Warrenton Lifestyle Magazine February 2019

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resty winner of warrenton’s cutest pet contest!



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PUBLISHER Dennis Brack dennis@piedmontpub.com

from the E D I T O R


ongratulations to the winners of our Cutest Pet Contest, sponsored by Piedmont Pets Veterinary Care in Warrenton. We received a lot of adorable photos from all over our area, and the amazing voter turnout of over 2500 votes shows how important pets are to people in our community. You’ve met Resty, the Fauquier winner, on the cover, and the second and third place winners are announced within our pages. Keep an eye out online this month as we share some of the staff favorites from the contest! To many of us, our pets are like our family. Why is this? I think it’s the complete trust they put in us. They love unconditionally, and, let’s face it, they’re great listeners! But pets can be mystifying at times. They need to be trained correctly to live in our world with us, and sometimes we don’t know how to do that. It’s important to understand how dogs (and cats) think and learn for us to interact with them correctly. We are fortunate at Lifestyle to have Charlotte Wagner of K9ology in Warrenton as our pet editor. She has, over the years, given our readers great advice on training and living with dogs, and has some amazing contributions to the content of this issue. She actually came up with many more ideas for articles than I could possibly fit in the magazine. Much as I love my dogs, I’m not a perfect dog trainer or owner. I’ve made mistakes with my dogs. One was not thinking to give my golden retriever puppy appropriate chew toys (I don’t know why it never occurred to me!) so he chewed...well, everything. I still have furniture bearing his teeth marks, and he actually once completely de-upholstered our sofa. Completely. Ripped the fabric on the back and sides

EDITORIAL Pam Kamphuis pam@piedmontpub.com

ART DIRECTOR Kara Thorpe kara@piedmontpub.com

ADVERTISING Sales Director: Jim Kelly jim@piedmontpub.com, 434-987-3542 Senior Account Executive: Cindy McBride cindy@piedmontpub.com, 540-229-6038 Creative Services Director: Jay Ford jayford@piedmontpub.com

ACCOUNTING Business Director: Carina Richard-Wheat accounting@piedmontpub.com, 540-905-7791

SUBSCRIPTIONS email jan@rappnews.com or call 540-675-3338

EDITORIAL & ADVERTISING OFFICE Piedmont Lifestyle Magazines 11 Culpeper Street Warrenton, Virginia 20186 540-349-2951

ON THE WEB www.PiedmontLifestyle.com Facebook: @PiedmontLifestylePublications Email Newsletter: Sign up at www.PiedmontLifestyle.com The Warrenton Lifestyle Magazine is published monthly and distributed to over 11,500 selected addresses. While reasonable care is taken with all material submitted to The Warrenton Lifestyle Magazine, the publisher cannot accept responsibility for loss or damage to any such material. Opinions expressed in articles are strictly those of the authors. While ensuring that all published information is accurate, the publisher cannot be held responsible for any mistakes or omissions. Reproduction in whole or part of any of the text, illustration or photograph is strictly forbidden. ©2019 Rappahannock Media LLC.


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right off, in addition to rendering the cushions into balls of fluff. And there’s my beloved border collie who I have failed in a couple of ways. Since we had another puppy that he played with, I never actually thought to teach him to play with people. Now, I try to play with him...but he honestly doesn’t know how. Frisbees and tennis balls mystify him, and he doesn’t tug or fetch. He is the most serious dog I’ve ever run across. I try, but I can see him looking at me with those eyes snapping with intelligence as I offer him a toy, and I feel like I can see him thinking, “Well, she’s awfully sweet, but she’s not too bright.” Also, since Riley joined four other dogs at home, I neglected to socialize him correctly with other dogs when he was a puppy. I figured, we have so many dogs that he must be socializing enough. Turns out, that’s wrong. Socializing dogs within their home pack is extremely different from socializing them with other dogs. As a result, Riley doesn’t really get along well with all other dogs. So I had problems when I tried to take him to agility classes, and dog parks are out. So I’ve made mistakes, but learned from them, and I’m sure I’ll make more mistakes with future dogs. But I love them dearly, and I hope that makes up for some of it. We’ve tried to fill this issue with information and advice that will help you make your pet’s lives, and your lives with them, easier and more fulfilling for both of you. Please love and enjoy your pets!



20 08 African American History Comes to Life at the Library BY JENNIFER SCHULTZ ANGOLI

18 Warrenton Letter Carrier Brianna Behrmann


14 Don’t Speak to Me That Way

30 Outside the Box BY CHARLOTTE HARVEY


An Anchor in Remington Since 1947; Groves Hardware

Living with Dogs and Cats Adding a pet to your household.

Effective communication



Pet Section



Psychiatric Medication for Pets?

