Sunday, August 31, 2008

Mike Interview

So I mentioned a while back that I would interview local Pacific City people and a few guests here and there. Who better to start this off than my master Mike?

Mike is the innkeeper at The Craftsman Bed and Breakfast, my home. He moved to Pacific City in 2005. He and his wife, Laura, my other master, purchased the house in 2000 while on their first wedding anniversary. We all still lived in Lake Oswego, Oregon and at first just came to Pacific City on the weekends. They started remodeling the house in 2003. It took the contractor one year and it took Mike and Laura one year to do all the finish work. I’m glad I didn’t have to live at the house during the remodel. We all liked our house in Lake Oswego. It was on ½ acre lot and I had a lot of room to run around. Mike worked in the yard at least 1 hour a day and 4 hours on the weekends. I enjoyed watching him mow, weed, water and care for all the fruit trees and roses. While we were working on the house in Pacific City, Mike had to do all that work during the week.

What is the best program on television?
Law and Order.
What book would you recommend to your friends?
Hop on Pop.
What hobbies or sports do you enjoy most?
I like to play golf when I can, a couple times a year and my goal is to beat my dad who plays several times a week. He is in his 70’s so hopefully I can do it soon. I came close last year but got psyched out on the last hole and gave up a 2-stroke lead. I also ride my Ducati Monster on all the Oregon Coast roads.  Baseball and football on TV.
Food, wet or dry?
I like a lot of different kinds of food, nothing Asian though.
If you could have anything you wanted for dinner, what would be on the menu?
Italian, but Mexican works as well.
What do you want to be doing ten years from now?
I would like to still be doing my dream job of an innkeeper.
Which celebrity would you most like to meet in person?
Vince Vaughn.
What is the greatest problem in the world?
What is one of the most creative things you’ve ever done?
Restored the house that is now The Craftsman B&B.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever received?
Don’t own a boat. Have friends who own boats.
If you could go anywhere on earth for a two-week vacation, where would you go?
It’s not Europe, the Middle East or Asia; it’s all of them.
What is your dream car or vehicle if price didn't matter?
As of this moment Aston Martin DB9.  A vintage Bronco would be nice too.
Have you met anyone famous?
Paul Newman, I used the urinal next to Steve Martin in a restaurant in Boston.
What is something you can't help but spend money on?
Stuff for The Craftsman B&B
What is your worst habit?
It used to be tobacco, now, I guess Dr. Pepper.
Do you have any phobias?
Water and heights, only when my brothers or sisters are around, I’m the youngest of five and tormented throughout my childhood, oh, and sleeper sofas too.
What is your favorite day of the week?
Pay day.
What website do you never go a single day without viewing?
If you were given the day off from all of your everyday responsibilities, how would you spend it?
Golf or Motorcycle ride.
Who was your first celebrity crush?
Meg Ryan.
What is your favorite type of flower?
Square roses.
What does “likes to take long walks on the beach” mean to you?
A person who is not creative enough to come up with an original description of themselves.
If you could have a $10,000 shopping spree to one store, which store would it be and how long would it take you to spend the $10,000?
MotoCorsa and about 3 seconds.
What place in the US would you most like to visit?
Food, architecture, Cubs, Bueller.
Coke or Pepsi?
Dr. Pepper
Is your calendar always on the correct month?
No, shop calendar doesn’t change through the summer because I’m not in it so much. Office calendar is usually a few days into the month before it gets changed.
What is one of the silliest things you’ve ever done?
I fell out of a golf cart at full speed. I got a grass stain from my ankle to my wrist as I slid down the fairway.
Desk: messy or organized?
I’d like to think it’s organized, just full of clutter.
How late is late?
5 minutes, if later that that, call. Everyone has cell phones, make the call.
What talent would we be surprised to hear you have?
I can throw a mean knuckle ball.
Who would you want to play you in the movie about your life?
Andrew McCarthy.
What is your all time favorite joke?
This guy walks into a bar with a dog. The bartender says “you can’t have a dog in here.” The guy says, “This dog can talk.” The dog jumps on the stool and asks the bartender “can I have a bowl of water?” The bartender is amazed. He says, “my buddy owns a bar down the street, can your dog go in and order a drink?” The guy says, “sure give him some money and he’ll do it.” The bartender puts a $20 bill in the dogs collar and the dog leaves the bar. The bartender waits 5 minutes and calls his friend. No sighting of the dog. The guy goes outside to find his dog and it’s humping a poodle. The guy says, “You’ve never run off like that before.” The dog says, “I’ve never had twenty bucks before.”
Elementary school—bully or bullied?
A little of both.
Ever broken a body part?
Yes, Ribs as an accident and 3 surgeries when the doctor did it with a saw, both feet and jaw.
Iced Cubes or Crushed Ice?
Small cubes.
Do you believe in Big Foot?
I do live the North West, so yes!
Favorite costume you’ve ever worn?
The hand-me-down lamb costume. We all wore it, several years in a row. I have won the Witches Choice award twice at an annual party we go to.  Not as a lamb.
What scared you as a kid?
These motorcycle trails we used to ride our bikes on, “the tip-ups.”
Do you have any advice for a 5-year-old child?
Don’t give your candy to your dad.
What is one thing about you that you have not shared yet, that others would find interesting?
I retired when I was 42. I set a lofty goal and achieved it. You can too, do what you want to do in life and you will be happy.

Who will I interview next.  Keep checking the blog to find out.  If you would like me to interview you, send me an e-mail at

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Berkeley, A Special Baby-moon Package

Our next package is still about bubbles, but this one is non-alcoholic, we call it:  Berkeley, A Special Baby-moon Package.  This includes a bottle of our Bin #06, Martinelli Sparkling Cider, 2 Keepsake Craftsman B&B flutes and a box of Harry & David Truffles.  Because having a baby is expensive, we priced this package low at just $20.00.

Baby-moons are a growing trend in travel and a perfect pairing for The Craftsman B&B.  Like most B&B's we are all about pampering and who needs pampering most than an expecting mother.  All the baby-moon's we have had at the B&B, the couple has chosen our Mackintosh Room.  It has a large, deep soaking tub, a perfect way for a mom-to-be to relax.  The bubbles add a bit of fun before the big event.  As most B&B's don't allow children under 18, this is a good way to experience just how fantastic a B&B is before 18 years of Motel 6 and other kid-friendly hotels.

