Monthly Archives: April 2009

napa dog friendly…

Both of these Napa inns have real dogitude … the Napa Inn has its own yard and the Beazley House has live-in dogs… the wineries we visited were ok but not as friendly as Navarro’s in Anderson Valley…but there are others that we did not visit…

napa inn

nice weather, sunny, warm, birds singing, a block or so from a safeway and also went to the napa visitor center and got info, they were very nice there

we stayed in Angelina’s Garden Room, a luxury suite, with a king bed, tv, fireplace (gas), jacuzzi tub and shower plus very brightly decorated, with its own little courtyard for cici to play in, two chocolates for me, no pet amenities … wireless internet, very nice…

gr_angel_five

The afternoon snacks included three kinds of cheeses, goat, champagne cheddar and brie, plus cookies, crackers, port and sherry and breakfast was amazing, fruit and yogurt, cereals, plus a french toast dish with blueberries and a cheesy hash brown egg dish, both delish, and coffee, tea and juices (orange and grapefruit) and muffins.

To reserve a room with a pet, you must call and let them know ahead of time that you are bringing a pet since there are only two pet rooms/cottages…

Beazley House

We stayed in the Blossom View, this is the nicest inn, very friendly people and a wonderful suite… There are two on site dogs, tummy and sissy. The gorgeous room looks like a log cabin very comfy and cozy, in room jacuzzi, tv, fireplace, coffeemaker, large king bed, looks out into grassy courtyard to the main house, one of the first b and b’s in the area, Jim and Carol Beazley, are the owners. The pet amenities were traveling dog and a dog bowl.

http://www.beazleyhouse.com/rooms/blossom_view

my nosy news hound investigative reporter ran up the back stairs and checked out the tid bits left on the floor of the kitchen, she would have gone upstairs to the guest rooms except colin the innkeeper caught her and stopped her. what are they hiding up there? only the nose knows…

breakfast was a very yummy muffin, fruits with yogurt, a hot egg quiche, sausages, and there was also cereal-granolas and juices, hot tea, coffee, and cheeses

Best of all, there are chocolate chip cookies available 24/7 as is sherry in the lobby/living room…

Napa pet friendly wineries

cici was allowed in all of the wine tasting rooms in napa, dogs are not allowed on tours

Darioush, a persian owned winery, gave us complimentary wine and bottled water

Clos duVal, The original owner was french, the only winery people that gave cici a cookie

Pine ridge winery, corporate, kind of stuffy, but the people were friendly…

Other wineries in the Napa area are:

Hess Collection Winery

Cuvaison winery

Signorello Vineyards

William Hill Estate

St. Helena:

Beringer Vineyards

Casa Nuestra Winery

Catacula Lake Winery

Rustridge

V. Sattui Winery

Hall WInes

Merryvale Vineyards

St. Clement Vineyards and Winery

Sullivan Vineyards

Rutherford:

Mumm Napa Winery

Rubicon Estate

St. Supery Winery

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puppy scams…

of course, you know those scam emails from Africa, Nigeria or other foreign countries? Now, I suppose it was only a matter of time for them to realize how dog crazy we Americans are, so they have new scams, at least, new to me… I just received an email from someone who said that they have a puppy that they cannot take care of… would I please contact them if I can take care of the puppy… of course, this will come with a cost, a big one, no doubt… and of course, there is NO puppy…

if you want a puppy, run, do not walk, to your nearest animal shelter, animal rescue organization or Humane Society and get a dog that is on death row.. thanks !

here’s more about puppy scams… and don’t support puppy mills, either…

http://www.scambusters.org/puppyscams.html

Taking the Bite Out of Puppy Scams

Puppy scammers hustle money from their victims by promising to send them a dog that oftentimes doesn’t exist.

Two Variants of the Puppy Scam

In one version of the scheme, the scam artist posts an ad in a newspaper or news website for a puppy he will give away free to a loving home. All you have to do to help the poor little pooch is pay the $400 shipping cost. Victims send the money — but their puppy never arrives.

One such scammer even claimed he and his wife were traveling missionaries who could not keep their new litter of English bulldog puppies! He conversed with one victim for a week and sent pictures of the healthy pups.

In a second version of the ruse, the scam artist poses as a breeder who promises a purebred puppy for a deeply discounted price. The unsuspecting dog lover can’t believe her good fortune. A purebred Yorkie — which goes for $3000 at the local pet store — can be hers for just $400.

