Monday, June 29, 2009

Ruggles on the Day We Met

I just came across this photo of Ruggles in my photo albums. Right now, he lies right next to me snoring... This is the day that I first met and fell in love with him. In more recent photos, he looks much more confident, happy, and energetic. But, in this photo, as well as the more recent ones, I can see his huge heart. This post is very brief but I hope you enjoy this image of Rugglito!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Close Run-In With a Cop

Working for a summer camp, my days are very long over the summer. Last week, I was driving home from Small Shed Flatbreads and the nearby coffee shop in downtown Mill Valley. It had been a long day...

I was almost to my office to drop some paperwork off when I started to notice flashing lights in my rearview mirror and then the sound loud sound of "Please pull over." I swore under my breath and pulled over, not exactly sure what I had done. I assumed that I had been speeding but really didn't think this was the case... Anyways...

The tall cop came up to my window and asked how I was doing. I replied with a truthful statement that I also hoped might help me get out of the impending ticket, "I'm alright but I really have to go to the bathroom!" The cop seemed to somewhat register this statement but he continued with his questioning. When he asked for my license, proof of insurance, and registration, I rummaged through the glovebox for my registration but was too frazzled to find it. 

Then, he asked what I was up to. I probably answered with way more info than he wanted to hear but I explained the camp I work for, the summer locations, the long hours, etc. He finally informed me that I'd run a stop sign (which I had not seen) and that I should have known where this stop sign is because I live in town. I was tempted to tell him that I almost never drive back from downtown so don't know the stop signs but I decided that the more I could agree with him, the better.

Finally, he said he'd let me off with a warning and that he'd assume that I'd just run the stop sign because "I really had to pee!" Phew! Sure, it was a little embarrassing telling a male you "gotta go" but this time it saved me what could have been a pricy ticket!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Stuck... Twice.

I rarely get "stuck." At least there are few times I've been stuck that used to come to mind... that was until the last four days. In the last four days, I have been seriously stuck... twice.

This past weekend, I enjoyed a fabulous first trip to Seattle. The sun was shining brightly, we had fun friends to schmooze with, and we loved exploring the city. Highlights included Pike Place, Belltown shops, Macrina Bakery, Wild Ginger restaurant, and Rain Sushi.

On Saturday afternoon, we were convinced by friends (after a beer) to go on the duck tour. Have you been on a duck tour before in Seattle? In another city? I went on one a long, long time ago in Boston and must admit, was not overly enthusiastic to embark on another. But I caved into the peer pressure and we headed to the duck nest (do ducks nest?).

The tour was somewhat informative (we learned about the sports teams, Seattle's 217 Starbucks, landmarks, and more). However, our driver was somewhat irritating with his frequent costume changes and cheesy humor. I also got a little bit bored with our road tour and slightly considered a nap... After about an hour on land, our duck headed into the water. This part is always the coolest. In about a minutes time, our land duck had tranformed into a sea duck. Our duck drove around looking at the floating homes, live-aboards, and house boats (and also learning about the difference). It was very cool to see the home where Sleepless in Seattle was set!

Just as we were almost back at the boat ramp, our driver/tour-guide started to say that our propeller (or some similar piece that I wasn't sure what it was...) had stopped functioning. I didn't pay much notice at first and assumed he was just trying to be entertaining. Five minutes later though, I realized that we really were stuck.

Our driver started walkie-talkying with the duck boat home base. We could all overhear his conversation and their responses came through very jumbled and impossible to understand. Eventually, he decided that he had confirmation that they were sending a "healthy" duck with a tow boat. In the meantime, a few other occupied ducks drove past us. The "tourists" on the boats decided that a new attraction on their tour was our silly-looking stuck duck boat. They quickly started snapping photos of us. The six of us in my group started simultaneosly posting Facebook status updates about our stuck duck and our need to pee.

And our driver decided to start a "name that theme song" game. Nobody seemed too into the game as I think most were hoping to get our boat moving in the near future and to avoid any claustrophobia fears. Our crew was pretty excited to sing to the Fresh Prince theme song though and dance along.

About 30 minutes passed before another duck appeared with a tow rope. We all cheered in relief and were slowly pulled to shore. They then had us disembark our duck boat and climb aboard another that was safe to drive. It felt nice to be back on solid ground!

