2012 vacation with our corgis – Playing Part II


This gallery contains 13 photos.

At Barkwells, Jeter and Cappy played many ways. They chased a ball when we threw it with the Chuckit! Ball Launcher like you already saw from many pictures in my previous blog posts. Jeter played with his ‘Flying Squirrel dog … Continue reading

2012 vacation with our corgis – Cabin

When you plan for your vacation with your dog, finding places with a description of ‘dog-friendly’ is not that difficult. But most of the times the term ‘dog-friendly’ means “we accept your dog but you need to pay an extra fee and your dog should stay in the crate when you’re not in the room”. Your dog needs to be on leash all the time and finding places for walking/exercising your dog around can be challenging – you need to find a dog park nearby which doesn’t require you to buy a yearly membership. We took our corgis to a dog-friendly hotel and B&B for a short period of stay before, but didn’t feel all that comfortable leaving them in the room. That’s why we picked “Barkwells”Β even though we needed to drive 12 plus hours to get there. Calling this place just ‘dog-friendly’ would be an understatement. This place is more like “a resort for dogs where their humans are welcomed.” πŸ™‚ It’s slogan “The dog lovers’ vacation retreat” is so true. I just wish there was a place like that within a 5-6 hour drive from our home. In this blog post, I will tell you about Barkwells and the cabin we stayed in. I don’t have any connection with this place other than we enjoyed our vacation there, twice.

Peppermint Patty’s from outside

At Barkwells, the cabin we stayed in this year was ‘Peppermint Patty’s’. If my memory serves me right, Peppermint Patty was the owner’s second dog. The cabin we stayed in last year was ‘Snicker’s’ and Snicker was the name of their first dog when they started Barkwells.

Peppermint Patty’s (PP) is a bigger cabin than Snicker’s. It has two bedrooms with king beds and a loft with a daybed. Two bathrooms, a living room plus dining room, a fully equipped kitchen, a fireplace, and a bigger porch with rocking chairs and a hot tub. Its yard is big but with a slope – I prefer Snicker’s’ yard. These are some pictures of PP.

From left to right, top to bottom : living room, dining room, first bedroom, second bedroom, ladder to the loft, loft, porch (hot tub, table, and chairs), rocking chairs on the porch, fenced meadow

Jeter and Cappy felt home right away when they went in. They explored here and there.

Jeter is checking out the porch door

Cappy is looking out from the porch

Jeter is testing one of the doggy beds

Cappy likes this bed

After checking everywhere, Jeter and Cappy fell asleep πŸ™‚

Jeter doing peek-a-boo πŸ™‚

There are 6 more cabins at Barkwells. Including PP, six of them are along the 7 acres of fenced meadow and one is separated on the other side of the driveway. Each cabins has its own fenced yard, doggy door to inside of the cabin, and a big covered porch, all for your dogs. Once you checked in, your dog can go everywhere freely πŸ™‚ You don’t need to worry about your dog when you go out to eat or sightseeing. Just cover the sofa and chairs with sheets for the dogs which are provided. Dogs can go out to the fenced yard and play, rest on the sofa or doggy bed -provided- inside, or enjoy the sunlight on the big porch. Everything is for them. Now you start to see why we like this place πŸ™‚

Jeter and Cappy playing in PP’s yard

Jeter sleeping on the chair

Cappy sleeping on the sofa

There are still so many things to tell you but I will stop here for today. In the next blog post, I will show you how happily my corgis ran around the rolling meadow and met their doggy friends. Bye for now!!

– to be continued

2012 vacation with our corgis – On the road

This is a blog post about Jeter’s and Cappy’s vacation. It was a very corgi – centered and relaxing vacation and I want to share our memories with you. Hope you enjoy it πŸ™‚


There are things that change your life a lot and I think getting a dog is one of them. Since we got our corgis, many things in our lives changed including our vacations. In 2009, we already had a great time in Dana Point California before we adopted Jeter. In 2010 there were so many things that happened, we just skipped the vacation. Then in 2011, when we planned our vacation, we didn’t want to leave Jeter and Cappy. So after many internet searches, we decided to go to North Carolina. I read an article about very dog friendly places in NC and an ultimate vacation retreat for dog lovers called “Barkwells.” So last year we went there to celebrate our corgis’ adoption anniversaries and our anniversary. If we didn’t have dogs, we would never think about going to NC for our vacation, especially with more than 12 hours of driving. Yes, dogs surely change your life πŸ™‚

We had a great time at Barkwells last year so we decided to go back again and made a reservation for the end of summer when we hoped it would be cooler weather. After waiting many days, last Sunday, September 2nd, the day we headed to NC finally came. When we were packing our suitcases, Jeter and Cappy sensed something exciting. They came up to the bed and jumped into one of the suitcase πŸ™‚

Barkwells’ check in time is 3 pm and we needed to drive more than 12 hours from Chicago to get there. So we left our house at 2 am. There were still more cars on the road than I expected because of Labor Day. Last year, Jeter got a little bit anxious during the long drive. To help him to stay calm, we brought his crate this year. For him, his crate is a very comfortable and safe place and he loves to be in it. We secured his crate in the back seat and put him in it. Cappy wore her car vest and we used a tether to connect to a seat belt. It was a long long drive but my corgis did a good job.

