Sunday, December 30, 2012

Last Weekend of the Year

Ready or not, new year here we come. Time to reflect and reorganize, clear out for the new year. The weather has been so uncooperative for working dogs on the sheep, for what seems like weeks and weeks.  We have had a ton of rain. Compared to last year when at this time they were talking drought, it feels like we need to build an Ark! Actually it has been a combination of the weather, the short days, and the holidays that has kept us from working with the dogs and sheep. Soon I hope we are going to be back working more often.

The days will only be getting longer, from here on out for a few months anyway.
Saturday brought some drying out, finally...and a chance to work dogs. The dogs were happy; the sheep maybe not so much so...but they survived. 

Ryme has been a bit lame again, not severely, but enough for him to have a layoff. He got to work and he listened well. But he does listen well close at hand. It's when we get at a distance or at an unfamiliar place, where Ryme has problems.

In 2013 I will be looking for ways for Ryme to fit in and do the work he loves, accepting him for what he is.

Coal is now at that mature age of six where we know each other pretty well. And what I know about Coal is that if he is not tuned up on a regular basis, he will get very sloppy. He will not take his proper flanks, he won't stop, and he won't come through on his sheds. We will be tuning this all back up in the coming weeks, because he and I have not done anything with a purpose since the Dunnigan trial.

Setting up the shed with Coal

And Coal takes the split two sheep away.

Ryme cools off.

Isn't this a sad face? Please can't we work again? I promise I will stop this time... 
I had a great dinner and get-together with old friends this weekend. Many laughs where shared. It's so good to get together. The Christmas decorations are going to get put away and the spaces cleared for the new year. A new journal notebook for 2013 needs to be purchased today or tomorrow!
 The weather forecast even looks clear for a few days; that means some cold nights but some chances to dry out a little bit and regroup. We can get back out with the dogs without worrying so much about slipping in the mud. Maybe some more regular blog posts will even re-appear!

Happy New Year to All!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Happy Boxing Day!

Coal looks thru the gate

A very Merry Christmas, Happy Boxing Day, and looking forward to a very Happy New Year for everyone!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Some Photos of the Boys..

My visiting friend was nice enough to take some lovely new photos of the boys...

Chiefie holding court in front of the (gas) fireplace...staying warm on an early December night!

Were I more talented with the computer I would Photoshop a chess set inbetween these two!

Chiefie has claimed the stick and dares anyone else to take it!

Chiefie smiles...

Coal waits at the gate....not necessarily patiently! If you think about it, dogs do a lot of waiting...we could learn some patience from them. :-)

Guess which side of the fence the sheep are on?

Coal going around the sheep to the left.

Coal cooling off in the water tub...amazing how he enters from the right yet always ends up inside the paddock!

Neve has to sample the hay before he allows the sheep to eat it. Just being a good guardian dog and all!

Coal: "LOL! I can't figure out how I got in with the sheep! O.M.G. I guess I might have to go round them up since I'm already in here..."

Ryme brings them smartly across the pasture.

Ryme has them under control taking them to the gate.

Flanking Ryme around on the come bye...

Sheep and a beautiful sky!

Ryme waits...

Ryme looks through the wooden gate...again waiting patiently.

December 23, 2012

Things got a little crazy for me just before Thanksgiving. Some really good times and some down times. My roof leaked during the time I was gone to the Dunnigan trial and ruined a ceiling in my house. Oh my. Out of town guests were on their way and the rooms had to be rearranged so that everyone had a dry place to sleep. I spent Thanksgiving cleaning and sorting and making beds. Whew!  We made it! A few trips were made back and forth to OAK but it was all worth it.

We went shopping in Sonoma and looked at pretty store windows like this one above on the historic Sonoma town square.

We went to Armstrong Woods and walked in the rain and greatly enjoyed the peaceful redwoods and the music of running water through the creeks. Tamales were eaten. Wine was tasted. Lots of fun!

When you have guests from out of town you do a lot of driving...and you look at your normal surroundings with a fresh pair of eyes.

We prepared for Santa Claus' annual visit!

Above is some beautiful holly that was in a planter in front of a shop on Sonoma's square.

I hope everyone is ready for Christmas! I am feeling really blessed despite the ups and downs. My friend took a whole bunch of photos of the boys while she was visiting. I will post new pictures next.

Merry Christmas to all!