Saturday, May 10, 2008

Great Friends

I guess this is sort of a special weekend because today I’d like to take the time to say “Was Up” to our old neighbours, who also are some very dear and genuine friends of ours. Of course I am talking about Ivonne (& the whole dog crew) and Joni (& her 2 girls).

Ivonne used to help us with Alih & Carlos, she was my boyz day-care mommy. Also, big thank you for letting me stay with you on all my trips to L.A. last year.

Both Ivonne and Joni helped us so tremendously much when we moved from LA, thank you so much!

Joni has helped us with lots after we moved too, taking care of our mail and helping us with all kinds of stuff... I really don’t know what we would have done without you, Joni. I cannot thank you enough for being such an amazing friend!

And, a very big thank you to Susanne, Brian & family for taking such good care of me last summer/fall/winter... I more or less moved in with you guys since I had to make all those trips to LA, and I am deeply grateful for your hospitality.

To all of you guys – THANK YOU! You are the best friends one could ever ask for.

With Love – always!

Below are some pics of my "fish-boy" from this morning. The life vest came on today as he keeps swimming far out in the lake.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Shout Out

Today, I’d like to give a special shout out to my great friend Super P. who lives in L.A. Why? Because she’s fabulous and I miss her. =) Super P. has 2 very cool doggies by the name of Cosmo & Eddie.

Alih, Carlos and Cosmo more or less grew up together. And before Carlos came in to our lives, it was Cosmo who acted as Alih’s back-up when he got himself in trouble in the dog parks. =) Super P. and I would take our boys on some wonderful hikes in the Santa Monica Mountains and in the Malibu Mountains on the weekends... Or if not hiking, we would meet up at the beach in the early mornings (at 6 A.M.) to let the dogs enjoy themselves. They'd run in and out of the Pacific Ocean, totally loving it.

Eddie and James have never met since both of them came in to our respective lives after Mr. L. and I moved from L.A. However, I believe they would become instant friends as both are wild and crazy. Too bad we don’t live near each other anymore, Paty. ...but maybe one day they will get to meet anyway. Who knows!!! Jay is in the process of getting a passport so maybe he wants to make a trip to the States and LA one day. =)

ps. I'm waiting on that blog... hihi

To Super P. and everybody else - I WISH ALL OF YOU A WONDERFUL WEEKEND!


From the left: Eddie, Super P. & Cosmo.

Cosmo & Eddie. (Cosmo has some scares as he was struck by a car at a young age).

Thursday, May 08, 2008

James = Fish

We have some wonderful weather and I am stuck inside working on the thesis. Oh well, what to do! I am not a sun worshiper anyways but most Swedes are. People all around the city have already put on their bikinis or shorts. I’m like: “yeah, yeah we got some heat but dude, it ain’t that warm outside. Put some clothes on before you catch a cold”.

Anyhow, I got to enjoy the nice weather this morning when James and I went for a nice long walk; we also squeezed in some training. I can already see improvements in him since our obedience class the other night which makes me very happy. The new tactic works.

Hopefully I’ll have time to do some tracking with him tonight. We missed last week’s tracking class since we were at the Dog Show, and so far (this week) I have not laid any tracks for him. I have to, I have to.

Last night we went to the lake again. This time James remembered how much fun it was to swim, so he swam the entire time almost. In the beginning it was nothing fish-like about him, but after a while his strokes became better and better. I’m tellin’ you – by the end of this summer this boy will be as smooth in the water as a fish. He’s not afraid at all; he literally throws himself in the lake, and while swimming he even sticks his head under the water. The question is – is he fearless or does he have a screw loose? Or maybe it’s a little bit of both. =)

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Surfing the Net!

I was just surfing the net and coincidentally ran in to Cyrus. Talk about a big ass Pit Bull or what? You can see more pics of him and his kennel mates on

I also discovered this weekend is Wango Tango in LA, on May 10th to be more specific! I WANT TO GO!!! I've had a blast there in the past! Anyone who has the opportunity, get tickets... go see it! I seriously doubt you would get disappointed. You get to see all the most popular artists/singers as of today perform 2 or 3 songs each. And it goes on from morning to late at night!! Lots and lots of fun!!!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008


We went to a lake last night for the dogs to enjoy themselves. My parents came with, as did my grandfather who lives in the area. The dogs had a wonderful time, even old man Alih ran around like as if he was 2 years old again. This evening also turned in to a big night for young man James. He took his first swim!!! He has taken a couple of dips before but never swam. Water was splashing around him like as if he was some sort of elephant. We laughed our butts off... he looked absolutely hilarious! It was my dad who through his ball too far out in the lake ... and Jay wanted his ball back badly. He whined for awhile and was almost about to give up, when all of a sudden he through himself in the water and started swimming towards the ball. I thought I would have to run in and get him, I did not think he would be able to stay above water but he did. It was nothing smooth about his strokes AT ALL, but he did it! With lots of practice this summer, the baby blue will turn in to a superb swimmer, you watch!

Tonight was our obedience class which was much more successful than last week’s as there were no female dogs in heat tonight. We learned a few new things, so overall we had a great evening! It is such a nice and rewarding feeling when one can tell we are progressing. I believe James has great potential as he is both bright and eager to work.

