5 Memorial Day Weekend Plans in Miami

Memorial Day 2015Memorial Day weekend is a time to be grateful for our troops’ sacrifices; we can’t think of a better way to commemorate their sacrifices than time spent with family and friends.  Have you, like many Miamians, procrastinated with planning your Memorial Day weekend getaways? We’re happy to share five local, alternative, and family-friendly outings that will bring you closer to friends and family.

  1. Chocolate rules in our family- and there is nothing better than Cao Chocolate’s freshly-made artisanal chocolates. So, join us at Cao Chocolates’ Friday Night Social today, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m.! Owners Cao Trillos and Anelith Ortega welcome all chocolate lovers every month to enjoy their divine chocolate, cheeses, and wine in this family-friendly event. Parking in the back. Address: 9800 SW 77 Ave. Miami, FL 33156
  1. SwingLAB Wynwood at Lab Miami. Swing’s the thing in the heart of Wynwood on Saturday, May 23, from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. There will be a one hour introduction to swing lesson, and then current and vintage music from DJ Babs, and three hours of dancing for $15. Parking, alas, is not free, but is available for $1.50 an hour.Address: 400 NW 26 St. Miami, FL 33127
  1. The Play’s the Thing! Catch “The Book Club” at the Actor’s Playhouse! This play is close to our hearts as book people. Members of a book club let a documentary filmmaker record their meetings, which completely changes their dynamic… especially when a controversial new member joins. One critic compared this play to “Lord of the Flies with wine and dip.” We’re sold! The play runs through June 7, 2015. Address: 280 Miracle Mile Coral Gables, FL 33134
  1. Flying Trapeze School! You’re welcome. No, really- this actually exists within driving distance of most of you! Professional flying trapeze artists will help you feel free while you fly on the trapeze- upper body strength not required, and children as young as 6 can join. All classes must be reserved beforehand. Call 786.239.8775 to reserve your space. You can pay with your credit card over the phone, PayPal, or cash. Address: Bayfront Park 301 N. Biscayne Blvd. Miami, FL 33132
  1. Do you already have plans for the weekend, but nothing planned for Monday? Take a Coral Gables Waterway Canal Tour! The tour heads out from Riviera Drive down to the Bay. Catch wildlife (manatees, egrets, and alligators, oh my!), natural landscape, and historic architecture from water level. This historic canal was built by George Merrick, who would row guests from the Biltmore Hotel down to Tahiti Beach. It’s an easy paddle for adults and children 9 and up; this is not recommended for children under 5 years of age. Remember to take water, sunblock, a hat, and sun glasses. Close-toed shoes are required. The tour lasts from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., so keep that in mind when deciding on whether to take your little ones or not! Reserve your spot on Miamiecoadventures.com, or call 305.365.3018. The adventure will run you $35.00. Address: 3401 SW 72 Avenue Miami, FL 33155

We hope you enjoy your weekend!

5 Last-Minute, Local Pet Valentine’s Day Gifts!

pets miami sitting dog cat loveres

Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, and we know many of you are scrambling for a last-minute pet Valentine’s Day gift for your loved ones, or worse… completely forgot that your dogs and cats love getting gifts, too! No worry- we have five wonderful, LOCAL gift options for the perfect Valentine’s Day gifts for the furry kids and humans in your life. We love all of these local, small businesses dearly and regularly refer our beloved clients to them for professional pet services, fine food, and pet gifts (and, shameless self-promotion since we’re including ourselves- we think we’re quality, as well!). We think your pets will be very pleased with these, so without further ado, your five local go-to’s for a great Miami Valentine’s Day!

1. A Day at the Spa with My Dog

Is your sweetheart wild about her dog? Give her pup a spa day with a MyDog gift certificate! MyDog is based in Pinecrest and is well-known for their wonderful staff and relaxing atmosphere. Your dog’s grooming experience begins the moment he walks in, so there is no waiting. Each dog is personally fluff dried by their groomer, and given lavish hugs, love, and treats (with parent approval). Our favorite parts? The delicious blueberry facial, which leaves your dog smelling divine, and the beautiful staff. They make pups and parents feel welcome with their hospitality and attention to service! Finally, they offer a pick-up service within a certain area free of charge. Call today: 305.298.5538

2. Cao Chocolates-this one’s for the pet parents!

We cannot recommend Cao Chocolates enough. It is our family’s favorite place for chocolate in Miami- heck, the whole of the United States! This place is a wonderland for humans. Owners Cao and Anelith craft their artisanal chocolate with love daily, creating new combinations to please all palates. Their cacao confections (fair trade, from Venezuela) are made in small batches to order and can be hand-delivered to your beloved. Our favorite are the passion fruit chocolate bonbon and the spiced, salted caramel bonbon. Call today:305.603.9747

3. Training with Applause Your Paws!

A fun Valentine’s Day gift to show your pups some love, buy them fun classes at Applause Your Paws! We are thrilled with Applause Your Paws’ service. Owner Dee recently opened her indoor dog training facility after years of success with positive dog training, and it’s a great place for a pup to be! The center is ann 8,000 square foot dog-training facility right by Tropical Park, perfect for agility training, obedience classes (private or group), play dates, board and train, and more! They always have something new and interesting happening on the weekend, from dog play dates to specialized classes for specific breeds, all with positive reinforcement techniques. We highly recommend them! Call: (786) 529-7833

4. Natural K9’s Delicious Offerings

Located Delicious baked treats are the quickest way to your pet’s heart, especially from Natural K9 Supplies. They are dedicated to high quality, natural ingredients in their dog, cat, and bird food, and sell everything from food, to toys, treats, supplements and biking accessories. We think the DoggyRide Original Dog Bike Trailer is a great gift for active pet parents who want to take their pups along for their bike rides. Best of all, well-behaved dogs are allowed in the store, so take them along to choose their own Valentine’s Day gift!Call toll-free: 1-877-284-0350

And as of this writing, they are offering a BOGO deal for Zuke’s Genuine Jerky Treats. Snap them up for your pups!

