Yes, politics are important.  Better yet, who we vote for is MOST important.

Guns aren’t banned yet but if this administration had its way, they would be.  What this party can do it make it nearly impossible for us to own guns by making it a law to have outrageous insurance.  Another way to keep us from owning or using guns would be the outrageous price of ammo.

Peaceful decent human beings have the right to own guns.  We don’t use our guns as weapons.  We obtain them legally.  We use them legally whether it be when we are hunting, trap shooting, shooting at ranges and training/competing our hunting dogs.

Think of what we could lose if the wrong person were to be elected into office.  The responsible people who have purchased, trained, acquired titles and who love their Retrievers would be out of business.  That is just for starters.  If we are not allowed to use or are not able to afford to use our guns, we can’t hunt, train and compete our beloved Retrievers.  Some of us pay thousands of dollars for our healthy Retrievers.

There would no longer be hunting shows on television or the Internet.  That means that photographers, video masters, production companies and many more would be out of business.  Networks would lose hunting shows, which leads to subscribers dropping stations.  Training supply stores and firearm stores would be out of business.  No more hunting licenses.  The list truly goes on and on.

Crime and mortality statistics are often used in the gun control debate.  Controls often create burdens for law-abiding citizens and infringe upon constitutional rights provided by the Second Amendment.  Some would argue, including myself that nationwide gun ownership is one of the best preventatives to crime as well as to a potential dictatorship, whether it be by our government or gangs.

Please pay close attention to who you vote for.  The wrong party could and would try to strip away the rights of law-abiding citizens.  To take away our right to bare arms and defend ourselves against criminals.  They will not only take our right to defend ourselves away, but this action could strip us everything that we have worked hard for.  They could and would try to take away our American Dream, the TRUE American Dream.

Trump for President?  Ted Nugent for President?  It’s a thought!  A great ticket might be Trump and Nug for his running mate.  Crazy or not so crazy?


  1. Has nothing to hide.  We know it all about his professional and personal life.  He lost millions and billions.  However, he did work to get it all back and is now better off and has even moreso than before.  He knows how to run a business.
  2. He has enough money to run his own campaign without asking for millions and promising a bunch of pork.  No need for him to bribe anyone for votes.
  3. Trump has back bone.  He would say “NO” and he would mean it.
  4. He would bring jobs back to the States.
  5. He is very informed when it comes to the US Constitution and our rights.
  6. Illegals?  What illegals?  There would be no more.  Especially if Nug is his running mate!
  7. I could go on and on and on.

Me?  I’m in hopes that Trump decides to run.  I think he would be the best choice for the US.

Possible running mates for Trump?  Palin.  Bachmann.  Nugent.

Hunters, Retriever breeders and trainers, Target Shooters and more….please remember that politics are most important.  Please study everyone running and make your choice wisely.


November 19, 2010

Who out there has been hunting?  Any luck?  Not much flying in this area.

Johnny “D”  from Backwater Outdoors Radio drove to Central IL from Tampa, FL to go hunting this weekend.  I was pleased when I received his phone call Thursday to meet over a cup of coffee.

I was stuck in the office today so after Johnny was done shopping at Midland’s Farm & Home Supply Store, I asked if he could just stop by the office to visit.  He finally arrived at the office after taking the wrong turn out of Midland’s!!

Meet Johnny "D" Backwater Outdoors Radio

Meet Johnny "D" Backwater Outdoors Radio

It was great to meet someone and put a face to a name.  Johnny has a great outdoors radio program and if you like to listen to talk about hunting and fishing, please tune in.  Just click on the link above and it will direct you to the radio broadcast.  It will be well worth your while.  When you are listening, feel free to call into the show.

Backwater Outdoors Radio also has articles to read, blogs to read, you can read all about the cast on the website and much much more.  I highly suggest this site if you are a hunter, train dogs, handle dogs, fish, deer hunting, turkey  hunting….any kind of hunting you can think about!

