Thursday, January 31, 2013

Architecture for Dogs

We love this video and the site Architecture for Dogs where you can download and create all sorts of structures for your best friend. We also love the music. We think it's a cool take on Chopin's Waltz Op 64 No 1.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Hello From Henry

Roxie's pup Henry

We just received a very cute pic and note from Henry's mom Marlene.

"Congrats to Lola on her Best of Winners awards!  When the AKC establishes a "cutie pie" ribbon, her brother Henry is definitely going to give her a run for her money!"

Monday, January 28, 2013

Carmel Valley Ranch

Puppy love: Roxy, The Carmel Valley Ranch's two-year-old English Bulldog, is always eager for a dash across the lobby, a good-luck rub, a quick treat, or a friendly welcome.

The Ranch is on our short list for a visit.   For more info, check out

Friday, January 25, 2013

Sherpa is Going to Westminster

Sherpa, CH Deep Acres Autumn Splendor

Thursday, January 24, 2013

What We're Baking Next - Buckwheat Cinnamon Rolls?

But we think, we're not sure, we are going to make this healthy version.

Recipe for Buckwheat Cinnamon Rolls

Yield: about 10 cinnamon rolls
Prep Time: 10 minutes (plus overnight for resting the dough)
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes (plus overnight for resting the dough)


For the rolls:
*2 cups buckwheat flour (I used Acadian light buckwheat flour from Bouchard Family Farm)
*3 tablespoons cold butter, preferably organic/pastured
*3/4 cup full-fat Greek yogurt
*2 eggs, preferably organic/pastured
*2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
For the filling:
*1/2 cup organic brown sugar
*2 tablespoons cold butter, preferably organic/pastured
*1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
*1/2 teaspoon ground cardamon (optional)
For the icing:
*4 tablespoons organic powdered sugar
*2 tablespoons heavy cream, preferably organic/raw


1. In a medium bowl, cut butter into flour using a pastry blender or your fingers, then mix in the yogurt, eggs, and the maple syrup with a wooden spoon. Use your hands to form the dough into a ball. Wrap dough in plastic, and store in the refrigerator overnight.
2. Remove dough from the refrigerator and heat oven to 350 degrees F. In a small bowl, make the filling by mixing the brown sugar with the butter, cinnamon and cardamom until crumbly.
3. Lightly flour your surface (use additional buckwheat flour or brown rice flour) and roll the dough out into a rectangle measuring approximately 1/4 inch thick. Sprinkle the filling all over the dough. Roll up starting at the long end closest to you, then slice the dough into 10-12 equal pieces.
4. Place cinnamon rolls on a parchment- or silpat-lined baking sheet (or use a large, well-seasoned cast iron skillet to bake them, like I did).
5. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden. Remove to a wire rack and allow to cool slightly before using a spoon to drizzle on the icing.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

A Dog at Pizza Bianco

This dog hangs on the wall of the bar next to Pizza Bianco in Phoenix.   Bianco is consistently rated the #1 pizza in the USA so we had to try it.   Pizza Bianco is located in a small historic house in the heart of downtown Phoenix. The bar sits across the garden in another very cute house.  And in the bar hangs this dog.

There's also this painting that we like of a woman.  The pizza was great - Margarita and Biancoverde (Mozarella, Parmesan, Ricotta, Arugula - we added tomato sauce).   Very, very good.  We still think Pizza Mozza in LA is THE BEST.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Little Lola and Lucca - Des Moines

She's a wiz a soccer too!

Little Lola, Deep Acres Loco Por Lola, turned 6-months last week and this past weekend she participated in the Central Iowa Kennel Club shows.   She did such a fine job strutting her stuff in the ring and took Best of Winners both days.

After the show on Saturday, Lola and dad took a nice stroll around West Village in Des Moines and did a little shopping.   Then dad had dinner at Lucca on Locust Street ( ).   Goat cheese with beets.  Gnocchi with sage.  Risotto with butternut squash.  Rigatoni with black olive pesto.   Owner and three-time-James-Beard-Award-nominee Steve Logsdon took special care and served it up right.   If you should ever find yourself in Des Moines, this is the place to go.

