on the lift. Faster than a speeding bullet!

Mig on the fetch. She was a powerhouse.

Bob Hickman's Mojo on the lift. She was very thoughtful on lifting the sheep.

Bonnie Block and Dan on the first leg of the drive. I was done with setout and was under the handler's tent. Bonnie is the one always taking picture so it was only fitting that I take a picture of her. She is a fantastic photographer.

Brian Ricard and his dogs: Raven, Mig and Doc.

Brian with that cute English smile. He is always cracking jokes. He also asks how much I weigh.

Donna Donahue at the open pen. Kate is the dog but she was too far back.

George MacDonald and Huck on the fetch and setting up to the Cross.
Nice patient work at the mouth of the Cross.

Tomorrow I will do the other classes.

Monday, May 25, 2009

A tribute for those - Memorial day

I don't know who was the photographer but this is a stunning picture

He, who fought for our freedom
Silently lies among his comrades
Brave and strong he stood tall
A bullet started his fall.

I lay the flowers at my feet
And the leaves I gently sweep
And tears fall from my eyes
As I said my loving good byes.

The soldier who gave his life
To stop the pain and war torn strife
So, I can sit on my porch at night
And enjoy my freedom of life.

Lest not forget the fallen men
Our brothers, fathers and friends
The gravesides we must tend
And our hearts who will mend.

Raise the glorious Flag of honor
Wear the war torn badge of pride
Hold your hand over your heart
And salute the rows of fallen dead.

They have given their lives for us
Do not forget the price they paid
Their lives, their loves and their future
Sweet freedom they have given us.

Good bye my brother, father and friend
I go home at night knowing that
You still are here in my life
You live in me and now I see.

Freedom is free to all
The price is high for some
And we must not forget
To thank you on this day.

I walk away from your grave
And from the life you gave
I see that freedom is sweet
And your sacrifice is what I keep.

~diane pagel~ 2009~ I wrote this for our women and men heroes

Nursery, ProNovice, Ranch and Novice - Monday

Tess as the armchair herder
Again, the morning rolled around too early and I got out of bed with Tess in tow. She was going to me back to the trial field and set out sheep with Janet in ProNovice. I grabbed a hot coffee and met Jerill and Janet at the barn. We loaded up Rainey and Sava into their truck and put Mattie in the barn kennel. Scott was already loaded. Off we went at 7:30 to run in the ProNovice, Ranch and Novice part of the trail. Janet had signed up Scott to run in PN and Ranch and Rainey in Novice. I signed up Sava for Ranch.

Traffic was light and we pulled up about the seventh run of ProNovice and got situated. It was quite chilly and I had forgotten my coat in my truck much to my dismay. Jerill kindly loaned me his fleece and it made a huge difference under my flannel shirt. It was low key at the trial and much laughter was heard. So far, the trial has been exceptionally good. We missed the Nursery runs.

The PN course was a straight fetch and a right hand drive and the crossdrive was down a hill but if your sheep were offline they would miss the second panel. Then an open side pen and you got to pick the side. The sheep were the Scotties and Coopworths which were perfect for the classes.

There were quite a few very nice runs in PN and skillful handling to make the tricky second panel. The sheep were clever as if you did not line them up correctly into the pen, they would sneak off to one side. Janet was later in the class with Scott and he cast our fast and wide. His lift was nice and he brought the sheep to Janet in a straight line. There was a fuss at the turn at the post and then off to the drive with a little fuss in the crossdrive which caused missed panels and then a line to a cone to settle the sheep down. It was a little messy and then to the pen where she timed out as the last sheep was walking in. It was a nice run with a few areas that needed a little polishing up but still quite good. I don’t know how she placed but it was like 10 out of 31 dogs or so.

Jeanne ran her Rocky and that team is one that is going to be taking home the ribbons soon. They had a bit of trouble on the crossdrive and that was the end of their run but the teamwork was a joy to watch. I look forward to seeing the dynamic duo again!!

First place in PN was Karen Mahoney and Grit? It was calm and quiet and a real joy to watch.