The payment is sent, but once again the puppy that so tugged at the hopeful owner’s heartstrings never arrives.

Scam artists copy puppy photos from the websites of legitimate breeders to use in their ads. Some even set up an entire phony website, often using a stolen credit card, to make themselves appear to be successful business owners.

In an alarming trend, a large number of puppy scam artists have emerged from “breeders” in overseas locations like Nigeria, making prosecution more difficult.

Victims usually receive contact only through email and are asked to send payment via a Western Union wire transfer or money order. This is a favorite payment method for scam artists because the money can’t be recovered.

Be suspicious of any deal that sounds too good to be true — it probably is.

Puppy Scams: What to Do

If you have your heart set on ordering a puppy advertised over the Internet, here are four tips that will help you stay safe:

1. Beware of anyone offering ridiculously discounted prices, especially if they won’t speak with you on the phone. Confirm a breeder’s name, phone number and address. Legitimate breeders may be traced in directories such as Whitepages.com. (However, scammers often give pre-paid cell phone numbers, so getting a phone number is no guarantee that a breeder is legitimate.)

2. Look out for someone who promises to deliver a puppy within 24 hours. Most breeds need to be eight weeks old before they can travel, making it unlikely a buyer could get a purebred with such a quick turnaround time.

3. Ask for — and carefully check — references. Talk to the dog’s vet and to other people who have bought puppies from the breeder.

4. Be suspicious of a seller who only accepts wire payments or money orders. Use a payment method that offers fraud protection, such as a credit card.

Finally, if you think you’ve been the victim of a puppy scam, contact your state attorney general or the U.S. Secret Service Office for Internet fraud.

here’s a cute puppy… awwwww…

images

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sonora dog friendly…

union hill inn, sonora, ca

big huge house, we stayed in the topaz room, my birthstone, lots of gold and brown, one couch and a loveseat, an elevated bed, several chairs, a bathroom with shower, the home is quiet, peaceful, there is a pool, a chapel where they hold weddings, and 4 rooms, and several other rooms including a tree house like room (the road house), all are dog friendly… cici was in dog heaven with steak, ground beef, beef and treats as dog amenities, plus lots of squirrels to chase.

lots of chocolates and amazing cookies in dishes and tea and coffee available 24/7…

supersized gourmet breakfasts,,, some of the best food I’ve ever eaten, REAL orange juice, yogurt with pears and walnuts, and yogurt with blueberries and bananas, an egg, feta cheese and chard dish, canadian bacon and scrambled eggs with pineapple salsa and a pepper and mashed potatoes dish plus toast and beef, and several types of breads (banana), apple fritters and brownies to go… extremely hearty… like being on a cruise !

the innkeepers barbara and her husband have two basset hounds, the older one has a hurt paw, the younger one did not meet cici

cici enjoyed exploring the property, chasing cats, deer and other wild critters…

we visited the visitor’s center, the historic town of columbia, a candle shop with kitties, thankfully cici did not see them, she met a couple of dogs in shops and it was hot hot hot temperature wise, it cooled down at night, but was 89 during the day, we visited a lake boat launch area, and there is a lake and cooler area at pine crest about half an hour away that we did not visit, dogs are welcome there… a dog park is being discussed by the town folk and they are hoping it will be open in a few months.

there are several dog hospitals and a pet shop that has treats, food, beds, toys, leashes and collars.

topaz350

Lodging: A few really pet-friendly include The Groveland Hotel, Gold Lodge, Best Western Sonora Oaks, Hotel Charlotte, Columbia Gem Motel, Long Barn Lodge, Sonora Days Inn, Pesce’s Gardens, McCaffrey House B&B, Aladdin Motor Inn and most vacation cabin rentals, RV Parks and cabin resorts.

Hiking Areas: Pinecrest Lake, Dragoon Gulch Trail, Lyons Reservoir, Kennedy Meadows Resort (Trailhead to the Emigrant Wilderness and Pacific Crest Trail)

Wineries: (all outside picnic areas): Chatom Vineyards, Mt. Brow Winery, La Bella Rosa and Twisted Oak Winery (and in tasting room if well-behaved)

Restaurants with outdoor dining that allow pets: Most will allow dogs on leash in outside dining area if well-behaved dog. Jamestown: Locals Make Good, 1859 Historic National Hotel Groveland: The Groveland Hotel Sonora: El Jardin Twain Harte: The Rock, Cover’s Apple Ranch Columbia: The Frosty

Any other dog-friendly visitor areas such as dog parks: Stanislaus National Forest and Yosemite National Park (must be on leash in campgrounds and developed public areas) A dog park is in the development stage at Mary Leveroni Park on Hwy 120 in Groveland (route into Yosemite) which should be completed in Fall 2009.

