Category Archives: dog friendly

The Promised Land on a Horse with No Name

500 women over the age of 50 on the monterey bay peninsula are experiencing what I have as well as people across the country have been writing to me telling me their stories. Cici and I are overwhelmed with gratitude for the people who have sent me kind words, donations and offers to help us.  A special thank you to Melody and Diane, two inspiring women who gave us hope and friendship on the road.

http://www.vox.com/first-person/2016/9/29/12941348/homeless-over-50-statistic

 

Thank you to Eleanor at Vox and Karen Turner for their kindness and assistance with this article.

 

We have been featured on some pretty high profile pages, see below.

 

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We also love what our friend Wanda Sue wrote about us in this week’s Cedar Street Times:

 

Monterey Workshop addresses Affordable Housing Solutions

Ask yourself: Now what was that all about?

Reducing a speech, lecture, or event into a one-line summary isn’t easy, but you’ll be surprised what you discover by condensing a major phenomenon into ten words or less.

If interested, try this: Focus on one specific event, such as the first Presidential Debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump last Monday. Then ask: What was that all about?

When I did the exercise, fifteen hours of contemplation resulted in extracting a comment Hillary made at the opening of the debate. Paraphrased, the most-important message I culled from event was:

One out of two Americans lives paycheck to paycheck

Never mind the fact neither candidate mentioned the H word. Hillary’s statement implied poverty is already a national epidemic. Mass homelessness proportional to disenfranchised Americans of the  Great Depression years seems imminent, even in a paradise like Monterey..

That not-too-distant future is now for CeliaSue Hecht, about whom you’ve read in this newspaper.

The former journalist who’s now homeless lives a nomadic life which is currently reminiscent of Biblical times.

Monterey’s rider on a horse with no name

CeliaSue is a stalwart symbol of bright, sober and mature homeless women with both courage and talent. She is a well-bred middle-class, college-educated former New Yorker, age 66, whom homelessness turned into a living example of the legendary person crossing the desert on a horse with no name. The steed in her case is a dusty white van shared with her dog Cici. It serves as the office from which she freelances as a writer and blogger.

During the six-months in which the City of Monterey was researching the feasibility of adopting five amendments to its Housing Element, each of which might hopefully ameliorate the affordable housing crisis in the city, CeliaSue Hecht went south to avoid becoming a starfish on another cold winter beach in Monterey.

Hoping to find a cozy room at an inn, she found instead, what I would succinctly define as a temporary oasis in The Promised Land for the Homeless, otherwise known as the desert near Giant Rock Airport.

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The Promised Land for the Homeless?

CeliaSue has been sleeping in a trailer on a campsite where she helps tend a herd of thirty-plus goats. There is no running water or electricity, but a perk in this region noted for flying saucer sightings is an occasional anomaly above the yucca trees that could be a fortuitous sign or even revelation of future things to come.

Look at the photo and ask yourself: What is this streak all about?  Then try to define it in ten words or less.

As a  help, you might remember the most-beloved Bible story of them all, in which a bright star appears over the manger in which an infant sleeps while shepherds tend their flocks by night.

When I asked myself what this is all about, the answer was: History repeats itself.

If this goat could talk, it might reveal where the homeless go from here by baa-baa-baa-ing, “There’s lots of  land in the Great American Southwest!

 

 

SAVING LIVES

if you live on the Central Coast of California or know someone who does and have an RV, camper, mobile home or trailer that is gently used and would like to provide a home for a senior or veteran, please call CeliaSue at 702-225-8206…have a list of those in need of housing. You can also contribute here:

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Filed under Adventure, affordable housing, all you need is a dog, California, Dalmatian, dog friendly, dog travel, dogs, Don't worry be happy, donations, farm animals, goat, Monterey, Pacific Grove, Palm Springs, travel with dog, women with dogs

Advocates for Women

I have been back in the hospital now for two weeks. Three blood clots on my lungs, breast cancer was ruled out and ovarian cyst to be determined. Without housing, how can I get better?  Sleeping upright in my car night after night, my legs swell and blood clots develop in my legs and travel to other parts of my body and basically could kill me.

 

I want to create a nonprofit called ADVOCATES FOR WOMEN, the mission is to create, build or find housing for women 50+ who are displaced and have dogs since no one else is doing this and too many tell the women to give up their dogs.

What would happen TO HUNDREDS OF DOGS IF EACH OF THE WOMEN GAVE AWAY THEIR BEST FRIENDS, COMPANIONS, and FAMILY MEMBERS???? (Not to mention what would happen to the women sleeping on the streets or in their cars without the protection of their dogs) ?