We took a lunch break after the PN runs and we had hot grilled burger served yet, once again by Norm. The sun came out and we all relaxed in the warmth. The PN awards were presented. First place was a Border Collie seat belt covers. Kathy Rivers made them and it was stunning!

Ranch was an outrun, lift and fetch and then a left hand drive and a pull through the fetch panels and then to the pen. Janet ran Scott in Ranch and it was a very nice run. She gave him a redirect and he had a nice lift and fetch, turn around the post and a gorgeous drive and then trotted the sheep into the pen. She did very well and handled the run very calmly and quite well. She should be proud of herself as she won first place.

Kathleen ran Emma and she was tight at the top and was offline on her fetch but they recovered and had a nice drive. I really like how Emma was pushing the sheep on the cross drive. They had nice pen work also. I really liked how Kathleen has worked with Emma and made her a nice working dog. She has nice flanks and great feel for her sheep. This is a team that is making a name for themselves!

Josie and Ceilidh also laid down a fast run. It may have not been the winning run but I really like what I saw in this dog. Fast, stock savvy and keen to boot. Later I found out that she is related to half of my dogs so that explains it!!

Second place was won by Jorgen and Merchex (sp??) who laid down a brilliant run that was calm and quiet. I think it was his first trial and he is a very nice guy. He will be an asset to the trial circuit. I really liked how well his dog ran.

I ran Sava who has never been on a trial field and has been working on the farm flock. She came back from Scott’s but is not finished yet. She just turned two but still is immature. She is a really sweet dog and was so excited to be on the field. I had to remind her that staying next to me was the first part of the journey on the trial field. She shook with excitement and I sent her away. She ran out and then widened out and then flung out and came behind the sheep. I gave her a few flanks to keep her out. She hasn’t lifted off a person yet so we had to overcome that hurdle. I stopped her at the top and she dropped like a rock and then I walked her up a few feet then downed her so the sheep would drift off the person. I walked her up and then downed her so she would not bring the sheep back to the setout and then called her name and told her to walk up. She came forward strong and I flanked her and she took it and the line was straight to my feet. She had a wonderful turn around the post and we started the first half of the drive. The first half of the first leg was straight and then one ewe wanted to break away and the rest of the sheep began to graze. I had her put the errant ewe back and the sheep stalled. She was having a hard time trying to push them so I flanked her several times and they would move a few feet and stop. Therefore, I retired and had her bring the sheep to me and we used up our time at the pen. She made swift work of the sheep at the pen with her wide flanks and steady walkups. We penned the sheep quickly and I walked off with her and was very proud that she did so well. She stopped very well for me, took her flanks, and tried her hardest. I know what we need to work on at home and she will not have any issues doing that. I am very happy with the quality of her work. She had a perfect outrun, lift and almost perfect fetch!!

Novice was the last class to run. It was a large class and consisted of an outrun, lift and fetch and a pen. Janet and Rainey were early up and Rainey ran out nice to the sheep but had a cross over. The setout person was walking away, the sheep followed her, and Rainey had a hard time getting the sheep of the setout person. She did finally get them off and was offline and Janet retired her. I know what we will be working on next. Kathleen had the same issue but I cannot remember how her run went. Kent and his Crook had a nice controlled run. Jorgen and Merchex had another nice run. There were some nice Novice runs.

I took tons of pixs so didn’t take any notes on the runs so when I get the results, I will post what I remember. In a day or so, I will post the pixs. I took a bunch!!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Key Pen - Sunday Results

Morning came too early and the sounds of sheep and dogs and people rustling about made me turn over in my bed. Tess’s wet kisses were the final prompting and I climbed out of bed. I was wondering why I felt like I was cramped in the bed and realized that three Border Collies were stretched out and I had been squeezed against a wall. Sigh, I guess Tee, Nan and Lucy might be a wee bit spoiled.

