The Kwick Journal will take on a new atmosphere dealing with age issues, keeping
                                dogs in shape, duck/goose hunting, our 50+ year marriage and most of all raising a
                                  beautiful little child with special needs. With respect to the dogs it must become
                                                                        simply "Maintenance Mode".
                                May 20, 2013 Kwick Journal entry - Today marks the beginning of a new phase - all
                                four dogs are now officially retired from hunt tests. Training will be pointed toward
                                 maintenance of skills with the emphasis on being ready for fall waterfowl seasons.
                                                Maintenance Mode Archives May-June 2013 (Link)
                                                    Maintenance Mode  Archives July 2013 (Link)
                                                 Maintenance Mode Archives August 2013 (Link)
                                               Maintenance Mode Archives September 2013 (Link)
                                                  Maintenance Mode Archives Oct/Nov 2013 (Link)
                                             Maintenance Mode Archives Nov 2013/Feb 2014 (Link)
                         Nov 27-29 the routine of therapy twice a day is going well - "no gain"
                                     has to be measured carefully....need to avoid thinking about the months it
                                     is going to take......having never had any lengthy health issue before, it has
                                     taken awhile to recognize the time factor element....adjusting and accepting
                                     has finally taken choice.

                                     It's good to be retired and have a loving wife that takes this all in stride. The
                                     only positive about this inconvenience is it's during the winter.....not much
                                     going on anyway.

                          Nov 30 up early (6 am), did shoulder therapy exercises sans pain pills, never thought
                                      taking a shower & getting dressed would be a half hour of aerobic exercises,
                                      new post surgery 1st, I can now scratch my nose with the left hand.
                                      won't be "stepping over" Lylah's security gates anymore, hooked foot and
                                      fell on left knee and right elbow right in front of my wife, scared both of us,
                                      left shoulder protected by instinctive effort to roll away from "crash", in a
                                      few hours the "stingers" were's going to be a long winter

                           Dec 1-2 Ground Hog Daze
note: all four dogs had their Heartgard Plus pill
Dec 3  two weeks after surgery & after one week of therapy = range of motion is on
                                      target, very little to absolutely no muscle initiated torque on shoulder allowed,
                                      basically preventing formation of adhesions, allowing for healing of "altered"
                                      components, maintaining/strengthening nerve/muscle/brain impulses and it is
                                      a very slow process = months.....the "ice machine" goes on for at least 30
                                      minutes after each session, no driving, must sleep in the recliner and wearing
                                      the stabilization sling almost 24/7 (not during therapy/showering), this is quickly
                                      becoming a real "drag".....can't begin to fathom more extensive injuries from
                                      auto or other types of accidents......which means I should not be complaining,
                                      the four dogs have not demonstrated any issues with their lack of activity....not
                                      sure what the long range effect on them will be........except conditioning
                           Dec 4  fog, light rain, dreary day.........right after the Bears, Illinois basketball team,
                                      Blackhawks and Bulls all got beat........Wow! things are on a roll
   the finishing touch to this eventful day was catching stomach flu Lylah brought
                                      home from school