5. Gift Certificate from Equipaws Pet Services (a gift for pets and their parents!)

Give your dog the gift of exercise this Valentine’s Day! We offer gift certificates for all of our services. Dog walking is especially popular because so many of our clients can’t make it home midday to let their waiting dogs out. Dogs love us because it’s fun company in the middle of an otherwise boring day. They get to sniff and explore, relieve themselves (you know how uncomfortable holding it for hours is- imagine your poor dog!), and they get snuggles and a pet-approved treat! You can also buy a gift certificate for cat sitting, pet sitting, and our overnight stay services. Call us today to purchase the gift certificate: 305.794.3733.
We hope this helps! Let us know how you spend your Valentine’s Day, below!
pet gifts Valentine's Day

Thanks to Miami Small Businesses!

We had a wonderful time at our Howliday Party at West Elm Dadeland this weekend! Our doggie clients had a chance to meet their pet sitters at this dog-friendly event to raise funds for Paws 4 You Rescue, but they also got to meet other local, dog-related small businesses. These local businesses were a huge part of the gathering’s success. We’d like to tell you a little bit about these Miami based, pet-centric companies, and please be sure to visit their websites to learn more about them!

Miami FLFirst, we must thank West Elm Dadeland for hosting our holiday party and fundraiser for Paws 4 You this Sunday! West Elm has been incredibly generous with dog rescue organizations this year, and with the community in general.Their doors are always open to working with local artists, vendors, and organizations to create a sense of community, and their furniture and home decor is beautiful, too (we always want to buy everything, but especially their dog and cat-themed decorations- so cute!!!). Dogs are always welcome at West Elm, too! Remember to pass by with your pooch for a Santa Paws photo, delicious treats for humans and pups, shopping with Fuji & Friends, dog adoptions, arts and crafts, and more!

Our friends from Cao Chocolates donated a little something sweet for our (human) goody bags for the Holiday Party and also gifted a tray of delicious brownies as they couldn’t be there with us.

artisanal chocolate Miami FL Pinecrest

Cao Chocolates is our favorite place to buy local, artisanal chocolate truffles and fine chocolates of amazing quality. If you need a special gift for your friends, family, business, or yourself- make sure you choose Cao. Visit Caochocolates.com for information on their location (right here in Pinecrest!) and how to order for the holidays. Make sure to pass by their cozy store to meet Cao and Anelith- they are wonderful, welcoming people happy to talk about their passion- chocolate!

t shirts
Fuji and Friends Apparel Co., Miami’s coolest dog-themed vintage apparel company, not only co-hosted our Howliday Party benefiting Paws 4 You Rescue with us… they also be sold their beautiful shirts!

The Equipaws pack loves the design and the fact that they donate a portion of their proceeds to benefit Paws 4 You and K9 Field Kits Working Dog Fund. Visit their website for more info: http://www.fujiandfriends.com/, and like their Facebook page at Fuji and Friends!

R & R bake shop Miami FLWe’re happy to share that A Little R & R Bakery added their sweet touch to the party, including goodies like:

*Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies with a twist.
*Cloud Cookies– a Saint Louis speciality! Traditionally called Gooey Butter Cookies, these are cake-like cookies that have a surprisingly light and airy texture.
*Reddies– red velvet cupcakes have received a makeover into a bright red brownie with a cream cheese wave running through the center.
*Almond Blondie-Bows– almond flavored blondies with rainbow sprinkles (usually a crowd favorite!)
*Cookies ‘n Hold the Creams– dairy free Oreo cookies that are light and airy
*Vegan Brownies– dark chocolate vegan brownies made with only 8 ingredients!
*Vanilla Bean Ice Cream– a perfect complement to your baked treats! (don’t worry, calories don’t count on Sunday!).

They will also had peanut-butter pumpkin dog treats available for the furry best friends!

We love their story, as told by owner Lauren Redondo:

“The company is run by both myself and my husband, Marcos. I have been baking since I was a young girl– taught by my mother and grandmothers. My maternal grandmother was the one who taught me the precise science behind baking, while my paternal grandmother was the one who taught me that to cook is to show someone how much you love them.

I began wanting to own my own bakery midway through high school, but it wasn’t until after I married my husband this June that we really decided to begin the bakery. Since I am originally from Saint Louis, many of our recipes have a midwestern origin which we believe is a niche that can be filled in Miami. Marcos is my sous-chef, head-sampler, and packaging professional. He is also currently organizing the financial aspect of our small company.

Some of our favorite ingredients to work with are butter, brown sugar…and butter. But we also have dairy free, sugar free, and vegan items for those who have special dietary needs.”

Dog leashes MiamiWagletWorks Adventure Dog Gear: We were so happy to have Barb bring her hands-free dog gear to the holiday party. She is such a great support to the local rescue community and has an innovative hands-free complete system that helps dog parents spend time with their pooches without stress. The WagletWorks system includes a sturdy and cool leash, poo bags, water bottle holder, water bowl, personal tote, and more. Check out their website and let us know what you think!

Miami FL totes gift bagsThe Sheep Sac joined us this Sunday! They create custom, reusable gift bags for all occasions. We love the product, as we strive to be “green” and responsible in everything we do. Their totes are beautiful and we love that you can choose the theme. Get your holiday reusable totes now! Visit the Sheep Sac’s Facebook page for orders.