Sunday, December 23, 2012

Santa Sunday and the Difference Between Me & Jake

Last weekend, I went to see Santa.

This is what happened when I went to see Santa:

So how do I know you're the real Santa?

Mom, I'm not too sure about this guy

Take the photo if you must

But I'm not getting any closer to this dude
Photos by Carla Edwards Lawrence 

And this is what happened when Jake went to see Santa:

(This was taken shortly after Jake had run around the place & knocked down 3 small Christmas trees. According to mom, such behavior was "classic Jake".)

Photo by Saved Images Photography, 2006

Saturday, December 22, 2012

BOL BLOGGER AWARD!!! and a case of BMS

Thanks so much Ranger!!!

My young Scottie friend Ranger just gave me his BOL Blogger Award!  

This makes me very happy because the whole point of my blog is to make people & their pups (& any other creatures who happen to read my blog) smile and laugh.  So if I make you BOL, that's GREAT!

This is a super-easy award.  All you have to do is pass it to another blogger who makes you BOL.

I hereby award the BOL Blogger Award to my buddy Reuben of Floppy Tongue Joy.

Thanks for making us BOL, Reuben!

Reuben is one of the most entertaining dudes I know.  If you're not familiar with him, check out Floppy Tongue Joy.  I promise it will make you BOL! 

I haven't been blogging much lately because I have a case of BMS - Busy Momma Syndrome.  I have SO much to blog about, but apparently my staff has other priorities.  Hopefully she will have time to catch up a bit because she has 4 DAYS OFF from her other job.  This is very exciting for all of us!  We're planning some major mommy-and-me time and of course we plan to do some hiking.  Momma says Santa's gonna' visit, but I have to admit I wasn't really enamored by him when I met him last weekend.  But if he wants to bring me presents, that's awesome!

Speaking of Santa, I've entered the Wag-in-the-Box Naughty & Nice Photo Contest.  We were asked to submit a photo of something we would like Santa to overlook.  If you have a minute, could you please click here and vote for me?  Thanks!!!

Monday, December 10, 2012

One Sweeeeeeeeeeeet Award!

I have been awarded the Super Sweet Blogging Award by Echo & Link of Husky's Life and Sheba's life story!!!  

I am extremely honored to have been given this award, especially by Echo & Link and Sheba, whose blogs we really enjoy.  

Merci beaucoup Echo et Link!  
Thank you so much Sheba!

With this award comes certain duties.  First I must answer the “super sweet” questions :

1. Cookies or Cake?
Both!  I love cookies, and I love cake!  My favorite cakes are from Three Dog Bakery, and they're yummilicious!  And I love ALL KINDS of cookies!

My birthday cake from Three Dog Bakery

Super-yummy cookies my momma made
(covered with carob, not chocolate)

Three Dog Bakery cookies are awesome too!

2. Chocolate or Vanilla?
Momma says I can't eat chocolate because I'm a dog and chocolate is bad for dogs, but I'm not buying it.  I think she just wants all the chocolate for herself because she's such a chocolate fiend.  So unfortunately I have no access to chocolate because momma thinks it will hurt me, so I guess I'm stuck with vanilla.  Honestly, I haven't met a flavor I didn't like.

3. What is your favorite sweet treat?
Frosty Paws!  No surprise there.  I also like cakes from Three Dog Bakery.  (See response to question #1 above.)  And apples.  And peanut butter.

Enjoying a refreshing cup of
Frosty Paws

4. When do you crave sweet things the most?
Always.  I'm a lab, so I'm always hungry.  Always.  If I don't have access to something sweet, I'll resort to paper products.

Phone books are an acquired taste

5. If you had a sweet nickname, what would it be?
I have lots of silly nicknames, including Muffin, Lab-a-muffin, and Muffaletta.  In no way do I resemble a muffin or a muffaletta, so I have no idea where the humans get this stuff.

Next I must pass on the award to a baker's dozen of my favorite bloggers.  I have so many favorites, I could make a list a mile long.  So I've tried to chose blogs that my readers may not yet know about that I think they will enjoy.

