A nickel might not buy what it used to, but that doesn’t stop the folks at We B Nuts and Stuff from trying to recapture the charm of the golden age of candy stores. They satiate sweet teeth with an array of treats such as locally made chocolates, nuts and toffees, and dried fruit harvested from trees that were meticulously never watered. The team sells its confections individually or artfully assembled in gift baskets.
Ranchview Floral has been in business since 1947, assembling flower arrangements that add a touch of beauty to decades of celebrations and expressions of sympathy. The Ranchview team expertly combines roses, tulips, daisies, and orchids into creations bursting with color, from bouquets to centerpieces and corsages. Each one makes a classic and fragrant gift for special occasions or a fancy meal for a pet goat.
With a degree in fashion and a desire to carry on the name of her recently-deceased shih tzu, Tashi Tai, Christine Gregory started creating a line of fluffy dog collars and selling them under the name of her beloved pet. Over the years, with the help of her mother and a new shih tzu named Myko, Christine expanded her wholesale business into a full-fledged pet boutique and spa. It's here that she not only stocks the shelves with gourmet treats and designer apparel, but also pampers pups with spa treatments such as massage therapy, facials, and a full menu of grooming services. Dogs can even take part in half- or full-day day-play sessions, where they safely socialize and pontificate in groups separated by size and temperament. While her Queen of Paws Boutique & Spa may cater to high-class pets, Christine's heart goes out to canines of all walks of life. She takes care to donate apparel, food, and funds to shelters and rescues that help find homes for abandoned dogs.
The Learning Tree extends its wisdom-whittled branches in all directions, boasting hands-on learning tools, toys, games, and activities for kids of all ages. From art supplies and science kits to scrub-a-dub-dub bath toys for the tub, there's no shortage of interactive mind-candy worthy of mental mastication. Sharpen a young mind with school supplies such as Faber-Castell's 15 Erasable Crayons ($5.99 for a pack of 15) and the 68-piece Alex Toys Art Studio ($15.99), or let juvenile phalanges forage across a Wigglin' Water Snake ($24.99), Stomp Launcher ($14.99), or the Klutz Incredible Clay Book ($19.95). No matter what goes in the cart, all contents will tickle the minds and giggle-plexes of all their gracious recipients. Both stores are open seven days a week, come rain, shine, or brain storm.
Ten years ago you couldn't purchase Heather and Richard Garza’s homemade chocolates even if you tried. The luscious, hand-dipped confections were gifts bestowed only onto the Garzas’ closest friends and family. Those friends and family members ultimately decided they had to share their good fortune with the rest of the world, and, in 2005, convinced Heather and Richard to open up a shop and make their delectable treats for the public. Today, the Garzas put the same handcrafted touch into their chocolates as they did when they first began. They blend ganache with dark chocolates and hand form them over decadent truffles before dusting them with cocoa powders and peanut-butter drizzles. They also craft bonbons, peanut-butter balls, and maraschino-cherry creams—all hand dipped in white, dark, or milk chocolate—as well as two-tone chocolate greeting cards that are a great way to say, “I love you” or “Stop eating cardboard.”