Thursday, April 29, 2010

The 2010 Bike to Work Challenge...

It's not dog related, but this is 4 legs & 2 wheels afterall.

May is Bike month and many cities around the country are having some sort of cycling related festivities.  For the last couple of years, Columbus has had a Bike to Work Week (B2WW) which for 2010 has been re-badged as  the Bike to Work Challenge.  It's taking place from May 10-21.  Rides are tallied for the 10-20 with the last day being used as a tallying and award day.

2008 was the first year of B2WW and it was really what spurred me into starting to cycle.  That and my employer also offers an Eco-bucks program.  Here's a little blurb about it.  Basically, every time someone cycles/walks/runs/skips/skateboards/crabwalks to work they get $1, $0.50 if they carpool or take a bus.  It's not a lot of money by any means, but it's a great little incentive.  Now that I cycle full-time, it's a dinner out for me and The Teacher once a month.  Back to the 2008 B2WW...we won!  It was great!

The 2009 B2WW came along and we were obviously feeling pretty full of ourselves and excited to repeat our victory.  In 2009 they made the week actually 2 weeks worth of riding.  That was fine by me because I was sure it would give us the chance to stomp the competition even more...we lost.  We came in second place and it was actually a bit of a punch in the gut.  We had some pretty decent stats though.  We had 23 people that were registered, 21 of which were active, meaning they made at least one trip.

This year, we are at 19 registered riders right now with at least another 3-4 more (that I know of) to register.  I'm sure we'll have at least as many as we had last year.  We are even doing an holding a bike tune-up think in our parking lot on Wednesday, the week before it starts.  It will hopefully be just another way we can get more people participating.  We'll be doing basic stuff as well as answering any questions and maybe providing some free schwag (I've got to get around to finding some first though).

Each year the whole event gets bigger with more cycling related events to take part in.  There is a kick-off party that the Columbus Clydesdale and I will be going bright and early on the first day.  There is also another event on Monday the 17th with the CEO's of Central Ohio.  I think the first party is actually just more of a social gathering while the second event includes people talking about the future of Columbus cycling.  I think I will plan to go to both, but it'll depend on if I can come into work late both days.

One thing is for sure, we will bring victory back to it's rightful home!

Monday, April 12, 2010

3 months, 300 lives - ASPCA's $100k Challenge

The long and short is that the ASPCA is challenging shelters across the nation to not only come up with innovative and unique solutions to finding forever homes for more animals, but they are challenging them to find homes for at least 300 more dogs and cats from August 1st - October 31st.  This is 300 more as compared to the same time frame as 2009.  Basically, whatever shelter has the largest difference from last years adoption not only has the intrinsic benefit of saving hundreds more animals, but they also get a cool $100k to slip into their budget.

There is also a $25k prize for the shelter that "most inspires and engages its community to get involved in promoting pet adoptions and reuniting lost animals with their pet parents."  

Here's to hoping at least one shelter in Columbus will pick this up and run with it.  I've sent an email to both of the big places I know of and are familiar with (Franklin County and Capital Area).  Feel free to do the same or let me know of other places.  I'm more than willing to get the word out if it means a chance of blessing the lives of people like us, who without Gracie, Webster, and Cissy would be very very very different people.

For more info on this, go to the ASPCA's site for the challenge:

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

PetPromise RescueRun

4 legs and 2 wheels has a fundraising page for this years RescueRun!

We participated last year in the RescueRun and it was a lot of fun!  We had to coax Gracie for the last mile, but it was still a lot of fun.  It's organized by PetPromise  and raised $44,000 last year.  Please check out their site for more details about what they are all about, but this is their mission statement:

PetPromise is dedicated to helping to create a world where there are no more homeless pets through education, rescue, sterilization, and adoption.

The RescueRun is a day long festival that centers around the walk, but there is also vendors, food, contests, music, etc.  We only stayed long enough for the walk last year, but we look forward to spending some more time checking out what everything is about this year.

Please help us, help a great and growing organization like PetPromise.  Come on out and walk with us!

Here's a few pictures from the 2009 RescueRun

Getting ready to step off

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

A hello and introduction.

Hello to all you interneters!

We thought we would first take a moment to introduce ourselves.  We (the humans) are in the process of planning a wedding in August all while dealing with the everyday fun of having a mixed household...of pets.  I currently work at a law firm and my lovely fiancĂ©e is a special education teacher (known from here forward as "The Teacher").  Our pets are absolutely a huge joy in our life.  It would take way to long to tell you all about them, but if you keep following our blog, there is no doubt you'll learn more about them.  A brief introduction to the players should suffice, starting with:

I picked up Gracie at the estimated age of 5 weeks from a farm that had a sign that said free puppies.  I was in college and really didn't have a clue about raising a dog, but I had a lot of love to give to her.  I had a dog growing up, but that seemed so long ago, and I really had no responsibility when it came to her.  Gracie's a lab/border collie mix and 7.5 years later she's been an absolute joy in my life!  She's definitely more lab as she loves to lay around and she's not over energetic when she doesn't want to be.  She's very food motivated and eats just about anything, eatable or not.  She loves car rides, laying on pillows and in the recliner, and getting loved on...a lot!

"The Teacher" got Webster from the Franklin County Dog Shelter when he was 7 months old.  He was picked up as a stray and ended up with in a foster home because he was not a caged kinda guy.  It was love at first sight when she saw him although at the time his ears hadn't matured to their full glory.  They were flopped over after a few months, one stood up and then two.  Now, they are quite the defining feature.  He's now 3 years old.  He is most definitely a border collie mix, full of energy and intelligence.  We're not really sure what else he's got in him, but he's a very unique guy.  He may be slightly addicted to tennis balls, not a big fan of loud noises and is very protective of his momma.  When our families began to merge, he was the one that help Gracie learn to play and will thankfully keep her younger, longer.

Oh Cissy...where to start.  First I should mention that she's 13 years old and has never liked a man in her life.  She was found in a box with her brother outside of a school with a sign that said "momma died".  The Teacher was at that time only a student and in 7th grade.  When I first met her, I really did think she was the spawn of you-know-who, but she started to warm up.  She was still pretty particular as to when and how you could pet her, but when we moved into our new place she pretty much completely opened up.  Apparently she is now the way she was when I wasn't around, which is actually very entertaining.  At completely random times in the evening she starts meowing and begging for someone to come play...actually, she's doing it right now.  She's hilarious on catnip and is becoming quite social (she comes out when other people are around instead of hiding in a closet).  She's not the type of cat you can cuddle up with, but I wouldn't have her any other way!

So that's what the 4 legs part is all about.  The 2 wheels will be a "dusting" of cycling stuff mixed in with all the dog/cat information.  I'm a full-time commuting cyclist, but not overly hardcore as my roundtrip is only 2 miles, but it's still a bit of a commitment.  The Teacher commutes too far to ride, but hopefully someday that may change.

We all hope you enjoy the stories and information we share!