 Dec 5-6 cabin fever is starting to set in....but at least the Bulls beat the Heat last night
                           Dec 7 finally found out why the Website was taking so long to "process" a file when
                                     editing - one of the photos was not stored properly and took a long time to work
                                     back to the home computer files (I think), once stored in the Web file = no more
                           Dec 8 snow
                           Dec 9 snow plow contractor did his thing (not being able to use the snow blower or even
                                     shovel after doing all the removal myself for many years feels weird - but not all
                                     that expensive)
      note: three full weeks since shoulder surgery - typing with both hands on the
                                                     key board and have been off pain meds for over a week, daily therapy
                                                     not all that bad, but wearing the immobilization sling and sleeping in
                                                     a recliner is getting old = progress is good 
                                            note: excellent finish.....Lylah's 4th birthday and Bears win easy
                           Dec 10-16 this winter is becoming a "pain in the behind", can't get out, shoulder surgery
                                     therapy....and a slowly developing problem finally diagnosed as staph infections,
                                     probably due to age and type II diabetes.....Doc is on top of it.....but, I'd rather be
                                     doing something else...then again it is winter and there is nothing else to do but
                                     deal with it, Monday the shoulder doctor may tell me if I can start driving again,
                                     not sure about that though, it has been so cold the van door locks are frozen solid
                                            note: the bulky stabilization sling is gone....... need to wear a basic sling for
                                                     the next two weeks (in more difficult situations like walking outside in
                                                     the snow/ice), with the sling only aspect it can be placed over a winter
                                                     coat which is a great much warmer when picking up the air yard,
                                                     mobility/strength progress is excellent and the best news is my
                                                     driving ban is lifted
                           Dec 17-18 beginning to get the swimming pool up to speed, heating and balancing
                                     chemicals is a fairly easy process while taking the cover off and on may need
                                     some creative thinking (left arm not ready for any pulling, lifting or turning of the
                                     pool cover crank handle)
                                             note: all four dogs' nails need trimming which requires two healthy arms
                           Dec 19-20 two new exercises - upping the ante on flexibility with little work using two
                                     new approaches - one with a pulley system (had "stuff" at home to construct it
                                     it instead of buying one) and a cane....stretching muscles (not building yet) and
                                     allowing shoulder ligament attachments to solidify and shape, pain is a sign of
                                     how far to extend and//or stretch.....noticeable improvements every day and "no
                                     pain no gain" is the therapy mantra
                                             note: icy weather issues today with large amounts of snow tomorrow
                           Dec 21 snow starting later the afternoon with very large amounts predicted, however
                                      present radar suggests the majority will be south of us 
                                             note: got to thinking about the four KwickLabs ages after noticing Daisy
                                                      has what appears to be a small fatty tumor on top of her head, in June
                                                      Taffey will be 14, Kooly 10
, Daisy 9 and Gunny  7...."Time flies!" 
                                                      (puppy late spring of 2015 ?)
                           Dec 22 heavy snow day
                           Dec 23 at 5 pm it is 1 F and feels like
-12 F with about 8" of snow - contractor plowed
                                       driveway out yesterday (not ready to shovel, let alone use the snow blower)
                                              note: therapy exercises becoming more complex and pain is really not
                                                       much of an issue (unless I push it too much)....not wearing sling
                                                       anymore and sleeping in bed (not recliner), can drive, but with snow
                                                       and ice my wife is more than willing to taxi me around
                           Dec 24-31 - weather is consistent = cold, snow with the snow removal contractor billing
                                       at four times - expecting more late today, shoulder issues required modifying
                                       therapy sessions = too much led to soreness a couple of days off not sure if it is
                                       old age or doing too much (probably a little of both) last session of 2013 at the
                                       therapist's today, went driving by myself for the first time since a week before
                                       Thanksgiving (no issues except closing the driver's side door) 
                           Jan 1 heaviest snowfall of the year 7+ inches with more on the way
                                              note: shoulder therapy up until yesterday was almost all waiting on healing
                                                       and stretching, isometric (resistance) has begun with pain the main
                                                       limiting factor.....not all that big of a deal since progress according
                                                       to my therapist is excellent,
twice a week therapy sessions are to
                                                       last about last 12-14 weeks during that time daily exercise routines
                                                       are twice a day......after the therapist is finished it will take several
                                                       months of regular exercise at home to finish....then again I may not
                                                       stop exercising to keep in good shape
                                              note: the engrained habit of picking up the dogs' airing yard immediately
                                                       makes keeping any build up from happening, winter snows make
                                                       now! the only choice no matter how bad the conditions may be
                                              note: weather forecast for the next couple of weeks is not good
                                              note: note: all four dogs had their Heartgard Plus pill
                            Jan 5 aired dogs at 1:30 am with about 9" of snow in the airing yard. it's 19F with a
                                      wind chill of 5F, picking up using a small spot light was fairly quick and easy,
                                      not too sure about Sunday night....wind chill is supposed to be
- 45F  
 Jan 6 Monday = no school for Lylah - ridiculously low wind chills
                                             note: at 10:30 am it is
- 17F with a wind chill of - 43F  
  note: at 5 pm it is - 11F with a wind chill of -33F
                            Jan 7 the plan is to avoid doing much outside - school cancelled again
                                             note: at 10 am it is -8F with a wind chill of -25F