Walk along the Oregon Coast, here in Pacific City, while there is just two sets of footprints and dip your toes in the ocean to relive those swollen feet.  We can also arrange a massage by one of our local LMT's.  So if your an expecting parent and would like to get away together before the sleepless nights a newborn will bring, we welcome you to visit us.  We have had one last minute cancellation, due to a delivery, so don't cut it too close.  That tidbit was for those future dad's out there.  The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that you book your trip during the second trimester of pregnancy, because that is the time when travel is said to be safest.

We also know not every drinks alcohol, so this package is perfect for those looking for a non-alcoholic option.

So Berkley, why is this radical college town a name of a package?  Two people come to mind when thinking of the buildings that are in town and houses over the hills of this East Bay town; Bernard Maybeck and Julia Morgan.

Maybeck works incorporated features considered radical at the time, remember, Berkley.  His use of natural materials including shingles, rough redwood interiors, and huge hand-wrought fireplaces were not common in the day but have become classic elements of the Arts and Crafts movement.  He had many public commissions, but his masterpiece was the First Church of Christ, Scientist.  It has Gothic influences, brilliant color, and all interior furnishings designed by the architect, like other masters of the period.  Can you remember from previous blogs?  Another architect with a building that is a National Historic Monument.  Maybeck is buried in the  Mountain View Cemetery in Oakland.  Mike lived in a house on Moraga Drive in Piedmont, California that backed up to the cemetery, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, ever heard of Central Park?  Mike make a daily walk in the cemetery before work.  Ask him why he has a mustache.

Julia Morgan also has a lot of history in Berkley.  Unfortunately, not all her buildings remain or are taken care of as well as Maybeck's.  The one building that gets the attention it deserves is her National Historic Monument Hearst Castle in San Simeon, California.  You know that crazy house built by William Randolph Hearst, always a work in progress and never completed.  Mike has visited this house many times.  For an incomplete work, it's pretty fantastic.  Back on track, Julia met Maybeck while attending Cal Berkley, he encouraged her to attend École des Beaux-Arts, she was the first woman to graduate.  The rebuilding after the quake of 1906 in San Francisco was how she made her career.  Having Hearst as a patron also helped, as she designed many buildings for the family, their business and the University of California, Berkley.  Click here and scroll to the private residence section to see her houses.  She too is buried in Mountain View Cemetery.

Most humans only have one baby at a time and I understand it's not an easy process, so I won't brag that I come from a litter of 8.  Good thing for my parent's, I was out of the house at 10 weeks.  I still see them though.  I don't get along to well with my dad, last time I stayed overnight, we both ended up at the Vet's office.  My mom just thinks I'm strange.  Just like your newborn, it will be strange then become adorable.  Visit me and see for yourself, am I strange or just adorable?

Friday, August 29, 2008

Taliesin, A Great Birthday Package

The last of the sparkling wine packages is: Taliesin, A Great Birthday Package.  We provide a bottle of our Bin #03 Freixenet Cordon Negro Brut, 2 Keepsake Craftsman B&B flutes and a box of Harry & David Truffles for just $25.00.  That's cheap, I mean inexpensive.  Freixenet is a Spanish bubble so do you remember what that is called?  Cava, baby!  It comes in a bottle that is Mike's favorite color, matte black.  Here is a picture of Mike on his matte black Ducati Monster.

So what or where is Taliesin?  Taliesin was the summer home and studio of Frank Lloyd Wright in Spring Green, Wisconsin and is a National Historical Monument.  He moved there after leaving Oak Park and his first wife for the wife of a client.  A great architect, not a great husband.  The area was originally settled by his mothers family, Welsh immigrants and Taliesin, a name of a Welsh bard, means "shining brow" and he positioned the home on a favorite brow of his childhood.  Wright experimented with Organic architecture by using local stone to mimic sandbars in a river.  Wright and his mistress moved into the house in 1911.

This is where the story of Taliesin gets a little dark.  While Wright was away in Chicago working on the Midway Gardens, one of his staff set fire to the living quarters and murdered seven people with an axe.  The dead included Wright's mistress and her two children.  The murderer died in jail weeks later.

Wright rebuilt the living quarters and renamed it Taliesin II.  Again, another fire.  This one caused by a telephone line that may have been struck by lightning during a storm.  It was rebuilt as Taliesin III.  Wright continued living at the house and acquiring land to grow the estate to nearly 600 acres.  He was always making changes to the house and used his students/ apprentices in his fellowship and other invited artists to do the work.

Taliesin West was the winter home and school for Frank Lloyd Wright and another National Historic Monument.  It was built entirely by students of The Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture, which still hold classes here.  Mike visited the site a long time ago while in Arizona visiting his grandparents.  Located in what used to be in the middle of nowhere, Scottsdale AZ.  The building is made entirely of stone found on the site.  The canvas roofs provide natural light to the building.  Low linear roof lines provide the buildings to blend in to the natural landscape.  Wright designs morphed from linear prairie school style to more futuristic in the Gammage Auditorium at ASU Tempe, one of Wright's last public commissions.  Wright lost the plans originally for a opera house in Baghdad, Iraq to Grady Gammage, president of ASU in a card game.  Another out of this world design is the Marin County Civic Center.

In 1940, Wright along with his third wife formed the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation.  After his death in 1959, the Foundation took over Taliesin and Taliesin West.

OK, that was a lot of history to describe a wine package, but you can see how much thought we at The Craftsman B&B put into a name.  Just think how much thought we have put in to making your stay relaxing and enjoyable.  I am here to make your visit to Pacific City a historic one, oh and the innkeeper does his share too.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Winema Beach

Shh, it's a secret beach.  Located south of Pacific City and north of Neskowin is another place I'd like to tell you about.  I'll keep the exact location and how to access a secret, you'll have to visit me at The Craftsman B&B to get directions.  This is a great out of the way spot Mike and I visited the other day.  Mike has seen it on Google Maps but didn't know how to get there, so after the guests check out, we went exploring.

About 1/4 of a mile north of the access there is a rock stack, just like Haystack Rock in Pacific City and Proposal Rock in Neskowin.  It's tiny and easily accessible.  We stopped for a rest in the shade.  The beach didn't have much hard sand and I don't like to walk near the water so we were in the soft sand most of the way.

We kept walking North as it was such a great day.  Up on the cliff we saw our friend John's house.  He has a dog named Oscar, a St. Bernard.  I haven't met him yet, maybe some day I'll go over and play.  That's the house on the hill in this photo.  Look at all the drift wood that has collected.  A beach combers paradise.
Just a little farther up the beach we found this totem.  Say hello to my little friend.  When I say my friend, I made it mine, if you know what I mean, I am a male dog BTW.
We walked up the the bar of the Nestucca River. This is a dangerous spot. It looks like it's no big deal but boats and lives are lost here every year. Hanging out at the end of the sand spit dividing the ocean and bay are seals, on the left of the picture, they're taking a rest from munching on the fall Chinook salmon coming into the bay. Looks nice and calm right?

