Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter Shenanigans

Happy Monday Everyone!!

Well, I hope that the Easter Bunny happily visited each of your homes yesterday and left good surprises!! :-D

Cousin Pippi and family came over, so we pretty much hung out all afternoon in the backyard!!

Freckles the Dog

I've never had another puppy friend over at my house, so I was super excited to hear Pippi come through the gate!

Freckles the Dog

We had lots of sniffs...

Freckles the Dog

Lots of chews...

Freckles the Dog

Me on a stick and Pippi on the grass!

Freckles the Dog

Don't forget about lots of play time!

Freckles the Dog

Freckles the Dog

Freckles the Dog

And, finally, a little R&R!

Freckles the Dog

Freckles the Dog

All in all...a wonderful Holiday with Family!! :-D

Hope that yours' were just as pawesome!

PeeS: Domeek is laughing a little too hard about this one. I'm sure most have you seen this little girl in yellow Meme...





Saturday, March 30, 2013

Hoppy Easter

Hoppy Hoppy Easter Everyone!!! :-D

Freckles the Dog

Here Comes Peter Cottontail
Hoppin Down the Bunny Trail
Hippity Hoppity
Happy Easter Day

Cousin Pippi is coming over this afternoon (the first time at my house) so we can play, eat lots of yummies, and hang out!! I'm soooooo excited!!! :-D

Since I haven't taken any Easter photos yet, I'll leave you with a couple of shots from yesterday at Holbrook Palmer Park! 

Freckles the Dog

Freckles the Dog

Freckles the Dog

Freckles the Dog

Freckles the Dog

Enjoy all the eggs, hunts, bunnies, services, and other fun things associated with Easter everyone!!! 


Thursday, March 28, 2013

Tour De Napa

Because of all this Napa stuff, I completely forgot to mention that my Grandma is finally out of the hospital after 3 and a half months!! Due to her medical condition, she's now living with Domeek and me, so it's a bit of a learning curve and adjustment period right now (especially with all these new medical machines and schedules)...but I'm glad to have her back! 

Happy Friday Everyone...woohoo, TGIF!! :-D

Welcome to part two of my Napa excursion...

Luckily there are quite a few hotels and Bed & Breakfasts in the Napa Valley that cater to humans traveling with their canine pals, but after much debate, we decided to stay at the Napa River Inn!

Freckles the Dog
Care of Napa River Inn

The Napa River Inn is located right on the waterfront in the historic Napa Mill and is an absolutely gorgeous, boutique hotel! It is within walking distance (aka, a few hundred steps) to tons of restaurants, cafes, and bars and just a couple of blocks away from the shopping district. :-D

Freckles the Dog

It only cost $25 for me to stay the night and join their VIP Program (Very Important Pet Program), which included a bag full of delicious heart shaped cookies, a doggie blanket, bowls, and a placemat!

Freckles the Dog

Our hotel room was quite spacious and had a seriously, comfortable bed!! ;-) As breakfast was included with the hotel room, we had it delivered to the room, and then took it out to the patio area to watch the waterfront and trains go by! :-D

Freckles the Dog

Everyone that worked at the hotel was incredibly nice and very happy to meet me (they even took my photo to put on the website!)...the only problem we encountered was that our room was at the far back and so had a lot of noise from trucks and people! :-/ But, besides that...we thoroughly enjoyed our time there!

Freckles the Dog

For dinner we went to The Pear, who serve absolutely delicious Southern Fair, because it was only a short walk from our room and they happily accept pups on their lovely outdoor patio!

Freckles the Dog

Just check out the fondu appetizer that we ordered...um, yeah, I know you are totally drooling right now! And "yes" it was as delicious as it looks! ;-) Gouda and french bread...yes please! 

Freckles the Dog

The waiter not only delivered water to Domeek...he also gave me a tickle and dropped off a bowl of still water for me too! :-D

Freckles the Dog

We highly recommend them and will definitely be going back next time we're in town! 

After breakfast and before we hit even more wineries, we took a little tour of Napa...this little park was just up the road from the hotel.

Freckles the Dog

It was a great place to have a tinkle and a sniff! ;-)

Freckles the Dog

Then it was off to Napa's only dog park, but have no fear, they might only have one park...but boy-oh-boy is it awesome!!! :-D The fenced in park is called Canine Commons and it is inside of a 150-acre dog friendly open space called Alston Park

Freckles the Dog

They had two different sections: 1 for small and/or shy dogs and 1 for everyone else...hehehe! :-D Since I was feeling a bit tired, we decided to go into the small dog area where I met a super excited (and gigantic) Yorkie  an Airedale, and another Yorkie! We ran around, chased one another, and did a whole lot of sniffing!