                            Jan 9 at 12:15 am the temperature is -8F with no wind, forecast high of +21F
                                             note: big change in the weather - milder "temps" for at least 10 days
                            Jan 10-13 winter is moving along.....slowly.....snow, ice and cold persist = normal 
                                             note: eight weeks since shoulder surgery, in one way winter is OK
                                             note: bought Taffey a thick foam dog bed for her create, she loves it
                                             note: gave the thin one Taffey had been using to Kooly
                                             note: Taffey will be 14 in June and Kooly is 10.....time flies
  Jan 14-20 more snow and it's cold....however, in less than two weeks it will be
                                       February = short month and headed toward spring
                                             note: last few days have been the "two steps back" part of the "three
                                                      steps" forward with regards to the shoulder therapy process
                                             note: last night Gunny suddenly went into a "nasty" protective mode
                                                      when I removed his food dish after feeding time, lasted about
                                                      two seconds.....let him wind down, removed the empty bowl,
                                                      put him on a short lead and did a loooong OB
                                                      indication of remembering what he did.....and this will always be
                                                      a potential "thing"'s been a couple of years since he last
                                                      exhibited that "issue".....the lack of work this winter hasn't helped
                             Jan 21 disaster struck this morning - after working on the index to this Website, it
                                        was lost after making an inadvertent editing error....big DUH!, it may take
                                        a few days to "shake out the cobwebs", a backup is not easily accessed  ,
                                        all files are stored with a two month old backup available, getting a "day
                                        old" back will save a lot of work........the only good thing is we are buried
                                        in a miserable stretch of January winter - not much else to do
                             Jan 22-3 very cold, snow and the lost Website is back up, good thing GoDaddy
                                        found a way to "find" the main page (index) and it wasn't free
                           Jan 24-5 no change in the weather - deep snow, cold, windy - What 's new?
                                             note: aired dogs around 2 am, Kooly & Gunny were limping around
                                                      after two minutes in the cold snow.....they finished up FAST!
                                                      Taffey has large feet with much hair - didn't phase her at all
                             Jan 26-8 this morning will be
-19F with a wind chill of -37F, school cancelled
                                             note: at 11:30 am it has warmed up....
-4F with a wind chill of -19F
                                             note: weather forecast lows for the next ten days are single digit, so
                                                      much for global warming
                             Jan 9-31 not much new
                                             note: all four dogs had their Heartgard Plus pill
                             Feb 1-5 same weather (lousy) ordered a couple of Avery Ultra Low Dog Hides
                                         after finding out they were discontinued, two bags of Eagle Pack Power
                                         and one of Senior due up for delivery, switched to Heartgard Plus this
                                         month, ordered more Fish Oil and Glucosamine MSM Complex tablets
                                             note: dog nails up to date on Dremel "work" 
                             Feb 6 cold and windy = 0F and
-16F wind chill at 11 am Thursday
                             Feb 7-9 snow depth is presently 16", at 1 pm Sunday it's 16F with a 3F wind
                                         chill....forecast reveals a couple of days with highs in the 30' ten days
                                             note: with all the snow on the ground in the upper midwest coupled
                                                      with a late thaw, the Mississippi River may have serious flood
                                                      issues, move stored duck trailer to even higher ground ??
                                             note: latest regular shipping of dog food arrived from Amazon, less
                                                      expensive and free shipping.......which means delivered
                                             note: finally discovered that my shoulder surgeon & physical therapists
                                                      were not on the same page.....too much....too soon
                              Feb 10-14 February is "hanging tough"
-2F tonight - 2 more weeks until March
                                             note: spent the last few months updating the Website (not much else)
                                             note: finished up rough draft on income tax (no surprises - someone
                                                      else will be spending "my money")
                              Feb 15-19 yesterday marked the first day of any thawing - much more to go and it
                                           won't be much longer before we enter "mud season"
                                             note: the last couple of weeks a new Website page was designed. going
                                                      back and looking through old "journals" and pulling photos from
                                                      storage devices, many were "recalled" and sorted with several
                                                      re-edited, the new photo album page makes viewing and being
                                                      able to reminisce "cool"  KwickLab's "good stuff" photos (link)   
                                             note: next 2 days = 38F sunny and next rain with 43F.......this brief
                                                      interlude of "mild" weather will be followed by eight more days of
                                                      freezing, cold winter with highs mostly in the teens & single digit
                                                      lows....March will come in as a "lion"
Feb 20-23 nothing new - forecast lows below zero March 3,4
                                             note: decreased therapy sessions to once a week, results seem to be
                                                      much better.......still a long way to go....changing an overhead
                                                      light bulb is impossible
                                             note: while working on the photo page (see link above), several photos
                                                      edited using the same program were re-edited, fortunately many
                                                      of the older, stored photos were retained in larger files in an
                                                      external device which allows for later editing, the two photos
                                                      below demonstrate that editing skills improve with practice, ("old
                                                      and new" from the same, small KB file), the regular "struggle"
                                                      with "Do I need higher quality lenses (more expensive) to obtain
                                                      better quality photos for this Website (or not) continues." 

