Andrea Martin founded Jackie's Play & Stay so no dog owner would have to endure the same experience she had after boarding her four-year-old border collie, Jackie. After dropping her off on a Friday, Andrea picked an ill Jackie up on Sunday. Her rapidly declining health suggested some form of poisoning, and she soon passed. Determined not to let Jackie's death be in vain, she founded a daycare and boarding facility where owners could feel secure every time they parted with their best friends.
Today, Andrea and her caretakers earn owners' and dogs' trust by getting to know each four-legged guest individually to ease their transitions in and out of Jackie's Play & Stay. They also keep the 14,000-square-foot facility meticulously clean, using disinfectants that target canine viruses and fungi. Believing that a tired dog is a happy dog, the staff supervises indoor and outdoor play and socializing. They provide small dogs with their own play space, and welcome dogs to relax on their own if that's what they prefer. The facility’s suites for overnighters are climate-controlled, with dog beds and relaxing music that plays through the night. The staff also encourages owners to leave their pets with a familiar item, such as a favorite blanket or the neighborhood fire hydrant. Beyond daycare and boarding, Jackie's Play & Stay extends to grooming and training, where dogs learn everything from basic obedience to how to drive stick. Today, Andrea and her caretakers earn owners' and dogs' trust by getting to know each four-legged guest individually to ease their transitions in and out of Jackie's Play & Stay. They also keep the 14,000-square-foot facility meticulously clean, using disinfectants that target canine viruses and fungi. Believing that a tired dog is a happy dog, the staff supervises indoor and outdoor play and socializing. They provide small dogs with their own play space, and welcome dogs to relax on their own if that's what they prefer. The facility’s suites for overnighters are climate-controlled, with dog beds and relaxing music that plays through the night. The staff also encourages owners to leave their pets with a familiar item, such as a favorite blanket or the neighborhood fire hydrant. Beyond daycare and boarding, Jackie's Play & Stay extends to grooming and training, where dogs learn everything from basic obedience to how to drive stick.
Bobbi Colorado and her husband Ken Beggs watched as their sly raccoon prot?g? crept across the room just as they had taught him. Having reached the whirring treadmill's power source, he yanked the cord out of the wall, sending actor Brendan Fraser flying over the top of the machine mid-sprint. The raccoon?who filmed this scene for 2010's Furry Vengeance ?is just one of many animal actors mentored by the husband-and-wife team, who have been training domestic and exotic critters for more than 35 years through their business The Wild Bunch.
Often disappointed by the kennels they visited to find dogs for their projects, the pair decided that they would open a better one themselves. They soon set up Bobbi Colorado's Canine Camp on their 10-acre property, building six spacious tree-shaded play yards and large sleeping quarters. The camp is designed to be "a safe, fun, happy place, so when you go away, it's your dog's vacation too," says Colorado. During stays, canines play together outside or nap in the sun while under 24-hour-a-day supervision. The staff members also post photos and videos of the frolicking pooches online so that their owners can check up on them. In addition to boarding, the camp also offers training classes to teach dogs basic obedience or train them for work in movies, commercials, and print ads.
Besides their pet boarding business, Colorado and Beggs' love for animals drives them to train rescue animals for roles, often saving them from euthanization. For the movie Secondhand Lions, for instance, Colorado recruited pigs from a slaughterhouse, and afterward sent them on to work with autistic children through an animal-therapy program.
“We hold the record for world’s smallest food truck,” Verts Kebap owner Michael declares in a prominent German accent. “They are Smart cars, all three of them. They took a year to develop.” German engineers spent those 12 months retrofitting sinks, refrigeration units, and food warmers into the backs of cars each roughly the size of two stacked bathtubs. But the record-setting vehicles—which each hold 50 sandwiches or one competitive eater who just ate 50 sandwiches—have a greater function. “They are for learning about the city, and teaching the city about our food. That’s how we hope to bring our food to the U.S.”