Nursery was the first runs and the course had been switched about; the drive was reversed and the fetch was in a different position. I watched some stellar runs and marveled at some of the very promising dogs that were on the course. There were about eight dogs that ran on light hair sheep and you could see how they adjusted from the heavy sheep that they had run on the day prior.

It was not as cold this morning as yesterday and the sun had not peeked out yet. For Open, they had a dogleg fetch, then the Maltese Cross, the drive was reversed; the first leg of the leg was up a long hill and quite a distance. The outrun was not blind but set up so your dog wanted to do a straight fetch so you had to down your dog at 2:00 to start the dog leg fetch to 10, then between a tree and a rock, then through the fetch panel and then straight to you. The Maltese Cross proved to be very difficult as the hair sheep did not want to go through it. The first leg of the drive was long and then a tight turn to be proper on the crossdrive. The crossdrive faced the nightly pasture so that was a heavy draw. The last half of the crossdrive was blind and if you didn’t set it up correctly, the sheep would go into the gully and bypass the panels. Then a tight turn to the pen. The pen was an open sided pen and the handler was about 15 feet away and had to hang onto a rope. The rope was about 4 feet so add the handler and a crook and any side you picked to cover still had an opening of one foot for the sheep to slip through. The post was near to the exhaust side and it was obvious by the end of Open, that the pen was impossible to do and the team of Bob/Mojo was the only one to complete this obstacle. The second drive panel was tough to see and you could see your sheep as they were in front of it, or as in most of the runs, as they were off to the side and missing it completely. The course time was set for 7 minutes.

Tess and I were the first one on deck so we had no runs to analyze before we went. We did our country western dance before we stepped on the course so she was pumped up and her eyes were gleaming. She burst off to her away side at a fast clip and then at 2:00, slowed down and I blew an away whistle. As usual, she ignored me and slowly walked to the sheep and did a nice lift. I downed her and she stopped and took the fast come bye flank to start the dog legs fetch. She brought the sheep down and did the dog leg quite nicely and then first part of the cross and then as I was setting the sheep up for the second cross, she sliced and they exploded near me and we had to go on to the drive. She pushed the sheep up the hill and had a nice tight turn at the first panel. Then I set her and the sheep up for the crossdrive and crossed my fingers that when she was in the blind section that she would hold the driveline true. I couldn’t see them and blew walk ups and then at the last second saw the sheep a but low and gave her a come bye and she ignore it and the sheep slid next to the panels, missing it by a hair. We had the sheep lined up at the pen but they snuck past the opening at the handler’s side and we had several more attempts before we timed out. After my run, the Judge Rob Lewis came out and asked me if I could see the last half of my crossdrive and I told him, I could not but just guess where the sheep and dog were and hoped for the best and he told me it was a nice crossdrive and if Tess had took that come bye flank, we would have hit the panels! Outrun 6, Lift 0, Fetch 2, Cross A 0, Cross B 10, Drive 6 (missed panels!!) and Pen 10 for a score of 76 out of 110.

Lucy was next around 10 on the morning and I sent her on the away side. She ran out clean and wide and stopped when I asked her to. She had a nice soft lift to the sheep. The sheep started to come down straight so I flanked her on a come bye to start the dogleg fetch, and had an extremely smooth fetch, dogleg and all. I had the sheep lined up for the Cross, she took the flank she thought she needed and we I tried to get her in the right position she flanked out wide, and as a result, we missed both crosses. She had a hard time doing the flanks I asked of her on this section. Her first leg was nice and strong and she got the first drive panel and dead on the crossdrive, had a nice turn at the second panel, and was coming to the pen when we timed out. It was a beautiful crossdrive and again the judge complimented me on the drive. I was very proud of Lucy on the drive as it was very tough and part of it, she had to do blind and believe me. Outrun 0, Lift 0, fetch ½, Cross A 10, Cross B 10 and Drive 30 (time out) and pen 10 for 49.5. If we had gotten the drive, we would have gotten in the high 70’s.

Tess and I went and set out for a bunch of runs in Open and she is a great setout dog. She handles the sheep well and it was enjoyable to set with Sue M. we took a break for lunch and then I had to run Nan. The open runs went quickly at 7 minutes and it would be nice to be done early.