Columbia State Historic Park allows pets on leash and even lets them ride in the stage coach… photo and info courtesy of Sandy Gordon
Tuolumne County Visitors Bureau… The child’s name is Joy Hughes from Chowchilla, California.

stage-coach-dogsm1

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$4 million dollar doggie tiara…

a Thai designer has create a diamond and emerald tiara for his dog that cost $4.2 million and is creating a doggie hair clip next… doggie fashion shows are popular in Thailand… imagine how many puppies $4.2 million would feed and take care of…

http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=13143227&ch=4226714&src=news

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camping out under the stars… nevada city

harmony ridge lodge

this property is like camping out under the stars but you’re in a nice lodge…has real dogitude … with all of the amenities… the room we stayed in #5, was kind of rustic, with a front and back door, opening into the forest, 4 acres for cici to roam, all fenced, and she had her friend ben, a golden retriever, 10 years old to lick and play with, there was a group of ladies attending a painting workshop, and cici decided to go say hello, walked into our next door neighbor’s room and jumped onto the bed, thankfully the ladies love dogs and thought she was funny… she zoomed around and around the property and explored the place, a very happy dog…

here is a photo of ben:

photo-469

there are 9 rooms, 3 are pet friendly, ours was quite spacious, had two beds, stone floors, sorta zenlike, a table, fridge, no tv, no phone, and a jacuzzi tub in the bathroom. very quiet and peaceful…

highway 20 which is where the property is located is lovely, I used to take the 20 into truckee to go to carson city, nevada… the weather thankfully is cooler than down south where we were…

bill and deanna are the caretakers, deanna is from carson city/reno and bill makes the best cookies, snickerdoodles. He has handed out 75,000 cookies and counting and his breakfast was divine… ham and asparagus strata, like a quiche, plus fresh fruits, pineapple, strawberries, blueberries, grapes plus yogurt, cereals, hot tea, coffee, juice, and quite filling…

deanna also makes dog cookies which cici indulged in quite readily, ate a bunch and wanted more… the recipe is below… cici is kinda picky about her dog cookies… so if she likes these, most dogs will probably like them, too…

the innkeepers do weddings and classes/workshops, retreats, the whole property can be rented for a day or weekend…

pet fee depends upon the size of the dog, but usually $25 per night for a 40 pound or under dog, amenities include treats, bowls and blankets…

pet rules are that the dogs can roam the fenced four acres but are now allowed in the main house and must be on leash and not left alone in the guest room…

from the book The Ultimate Dog Treat Cookbook by Liz Palika

Crispy Cheese Circles (makes 15-20 2-1/2 inch circles)

2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 tbs beef bouillion powder
1 large egg
1/4 cup to 1 cup warm water
1 cup cornmeal for rolling out the treats

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Mix the first four ingredients together, add the egg, and 1/4 cup warm water, mix to form a dough. if the mixture is too dry, add the remaining water.

Spread the cornmeal on a breadboard. Form half the dough into a ball. drop it on the cornmeal, flatten slightly and turn it over to get cornmeal on both sides. Roll the dough out to 1/2 inch thick.

Use a circular cookie cutter 2-1/2 inches in diameter to cut the dough in circles

place on greased cookie sheets.

bake 15-20 minutes or until the bottoms are golden brown

repeat steps 3-6 with the other half of the dough…

there is a dog beach and campground about 10 minutes from Nevada City..

http://www.dogfriendly.com/server/travel/uscities/guides/w/FOLDERca/wonlineca9854474so146.shtml

South Yuba Campground

South Yuba Campground
North Bloomfield Road
Nevada City,
California 95959
919-985-4474

This campground has 16 sites for tents or RVs. Camp amenities include picnic tables, fire grills, piped water, pit toilets and garbage collection. The cost per site is $5 per night with a 14 day maximum stay, and are on a first-come, first-served basis. The South Yuba River Recreation Area is located about 10 miles northeast of Nevada City. Once turned on North Bloomfield Road, drive 10 miles to the South Yuba Recreation Area. From the one lane bridge at Edwards Crossing, go about 1.5 miles on a dirt/gravel road to the campground and trailhead. Trailers and motorhomes should take Highway 49 and then turn right at the junction of Tyler Foote Road. At the intersection of Grizzly Hill Road turn right and proceed to North Bloomfield Road. Dogs of all sizes are allowed at no additional fee. Dogs may not be left unattended outside, and they must be leashed and cleaned up after. Dogs are allowed on the trails. This campground is closed during the off-season. The camping and tent areas also allow dogs. There is a dog walk area at the campground. There are no electric or water hookups at the campgrounds.