16 Legal Considerations for Seniors BY CAROL SIMPSON


To pet or not to pet a dog you’ve just met BY CHARLOTTE HARVEY

The Great Indoors Living with Pets

Paws for Holistic Vet Care


50 BEE Welcomed

Dr. Rebecca Verna BY PAM KAMPHUIS


At the Farm Station Cafe

Wowed by Wag & Woof



A teenager’s thriving dog treat business


Euthanasia for a beloved pet

Winter Comfort Food: Chicken Pot Pie & Biscuits






Design 101


Litter box training for cats

Southern Fauquier Spotlight

Families4 Fauquier


Behind the Uniform BY PAM KAMPHUIS




44 Saying Goodbye

cover: Resty, the winner of Warrenton Lifestyle’s 2019 Cutest Pet Contest. Photo by Kara Thorpe The Lifestyle magazines are sister publications of Northern Virginia’s Leading News Source, INSIDENOVA.COM TWITTER.COM/INSIDENOVA FACEBOOK.COM/INSIDENOVA

VISIT US today for the latest news, sports and features from Fauquier, Prince William, Arlington, Fairfax, Stafford and throughout the region.

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African American History Month, also called Black History Month, is a month-long commemoration of African American history and achievement held each February. Did you know that the founder of what eventually became Black History Month was a Virginia citizen? Or that the current hit movie, Green Book has a connection to Warrenton? Readers of all ages can learn more about African American history at their local library.

Picture Books Carter Reads the Newspaper (Deborah Hopkinson, illustrated by Don Tate) honors the legacy of Carter G. Woodson, Virginia citizen, historian and son of enslaved African Americans, who established Negro History Week in 1926. The success of The Green Book movie undoubtedly introduced many to the fact that African-American


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motorists relied on The Negro Motorist Green Book to find accommodations in the Jim Crow era South. Several entries for Warrenton are included in the 1954 version of the Green Book. Ruth and the Green Book (Calvin Alexander Ramsey with Gwen Strauss, illustrated by Floyd Cooper) depicts a little girl’s experience as she and her family drive from Chicago to Alabama to visit her grandmother.



Angela Johnson is more well-known for her young adult novels, but her picture books are must reads for those seeking picture books with AfricanAmerican characters. The Sweet Smell of Roses (illustrated by Eric Velasquez) follows two sisters as they participate in a civil rights march. Chapter Books Betty Before X (Ilyasah Shabazz with Renee Watson) is a moving, heartfelt, and

sobering fictionalized account of the 1940’s Detroit childhood of Betty Shabazz, who will later marry Malcolm X. Christopher Paul Curtis has written outstanding children’s novels about the AfricanAmerican experience; Bud, Not Buddy (2000 Newbery Medal winner) remains my favorite. Curtis brings the jazz and big band era brilliantly to life in this engrossing story of a young

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boy searching for his father during the Great Depression. One Crazy Summer (2011 Newbery Honor recipient) starts Rita Williams-Garcia’s sublime Gaither Sisters trilogy as they come of age during the civil rights movement of the late 1960s/1970s. Children’s Nonfiction If you’re looking for a read aloud for Black History Month, don’t miss 28 Days: Moments in Black History That Changed the World (Charles Smith, illustrated by Shane Evans). From Crispus Attucks to Barack Obama, this is an eye-opening overview of African-American history. Let’s Clap, Jump, Sing and Shout (collected by Patricia C. McKissack, illustrated by Brian Pinkney) is a fascinating tribute to African-American spoken and written literature. Hand clap and jump rope chants, spirituals, poetry and folktales are lovingly gathered in this treasure book. One of the most original children’s nonfiction books published in 2017 was Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History (Vashti Harrison). Forty African-American women are portrayed in this fabulous volume for readers of all ages. Younger readers will enjoy Dream Big, Little One, a simplified adaptation featuring 18 women. The story of the Tuskegee Airmen pilots is one of the most inspiring in military history. You Can Fly (Carole Boston Weatherford) is a “history in verse” portrayal of the brave men who served their country during World War II. Young Adult Simone Biles is regarded as one of, if not the greatest, gymnasts of all time. Her

2016 autobiography, Courage to Soar, is a stirring read about her rocky early childhood, and her struggles and triumphs. The connection that four American presidents personally had to slavery is revealed in In the Shadow of Liberty (Kenneth C. Davis), in which five enslaved African Americans, who have been nearly lost to history, are given their due. The 1967 civil rights case that upended the Virginia law forbidding interracial marriage is uniquely told in Loving vs. Virginia (Patricia Hruby Powell, artwork by Shadra Strickland). Through documents and free verse, the persistence of the Loving family is memorably captured. Michaela DePrince has faced enormous challenges in her young life that few have faced. In her memoir, Taking Flight, she recounts her childhood in a Sierra Leone orphanage, the complexities of being raised by Caucasian parents in a majority Caucasian community, and the obstacles she faced as a rising ballerina. Historical Fiction for Adults When Cathy Williams’s world is upended during the Civil War, she disguises herself as a man and fights with the Buffalo Soldiers. Daughter of a Daughter of a