I want to give a huge thank you to Johnny for stopping into my office today and brightening it up for me.  It was great to meet him and folks, what a down to earth gentleman he is.  Hats off to Johnny “D”

Happy Listening!

As always Southern IL HRC put on one heck of a hunt test.  All aspects of their hunt test weekend was very well-managed. Members and non-members all pitched in to help when needed.  Southern IL HRC members welcome everyone with open arms, they always have a smile on their faces, they are packed with loads of laughter and are just a darn good time!  I want to thank Southern IL HRC board, members and all of the wonderful judges, for doing an awesome job once again.  Southern IL is my favorite hunt test to attend.

Blu and Kimber both earned titles spring of 2010 at Southern IL’s hunt test and Kimber just earned her HR with Southern IL this past weekend!  Hopefully next year will be no different and Kimber and Blu can both earn their CH titles at Southern IL!

The location was absolutely beautiful.  Check in and hunt tests were held at Wayne Fitzgerrell State Park.  Rend lake is nearly 19,000 acres big and is known as one of the premier waterfowl hunting places in Illinois. Both ducks and geese make Rend Lake their home during migration so you be assured of a great waterfowl hunting season!  The trees were a mixture of red, yellow, green and orange leaves that were just beginning to change.  What a sight to see.

Once again, a big thank you to Southern IL HRC, the board, the members and all who attended for holding a premier hunt test at a premier location!  I look forward to attending spring and fall 2011.

Wendy Porch
Shadowhill Retrievers
Total Retriever Photography And Supply Store

The Next Generation

September 7, 2010

This is a photo of my 8-year-old granddaughter handling Blu on a single mark.  The minute she wakes up she says, “Grandma, can I retrieve Blu?”  All shes wants to do is handle dogs and go fishing!  She is actually very good with my Labradors.  She learns quickly and is getting the hang of it.

She watched me work with Blu on blinds Saturday.  After she saw that, running  him on single marks wasn’t enough.  She motioned her arms as I did when handling him on the blind and asked if she could do what I did.  So, I sat up a blind on land after explaining to her what I was doing, how to do it and why I was doing it.  I explained the difference between a mark and a blind.  She understood completely.  She handled him on a land and water blind.  It was funny because I had to throw a blind into the water.  After I did that, she wondered why she wasn’t sending him on his name instead of back.

Mickey handling Blu on a Single Mark

Mickey handling Blu "Shadowhill's The Hunter's Blu Shadow on a Single Mark

Mickey and Blu, Shadowhill's The Hunter's Blu Shadow

Mickey and Blu, Shadowhill's The Hunter's Blu Shadow

I will be running Kimber at Midway HRC Fall Hunt Test.  I’m going to take Mickey with me as well as Blu so she can handle him at either a started test or a Jr. Handler test.  If they will allow her to run him in a started test, I’ll sign her up for that.  She’s very excited.

Wendy Porch
Shadowhill Retrievers
Total Retriever Photography and Supply Store

Hunt Test Training

September 7, 2010

I was at Busch Wildlife in St. Louis, MO Sunday.  We practiced for HRC and AKC fall hunt test season.  Kimber, my chocolate Labrador Retriever and I worked on our seasoned test for HRC.  She did really well.  Below are some photos that Matt Settlemoir took of us.  Thanks Matt!!! 

Kimber Chocolate Labrador Retriever

Wendy and Kimber, Chocolate Labrador Retriever


Photo by Matt Settlemore

Wendy and Kimber, Shadowhill's The Hunter's Gunpowder & Lead at Busch Wildlife in St. Louis, MO


Kimber training for seasoned hunt test

Wendy and Kimber, Shadowhill's The Hunter's Gunpowder & Lead at Busch Wildlife in St. Louis, MO


Hunt Test Training

Kimber on her Walkup


Busch Wildlife, St. Louis, MO

Wendy and Kimber, Shadowhill's The Hunter's Gunpowder & Lead at Busch Wildlife in St. Louis, MO


Kimber’s sire is Cuda’s Blue Ryder. 