Well Mike turned 90º to the North and this is what it looked like. Remember, this was a very calm day.

You can see Haystack Rock, Cape Kiawanda and in the distance Cape Lookout.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Lions, Tigers and What??

Bears!  Humans love to look at bears.  They visit the zoo and watch them for hours.  Bears in the wild are harder to find.  I heard an Alaska saying, that if are walking in the woods, an eagle will see you, a deer will hear you and a bear will smell you.  As a Weimaraner, I have a keen sense of smell too.  I have seen deer in the neighborhood.  I have seen eagles fly over the house, but I haven't seen a bear.  I have heard they are around, guest have seen them on hikes in the area.  I want to tell you about a friend and the bear she encountered.

Deana, a friend we met though our friends the Inkens, has been coming to Pacific City for a long time.  She is married to a great sportsman, Chad.  He hunts and fishes with Derek Inkins all the time.  Deana is usually hanging around the house with the non sportsman types.  A few years ago, Chad and Deana purchased some land just outside of Pacific City.  They plan, one day to build a house.  They are young and also planned to start a family so they are saving their money for their beach house.

Deana and Chad had a baby a few months ago, so the family has been started.  This time of year is bow hunting season and she went off to her land to see what she would find.  Well, she got a bear!  I know if I saw a bear I would turn and run away.  I'm sure I'd be a tasty meal.  Deana stayed put and got the bear.  We were all happy she was able to get a fantastic trophy.  We went over to see it in the Inkens garage.  It was a good size and it's feet were huge.  Deana wasn't there.

So being a new mother, shooting a bear with an arrow, she decided she needed some time with the girls.  The next day, Deana, Jannel and the girls went to Lincoln City to get their nails done.

So if you feel like you would like to find a bear or better yet, just want to be pampered, come visit me at The Craftsman B&B, I am an expert on getting pampered, I am after all, a spoiled innkeepers dog.

p.s. I have never heard of any bad behavior bears or bear attacks in Tillamook County.  I have heard about shark attacks, but that's another blog for later.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Glasgow, A Grand Honeymoon or Anniversary Package

Our next package I want to tell you about is called: Glasgow, A Grand Honeymoon or Anniversary Package.  This is another sparkling package, 2 187 ml bottles, that's 1 glass, of our Bin #07, Mumm Napa Brut Prestige.  We like to call them “Pocket Rockets”.  Perfect for hiking, golfing or lounging around The Craftsman Bed and Breakfast.  We also throw in 2 Keepsake Craftsman B&B flutes and a box of Harry & David Truffles, for  $35.00.  What a deal for Mumm Napa Sparkling wine.

Charles Rennie Mackintosh and Glasgow go together like haggis and oatmeal.  We are big fans of him and his works and collaborations with his wife Margaret MacDonald.  They were part of a group that developed the Glasgow School, more Art Neuveau, that influenced the Arts and Crafts movement.  Margret was a painter and glass artist.  She was known for her large gesso paintings.  The group, in 1896 were invited to exhibit at the London Arts and Crafts Society Exhibition.  The Glasgow School of Art is regarded as Mackintosh's architectural masterpiece, perhaps one of the most influential buildings ever constructed in Great Britain.  Our Mackintosh room is based on another significant design, The Hill House.

Glasgow is known for it's ship building and during the industrial revolution the Japanese engineers and navy influenced the design in the area as is was more accessible than before and gained in popularity. The design focused on the quality of the space, which was meant to evoke a calming and organic feeling to the interior.  Hey that sounds like my home.

Another significant Glasgow project of Mackintosh was the Queen's Cross Church.  Said to be his most mysterious building.  It has fantastic stained glass, barrel vaulted ceilings and the color of the mill work with the white walls is like no other church.  We can not talk about art in Glasgow and not include the Willow Tea Room.  The interior design is a classic example of how good design never goes out of style.

All these great examples of my favorite style make me want to book a trip.  What is the quarantine policy for dogs visiting Scotland?  Should I have Mike pack his golf clubs?

Monday, August 25, 2008

Block Party Recap

No post on Sunday, I was worn out.  The block party on Saturday was a lot of fun.  It started later than I would have liked, I usually am down for the count around 9 p.m. and things didn't get going 'till 8.  People started gathering on the Sun Deck of The Craftsman B&B until it overflowed, then it moved to the street, where it belonged.  Locals, friends and B&B guests all joined in.  After the restaurants closed, we got another wave of guests, as the crew of the Bistro joined in.

Fronte, the Inkens service dog in training came over too.  We ran in circles in the back yard until we started driving some people crazy.  It was a good thing, I like to play with other dogs, but I'm old and playing with a 2 year old is tiring.  Abby escaped from her back yard and joined in on the fun until her sister Sami wanted out too.  All four of us were soon in the street.  We wandered around but stayed close.  I don't get to go out front without a leash very often, my nose can get me in trouble.  I will follow any scent I feel needs investigating, that can take my far away.  So I was pretty good, enough smells to keep me close.  After dark, I ended up on my stake and cable.  I am a dark colored dog and couldn't be seen to well in the night.  The street light doesn't work and we don't want it to work.  The lights of the house lit the street well enough.

Derek Inkens brought some of the buffalo he got bow hunting.  I wanted some, I was hearing everyone rave about it.  Sliders were also popular.  A group from the Pelican were close the food table all night.  Mike asked that they all back away for a bit, just like he tells me.  Chenin made her "cowboy caviar", there was cheese, chips and other picnic foods.

The lights on the house finally went off and people started cleaning up.  I kept an eye out for any scraps that may have come my way.  Laura made a first wave attempt at cleaning up and putting away food.  She made sticky buns for the next morning.  Mike went out to have a beer at the Sportsman and the Nestucca Lodge.  I stood guard by the bed until he came back.  Once Mike was back home I finally got to curl up into a ball and off to squirrel chasing dreams.

The alarm went off, it felt like just a few hours later.  Mike got up, drank a bottle of water and took 2 pills and on to another day of serving his guests.  How does he do it?  It was good to smell all my friends and get some new smell in as well.  Parties at the B&B are always fun but they can wear me out.  I used to go on a long walk for a party, it helped keep me mellow during he party.  Now, I need a day off to recover.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Pasadena, A Notch Down, But Still Fabulous Package

The next package we offer from The Craftsman B&B's wine cellar is called: Pasadena, A Notch Down, But Still Fabulous Package.  This offers a local bubble, our Bin #02, Argyle 1999 Knudsen Vineyard Brut, 2 Keepsake Craftsman B&B flutes, 2 Keepsake Spa Robes and a box of Harry & David Truffles for $130.00.