The driver of our new duck might have been more annoying than the driver of the first. At least he had a silly joke about a duck buying lipstick at Nordstrom and the cashier asking if he should "put the lipstick on her bill" ;) When we got back, the photo crew was waiting for us (they must have been waiting much longer than usual!) trying to sell us group "before" shots. These pictures were taken as we boarded our duck more than two hours before. The photo was priced at $27 and when we asked for the pic for free as compensation, they said they were a different company than the duck tours. When I asked the guy wearing a Duck Tours polo if he could get the photo for us, he said the photo crew was a different company. We already knew this... I wanted to go back the next day to ask for our money back but ended up getting too wrapped up in being a Seattle tourist to make the trek back.

Whose duck gets stuck anyways?!

Tonight (Tuesday), I headed to a meeting at the Fairmont. I was psyched to find a parking spot about an eighth of a mile away. I parked fairly close to the car in front of me to avoid my car touching any part of the white curb behind my car. I tend to get a lot of parking tickets in San Francisco. I've had $40 or so for not turning my wheels the right way, $50 for parking in the "light pink," $100 for not sporting a front license plate (they could have opted for the $10 fix-it ticket), and two $50 tickets for street cleaning. Needlesss to say, I am very careful now not to get a parking ticket...

So, happy with my spot, I headed into my meeting. The meeting was great and I enjoyed a yummy glass of red wine but all of this is irrelevant...

When I returned to my car around 9:15 PM, I was clearly totally blocked in. Someone had not only parked in the white zone behind me, they had only left about 2 inches between their car and mind. I stopped three nice-looking guys walking along the street to ask them if there was any way that I could get out of the spot. They jokingly suggested a few super-human tricks to free my car but said, realistically, I was stuck. They recommended that I head into one of the nearby hotels to see if they had any tips.

I headed into a nearby hotel (or apartment building?) on California and met my hero of the night, Jack. Jack came out to my car to check out the situation and was the fourth to tell me there was absolutely no way I was getting out of that spot. So, Jack and I decided that I should call the Department of Parking and Traffic and the Police Department. When I couldn't get through to anyone at the DPT, I called the police who matched me in to a live person.

I felt a little bad ratting out the car behind me to the DPT with all of my own parking ticket woes. I also hoped this this would not negatively affect my parking karma. However, my parking karma seems pretty bad already so I figured it couldn't hurt too much. The DPT took down the color, make, and license plate number of the car behind me and said they'd see what they could do. They weren't sure how long it might take though.

Meanwhile, I was thinking about Ruggles at home and longing to be hanging out with him and even doing a little much-needed work. At this point, I was feeling fairly stranded in the city though.

Right before I left the scene of my car and my buddy Jack to try to meet up with some friends to kill some time, I saw someone approaches the car in front of me. When she opened the door, I was super happy and relieved. Maybe I would get home afterall!

Then she got into her car and she sat... and sat... and sat... For at least 5 minutes, she was sitting in the driver's seat and seeming to write text messages on her phone. I'm not sure if she was worried about being able to fit out of the spot or just chilling and writing some texts.

From across the street, I saw Jack watching the whole scene. I honked once lightly at the other car but it still did not budge. Then, Jack came across the street, dodging the traffic headed in both directions. I let him know that I was just waiting patiently for her to leave. So he politely went up to her window and helped direct her up forwards so that I could finally squeeze my Mini Cooper out of the tiniest parking space. When I was finally home free, I yelled out a huge "thank you" to Jack and smiled!

Be careful and be prepared because you never know when you might get stuck!

You might need a floatie to swim away from a stuck duck or a huge, strong man to push a parked car (emergency brake and all) out of your way!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Balsamic Vinegar & Popcorn

WARNING: If you are not into adventurous, daring, and random food concoctions, please do not read on. You will probably find this pretty disgusting... But, if not, please read on...

So, anyways, one of my favorite afternoon snack foods is popcorn. I've tried a lot of different microwave popcorn's. My favorite for the past two years or so is the mini natural bags of popcorn from Walgreens. For $3, you can purchase two boxes that each have six personal-sized bags. At 45 calories a bag and 40-cents each they are a pretty amazing afternoon snack!

But popcorn alone can get boring... so I've found some ways to "spice" it up. Here are some of the crazy concoctions I've come up with...

- Back in 7th grade, my friend Priscilla and I loved to make our own popcorn concoctions. I think our best ever was Milky Way bars melted over popcorn. When done right, this was delicious. However, you have to be really careful because often times the Milky Ways will start to burn and then this is NOT delicious...