Nan was amped up since she was at the trailer all day and had heard me working the other dogs. She spun around and danced with joy. She is such a silly girl sometimes. Getty had arrived so he has to tape my run. Nan was ready to go and scanned the field for the sheep, her back stiffed, and then I knew she had seen them. I sent her on an away and she raced off, sending little tufts of grass in her wake. At the top, she stopped when I asked her and laid down a brilliant fetch to bring the sheep to the mouth of the cross. I had to slow her down, as the hair sheep were trigger-happy. I had her walk them slowly into the cross and she set them up for the second cross when they spun next to me. We had to finagle a bit but got them through and it took a bit of time. The first leg was true and we had a wide turn and then an excellent crossdrive. She held the line, the sheep appeared and flowed through the second panels, and the turn was tight to the pen. She was marching them to the pen when we ran out of time. She had a brilliant run in my eyes and one of the best she has ever done and even though we had timed out, I was very pleased with her. The judge came out and was bumming with me that we had timed out. Her crossdrive was the best that he had seen all day and had we not time out we would have won. Outrun o, Lift 1, Fetch 0, Cross A 0, Cross B 2, drive 30 and Pen 10 for 67. I did the math and we had lost two points in the drive when we timed out so if we had not timed out; we would have only lost a total of 15 total for a score of 95 than the 67. Alas, but that is trialing and the time at the Cross cost us dearly but Nan didn’t know that; she knew that she had done a great job for me and that I was very happy with her. She raced off to soak in the water tub and then to shake the water off on me and look at me with her eyes all gleaming. I gave her a pet and told her that I was very proud of her and she walked off the field held high and chest puffed out with pride. Even though Lucy and Nan both timed out on the drive, I was very happy with their work as the drives were excellent and they did everything I asked of them, even in the blind crossdrive area and the trust was there. I don’t know how we placed but we didn’t get in the top five.

Tess at almost 11 years old, ran brilliantly for me plus set out sheep for both days and never faltered. She has carried me on her broad shoulders and made me the handler that I am today. When the judge complimented on my handling he should have thanked Tess for making me the handler that I am today. Without her taking care of me all of these years, I would have not had such good runs and I love her for her loyalty and partnership over the years. She will run in a couple more local trials and then retire and it will be a huge loss to me but she is ready to turn me loose of her apron strings and I hope that I can make her proud. I have Lucy and Nan now to be my partners and they are doing great but it is your first Open dog that will always have huge part of your heart and that will carry you to become a better handler. I will miss the look she gives me in the shedding ring just before she come through; the look that tells me that she has hold of the sheep. I will miss the look that she gives me when she spies her sheep and then looks deeply into my eyes as if to say “we can do it” and I will miss our country western dance that we do before each run. I will miss her dearly but each time I go to the post, a piece of her is still in my heart and I with pride inside, know that she has done all she can to make me who I am now. Bless the Open dogs that have carried all of us to be the handlers we are today. I love Tess for being Tess and am truly blessed to have her in my life.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Key Pen trial- Saturday results

Well, I am getting spotty internet connection so the postings will be short. I hope to post each night and won’t have pixs until I get back. I didn’t take any pixs as I was running three Open dogs and then I set sheep for all of Nursery.

Getty hauled the new trailer to the trial field and set it up. We had to figure out why the electrical was not working and the prior owner had flipped all the breakers off. We tried to use the heater last night but it didn’t work and I am sure it is just figuring it all out. Getty spent the night and stuck around until after Nan’s run then bolted for home. He will come back on Sunday to pick the rig and us up and we go home. Then on Monday, I will car pool with Janet to the field. I will be setting sheep on Monday.