HOW WOULD GIVING THEIR DOGS AWAY SOLVE THEIR HOUSING CRISIS EXACTLY SINCE GIVING UP THEIR DOGS WILL NOT SOLVE THEIR ECONOMIC WOES.

As the Big Sur Sobranes fire burns hundreds of acres nearby, there are all kinds of fundraisers going on to help the people who have lost their homes due to the blaze. These people deserve the resources that they require. Yet this highlights and proves what i have been saying all along that where there is a WILL THERE IS A WAY. When people actually WANT TO DO SOMETHING,THEY DO IT.

For the past two years since I have been without a home, except for when I had a camper to live in and roommates, I have met numerous women of the hundreds of women also without homes and been displaced due to ECONOMICS. I have NOT seen the community come together in the same way, doing fundraisers to build, create or find HOMES FOR single women without children, women who are not mentally ill, not drug addicts, not alcoholics, with low income, not working or cannot find work, with dogs, many over 50 years of age, some illl and who’s health has deteriorated without having shelter.

We want to create CARETAKERS VILLAGE,  Land or a lot can be utilized to place SHIFTPODS, yurts, RV’s, campers, trailers, tiny mobile homes, etc. to CREATE a village for women over 50 with dogs who need HOMES ASAP.

WILL YOU HELP US ????  it takes a village…to get this DONE.

thanks.

https://www.youcaring.com/celiasue-hecht-594952

 

Cici has been with Mark Anderson again at the Monterey County Weekly, now for two weeks.

 

This week, she turned 10 years old and Mark gave her a big bone to celebrate.

 

cicibug

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Filed under affordable housing, California, California fires, Carmel, dog friendly, dogs, economy, Monterey, non-profits, pet friendly lodging, Uncategorized, women with dogs

Take your dog to work day

well, we are a little behind and upside down.

 

Spent five days/nights in the hospital again, this time at CHOMP in Monterey. The good news is the blood clots are gone. Not so good news is that the breast cancer may be back plus there is a mass on my ovary. Diagnosis soon.

 

These awesome nurses Suzette and Lou and others brought Cici into the hospital room to visit and stay with me over the weekend. And on Monday, the admin police came and said she had to go asap and sit in a cage.

 

I called out to Peace of Mind Dog Rescue and others. No boarding facility had room due to the upcoming holiday weekend.

 

I then sent out an email asking others and rock star Mark Anderson, Managing Editor, of the Monterey County Weekly said he could take her for a few days.

 

The weekly team loves her.

She seems really happy.

Sleeping on a blanket now.

These pics are from her big day with deadlines.

 

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She’s charmed here at MCW while i’m in the field.

She really pals up with reporters/editors Sara Rubin and Ana and Nick Rahaim.

Cici seems to be a real news hound.
In addition, she has been paling up with a big bone that Rubin bought her.

 

 

 

 

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Cici supervising the newspaper staff

 

 

 

Cici got to be at work at a busy newspaper office and a hospital and she was AWESOME. Everyone said how well-behaved, sweet and happy she is.

 

The nurses and other staff spoiled her and went gaga over her. Everyone loves Cici.

 

I miss her and will get her back tomorrow.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Adventure, dog friendly, dogs, Monterey, spoiled brat dog, Uncategorized

Top 3 Dog daddies

This Sunday is Father’s Day. A good dad is one who truly loves his kids, furry ones, too. And he spends time with them, taking care of them, training and having fun. We are inspired by these three dog dads.

 

Here are our top 3 picks for awesome dog daddies.

 

  1. Roo Yori

Running to the rescue, Andrew Yori made man’s best friend proud! ‪#‎K9Ninja‬ ‪#‎AmericanNinjaWarrior‬  Cici and I were very excited to see Roo on the show. Dog dad to Wallace, world champion frisbee dog and Hector, former Vick dog (both dogs are now over the Rainbow Bridge), Angus, Mindy and founder of a pit bull rescue foundation named after Wallace, Roo just appeared on the TV show American Ninja Warrior and qualified for the next round. He encourages people to adopt dogs from shelters. Wallace was an unwanted shelter dog once upon a time and Roo and Clara took a chance on him and it worked out great.

 

https://www.facebook.com/NBCNinjaWarrior/?fref=nf

 

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2.  Paul: Cherry Garcia’s dog dad

Cherry, another former Vick dog, was quite traumatized when he was adopted by his parents. And he has absolutely blossomed in their loving care.

 

What has surprised you most about him?