Argyle makes some great sparklers.  The 1999 KVB was reviewed by Wine Spectator and rated 91 points - "Richer than most sparkling wines, with the vinosity of a domaine-bottled Champagne. Pear, spice and toast flavors mingle effortlessly on the elegant palate, finishing with persistence. Drink now. 886 cases made." - Harvey Steiman

Pasadena is known for more than the Rose Bowl and Parade.  It is the home of Cal Tech, the real life Lambda Lambda Lambda's; you know, nerds.  But the reason we named a package after this city is because it is home to the Gamble House.  Designed by architects Greene & Greene for the Gamble family, yes, Procter & Gamble.  It is a National Historic Landmark and now a museum.  While Pasadena is known for bungalow style homes, the Gamble house is an ultimate bungalow because of its massive size.  Most of you think of a bungalow as a small well designed house, we'll get more into that later.  The other thing we like about this house is the use of Port Orford Cedar, a local Oregon tree, not a cedar but a cypress.  The stain glass entry of a California Live Oak is awe-inspiring and my favorite detail.  I also fell in love with the use of Ginko, a great tree, if you know what I mean.  It brings in some of the Asian influence seen in the design.

The main detail from the Gamble house we incorporated into our house is the classic cloud lift to the railings on our porch and deck.  We would have liked to use Port Orford Cedar for the mill work, but if money grew on trees, we would have had to plant several to afford it.  I do need to be kept in the manner I am accustomed too, don't you know.

The Gamble house is also a movie star.  Flux Capacitor anyone?  Yes it's seen in Back to the Future and is the house sent into orbit in Zathura, a Jon Favreau movie that is "so money."

The best part of our house is it is not in Southern California, it is on the beautiful Oregon Coast.  Come visit me and see how we brought a little of Pasadena to our house.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Oak Park

Here at The Craftsman B&B we offer wine packages to our guests. They are very popular as our guests choose to say in a B&B to celebrate a special occasion like birthday's and anniversaries. So in addition to their room and a great breakfast, they get a bottle of wine and other goodies to make their stay memorable.

The packages vary greatly in what is available and we have named them after famous and not so famous towns that are known for their Craftsman Style homes.

Our top of the line, ultimate package is called Oak Park. It includes a bottle from the cellar of our Bin #01, Dom Pérignon Champagne, 2 Keepsake Craftsman B&B champagne flutes, 2 Keepsake Spa Robes, a box of Oregon made Harry & David Truffles and one dozen roses. Whew, that's a lot and for only $300.00.

Dom Pérignon was a monk that "bottled the stars" and is said to be the Father of sparkling wine. He, in fact developed Méthode champenoise, the process used to make the bubbles and the wine is named in honor of him. Quality of sparkling wine is judged by the size of the bubble. Tiny Bubbles anyone? Sparkling wine is made all over the world. In France, the home of the process is Champagne and only wines form this region can be called Champagne. Outside the region but still in France is called Crémant, South Africia calls it Cap Classique, Spain's is called Cava, in Italy wine made in the Piedmont region is called Asti and in other areas, Spumante. Sekt is the German version. USA is just sparkling wine, but no matter where it comes from, look for Méthode Champenoise on the label to know it is made the "correct" way. Some cheaper brands tank ferment and it should be done in the bottle.

OK, now that I have impressed you with my trivial wine knowledge lets talk about Oak Park. This village in Cook County, Illinois is the starting point of the career of architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Here the Prairie style of design was developed to mimic the surroundings. Open plan, flat, linear lines using natural materials. Our Prairie room reflects the Prairie School style of design which offered an alternative to Classical Revival Style common in the day.

Oak Park also is home to some of the best sit-com actors, Bob Newhart and Betty White. For you literary types, Oak Park is the birthplace of some guy named Ernest Hemingway. I don't know much about him, except he likes to fish. Oh, wait in meant to say "Doh!" The voice of Homer Simpson, Dan Castellenata hails from Oak Park.

I hope you learned something new by following all the hyperlinks in today's blog. Maybe it has inspired to you take a break from the traditional B&B style and come pay me a visit. I am after all, the alternative dog, not a lab or Whatever-doodle, just a happy, spoiled Weimaraner.

Thursday, August 21, 2008


Bunnies, bunnies, rabbits and bunnies.  They are all over Pacific City!  How did it happen?  Well they do have a reputation...

The bunnies can be found west of the Nestucca River in Pacific City.  They have yet to cross the bridge to our side of town.  They mostly live in the RV Park, but wander all over.

The original hutch was the open lot, with bushes and tons of holes for the bunnies.  The owners of the RV park built a new building and swimming pool on the site, displacing the rabbits.  Most of the rabbits moved into the RV park, but you will see them at Webb Park, around the brew pub and surrounding neighborhood.  I haven't seen any on the beach, nothing for them to eat there.

So come visit me at The Craftsman B&B and I will show you were to look for the bunnies.  I like to say bunnies, it makes me happy.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Block Party

Last night we had our first Winter storm.  Nothing to extreme, but winds around 25 mph and gusting to 50 mph.  The wind was from the South, which is true for the Winter.  Summer wind is from the North.

So last week we had a lot of fog / marine layer due to the heat in the valley.  This week, so far has been overcast and waiting for the heart of the storm.

A 3 day event is what it looks like all we are getting.  It's clearing up and should be nice by the weekend.

So, this weekend...  I can hardly wait.  We are going to have a block party.  The Carlton's, Justin, Laura and Mike are hosting.  We are starting a bit late so the locals working in restaurants can make the event.  Come join us if you can, right in front of The Craftsman B&B in Pacific City, Oregon

Block Party

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Being a well spoiled Weimaraner living in the best place on earth--The Craftsman Bed & Breakfast in Pacific City, Oregon, I thought I would introduce you to the people that make up our town. We know you visit us and our town because of our location, but you return because of all the nice people you meet all over town. Oh, and to see me again.  So every now and then, I will post interviews on this blog. If you are a local and want to be interviewed, e-mail me at and I will e-mail you questions, post the answers on my blog for all the world to see.

Be amazed I can type and forget about a phone interview. If you would like to come visit me or if I encounter you on a walk, we can work out an interview face to face.

So keep in touch with this blog to find out about the people that make Pacific City the best place on the Oregon Coast.