(left click on thumbnail)
                                                               "before" - 2008
         "after" - 2014
                              Feb 24 - March 2 well, it "came in like a lion" and there has been no let up. more
                                          snow last night
(almost five inches) with bitter cold tonight.......March 2nd
                                          (tonight) the low will be -
14F with the extended forecast over the next 10
                                          days providing only 2 days with slightly above 32F
                                             note: all four dogs had their Heartgard Plus pill - March 2nd
    Mar 3-5 more snow (5") and forecast lows for the next ten days will be "ridiculous",
                                          8F, 21F, 27F, 8F, 26F, 27F, 20F, 15F, 13F and 16F. The expression
                                          "enough is enough" has taken on an entirely new message.
                              Mar 6 interesting how the weather forecast changes so much in one day, those
                                        "temp" forecasts on the 5th are now changed to
                                         ----,  20F, 25F, 10F, 33F, 31F, 26F, 16F, 21F and 20F = warmer!
                                             note: measured undisturbed snow fall area where no drifting has
                                                       occurred and the depth was 18 inches
                                                                                                           (left click on thumbnail)


                               Mar 7-12 thawing has been slow as the weather remains mostly cold with today's
                                         high of 27F and ten days show very little relief
                                             note: took cover off swimming pool temperature was 70F and it didn't
                                                      take too long to heat up, a little cloudy and need to take sample
                                                      of water in to be tested for "where it's at"...PH, bromine level, etc.
                                             note: income tax e-filed early this year (good to have out of the way)
                                             note: shoulder therapy is going very slowly......range of motion and
                                                      muscle strength is on target (according to the "Doc")
                              Mar 13-26 almost two weeks with nothing worth writing - cold, ice and snow have
                                         just begun to moderate.....still below freezing at night, the plan is to move
                                         the duck/fish camp trailer to the regular parking spot (last year moved it
                                         April 1st) forecasts do not look all that great for awhile
                                             note: tonight's forecast low is 13F
                                             note: finished screen saver project - selected favorite photos from the
                                                      last ten years & computer presents a slide show of all
                                                      Kwick's Screen Savers (link)
note: tomorrow is the last official shoulder therapy session which means
                                                      I'm on my own from now on, started daily "aqua" therapy in the
                                                      pool two weeks ago......working well (less pain and better results)
                              Mar 29 afternoon drove to Duck/Fish camp to move trailer out of storage into "camp"
                                             note: Grandson rode along to help (shoulder still not ready to lift)
                                             note: Kooly, Daisy and Gunny went for the ride & Taffey stayed at home
(left click on thumbnail)