- A few years ago, I decided to combine my love for hot sauce with my love for popcorn. I would pour hot sauce over my little bag of popcorn (anywhere from a little to a ton depending on my mood), mix it up, and enjoy. This combo is a little weird unless you really love hot sauce but my similarly-hot-sauce-obsessed-roommates really caught on too.

- When I was looking for something a little bit more sweet to finish my day, I'd pour a little cinnamon over my popped popcorn. Strangely, some cinnamon's are much better than others. Sweeter one's definitely taste better over the popcorn and the balance is important... too much cinnamon is really not nearly as good.

- Next, I decided to try a little chai powder mix over my popcorn. This is yummy too and even has a little tiny caffeine kick. I tend to stick to the cinnamon more often but this is great to mix it up sometimes too.

- Then, I decided it was time to try some more salty mixes. Basically, I think I just entered a salt craving era but I wanted to stick with my healthy-ish popcorn treat. We had some Kimlan soy sauce packets in our office kitchen and I found out through experimentation that 1 and 1/2 soy sauce packets over my Walgreens mini bag was perfect. You need to make sure to shake the popcorn bag up as you add the soy sauce over so the soy sauce spreads evenly. Otherwise, you end up with some very soggy popcorn. I'd also recommend eating this mix fairly quickly so that none of the kernals can get soggy.

- When we ran out of soy sauce packets, I tried fancy balsamic vinegar. This combo is also delicous. I usually have my popcorn around 5 pm and start craving my balsamic popcorn around 3 pm. If fancy ice cream shops can make balsamic ice cream, balsamic popcorn can't be that weird, can it?!

Does anyone else come up with crazy popcorn ideas or is this just me? I'm also curious to try banana slices over popcorn and maybe avocado slices too. Please let me know your thoughts on any of these popcorn concoctions if you've ever tried them. I'd love any other recommendations too!

Monday, May 18, 2009

A Great Weekend in Mendocino

The weekend of April 18th, 2009, Jeff, Ruggles, and I headed up to Mendocino for an adventurous mini-vacation.

I know that this post will not be the same without photos but I hope to add them in during the near future. Below are the highlights. I've included some of the reviews of spots I already wrote for Yelp to hopefully help this post be more useful when you are planning your own little Mendocino vacation! (which I would highly recommend you do as soon as possible!)

Thursday we excitedly headed up North after work. We were so eager to reach the Seafoam Lodge that we only stopped once for a mocha each at Starbucks. Then we were back on the road and in Mendocino by about 9:25 PM.

We checked into the adorable Seafoam Lodge, Ruggles met some doggy friends who were also staying there, we picked out a few movies to borrow from the office and dropped our stuff in our room. Here's what I wrote about Seafoam:

The Seafoam Lodge gets five-stars from me for the best value stay that I've had EVER. Here's the quick run-down...

Doggie heaven + king-sized bed + mini fridge + sliding glass door onto huge lawn where Ruggles could play + hot tub in a gazebo + muffins & oj delivered every morning + a huge (free) selection of movies, dvds, and games to borrow + quiet (other than us...) + conveniently just 3 miles from downtown Mendocino FOR THREE NIGHTS = $287.50 (third night was free!)

The great experience = PRICELESS!

We headed to the local grocery store that is open until 10 PM (luckily!) to pick out a dinner of sushi for me and a sandwich for Jeff. I can almost guarentee that you will take several trips to the Harvest Market during your stay in Mendocino as there are few other grocery options. Here are my thoughts:

Harvest Market at Mendosa's doesn't have much grocery competition in the area. As far as I know, this is THE place to go for groceries in Mendocino. Some of our best finds here included:

- Bob's Red Wine: actually called that with a picture of Bob on the bottle; so good for $4.50 per bottle!
- a variety of yummy asian seaweed crackers
- Blood orange sparkling juice (like very fancy Martinelli's!) on sale for $2.99
- box of avocado sushi

Then, it was back to the Seafoam for an evening of games, playing with Ruggles, wine, and then sleep. I smiled as I fell asleep at the peaceful Seafoam Lodge not too, too far from home...

Friday morning, we were psyched to wake up to our basket of muffins and oj while our co-workers were all hard at work. My first vacation day of the year was definitely fabulous! On the way to Fort Bragg, we discovered a mini golf course and were the only golfers at 11 AM. I also won a cute stuffed bear at the challenging arcade "claw" game.

Then, we headed to Fort Bragg to do some more exploring. Some of the highlights of our Fort Bragg explorations included an amazing lunch at North Coast Brewing Company, great bargain shopping, and a little coffee date. The waffle fries at North Coast Brewing Company were SO yummy!

