Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy Girl

Good grief, we have had some dreary weather here this week.  Nothing but clouds and fog.  Happily, the weather hasn't put a damper on Sophie's fun!  Here's my old lady yesterday morning:

Yes, I still need a new camera....

Happy New Year from all of us here!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from all of us here at Champersands' Tail!

One of these days, I swear, I will get this done more than a few days before Christmas so that we can actually have them printed and mailed....  For now, e-cards will just have to do!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

RockDogs on Etsy!

Oh, hello there!  Glad you stopped by despite my long break from blogging!  It seems real life just got a bit too busy to be living it and writing about it.  I've also been rethinking where I want to go with this blog, and I still haven't come to any strong conclusions.  However, I do have some posts planned for this month while I'm on winter break!  That's right, finals have come and gone, and I didn't post even once to bitch about it!  (Consider yourself lucky.)

The only thing I wanted to share today is my new Etsy shop, RockDogs!  If you just clicked on it, you probably saw that I only have one lonely item for sale.  I'm working on fixing that, though!  I brought all of my supplies to my parents' home so that I can complete some other projects while I'm here.

I gotta say, wow, what a difference "real" paracord makes in the finished look of these leashes compared to the cheapo paracord I got from HomeDepot (see my previous post).  The only thing I'm disappointed in now is that the more legit stuff is not quite as soft as HD's stuff.  I'm probably going to try one or two more brands of paracord before I settle on one.  For now, though, I have about 1000ft of various colors to work with.

Just in case you wanted to see an actual dog on this post, here's Miss Elsie yesterday soaking up some winter sun on the front patio.

She's never been on those rockers before, so it was pretty cute to see her there, just like Soph.  I guess we raised a bunch of prisses.  No lowly dog beds for them....

Monday, November 11, 2013

Just some little projects!

I have been experimenting with knots!  If you asked my dad two weeks ago, I'm sure he would have told you that I am hopeless with them.  You see, he's dealt with years of my lashing down the hay stack in imprecise and hasty signature knots I could come up with after ducking under--risking all-day running nose and congestion--the tarp and before scurrying off in the cold to go feed some hungry horses.

He is going to be so impressed when I take these little creations home this weekend!  My first attempts at paracord--albeit, cheap, non-military grade paracord.  I'm going to be on the hunt for some good legit stuff that is stronger with more color options, pick up more hardware, and pretend like I have time for another dog-related hobby.

Black and Tan lead, with a fixed d-ring fitted to Elsie's neck, to make it a quick collar/lead combo.  Used as a lead-only, the extra knotting makes a great grip for in-traffic walking.

White and tan slip lead, photographed with a double bolt snap to the o-ring for a fixed lead.

Have a great day!
Dog Mom

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

It's November!

Oookay, so almost a whole month went by without posting.  Yikes. I'm giving myself points for not letting it go a whole month, though.  Sounds reasonable.  Here's an obviously incomplete recap of October, in no particular order:

-I started teaching a few of the basic manners/obedience series at the shelter on my own. Woo-hoo!  It is both fun and stressful.  The former outweighs the latter, and I hope I get to keep teaching next term.
-Champ and I dropped in on a rally-o class that ended up being a little more rally-frEe.  He did awesome.  I was a little sloppy.
-Champ and I have continued practicing rally-frEe type stuff and obedience.
-Sophie is learning how to pivot!  She loves it.
-Elsie has made huge strides in her loose leash walking.
-Both the girls got new Chilly Dog Sweaters.

-Champ got a new bunny fur tug that he looooooves.
-I will not list off the other things I've bought them this month in case my mother is reading this. ;)
-The dogs, kittens, and I went home to my parents' for a few days' visit.  There, Sophie had a vet visit, I baked an amazing apple pull apart bread with cream cheese icing, I rode one of my horses, and just relaxed....
-I attended a legal seminar with keynote speaker Sheryl Wudunn, Pulitzer prize winner, author and founder of Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide.  I was thrilled to be there.  If you haven't seen the documentaries, they are on Netflix!  
-I attended a Halloween animal charity dinner auction and went as Frida Kahlo!  I'm at about 2 min, 53 secs here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wFtoK67mIKo
-Modern Family night with friends is a thing again, although it is now called Super Fun Night because of that ridiculous[ly stupid] show on afterwards.
-I Netflix-binged on "Lost" and finished the last episodes on Sunday, which meant I was crying for about three hours that day....
-I made an amazing chicken alfredo with broccoli last week.  This week I made a cheddar, broccoli, and bacon grilled cheese.
-I've eaten a lot of ice cream.
-This weekend I did a major house cleaning and washed/folded about six loads of laundry.  That's a big deal for me.
-I turned 26.  Boo.
-I signed on to do some crafts for our shelter's holiday tree to be displayed/entered in a contest at a local mall.
-Last Monday, I took my fosters to the adoption center.  By Saturday when I went to visit, Zoey and Teegan had already been adopted.  I spent some time with Phoebe, cried, and came this//close to adopting her.  Knowing I wouldn't be able to provide her with the most ideal home (the dogs...), I resisted.    I loved them all, but I'll admit I had a soft spot for her especially.  It was hard saying goodbye....  I hope she gets her furever home soon.