We had a few Open dogs pull so the total was 30 dogs. The course is a short course but very tricky. There is no give-me on this field. These sheep were held in a pocket so it was a blind outrun. They were not in the area that they are normally set. You had to send our dog out blind and if they got too close, the sheep would lift way off course. The fetch was straight to a Maltese cross and you had to put the sheep through one side and then the other side. You were in one quadrant and could not leave or move. Imagine a Maltese cross and you in one section and you could not leave that section. That made it hard, as you could not step out to block the sheep on your side. If your sheep broke the plane, then you had to go on. In other words, one attempt and once the exited the second Maltese cross they first drive panel was ahead of the sheep. There was a very hard pull to the right and in front of the sheep was the pasture they had spent the night before. The panels were set in a hole and it was tough as once the sheep went down the gully and you were not dean on, you were toast. Then a partial blind turn and the crossdrive was blind and in a gulley that swerved away off the line and you didn’t see your sheep until half through the crossdrive. The second panels were way up the field and the sheep pulled back to the setout pen. Then a right turn and you could not leave the cross until the sheep were in the shedding ring so the last leg was a dogleg fetch.

Then you had to take the last two for full points and the sheep did not want to shed at all today. It got very hot and the sheep were really pulling as well as slow. The terrain is very rolling and you would lose sight of your sheep for a portion of the fetch and drive. It was a tough course but do able and you had to be right on.

Therefore, Nan was my first dog to run in the third position. She cast out wide and well and came behind and the sheep and had a nice lift. A couple of bobbles on the fetch but nice indeed. Nice walk through the first cross and then a little fuss for the second part but we got it. The cross was judged in two sections for 10 points each. The drive she was pushy and didn’t take my away flank so we missed the first panel and then wobbly on the cross drive. She was in a zone and not teaming up well and brought the sheep into the ring. I had a couple of times that I called her in for a shed but she didn’t take them and we ran out of time. In the ring, she was running on autopilot and not felling her sheep. Score. Outrun 0, Lift 1, Fetch 3, Cross A 0, Cross B 3, Drive 14 and Shed 10. 79 total out of 110

Getty and I had breakfast after this and then he headed out. He had to come home and take care of the farm and hang out with his band buddies.

A few runs later, I went to the post with Lucy. She just moved up to Open and this was our second trial together. I was not too sure about her doing a blind outrun she is so biddable that I could walk her through it. I sent her to the away side and she cast out and then cast out again and found her sheep. She has a nice lift but the sheep jump and her fetch was dead on. The sheep wanted to veer off and I had to flank her come bye to hold the pressure. She kept wanting to flip behind the sheep so I would have to reflank her. She got the sheep through the gates and she did the Maltese cross – both sections flawlessly.

The drive was spot on, she covered the pressure side and put them through the panels and a nice tight turn, and then she and the sheep disappeared into the gulley. I blew walk ups and kept my fingers crossed that she would hold the line and not follow the sheep. I blew a come by whistle too early and the sheep popped over the rise so I quickly reflanked her and put them on line. Then she marched them dead on through the second panel and a tight turn and perfect into the shedding ring. I created a huge hole for her to come through but didn’t hold the sheep. I did another attempt and she didn’t come through so we timed out. Aside from the shed, I was very pleased how well she ran for me. Score, Outrun 0, Lift 2, Fetch 1, Cross A 0, Cross B 0, Drive 3 and Shed 10. 94 was the score out of 110 total. Last week she could find her sheep but this week she was a rock star.

We broke for lunch and the sun was blazing. My last dog was Tess and she will be 11 in July. Again, I sent her on an away like the others. She raced out and then saw the sheep and slowed down and did a cautious lift. Of the three, she had the best method on her outrun and lift. Her fetch was straight on, I flanked her, she held the line, and at the last second a couple of sheep slipped past one side of the fetch gates. There was nothing else that could have been done. She did the cross one way and I didn’t hold my end so one sheep slipped out one side and the rest went proper. One the drive, he held them nice and had tight turn and down the gulley. I whistled her to walk and she popped out of the gulley with the sheep on the course. The sheep leaned to one side and she had to flank to put them back and hit the other panel and had a tight turn and straight to the ring. In the ring, I made a hole, she came through, and the sheep turned so she held the butts instead of the nose and we were done. It was quite hot and her tongue was hanging out and she knew she did great. Score, Outrun 1, Lift 0, Fetch 5, Cross A 0, Cross B 2, Drive 4 and Shed 2. Total was 96 out of 110.