One of the most surprising things to us is we really thought Cherry would get to a certain point in his rehabilitation and settle in and not change much after that. What we have found is Cherry continuously grows and overcomes the next obstacle in his way. It will be a lifelong journey for him, and he has days where he regresses, but eventually he moves forward. It has been an incredible journey watching him go from a dog who slept with his eyes open to a dog that we can call “normal.” We know that isn’t the most exciting term, but that’s all he wants to be, a normal dog.

The other thing we have found really surprising about Cherry is that stress helps him learn and move forward. We all saw Cherry on “DogTown” and how shutdown he was. We didn’t have a plan of how to handle his fame, but we weren’t going to put him through public events if they didn’t help him. The first event we took him to was a small, kids-only event. He was stressed to the max, and we stayed a couple of hours b

When we got home that night, Cherry took to his normal routine with much more confidence than we had ever seen. He was so full of himself. We thought, “Hmm … maybe this is a tool we can use to help him progress.” We were right!”

 

HECherrySnuggling

 

http://bestfriends.org/stories-blog-videos/latest-news/cherry-vicktory-dog

 

3. Jon Stewart

Long time pit bull advocate, he even adopted a three-legged dog named Champ. When he did The Daily Show, the office was dog friendly. When he retired from the show, he and his wife Tracey bought a 13 acre farm in New Jersey. They provide homes for formally abused farm animals.

 

http://moomah.com/themagazine/virtual-adoption

 

Happy Father’s Day !!!!

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Filed under adoption, Adventure, Best Friends, best friends animal sanctuary, big dogs welcome, dog friendly, dog movies/TV, dogs, farm animals, pit bull, Uncategorized

Love of the Paws

You love dogs and maybe cats and horses, too. And perhaps you love reading about them and the people who rescue, adopt and foster them as well as love romantic tales with a furry side. I just discovered an incredible book series by an amazing author, Susan Daffron is her name and our interview is below. I am starting the 8th book in her Alpine Grove series and apparently there is a 9th book and a 10th one on its way.

 

What I LOVE LOVE LOVE about these books, unlike other books that have pets in them, romantic comedies, is that Susan’s pets are major characters and play a BIG role in each of the stories. They are integral and integrated into the story. She writes firsthand from her knowledge about animals and it is hilarious at times, heartwarming and each of the books in the series gets better and better. What I also found wonderful is that she continues the characters stories, a little bit, in each of the books, so you feel as though you are getting to know everyone in the town of Alpine Grove. There is no such real town, but there is an Alpine, CA and much of the descriptions relate to where Susan lives in idaho.

 

This book is for dog lovers, cat lovers, even horse lovers. And the romance is very family friendly. In other words, the couple may kiss a little or end up in the sack but there is not a whole lot of spicy sexy details. I found some of the other books where the happy couple jump in the sack one two three, quite unrealistic and disarming. Who does that? no kinky stuff, either, just plain old normal living day to day with dogs and cats kind of thing. Very inspiring for animal lovers.

 

Each book can be read by itself, stands alone, but i think you will miss out if you do not read ALL of them.  Now how can you not love books with names like Chez Stinky, Bark to the Future, the Art of Wag, Luck of the Paw, not to mention a book with pugilies !!!

Here’s the complete list:

Four paws up !!!! Cici agrees, Woof Woof Woof !!!!

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How did you get started writing romantic comedy books ?

I’d written a lot of nonfiction books and my husband started writing fiction. After we published his first book, he encouraged me to give fiction writing a shot. By then, he had acquired many books about story structure and writing, so I read through a few and decided to attempt a novel of my own.

Who is your favorite romantic comedy book author ???

Janet Evanovitch (although technically she’d say her books are mysteries).

Did you plan to have a whole series ahead of time – Alpine Grove ?

I wrote the first book with the possibility of turning it into a series. If the first book hadn’t done well, I’m not sure I would have written the second. But I got enough good feedback from people that I decided to continue.

Did you write about dogs and / or romantic comedy before this series?

I wrote nonfiction books on pet care and rescue, but no fiction whatsoever.

Are the people and pets based upon pets you’ve had, people you know ?

The human characters tend to incorporate aspects of people I’ve met or know, but aren’t really based on anyone in particular. This explains how I develop my characters:

http://www.susandaffron.com/creating-characters-people-love/

The dogs in the first book (Chez Stinky) are very loosely based on the dogs I had from 1996 – 2012. For those who are curious, this post explains which one of my dogs they are based on:

http://www.susandaffron.com/write-what-you-know-applies-to-pets-too/

 

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How do you begin each book?  do you have the names of the characters and plot all worked out ahead of time ?

Most of my books start with an idea. Sometimes it’s something that strikes me as funny or a theme I ran across in a movie, article, or a book that I want to explore. Then I figure out the characters, flesh out the story and put a basic outline into Scrivener. After that I start writing. At about 30K words, I tend to get incredibly stuck and have to print out the outline and figure out where I’m going in more detail. Then I go back to writing.