Three words: Garlic waffle fries!

I think we were really hungry by the time we came to North Coast Brewing for lunch and the food was so satisfying and delicious!

We started with the four-sampler of beers which were yummy and a great value especially for the pricier beers. Our waitress brought out a laminated placemat with all of the beer logos on it and placed our selections on their images so we knew which we were trying. She also brought us a couple extra complimentary samples near the end of our lunch!

The food was a little pricey for bar food but really hit the spot. I enjoyed a veggie burger with the special waffle fries and doused it in the Mendocino Mustard mustard seed beer mustard on our table. I think I used about 1/2 of the $6 bottle we were provided with... Jeff had the southwest burger with avocado, etc on it and really enjoyed it though he wished he'd also upgraded his fries to the garlic-waffle ones. The regular fries were not nearly as good...

For great food and beer in Fort Bragg, check out North Coast Brewing!

P.S. Beer tours of the brewery (located across the street) are only once per week at noon on Saturday...

Then, it was back to our hotel for a hot tub soak with Ruggles spectating and off to dinner at the AMAZING La Petite Rev. We really loved it and, how could you not, with this meal?!

Dinner at La Petite Rive was definitely one of the top meals of my life. I'm so happy that I'd picked out this restaurant through Yelp before I headed up to Mendocino for the weekend. La Petite Rive was about a mile from our not-as-fancy hotel (the Seafoam Lodge). Each night, they do two seating's at 5:30 PM and 8:30 PM. We stopped by the restaurant at about 5:45 PM on Friday night and were lucky enough to get a spot at that night's 8:30 PM seating.

When we arrived for our dinner date, we immediately noticed that this restaurant was absolutely adorable. The ocean views were awesome and there were about 10 little tables. One waitress took all of the orders and the staff functioned as a great team.

First, we chose yummy beers served in great glasses from the drinks menu while many others consumed wine. Then, the waitress assured us that an entree each would be plenty of food. I chose the sole and Jeff chose the duck dish. Everyone's meal started with a little appetizer served alongside a small serving of amazing wine. Next, we enjoyed our fresh bread and delicious salad with ginger dressing followed by yummy, creamy tomato soup. It was a great experience to know that our neighboring tables were enjoying the same delicious dishes at the same time. Everyone seemed so happy devouring the deliciousness...

By the time for the main course (after our little lime sorbet pallet cleanser), we were pretty full. My fish was good but Jeff's duck was out-of-this-world amazing. We both laughed hysterically as I attacked his duck from across the table. I don't think we've ever laughed so hard and loved a meal so much. The price was right too at just about $100 total for the two of us!

We tried to go back again on Saturday night but they were all booked... we'll be there on our next trip though!

I promise that I rarely write this many 5 star reviews but the Mendocino area is really incredible! Back at the Seafoam Lodge, we enjoyed lots more wine and many, many more laughs....

Saturday morning, we threw the ball for Ruggles lots through our sliding glass door, ate our muffins, drank our oj, and headed off to see the beach and lighthouse. When in Mendo, I would definitely recommend scoping out the lighthouse!

The lighthouse is a great sight to see and the views of the ocean surrounding it are amazing. The parking lot is large and about a very nice 1/2 mile walk from the lighthouse. I like that this parking situation encourages everyone to go for a nice walk! There are also educational trivia questions along the trail for educating everyone about gray whales, etc.

If you walk down in front of the lighthouse on the rocks, you can view lots of cute critters in tide pools. Also, we were the only ones touring the lighthouse keeper's house and it was a neat little historic site to see. They have nice bathrooms too which is always good if you bring your kids along!

Then, we headed to downtown Mendocino for some shopping, snacks, and relaxation.

There's half of our amazing trip and I will post the second half and photos soon! To Be Continued...

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Hate/Love Relationships

I can think of a list of several things/situations that I sometimes love and sometimes hate. This list will be super random but I've actually given it a lot of thought... I'd love to hear if anyone else might have similar things on a similar list or things that would be on their own Hate/Love list. I will start with those that I tend to hate the most and move up towards those that I hate a bit less. Here it goes...