The highest score was 104 and that run was sweet and Maggi and Li held the standard on that run. The Judge was Rob Lewis said I had the winning run and then I did the bobbles which cost us. Rob also said I was the most improved handler. He saw me ten years ago when Tess and I ran in Novice.

Overall, Tess was 2nd, Lucy was 4th and Nan was midpack. I was very happy with how the dogs ran and tomorrow’s course is going to be a lot tougher!!

We had a handler potluck tonight and Norm made smoked chicken and roast beef. We ate well and now it is soon for bed for the girls and me. I set sheep for all of Nursery and that wore me out today. I’ll post how we did tomorrow when I get home.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Key Pen Trial

I'm at a trial this weekend. I don't know if I can get access to post to my blog. If I can, and if I cannot, then the next posting will be when I get home

The trial is at Sue and George MacDonald's lovely farm. I ran my first trial there almost ten years ago. They are some of the nicest, if not the nicest people in the world!!

Here is the run order for the weekend:

Open 34 teams to the post
1. Brian Ricards Doc
2. Donna Donahue Kate
3. Diane Pagel Nan
4. Lorri Schubert Mot
5. Maggi McClure Kep
6. George Mac Huck
7. Jim Cooper Kyle
8. Sue MacDonald Bess
9. Bob Hickman Mojo
10. Linda DeJong Charlie
11. Heidi Hanson Pete
12. Dee Marroni Dharma
13. Bonnie Block Dan
14. Ian Caldicott Joe
15. Brian Ricards Mig
16. Jeff Marroni Mick
17. Diane Pagel Lucy
18. Dave Imas Russel
19. Maggi McClure Lil
20. Fran Macpherson Maud
21. Donna Donahue Davy
22. Jim Cooper Zot
23. Sue MacDonald Jan
24. Lynne Green Kurt
25. Josie Cowan Tristan
26. George Mac Chris
27. Cheryl Munson Jet
28. Dee Marroni Cap
29. Diane Pagel Tess
30. Linda DeJong Michael
31. Ian Caldicott Bear
32. Lorri Schubert Quill
33. Cheryl Munson Cap
34. Sue MacDonald Blitz

Nursery Saturday
1. Dee Marroni Q
2. Maggi McClure Gwen
3. Donna Donahue Taff
4. Becki Maloney Finn
5. Dave Imas Cap
6. Dee Marroni Carmen
7. Jim Cooper Amos
8. Becki Maloney Kirby

Nursery Sunday
1. Becki Maloney Kirby
2. Maggi McClure Gwen
3. Linda DeJong Pooka
4. Dave Imas Cap
5. Becki Maloney Finn

Open Sunday 30 teams to the post
1. Diane Pagel Tess
2. Cheryl Munson Cap
3. Josie Cowen Tristan
4. Sue MacDonald Jan
5. George Mac Chris
6. Heidi Hanson Pete
7. Ian Caldicott Bear
8. Brian Ricards Mig
9. Maggi McClure Lil
10. Jim Cooper Kyle
11. Dave Imas Russel
12. Diane Pagel Lucy
13. Sue MacDonald Blitz
14. Donna Donahue Davy
15. Linda DeJong Michael
16. George Mac Huck
17. Lorri Schubert Quill
18. Fran Macpherson Maud
19. Bob Hickman Mojo
20. Cheryl Munson Jet
21. Brian Ricards Mig
22. Maggi McClure Kep
23. Bonnie Block Dan
24. Donna Donahue Kate
25. Linda DeJong Charlie
26. Jim Cooper Zot
27. Sue MacDonald Bess
28. Diane Pagel Nan
29. Lorri Schubert Mot
30. Ian Caldicott Joe