Queen (Sarah Bird) honors the little-told story of the only woman to serve with the Buffalo Soldiers. As the chef to George Washington, Hercules is admired for his cooking prowess; although he earns twice the salary of the average American and wears the best clothes, he remains enslaved in Philadelphia, where the majority of African-Americans are free citizens. Hercules’s awe-inspiring story is brought to life in The General’s Cook (Ramin Ganeshram). If you enjoy epic historical fiction spanning several histories, don’t miss Homegoing (Yaa Gyasi). Beginning with two sisters in 18th century Ghana, the parallel stories of two families living in Ghana and the United States is an engrossing and emotional story packed with unforgettable characters. The glamorous and unbelievable life of Josephine Baker is memorably told in Josephine Baker’s Last Dance (Sherry Jones). From her impoverished beginnings to her international fame as a dancer to her work in the French Resistance and civil rights movement, Baker’s larger-than-life persona makes for an enticing read. Nonfiction for Adults Tennis and human rights

icon Arthur Ashe had not received a full-length biography until last year. Arthur Ashe (Raymond Arsenault) details his Richmond childhood, his historic tennis career, and his status as an international activist. The history of AfricanAmerican pioneers is superbly told in The Bone & Sinew of the Land (Anna-Lisa Cox). Cox reveals that hundreds of African-American settlements were scattered throughout the Northwest Territory before the Civil War, and brings a more nuanced understanding of western expansion. Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom (David W. Blight) is a massive biography of the extraordinary man. Douglass’ fame as an abolitionist was only part of his life story; his complicated personal life, renewed fight during the Reconstruction Era, and conflicts with younger civil rights leaders are also intriguing aspects of his life. Essay collections are ideal for those who want something they can dip into during free moments. Well-Read Black Girl: Finding Our Stories, Discovering Ourselves (edited by Glory Edim) is a joyful and inspiring tribute to the power of finding yourself in literature, with contributions from Tayari Jones, N.K. Jemisin, Jacqueline Woodson, and many others. You can find these and many other inspiring and informative books that bring black history to life at your local Fauquier County Public Library. Visit the reference desk for suggestions or browse the online catalog at innopac. fauquiercounty.gov. ❖

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Jennifer has worked with the Fauquier County Public Library for the past 12 years. A Louisiana native married to a WVU grad, her current obsessions are her new kitchen appliances, historical fiction, football, and audiobooks for the commute up and down I-66.


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Families4Fauquier visited the Culpeper Winter Heat Shelter on January 17 with personal care items and served a taco dinner with tasty desserts.

February NEWS & EVENTS Be A Community Valentine Spirit Night Event Come eat lunch or dinner and mention Families4Fauquier Spirit Day all day Wednesday, February 6th at Foster's Grille in Warrenton. Twenty percent of food sales will be donated back to Families4Fauquier for our projects and events. We will be on site from 5:45-8:30 p.m. with supplies to make cards and crafts for our local area senior citizens. Drop off crafts and cards are also welcomed.

Generosity Feeds Warrenton Generosity Feeds is February, 23rd from 11:30 a.m.-2:00 p.m. at the Warrenton Community Center. Twenty-five percent of children in Fauquier County struggle with hunger. Join in helping pack 10,000 meals for children in our community. For additional information visit generosityfeeds. org/va/warrenton to find out how you can donate and/or register to help pack meals. This is Families4Fauquier's third year as a community sponsor.


LEGO Mania Spirit Day

Summer is right around the corner!

Join Families4Fauquier for our Annual LEGO Mania spirit day at Chick-Fil-A Warrenton on Thursday, February 28th from 6-8 p.m. There will be a Creative Creation Contest, to be judged by the ChickFil-A staff, at 8 p.m. Creations need to be made with our Legos on site and winners will receive prizes and more. Come for breakfast, lunch and dinner: F4F will receive 20 percent of sales when you mention us at the checkout all day long.

Families4Fauquier is currently collecting Summer Camp and Vacation Bible School information for our website. We will list them as they are received and promote them on our Facebook page. Get your camp submission in early for the best exposure within our community. Deadline for camp submissions is May 25, 2019. Please send camp inquiries to families4fauquier@ gmail.com.

JOIN OUR MAILING LIST OR BECOME A CHARTER MEMBER AND GET INVOLVED TODAY! Families 4 Fauquier is your link to family resources in Fauquier County and beyond. F4F is committed to strengthening and enriching the lives of children and families that live right here in our own community. For additional information about joining our membership program, receiving our monthly community newsletter or any of the events listed above please visit our website at www.families4fauquier.com or email us at info@families4fauquier.com. We now offer monthly advertising, website sponsorships and community event sponsors. If your organization has an interest in helping to support our community projects, events and programs please contact us today because together we can make a difference in little ways that can add up big!