Monday, August 18, 2008


Keys, you humans have a bunch of keys.  You shake them at babies to amuse them, dogs, not amused by shaking keys.  When you think of a key you usually think of one that opens a lock.  Keys also have different meanings. Key to the city. Key to solving the crime.  The key to your heart.  I'm using keys to type this blog. The box in the corner of a map, that's a key.  It's almost back to school and a teacher uses a key to grade a test.
The Chipmunks sing in a key that hurts my ears.  The "big man" in basketball defends the key.

OK, back to the key that opens a lock.  Fancy hotels and even not so fancy ones use card keys.  You swipe the key in you door like a credit card.  Most of the time they work, but have you ever had one that didn't?  Mike and Laura did, in a huge Las Vegas hotel.  15 minutes to get to the front desk, 15 minutes back to the room.  They could have lost $100's in that time.  Do you have a key to your front door and another key for the dead-bolt?  A lot of houses are like that.  Dead-bolts were not common before the mid 70's.

Mike and Laura stayed at a Victorian style B&B a while back.  They had 2 keys to the front door and one key to the room.  The keys were on a bent spoon as a key fob.  None of them were marked.  Mike ran out to the car to get something and couldn't figure out which key in what lock to use.  Good thing the innkeeper was in the lobby to let him in.  Now imagine staying at this place, having dinner out with a bottle of wine, it's dark, late and you can't get in the front door of a B&B you paid a lot of money to stay at.  Not a good feeling.

Here at The Craftsman B&B, your room key opens your door and the front door.  It's that easy.

Locksmithing has been a trade for a long time.  You can go to a locksmith, or a hardware store like we did, and tell them you need a key that will open this lock and that lock but no other locks.  We gave them our floor plan as a guide and they said, "You can pick it up tomorrow."  Now why would you want to stay at any other lodging when you know you just need one key here?  If they haven't figured out the one key opens all, what else haven't they figured out?

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Sunday is Syrah day 2

It's Sunday and I have some more news on my favorite neighborhood cat, Syrah.  I have been keeping my eye on her as much as I can.  She is still hanging out in the driveway, stalking the bush.  Now she has 3 1/2 confirmed catches.  How can she have 1/2 catch?  I'll, tell you.  Yesterday our neighbor called Mike and asked him to let the girls out and feed them dinner.  Mike went over and he also let Syrah out the front door.  The girls did their thing and ate dinner.  When Mike was coming home, Syrah was running down the driveway with a hummingbird in her mouth.  Mike made her stop and spit it out.  He held on to Syrah until the hummer could escape.  That's a 1/2 catch.

OK, we like Syrah and we like birds, I know, I'm a B&B dog, not a hunter, but the simple poaching has got to stop.  I have this traveling crate.  It folds up and when we are camping, I can hang out in side.  Mike has used it to keep me out of the way, like when the garage was being sided, when he built the gate, you know, to keep me safe.  So Mike put the gate in front of the bush today.  Hopefully it will keep the hummingbirds safe from my favorite neighborhood cat.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Day to Day

Well, first off I have to apologize for no post yesterday.  It was a busy day at The Craftsman B&B.  I watched Mike turn all four rooms.  He had to deal with a red wine stain in one room and other unknown spots in others.  It makes for a long day.  Good thing there were no guests showing up early, we finished at 3:55, minutes to spare.  Laundry and ironing were the tasks for the rest of the evening.  Not much excitement for me but a house full of new guests to check in.

We had a guest from London, England.  He was traveling the West on a Harley.  Sturgis was on his list of stops.  He left Bend in the morning in the 80º's and got here to Pacific City in the 60º's.  This morning he headed to Victoria, BC.

So another hot few days in the valley again.  We hovered around 60º again today.  Very foggy all day.  Moving in and out of the shoreline.  We saw some sun and took a walk to Twist and the hardware store.  We also got some glass for a vintage pachinko machine Mike and Laura got at the Library Thrift Store.  Some body gave up on the project, so Mike will give it a try.  We also dropped off some art to be framed.

On our walk, we saw that there was a car wash at the fire station benefiting Cole Ortega.  I hope they were able to raise some funds for his care.  He was involved in a dory boat / surfing accident at Cape Kiawanda earlier this Summer.

Back home we put the glass in the pachinko machine and started to figure out how it worked.  We will need to buy more balls for it.  E-Bay will save the day, I'm sure.

Well the fog is moving in again and I can hardly see across the street, so now is as good a time to take a nap, I need it, walking to the hardware store and getting a cookie can be tough work.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Wine on Wednesday

One thing about dogs you need to know is we are creatures of habit, for example, we like to eat at the same time every day.  Most suburban dogs get used to the fact that their family goes away for the day.  That's OK, because as dogs, we know you will be back.  We are happy when you come back.  Mike is around the house almost all the time, well he is now, before he was gone for 12 - 14 hours a day when he was in the graphics business.  Now, I am used to him being around, so when he does leave, I get worried and wait for him by the front door.

So I have noticed a few things about when he does leave the house.  Take last night, Laura left and Mike and I watched TV while waiting for our last guests to check in.  Another full house.  Everyone settled in and Mike heads out for a while.  Where did he go?  I watched Mike go over to the Delicate Palate Bistro.  It's a block away from the house, I can see it through the gate or if I'm up on the deck.

When they returned, they were holding wine bottles.  I have noticed that this has happened a lot this past Summer, remember, habits?  Well as it turns out, they go over for wine tasting every Wednesday night.  I found out is is $10.00 per person and includes a cheese plate, Mmmmmm I love cheese.  Oh, so back to the tasting.  Each week about 5 wines are poured, sometimes there is a theme, like "Battle of the Hemispheres."  Comparing wines from North and South of the equator: Bodegas Naia, "Las Brisas" from Spain versus a Sauvignon Blanc from South Africa and a Syrah from the Columbia Valley versus a Shiraz from Australia.  As any dog foodie knows, Syrah and Shiraz are the same grape.  So Geoff Williams Jr., a certified sommelier, challenges his distributors to bring interesting wines each week to the tastings.  Some have come out of Geoff's personal cellar as well.  So back to the bottles coming home, if you like what you tasted, you can order bottles to be delivered the next week.  Mike and Laura have liked what they tasted and have added to their personal cellar.

Over the past 10 years, Mike and Laura have been learning about wine.  Being neighbors with wine makers and friends with chefs and sommeliers have accelerated their learning.  Able to stock the wine cellar for The Craftsman B&B with local area wines for guests has added more value for our guests here at the B&B.

