Thursday, July 26, 2012

(updated with pictures) 2nd Annual Friends & Dogs vaca - Bear Lake

Starting last year my hiking group decided that we need to do a vacation with the dogs so Mindy planned Moab, we had so much fun that we thought we should do it yearly. We're trying to rotate planning since it takes so much work to find a dog friendly place to stay and dog friendly activities to do so this year I decided to plan.

The rental lady was a complete nightmare to deal with, so unbelievable flakey it wasn't even funny. Just know that if you ever want to stay at Bear Lake don't go through Bear Lake View Properties to book, you'll regret it.
After all the drama of planning though, we stayed here. It was really nice and the headache of dealing with the rental lady diminished a little when we stepped in the door.

This was the first time John and I have traveled with all 3 dogs and with 3 other dogs coming I was a little nervous about it, it would be a test to see if all the training we did with Winston paid off. All went swimmingly (besides the fact that Winston was scared of the long, carpeted hallway that our bedroom was located down. Why? Who really knows), at the end of the trip I even let Winston play with another dog in our group, a very stable dog, but still this is an accomplishment.

We got to the house at noon Friday and after everyone picked rooms and made lunch while we waited for the torrential down pour to pass, we headed off to our first adventure of the trip.
Bloomington Lake is located about an hour outside of Garden city in Idaho and there is the tiniest of hikes up to it. The scenery is just beautiful and it was the nicest afternoon.

There were lots of little lakes up to Bloomington Lake and when we came to the first one Makoa ran ahead to it and then jumped right in to swim. On returning back to shore he got stuck on a log and it was so funny trying to watch him get over it.

I don't think Winston liked how cold the water was and wouldn't really swim. This is about how far our he'd go.

Friday evening holds a funny story. We were all the basement with the dogs playing pool and the wind upstairs was howling through the open windows banging the blinds so we kept thinking someone was in the house. Finally a door slammed shut and everyone, pool cues in hand and dogs following heels, headed upstairs to investigate. Once we determined that the wind had just blown a bedroom door shut we went back downstairs and guess who was sleeping peacefully on his bed not caring that we might have all been murdered. My [broken] guard dog, Winston. Everyone was in fits of laughter and he finally woke up to see what all the commotion was about.

Saturday John and I woke up early to get breakfast ready and I enjoyed the beautiful view we had of the lake.

After a hearty breakfast of crepes and fruit we headed to the boat rental for some fun on the lake. This was a total blast and I don't think we ever stopped laughing.

We pulled back into the dock just when it started to sprinkle, too bad John had lost his truck key and the rental house key was in his truck.
Mindy drove me back to the house where we broke in through a window and I grabbed my set of keys to go save John. It could have been a lot worse, no lock smith's or the rental lady had to be called and I'm grateful for that.

We did try to make it to Minnetonka Cave that afternoon, but when we drove there we discovered that all the tours were sold out for the day. It started to pour again on the way back home so the poor dogs had to stay indoors instead of heading out for a swim in the lake. Instead we had dinner, got a famous raspberry shake and hung out in the hallway to see if we could get Winston to get over his crazy fear.
It sure was a sight to see, 5 1/2 ( the 1/2 being Winston) dogs and 4 - 7 people (depending on who got bored with either sitting in the hall or came back to the hall) in that long narrow hallway. We threw toys and acted like fools trying to get Winston to come down. He came about halfway, but when it was time for bed he still had to be dragged down it.

Sunday we decided to do the activities that we couldn't do Saturday afternoon. After breakfast, cleaning up and checking out we head back to Minnetonka Cave and actually made it in this time. John and I had been there before, but it was still fun hanging out with our friends and laughing around every turn.

After the cave we decided that it was still too early to head home so we tried to find a spot on the lake that dogs could swim. Easier said that done since most places have big signs that say "NO DOGS ALLOWED!!!". We did stumble upon a private beach on the north side of Bear Lake in Idaho, Bear Lake Hot Springs, that let us play with our dogs as long as we kept them on leash on the beach and they didn't bother anyone in the water.
John took out Winston and I took out Enna & Makoa. I had to stay closer to shore since Enna is so little, but she did swim with me for a little while. Since she looks pissed most of the time I took her back to the truck and played with Makoa a little longer.
He looked tired after a while and I wanted to see how far out Winston could go and that meant it was too deep for Makoa so he went back to the truck too.
Winston did great and in the parts that were actually deep enough, he would swim. I'm hoping that that means that next time at the lake he won't need much persuasion to swim. I would have taken tons of pictures, but cameras and water don't mix well and I had my hands full with two little and then one big dog. 

We also hit up a burger place at the Inn at Snow Meadow in Garden City before heading out. Go there if you go to Bear Lake, it'll be the best burger you had in a really long time.
We made it home around 8:30 at night and no one really wanted to go. It was one of the best vacations I've been on in a long time.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

We be grillin'

John and I had a really nice weekend and to top it off we decided to grill some pizzas for dinner Sunday night.

I made my own sauce just because I can. Since I hardly ever measure when cooking I can just tell you what I used and you can figure out the measurements. 14oz diced tomatoes blended, but still chunky, oregano, basil, parsley, garlic, onion powder, salt, pepper and sugar. Simmered over low heat.

This pizza crust is nice because it doesn't have to rise, but still tasty.

  • 1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar 
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 1/2 cups flour (like all my recipes I use 1/2 white and 1/2 whole wheat)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese 
  • 2 teaspoons garlic salt
  • 2 teaspoons Italian spices
In a medium bowl, dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes. Stir in flour, salt, oil and the rest of the ingredients. Beat until smooth. Let rest for 5 minutes. 
Knead onto a floured surface and divide into 4 sections. Roll and pat out each section REALLY thin. Brush one side with with olive oil and place oiled side directly on grill, cook 3 - 5 minutes, once cooked it shouldn't stick to the grill. Pull off grill and brush uncooked side with olive oil. Top cooked side with a light amount of sauce (too much and it'll be soggy) and other toppings. 
Place back onto grill for another 3 minutes, checking bottoms for burning.  


Friday, July 13, 2012

Winston's dog house

We knew that since Winston was going to be outdoors while we weren't home he needed a dog house so John started saving up scraps from work to make one. It was going to be a long process to build and John wasn't looking forward to it so when he co-worker said that he had a big dog house that he didn't need anymore we jumped on it.

The dog house is big enough, but the door is lab sized so John will have to cut it bigger, but it is fully insulated and has a heat lamp in it for the winter.
While the other dogs thought it was pretty awesome and jumped in and out of it, Winston wasn't sure and stood by it crying. The wuss.

This isn't where the dog house is going to live, but we still have work to do on the side of the house before it can move. Hopefully Winston actually uses it.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

June's block of the month

The cutting was really easy with the flying geese (the triangle pieces) ruler that my mom bought me but I had to unpick the sewing so many times I lost count. Finally I just unpicked a whole row, moved some pieces around and sewed it back together, it finally went together smoothly. More Daria was watched while doing so.