Freckles the Dog

The park was incredibly large and had quite a bit of vegetation, so a whole bunch to see, pee on, and sniff!

Freckles the Dog

They even had a couple of wadding pools in case you got hot! ;-)

Our final stop on the Napa Valley trail was at the Clos Du Val winery in Napa! 

Freckles the Dog

Clos Du Val was started 40 years ago and is proud to claim that they are a winery that marches to the beat of their own drummer! They do not follow wine making trends or influences, instead they hold on tight to what they love and believe in and therefore create incredible wines!!

Freckles the Dog

We thoroughly enjoyed tasting their wine and talking to them, especially after learning about their pups too! :-D Domeek walked away with a lovely bottle of their classic Cabernet, while I trotted away with a Clos Du Val tennis ball (that I have subsequently destroyed...muahahaha!)!

Freckles the Dog

I also enjoyed sampling some of their fabulous pet inspired furniture!! Oh yeah, I happily jumped into this wine barrel bed and took a snooze while the tasting was going on! Rough life, huh?! ;-D

Freckles the Dog

I am happy to report that Clos Du Val is dog friendly all year long, so make sure to add it to that growing winery list!!

Well, there you have it...my mini-vacation to Napa! I hope that I have inspired you to do a little research and find the fantastic dog-friendly businesses in your vacation area!! :-D

Have a great day everyone!


Napa Valley Get A Way

I'm dividing my excursion into two different posts, cause I realized that this was going to be waaaay too long otherwise...hehehe!

Happy Thursday Everyone!

Well, as you are all aware, this weekend I was an incredibly lucky pup and got to spend a couple of days in the beautiful Napa Valley! Considering that this was one of my first get-a-ways, I was a little nervous about what to expect, how to behave, and who I would be meeting...luckily all of my fears were completely overrated! :-D This was one of the best experiences that I have had, to date!

Freckles the Dog


Technically, we were in Napa for the Napa Humane Society's second annual PawsportNV event; 20 different wineries all over the valley, opened their doors to both humans and pups alike, giving complimentary wine tastings, treats, and discounts away!

Freckles the Dog

Fortunately, we only live an hour and a half away from Napa (without traffic problems, hehehe!), so the journey was pretty darn easy. We picked up our Pawsport at the Napa Visitor's Center on Sunday morning, where the older ladies who were working fell in LOVE with me!! :-D Then, after a quick sniff, we were off to our first winery!

Freckles the Dog
Care of V. Sattui

Vittorio Sattui began his wine making journey in 1885 in San Francisco; originally selling his St. Helena wine directly to the customer by horse drawn carriage and then transporting the barrels all the way up to Washington state! After a 60 year snooze, thanks to prohibition, his great-great grandson Dario started the family business up again, this time in the Napa Valley!

Freckles the Dog

Now a days, when you visit V. Sattui Winery, you get a full fledged experience...including three different tasting rooms, a deli and marketplace (with excellent cheeses, yum!), and 2 acres of picnic areas!! :-D

Freckles the Dog

There were probably over a hundred visitors on the property when we arrived, some dining al fresco, others shopping, many people tasting, and even a couple with doggies! :-D 

Freckles the Dog

While we were there, we got to meet Baci the winery's Bernese Mountain dog, who was incredibly friendly (excuse the pathetic photo) and the winery's president Mr. Tom Davies, who was hanging with Baci! All of the staff were amazing, everyone kept coming up to me and saying "Hi" and giving me a good tickle! :-D

Freckles the Dog

Domeek was really surprised that I was not only well behaved, but also pretty calm, especially with that many people all around me (ignore the shocked look...this was after meeting Baci for the first time)! :-D 

Freckles the Dog

For those of you who are interested, V. Sattui is dog friendly, all year round and I highly recommend visiting!! They are known for their Madeira and Port dessert wines...that were like "liquid candy" according to Domeek! ;-)

Then it was off to Grgich Hills Estate, hahaha, try pronouncing that one...yeah, like we told the winery staff, "there's not enough vowels!"

Freckles the Dog
Care of Grgich Hills Estate

Mike Grgich started his wine career in 1976 when his 1973 Chateau Montelena Chardonnay earned the world's finest wine title at the celebrated "Paris Tastings" in France! After this incredible start, Mike opened the Estate and vineyards in Rutherford and has continued to fashion amazing wines that have been served at State dinners. Mike is now one of the oldest wine creators in the area at 89 years old...and still works everyday to improve the quality of Grgich wine!