So after you have settled in, maybe a glass of wine on the deck would be a good way to start your stay with us.  Mike can help you decide what wine would be the best for you, now or with dinner later.  That is unless it's Wednesday, when you should be over at the Bistro for the tasting.  I'll be here, waiting for your return, maybe I'll have a drink of water out of my bowl while you're out.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Carbon Fund

A few days ago I talked about being green and that our VW was part of the big picture.  Here is a link if you would like to learn more about the VW Forrest.  Offsetting carbon emissions by funding the re-forestation of the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley.

Carbon Credits are now the largest segment of the Cleantech Industries.  This is over solar and wind power.

We had a guest stay with us a while back who was part of  He was visiting the Oregon Coast and talking to people who are members.  Our friends and neighbors who own a winery were on his list to visit.  They referred him to us, The Craftsman B&B, right across the street.
So here is a photo of our VW on the beach.  You say, "that's not very green, driving on the beach."  Many years ago, the beaches in Oregon were protected for public use by Oswald West, then governor of Oregon.  Driving on them is one of those uses.  Getting out to the secret beaches, miles from most people on the beach lets me do the crazy dog things without disturbing other people. 

Do you want to know where the secret beach in this photo is?  Come visit me.  Part of my job of meeter and greeter is to help you find interesting and fun things to do during your stay.  Don't ask me when I'm on a walk, I reserve my tips for the guests.

Oh, and if you want to see what you carbon footprint is, click here.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


I hope the title didn't scare you.  Bikers aren't the same as they used to be.  The late 60's brought us the movie Easy Rider and in the 70's we all learned about the Hells Angels.  Today, there are bikers of all kinds.

We had 2 guests at The Craftsman B&B this past weekend, they were bikers.  So 2 people show up on a Harley, big deal.  No, the showed up on one bike.  That's right 2 people on 1 bicycle.  We have had many bikers stay with us.  We have had Coast to Coasters as mention in a 7/23/08 blog, but most are biking the Oregon Coast.

This couple shipped their bike out to a shop on the coast and started riding.  When they are done, they will ship it home.  They have done several biking vacations, even their honeymoon was a tandem bike vacation.  They were very funny and in good spirits the whole time they were with us.  They took the 3 Capes Scenic Drive from Tillamook to Pacific City.  It added the steep Cape Lookout section to the ride.  That caused a bit if grief for the team, and the rain didn't help much either.  They made it.  Mike changed their dinner reservations he had made for them eariler in the week to account for the course diversion.  A good dinner at the Bistro, a great breakfast at The Craftsman and they were on there way to Newport.  I remember riding in the car to Newport.  There is a monster hill on that route, hmmm, I'm glad I don't know how to ride a bike.

Oh, and a funny thing about outlaw bikers. . . they have a web site.

Monday, August 11, 2008

It's good to be green

There is a lot of talk lately about being green.  The lodging industry is doing it's best to promote green ideals.  There are many different kinds of certification companies out there as well.  Do you have to be certified to be green?

Well I don't think so.  After seeing that some certifications cost as much as $2,000, that's where the certifying company is getting the green, you know, the M-O-N-E-Y!  I understand there should be a minimum level of accountability to call your self green, but does having an icon on you web site really make you green?  Nope.

Being inspected is a good thing.  It proves to the consumer that you have done the minimum to get the certification.  But actions is what it's all about.

Currently at The Craftsman B&B, we are not officially certified as a green business.  That doesn't mean we are not doing our part to preserve resources and not damage the environment.  We ask our guests if they would like new linens every day.  We combine trips in the car.  We use safe cleaners.  We mulch and compost.  It can go on...

Living in a remote area like Pacific City increases our driving to get the basic supplies for our business.  We are too small for food companies to deliver to us, so we must go shopping for food weekly.  We always combine our errands to that one shopping day.  We shop in Tillamook or Lincoln City, depending on errands we need to run.  We go to Salem or Portland about every 2 weeks and run many errands to combine trips.

Last winter, Mike did not get in a car for about 2 months.  Living in a small, remote town has it's up side as well.  We walk most places we need to go.  Laura rides a scooter that gets about 80 mpg.  Mikes motorcycle gets about 37 mpg.  Errands that can be done on 2 wheels, are.  When I go for a ride, I go in style in the VW Touareg.  Did you know VW has a Carbon Neutral Project?  More on that later.

Well I just wanted you all to know that being green and saying you're green is about the action you take in your daily life.  A small B&B in a small town on the Oregon Coast is how much more or less green than a large hotel in a city?  Does that hotel have an icon on it's web site?  Is that icon important to you?  Are actions more important?  Call them and ask how green they are.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Toe nails

Today I'm going to talk about something every dog needs to pay attention to.  Toe nails.  They need to be maintained.  When I lived in Lake Oswego, I had a half acre to run around.  I created a path from the deck steps to what Mike and Laura called the back, back.  I worked it up to be banked perfectly for my high speed runs to the back, back.  Well as it turns out, my personal banking made it hard for others to walk the same path.

Mike & Laura had these guys come to the house and in 2 days there was this blue stone pathway on my old pathway.  There were about 20 guys working on it, it was fun to watch.  So on with the story.  That stone path was great for my nails.  It kept them short enough not to cause me pain when I walked, yet they were long enough for me to dig when I needed to dig.  I found a lot of acorns in the back yard, must have been the squirrel.  Oh, and I had enough traction to chase the squirrel.

Now that I'm at The Craftsman B&B, my walks to the bank and hardware store don't keep my nails trimmed.  Walks on the beach, forget about it, the sand makes my pads nice and soft but doesn't grind down the nail.

So the new routine around here is this;  Mike gets the clippers, we go out back, I let him clip my nails and he cuts the grass.  That way if the quick gets nipped, I stop making a mess before the grass is cut.  Earlier this year, I got nipped pretty good and it took a really long time to stop bleeding, he used a styptic pencil.  Mike was with me the whole time and he finally got it taken care of.  That didn't scare me, I still like to get my nails done.  It makes me faster on the hardwood floors.  I can get to the door before the end of "ding-dong."  How fast are you?

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Yeah, It's Summer

Last night we had a bit of rain come through Pacific City.  Nothing major, we call it Oregon Mist, it lasted a while and a few drops of rain.  This morning I'm out sniffing my normal spots and I see a sure sign of summer.

Now, the growing season is difficult here at The Craftsman B&B.  It just doesn't get hot enough for warm crops like tomatoes.  I saw a bud on a dahlia bush.  Now the roses have been around a while, big deal.  The Rosa Rugosas even have hips forming, the birds love them.  Cherries are turning red on the tree.