How do you decide which dogs or cats to feature in each book? 

I think about the type of dog the character might have, since certain types of people are attracted to certain types of dogs. For example, the character Sara Winston in The Treasure of the Hairy Cadre is an athlete. Before the story begins she wants a jogging buddy, so she goes to a shelter and adopts a high-energy Australian Shepherd that she names Holly. This post goes into more detail about how I create animal characters:

http://www.susandaffron.com/creating-animal-characters/

Do you have experience with walking dogs at a shelter or starting a nonprofit animal rescue ?

Yes. I volunteered at an animal shelter for many years and worked part time as a vet tech at a spay/neuter clinic. I didn’t start a rescue myself, but I founded an organization called the National Association of Pet Rescue Professionals that provided educational resources to rescues.

Tell us about your pets

I have three dogs, who are all alumnae of rescue groups. Fiona and Tasha are Samoyeds from Samoyed rescues and Kaylee is a mix of maybe Samoyed and collie that I got from a chow rescue. (The group rescued more than chows; basically, they took anything that was extra furry.)

Do you have a favorite breed of dog or cat that you like?

I’m a fan of Samoyeds (big surprise) but I also love Golden retrievers and retriever mixes. I have a soft spot for long-haired breeds.

What is your favorite book / pet / character ?

Of my books, my favorite character is Kat, since her story carries through the entire series. So I know the most about her life and background. Of the dogs, I love Linus because he’s so sweet and Swoosie amuses me because I incorporated aspects of my dog Fiona into her character.

We talked a little bit about your geek side, how did that influence your writing these books? a few of your characters are kinda geeky… and you said you work for IBM. 

I’ve been married to a programmer for a long time and worked in technology for years, starting as a technical writer. It was inevitable that I would include a few geeky people in my books. This post goes into it a bit more:

http://www.susandaffron.com/geeks-and-nerds-in-romance/

Do you have an agent, publisher or did you self-publish the books? in either case, why?

My books are published by my publishing company Logical Expressions, Inc. which has published more than just my books, so technically the corporation is a micropublisher. I was traditionally published (nonfiction) years ago and had an agent. It would take a LOT of money and unusually good contract terms to tempt me to accept a traditional publishing deal at this point. Although self-publishing is a lot of work, I have the flexibility and freedom to write the books I want to write.

Have you traveled a lot ? travel with your pets?

We’ve traveled with our pets a lot in the last few years because the current crew of dogs are great on road trips. (The prior pack was NOT.)

Any particular dog friendly places that you enjoy taking the dogs?

We live in Idaho and there are thousands upon thousands of acres of trails and forested areas to explore. The dogs love going hiking with us.

Are you an equestrian?  met any real life cowboys like Clay?

I’m a pathetic horseback rider, but I do enjoy it. I don’t own horses, but I have met quite a few people involved in the equestrian world. I did some research on horse trainers and Clay is compilation of a bunch of stories I read about their lives.

Are you a dog trainer?

I only train my own dogs, which is plenty. Almost all of my dogs have been to obedience classes with varying degrees of success. Fiona got her AKC Canine Good Citizen certification, which means mostly that she likes treats a LOT so she’s easy to train. I plan to take Tasha to classes later this summer.

What inspires you about writing about dogs and cats and romance?

I like writing about the relationships people have with each other and their pets. For most people I know, pets are part of their family and often play a big role in the decisions people make. So quite a few of my books explore those ideas.

Are you working on any new books, series related to pets?

I’m about halfway through the first draft of  the as-yet-untitled tenth novel in the Alpine Grove series. The dog in this one is a yellow Labrador retriever named Harley that the main character, Lisa Lowell, is fostering for the local rescue group.

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Filed under adoption, belly rubs, breeds, canine cuteness, cats, dog friendly, dog hair, Uncategorized

Doggies gone wild

these dogs at the weddings sure were in the way at the wrong times, funny though.

would you like to raise money for senior dogs and their people?  Doggies deserve new Homes and so do their people !!!!

Some cities are starting to fine owners of dogs for leaving their pets outside during the cold / heat. This is good. Pets can die outside in the cold / heat and they should also not be chained up and left outside 24/7.

And what I would like to know is:  who is going to be held accountable for leaving people (some who also have pets) outside in the cold / heat without shelter????

Hypothermia can set in even in weather as warm as 50 degrees, but many cities don’t declare hypothermia alerts or winter emergencies,…

As the size of the average American family home has ballooned over the last half century—homes are now two-and-half times larger than they were in 1950—so too has the homeless population.