Lucca's Steve Logsdon, host with the most.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Candace Bushnell and Her Poodles

Candace Bushnell, who has produced six novels since “Sex and the City,” at her home in Connecticut.
The first time I met Candace Bushnell was at a party she hosted in the Time Warner Center for her husband, the dancer Charles Askegard, who was retiring from the New York City Ballet. Bushnell looked beautiful in a sleeveless Versace cocktail dress that showed off her collarbones, toned arms and radiant, faintly tan skin. She was drinking rosé through a straw.

The next time I met Bushnell was at her airy boho-chic Greenwich Village apartment, where she sat on a thronelike chair, and we talked over tea about her literary legacy. But it wasn’t until the next time that I met Bushnell, at her Roxbury, Conn., home — a short drive from where she trains in dressage — that I realized that spending time with Bushnell is like following a grown woman through a series of disconnected but equally manicured dollhouse rooms into each of which she fits perfectly. Or more simply, a Candace Bushnell fantasy world in which Candace Bushnell is both author and star. 

Bushnell, 54, has produced six novels since “Sex and the City,” few of which have deviated from the formula of “beautiful women navigating love, status and money in New York City,” or the sort of life Bushnell lived in her 20s and 30s. The CW Network recently began airing “The Carrie Diaries,” which is adapted from Bushnell’s novel about a young Carrie Bradshaw, her famous protagonist, growing up in Connecticut and defecting to New York, which Bushnell also happened to do. 

Meanwhile, Bushnell is currently at work on a more serious novel starring a new character — or maybe just an older version of the same character. “It’s about a middle-aged woman,” she said in a vaguely British accent, in a tone that sounded as if she were doing the voice-over for a trailer. “No, it’s about a woman who leaves New York and, I guess, her adventures in the country.” 

A couple of weeks ago, Bushnell greeted me in her Roxbury vacation home with her poodles Pepper and Prancer in a crisp white-and-navy Nordic-style ski sweater. After saying hello, she showed me a spread in Equestrian Quarterly in which she recently appeared, leaning against the white wooden gate to her pool house, so I could get an idea of how the place looked in summer. Her close friend and P.R. manager, Jeanine Pepler, offered me a glass of wine, and the three of us sat by the fire with chardonnay on ice, petting the dogs and cracking unshelled almonds and walnuts. 

If the scene weren’t so genuinely comfortable, it would have been unsettling how perfectly it embodied a certain kind of adolescent girl’s literary fantasies — “Baby-Sitters Club” meets “Sweet Valley High” meets “Sex and the City” meets all those young-adult books about horseback riding and pluck. We talked a little bit about the level of dressage she has advanced to (at one point she acted out a move she’s trying to get her horse to do, and pranced in place in circles). Mainly, though, we talked about her writing. For better or worse, Bushnell and her alter ego, Carrie Bradshaw, are figures that young female writers of a certain stripe must in some way confront when considering their literary — and commercial — ambitions. At the very least, there must be some sort of secret to selling millions of books. 

“I know I’m not a wordsmith,” Bushnell said, the afternoon sun shining on her face through a wall of glass doors. “And I don’t write poetry. Sometimes I think I should, because it’s really helpful. But I always wanted to write novels. I think when I was 12, I started reading Evelyn Waugh, and I loved Evelyn Waugh so much, and I thought: This is how the world really is. If I could be Evelyn Waugh, then I would be happy.’ ” 

Bushnell writes at the computer for six hours every day, and she jots notes or bits of dialogue on scrap paper too. “I have these pieces of paper all over the place,” she said, picking up a loose scrap on the coffee table and reading from it. “ ‘I’ve come to extract my revenge, sir,’ ” she said in the vaguely English accent. “ ‘Your revenge? Why, you’re — um — surely a lad — what revenge?’ ‘Silence!’ ‘Speak, boy. Speak of what you speak!’ ” She laughed. “And then — I don’t know. Just notes.” 