                               Mar 30 - April 1 still a small patch of ice in the airing yard with 30F and a wind
                                          chill of 17F and night time "temps" for the next ten days in the low thirties
                                             note: shoulder therapy is now almost all done in the pool, there is huge
                                                      difference in effectiveness, the routines are daily with alternating
                                                      stretch vs. strength vs. endurance plus Jacuzzi for about an hour
                                                      in 6 out of 7 days a week - the best points of these routines are less
                                                      pain and more noticeable progress
                                             note: training will begin anew on the 15th of April
                                             note: recently three gates were made from PVC to help in making the
                                                      house safer for Lylah (our autistic Granddaughter), they have make
                                                      "traffic flow" with the dogs and Lylah much more "friendly" for all,
                                                      in addition to the gates all eighteen doors in the house now have
                                                      latches on them, the last two were the linen closets in the up stairs
                                                      area, one day Lylah had discovered a stored crutch in the last
                                                      "unprotected" bedding closet and was and was using it to reach
                                                      up and unlatch another door
all four dogs had their Heartgard Plus pill April 3
Taffey, Daisy & Gunny Frontline Plus with Preventic collar on Kooly
                                                                                 (left click on thumbnail)
                                April 8  snow  "gone", in the fifties this afternoon, finished placing Illinois boater
                                            registration numbers on Migrator
                                                note: needed to make a few decisions on what would be best, after
                                                         talking directly with the Illinois game warden that checks boats
                                                         at Big Slough launch, I went with a "normal" placement & will
                                                         use a clamp to hold up a "revealing flap" for full view when
                                                         underway (down while hunting)
                                                                                 (left click on thumbnail)     
                                 April 10 - trained Daisy, Kooly and Gunny at the Riverside Park DTA - short,
                                          stand alone singles (individually) Taffey could not see or hear me, so
                                          we did a fairly long "walk about" with her carrying a Dokken
                                April 11 decided to get some action photos - did several short "stand-alone"
                                         singles at Riverside Park with a jump in the middle of the retrieve,
                                         just looking for exercise fun and photos with Daisy, Kooly and Gunny,
                                         brought Taffey out to help pickup the equipment, gave her a chance to
                                         jump the log.......once up on top and then over and on the 2nd "go" she
                                         decided to take the easy way
(see photos in following link)    

                                                        Kwick "Obstacle" Exercise (link)  Website Page
Kwick Slide Show (YouTube link)

                                      note: YouTube has a free method of making a slide show (if you open an
                                               account). Since I already had one...clicking on the "upload & create"
                                               buttons started the process. Dragging a set of photos from a file on
                                               your computer is simple. High quality photos aid in making a HD
                                               presentation. The order of the photos can be edited. There are not
                                               many ways to "play around" with the photos, but with quality shots
                                               the "extras" are unnecessary....especially when the process is free.

                                April 14 snow/rain, cold and windy - this morning, we had a hand gun instructor
                                         work with us one-on-one in the "proper use", this was the first step in my
                                         Illinois CCW process and my wife's home protection situation - went well!
                                                 note: worked at a private. indoor gun range
                                                 note: we have FOID cards & my CCW class starts May 6th 
                                April 16 cold and windy morning...50's this afternoon 
                                April 18 did leaves in back yard, Kooly, Daisy and Gunny ran four easy "Ya-Ha"
                                         singles in tandem (alternating "send backs") at Riverside Park DTA, Taffey
                                         had to have her hind end lifting into the van longer strong
                                         enough to hop in
                                                 note: Vet appointment on Monday at 8:30 - shot updates for all
                                April 21 all for dogs at Vet shots updated, heart worm check for Kooly, Taffey did
                                         NOT get Parvo or Distemper (at her age advice - not necessary)
                                                note: Kooly dental work (June or July ?), Daisy & Gunny (no issues) 
                                                note: last time at Vet's Taffey's weight was up more than I expected, so
                                                         lost 7 pounds and looks about right now, "upping" the Carpovan
                                                         to twice a day, ramp into van is better, wouldn't go down the
                                                         five "easy" steps out the back of the house (first time for this)
                                                         and she had one open sore to keep a close eye on for the next
                                                         few days - mostly the changes are becoming more noticeable
                                                         every week  
                                                note: burned leaves from the airing yard
                               April 25 in the low 70's today, power washed garage and driveway, ran three 
                                            dogs at Riverside Park DTA - Kooly, Daisy & Gunny did four singles in
                                            tandem (remote line "send backs" with all three out in the fields taking
                                            turns, Taffey did five short marks afterwards near the line, she is taking
                                            her sweet time adjusting to walking up the ramp into the van, rain the
                                            forecast for the next five days
                                                mote: did more leaves in backyard - able to burn those
                               April 26 trained late in the afternoon - Kooly, Daisy & Gunny did four singles with
                                            each coming off the van to run alone, Taffey did three short marks and
                                            "told me" that was enough (better using the ramp today)
                               April 27 day off - cold & windy 
                                                 note: switching to "maintenance mode" has turned out to be the right
                                                          choice as Lylah is becoming more than a full time "adventure",
                                                          it is much simpler to keep the dogs in shape and plan for hunting
                                                          season without running any hunt tests, weekends would be much
                                                          more difficult without the two of us at home to watch over her,
                                                          progress has been a very slow, incremental process with no end
                                                          in sight....I will be in my "eighties" when she is nine 
                                                 note: on a more positive note my left shoulder is rapidly improving
                                                          thanks to regular therapy in the pool, still can't give a straight
                                                          left arm angle back....but it's getting closer
                               April 29 - Bulls out of the playoffs
  , BlackHawks - going strong, Cubs - wait
                                              until next year

