Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Recipe for Tolerable Office Coffee

Mix 5 parts crappy coffee with 1 part hot water. Add packet of no sugar added hot chocolate, 1-2 yellow sweetener packets (or blue if office doesn't have yellow. If office only has pink, fire up the resume) . Stir. Add milk (or milk substitute if you've forgotten to bring in your own milk). Voila! Free or nearly free mocha. Bonus points for shaking your milk and spooning in the foam.

Monday, July 28, 2008


We went camping this weekend with friends Kevin, Heather and Greg as well as Sunapee and Bridger. This brought us back up North towards Mendocino, only not on the coast so with much nicer weather. We stayed in Hendy Woods (with about 100 other groups) which was pretty nice, especially for a last minute plan.

First order of business (well, second after lunch and a beer), was to bring the dogs to the river for a swim. Then we enjoyed the day setting up camp, cooking some steak, chicken, corn on the cob, playing cards and enjoying each other's company around the fire.

Sunapee is very confident with the river and had more success than he normally does in the ocean.

The hike to the river and the swimming definitely tired out Sunapee.

Kevin cooked and ate with what Heather calls his Crocodile Dundee knife.

Swimming and Diving

We took Sunapee on his first camping trip this weekend. The campsite search hinged on having a place where he could practice his swimming skills without the threat of waves. He is not the most graceful or efficient swimmer, but he swims enthusiastically. Most of the time, he swims almost frantically, making sure his head is out of the water - paws flailing above the surface. His other peculiar stamp on the swim is when he reaches the stick, he dives for it, looking like a very small polar bear.

In some of these videos you can hear us all laughing at his crazy stroke. In others, you can hear his snarfing for air.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Mendocino Weekend

Matt and I spent a long weekend in Mendocino to celebrate our first anniversary. We had a nice drive up, with a pit stop in Mill Valley so Matt could tutor and I played with Sunapee at the dog park. Also along the way, we stopped at the Marin Mazda/Subaru dealership to buy/install a dog gate in the wagon, allowing us to bring Sunapee's travel crate into the hotel and not have to traipse it in & out. Using our guidebook to having a dog in California, we had a burger lunch at an oceanside (and parking lot-side) grill with the Pee at our feet in Bodega Bay.

We stayed at one of the MacCallum House buildings and enjoyed a great room with a private patio and hot tub. Friday in Mendocino was clear and beautiful so we enjoyed a drink on the deck before dinner at the MacCallum House restaurant.

Saturday, Matt unfortunately woke up feeling ill, so he spent the day in bed napping, watching the Yankees and consuming saltines and ginger ale. I spent the day on our private deck reading and hanging out with the Pee.

View from MacCallum House deck Friday

Walking around town Saturday with Sunapee

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Jews for Jesus?

Add this to the odd things you see in San Francisco, I just passed 4 people sporting "Jews for Jesus" t-shirts on the Embarcadero Muni station. Too bad they were too busy paying their fare to hand me a flier, as now I'm curious.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

One year ago

Here's to the first great year.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Puppy Update

Sunapee is about 4 1/2 months old and growing faster than a weed. The change from when we first brought him home at 9 weeks is amazing. Life at home with puppy has improved and become significantly easier.

  • Sunapee successfully completed 2 concurrent Puppy Kindergarten classes (we didn't want to risk under-training him) and is halfway through Puppy II (just one class now). I'm proud to say he is one of the star pupils and learns very quickly. Commands he knows now include:
    • Sit (tho he doesn't quite get the command if he's already lying down)
    • Down
    • Stay (ok, this one is still a work in progress, but it's not bad)
    • Wait (also new, but he's good at it)
    • Let's Go! (walk with me)
    • Heel! (walk RIGHT next to me)
    • Gentle (take this treat but leave my fingers intact, please)
    • Come! (They say this is one of the most important and he gets it every time. The key? We use meat based baby food, aka puppy crack, as the reward.)
  • Sunapee has graduated from puppy day care to beach trips when we're at work. The fine people who run this program say Sunapee is the only dog in the group they trust off leash because of the aforementioned Come! training.
  • Sunapee has had all his shots and can now actually enjoy the parks, so now he gets to play fetch on the grass at Golden Gate Park until the cows come home.
  • He has grown from ~18 lbs when we brought him home to over 45 lbs. His ears and paws have grown faster than the rest of him, but really, it makes him extra cute.
  • He happily hops in the car to go anywhere and no longer tries to hop out of the crate top if it's open (see pic below). This is new and it cracks me up to look back and see his little head sticking out.
  • Cats are still not fond of him but will occasionally get close enough that they sniff each other's noses.
  • Sunapee is definitely social. He met his first baby on Sunday (pics to come) and didn't mind her pokes, didn't bring his teeth anywhere near her and just licked her face a few times, prodding her to push him away.

Tomorrow we're heading up to Mendocino, puppy in tow, for an anniversary get away. Fingers are crossed he behaves there as well as he does at home! Thankfully someone invented the travel crate.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Sunday Afternoon Shenanigans

Friends Lisa and Preston with baby Olivia came over Sunday 7/13 to catch up and have lunch. They hadn't seen the place yet, and unfortunately the living room walls were still in a state of mismatched test colors. The boys were mostly entertained by Wii Fit as Preston and Matt had quite the Hula-Hoop, Ski Jump and Balance Tables competition going. Lisa, Olivia and I mostly giggled at them, but Lisa and I took a few turns ourselves, of course.

I took the opportunity to make a lamb dish perfected by Betty Ann of "Bloomfield Gang" fame (or infamy, depending on which stories you've heard). It was a hit and I was lucky to have leftovers for a few lunches at work.

Lisa and Preston happily handed Olivia over to the childless to play with and Olivia liked petting the dog - as long as that pesky tongue didn't get her.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

July 4th Hiking

To get away from the fog on July 4th, we headed up to Mill Valley with Toby, Steve, Brian and Sunapee for a 6.5 mile hike up in the foothills of Mt. Tam. It was the first hike for "The Pee" and he was a trooper. He did occasionally express his desire to stop and lie down in the shade but he marched on.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Had to see it to believe it

I just about keeled over last Sunday when Toby requested a Bud Light at Taylor's. I have never witnessed her drink anything but red wine or a cosmo. She states that she'll have 5 or 6 every summer when she's more in the mood for a refreshing beverage. I can appreciate that.