- HANGOVERS: sometimes I wake up swearing that I will never drink again. And then I go through much of the day still vowing that I will never drink again. My head throbs, my stomach hurts, I'm tired, and I can't think straight... However, once I start to feel a little bit better, I decide that, if I can make it through this pain, I can make it through anything. And then, I start to feel strong and slowly like myself again. In order to compensate for the shame I felt earlier for causing my body such pain and being irresponsible, I often work harder than usual and accomplish more than usual. I start to feel proud and capable again. And, sometimes, the pain feels like it was all worth it. Maybe I will have another drink sometime...

- STREET PARKING IN SAN FRANCISCO: street parking in most parts of San Francisco can often be insane. One can drive around in circles for what feels like hours, spend all their money feeding a meter, or try to squeeze into a spot where one's car just doesn't fit... However, when you find a spot it can feel truly amazing. You have beat all odds and succeeded! However, if you are me, you will worry about your car as you're falling asleep. You'll worry that you might have a parking ticket in the morning even if you know you did nothing wrong. Then, you'll walk up to your car in the morning with your fingers crossed that you won't have a ticket. You might have one for an unmarked street cleaning, wheels mis-turned, a curb that did not look red at night, etc. But, if you show up to your car and there is not a ticket, your heart will skip a beat with joy!

- RUNNING: some days running is easy and other days it is so hard. Often times, it seems like a fluke as to when the hard days and when the easy days are... On the tough days, I feel out of shape and incapable. On the easier days, I often feel like I must not be working hard enough. However, I still get runners high sometimes. And other times, I forget that I'm running and just get into the "flow" of moving and placing one foot ahead of the other. So much of running seems mental which I both love and hate...

- WASABI, JALAPENOS, & OTHER SPICY FOODS: these foods can "hurt so good!" Sushi is not the same without wasabi. Soy sauce is not nearly as fabulous of a dip without some wasabi mixed in. I think the excitement factor is part of the pleasure... everytime I have sushi, I scortch my mouth at least once with too much wasabi. But, if I don't, I wasn't trying hard enough to achieve the perfect spiciness. Jalapenos and other insanely spicy foods are the same way... I love the challenge and the excitement though the burn can be a bit painful! P.S. I love hearing from my chef roommate that spicy foods are almost always great for you even if they "hurt" a little...

To Be Continued...

Monday, May 4, 2009


This morning at Starbucks, I met an adorable 26-month-old little boy. He was drinking an organic chocolate milk (in the juice-box type container) and wandering around Starbucks being social. We started talking about the chocolate milk, the cow on the packaging, the milk that comes from cows, his rain boots, etc... And then, he got really excited. He started to enthusiastically tell me about the tractors outside in the parking lot and his face lit up. He pointed outside as if he wanted to take me to see them. I would have loved to go on a tractor tour with him but would have been late for work...

I said goodbye a few times as I walked out the door and we both waved. He came up and pressed his face almost against the glass of the door, waved his hand, and loudly chanted, "bye, bye!" I could hear him when I was a couple feet from the door, then as I approached my car, and, even when I was about 75 feet away, I could still hear him and see him smiling and waving.

He made my morning and day!

Monday, April 27, 2009


Growl. Tail wags for five seconds. Tail stops wagging. Growl. Back hair stands up on end a little. Tail wags reluctantly. Sniffs other doggy butt. Tail wags. Looks hopeful that other doggy might play. Tail stops wagging. Facial expression looks concerned. Runs into the kitchen behind the other doggy with similar hopes to fetch a bone...

When Ruggles met his cousin, Chauncey for the first time, the second time, the third time, the fourth time, and the fifth time, this is what his reaction looked like. Chauncey is my parents' rescue dog who they rescued about three years ago.

So, first, the brief story about Chauncey... when my mom met Chauncey, a sheep-dog/black lab/unknown mix, she knew he was the one. He sported a scarred patch on his shoulder and she found out that not only had he first been abused by his owner, his wound had then been re-opened by the dogs he was being fostered with.

On their long car ride home, Chauncey was very well behaved. He sat still and looked lovingly over at my mom.

However, when he got home, he started to cause a few more problems. At first, my parents would leave him in the house when they went out. They'd close the doors and the windows and leave Chauncey in their comfy kitchen. And then, they'd come home and find Chauncey. He'd be sitting on the front lawn. He was officially an escape artist. Somehow, he'd pry a window open and climb out but would decide to not go far after his escape. I think he knew to appreciate his new home.

As most dogs are, Chauncey was also a "counter-surfer." He ate a whole lot of food off of the counter. Somehow, he'd propel himself into the air and land "surfing" on the counter.

