Sunday, July 29, 2007

Cathy Patrick Memorial Show - Part 2

Best Of Breed Thrianta - Cathy Patrick Memorial Show
July 28, 2007 Judge Howard Keller
Thrianta Senior Buck - Ear #MAN CCR's Mannetjevos
Bred and Owned by Elaine Harvey
This is probably my favorite show award to date. It's not the biggest, worth the most Sweepstakes points, the most famous or the most valuable...except to me. This second part of my show report is about why this award means so much to me.
Cathy Patrick was not a personal friend of mine. We didn't go to dinner after shows, we didn't sit and chat between classes, I never bought a rabbit from her nor did she specifically mentor me. I expect she would recognize my name because I'm active in the hobby, in shows and on public discussion groups, but I doubt she would come up and address me by name at a show. So why would Cathy's life and presence mean so much to me? Because I'm one of the many people she touched (as we all do) as she went about doing what she loved, judging and working at rabbit shows. Cathy was a tough as nails judge and an outstanding teacher to those with the fortitude to listen. For the breeders and rabbits deserving of her praise, she was equally generous of her support and admiration. Cathy taught me some very valuable lessons about raising and breeding rabbits. Some of those are:
-Never compromise. If the rabbit is not what it should be, go breed a better one.
-Don't accept mediocrity just because you can. Don't keep anything just because it is a rare color or you feel sorry for it. BREED BETTER.
-Listen to critique. Don't show your rabbit just to hear how 'pretty' it is. The judge has the opportunity to tell you what you NEED to hear, not just what you want to hear.
-Listen to EVERY judge. Even a judge who knows little about your breed can offer information that you can use to improve your breeding program.
-Listen to judging on any breed you can. Same concept. You WILL learn something that will help in your own program but only if you are LISTENING.
-Follow the rules. Cheating and cutting corners never bred a better rabbit. Ribbons and trophies and sweeps points are worth NOTHING if they are not earned honestly.
- WORK your program. Plan, Learn, Critique, Cull and keep working.

These are the reasons why this BOB award is so meaningful to me. I won this with a Thrianta of my own breeding in a program that I'm working hard on. The competition was worthy and challenging and the showmanship of all our breeders was excellent. I believe Cathy would have truly approved of the work and diligence I put into it. That work is my tribute to Cathy and that hat my reward.

Regarding Cathy Patrick herself. I really rale at the statement I hear so often "..she lost her battle with Cancer..." Cathy Patrick lost NOTHING. Cathy's life ended at the appointed time established by her creator and God. Only He knows the number of our days on this Earth. At the time of Cathy's death, she was valiantly fighting a disease that sought to destroy her body. The only way that Cancer would have been victorious is if Cathy had ever chosen to sacrifice the days given to her, curl up in a ball in the corner and stop living while her body still breathed. SHE NEVER DID THAT! Therefore it is Cathy Patrick who won and not Cancer! Cathy lived every single day of her life. She didn't allow Cancer to steal any of those days away.
Cathy Patrick fought valiantly and victoriously against Cancer and now rests free from pain and sorrow in the arms of her God.
Another lesson I'll accept from her gladly. That pink hat is not a memorial to Cathy's death, it's a testament to the life she lived and a hope that I could live as well. Thank You Cathy.

Cathy Patrick Memorial Show

You might want to go grab a snack for this one, it just might be lengthy. I will probably break this into 2 posts because I just can't quite find the right segque for my thoughts. First, the show.
This weekend was the Cathy Patrick Memorial Rabbit Show in Millersburg OH.
Many of you might ask "Who was Cathy Patrick?" Well, if you were a rabbit exhibitor, you might already know that she was a well respected Judge, District Director, friend and mentor. If you don't raise rabbits, you may not have heard of her, but you would have appreciated her...maybe or not liked her, but appreciated her. Let's suffice it to say that her life was such that a whole lot of people felt compelled to travel at no small expense to money, time or trouble to gather in her honor and do exactly what she liked most to do - Show RABBITS.

Total entries around 1600 for the show! In addition to the entry fees being donated to Cathy's family, the food was all donated, the raffle was all donated, the sanctions and even awards were donated! So much love and respect for such a great lady.