Travelling corgis : Jeter in his crate and Cappy in the back seat

Driving all night was not an easy thing. I don’t know how many times we asked each other “Are we there yet?” πŸ™‚ We drank cup after cup of coffee. The weather for our drive this year was rainy and foggy, but still better than last year when it rained heavily as we drove through Indiana. One thing different from last year was we didn’t need to stop so often to get gas πŸ™‚ Our Prius V did a great job. Even though it struggled a bit when we drove uphill in the mountains, overall it was a smoother and more comfortable drive. We listened to so many different kinds of songs using Pandora. We stopped several times not for gas but to stretch our legs and the corgis’ legs. Night changed to day and flat scenery changed to hills. After crossing 4 states borders – IN, KY, TN, NC – we finally arrived at our destination around 3:30 pm on Monday, September 3rd. It was about 680 miles from our home.

After this sign, we still needed to drive more than 100 miles to get to our destination

As soon as we finished the check in, the first thing we did was put our corgis in the fenced yard of our cabin. They loved to run around after the long drive πŸ™‚ Then we started to move suitcases and many things to the cabin. The cabin we stayed in this year was ‘Peppermint Patty’s’. It is a bigger cabin than the one we stayed (Snicker’s) in last year. Jeter and Cappy explored the yard, inside of cabin – room by room – and the porch. They looked so comfortable πŸ™‚ After we put things away, we took them to the 7 acres of fenced meadow. Jeter and Cappy ran like the wind. They looked so happy. That’s why we came here. Our happy corgi vacation just started.

Jeter and Cappy running on the meadow. The cabin behind is the one we stayed in – Peppermint Patty’s.

– to be continued

Breaking the long silence :-)

I’m sorry for not posting for this long. I wasn’t feeling well for a few weeks and then at last I started to feel better again, and we went on our planned vacation.

We took our precious corgis with us and had a great time. We stayed 7 nights at a place called ‘Barkwells’ in North Carolina. I’m going to write about our very corgi-centered vacation and of course these blog posts will have many pictures πŸ™‚

Thank you for not forgetting my blog and see you soon!

Milk disaster

What do you think how much damage a half gallon of milk can cause? To me, A LOT. Just thinking about what happened yesterday makes me frown 😦

Yesterday morning, I needed to go get some milk. Since the milk store we buy the milk opens at 10 am, I killed some time at the grocery store buying sweet potatoes and olive oil. Because of the cashier’s fault, I got the sweet potatoes for free πŸ™‚ Then I went to Oberweis and got two half gallons of fat free milk and a 2% chocolate milk – my post run treat – and headed back home. It was a dark and damp morning and the rain was on and off. Not ideal weather to ride a bicycle recklessly near a busy intersection. I saw one guy on a bike crossing the road despite the red light. The car in front of me stopped and I put the brakes on too. That was when I heard the crashing sound from behind. No, it wasn’t a car accident. It was the sound that one of the milk bottles – fat free milk – broke. I still don’t know how that happened. When I put the brakes on, the milk bottle carrier must have slid forward, but how one bottle out of three got broken into pieces like that, I really don’t know. Especially since the milk bottles are in the carrier which hugs the bottles and provides some barrier between them.

I moved the car to the nearby restaurant parking lot quickly and used paper towels to clean the trunk. It was a disaster. Broken glass and milk everywhere. I tried to absorb as much of the milk as fast as possible. It was a cool morning but I was sweating so much. If I was driving the other car, I would only worry about the milk smell. But it was our new hybrid car. The Prius V has the hybrid battery pack under the trunk and the manual warns the owner not to spill liquids. I was worried sick. What if the hybrid battery were damaged? That will cost us a couple of thousand dollars. I called my husband and told him about what happened. He worried about me and tried to calm me down. Maybe I sounded like a crazy woman.