1. Dave Imas Cap
2. Linda DeJong Pooka
3. Becki Maloney Finn
4. Maggi McClure Gwen
5. Becki Maloney Kirby

Pro Novice 37 to the post
1. Jim Cooper Amos
2. Becki Maloney Yank
3. Gael Gann Sweet
4. Josie Cowen Ceilidh
5. Judy Norris Kasey
6. Maggi McClure Betty
7. Karen Combs Buddy
8. Bill Barnett Dutch
9. Norm Rivers Scotia
10. Karen Mohney Maverick
11. Linda DeJong Pooka
12. Jo Roach Slider
13. Fran Macpherson Mirk
14. Nancy Fairchild Kit
15. Josie Cowen Tib
16. Vicki Romero Skye
17. Judy Norris Glee
18. Bill Barnett Rex
19. Sandra Katzen Zyphr
20. Karen Mohney Grit
21. Maggi McClure Johnny
22. Pamela Harding Caymus
23. Lorri Schubert Pete
24. Carole Russo Dante'
25. Susan Crocker Zen
26. Ursula Pettyjohn Pete
27. Gael Gann Chip
28. Kathy Rivers Mick
29. Dave Imas Cap
30. Cheryl Munson Flint
31. Janet Thorpe Scott
32. Jeanne Rocky
33. Nora Linbo Nick
34. Susan Crocker Rani
35. Karen Mohney Ajax n/c

Ranch 23 to the post
1. Bill Barnett Mike
2. Janet Thorpe Scott
3. Fran Macpherson Mirk
4. Josie Cowen Tib
5. Nora Linbo Nick
6. Jo Roach Slider
7. George Mac Newt
8. Bob Hickman Trooper
9. Josie Cowen Ceilidh
10. Sue MacDonald Wink
11. Norm Rivers Lana
12. Judy Norris Britt
13. Kent Bradley Ming
14. Linda DeJong Kelly
15. Carole Russo Dante'
16. Kathleen Torkelson Emma
17. Karen Combs Skye
18. Sandra Katzen Lark
19. Judy Norris Abby
20. Kent Bradley Crook

Novice Novice 17 to the post
1. Jennifer Zanie
2. Karen C Tex
3. Janet T Rainy
4. Kathleen T Emma
5. Kent B Ming
6. Suzy Smith Belle
7. Janice B Flo
8. Marge S Kirra
9. Gael Gann Chile
10. Vicki R Jess
11. Karen C Skye
12. Sandra K Lark
13. Jeanne Moses
14. Jorgen Merdex
15. Kent Crook
16. Bonnie B Ellie N/C
17. Bill Mike

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Working Turkeys

So we have a pair of Turkeys on the farm. Tom and Jennie-O. They came named that way. I have them in one large pasture.

Tess is great at working them. She works anything. Nan, on the other hand refuses to work chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys. Oh yea, she ignores the cow.

But Nan has to be helping Tess in her chores. She loves to help. But she won't work the fowls but is more than happy to run around, raise her tail in the air and barks like a hyena when Tess does the fowl work. Tess ignores her

So someone asked if Tess works turkeys so here is a demo of Tess working the turkeys. Here is a demo of Nan doing all the flanks next to Tess. Now they are getting ready for the outrun.

Oh, oh says the turkeys....something is up.

Wow, look at the nice brace work by Tess and Nan. Note that Nan is never near the turkeys but always on the other side.

Here is Tess bringing the turkeys to me. See Nan in the background running about with her tail in the air. She is quite entertaining!!

I told Tess to walk up and she is bringing the turkeys to me. Nan decided a Leap Up was in order.

Steady now. Tess is working the two turkeys with a combined IQ of 12. Her IQ is 10X of the turkeys!!

"Away to me" and Tess is bringing them. See Nan cleverly avoid the turkeys and jump into the branch pile so she is not too close to the turkeys!!

Another flank and the turkeys are getting the idea to come to me.

This is really what Nan thinks of herding turkeys...all fun and games.....tail up and barking . I guess Tess will be on turkey duty for a while.