Shadowhill Retrievers
Total Retriever Photography and Supply Store

Tolerance For Pressure or Not

September 3, 2010

Some retrievers do not handle pressure well during training.  Some retrievers can handle a lot of pressure.

If a retriever can’t handle pressure, does this mean that the retriever can’t be trained to hunt or to compete at hunt tests?  Some say yes, some say no.

Mitch and Jake

Mitch Hainsfurther, Webfoot Kennel, training Jake - Yellow Labrador Retriever

My opinion?  I believe a retriever can be trained regardless of its tolerance to pressure.  It may take longer to train to hunt or to earn ribbons and titles.  More time means you may end up spending more  money for your retriever’s training.  Take it from me, if you can find a trainer who will work with and respect your retriever’s boundaries as well as get the job done, it will be well worth every dime you will spend on training.

On the other hand, your retriever may love to learn, train and work.  Maybe the retriever won’t need as much training as one that has a higher threshold for pressure.  What I believe is that there are a lot of variables to consider with each individual retriever.

I’ll see you at the line this fall!

Wendy Porch
Shadowhill Retrievers

Fall HRC Hunt Test

September 3, 2010


Terra, Owned and Trained by Mitch Hainsfurther Webfoot Kennel, Carlinville, IL

Once again it’s time for fall hunt tests!  I’m looking forward to seeing everyone and their retrievers.


Kaya, Trained by Mitch Hainsfurther Webfoot Kennel, Carlinville, Illinois

Total Retriever will be photographing at Midway, Southern IL Hunting Retriever Club in Marion, IL and Gateway in St. Louis, MO.  I’ll be posting more hunt tests soon.

Good luck to everyone who will be attending the hunt tests.

I’ll see you at the line this fall.

Wendy Porch
Total Retriever Photography and Supply Store


August 16, 2010

Her name is Maggie.  A beautiful, spirited black Labrador Retriever. Maggie, ABA Jake was Maggie’s registered name.  Owned by Lowell and Marilyn Summers, Southern Illinois.

Maggie, RU Spring Hunt Test 2010

Maggie, RU Spring Hunt Test 2010

I first met Maggie this past spring in Southern Illinois at Gun Creek’s HRC Hunt Test. I saw her again at RU and at SIHRC Hunt Test, fully expecting to watch this little gal run this fall for her HR Title.   Maggie is such a dream to watch.  She was fun, spunky and a darn good retriever.  I always looked forward to watching Maggie at the line the next time.  This past spring when I knew Maggie would be at a hunt test that I was attending, I would look for her and Lowell.

We see people and retrievers at hunt tests each spring and fall.  Before we leave, we say our goodbye’s until the next hunt test.  We take for granted that we will see our friends and their retrievers at the line the next time around.

I sent Lowell an email a few weeks ago telling him about a litter that a friend knew about, asking him to pass it on to anyone who was interested in a well-bred puppy this fall.  I was not expecting the reply that I received.

Maggie, Gun Creek Spring Hunt Test 2010

Maggie, Gun Creek Spring Hunt Test 2010

Lowell wrote back to me.  Maggie was 13.5 months old when she was struck by a vehicle last month and killed.  When the door was open, she got out of the house and ran towards the road.  Lowell (Buzz) and Marilyn brought Maggie home when she was 7 weeks old.

Maggie had just finished her SHR in April. This past year she had retrieved 107 ducks and 47 geese. Four times she traveled with a group of hunters and Buzz in a 500 horse power 24 foot air boat across the frozen reaches of Rend Lake to hunt geese.  Buzz wrote to me that Maggie was something to see retrieving geese over ice.  I believe it!

Buzz took her everywhere he went each day. She loved to ride in a golf cart that Buzz used each day to take her to the water.

