everything takes too much time

Like everyone else there are too many things I want to do with my time.

Before last week’s camp I made a list of all the chores and activities I wanted to fit into my week. Swimming, water aerobics, fixing camp dinners, doing lunch-break workshops (more on those later), running to Marietta for groceries, running to Watertown for ice and beer, fostering Mercy, blogging, completing paperwork, packing the truck for Saturday’s trial, grooming dogs, working dogs, housework and laundry were all on that list.

Then I made a schedule in which I tried to fit all the most important elements. It all looked possible, on paper.

First thing to be dropped, in favor of assisting campers and arranging to feed everyone, was swimming and water aerobics. Second thing to be dropped was blogging.

Frankly, I checked my blog page daily, looked at my stats, thought about writing something, and withdrew from the site from shear exhaustion. Blogging involves about 30 minutes of focus on the events of the day and some days I just don’t have the time to think about what I have to do.

I’m going to try to do better because I want a continuous record of what happens in my life and what I think about it. For folks who are reading, I want to help with training. I had an elderly student last weekend who said, “I looked at the 2-Minute Dog Trainer stuff but it was all about camps and your foster dog.” Well, of course, she wasn’t looking at the 2-Minute Dog Trainer stuff so much as she was reading my blog.

So my blog should contain at least a little 2-Min.D.T. stuff. By the way, Bud’s blog is going to be addressing his training protocols with Hickory (“Kory” for short), Bud’s soon-to-be BC puppy. I’m told I may do any obedience or rally I wish with this puppy but I’m going to try something new … his name for obedience and rally is going to be “Hick” while Bud calls him “Kory” for agility. Let’s see just how clever this little boy can be …

The name was my idea. Bud’s used golfing terms for his dogs since the days of Bogie and Birdie. But these days he’s enthralled with TREES and hasn’t picked up a golf club since I’ve known him. So I suggested we have an exercise of namin’ nuts (from “Best In Show”) — and this first nut is going to be named Hickory. <g>

In other news — I was very excited at the opportunity to present lunch-break workshops during camp weeks. These workshops were to cover several “intro” topics including:  rally, 2-Min.D.T., tracking, etc.  I also offered obedience for agility (not popular, though most campers needed this topic the most IMO).

The workshops were designed to take 45 minutes of campers’ 2-hour lunch break. These lengthy lunch breaks were originally set up so people could chill and rest before the afternoon’s activities. Before arriving for camp everyone seemed eager to fill that time with dog training rather than rest. After arriving at camp reality set in.

Out of the 3 available days for workshops last week’s campers ended up working during just 2 lunch breaks. I discovered a couple of interesting things about these workshops … 1) nobody wanted to pay extra for extra training, except 1 camper who paid twice the published rate so I’d stay and teach,  and  2) at least half the campers had other plans for lunch, even though they’d originally stated they would stay and train.

It was also more than a little uncomfortable listening to 10 minutes of excuses, reasons why they weren’t staying to train, during the time allotted to the training itself. In the end, my 15 minutes of preparation and 45 minutes of instruction turned into 90 minutes of work, times 2 days.

And, in the end, I was preaching to the choir since everyone who actually was fairly new to obedience and agility training left the building at lunch. Soooooooooo … you guessed it … lunch-break workshops are no more.

I’ll continue to offer private lessons but with a clear definition of WHO wants the lesson and WHAT topic they wish to address. In the meantime, I’ll put my “obedience for agility” sermon on hold once again. I’ll watch from the sidelines as agility enthusiasts apply mediocre-to-horrendous training to the task.

In the meantime, at last Saturday’s trial, I was pleased to see that my girls had 3-4-obstacle lead-outs in their reperitoire, as well as pretty steady table performances.

In other news, Mercy was delivered to the Humane Society of Parkersburg this morning at 7:15 for her trip to Pennsylvania to join a rescue group. I had to push myself to drive away without her. My DNA contains elements of hoarding, judging from my family, so I have to quiet those demons who whisper that no dog will be completely happy unless it’s living with me.

I just doesn’t make sense after looking at the task list above and know that, for several weeks, “grooming dogs” and “training dogs” and “walking dogs” have all been neglected for housework, meal prep, swimming, fostering, and blogging.

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2 Responses to “everything takes too much time”

  1. Erica Says:

    Oh please don’t discard your lesson plans for the lunchtime workshops – they can be put to good use in just a few short days with a group I am certain will be receptive! Two hours of downtime for a dyed-in-the-wool Type A is painful!

  2. Amanda Says:

    I expressed interest in one topic but was admittedly just too wrung out to follow through since it came up the first day of camp. I apologize for having made you go through prep and then not following through. It’s one of those things that sounds like a great idea until you get to lunchtime and realize just how wiped out you are.

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