-I've got a big source/cite research project to complete by Friday; of course, I've had it for over a month and not started it yet....
-I hit the jackpot today.  No, not the money kind.  The nerdy dog trainer kind.  Check it out! Here's a shout out to Lexis Advance!  Their elastic keychain things make the ***perfect*** clicker lanyards!  They fit great over my wrist, or I can snap them to leashes, treat bags, belt loops, etc.  I was a little too excited about them, so my Lexis rep gave me a whole bag.  Nice!  Now I can go buy about 30 more clickers!  (Just kidding... sort of.)  And errr, that water bottle is just there because I <3 it.  I've got three of them now, and I don't know what I did for water before Lexis came along and started handing them out.  And yes, given the choice, I will use Lexis over Westlaw; in my opinion, (and if the below proof isn't enough) their perks are way better than Westlaw's.  (Sorry Westlaw.  You might redeem yourself if you handout actual clickers.)

Anyways, I think that about does it.  Mostly, I had to post today to show off my Lexis loot.  I will add a few more photos (and maybe reread/edit ;) later when photobucket stops being a PITA.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Lamb Sheet and Banana Cream Torte

Soooo, it was someone's eleventh birthday on Sunday, and I kind of ended up spoiling her in oh-so-many ways.  Two of those ways were her special dinner and dessert.  Now, I don't think my dogs will ever turn their noses up to something homemade, but I really do think she adored the Lamb Sheet.

And yes, I'm calling it Lamb Sheet.  Personally, I think lamb is disgusting.  I had to cover my nose every time I handled the lamb, and my house wreaked while this stuff was in the oven.  The things I do for love.

How does one make Lamb Sheet when one isn't a sheep?  Granted, I didn't measure anything, but the following should give you similar results:

1 lb of ground lamb
2 eggs
1/2 c old fashioned oats
1 chopped apple
1/2 c small curd cottage cheese (I should add I also hate cottage cheese, so this recipe was doubly nasty for me.)

Mix all of that slop together and pat it into a quarter baking sheet to about 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick.  Bake at 350F for about 50 minutes.  Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.  

I cut mine into dog bones with a cutter, but you can cut into squares post roasting, shape/cut however pre-roasting, or do what I'll do with the left overs, pinching bits off as I go with training.

For the sides, I just roasted sliced carrots and yellow squash from my garden, with diced sweet potatoes and coconut oil, wrapped in a foil pouch, in the oven with the lamb for about 40-50 minutes.

Banana Cream Torte

Okay, I cheated with this one.  Surprise!  I quartered a cinnamon banana pancake that I whipped up Saturday morning, and layered it with a halfies mixture of cream cheese and blueberry yogurt.  

I was brave enough to not use a recipe for the pancakes or measure anything, so if you want to use your own recipe, go for it!  If you want to see if the chit I made was any good, feel free to try the following.  Conveniently, if you hate the pancakes, they're dog friendly!  Oh, and if you're purposely making these for your pooch, subbing 1/2 c or so apple sauce for the sugar would be a nice move. 

1/2 c whole wheat flour
1/8 c sugar
1 egg
<1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of Salt
1 tsp vanilla
1/8-1/4 tsp cinnamon
Milk... whatever it takes to get it pancake consistency.
Banana slices

Pour your batter on a hot pan (I used butter, but had I known I would be giving some to Soph, I would have used a healthier oil), lay your banana slices into the batter, sprinkle some cinnamon/sugar mixture over this side before flipping, and then flip to finish cooking.  That recipe made three or four six inch pancakes.  I'll admit, something seemed amiss with it, but it was totally edible.  I wish I had whipped up some cream for them (for me)....