Pawsitively Pets
One Blue Dog
Gemma's Little Gems
Alasandra, the Cats and a Dog
Cotton's Candy
Terrier Torrent
Loveable Lily
Belly Rub Please
Life With Beagle
My Girlz Got Pawz
Life at Golden Pines
Susie and Sidebite
Floppy Tongue Joy

I love awards, but I realize they can be very time-consuming for our staff, many of whom have a lot of other stuff to do, and LOTS of extra stuff this time of year.  And I know some bloggers just aren't into awards or they don't really fit into their blog format, and that's okay.  So if you don't have the time or inclination to pass on the award, we understand -- we still like you and we'll still keep loving your bloggies!  And it still gives our other friends a chance to check out some blogs they may not have heard of yet.

Okay, enough blogging, I want a cookie!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Super Sparkly Saturday - GardenFest of Lights

A couple weeks ago, mom and I went to the GardenFest for Fidos at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden.  The GardenFest of Lights is an annual event at the garden, and on the GardenFest for Fidos nights, they allow dogs!  Mom and I had never been, so we decided to check it out.  The lights and decorations were amazing!

If you live in the Richmond, Virginia area, the next GardenFest for Fidos is on January 3.  The suggested $2 pet admission goes to benefit the Richmond SPCA.  The lights are beautiful and it's a great reason to get out with your human and support a great cause.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Garth's Gift Guide!!!

Welcome to my first EVER edition of 

Garth's Gift Guide!

Since it's the time of year when many of us are thinking of Christmas shopping, I thought I would provide you with some gift ideas. 

I like to support small businesses and local businesses, and I love to get cool stuff.  Here are a few of my favorite products (which would make GREAT gifts for the pups in your life), in no particular order.

1. Collars from Coconut Retriever
Coconut Retriever collars are very colorful, and you can pick from a number of different patterns.  The collars look great and they're very well made.  They're hand made in the U.S. and we think the prices are quite reasonable ($12 to $20).  The collars are made of webbing covered with cloth, with heavy-duty buckles and D-rings, so they're very strong.  They're also washable, which is a plus for those of us who like to get dirty. 

We bought one Coconut Retriever collar when we were in Key West last year and two this year.  Back in October, we met the woman who makes them, and we always see her brother with his cart on the corner of Duval and Eaton Streets.  Mom thinks it's great when she can meet the person who actually makes the products she buys. 

This is the collar I got last year
It's one of my favorites

This is my new pirate collar

This is my other new collar
The tropical pattern makes us think of Key West

Coconut Retriever also makes very cute doggie clothes in wonderful, colorful patterns.

2. Wag-in-the-Box membership
With a Wag-in-the-Box membership, you receive a box full of dog-related goodies each month.  It gives you a chance to try new products and brands without buying a whole big bag of things.  

We met the Wag-in-the-Box lady at the Fetch-a-Cure Mutt Strutt and were pleased to learn that they were based in Richmond, Virginia, because we love to buy locally.  The Wag-in-the-Box lady was very nice to me and let me try a sample of Bowser Beer.  I liked it so much she gave me another sample, then she gave me two bottles to take home with me.  (I know how to charm the ladies.)  

Mom thought it would be fun for me to try Wag-in-the-Box, so she got me a three-month membership as an early Christmas present.  We received the box a couple weeks ago, and it was FILLED with yummy stuff: Buddy Biscuits grain free treats, Buddy Biscuits dog cookie mix, Whole Life organic sweet potato treats, a Barkworthies curly bullystick, Whole Life cod treats, a Wag More Bark Less oval sticker, and a Snoutstick nose balm for dogs.  We were impressed by not only the variety and amount of goodies in the box, but also the fact that only a couple of the goodies were sample sizes -- the rest appeared to be regular size.  Based on the amount and types of products, we thought it was well worth the monthly membership fee.

There's definitely
something good in here

LOOK at all these goodies

I'm loving the Barkworthies
curly bullystick

Nom nom nom nom

For each box you purchase, Wag-in-the-Box makes a $1 donation to a nonprofit organization of your choice (you have to chose from their list, but it's a big list).  They also made an extra donation to Fetch-a-Cure because we bought our membership at the Mutt Strutt! 

Locally owned, a great product, and support of nonprofits -- this is the type of business we like to support.