…More than 3.5 million people, including 1.35 million children, experience homelessness in the United States each year, according to the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty.

400+ women over the age of 50 are without homes in the Monterey Bay.

who is going to be held accountable for leaving elderly women out in the cold ????

 

Cici and I would love to start a non-profit, with your assistance, that would actually provide housing, tiny mobile homes, RV’s, campers, etc. for these women to have SHELTER, privacy and dignity. Don’t you think that elderly women, many with dogs, deserve homes to live out their life with grace?

 

Like Christine who has been sleeping outside in the cold and heat for two years now. And others sleeping in tents. One lady 75 years old while getting chemo and radiation treatments. Or an 82 year old woman who slept in her van for three years.

 

Won’t you help us Get Elderly Women OUT of the Cold ??? Thanks.

Please donate to Paypal via prmatchmaker at yahoo.com.  Every share and/or donation will make a difference.

Thanks !

 

who let the dogs out?

 

check it out:

 

https://aspecialeventconcierge.wordpress.com/2016/01/16/photography-gone-wild/

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Filed under animal rescue, dog friendly, dog weddings, dogs, fundraising, funny, Uncategorized, women with dogs

A romantic dog away

Finnegan and Blue, the 7 and 15 year old Golden Retriever and Aussie Shepherd mix greeted us at the door. They let themselves in and out of the house numerous times during our stay. And Finn opens guest room doors and lets dogs outside of their rooms upon occasion.

There is also an elusive cat. If your doggie has cat issues, like Cici, you might want to let them know in advance.

We enjoyed the lovely wine and cheese afternoon refreshment as well as the delicious breakfast of eggs benedict with country fried potatoes and fruit parfait, orange juice and our choice of hot beverage (tea or coffee).

Our room was cozy with a gas fireplace for heat as well as individually controlled heat and air conditioning unit on the wall. We had our own patio although it was too chilly to sit outside. The bed was nice and big and Cici of course joined me on it.

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Michael and Finn

 

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From the beginning, in 1996, the McCaffrey House B&B in Twain Hart (about 10 miles north of Sonora) was pet friendly. Husband and wife Michael and Stephanie moved to Twain Harte from San Jose. He was a graphic designer seeking to retire and paint watercolors and Stephanie was an event planner. They often spent time in Twain Harte during the summers at Stephanie’s family cabin. When they moved onto the property, they tore the cabin down and designed the house that “we’d love to be a guest in.” There are eight guest rooms, three downstairs are pet friendly.

Some secrets to their success as innkeepers are to always take time off, make your home a sanctuary for your family and hire a housekeeper and innsitter. The best part of having an inn, Michael explained, is that they get to meet a lot of interesting people from all over the world and it’s a great place to live. Living in a tourist area is fun. There are no traffic jams. It is stress free, A slow leisurely pace of life.

People from all over the world have stayed at this B&B (countries: England, Germany, Asian countries, people who want to visit Yosemite, go hiking, biking, camping, horseback riding, wilderness adventures, repel down the rocks, go fishing and enjoy the outdoors at nearby Pinecrest Lake). Yosemite is about an hour away.

According to Michael, every season is different in this rural community and there are many pet friendly hiking trails, lakes and dining options including the Ephernson House, The Rock (a tavern) and Cafe Blossom that allow dogs on their patios.

The Sugar Shack is a yummy bakery about three miles up the road. In Pinecrest, Cold Spa Village and Mia’s restaurant are pet friendly. About 45 miles away, Kennedy Meadows (5,000 feet elevation) provides cabins, camping and a restaurant, (known for its Sunday night prime rib dinner), all are pet friendly.

The sugar Pine Trail is a good flat trail walk on with dogs.

McCaffrey House: 23251 Highway 108 – Twain Harte, CA 95383
The Inn is located 11 miles east of Sonora and one-half mile above the East Twain Harte exit on Highway 108. Do not turn into the town of Twain Harte) Turn right off of Highway 108 just beyond the 4,000 elevation marker sign. The McCaffrey House is approximately three hours from the Bay Area, four hours from the Monterey Peninsula, and one hour from the Central Valley

TUESDAYS ARE FREEStay any three nights that include a Tuesday and pay 1/2 price for Tuesday. Stay any four nights that include a Tuesday and it is FREE.Must call to book. Request at time of reservation. Holiday periods excluded. Subject to availability.

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Filed under All you need is love, B&B's, big dogs welcome, California, camping, dog friendly, dogs, Gold country, K9 travel, keep pets safe, pet friendly dining, pet friendly lodging, pet travel, travel with dog, travelwriting, Uncategorized, Valentine's Day