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yosemite dog friendly…

ahwanee, apple blossom inn

the trip from sonora south on the 49 was supposed to be very twisty and windy and take two or more hours, we did it in an hour and a half, and it wasn’t too bad, we passed some nice scenery and lakes.

When we got to the inn, most impressive was this dog named Ruby greeted us and showed me to the door where I was supposed to go, to the office/kitchen to call the innkeeper Candy, wow! apparently the dog is determined for Candy to adopt her…

We stayed in the Red Delicious room and it was modern, furnished with an overhead fan, fireplace, pink roses on the pillows and curtains, bright, quiet, peaceful, no cable tv, but there are a bunch of movies/videos to watch and wireless internet, lots of fruit and chocolate in dishes, and lovely grounds. The inn is about 18 miles from Mariposa which is about an hour from Yosemite, 45 minutes to Merced.

Mariposa does not have a lot of pet friendly shops, but cici was allowed in the visitor center. There are a few parks and campgrounds that are dog friendly.

The inn is situated on 5.5 acres in the midst of an organic apple orchard, spa and gardens. Innkeeper, Candy ‘Apple’ Arthur, has her own home on the property. Winner of Arrington’s Bed and Breakfast Journal’s Book of Lists Awards – Best for Rest and Relaxation.

The Apple Blossom Inn has four rooms and two are dog friendly…

Candice Anne Arthur aka Candy Apple bought the inn five years ago. She grew up on a campground resort, in Garberville… She worked for an Internet company in SF bay area, as a network engineer for years.

On the property is a genuine apple orchard, 1/2 acre, organic apples, five different varieties, and she has also planted cherries, peaches, pears, apricots and bees who make apple blossom honey… when the apples are ripe, guests help themselves to apples…

There are deer on the property in the summer…. and two cats, apple jack (black), plus ruby the dog… and a fox…

The apple blossom pancakes with apple cider sausage for breakfast were delicious. Also had yogurt with fresh fruit and hot tea and juice, yum…

photo-466

There is a $15 pet fee per night; and she offers a special, yosemite picnic package, $28 a person, which is a filled backpack, with a bottle of sparkling apple cider, meats and cheeses of choice, sandwich rolls, potato salad, green salad, trail mix and two bottles of ice water, insulated… dishes and utensils…

1012bed

 

 

The Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine Railroad, for example, which runs historic steam engines on a 4 mile journey through the Sierra National Forest just outside Yosemite, welcomes all friendly dogs on the trip.

Cru, Fasi Estate and Ficklin Vineyards wineries all welcome animals to their tasting rooms. Music lovers wanting to take in one of the free concerts each Friday, both Appellation California and Yosemite Lakes Park welcome dogs at their free music events.

Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/823367#ixzz22nMF2nLj

Yosemite Sierra Visitors Bureau’s website highlightsall the pet friendly lodging and activities in the area. Everything from campgrounds to resorts…

http://www.YosemiteThisYear.com

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dream the dream for Earth day…

people thought that she was just a funky OLD mangy dog… just by looking at her until she opened up her mouth and surprised everyone… just goes to show you not to judge a book by its cover, literally…

that is what we’ve got to say for this Earth day, Cici and I…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RxPZh4AnWyk

Earth day is about US people and the planet we live on… be kind, love a dog, have compassion, give generously and SING !