When I lived in Lake Oswego, Oregon, we had a bunch of roses and dahlias.  All sorts of plants.  Living on the coast has limited me in the plants I see.  One thing for sure, all the plants in my yard smell like me.  Just the way I like it.

Friday, August 8, 2008

On top of Mt Hebo

I'm a little late posting the blog today.  Mike and I went to the top of Mt Hebo.  He wanted to see how long it would take to drive from The Craftsman B&B to the summit.  Once we were up there we walked out to a clearing that used to be an Air Force RADAR station.

We made the trip today because Mike is officiating a wedding there on Saturday.  Yeah, Mike is a minister.  He performs weddings in and around Pacific City, Oregon.

Mike became an Ordained Minister with The Universal Life Church. He did it online.  Mike performs non-denominational ceremonies.  You can write your own or Mike will help you pick out bits and pieces from other ceremonies.  He has married people on Portland's own volcano and local beaches.

So if you want to get married at the beach, around Pacific City, give Mike a shout, he' love to help you.

Thursday, August 7, 2008


Lets talk about some made up words.  Staycation is one of those words.  I know only a few words; sit, down and over.  I am more of a phrase dog: Do you want to go for a ride?  Are you ready for dinner?  Let's do it.  Anyway, I digress.

I thought a staycation was to stay at home when you had time off from work.  But the travel industry, which I am a part of, is using the word for a vacation spot within one tank of gas.  Well, that really made my ears perk up.  Most of our guests are within one tank of gas.  They come from the Portland area and Salem, Bend, you get the idea.  So if we are already a tank of gas distance away, why haven't you come to visit me?

As previous blog entries have mentioned, life here at The Craftsman B&B is pretty good.

Another thing I've noticed is back to school ads on TV.  Yeah, I watch reality TV, it's the thing to do in the Summer.  So during a break on this dog show I watch, I saw ads for back to school.  Let me tell you a little something about that.  It's still the first week in August, that's Summer!  We don't want to hear about school.

OK, back on message.  As the official greeter, I beg, yeah I know, I'm not supposed to beg, I ask you to come to Pacific City, stay here and enjoy your Summer.  Escape the heat of, yes, Summer.  I tell you it's still Summer, although I did see a nice backpack in one of those ads, may be the perfect gear for another hike....

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The Weather

An ice breaker is to talk to someone about the weather.  It is a safe topic and you aren't likely to offend a person you just met.  So in today's blog let's do just that. No, not offend anyone, just weather talk.

Pacific City, Oregon is a great place to live.  The weather is very mild through out the year.  It rarely freezes and is rarely above 80º.  This year, we had snow on April 20th and 93º May 23rd.  Very strange.  We tell everyone, "the weather is always better in Pacific City."

When it is cold in the Willamette Valley, it is warmer here.  When it is hot, it's cool here.  Yesterday was a classic example.  91º in Portland, 71º in Pacific City.

The Winter is very mild.  Low temperature in the mid 30's and highs in the 50's.  It does rain here during the Winter, oh yeah, in the Fall and Spring too.  The winter brings the big storms and big seas.  Wind gusts over 100 mph is very common a few storms a year.  Sideways rain, we get that too.  The good thing about it all is that the storms come in and then leave.  Unlike Portland and the Valley, they have grey skies for weeks.  We see the sun almost every day.

Summer days see the marine layer hang out until 10:00 or so.  It then burns off for a nice sunny day reaching in to the 70's.  Then around sunset, the marine layer moves back in to cool us off and the Valley too.

So, if you are too hot, come to The Craftsman B&B in Pacific City.  If you are too cold, come here as well.  I am an all weather.  I do wear a coat when it's rainy, nobody likes the smell of a wet dog.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

B&B 101, Chapter 7

Oscar Meier here, this is the last entry and my favorite part of B&B 101. When you arrive, I get to meet you. This is my main job around the B&B, the official meeter and greeter. You may hear me bark a few times, not to worry; I also act as the doorbell. The front door will open and my nose will be sticking out, ready for that first whiff. I’ll back up and let you in. My greeting is more like sniffing you to find out who you are, whom you know and where you have been. Mike will tell you about what he has baked for the day, it’s usually cookies, but brownies, blondies and lemon bars are made too. He’ll tell you about the coffee machine and how he can make you a coffee, espresso, latté, cappuccino, whatever you like. All the while, I’ve been checking out your luggage.

Up to the room you go. I will go up the stairs with you too, just to make sure the room is to your liking. Mike will tell you about the fridge in the landing, how it’s filled with water and soda. You can put whatever you’d like in there too. If your lucky, you may have the chance to look in the other rooms before other guests show up. It’s OK to peek.

Now that you are settled in, make yourself at home. Check out the travel guides about Oregon, the coast and Tillamook County in your room. Feel free to lounge around in the living room. There are books and DVD’s to browse. Sitting out on the sun porch with a glass of wine is a favorite way to spend and afternoon.

Ask Mike about the local restaurants and what you should do or where you should go. He knows a lot about the area. There is a book of menus and attraction brochures in the dinning room. There is a cabinet of board games too. When you come back from dinner and are relaxing in your room or common areas of the house and need anything, be sure to ask.

You'll know you've picked the right B&B if you feel like a treasured guest. We will try to spoil you here, well no more than I am spoiled. The greatest compliment you can give an innkeeper is to refer them to a friend. Online reviews are the latest rave. Mike will follow up a few days after your stay with links to our review pages. If you would like to tell future guests about your stay, we will appreciate it. 

Innkeepers and me, Oscar Meier, are hospitality experts so relax and enjoy your stay at The Craftsman B&B!

Monday, August 4, 2008

B&B 101, Chapter 6

This is another chapter in B&B 101. This is what I, Oscar Meier, the spoiled innkeepers dog, think you should know when deciding on where to stay.

Let’s talk about the little things that you never ask about, but you are surprised to find out about and when you don’t get it, you notice it wasn’t even offered. What did he just say? I know I’m a dog and not everything is going to be clear, but read that sentence again. The personal service at a B&B is like no other. Besides being greeted by me you should ask about amenities, at the B&B and the surrounding area when making your reservation. Innkeepers usually have relationships with the local restaurants, owners and chefs. They can offer the best places for what you are in the mood for. Innkeepers will try to find out the things you like or are likely to like. They can recommend activities to fit your style. Have you ever used a concierge service at 4 or 5 star hotels? Mike and Laura have and they learned how important customer service is in the lodging business. I have hiked most trails in the area and Mike and I can tell you about them. Mike and Laura have dined in most of the local eateries and can tell you about them. We have all hit the beaches and gone for drives in the area and guess what, we can tell you about them. Try that at a chain hotel or small motel.