He came back home early and we went to the Toyota dealer to check the car. It was supposed to be my rest day but I spent the morning cleaning the spilled milk in the car like crazy and spent the afternoon at the car dealer shop. After waiting about an hour and a half anxiously, we got the good news that the hybrid battery wasn’t damaged. We needed to wait another hour or so. They sucked out the milk from the mats and carpet as much as they can and shampooed them. We paid about 100 dollars. But the stress I got the whole day was immeasurable. It was raining on our way back home. We couldn’t open the windows and the smell of the shampoo was pretty strong. I was exhausted physically and mentally. I thought I will not drink milk for awhile because of this.

It was not surprising I didn’t feel good this morning. My throat was very sore and swollen and even my tongue was sore. I woke up early to go to the trail but I changed my mind and rested more. After resting two hours, I started to feel better. The weather was too nice to stay at home. So I went to the trail with Cappy. The temperature was not bad but the sun was strong. I brought Jeter’s cooling vest and put it on Cappy. She was running okay for awhile but as the temperature went up, her pace started to slow down.Β It felt hot for me too. So I ended our run at 2 miles and came back.

“It’s hotter than we thought!”

Cappy enjoyed the car ride and cool air in the front seat – usually my dogs sit in the back seat for their safety just like human kids but today I drove the 3 door hatchback car. That’s the only time my corgis sit in the front seat. After we came back home, I went out alone and ran 1.2 miles more. Even though she ran just 2 miles, the strong sun made Cappy tired – later in the afternoon when I took my corgis out, it felt much cooler than the morning. But running made her happy.Β She looked like she was smiling while she was taking her nap πŸ™‚

“How could you do this to me!”


However, unlike Cappy, Jeter was grumpy. When I came back home, he gave me a pouting look. He wasn’t happy about me taking only Cappy. Sorry little buddy, but you will have quality time with me tomorrow -) Taking one corgi at a time is easier for me and good for them since their running style is different. And they can rest and not overdo it.

Overall, it was a much better day than yesterday. No milk disaster and I ran with my corgi. Oh, and I drank milk – the chocolate milk after the run – without being haunted by yesterday’s memory πŸ˜‰

Things are looking up :-)

Yesterday I went back to the radiology office to take a chest X-ray. It was crowded in the waiting room. No wonder, their machine went down all day yesterday. I prepared myself for waiting there quite a long time but to my surprise, they worked pretty fast. Actually I waited a little bit, took two X-rays, and came out in less than 20 minutes! I wondered why they didn’t work like that before. Anyway, spending less time at the radiology office was good πŸ™‚

This morning after I came back from the gym, I got a phone call from my doctor. He said he got the X-ray result and everything looked cleared. I was glad to hear that. And my blood test results came out good too. Yay!! No more effin’ pneumonia!!!!

It was drizzling on and off all day. Even though it didn’t rain as much as many people want, the temperature was so comfortable. My corgis love this cooler weather. They seemed to enjoy the afternoon walk more today. If there was no thunderstorm forecast, I would take them to the trail. The weathermen said the weather will be very beautiful this weekend and Jeter and Cappy will have some good times at the trail with us. Anyway, these days Jeter and Cappy spend lots of time on the window bench. Sometimes together, sometimes they take turns. But the other day, I saw them falling asleep on the bench together for the first time. They looked just so adorable. You can see Jeter’s nose was in the sheer curtain πŸ™‚

I took the sheer curtain away from Jeter’s face and they still didn’t move and kept sleeping.

“This is a very good napping spot…Don’t wake us up… Zzzzzzz”

Today, I walked/ran 3.2 miles on a treadmill at the gym. I ran more and faster but still in a careful way. It felt good and I sweated a lot. Little by little, I’m going to get my fitness back.

Rest day at the doctor’s office

After running two days in a row, I had a rest day from running. But I felt more tired than a running day because every time I go to the doctor’s office, I got exhausted mentally. Even though our family doctor is very kind and nice, I still get nervous. I think the bad experience I had with the previous one – I’d rather call him a quack – has something to do with this. Anyway, today I had a doctor’s appointment and it went pretty well. Dr.C was happy about my progress. Well…I definitely looked better today than the last time he saw me which was when I had pneumonia. Even though I still have a sore throat, he said that I don’t need to worry about it too much. He was glad I started to run again. He prescribed Albuterol to relax and open the air passage to the lungs when I run outside on a very humid day – use it 15 minutes before the exercise. It would prevent my lungs from working too hard and getting sick again. Let’s see how much it will help my running.

