Our first agility camp 2009

This past weekend we had so much help from our local agility enthusiasts with spring clean-up! Tracy and Zack Waite came on Friday to sweep the floor and walls in the training building — it looked fantastic!  Then Maggie and Mark Paskawych arrived on Saturday and spent several hours picking up deadwood and chain sawing downed trees. Vicki Davis arrived mid-afternoon and weed-whacked for many hours.

The place looks really fantastic and will be much easier to keep mowed now that the high weeds and deadwood are cleared. Bud and I created a firepit last Thursday, cleaning up the area just south of our garage door, so that major project can be checked off our list.

Today is the first day of our first agility camp and we’re having beautiful spring weather. With fostering Mercy there was less time on Friday and Saturday for my spring cleaning in the house. I kept putting it off so I ended up in a cleaning frenzy on Sunday morning.

Sunday was packed with dog training and welcoming guests, as well as a bit of management for Mercy. We had our usual noon-to 4:00 agility workshops and, just to add excitement, I scheduled a 1-hour private lesson in rally-o for the morning. That meant the sweeper got left in the middle of the living room floor during afternoon workshops.

There’s not enough interest in obedience and rally from local people for me to establish group classes so I eliminated group classes and only do private lessons in obedience and rally. There’s actually more value for the buck for the student this way. No standing around …

After my beginner workshop where the dogs worked up to sequences 5-6 obstacles long (they’ve progressed really fast!) I broke away from workshops to do my chambermaid duties on one of the cottages.

Two new students had attended the advanced agility workshop, buying the cottage package (they arrived Saturday afternoon, walked their dogs, went into Marietta for dinner, had a 1-hour private lesson with Bud, stayed in a cottage, visited the pond Sunday morning, and attended the Sunday afternoon workshop).

Since we had campers arriving late afternoon the upper cottage (blue cottage) had to be cleaned and beds stripped and remade before Julie and Amanda moved into it for camp week. Interesting note — 4 days ago I was cleaning that cottage and wondering if the propane would hold out for another week. It was about 45 degrees with overnight lows in the 30s. The past 2 days have seen temps in the high 80s to 90s, so I guess my worries were unnecessary.

At 3:45 I scooped up Mercy and took her for an outing to agility class. She greeting everyone with a tremendous butt wiggle and crooked smile. I returned to the house to finish my cleaning and my Mom showed up to help.  We both hate dusting but Mom dived into it with the enthusiasm one always has for attacking someone else’s dirt.

The dust bunnies are a thing of the past.

Later Nathan Vincent arrived to help us with picking up branches that had fallen in our spring ice storm. He stopped by the house on his way home to let us know he’s the new president of his 4H club and he wants to put together a kids-and-agility outing here. Last year we had 2 kids work days and, in return for participating, they got a 2-day outing for themselves and their dogs, complete with weiner roast, pizza party, and 2 nights in cottages.

It was great fun for everyone and we’re looking forward to repeating it again this summer when everyone’s schedules thin out. Nathan has made it his project to set up this summer’s outing and it’s in good hands with him.

Bud showed Nathan how to swat at carpenter bees, which is highly gratifying. Between them they killed an additional 5-10 bees. When you live in a wooden house you hate wood-eating creatures.

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