Wednesday, March 31, 2010

My Secret Crush

I guess if I'm blogging about it - the SECRETS OUT!
Good thing Due can't read!


Don't get me wrong. I do NOT consider myself a 2-timing hussy (Due - I still love you).

I have NEVER actually cheated on Due - but I have admired BEN from afar. Fine - I hear that's often referred to as "emotional infidelity" - get over it - I'M A DOG!
(Mom's got her Clooney thing...I've got my Ben thing).
I'm pretty sure the feeling is mutual. Ben even drew a lovely Valentine for me at the beach and posted it on his blog.

BEN lives 3,000 miles away - in a wonderful land filled with surf, sand and sunshine. Since Mom grew up in Southern California - she has assured me that SAN DIEGO is indeed - almost heaven.

What makes Ben so fascinating (besides his drop dead gorgeous red-headed looks of course) his character. He's smart, he's charming, and most of all - he makes me laugh. (Yea I know - sounds like Clooney). Ben has an amazing story. He, his golden brothers, and more importantly - his peeps - are awe inspiring.

Here is the short version of Ben's story.

BEN was hit by a car just days before Christmas of 2008. His original people (or as I like to think of them, "Pond Scum with Legs")....did not take Ben to the vets...FOR 3 DAYS. (Gee - so sorry his little accident got in the way of your holiday plans). So 3 days later - with a broken leg and an infection that is getting worse by the hour ...they - in true "Pond Scum" fashion, sign him over to the vet.... as in..."here, you take care of him, we're outta here".

Fortunately the Vet (Dr. Burns...who I bet looks like George Clooney) - contacts the Southern California Golden Retriever (SCGR) Rescue - who literally "came to the rescue".

Ben (Hogan) goes home with his foster peeps...who have already have 3 golden boys of their own. Lance (Armstrong), Tiger (Woods) and Coop (as in Cooperstown). After months of surgeries and meds, cones and vet visits - the decision is made that for Ben "Life is Better on 3 Legs than 4". He joins the world of tri-paws and shows all of us what one can do with a positive attitude.

Now BEN is living the good life. His Foster Peeps (and their 3 golden guys) took a vote - and in a unanimous decision decided that BEN should be a permanent member of the family. So now he's got 3 brothers, gets to go to work with Mom, LIVES IN THE LAND OF SUNSHINE. Sweet. (And of course he has me....pining over him from the big city)

Ben's peeps do a lot of work with another amazing organization, Homeward Bound.
It's like the underground railroad of golden rescues. A network of Angles pick up goldens and transport them to the nearest foster home or rescue organization. Ben's peeps continue to foster additional pups in their home.

If you have the too can help save another Ben.

Check out Ben's blog, and you just might fall in love....just remember...hands off - he's mine!

Thanks to Ben's Mom for sending us these photos to include in my blog post.
Of course I might just might put my copies on the fridge!
****NOTE From Mom - yes- the font size is all over the place in this post -
I tried to fix it. Can't figure it out. UGH!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Did YOU steal my sunshine?

Someone did!

It's dark, it's dreary, it's I'll just hang out here with Due until you bring my sunshine back....
Please try to have it back by Saturday...I have plans that require a bright sunny day....

Monday, March 22, 2010

What Are You Lookin' At?

(Note from Mom...this is what I found upon entering the
apartment this evening....after walking home in the rain)

This is the way ALL dogs sleep on a couch....
and since it's raining outside I really don't see why I should move.

Again....NOT MOVIN.....

Wake me up when it stops raining. Until then...MY COUCH.

Saturday, March 20, 2010


How do you know when it's SPRING?

The daffodils start blooming....

The new grass is just right for rolling in....

There are plenty of sticks for chomping.....(oh - and wedding parties taking pictures)

And best of all....there's lots of MUD....
Did I mention there's mud!

The perfect day for hanging out with my buddy Due....

Although apparently he overexerted himself with the springtime activities ....
and had to be carried part of the way home....poor baby!

We hope all of you were able to get out and enjoy the beautiful weather (at least here in the east). Of course Mom is still confused about what constitutes a "workday" as opposed to a "vacation day" or even a "weekend". I hear rumblings that she is going into work tomorrow due to coverage of the Healthcare Vote in Congress.

