Saturday, January 9, 2010

Night Ski

Friday night was nice and cold.

Cold snow is fast snow.  That's what they say.

... well, I think that's what they say.

So I went skiing at the Brown County Golf Course.


Yeah, I know they're not very nice and clear.  It was wicked dark, and I can only hold perfectly still for so long.  These took excessively long exposure times to get. 

It certainly was cold, but it felt really good. 

When I was done, I stopped at the Safari Steakhouse bar for a little Cheesecake action...


And skipped all the way home.

... well, in my head I did, anyway

Love ya like a night ski,

Friday, January 8, 2010

Clicker - Blunders

As I explained yesterday, Lilly and I struggled on our first attmept at "get it".  But, we're getting better. 

This video is a great example of why taking video of sessions is a good idea.  I made LOTS of mistakes.  Watching them for myself after the fact is a great way to learn from those mistakes.

The session we had later last night before I went to work was really great, though.  We'll have another after I go skiing.  Hopefully we can keep up the good progress.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Clicker - Touch

Lilly and I have begun clicker training recently.  It's as challenging for me as it is for her.  It really gives the 'ol brain a work out.  I have to find ways to get her to understand what I want her to do... and then she has to try to figure out what the heck it is I'm trying to tell her.

Here's a quick video of her learning "touch" with a target stick.  I probably used too many repetitions with it, but I'm still working on getting my timing down and she is still working on figuring out how this whole thing works.

Last night she and I had a very frustrating night.  I'm trying to get her to learn to "get it" (essentially a retrieve) so that eventually I can teach her article discrimination (essentially telling her to "get XYZ" and she will be able to choose it from a handful of toys/articles on the floor and retrieve it).  Anyway, Lilly is no lab.  She's just recently started picking up a ball at the dog park in order to play keep away with the other dogs.  If you throw a ball, she will do a duck and cover.  She's not really into retrieving.  But, since she's willing to pick stuff up I figured article discrimination would be a good idea for her mental stimulation.  Last night I attempted to get her to pick up a ball.  It didn't go well.  Perhaps as a result of the target stick, she pushed everything with her nose and just refused to pick it up.  We did get somewhere with her taking a treat ball from me, but the distraction of the treat ball caused her to (at least I think) pay no attention to what the reward was for.

Then, this afternoon... BREAK THROUGH!  She came running into the living room with a squeaky ball in her mouth.  I got on the floor and tossed it a couple feet for her a few times and when she ran after it and grabbed it I rewarded like nobody's business.  We got out the clicker and treats and for a while she ignored the ball.  She would just sit and stare at me - not a clue what to do to get rewarded.  Eventually, I gave up and stopped paying attention to her.  She got sick of me and went over to pick up the ball and play herself.  CLICK!  Woohoo!  This happend over and over.  After about half an hour she had kinda figured out that if she picks up the ball, she'll get the reward.  It still takes her a bit to figure out - she will walk up to me, sniff around for treats, stare at me, stare at the clicker, I will look at the ball and she will eventually (sometimes I think out of frustration) trot over to the ball to pick it up.  CLICK!  By the time I ended the session, she was pretty consistantly seeking out the ball so she could get her reward.  I think today was important not only in that she started to pick up the ball, but also because she is figuring out that her best shot for reward is to try different things until she figured out what I want.  I can tell now she's beginning to offer behaviors in attempt to guess what I want, which is wonderful!  YAY for Lilly!  (and yay for me begining to figure out how to get her to figure it out... or something like that)

Oh, and YAY for Bailey being such a good boy and laying down when I ask him so she can do her homework.  Maybe tonight we'll try and take video of another session.



Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Happy Food

Some people call it comfort food.  To me, that seems like a strange way of putting it.
What if I don't need to be comforted?

I prefer to refer to it as Happy food.  Well, because it just makes me wicked happy.

This is my ultimate Happy food.  I remember my Mom making this once when I was sick.  It might have been after I had ear surgery, I'm not sure.  It was literally a big dose of happy in a bowl.  I don't know where exactly the recipe came from, but I do know I've never seen it anywhere since.

This recipe is also great of you end up with this:


They're not moldy yet, but they're sure not nice and soft anymore either.  That means they're perfect for bread pudding.  If you let bread get hard just so you have an excuse to make this... it's ok, I won't tell.

Queen's Bread Pudding

4c toasted bread cubes
1qt hot milk  (1qt = 4c)
3tbsp butter
4 eggs separated
1 dash salt
1c sugar
1/2tsp vanilla

1/4c sugar (meringue)
2tsp grated lemon peel
1/2c jam

Mix bread cubes, milk, butter, & vanilla and let soak for 10 min.
Beat egg yolks & salt until light.  Add 1c sugar & beat until lemon colored.
Mix together bread mixture and egg mixture.
Pour into 2qt buttered baking dish.
Bake at 350 for 50 minutes.


I know, it looks delicious already.  But just wait... it's about to get crazy in here!

Now spread the jam on top.


PSA:  Remember... Buy local, people!  It's delish... and it's a good thing to do.

I love these from Wild Rose, WI.  I found them at Woodman's.

Now for the Meringue!
Beat the snot out of the egg whites and 1/4c sugar.


If you went to the Shirley cooking school, you will know that these are the perfect stiff peaks for Meringue.

If you happen to actually have lemon peel to mix in, that's great.  Or, you could just be like me and cheat by just putting a couple drops of lemon juice in the mix instead.  :o)


Now, bake at 350 for about 10 more minutes.  Until tips are a lovely golden brown.



Love ya,

Monday, January 4, 2010


I used to be less than a fan of Huskies.  They're built to work, and they need to work hard and play hard... daily.
Simply put, they aint no couch potatoes!

I'm coming around, though.  I'm beginning to appreciate the energy that rubs off of them.  If you're willing to soak it up, they're more than happy to keep throwing it at you.

Well, that, and the fact that in my great attempt to stop hating winter I've discovered mushing.
The Husky's specialty.

For more widgets please visit

Lilly likes Huskies, too.  She knows they like to run.  A LOT.  Lilly likes to run, too.  A LOT.


This is Bear.  Bear likes to run with Lilly... if she could just stop trying to bite him in the ass.
He doesn't really get what that's all about.

Take note of Bear's beautiful markings.

You know what Lilly looks like.  Pretty much all white, with a little dappling on her ears:

God help me is she cute in that coat!

This past summer Lilly apparently got a big idea.
She likes those Huskies so much... maybe it would be fun to LOOK like a Husky, too!


Nice try, Lilly.  Nice try.

Lilly likes to play with Quinn, too.
I sure hope she doesn't one day get the idea to try and become a Quinn twin.  That could be awfully messy...


Lucky for Lilly, Quinn doesn't much mind her affinity for ass biting.

Love ya like a Husky,