In the year or so that passed between our meetings, and in something of a bad “Sex and the City” plot twist, Bushnell and her husband divorced. (He had an affair with a younger ballerina, court papers contend.) The depth to which it bothered her was hard to tell, but what was obvious, amid the continually ringing landline, the dogs sleeping on the bed and the two friends eating a lunch of smoked salmon and chardonnay and telling funny stories about mistakes they’d made, was that she wasn’t going to let it. “There’s so many things that mattered so much in my 20s and 30s that don’t matter now,” Bushnell said. “You don’t have to do everything by the time you’re 30. Or 40. All you need is a work ethic.” Then she paused. “It’s what allows you to push through moments of disappointment and self-doubt and fear.”

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Dog Names - The Ultimate (Star) Guide

Francesca Beswick of pet365, an online retailer with a pet blog, asked if we would share some of their cool graphics on our blog. We can't help wondering if George Washington had all those dogs at the same time. I can imagine them running around Mount Vernon. Can't you? We heard that Ethel Kennedy had 18 or so dogs at one time. And horses that ran around in the front yard. And a seal! I'm not kidding. It's true. The Kennedy children remember it quite fondly. Anywho....I think I might like to be called Lady Rover. Who wouldn't? Dog Names
Dog names graphic produced by Matt Beswick for Pet365. Click here to view the full post.

Friday, January 18, 2013

How Do You Play with Your Dog?

The Horowitz Dog Cognition Lab is run by Dr. Alexandra Horowitz, author of Inside of a Dog: What Dogs See, Smell, and Know. The Barnard University research group is based in New York City, and they study the behavior and cognition of companion dogs. Read more about them and their research at  

They are presently investigating play between dogs and people, and they need your help (well, you and your dog's help)!

Here is the info provided on their website,

Show us how you play!

 We are exploring all the different ways people and dogs play together. Join the study in these easy steps:
  1. Complete a short survey
  2. Upload a video of you and your dog playing i.e. you are in the video playing with your dog (however you like to play together)
  3. Share a picture of you and your dog on our Wall of Contributors (optional)
That's it!
Project: Play with Your Dog is open to anyone, in any country. If you live with a dog, we want to see you play. This is a rare opportunity for dog owners across the globe to get involved in scientific research into dog behavior. We hope to collect many videos, so please tell your dog friends. Thank you for playing!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Learning by Walking Around

In her new book, On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes, Alexandra Horowitz—author of the wildly popular Inside of a Dog—enlists the attention and insights of others to discover more about the neighborhood in which she lives. But when it comes to really getting the inside scoop, who better to turn to than dogs, those “creatures of the nose”?

Alexandra recently spoke with Bark Magazine.