Bill Patrick (Cathy's husband) visiting with show friends outside.

Eric, smiling and ready for a day of judging.
Eric, later in the day after about 2 zillion Netherland Dorks (oops, Dwarfs. LOL)

WHAT a great raffle table!!! There were many special donations such as the customized nestbox (which Eric won) and the lovely stepstool. I won a beautiful fleece throw with an angel and bunnies on a pink background. The card with it said it that it was to represent Cathy's love of rabbits and the pink represented her valiant fight against breast cancer. I consider it a special treasure.

The Thrianta showing was FANTASTIC! There were 40 entries total with 17 (SEVENTEEN!) junior does!
The best part of the show of course - Look at all those smiles! T breeders really are just the BEST. The writters started off commenting that they'd never even heard of the breed. Half way into judging and just look at those faces. New interest maybe? ;)
Honorable Judge was Howard Keller who did a great job with this new breed.

Show results:
BOB - SrB (8 shown / 5 exhibitors)
Ear # MAN (CCR's Mannetjevos) Owned and bred by Elaine Harvey
BOS - SrD (4 shown / 4 exhibitors)
Ear # DG3 (CCR's Sunshine) Owned by Kim Kroak, Bred by Elaine Harvey
1st Place Jr B (11 shown / 7 exhibitors)
Ear #ORV Owned by Leanne Kelly
1st Place Jr D (17 shown! / 8 exhibitors)
Ear #THR (CCR's Thrintjes) Owned and Bred by Elaine Harvey

HUGE Thanks to the show committee for putting together this event where so many could gather and celebrate the life and work of our friend, mentor and favorite protagonist.
Cathy Patrick, ARBA Judge

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Pretty Sheep

Gratuitous Sheep photos today. I was telling a friend who breeds Icelandic sheep about photos I'd received from another Icelandic breeding friend. First friend asked to see the photos and wondered if she knew the other breeder. (confused yet?) Well, the names didn't ring a bell but first friend still wanted to see the photos and I love showing pics of pretty sheep, so here ya go. If the owner of the sheep wants to identify herself, I'll let her tell me so and then I'll edit to add her name. I don't like doing that until someone gives consent. Anyway, enjoy these beautiful sheep photos with me. Icelandic wool isn't one I've worked with extensively as it's usually a bit coarse for my liking, though I've handled some lamb fleeces that were yummy. My preference is for the Shetlands which are very similar but finer textured. Both are beautiful breeds of small sheep with fleeces that serve many different purposes. Both have fine undercoats (thell) useful for next to the skin garments. Both have strong outer coats (tog) useful for outerwear garments or even utility purpose. Both are small, independent and VERY thrifty breeds to raise. Both come in a huge variety of colors and patterns. Both come from similar environmental and geographic areas and obviously are related back somewhere.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Remember me?

I hinted about it before and now it's really coming together.
I've been absent from this blog so long because I was working on big stuff. Lots of big stuff! So where is the BIG stuff? Right here!!!

You can click on the Logo above or go directly to the URL at

I'm still learning my way around the fine tuning aspects of that site but it's working really well so far!
The official GRAND OPENING will be Saturday July 28 so for the next few days you can enjoy a sneak preview especially for my loyal customers who are checking this blog and my email lists.

There is also a YARN GIVE AWAY! Register your name in the entry by creating an account. Specific contest details to follow*. All information is used ONLY for site promotions and newsletters. Yup, newsletters. In the future there will be periodic newsletters with news of upcoming sales, articles, projects, patterns and photos from our customers!

Keep checking back to the store. I have tons more adding to do including yarn (if you have a specific color request, please let me know, I bet I have it.), spinning batts, angora fleeces, knitting needles and patterns.
*no purchase necessary but always appreciated. :)
This blog will remain my personal space for all sorts of stuff, bunnies, babies, bitchin'...all sorts of stuff. :) Can I start by saying that my behind was never meant to spend days on end sitting at a computer?! I really like the yarn photography stuff though. I've discovered all sorts of fun to be had there. The scary part? this is a dress rehearsal for even BIGGER things to come next year! yikes. :)

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Safe or boring?

Check that out.
Online Dating


I'm not sure if I should be pleased...or bored. Oh my...