Fortunately my man Due does know Sunday is for family (and loved ones) - so I might be spending some time with him and his peeps tomorrow.

ENJOY SPRING WHILE YOU CAN - we're expecting to be in the
40's again next week!

Monday, March 15, 2010

The Creative Process

I’ve been keeping on eye on Mom to see exactly how she comes up with her ideas for Central Bark Designs pet (really dog) placemats….this is what I found out.

It starts with inspiration. Sometimes that comes from one of the many design magazines she curls up with – sometimes something we see in a Madison Avenue store window – and sometimes – it comes from the blogs we like to read.

This is the story of the creation of our newest design, The Greenwich Village Bone.

It all started when we spotted some great home texiles on Pigtown Design’s blog.

Then it’s time to doodle on a sketch pad….first we have to figure out how to add the “dog” element to it. That’s either a bone or paw.

After coming up with the basic concept – it’s time to try it out on canvas. We (Mom – no thumbs here) – sketch the entire design to see if it works…then it’s time to paint.

First the background. And yes – we paint over a lot of the initial sketch - but we now know what we’re looking for….

Then we add the colors in layers. Sometimes with a dark background like this one – we need to use a lighter base so the colors will pop.

Next comes the detailing…..

Then we varnish….And hem…..

I supervise all steps of the operation...

And finally – coat with bowling alley paste wax to protect it from drippy water dogs….I’ve had mine for five years – so it must work!

Of course if we haven’t named the design now we stare at it (a glass of wine helps) and come up with which NYC neighborhood or landmark best describes the design…

(Due’s Mom is genius at this step….she’s named most of our designs).

This one felt a little Boho Chic from the start….perfect for Greenwich Village!

We’ve been busy this week coming up with new designs for our 2010 Collection….

The Canal Street Bone

The Lexington Avenue Bone

The Columbus Circle Bone

And the Radio City Dancing Bones!

All this creating is exhausting!

Check out all of our designs at!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Here We Go AGAIN

Take a a cookie.
It's a simple concept that my man Due is having trouble with.
He's in guard and growl mode - so I refuse to enter the living room until he adjusts his attitude.

Mom helped . Apparently her lunch - of homemade sliders looked very enticing.
Du should know better. We don't get people food in this house.
But as long as he's distracted - time to clean up the cookies being left on the floor!
I hear today's cooking segment will be something called "TollHouse Cookies" and that they are NOT for the 4-legged ones. I need to check but I think that is a clear violation of some statute in the
"This is My House and I am In Charge" Rulebook.

And as far as this being my house....sure Mom pays the mortgage, and the maintenance...etc. But I am the one who spends the most time here. Therefore - it's my apartment. And although it was "nice" of her to take the week off and hang out at home with me...and have Due join us...its time for both of them to find something else to do. I've taken to hiding in whatever room those 2 are not in. And Due - sleeping with my person is getting really old - when I jump up for my traditional morning belly rub - THAT'S MY TIME....back off Shorty.

Of course - there's something to be said for having an instant playmate. And it's great fun to empty the toy basket of all the stuffies and spread them around the living room....then watch Mom collect them all....and start all over...
(I'm a dog people, my needs are simple).

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Stay-cation, Day 3

The great thing about a vacation - whether you go somewhere far away - or, like us, stay right at home....
the great thing is NO SCHEDULE!

Today - Day 3 - we napped. A lot.
We spread out.....

We tucked in tight to the furniture (this helps to leave your golden locks attached to everything)

Due even grabbed HALF of the couch - which is a feat for a small(er) dog!

Best of all...thanks to Ben's comment on our STAY-cation, Day 2 post - Mom felt compelled to bake again today.


Here's what you'll need:

1/2 cup canola oil

1/2 cup shortening

1 cup honey

2 eggs

3 3/4 cups flour

2 teaspoons cream of tartar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 cup cornmeal

2 teaspoons cinnamon

Using a stand mixer, mix oil, shortening and honey together until smooth. Add eggs and beat well.