Happy Tasty Tuesday!
Champ's Mom

Monday, October 7, 2013

Sophie's Birthday in Four Parts

Here are the promised photos from Sophie's 11th birthday yesterday!  Check back tomorrow for recipes for her birthday dinner and dessert!

Part One: Walk to and through the Park

 My goodness, she has an old lady face here!

Part Two: Trip to the Pet Store and Home with her Loot

Part Three: Dessert.  Yes, I served this first.  It's a doggy banana cream torte!

Part Four: Dinner!  Lamb Sheet "Bones" with Roasted Veggies

Happy Monday Mischief!  (Spoiled counts for mischievous, right?!)
Sophie's Mom

Snoopy's Dog Blog

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Happy Birthday Sophie!

My sweet girl turned eleven today!  

Check back tomorrow for birthday pics!

Happy B&W Sunday!

Saturday, September 28, 2013


Hey Guyzzzzzz!
Mom started a Pinterest account!  Her page is crocker87.  Naturally, there will be pics of us, pics of other cute things, pics and recipes for food, dog training stuff, and more!

Licks & Wags,

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Setter Saturday

I've finally started expanding Elsie's world.  First up was the pet store trip.  Yesterday was Home Depot, one of our favorite non-doggy errands.

We actually had an important mission at the store.  Our vinyl picket gate is broken--has been broken since we bought the house.  That was fine until a couple weeks ago, some neighbors' damn cat started coming over to drink from our pond.  Now, I like cats.  I do.  I've got three little kittens I'm fostering right now.

But this guy a) pisses Champ off big time and b) has a questionable skin condition going on--could be fleas/flea allergies since he's wearing an [old] flea collar, could be mange, could just be allergies, but I don't wanna test these theories out.  I've been the neighborhood bitch chasing him off, but he just does not belong here.  I wish his owners would a) take him inside--winter's comin' and all-- b) treat him properly for fleas and get him some damn meds for his skin infection and c) provide him with some fresh water which he's clearly lacking.

Okay, so I didn't mean to rant on about that.  But anyways, the point being, Elsie and I needed to go get some pvc/plastic suitable adhesive to put the gate back together.  We got the glue.  Now I just need to commit to a house project that I've only managed to put off for two years. Woops.

Here are some photos of Else at Home Depot.  She did awesome.  There were two other dogs there, and while I'm not 100% sure she actually saw them since I was proactive about changing routes (no silly treat bag on me yesterday), if she did see them, she didn't react!  Probably a fluke, I know, but I'll take it!

Standing nicely!

Watching the bees.  Stung at least twice in the last month and still hasn't learned.

Doing some attention exercises while we waited for assistance inside.

On another note, I took Sophie to the farmers' market this morning.  No pics, but I do have to share what she did.  Now, understand, Sophie is my easiest, least-crazy dog to take out and about.  Kids, people reaching to pet her without asking, no problem.  Walking reasonably on a leash, no problem.  Dogs barking at her, no problem.  Standing at my side while I'm doing something, usually no problem.

Well, right after I bought my eggs at a small rancher's stand, the vendor went to grab the dog bones out of the freezer for me to look at.  I honestly don't know if Sophie heard me talk about dog bones and just got excited or what went through her head.  But as soon as he turned around, she tried to leap right up onto his table-acting-as-counter!  WTH?!  She was in her Hurtta harness and her leash was fairly short (to keep her a bit of a distance from the booth to begin with), so I was able to stop her mid air.  In the process of landing, though, her front paw caught on his booth sign (the flexible/tarp-like fabric sign)--no damage, but I did apologize to him and say that she tried to take it out.  He just laughed.

And he wasn't the only one laughing.  Not me. Two groups who had been walking by behind us saw her in action and actually paused to laugh, in good fun, I'm sure.  But sheesh.  Did she have to go and act like she's a wild child just then?  Way to make an impression, Missy.  Sigh.  My crazies.

Anyways, aside from that, she acted like a proper lady, got lots of compliments, and enjoyed her walk.  Afterwards, we stopped by the pet store, where again, she was a proper lady and decided she was just too good for a treat that the employees offered her....

So that's all for tonight!  Thanks for stopping by!
Champ's Mom and her crazies