Tag Archives: Runyon Canyon

Adventures in Dogsitting

Somewhere between 25 and 25 1/2 I somehow became a “dog person”.  Not really sure how that happens. Growing up we had a dog when I was very young, Scooter, he was a super cute cocker spaniel my parents had years before this little bundle of trouble arrived in their lives, but unfortunately I barely remember him. When the economy was in a better place (pretty sure that’s anytime in the history of the world before now), the house I spent my first few years of fabulous life in sold within a week and the house we were building would not be ready for months so we had to move into an apartment. At that time, Scooter went to live with my grandparents and unfortunately never made it to the new house. After that, we never had pets again. Ok, actually I did have 4 goldfish and I named them after characters on 90210… sad thing is, I’M NOT JOKING! But, no more dogs for us. Growing up I was always scared of big dogs, because well I’m a little girl and I don’t like things that bite me, bark at me or jump on me… usually 😉

I can not pin point the exact time, place or event that made me a “dog person” but over the last 1 1/2 years I’ve somehow found myself letting furry little dogs sleep in my bed, wake me up in the middle of the night barking, taking them to bars and showering with them (story to follow!) Yes, I have become the free West Hollywood “pretty girls with little dogs” dog sitter! Let me introduce you to my clan and share with you my favorite memory with each adorable little creature.

I’ll begin with my first little dog sitting victim, Lola. Although, come to find out, she was definitely not the victim!

As her Mommy (my BFF) always says, “at least she’s pretty!” Truer words have never been spoken!  She may look cute and tiny but this is one fierce little long-haired chihuahua! My BFF saved Lola from a mean man who was using her for breeding and abusing her so naturally the little one is not too found of the male race! She’s a “little” bark-y and she tends to bite at any male within striking distance, but other than that she’s as cute as a button and she loves me so that’s all that matters 🙂

My BFF goes out-of-town once or twice a month for work so therefore I’m on “Princess Lola Duty”! Luckily, she lives about 1/2 mile from my house so it makes dog sitting for her about a 2 minute drive or 10 minute walk away! I always try to go see little one as often as I can throughout the days that my BFF is out-of-town and bring her to my house when I can, but this semester has proven to be a tad bit more difficult to get over there as often when Mommy is out-of-town. She is always left with plenty of food and water and since she’s only 5 lbs she’s pretty low maintenance, but one rather difficult week of exams there might have been a night when I forgot to go over and let her out before I went to bed. I awoke the next morning with a text message from my BFF about how things were going in NY, then all of a sudden… LOLA!!!  I literally sprang from bed, put on flip-flops and my glasses, jumped in my car and almost ran over 3 smart cars and a bicyclists on my way to her house! I ran in and of course little one still had food, water and was doing just fine so I threw on her leash and took her out for a walk. It wasn’t til I was walking around the corner in her neighborhood that I realized I was wearing gym shorts that said “Miller Lite” on the butt and a Batman t-shirt with flip-flops and glasses, needless to say, not my best look, but making sure my little niece was good was my first priority 🙂

Next, meet Lily.  My precious little Lily. I call her snowball because she is  a little white, ball of love!

I was given the honor and privilege of looking after this little cuddle bug for a whole week last year and we had such a great time together!  We played with other dogs…

We played “crawl on Aunt Whitney”…

And yes, we went to Happy Hour!

The last day of her stay with me I decided to let her cuddle with me in my bed while I worked on homework. apparently I got carried away on the homework and forgot to take her out for a while, before I knew it I was being peed on! I grab the little one and remove her from my bed quickly.  I realize shortly after that my little snowball now has a limp on one of her back legs.  I begin to think that as I was gently, but swiftly removing her from my bed that I might have broken one of her little tiny legs, I now begin to call my Mom, my Dad, GOOGLE was on overload with questions like “how to tell if a dogs leg is broken” or “what is wrong if a dog is limping?” or “how to cure a dogs broken leg”.  You get the picture, I was freaking out!  I thought my friend was going to return and I was going to have to tell her I broke her dog and she would never let me see my little snowball again! Luckily, she took the news very well and said that she does the “gimpy” thing all the time and she was fine. OMG, thank the Lord!!! Over 1 year later, I still get to see my little fluff ball whenever I make the journey into “the valley”!