3. Treats from Babka Bars
Babka is one of my dog blogging pals who lives in Key West (lucky dog).  Her mom started making these gourmet, all natural, and very yummy treats because she had difficulty finding treats with healthy ingredients for Babka.  Babka Bars have no sugar, salt, butter, oils, flavor powders or fillers and are made with real fruits, nuts, whole grain oats, whole grain flour "and a whole lot of LOVE", per Babka. Babka herself is in charge of quality control, and she taste-tests one cookie from each batch (very lucky dog).

There's even a picture of Babka on the label

We ordered some Babka Bars when we were in Key West, and mom found their customer service (Babka's mom) to be extremely nice and very helpful with suggestions about visiting Key West.  Unfortunately we missed them when we were in Key West this year, but I hope to get together with Babka for a play date on our next visit.  

When the bars came, I found them to be extremely yummy!

I hate it when mom makes me
practice impulse control

Just thinking about Babka Bars
makes me drool

Don't they look nommy?

Babka Bars also supports nonprofit organizations.  A portion of their proceeds from holiday sales will be donated to Paws 2 Care Coalition.  Bravo Babka!

4. Dog tags from Dog Tag Art
We learned about Dog Tag Art when my friend Mayzie did a product review and giveaway.  (You can read Mayzie's review here.)  Dog Tag Art's tag selection was so amazing, we had difficulty deciding, but ended up ordering the Colorful Pirate Skull tag because we liked the colors, and because I am a pirate.  Our order came promptly with no problems at all, and Mom and I LOVE my pirate tag!  I'm hoping to get another tag for Christmas.  

Name & phone number
are on the other side

At Dog Tag Art, you can even make your own custom tags out of your own photographs or graphics!  We think the prices are reasonable and we love that they don't gouge us for shipping costs (shipping is $1.99 for all U.S. orders).

The tags are made of a recycled steel core coated with a polymer and have a very high-quality look and feel.  They're made in the United States.  Dog Tag Art is based in Asheville, North Carolina, which is practically local - if you're using a very broad definition of "local".

Dog Tag Art also has a service called "Virtual Leash" that lets you maintain a unique website for your pet with unlimited emergency contacts that can be instantly notified.  We haven't looked into this service yet, but you can read about it on their website at Virtual Leash.

5. Adventure Walk for a rescue dog from Canine Adventure 
- OR -
a cool Canine Adventure Magnet
Canine Adventure - Sponsor a Rescue Dog
Canine Adventure - Magnets for Mutts
For the dog lover who has everything, why not give them a rescue dog Adventure Walk in their honor -  and make a rescue dog's Christmas!  

Looking for something smaller, more of a stocking stuffer?  For $5 you can get a super-cool-looking Canine Adventure magnet (just like the one on the Garth-mobile), and the proceeds of magnet sales during the month of December go to support the Richmond Animal League's Operation Silent Night.

Cool Canine Adventure magnet,
proudly displayed on the Garth-mobile

Canine Adventure is a Richmond, Virginia dog walking service that takes dogs on Adventure Walks.  (I go on an Adventure Walk with my buddy Tim from Canine Adventure every Wednesday.  We have a GREAT time -- it's so good to get out for a hike mid-week, and Tim is awesome!)  

Canine Adventure does a tremendous amount to support local organizations such as Fetch-a-Cure, Richmond Animal League, Ring Dog Rescue, Odessa Rescue and Rehabilitation, Adrati Rescue, and probably others.  We think the world of Canine Adventure and its founder, my buddy Josh, and we love that they do so much to give back to our community -- in addition to providing a great service!


Neither my staff nor I have been compensated in any way for including products and services in Garth's Gift Guide.  (In fact, these businesses don't even know we're listing them.)  Perhaps in the future, I will sell advertising, and a space in Garth's Gift Guide will be highly prized.  But at this point in my blogging career, I'd simply like to share with my readers information about products/services I like and that I'd like to support.  

As you can probably tell from reading this, to us it's more than just the product.  We're interested in the people behind the product (or service), where it's made, and how it's made.  When a company does good things, we want to reward them with our business and tell our friends about them.  It's that simple.