Thanks for the good luck wishes

They must`ve worked! 

Nina was expertly presented by pro handler Chrystal Murray - whom Nina loves.  She`s now Champion pointed and well on her way to her Championship!!  I`m crazy busy over the next 2 weeks and apologize for not being quick to respond to comments and emails - just wanted to let everyone know I appreciate hearing from you so much!  

Knitting posts to come - honest - lest you all thing this has turned into a poodle blog!!  Poodles and Wool do go so well together though...


Happy Hallowe'en

How did it get to be the last weekend of October already? Fall has been flying by. I won't be around the blog (or home for that matter) for the next 2 or 3 weeks much - off every weekend to dog shows with Ms. Bella Nina. Nina is fluffed, buffed and ready to roll with me before dawn tomorrow morning for her first ever dog show. She's 7 months old already, looking very grown up.  No - won't be sporting her pink elastic horns in the show ring, but I'm sure her halo will be showing.  Wish us luck.
Wishing everyone a very Happy Halloween.  Have fun and enjoy some candy!


Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

I absolutely love this!  Sending it out to all the amazing women I know and have yet to meet for whom I am all thankful for.  Especially my mom and daughter.  This Thanksgiving I'm most thankful for family, friends and what each new day brings.

Wishing you all a great day!  Renee


S'more cupcakes

These are decadent.  Oh ~ so good!  Recipe can be found HERE

I brought 2 dozen of them to class to celebrate this

My comments on this recipe:  the cupcake itself is really wonderful and one I'll bake again.  The batter is watery and runny - but like the recipe says - it's ok and will bake up nicely.  They did.  Light and firm, tasty and tastes like homemade - very very good!

The icing recipe says it makes enough for 30 cupcakes - the recipe makes 24 cupcakes.  Truth is the icing makes enough for probably 60 or 70 cupcakes!  Even halfing it would be far too much.  I found the icing too sweet for my liking.  The first time I try a recipe I follow the directions as written.  Next time I'll drop the sugar added to 1/3 or 1/4 of recommended and 1/2 the marshmallows. The icing texture is wonderful - light and fluffy, just way too rich for me.
I grated some of the graham crackers over the icing and had no problem making the graham wafers and chocolate stand up in it.  These look even better than they photograph and are going into my recipe file, with the tweeking of the icing.  The cupcakes themselves would be great topped with whip cream and berries, how I plan to serve them next time.

If you like s'mores, you'll love these cupcakes!   They were a big hit at class.  I'm giving them a big thumbs up.  What's your favourite cupcake?  I'm looking for new recipes, I'd love it if you'd share your best with me.  :)

Be well, be happy and take care!  Renee



Piper completed her title yesterday with a big smile on her poodle face to match the thrilled one on mine.  As one of the judges told me when we left the ring after one of her qualifying scores, "Steak for supper for that poodle!"  Thank you Piper, you are an amazing partner!  

It's been a long journey with Piper to reach this level in her training and trialing.  An up and down hill journey with the excitement of new skills learned, friendships gained, exercises mastered and confidences (often) humbled.  Piper and I suffered through fear and guilt when she was attacked and hurt, a re-building of trust and confidence to keep her safe from other dogs in the sport, happiness and tears at moments when the light goes on -- when clarity and understanding sinks in.  She's had big wins, High in Trials and left me pleased and thrilled with our performance even on the days when we failed to qualify.  Piper never stops trying and works her heart out for me.  She 'makes me want to be the person my dog thinks I am'- as the saying goes.  As much as my life has been molded by my parents, mentors, friends, and teachers - it also has by the animals I've shared time with.

Training to this level creates bonds in many different relationships.  My dog of course, she knows me better than I know her.  My coach, mentor and friend Marie Sawford who brought us from Novice A to OTCh.  The supportive and amazing help from class and school mates at Companion Dog Training, those I've traveled to compete with and set up at trials beside to spend the weekend, other trainers we've met at shows and trials from Canada and the United States.  And especially my dearest and most wonderful friends in the dog world - those women and their dogs that are the "inner circle" of my friends.  Hugs to you and thank you for the support and your friendship.  Your being who you all are--  I can't measure the value or be thankful for enough.  There are far more of you than I can mention without forgetting anyone, but especially Pat, Andrea, Dawn T, and the SPW:  Dawn N, Cheryl, and Vivienne and all your amazing dogs.  I've learned so much from you all in so many different aspects of dogs, family and friendships.  I thank you.

Piper and I will continue our journey with no specific plans for her Excellent, Master and Grand Master title that follow her Obedience Championship - we'll take it one step at a time just as we have to this point and see how far the journey will take us in that direction.  As long as we're having fun we'll continue.  After reaching this point, the rest is just more icing on an already over the top cake.

Thank you mostly to my wonderful and 'Sweety Pie' girl Piper, you've taught me so much and made me a more understanding, patient and feeling person.  Who knew a poodle could do so much?  I do now.  And to my training buddies in the Tuesday night Utility class - there'll be cake to celebrate tomorrow!

Renee & OTCh Ravendune Piping Hot RE AGN CGN HIC(s) RNMCL aka 'Piper' or The Princess Pie

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