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Calistoga wine country…

At Brannan’s Cottages in Calistoga, ca…

cici got yummy treats from Traveling Dog, a pet amenity company in Santa Rosa, She had a sausage like one, a cookie like one and some other smaller treats and there was a cute 4 year old jack russell on site dog named Pinotfor her to play with and compete over bones with (he buries a lot of bones on property and Cici kept finding them, diggin them up and eating them) … there was lots of grassy area for dogs to play in a white gated area around the property… dog joy!

we stayed in a cute suite, upstairs, #5, purple, lace and wicker, gas fireplace in living room and bedroom and bathroom… only thing was the beds were a little wobbly…

we had a delicious breakfast pizza (hot entree) and a bouquet of berries, strawberries, blueberries and other berries plus melons and other fruits, yogurt, banana bread, plus cereals granola and coffee, tea, juices… quite lovely plus I love chocolates on tap…

There are six rooms, two are pet friendly plus another for small dogs

lavender1

The town of Calistoga is quite dog friendly, there is a book store where dogs are welcome and in nearby Yountville, the Yountville Chamber of Commerce is also very dog friendly and quite helpful…

Calistoga has places where you can go for mud baths, Cici would have loved that but she did not get one…

Pet friendly wineries in Calistoga include:

Cuvaison Estate Wines
4550 Silverado Trail

Dutch Henry Winery
4310 Silverado Trail

Chateau Montelena
1429 Tubbs Lane

Graeser Winery
255 Petrified Forest Road

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bo, the new obama dog…

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090413/ap_on_go_pr_wh/obama_dog\

by now you have probably heard about Bo, the Obama’s cute new dog… i

it turns out that the Obama girls just received their new pet dog from Ted Kennedy, a dog named Bo… Bo is not from a shelter… but he is second chance dog… this is his 4th or 5th home… not sure why… he is cute as a bug …

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Interview with Don Martine…

Interview with Don Martine, owner and Innkeeper of the elegant Martine Inn in Pacific Grove, California http://www.martineinn.com

1) tell me a little about when, why and how you started your business…

I started my business in In 1984. In 1972 my parents, Norah and Homer Martine and I purchased the Parke home which was built in 1899. In 1901, Laura and James Parke, of Parke Davis Pharmaceuticals, purchased the home. We bought the home for an investment and as a family home. I lived in the home for the first few years, it was both a valuable property and a money pit. I decided that the best use of the home was to operate a B&B. It took several years to get all of the approvals. I fully renovated the grand mansion and replaced the worn out plumbing, installed a new heating system with individual room controls and replaced the old knob and tube wiring. All of the fixtures are authentic, turn of the century antiques, including push button light switches, claw foot tubs, brass fixtures, marble sinks, etc.

The entire process of the design, furnishing, decorating and services for guests is to recreate the experience one would have had if they had been the individual guests of the Parkes at the turn of the century. If I’m going to do something, I am going to do it as well as it can be done.

2) What inspired you to open a B&B?

I wanted a good return on my investment and this seemed to be the best way, to operate a B&B.

3) What’s your favorite thing about operating a B&B?

Constant challenges. Everything that happens in the world, the wars in Iraq, the dot com collapse, earthquakes in San Francisco, everything has changed the dynamics of how to run this business. Nine months ago, it could be called a luxury resort but not now because of the AIG effect.

5) What makes your B&B different from others?

Proximity to the ocean, Cannery Row and Monterey Bay Aquarium. Plus, museum quality antiques, personal attention to detail, MG auto collection, special services such as Victorian silver service, staff selection, training and attitude.

Over the past 20 years, the Martine Inn has staged hundreds of weddings – from two person elopements to groups of 120 guests. Bride and grooms have come from as near as Monterey to as far away as Germany, Japan, Hong Kong, and the European continent.

MG auto collection: I have been interested in cars since the age of three. I am a sports car restorer and race engine rebuilder and have won in vintage and historic car races around the United States.

http://www.martineinn.com/1mg.html

My interest in MGs began in 1950 when my father, Homer Martine, purchased a 1949 MGTC. This interest was furthered when I watched Johnny Von Neumann drive his 1950 MGTD Special to victory at the inaugural Pebble Beach Road Races … a car that I now own and have on display.

Victorian Silver service: a very significant collection of both flatware and hollow-ware from the 1700s, 1800s and early 1900s. You can see spoon warmers, asparagus trays and tongs, merry-go-round cruet sets and flatware silver set Lancaster Rose made by Gorham and introduced in 1896 that has 40 pieces to each placesetting and 86 serving pieces. The breakfast table is set each morning with some of these silver pieces.

6) If there was one tip that you would recommend that business owners follow, what would it be and why?

Don’t cheap it out. Buy good products that will last and you will save a lot of money. Every guest is valuable and deserve the best service. What is your time worth? Know the quality of the suppliers and vendors that you deal with.

7) How do you cope with juggling all of the various balls you’ve got going in the air?

Have to set priorities. A lot of it has to do with attitude. There are always things to improve. Be careful what you choose to give attention to. You are not going to do everything you want to do.

don

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