Freckles the Dog

Grgich Hills Estate is far smaller than a place like Sattui, but there is a sense of comfort, familiarity, and knowledge etched in the entire estate! :-D The grounds are quite beautiful and allow for a pup to run around a bit, without getting into too much trouble! Hehehe!

Freckles the Dog

We met a pup (and his family) named Charlie while we were there, who was very nice and well behaved! We also met the winery dog, a rather large, yet lovely, female labradoodle! Hehe! She was all about meeting and greeting all the visitors!

Freckles the Dog

The winery only produces 6 different wines, but each is highly acknowledged and well respected! Since we are only red people, we avoided the glorious Chardonnay and headed immediately for the Zinfandel, which was the most unique wine Domeek has ever tasted! It had jalapenos in it...omd, it was actually incredibly spicy which was pretty surprising! Hehehe!

Freckles the Dog

Grgich Hills Estate is dog friendly all year round, so if you are in the area...make sure that you drop by and say "Hi" to Miss Labradoodle! :-D

After a couple of blocks further down the road, we happened upon the Peju Family Winery! OMD, this was the most beautiful winery that we came across during our entire visit! The grounds are absolutely stunning!

Freckles the Dog

The Peju Family is relatively new to the wine business having only started their journey in 1982, but if we tasted what they are made of...well, they are going straight up and to the right!! :-D Mr. Tony Peju was inspired by the Caspian Sea, France, England, and Los Angeles when creating his family estate and now he is inspiring the youngest generation to continue the legend!

Freckles the Dog

We saw a really cute couple getting engaged while we were sniffing around the waterfall...Domeek got all "aw" and then told me that we needed to give them a little space, I just think that they were being inconsiderate of my vacation plans!!! ;-) There were 2 people hiding in the trees behind them taking photos (kind of creepy if you didn't realize what was going on...hahaha) and one of the winery's heads crying a few feet further away! Hehe, but sweet!

Freckles the Dog

We met three different pups while we were wine tasting, two Yorkies and a Shih Tzu who were incredibly friendly! All of the workers kept giving us treats...how could we say "No", I ask you?!

Freckles the Dog

They had the greatest goodie bag too, including a bag of homemade trail mix for Domeek, some cookies for me, and a split of their famous Merlot for Domeek too! Can you believe it?! They were so amazingly generous!! :-D

Freckles the Dog

The Peju Family Winery is dog friendly all year round, so make sure to put this beautiful and friendly establishment on your list of "must sees"! Oh and try their bold and delicious Syrah (Domeek might have bought a bottle or two)!! ;-)

Our last winery for the day was in the middle of Yountville...well, it's really a tasting room, but after walking through the doors, we didn't mind!

Freckles the Dog

The Hill Family Estate is truly a family affair! After farming the grapes for a lot of Napa's finest wineries, Doug Hill decided that he too should jump on the wine making train and get into business for himself! His entire family now helps produce, bottle, and sell all of the wines that they create both in Northern and Southern California!

Freckles the Dog

Their tasting room is completely different from any of the others we visited; first off, instead of a high bar and lots of standing room, the Hill Estate has a family room appeal with couches, chairs, and dinning sets. :-D We were ushered into their VIP (that's Very Important Pet) section where we enjoyed lounging on two lush leather couches and a gigantic leather ottoman!

Freckles the Dog

There were two other dogs here when we arrived including a beautiful King Charles and a funny and super hungry Puggle! The Estate gave us a goodie bag with lots of Fruitables and some yummy looking dehydrated food in it! :-D Both families were incredibly nice and gave each of us lots of treats and love!!

Freckles the Dog

We spent quite a long time talking, sipping wine, and eating nummies here! If you are visiting the area and need a little more relaxing place to hang out, I'd definitely suggest the Hill Family Estate (again they are dog friendly all year round)! If you are a bit peckish  you can also choose their Table Pairings tasting where they serve you an assortment of cheeses, meats, and bread along with their wine!

Well, as you can see...we visited lots of incredibly beautiful and pup friendly wineries on our journey through the Napa Wine Valley (and this was just on our first day)! Come back tomorrow for a look back at our hotel, restaurants, and the sights! :-D

As you can tell, I've also changed my layout and header...time for a change and I added a new page including all of the dog friendly wineries that we came across, thanks to the PawsportNV event (just in case you need some recommendations, especially since most of the websites out there only list a few "select" dog friendly (and pretty expensive) wineries)! :-D

Have a great day everyone!