Tonight I also learned that I can be tougher on him. I don’t know why I haven’t been as tough on him as I was with Alih and Carlos. I think it might be because he is so much smaller, I fool myself thinking he is a sensitive little man, when in fact he’s a tough man who can deal with a firmer hand. I have always been very consistent with him but as our instructor explained tonight, he is older now and he should know these things, therefore I should be tougher on him. When I changed my tactics, he did excellent. He was very alert and would not miss a step or move I made.

Other than dogs, dogs, dogs I am currently working hard on getting the thesis done. We have a couple of more weeks to go until our first thesis defence, and after that, another week until our final examination defence is being held. It is going to be so darn nice when this is over. I am dead tired of it by now.
Well good people, I am signing off for tonight. Please enjoy some pics from last night.

Bye, bye.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Picture Bomb

James: "Hellooooo, hiiiiii, can anyone see me???????????"

Below are a couple of pics of my athletic son... he's a soccer player, or so he thinks! =) Needless to say, it only took him a few minutes to destroy that ball.

Above pic: Soooo Adorable!

Above pic: "Why are you laughing at me?? What's wrong"???

Above pic: Me, looking like a freak, trying to stack James at the show.

Above pic: "I may be old, but I am still a very handsome man".

Above pic: And the super cute little Vilma. My friend's 4 months old Kerry Blue Terrier.

That's it - you survived the picture bomb! =) Later 'gator!

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Dog Show

We had a rather good show weekend; however a very bright and early one as we got up at 4:30 A.M. on Saturday and at 5:20 A.M. on Sunday... it sure is rough when the alarm goes off but once up, it’s alright. After a shower I was all awake and ready to rumble. =)

The ring judge was Senor Alberto Valesco and the Amstaffs were set to begin, which meant that James was first up. As we were “warming up” our handler said James ran well with me and that it would be better if I showed him myself. First I was like: “hell no”... but after a few seconds I felt like: “well, I have to have my first time at some point”... so I decided to do it. I felt alright as James and I entered the ring but the “OK feeling” was pretty much gone once it was our “alone time” with the judge. I did a horrible job stacking James. I mean, I am not claiming to be good at it at any time, but I sure can do it better when not nervous. It is called Lack of Experience, people!!! Ahhhh, I could feel myself not doing what I should have done, or what I would have done at home, and of course it effected James. Since I did not stack him properly his top line was off thus the comment (see further down). Had I not messed up, my Gorgeous Baby Blue would have won (I believe). But oh well... what to do. It does feel good that I have one show under my belt (it can only get better from here=)). We finished 2nd with the following comments:

“excellent head, good moving, can have better topline”

In the last minute the show program had changed and the Amstaff puppies were to be in another ring (than the rest of the Amstaffs) but they were not due until after all the Bedlington Terriers and all the Staffordshire Bull Terriers had been shown which meant that 56 dogs were ahead of us. This translated to a long waiting time for us, as we still came to the show early considering it is excellent training for James. Upon arrival we set up at ring 3 where the other Amstaffs were going to be shown. Our handler had 2 other dogs to show in this ring so we watched them, and both did well. Congratulations!

Since the ring had changed for us, it also meant we got a different judge than originally planned. We got a Finish judge by the name of Tuire Okkola. My God was this woman meticulous and thorough; she had the measuring tape out and took her sweet old time with every single dog. Sure, it is good she takes her time (unlike the Spanish judge yesterday who rushed through every dog in no time) but come on... I am sitting here waiting... =) Well by around 1 P.M. it was finally James’ turn to enter the ring. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Our handler (Marina) did an EXCELLENT job with James. For a while he looked a bit timid as he was stacked in front of the judge's table, but Marina took her time with Jay so he could relax and she got him stacked perfectly. He looked so good, my perfect little baby! =) James came 1st (well I have to be honest, he was alone in his age group today which kind of sucked but it sure sounds good saying he won!!!) LOL. The judge really liked James but felt he was a bit too high (he measured 51 cm). Some judges are really picky with the height, but comparing James with other Amstaff puppies he’s shorter than most (he’s our little low-rider). But oh well. All judges are different and look for different things. As the judge spoke Swedish we got our critic in Swedish so first comes the comments in Swedish, with a translation in English underneath:

“Välutvecklad 8 månaders hanvalp som redan nu är över idealmåttet. Välutvecklad kropp. Huvud i bra balans med kroppen. Stora öron, fint bett. Fin blå, djupblå färg. Fina tassar. Rör sig utmärkt för åldern. Välvisad. Bra benstomme”.

And in English it sounds like this:
“Well-developed 8 month old male puppy who is already now over the ideal height. Well-developed body. Head in good balance with the body. Big ears, nice bite. Nice deep-blue color. Nice paws. Moves excellent for his age. Well Shown. Good bone-structure”.

I would like to give our handler, Marina, a big THANK YOU for being so nice and for showing James the best possible way. He looked fabulous in the ring! THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

A very dear friend of mine came to the show today as well... she came to see us and to show us her little puppy. A little 4 months old Kerry Blue Terrier by the name of Vilma. She was so adorable and so tough. James liked her but considering Jay is quite rough with his play, we were careful that he would not scare her. Not that I believe he could have, as tough as that little lady was! =) It will be fun for James to play with her as she gets older. We are looking forward to that, and thank you Gabbi for coming today. Hope to see you soon again!

I have not had time to go over any pics yet, if there are any good ones from the show I will post them tomorrow. That’s it for today, folks! I hope all of you had a wonderful weekend, wherever in the world you may be. Take care... Ciao!