                                                 note: today is the first time my left arm can reach back to the middle
                                                          back belt loop with no pain
  aqua therapy is way better at
                                                          this stage of the shoulder surgery recovery (Nov 19 - April 29
                                                          equals 23 weeks since surgery or slightly more than 5 months)
                                                          "Doc" said to expect 9-12 months for recovery....I think we are
                                                          ahead of schedule and wasn't too sure until this week
                                                 note: lousy weather for several days
                                                 note: it seems a bit strange not gearing up for any hunt tests, working
                                                          Madison Retriever Club's Derby stake Friday morning  
                                May 2 - up early, loaded gear to work the Derby, took Kooly, Daisy and Gunny,
                                            left Taffey at home, arrived 7:45 am assigned time at the W property and
                                            no one was there, sat until 8:10 am and then drove to club house on the
                                            other side of Stoughton, gate closed, drove to Gallagher property and
                                            that gate was closed, drove back east to the Stoughton property where
                                            they were setting up the Open. got out of the van and quickly found out
                                            the Derby had been cancelled - checked e-mails and phone records when
                                            I got back home and no one had bothered to notify me - over two hours
                                            of driving and $25 in gas plus not being able to go to court support my
                                                note: court date extension - next Friday
                               May 5 - cut first asparagus this morning, annual spring cold is getting better and
                                            not nearly as bad as last year
                                                 note: Mississippi River at Fulton is 14.3 this morning, with a projection
                                                          to crest at 16.3 this weekend (flood stage 16.0), probably will have
                                                          to move trailer to higher ground the 7or 8th
                                                 note: pick up boat trailer for Migrator from Phowlers on the trip and
                                                          fix the small hole in the camp trailer floor
                                                 note: Illinois CCW class instruction this week
                                                 note: fifty degree change in weather coming up
                                                 note: sure a lot easier to get things done around the house and yard
                                                          when dog training is low on the priorities list 