My last, but definitely not least, little furry friend is Aphrodite. Yes, you may be thinking the same thing I did when I was first introduced to her, “who would name a dog Aphrodite??” but many celebrities also name their dog’s oddly, Barry Manilow’s dog was named “Bagel” while Janet Jackson named her dog “Buckwheat”, Anne Hathaway named her dog “Esmeralda” while Nicole Richie named her dogs “Foxy Cleopatra” and “Honeychild” and Reese Witherspoon’s little bulldog is “Frank Sinatra”. I don’t have the time, nor do I care where or why these celebrities named their dogs this, but I do know how my little furry friend became the “Greek goddess of love”!

My girl Jaime found Aphrodite wandering the streets of Greece alone, a small, malnourished little puppy so she brought her back to CA and nursed her back to health. Aphrodite is the easiest and most mellow dog I’ve ever been around and how could you not fall for this little ball of love?!?

There was a time at the beginning of this year when barely a day went by that Aphrodite wasn’t at my house. One day I decide to take her to Runyon Canyon with me!  She’s a tough and athletic girl so I brought her all the way to the top, we went past her friend “Mr Ed the horse” and up the dirt path to the very top of the mountain.  Just about the time we get to the top I notice how dark it is getting.  I bust out my phone to take a pic from the top…

… and down pour!  Now Aphrodite and I are literally running down the side of the mountain, through the mud, soaking wet!  It was actually a pretty fun run, but when we got to the bottom she was one soppy mess of a Greek Goddess!!!

Now the question becomes, how am I going to get her home in my car like this… so this happened…

Hahahaha this picture is amazing because it’s so her, she’s like a little person! And she literally just sat like this the whole way home, I’m telling you, best dog ever!!!

Now the question is, what do I do with her when I get her home, well I must carry her in because I don’t want her to track the mud all over the floors, then I’ll set her in the shower and wash her, what do you wash dogs with? BedHead Brunette Goddess Shampoo?? Sure!

Well this is kind of working, but she now will not move so it’s looking like we’re showering together!

Oh my gosh she looks so traumatized hahaha, but clean at least 🙂

And now time to dry and cuddle!

Oh my gosh she’s so cute! She and her Mommy have moved back to Northern California and I miss both my beautiful blondes very much!!!

Moral of the story is, I may not be the best dog sitter of all time, but I’m free and I love being an aunt to these amazing little doggies!

My LA Escape Place

For those of you reading this blog who know me well, you know my feelings about LA… if you don’t know me, these are not those warm-happy-mushy feelings like you get when eating a fresh-baked chocolate chip cookie, this is more the feeling of dunking that cookie into a glass of bad milk and tasting nothing but sourness once it hits your lips.  But since this blog is only about those warm-happy-mushy feelings I’m here to tell you about the one place in LA that actually gives me those feelings, Runyon Canyon. I can’t remember my first time at Runyon Canyon, but I can tell you that I’ve been hundreds of times since.  Right smack in the middle of Hollywood you would not imagine you would find a quiet, happy place away from all the Mayhem but after you finally find parking it is just that.  Filled with literally all kinds of people from tourists in jeans taking pictures pretty much the entire hike up and down to hard-core athletes running up and down the mountain with weight vests on, there are all kinds (I’ve actually thought about starting a website www.peopleofrunyon.com, could be funny).  I would say I fall somewhere in between.  There was a time in the recent past where I ran up and down Runyon (no weight vest, I’m not that crazy!) in preparation for my first trail-run half marathon, but I also enjoy a nice leisurely hike with my BFF Erin or  taking the ‘rents up to the top when they come to visit!

What a cute, active family we are 🙂  Anyway, my other favorite part of Runyon is the free Yoga offered daily.  Yes.. I said FREE!  Runyon has been called “a hippie spot” more than once. You will find a cart of food and ice-cold beverages at the bottom of Runyon with no attendee, just a sign that says “Everything $1.00” and a slot to put your money in. Yes, in the middle of Hollywood there is a place that runs on the honor system, shocking but also refreshing! The free yoga is another “Hippie” aspect of Runyon. Just true Yogis that enjoy spreading their practice with anyone and everyone.  A donation can be made, but all of these classes have been going strong at Runyon for over 10 years and they are amazing!  I always go to Donna’s class, she has the best voice that is so soothing and she turned me into a full-blown Yogi! There are also the cutest little gophers that pop their head up in between your legs while you’re in downward facing dog. It makes me so happy to see little critters and feel the fresh air (well through the smog, lol) while doing yoga, makes me feel like I’m not living in a concrete jungle, even if it’s just for an hour!

Yes, he is adorable and yes that is a girl with a hoola-hoop in the background, told you this was a hippy place lol. Needless to say I’ve enjoyed making this place my little escape from LA mayhem for the last year and a half.