Verts is a casual-dining concept built around the döner kebap sandwich, which over the last 40 years has became the most popular fast food in Germany. “It doesn’t exist in the U.S.,” Michael explains. “We are wanting to share that.” While pursuing their MBAs, Verts founders Michael and Dominik craved the street food from their native country, inspiring their business concept. Their tasty pita-stuffed sandwiches employ Texas-raised meat, locally made bread, and house-made sauces––all the same composition as those found in Germany. That’s not to mention Turkish-style seasonings of pepper spices, basil, cayenne, and paprika.
The mobile food trucks, while conceptually innovative, are meant to bring people into their stubbornly immobile restaurants. They believe this is their true calling. “We get many people coming from Germany. People who have been in the military or traveled across Europe. Students. They are all happy to have those tastes again. And we are pleased to bring them."
Endorsed by financial author Dave Ramsey and highlighted on Oprah Winfrey's Life Lift blog, eMeals charts out a week's worth of dollar- and health-savvy dinner recipes to relieve the burden of kitchen-related stress. Each week, organized grocery lists based on food style, family size, and even grocery store showcase flavorful culinary creations for discerning palates. Plans developed by working parents capitalize on sale items at stores such as Walmart, Publix, and Kroger, and an "any store" list can be used to navigate the aisles of other favored grocers. Family meal plans serve seven meals for three to six people, whereas plans for two are tailored to singles, couples, or a pair of sock puppets on a date atop a chest of drawers.
Special paleo, gluten-free, clean-eating, low-fat, and portion-controlled meal-plan options aid nongeneric eaters in assembling targets for their teeth and fitness regimens. The classic version of the Walmart family plan supplies culinary sustenance to families of three to six for an average weekly cost of $75?$85 and takes advantage of the store's regularly discounted prices. A duo can fill a Publix cart for $50?$60 a week, including side dishes.
Born of founder Jane DeLaney's desire to feed her family stress-free dinners provisioned from an organized list without coupons, eMeals allows shoppers to spend more time at the table and less time wandering about the grocery store uttering monophonic 10th-century chants in dismay.
Camp Gladiator founder Ally Davidson?s childhood obsession with the outdoors and sports led her to pursue a degree in exercise physiology. After her 2008 win on the TV show American Gladiators, Ally decided to share her love of fitness with the world at large. Camp Gladiator reflects Ally's passion for fitness in its mission, which espouses their desire "to positively impact the physical fitness and ultimately the lives of as many people as possible." During Camp Gladiator Total Transformation, participants lose weight and gain energy in a friendly, positive environment. Over four-weeks, trainers focus on accountability, competition, motivation, and fun at multiple locations. Results are tracked during fitness assessments, body composition tests, and a fitness calendar, while nutrition counseling helps to maximize those results. Click here to view before and after images.
Davidson also leads boot camps in 13 U.S. cities, with each hosting multiple training locales. The upbeat staff of certified trainers lead patrons of all ages and fitness levels through four-week outdoor boot camps, earning Camp Gladiator a Hot Spot title from Women's Health magazine's Fitness Awards in 2013, Best Boot Camp from Rare magazine in 2010, Best of Big D 2010?2013 from D magazine, and Best Outdoor Boot Camp 2012 from Austin Fit magazine.
Amazing Kakes sugar artists Yvette Humbert and Kim Sanchez, whose creations have been featured on the Food Network and in The Knot’s Best of Weddings 2010, apply their artistry to made-to-order wedding cakes, cupcakes, and cake pops. The flavorings and fondant in their cakes hail from Switzerland, imparting a distinct European note to flavors that range in complexity from red velvet to champagne bellini. The duo's commitment to detail extends to its firm stance on only designing wedding cakes in-person, though the two have flown as far as San Francisco and the moon to construct and attend to celebratory pastries.
Humbert and her fleet of instructors share their expertise in cake-making classes, teaching students to mimic their magic in a roomy, sunlit classroom. In general classes, including topics such as how to make fondant or gum-paste flowers, bakers add new techniques to their repertoires, and during more specific classes, they learn to build cakes that resemble anything from the University of Texas at Austin tower to a high-heeled shoe. All materials are generally provided, allowing students to observe firsthand Amazing Kakes’ efforts to use exclusively sustainable and nontoxic products.