Blend in flour, baking soda and cream of tartar. Knead dough until mixed well.

Shape dough by rounded teaspoons into balls.

Mix the cornmeal and cinnamon together in a bowl and roll balls in mixture.

Place 2 inches apart on a baking sheet sheet that has been sprayed with a nonstick spray (or use a silpat mat). Press the balls down .Using a soda bottle cap, and your finger…make paw imprint on dough.

Bake 10 minutes at 400*.

Let cool on baking sheet for a couple of minutes before placing on cooling rack.

This is when the camera ran out of juice. So what you don't get to see is Due - not eating - but GUARDING his cookie. I'm thinking there's a 5:00 rule. If it's still there in 5:00 - then it's free to any other 4-legged redhead in the house (ME!). Growling at your hostess is not acceptable - BEN would never do that!
(Growling at your hostess's Mom will get you thrown in jail)

You also don't get to see the mats Mom has been working on (while I supervise of course). Maybe tomorrow...we'll see. You never know what will happen when you don't have a schedule!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

STAY-cation Day 2

CENTRAL PARK - on a weekday!
I can almost forgive Due for sleeping IN THE BED WITH MOM... - I don't remember the last time we got to enjoy weekday romp in Central Park!

First stop - Central Park Zoo. We have to remain leashed up for the stroll through the zoo. For some reason, Mom wanted to stop at the sea lions (or are they seals?). It was a calm sunny morning so they were sunning themselves. As you can see, Due and I wanted nothing to do with this.

This is what we were looking for....freedom and rock climbing!

Tails up - full speed ahead! You all know Due is charging right at me in this pic -
he likes to dive bomb smack dab into me!

No coffee. No BACON. Mom was a little nervous having both of us off leash with the roads open to traffic. On weekends - the roads in Central Park are closed to cars - on weekdays - lots of cabs and town cars - and everyone is in a hurry. We were happy with a little play and a long stroll.
Spring is coming....

I could get use to this STAY-cation life style.
Long walks in the morning, followed by naptime for dogs, painting and etsy-time for Mom,
then we have time to blog - and best of all
that's followed by time to bake and cook.
Can't wait to see what tomorrow brings.
I think Mom forgot about cleaning out the closets!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Stay-cation Day 1

Mom started her stay-cation yesterday by going to Washington, D.C. for a survey of the upcoming Nuclear Security Summit. Someone please explain to her that taking time off work - means

I won't count Monday - so today is day 1 of our stay-cation. And what a day it has been.

First - we (Due is here for the stay-vation as well) got up early and were out the door for a nice long walk this morning. Mom says 2 dogs means no camera. The woman needs to learn to multi-task here at home as well as the office!

Mom made us a new treat - PUMPKIN BISCOTTI!

We're waiting.....
Here are all the ingredients....
1 Cup Canned pumpkin
1/4 Cup Honey
1/4 Cup Water
2 Tbl Canola Oil
1 Large Egg
1 tsp Vanilla

4 Cups flour
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda

Preheat oven to 350*

In a large bowl whisk together the wet ingredients (Pumpkin through vanilla)
Add remaining dry ingredients and mix well.

Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth.

(Mom got too busy making the goodies and neglected the photographer duties!)

Next divide the dough into 2 logs - 4" wide. Press flat.

Place on baking sheet with parchment (or Silpat mat - Mom's favorite kitchen accessory).
With a fork - pierce holes all over the surface.

Bake for 40 minutes.

Cool in pan - on rack for 30 minutes.

Using a serrated knife - slice each log crosswise into 1/4 inch slices.

Place slices on baking sheet - bake 40 minutes longer - or until completely hard.

Transfer cookies to a rack and cool completely.

(And I think I should get extra good dog bonus points for poising for this photo and NOT grabbing the entire bowl of biscotti!)

Check out for more tasty dog treats!

I hear there "might" be a trip to the BIG PARK tomorrow. Mom thinks if she doesn't say Central Park we won't get it...please...we know. We're dogs. It's our job!

Now we have to get back to our fun job - creating new mats for Central Bark Designs. Check back later for a look at our newest designs...Canal Street, Columbus Circle and Radio City Bonettes!