Previous month:
October 2008
Next month:
December 2008

California Made Grace Note Chimes Mariposa

Let the Wind Chimes   by Barbara L. Steinberg© 

California Grace Note Windchimes Mariposa Hear the most heavenly on the wind chime images...harmonically tuned aluminum...longer, clearer reresonance. I tell you, once you've heard a Grace Note Chime you'll always know this incredible tone.  With a long history (nearly 20 years), the business was born out of the inspiration and dreams of brothers Jeff & Mark Kile. And a long, successful history it's been. But this talented California duo still creates their magic in the small community of Mariposa California not far from Yosemite National Park. A non-descript warehouse along scenic Hwy. 49 and the backroads of California's Gold Country.

The chimes are addictive and have a dedicated following. With prices California made Grace Note Petite Windchimeranging from $53 to hundreds of dollars, lovers of Grace Note are true fans. You too can own one, two, or more of these fabulous California made windchimes...a lyrical work of art. The chimes are available  and also at the Grace Note facility in Mariposa  California. And at this time of year, Grace Note offers incredible discounts at the Mariposa location and online.

On November 29, on-site only in Mariposa California, all Grace Note Chimes are on sale at a discount of 40% off.  Can't make it to Mairposa? Well, you're in luck. December 9-11, 2008 all Grace Note Chimes sold online are sold at a 35% discount.

Grace Note also practices environmentally safe policies in the making of each and every wind chime. To help safeguard the planet for current and future generations Grace Note:

  • Recycles 95% or more of total waste

  • Scraps of aluminum, saw dust, and shavings always recycled

  • Grace Notes Wind Chimes are designed for a lifetime, not the trash can!

  • Use only biodegradable soaps and oils for cutting

  • No Toxic By-Products Produced When Making Wind Chimes

  • They primarily use post consumer cardboard and paper for shipping

  • All wind chimes are guaranteed for 10 years and any that are damaged beyond repair will be recycled by Grace Notes.

 Buy California-made and California-grown...the job you save may be your own. Lots more great California-made products are coming your way through the California Travel Insider.


Santa Barbara Bow Wow, Wow!

by Barbara L. Steinberg© 

Through my travels I have probably photographed more dogs than people.  Though I only have cats, I grew up with a dog and take great delight in interviewing them and their people. Whenever possible, I email photos to newly acquainted puppies (I call all dogs "puppies" no matter the age or size) or send links to stories that sometimes include puppy faces and tails ( and tales!).  Here are a few special pups I encountered on a recent trip to the "American Riviera," Santa Barbara. A very dog-friendly destination; and clearly the pups couldn't be happier.

Fish and Game Dog Ellen OWAC Santa Barbara 2008 Credit Barbara SteinbergCalifornia Department of Fish & Game K-9 dogs, Ellen and Wrigley, are part of the departments poaching program trained in detecting quagga mussels, an invasive freshwater mussel that threatens California’s economy and environment. The dogs will also be able to detect ammunitions and associated odors, providing California with an additional level of homeland security. While some dogs will be detection only, others will also be trained to apprehend Fish and Game Dog Wrigley OWAC Santa Barbara 2008 Credit Barbara Steinbergsuspects as well. The two DFG canine officers were providing a demonstration of their skills for the Outdoor Writers Association of California (OWAC) conference at Fess Parker's Doubletree Resort & Hotel in Santa Barbara. Though both dogs pack a full-set of chompers, they are very user friendly.

The members of OWAC, myself included, were thrilled to see how these marvelous animals worked side-by-side with their human colleagues. Living in northern California, we appreciated their coming such a long way for our benefit. Of course, spending time in Santa Barbara...well, aren't they just the lucky dogs!

Santa Barbara Willie English Bull Dog on 21 Credit Barbara Steinberg314

Heading out from the Fess Parker on a Sunday afternoon, I was immediately drawn to the arts and crafts display just across Cabrillo Avenue fronting on East Beach. Every Sunday, rain or shine, hundreds of Santa Barbara County artisans claim a designated spot to sell their wares at the Santa Barbara Arts & Crafts Show. All items must be made and sold by the person representing them. Okay, so that's a whole other story. On this particular Sunday, I was fortunate enough to meet Wille who truly defines, "only a face a mother could love!" Four years old and weighing in at a svelte 50 pounds, this stunning English bull dog was enjoying just another perfect day in Santa Barbara. I was so enthralled by his charm and effervescence that I almost forgot to get Willie's mom's contact information. That's the problem when you're in the presence of true celebrity.

Santa Barbara Poms Sadie and Gracie Resue Dogs Fess Parker Credit Barbara Steinberg 

The next day, I met two very happy pomernians who have much for which to be thankful. First, and foremost, these two darlings are rescue dogs. Secondly, Sadie (left) and Gracie (right) were vacationing in Santa Barbara at Fess Parker's Doubletree Resort & Hotel, one of many dog-friendly hotels in the region. Just another rags to riches story.


Butterfly Beach Bow Wows Biltmore Fletch and Rooster 1 Credit Barbara Steinberg 

Jack Russell Terriers, Fletch and Rooster, were relishing a ho-hum day at spectacular Butterfly Beach in Montecito. Chosen by Travel+Leisure Magazine as  one of America's "Top 10" beaches, Butterfly Beach is hugely popular with dogs and their owners, and anyone else who appreciates a fabulous stretch of beach. I don't know about you, but a day at this beach and suddenly dog-day afternoon takes on a whole new meaning.



Santa Barbara Four Seasons Locals Mac and Sam Have a Snack 2  Leaving paradise is never easy and this was very much the case as I organized myself to depart Santa Barbara. My last day and night were spent at the Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara in exclusive Montecito; now who's the lucky dog? As I was readying myself for this most painful departure, one last puppified moment provided another smile. Two very happy puppies bounded their way to the hotel entrance...their mother in tow. I assume on their way to Butterfly Beach, Sam (front) and Mac ran straight for a portico column. One-time shelter dogs, this Santa Barbara Four Seasons Locals Mac and Sam Have a Snack 3Australian Shepard- and Border Collie-mixed pup are Montecito locals and were just stopping by for a snack. Sam and Mac know that the very pet-friendly Four Season keeps dog bones for visiting dog-nitaries. They waited, intently, while the hotel staff-person taunted them (ever so slightly) with the dog bones. But in the end, two more very happy puppies! Yep, it's a dog's life.




P.S. For all you pooches on the prowl for more dog-friendly places to stay and play with your human Dog Lovers Caliof companions, look no further. Pick-up a copy of The Dog Lover's Companion to California and start packing. 


P.P.S. Also, look for this wonderful book about Butterfly Beach.

ButterFly Beach Book