Somehow, my parents decided to call a dog psychologist to make sure that Chauncey was a happy dog. First, over the phone, the dog psychologist told them that "dogs are just suck ups." She said that dogs don't actually love you but that they just pretend to care about you to get what they want. I think we all know that is just NOT true as dogs are loyal, sweet, and even a little needy sometimes... Next, she offered to come and pick up Chauncey and take him to her house a couple hours away for a couple days for "therapy sessions." For the "reasonable" price of about $40 per hour (including for her driving time and the dog's sleeping time), she would make sure he was a happy rescue dog. In the end, they decided not to go this route...

And Chauncey became a perfectly adjusted, albeit shy-towards-other-dogs dog. He'd follow my mom everywhere and our whole family loved him.
You may have already read a bit about Ruggles, my recent (as of last November) rescue boy. So...

Ruggles and Chauncey at first mostly sniffed at each other, growled a little, and seemed fairly uninterested. While Chauncey is about twice as big as Ruggles, Ruggles always seemed to have more confidence.

Their main other interaction was lying on each other's pillows. With their very visible size differences, it was funny to see Chauncey fall off of Ruggles' tiny pillow and Ruggles disappear into Chauncey's much-too-big pillow. And then sometimes they'd trade back to their own pillows. And sometimes they would both run into the kitchen with hopes of a bone. Other times, they'd go on a walk together - separate leashes but the same destination.

And then, all of a sudden, they started to become friends. Where they had sniffed unenthusiastically before, they now seemed more interested in the other's doggy smells. Their tails wagged for longer and faster. They still are not yet the best of friends, but now they'll share a pillow. I think they are making great progress towards becoming happy relatives!

Friday, April 24, 2009

My At-Home Cafe

It's amazing to me how much joy I get out of an espresso beverage. For about $2 (I always bring my registered Starbucks card for free flavor syrup and soy...!) at Starbucks I might order a:

- soy cafe au lait
- americano with sugar free vanilla and steamed soy
- nonfat mocha with two pumps of mocha
- or whatever other concoction I'm in the food for that day

Or, I'll head to a local North Beach coffee shop to order a huge bowl of cafe au lait, chai latte, etc.

So, basically, I know that I love espresso. There is something much more satisfying/pleasurable to me about it than coffee. Don't get me wrong, I love coffee too but just not in the same "special" way.

The natural next step in my espresso exploration was learning to make traditional espresso beverages and design my own in my at-home cafe. I started with the most basic and least expensive of espresso machines. Next, I purchased espresso grounds from the supermarket and Starbucks. I bet that regular grounds would work fine too... I also picked up soy milk and nonfat milk since those are my favorites with espresso. For extra excitement, I also grabbed some mocha powder.

The drink that I usually make at home takes about 1 minute and 30 seconds. For me, this is much more instant gratification than waiting for a not-as-special pot of coffee... I start with about 1/3 inch of espresso in my mug and then add about 1 inch of soy milk. I then warm up the steamer attached to the machine and foam up my espresso and soy concoction. Sometimes I'll put a little mocha powder on top... sometimes I'll re-steam the milk once the foam starts to go away... In any case, I'll thoroughly enjoy my special beverage. I haven't yet named it but I love that I make it in my at-home cafe!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Introducing Ruggles

Since Ruggles is one of the most important boys in my life, I wanted to more formally introduce him. He's the barker and I'm the typer so he unfortunately can't introduce himself without a sound bite...

Right before Thanksgiving 2008, I rescued Ruggles from WonderDog (, an amazing organization in San Francisco. Poor little Ruggles had a very runny nose and was too timid to even walk without being carried. Luckily, Linda at WonderDog had already started nursing him back to health. I was actually volunteering with WonderDog for the day and playing with all the dogs. However, Ruggles and I connected very quickly. When people kept asking if he was up for adoption, I started by saying "maybe," but an hour later was saying, "No, actually, I'm adopting him!" The picture above is of Ruggles and me on the day I met him... I've never fallen in love with something/someone so fast.

Now, he is a happy, healthy, active, hyper boy. He is incredibly affectionate towards me, my friends, children and many other dogs. He loves to fetch a ball, cuddle with me, sleep, and go to the park. The picture above shows him cuddling with his doggy best friend/girlfriend, Lizzie. They wrestle, chase each, other, play, cuddle, and kiss. While Ruggles is about half of Lizzie's size, he is strong and can pull her around the room while they play tug-of-war with a rope!

This is just a little snippet of who Ruggles is and how much he means to me...