Dr.C wanted me to take another chest X-ray to make sure everything was cleared. But when I got to the radiology office, they said their X-ray machine went down. I need to go back there tomorrow. Inconvenience? yes. But I understand things happen. I just have one more thing to do tomorrow πŸ™‚

Sunday family exercise

My husband and I like to go to the trail on the weekend. But yesterday, it was too hot and humid even early in the morning. And I felt quite tired after I came back from the gym on Friday.(I walked/ran 2.2 miles that day.) I think I’m still not strong enough to run two days in a row. I need to remember it will take time to build the endurance back and I shouldn’t rush or try to do too much too soon. Today, the weather was much cooler than yesterday but I still couldn’t get up as early as I wanted. I didn’t feel good and had no energy. So my husband let me sleep more and took Jeter and Cappy out. They went to the nearby park and walked 1.5 mile. When they came back, I felt a little bit better thanks to the extra sleep. It was still early and the temperature was not that bad so we decided to go to the Forest Preserve Bike Trail.

It was a sunny, beautiful morning. There were more people out at the trail. I think many people were inspired by watching the Olympics πŸ™‚ My corgis were so excited for getting extra exercise. After some walking warm up, I started to run with Cappy. Jeter was walking with my husband but he wanted to run too. So I took Jeter’s leash and ran with two corgis. I was happy and so were my corgis πŸ™‚ But they got tired faster. That was understandable because it was their second workout this morning and the temperature went up thanks to the strong sun. I gave them a couple of water breaks but after 2.75 miles, what they wanted to do was rest under the tree. Dragging them in the sun another quarter mile to the car wouldn’t be a good thing. So my husband stayed there with Jeter and Cappy and I went to the car and drove back to them. They were glad to get in the car πŸ™‚ We shared a banana with them and gave them more water. It was another good Sunday family exercise. My mileage for today was 3. These are pictures I took during a water break today.

Jeter looks so happy and handsome in this picture.

Our wonderful Sunday.. More good than bad :-)

After my husband and I had a good walk/run on Saturday, we planned to go out to the Forest Preserve Bike Trail again yesterday. I got up a little bit late but the weather was still good enough to run outside. Anyway it was still earlier than the time we went to the trail on Saturday πŸ™‚ Because of what happened to Jeter on Saturday, we were going to leave him at home and only take Cappy. But when I told Jeter to go into his crate, he looked at me so sadly with those begging eyes as if saying “You can’t leave me here alone!! My leg is okay! Take me with you!! Pleeeeeeease!!!!” How could I say no to that face. And his left front leg seemed to be okay. I talked to my husband about him and we decided to take him too. But we limited his exercise only to walking and in case he showed any problem, we would cut the exercise and come back home.

Jeter and Cappy were very happy corgis at the trail. Jeter walked with my husband so nicely and didn’t have any problem πŸ™‚ I walked/ran with Cappy. Boy, she wanted to run like the wind! Since I just got back to running, I tried hard not to run too fast but thanks to her, my pace was much faster than Saturday. Thankfully, my legs endured quite well πŸ™‚ Getting injured is the last thing I want. We did 3 miles and it was a very good family exercise. As usual, Jeter and Cappy got a lot of compliments. I wondered how many people at the trail knew my corgis are the same breed with the Queen’s dogs who appeared in the London Olympic’s opening ceremony πŸ™‚

“We are so happy!!!”

“Whew.. it’s getting hot!”

When we came back home, my corgis went into resting mode right away. We let them rest and went out for brunch. Yesterday, we wanted to go to the restaurant we never been before so our pick was “Country Kitchen” in Highland Park. There is a list of good brunch places by Chicago magazine which my husband found and printed. The Country Kitchen was one of many restaurant on that list. But it was not worth the drive. Okay price, meh food. I ordered the french toast and it was insipid. Pancakes and sausage links for my husband was blah. Our waitress was kind of indifferent. There was nothing special about that restaurant. But there seemed to be lots of regulars especially elders. Maybe we ordered the wrong things but anyway, we will not make a special trip to go there again.

But our day wrapped up with a great dinner and that made us forget our not that great brunch. My husband cooked Penne Primavera based on Master Chef Joe Bastianich’s recipes from Runner’s World(October 2010). Chef Joe – the son of Lidia (Lidia’s Italy) is a runner too. Since we read that article, we wanted to try his recipes. Yesterday my husband made Chef Joe’s Pomodoro sauce then cooked the beautiful, healthy pasta using lots of fresh veggies and Racconto 8 whole grain Penne Rigate. It was so delicious!!! One of the best pastas I’ve ever had πŸ™‚

Super YUM!!!!

If you want, you can find Chef Joe’s recipes here HERE.

Today was a rest day from running for me. I played with my corgis this morning and once again my patient boy Jeter cooperated with me and I took this goofy picture πŸ˜‰

That’s it for today. Have a good night!!