Bark: What was the inspiration for your new work, On Looking?
Alexandra Horowitz: Dogs, naturally. The book relates a series of walks I took “around the block” in Manhattan with various people whose expertise allows them to see aspects of the ordinary landscape that I might have missed—a geologist, a naturalist, an artist, a sound engineer. I got the idea from taking so, so many walks with my dogs over the years and starting to see what it was that they saw (smelled). Their aesthetic, their way of experiencing the block, rubbed off on me, and eventually, I found a block without trees or fireplugs boring (even if I couldn’t smell their trunks or bases like the dogs did). I was interested in all the different things there are to see on an ordinary walk, so these walks helped me look at a familiar scene with new eyes.
B: In one of the chapters, you “look” as you see your dog does, more by smell than by vision. How were you able to get into a dog’s “nosescape”?
AH: We naturally view dogs’ behaviors as being about what they see: if a dog faces us, we assume that she is looking at us. But if you look closely at dogs’ noses, what they are mostly doing is smelling. Watch a dog sit face into the windwith a boring landscape but her nose is twitching wildly and you’ll see what I mean. All I did on the walk with my dog, Finnegan, was let him lead—and I followed where his nose took us.
B: What did that tell you about a dog’s experience of the walk?
AH: The dog’s perception of a “walk” is radically different than ours! For a dog, the street is not the same each time you step out of the house—it has “evidence” (odors) of all the people, dogs, other animals, passing cars and trash and rainstorms that have happened since you last left the house. And, of course, the elements of the scene that are interesting to a creature of the nose are going to be quite different than those we visual creatures like to look at.
B: Did you observe other differences in the ways a dog perceives the landscape/environment? For example, in the time it took to do the walk?
AH: We humans tend to walk straight from A to B, not loitering much. For a dog, I think, the ideal walk is non-linear—it is pursuing that scent underfoot into the breeze and around the corner. It’s not an even pace: dogs will walk with us, at our plodding rate, but most would rather rush ahead and then hang back. The interesting things don’t pop up at our pace.
B: Did your dog linger at landmarks, and if so, why do you think he did that?
AH: He did, but the landmarks for him were things like a stoop where (we discovered later) another local dog and his person live; the many, many balusters along a building at our corner, all of which held, presumably, odor-prints of past canid visitors; and an unusual commotion in one building entrance. He didn’t seem that interested in a local Fireman’s Memorial, which is sometimes visited by clutches of tourists, guidebooks in hand.
B: Do you think we can refine our sense of smell by watching our dogs? Perhaps using our sense of smell differently, or doing more sniffing?
AH: I love this question, as it assumes that we might want to smell more. I sense that most people don’t want to, given that, unlike to dogs, we tend to find so many smells unpleasant in various ways. But I have gotten more interested in smelling as information: I walked with a doctor who talked about how many diseases can be diagnosed by smell, though this practice is no longer common. But simply by bringing attention to smell—by bothering to inhale through your nose and think about it—when you’re walking, you can take advantage of the considerable olfactory ability that we already have. There is a surprising lot there. If you don’t want to do this, just watch your dog carefully, and enjoy knowing that she is seeing the world through her nose.

Friday, January 11, 2013

The Best Date Bar Recipe Ever

My dad loves date bars, but the last time he remembers having one was years ago from a little corner store near a cottage he was staying at on Mount Desert Island in Maine.   He would stop there nearly everyday.   You may be wondering why it took him so long to come up with this recipe.  He did and it is awesome

Lola's Date Bars
  • 2-1/2 cups pitted dates, cut up
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, optional
  • 1-1/4 cups flour (we used white whole wheat flour)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1-1/2 cups quick-cooking oats
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoon water 
  • In a saucepan, combine dates, sugar and water. Cook, stirring frequently, until very thick. Stir in walnuts; cool.
  • Sift the flour, salt and baking soda together in a large bowl; add oats and brown sugar. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle water over mixture; stir lightly. Pat half into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Spread with date mixture; cover with remaining oat mixture and pat lightly.
  • Bake at 350° for 35-40 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack. Cut into bars. Yield: 40 bars.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Bonne Annee et Bonne Sante

Rachel and Sugar

Sugar sent an email to wish me a Happy New Year, but she wrote it in French.

I'll translate:

Dear Grandma Suddie:
 Happy New Year!


Short and sweet.  Just what one would expect from a girl named Sugar.

Pretty as a Picture

But, yes, Sugar does speak French and several other languages too.  We think her best friend Rachel is a very good influence.  Don't you?

Congratulations Rachel on your new private school in Chicago.  Write and tell us all about it.  Does Sugar walk to school with you in the morning?

And, whoa, Rachel your pictures show you are becoming a young lady (and Sugar too...she's a year-and-a-half now isn't she?).  It seems just yesterday you sent us this email in anticipation of Sugar's arrival.  Have you taught her to dance yet?

Gam-Gam Suddie Wants a Ribbon for Her Hair Too

Dear Suddie,
I'm giving away my birthday presents to a family in need. My mom called the red cross to try and find a family in need but we didn't get an answer yet. There have been several house fires in our  area, so I know there is a family in need. I was inspired by Max Rohr he gave away his birthday presents  to a local hospital.

 I'm very excited about the new puppy! I'm sure I'll enjoy having a very energetic dog around the house. I'm going to teach the dog many tricks. The tricks will be old and new. At first simple tricks like roll over and stay, next complicated tricks like dance or something like that.