                                                 note: four months until hunting season
                                May 6  "rest in peace" Gunny
                                May 7  put CCW classes off until June, not an easy day
                                                 note: cleaned out van, removed one aluminum crate & rearranged setup
                                                 note: immediately noticed a much more relaxed atmosphere when feeding
                                                          and airing the dogs, didn't realize just how much tension there was,
                                                          carefully planned, 24/7 diligence in dealing with a dog's unpredictable,
                                                          rarely demonstrated and potentially dangerous behavior works, but
                                                          there is an emotional cost plus the continuing risk with our four year
                                                          old, autistic Granddaughter in the finally became necessary
                                                          to make a very painful choice - I decided to NOT wait until it was too
                                                          late and my Vet was very supportive....need to stop this entry....too
                                May 8  trained late morning, "temp" - 75F, hazy & no breeze....ran Kooly & Daisy
                                           in tandem with send backs in the grassy area of the Square Pond DTA - six
                                           exercise, alternating, short remote line singles (50-75 yards), went back to
                                           pick up "the line" (place board, white bucket and pole) after Taffey ran four
                                           20 yard fun bumpers from the line, put fan on them when back home
                                                 note: forecast crest of Mississippi R. at Fulton is 16.8 feet (Sunday) and it is
                                                          at 15.6 feet today (Thursday).....future flood reference data
will probably drive to Savanna and move trailer tomorrow
 note: lawn mower up from shed = fresh gas, change oil & bag mow the
                                                          front lawn
                                May 9 drove to Fulton, Iowa and picked up trailer for Migrator from Phowler's, went
                                          to Duck/Fish camp to survey the Mississippi flood threat - visual was about
                                         16.1 at 1 pm and cresting at 16.8 Sunday - close, but not a problem
                                                note: Taffey stayed home while Daisy & Kooly traveled
                                                note: brought a bunch of hunting gear home
                                                note: measured area near door where the floor has rotted through,
                                                         fix next trip
                                                note: cancelled next shipment of Eagle Pack Power - Amazon jumped
                                                         the price from $48 to $65 
                                                                              (left click on thumbnail)

                                May 10 mowed/bagged rest of lawn, shoulder beginning to express very little pain
                                            when working
                                               note: Amazon's Eagle Pack Power bags came up at $52 today....must have
                                                        been a large "response" to the price jump or someone "screwed up" 
                                May 13 "dang" didn't win the MEGA MILLION........again
                                May 14 trained at Riverside Park DTA - Daisy & Kooly ran four cold blinds ((blinds
                                            150-200 yards in easy cover with hardly any factors, still having some trouble
                                            with anything close to a straight up left back due the shoulder injury and
, both dogs were responsive to whistle sits and took their casts, Taffey
came out afterwards to run a few short, hand thrown Dokken marks as I went
                                            around picking up the four blind was in the fifties. cloudy with a
                                            stiff, northeast breeze from behind us
                                              note: dropped by the gun shop to schedule range practice 
                                May 15 started planning for the future pup's training and what came up was trying
                                            to optimize training alone, a first new idea was to design a training alone
                                            setup for teaching doubles, Daisy & Kooly will serve as perfect practice
                                            partners to look for finding ways to streamline and make the presentations
                                            as seamless as possible, then when the time comes with the pup, I will be
                                            more prepared to "modify in the moment"
                                                   note: the following diagrams show first using a simple "Mama-Papa"
                                                            presentation and searching for the best way to send the dog from
                                                            the line to retrieve the memory (verbal or hand motion)
                                                            the second diagram is a transition setup to two gunning stations
                                                            (with still one gunner) I will move from the "go bird" station to
                                                            throw the memory find the best way to move from station to
                                                            station as the dog is retrieving/moving with respect to the line
                                                            while retrieving and delivering (tentatively released on name for
                                                            the "memory") Daisy & Kooly should be able to provide plenty of
                                                            useful feedback, stand alones and send backs have been a way
                                                            of life for them
                                                   note: if a gunner moves during a marking setup it is called a "chaos"
                                                            drill (the motion becomes a distraction which the dog must learn
                                                            to deal with)