B&Bs do not have 24-hour reservation offices. If you are making your reservation by phone, call during hours that you wouldn't mind being called yourself and be mindful of time zone differences. Calling before check out time can be a challenge to most innkeepers. Asking questions about rooms is always welcome. A lot of B&B websites usually have most of the information you are looking for, but don’t hesitate to call. If you or anyone in your party requires an inn that's fully handicapped accessible, check with the Innkeeper beforehand. At The Craftsman B&B, a historic house, is not handicapped accessible. All our rooms are on the second floor. If you do have mobility challenges, we suggest not reserving The Prairie Room due to the claw foot tub. Two ladies traveling together? We suggest The Stickley Room; the double vanity allows both to get ready at the same time. The layout of rooms in the house may be of concern. Morning light is what you need to wake up? Try The Mackintosh Room. Innkeepers will try to find the best fit for you. Do feel free to book online at any time, whether your in you PJ’s or not.

Make your reservation early. Although some B&Bs welcome "walk-ins," all B&Bs and inns prefer an advance reservation and deposit. Since most B&Bs are small, rooms might not be available when you want to visit. If the inn is booked, innkeepers usually will suggest alternate dates or suggest other inns in the area.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

B&B 101, Chapter 5

What’s the deal with the bathrooms? Dorm life is best left to, well dorm life. All our rooms have private, attached baths. What does that mean? Your room has a door to the hall; your bathroom is inside your room. Some B&B’s have private baths, however sometimes it is in the hall exclusively for your use. Some bathrooms are shared with other guests. It’s kind of like me marking a tree. All the other dogs know I was there.

Privacy in a historic house is not like a concrete, downtown hotel. But if you remember, we remodeled The Craftsman B&B in 2005 and we planned for your privacy. Extra thick insulated walls and thick carpet padding are just a few of the things we have done to make your stay memorable. How many other B&B’s have thought of that?

For your lounging around, we provide robes for our guests. I’ve seen guests wearing them to get coffee in the morning. They wear them to go to the hot tub in the garden. I’ve seen guests checking out our DVD collection in robes. It’s just another amenity The Craftsman B&B provides to make our guest feel at home.

Sunday is Syrah day

Well another Sunday.  Last Sunday I talked about the neighbors cat, Syrah.  Well I had some good long looks at her again this week.  As I said last week, I watch her from my perch on the back porch, laying in the driveway.  Today she was stalking hummingbirds in the fuchsia bush.  Oh, and she was napping too.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

B&B 101, Chapter 4

Chapter 4 of B&B 101 is all about my favorite topic: What’s for breakfast? I get the same thing for breakfast and dinner. I have simple tastes, that is, I eat so fast, I simply do not taste much. Well your breakfast is a big deal to The Craftsman B&B. That’s half of your stay, right? Well it is a good reason guests return to our B&B. Mike is not a trained chef; he has though perfected the dishes he does serve.

B&B’s serve breakfast differently. Some are buffets, fill your own plate and find a place at the table. Some buffets are several courses, again with the up and down. Some B&B’s and Inn’s are so large, they have different seatings or you have to wait for an open spot at the table. Can you believe that? Some deliver breakfast to your door. What if there is something that you require, do you go to the kitchen door and ask for it? Mike and Laura have stayed in a lot of B&B’s, I stay at home with a pet sitter, usually a friend, so I’m happy. They have seen what works and what doesn’t. They have seen what makes guests happy and what doesn’t. They decided to serve breakfast in one seating. Guest have a chance to meet each other, talk about what they did the day before and what they plan to do that day. Breakfast is at 9:00 a.m. but they have served guests early for fishing or other activities. It’s that “at home” feeling guest appreciate the most.

When making a reservation, Mike will always asks if you have any special dietary needs. Unlike larger B&B’s that have may rooms and many more guests to feed every morning, Mike tailors the meals to fit all sorts of allergies and dislikes guests may have. Wheat free. Nut free. Nightshades, dairy, vegetarian, Oh my. Mike handles it all. He will search on his computer, when I’m not blogging or surfing puppy sites, if he doesn’t have something tried and true. Gluten free chocolate chip cookies? Made them!

Mike and Laura are always trying new dishes to serve their guests. They invite friends and neighbors over to “experiment.” They always want to have a different dish each time you visit. I remember many scents of returning guests, some visit 3 or 4 times a year. I can’t count so that is just a guess. Unless asked for a repeat of a dish, there will always be something new to try every time you visit us. Me, it’s the some old thing, meal after meal. Aren’t you lucky to get something new?

Friday, August 1, 2008

B&B 101, Chapter 3

Here we go on Chapter 3. You decided on the town, and looked at your options on where a B&B is located in that town. You looked at what the B&B looks like. Now it’s time to see if a particular B&B is a good fit for you.

Most B&B’s do not allow smoking, children or pets.

Polices are different at each inn, so verify them by phone before you make your reservation. Policies not only vary between B&B’s but even at the same B&B there may be some rooms that are appropriate for children while the rest of the inn is not child friendly. The same policy may be true with pets. For all policies, don't assume - ASK.

At The Craftsman B&B, we do not allow pets. You have me, Oscar Meier, to pet, scratch and photograph. You don’t have to walk me, feed me or deal with any other services a 100-pound dog may need. You only get the good part of dog life.

We do not allow children under 18 unless you book the whole house. We are a destination people seek out to relax and unwind. A lot of our guests are celebrating anniversaries and birthdays. Some have come here to propose on the beach. Some need time away from the daily family life. That said, The Craftsman B&B is a kid free haven for our guests. When you had your child, people may have told you your life would change. One of the changes is that you won’t be able to stay at most B&B’s. That said, if you are planning a family get together and want to book the entire house, we could do that, kids and all.

Ask about deposit and cancellation policies before you book. Your deposit means you are committing to the B&B and they are committing to have your room for you. Since cancellations affect a small B&B greatly, they will often result in a forfeiture of your deposit. Our cancellation policy requires 7 days notice. After 7 days, a refund of a gift certificate if the room is re-booked.

Ask about check in and check out times. Try to arrive within them. Innkeepers can usually be flexible if you need special arrangements. Since innkeepers are expecting you and want to be there to greet you, be courteous and let them know if your arrival time changes. Arriving early may mean you miss out on a special service planned for check in time. Here at The Craftsman B&B, Mike makes cookies, brownies or something tasty every day at 4:00, the check in time.