Holiday Greetings. 

Vintage 2008 is over, our wines are tucked safely away in barrel and the family is getting ready for fall and winter.  In the 14 years that we have had our little winery, I have never had to write our holiday newsletter in such an economic climate, with so many folks suffering.  On top of this, we know that many animal  shelters are struggling as well - fundraising becomes tougher and tougher just to pay the operating bills; more and more animals are being abandoned than ever due to hard times and record home foreclosures.  In the spirit of not  depressing everyone (including myself), I have decided to take the ’glass half full’ approach and write these words with a believe that ‘it will get better.'

For us dog lovers, we know each and every day that our dogs will wake up excited to see us, eager to take their walk, ready to snuggle in our laps and thankful for their bowl of food.  Our dog Patch doesn’t know when the stock market declines or rebounds; he sleeps on the couch equally well through either!  Patch is blissfully ignorant of such events… or is he?  The sheer pleasure for the moment that Patch has each and everyday, and us with him, may seem like ‘la la land’ to some.  But maybe it is the ultimate life philosophy… living for the moment.  To us, it has always been the secret  essence of “all things dog.”  Nothing against cats (we have two), birds, pot belly pigs, snakes or other pets, but we think dogs are special in this regard.  Some may disagree, but we’re sticking to our story and enjoying each and every “dog” moment. 

Patch has just celebrated his 10th birthday.  His third in our family.  We have slowly found everyway possible way to spoil him rotten.  His winery days are now accompanied by his ‘work’ dog bed… the cement floor was just too cold for our old man!  The house now has 8 ‘official’ dog bed areas for Patch - 2 couches, 2 human queen beds, 2 inside dog beds and 2 outside dog beds.  Brenda is trying to re-capture the guest bedroom, but Patch waits until she leaves the house to jump on the guest bed and claim it as ‘his’.  Lastly, our 14 month old twins Katie and Porter are learning to eat, and are not always successful in getting the food into their mouths. Now most dogs would hover by kids high chairs to lick up all the wayward food, but not our Patch.  He waits along side the kids, until we pick up the food piece by piece and put it into his bowl.  Only then will he devour the scraps! 

Our kids love Patch. Patch, in turn, is sweet and gentle towards them.  Little fingers poking nostrils and eyeballs don’t phase him… as long as he gets to share the couch.  This time of year, the family gathers on weekends to watch football, especially when our teams are on TV.  Brenda has adopted Katie as a Green Bay Packer fan, both wearing their jerseys proudly.  Porter, oh poor Porter is stuck with Daddy’s Oakland Raiders.  He wears his jersey on game days; thank heavens he has no clue that they are so bad!  Patch is staying neutral for the time being.

From our very happy family to yours!

Brenda, Chris, Katie, Porter and Patch wish you a very Happy Holidays and hope our wines grace yours or your friends’ holiday tables.

Dream of a Leash Free World.

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