Buzz had a dog blind set up in the house and each night he would tell her to go to  her blind and she would enter it and lay down.  When Buzz told her to come out, he would give her a treat. After a while she would sit down in front of him and if he said nothing she would go to her blind and lay in it.  Maggie’s favorite toy?  The three rubber rings you see in every pet store was her favorite.

Buzz never had children and his wife Marilyn has one grown daughter from a previous marriage.  I am sure each of you reading this can see how important Maggie became to Buzz and Marilyn.

Maggie and Buzz SIHRC Spring Hunt Test 2010

Maggie and Buzz SIHRC Spring Hunt Test 2010

Buzz has now placed a deposit on a pup from David James, a well-known trainer in Central Illinois.  He is going to name her Casey Fork’s Junkin.  I asked Buzz why that name.  As we all know, almost all dog’s names come with a story or some sort of meaning.

Buzz and Marilyn reside near the  North end of Rend Lake.  Actually a thousand feet from a boat ramp that gains access to the Casey Fork Sub-impoundment area that becomes 2000 acres of flooded crop fields in the fall. Nearly 5000 ducks are killed there each year.

Buzz retired as a Park Ranger at Rend Lake after 30 years and now hunts 60 or so days each year.  Hence the Name Casey Fork.  Junkin is a combination of the pup’s Dam (Jump) and Sire (Duncan).

I wish the best for Buzz and Marilyn and their new Labrador Retriever, Casey.  I am looking forward to watching little Casey at upcoming hunt tests.

Maggie RU Spring Hunt Test 2010

Maggie RU Spring Hunt Test 2010

Any of us who knew Maggie and had the pleasure of watching her work will miss her very much.

Buzz, Casey & myself will see you at the line,

Wendy Porch
Shadowhill Retrievers
Total Retriever Photography And Supply Store

All of us look for the best laundry soap for our camo that doesn’t smell like flowers and that won’t ruin our expensive camo.  I have a solution.  I have made this and love it.  You don’t smell it, it’s very inexpensive and it works well!

The cost of this laundry soap is approximately 11.00 per 576 loads of laundry.  I use it at home and with my camo.  You can purchase the ingredients at most grocery stores.  They can be found at Rural King stores and most farm and home stores as well as Schnucks in the laundry isle.

You need the following:

  • 1 box of 20 Mule Team Borax
  • 1 box of Arm and Hammer Washing Soda
  • 3 bars of Fels-Naptha
  • 1-5 gallon bucket with a lid (I purchased mine at Home Depot)

The three bars of Fels-Naptha with the two other boxes will make enough laundry soap for approximately 576 loads of laundry.

Note:  I also put a half of a cup of Oxy-Clean in my mixture for a little extra boost.

Many people say that they have made and used this laundry soap and are very pleased and impressed with the recipe.  Mostly, they like the cost because it is inexpensive and works as well as Tide, if not better.

Step 1:  Finely grate approximately 1/3 bar of Fels-Naptha bar soap and put it into a sauce pan with 6 cups of hot water. Do not boil the water.  Keep it hot though and stir it until the soap melts.

Step 2:  Once the soap is dissolved, Add 1/2 cup of Borax Laundry Booster and  1/2 cup of Arm and Hammer Washing Soda to the sauce pan.  Stir until all powder is dissolved.  This is where I also add 1/2 cup of Oxy Clean.  You do not have to but I do.

Step 3:  Add 4 cups of hot water into your bucket.  Once you have added the 4 cups of water to your bucket, add your soap mixture from your sauce pan and stir briefly to mix.

Step 4:  Add 22 cups of water to the bucket.  Make sure the water is room temperature.  Stir to mix and let stand COVERED for 24 hours.  Contents in bucket should gel.


Note:  If it doesn’t gel, it will still work fine.  if it doesn’t gel, I would stir it before using it.  Store product in your closed bucket.  If you don’t, the water will evaporate out of the mixture.

For home use, once the mixture is cool, I add 15 drops of Geranium Essential Oil and 10 drops of Lavender Essential Oil.  I then stir it up and let it sit with lid shut tight for 24 hours.