                                                   note: in retrospect my new pup may need a few "chaos" marking drills
                                                            to get use moving gunners
                                                   note: much of the early puppy work with Taffey, Kooly, Daisy & Gunny
                                                            was based on remote sit, training alone presentations, using that
                                                            experience along with modifications needed to fit seamlessly
                                                            into Hillman's "slant" on things should be very interesting
                                                   note: The key will be to achieve what Taffey taught me to enjoy which
                                                            was to work at having a pup say "That was fun! What's next?" all
                                                            day long
                   (left click on thumbnail)  
                                May 16 - cool in the fifties, trained at Riverside Park DTA, setup the 1st simple double
                                            with Kooly to run first, "memory" was thrown short with "go bird" long and he
                                            had no problem - did it perfectly......Daisy was next and was not nearly as sure
                                            of how to run it, decided to go after "memory" first, stopped her, sent back to
                                            the line and then she was given a hand signal to the long "go bird" then when
                                            sent back to the line she had forgotten the short "memory" = repeated the setup
                                            and she was OK the second time.......moved to a different area and switched it
                                            up to make the long mark the "memory" with the short as the "go bird"...Kooly
                                            again did it perfectly....Daisy was still confused, a repeat demonstrated some
                                            progress - analysis = given the past behaviors of each in new situations, the
                                            results were not at all surprising, Kooly has an exceptional memory and is an
                                            excellent marker, plus he has become much more focused the last few years,
                                            Daisy has always had trouble engaging/balancing her brain with excitement,
                                            new "stuff" is not an automatic "I get it" happening.....she'll be fine with time
                                                      note: Kooly has always been able to recognize the correct side of
                                                               a gunner....never quite sure about what is going through Daisy's
                                                               mind in "new" marking games...what she does is never a surprise
                                                               and there's a proactive expectation for being prepared to make
                                                               adjustments in the moment ("ditz mode" pops up occasionally) 
                                                      note: good session - went pretty much as expected and this will be
                                                               an excellent way to run doubles alone
                                                      note: once this becomes a smooth routine, running cold blinds past
                                                               or through old falls will be added
                                 May 17 early afternoon - trained Kooly & Daisy at Riverside Park DTA and worked
                                             setup #1 in a different area - changed up a few things.....moved slightly as
                                             the gunner to cue which mark was to be retrieved ("go bird" thrown second
                                             with "memory" thrown first). In addition, the commands "sit" and "watch"
                                             were used. When distance becomes a factor the "radio line" will be

Daisy's Double Routine (Setup #1) YouTube (link)

                                                                Kooly's Double Routine (Setup #1) YouTube (link)

                                             Daisy and Kooly started training this spring working in two areas. First was to
                                             begin anew conditioning for the start of duck hunting season in September.
                                             The other area was to study new ways of increasing the effectiveness of
                                             training alone. Both are experienced. However, a pup is "in the works" for
                                             next spring. This summer, they will help update my "training alone"
                                             techniques and strategies.
                                            This week's work was focused on developing a routine to present multiple
                                            marks using one gunner/handler in the field and the dog returning to the line.
                                            Memory and marking skills will be emphasized. To perform well the dog must
                                            be very focused, under control and especially responsive.

                                            In this drill the key cue is the motion of the gunner to the correct side of the
                                            next retrieve. Comparing Kooly to Daisy in the two videos, it easy to see that
                                            Kooly actually adjusts the position of his body at the line (on his own) while
                                            Daisy just changes the direction she looks.

                                                        note: The singles are fairly short in this drill. This is because when
                                                                 using a video camera with no zoom capabilities the dog and
                                                                 gunner quickly become specks on the horizon. The intention of
                                                                 theses videos is to be able to see how each responds to cues
                                                                 (physical and verbal)

                                                        Step #1 - one "station" (refer to previous photos posted May 15th)
                                                        Step #2 - two "stations" with a solo, walking gunner ("chaos" mode)
                                                        Step #3 - increase difficulty with factors (including distance)
                                                        Step #4 - run blinds from the stations to create diversion work         

                                                         note: A few weeks ago, the order for "Retrievers Online" arrived. It
                                                                  included all three issues from 2013 and the first of 2014.
                                 May 18 - day off....need to transplant many hostas......two huge, dead oak trees in
                                              the front yard need to be taken down and the plants are in harms way
                                                         note: need to register title & buy license plate for the Migrator
                                                                  boat trailer
                                                         note: work on Kooly's teeth - brush
                                 May 19 moved several hostas.....shoulder sore afterwards
                                 May 20 hot today, drove to Bullet Gun Shop for the second practice session with my
                                             Glock 40, noticeable improvement of over first time a few weeks ago, advice
                                             was excellent, knowing why makes a big difference, Illinois CCW class starts
                                             first week in June
                        updated 06/01/14