As they say, all good things must come to an end. The car is long since unpacked, suitcases put away, laundry done. We brought back many memories from our first National Specialty, but of course we couldn't leave there without some other "souvenirs" to help keep commemorate our time in Oconomowoc. After all, there were fabulous shopping opportunities, and Frenchie stuff is hard to find! Plus we wanted to do our part to support the artists and vendors who had booths there. I'm great at justifying things, can you tell???
First, we had to get the obligatory win photos. I mean that poor photographer was just standing there, nice set all ready. He needed something to do, and we had all these ribbons....
I thought it would be nice to have Brutus & Carmen together in the same photo - not to mention that would have saved me $40 - but Brutus had other things in mind. He had the crazy idea that the camera needed attacking, so we had to go through all kinds of antics to get the picture above (they had to hide the camera until the very second the picture was taken). Carmen, on the other hand was perfectly happy to strike a pose!
Of course I did some shopping ringside too. So many fun things to buy, but I was trying (somewhat unsuccessfully) to stay on a budget. I'd always admired a friend's clay Frenchie sculpture, and couldn't pass up the chance to bring home one of my own:
I think he's kind of a fun interpretation of brindle (dotted instead of striped), but Brutus is still on the fence about whether or not he likes my choice.
|I don't know, mom. Kinda looks like he has the measles...|
|Well, as long as he doesn't try to eat my food, I guess he can stay.|
We got to meet Michele Copen, and Flat Brutus insisted we have her sign a copy of each of her Frenchie-photography collections for us to bring home. If you love Frenchies, you HAVE to get her two books, The Heart Thieves (just released) and A Frenchie For All Seasons.
Then this was my splurge - kind of a present to myself for us doing so well in the ring. I like it because it's kind of subtle, and is something I can wear anytime since you have to really look at it to tell it's a crazy dog person thing. In fact if you look really close, I'm wearing it in Brutus' win picture above.
Finally, we were at a silent auction one night and saw this framed Dottie Dracos print. It was a benefit for the French Bulldog Health Foundation, so everything that was bid went to help research that will help make Frenchies a healthier breed.
I loved the colors, but what sold me is that it looks SO much like Brutus!
|I don't have the slightest idea what you are talking about, mom. I'm much more handsome...|
Believe it or not, that's about it. I got a sweatshirt or two for myself, but really not much of anything for the dogs themselves. At least they got collar charms with their ribbons from obedience, so they have something of their own to show for all their hard work in the ring!
OK, so that's it. I'm sure you've all had your fill of my ramblings about our trip. It took us five - count 'em FIVE - posts to share it with you, so in the mean time I've gotten a chance to catch up on some of your blogs as well as capture nice mundane, normal moments from back at home. No more shows until late next month, so Carmen and Brutus have been happy to be "just dogs" again. That means lots of napping & snuggling on the couch, as well as a much-awaited return to daily walks now that our weather has finally cooled off. Thanks again for being here to share it all with us!