Knitting, Dogs and Life on the High Plains

Tuesday, August 02, 2005
Special Things

Recently I was reading on someone's blog about how we should not keep things that that are special to us hidden away only to be used, worn or enjoyed on special occasions. I came to that same conclusion earlier this year and so I use a crystal bowl that one of the dogs won as trophy to hold my knitting doodads on the table next to me. And I wear my lace shawls just because I want to. And I use the "good china" whenever I feel like it.

And then there is this:

Looks like a plain old dog bowl doesn't it? Well it is and it isn't.

We keep a bowl of dog biscuits on the counter at all times so we can grab some quickly when needed. The bowl that they are in used to sit on my trophy shelf, covered with dust. Now I see and use it every day. And I remember how it was won.

It wasn't one my dogs who won it or even me handling someone else's dog. It was won by a dog named Puckett and his handler Barbara. Barbara had Samoyeds for almost 30 years but had never had a champion until Puckett. Barbara was 73 when she got Puckett. She put every point on him and finished his championship all by herself.

When Puckett was three and had been doing a little bit of Group winning a big time judge told Barbara she needed to send Puckett out on the road with a professional handler because she was holding him back. With a really good handler he could be a top ten dog, maybe even a Best in Show winner.

Puckett is Barbara's best friend. The thought of sending him off with someone else was something she couldn't bear. She also knew he deserved to be seen at his best. So at the age of 76 Barbara decided to learn to be the best handler she could possibly be. And Puckett began to win. A lot. At the end of the year he was ranked number 3 in the country.

One year to the day after the judge had pulled her aside to give the well meant advice, when Pucket was 4 and Barbara was 77 she put two back to back Best In Show wins on him People used to laugh when they'd see the "little old lady" come in the ring with her beautiful white dog. And then'd she'd beat the pants off of them.

The weekend that Puckett and Barbara won the two Best in Shows, they won two of these bowls. It was actually a four day show and in addition to the two Best in Shows, Puckett won the Workign Group all four days. And I was there to see it all, to cheer them on and I even got to carry the 4 foot long ribbons back to Barbara's grooming set up for her.

About a month after those wins I was at another dog show, Barbara walked up to me and said she wanted to give something to me for having been such a big supporter of Puckett's over the past year. And she handed me one of Puckett's Best In Show trophies. I was speechless. It may just look like a dog bowl, but it represents an achievement that most of us in the dog show world will never attain. An All Breed Best In Show.

For 6 years that bowl sat gathering dust on a shelf. Then I finally pulled it down, dusted it off and filled it with dog cookies. I see it and use it every day. And EVERY time I reach my hand in to grab a biscuit, I think of Barbara and Puckett and their glorious weekend that I got to be a very small part of.

Puckett has long since retired and Barbara, now in her 80's has slowed down a bit, but she is still my hero.. I want to be just like her when I grow up.

Anne at 3:45 PM        

getting a dog?
Read this first!!

on the needles
30. Fletcher
Noro Transitions

29. Rosedale
Patons SWS

28. Forecast
Cascade Quatro

27. Lady Eleanor (again)
Patons SWS

26. Marble Shawl Collar Sweater
Karabella Marble

25. Serrano
Dale Baby Ull

24. Tamarah
Artyarns Regal Silk, Silk Mohair

23. Apricot(Plum) Jacket
DB Cashmerino Chunky

22. Rusted Root
BS Cotton Fleece

21. Not So Shrunken Cardigan
Lavold Sily Wool

20. Sizzle
Nashua Kim

19. Hanging Garden Stole
KP Alpaca Cloud

18. Log Cabin Blanket
Cascade Pima Tencel

17. Mystery Stole 2
Crazy Monkey Lace

16. Petticoat Sallops
Opal Petticoat

15. CeCe
Lambspun Silk

14. Hyrna Herborgar
Silk for Life

13. Sea Foam Shawl
LaLana Phat Silk

12. Diamond Fantasy Shawl
CTH Possum Lace

11. Evergreen Cardi

10. Mystery Shawl 3

9. Jaywalkers
LL Shepherd Sock

8. Pi @ Sunrise Shawl
Crazy Monkey Lace

7. Follow the Leader Aran
BS Naturespun Worsted

6. Peacock Feathers lace

5. Kiri Shawl
Rowan Kidsilk Haze

4. Sampler Shawl
Starmore Campion

3. Highland Triangle Shawl
America's Alpaca

2. Leaf Lace Shawl
Misti Alpaca Lace

1. Total Maze Cardigan
Araucania Nature Wool


finished in 2006
1/21 - Shadow of Love Socks
1/31 - Pineapple Jacket
2/5 - Smokin' Blueberry Socks
2/7 - Angora Fingerless Mitts
3/9 - Neopolitan Socks
3/18 - Summer Scallop Socks
3/30 - Spectrum: Red & Pink
4/2 - Felted Clogs
4/15 - Violets by the River
5/3 - Felted Hedgehog
5/6 - Felted B-4 Bag
6/15 - Pomatomus Socks
7/1 - Snapdragon Socks
9/11 - Simple Knitted Bodice
9/13 - White,Biscuit,Cream Shawl
9/14 - Something Lilac
10/4 - Cabbage Rose Socks
10/29 - Neck Warmer
11/15 - Lady Eleanor


finished in 2005
1/21 - Seascape Shawl
2/12 - Wool Peddler's Shawl
3/21 - Fir Cone Square Shawl
3/25 - Misty Garden Scarf
4/7 - Obi
4/30 - Truly Tasha's Shawl
5/19 - Ivy
6/19 - Tasha II Shawl
7/13 - Cherry Blossom Shawl
7/26 - Mom's Birthday Shawl
8/9 - Birch Shawl
8/28 - Mystery Shawl
10/4 - Herbal Remedy
10/5 - Rosy Fingered Dawn
11/18 - Mystery Shawl 2
12/6 - Ostrich Plumes Triangle
12/26 - In The Dark Socks
12/29 - Red, Red, RED! Scarf


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My Noro Philosophy:
ALWAYS have something Noro
on the needles!
  WIP: Twice as Nice

I live in Colorado.
I raise and show Samoyeds.
I knit.
I spin.
I do beadwork.
I have too many beads.
I have too much yarn.
I love to start new projects.

talk to me
whitestarsams (at) hpi (dot) net

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