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Effective and compassionate communication BY MICHELLE KELLEY, LCSW


ver heard the saying “Sticks and stones will break my bones but words can never hurt me”? This old phrase needs to be put to bed, because the opposite is true. As humans beings, we want to engage in meaningful conversations while expressing our feelings. If this is done through destructive language, it can be hurtful to one’s self-worth and confidence, even though it may not leave visible marks. Since judgemental words can can also damage relationships, we need to be careful how we communicate with our partners. Communicating more compassionately is a winning strategy to get our point across to others. When we communicate, try and keep the following things in mind: • Use “I” statements instead of “You” • Demonstrate compassion for your partner • Actively listen before speaking • Speak as you would like to be spoken to For example, if your partner


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begins yelling at you due to an unfortunate incident, you could say: “Shut up. You’re always yelling at me for no reason. You’re terrible!” Or you can use more positive wording such as: “It’s not okay to speak to me like that. It’s hurtful and meaningless.” This response will not only calm your partner but trigger a more understanding reply. You’re speaking your feelings without driving your partner to a “fight or flight” response. Positive and effective communication means expressing feelings and thoughts without triggering a defensive back-and-forth. It’s important to accept responsibility for our feelings and express them clearly without blaming or shaming. When we speak compassionately, we can still communicate our most difficult thoughts while acting in a caring and loving manner and expressing any discontent. Let’s review several elements that affect our communication styles: ANGER We all suffer from anger from time to time. It’s a powerful emotion. When our anger is not under control, however, it can produce arguments, altercations, physical abuse, and assault. On the



other hand, when anger is wellmanaged, it’s useful and motivates us to make positive changes. VERBAL/EMOTIONAL/ PHYSICAL ABUSE Oftentimes,

partners in close relationships experience some form of abuse, either emotional, verbal, and/or physical. Such abuse causes us to “shut-down” and isolate ourselves. There is no real communication. ARROGANCE Arrogant people hardly ever admit to their mistakes, and try to deflect attention to other people and/ or other factors. Maintain an open mind and be willing to admit your mishaps. Learn to say “thank you” and appreciate the contributions of others. DISHONESTY Honest communication is not only a crucial skill to learn, but mandatory to a healthy relationship. When you feel angry, annoyed, irritated, or disappointed, express your true feelings clearly and calmly. POSSESSIVENESS

Possessiveness can be overwhelming and create disunity among loved ones. Maintaining a healthy relationship requires both parties

to sustain their personal interests and unique characteristics while still compromising for the sake of your partner’s needs. Remember, healthy relationships require partners to give and take, with each individual having the freedom to be his/herself while sharing their lives together. LACK OF EMPATHY With empathy, we show sensitivity towards others’ feelings. When we demonstrate true understanding, our empathy assists us in communicating with our children, colleagues, friends, and partners. We can significantly improve our relationships when we communicate with compassion. Positive communication is contagious and brings out the best in us all. When we communicate positively, others are more likely to listen to us and our conversations are more meaningful. ❖

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Legal Considerations for Seniors Proper preparation can bring piece of mind BY CAROL SIMPSON


consider myself a planner. I like to know ahead of time what needs to be done this weekend, next week, even for next summer’s vacation. But when it comes to legal and financial issues that should be addressed, I, like many other Baby Boomers, procrastinate. What is it about planning for later in life that is so challenging? It’s tough to consider future illness, incapacity or death; family members can disagree with our choices; the paperwork involved can be complicated; and if we involve a professional, we assume there may be significant expense. But we’re not alone. Recent research indicates that, while recognizing that health issues and other stressful life events, such as losing a spouse, are common as we age, most older adults don’t believe these events will really happen to them and therefore don’t plan for them. I recently spoke with Rachel R. of Warrenton whose husband had “dragged her” to a lawyer years ago to complete their important legal papers. She cried throughout the appointment, wanted to leave the room several times, and agonized over every decision that needed to be made. Rachel came to realize how critical the process had been when her husband died last summer. She knew his wishes were being honored; she had peace of mind that, during her time

of grief, no major decisions needed to be made. Her children were grateful that their father had had the foresight to prepare. Hanna Rodriguez, elder law attorney with Walker Jones law firm in Warrenton, said, “It’s empowering to get your estate

plan [and associated documents] in order; to be proactive instead of reactive. If you plan when you’re healthy, you can really think through what you want and don’t want.” Some of these decisions include: who would be your best representative (Power of Attorney) if you couldn’t make decisions for yourself? Where do you want to be buried? Who would most appreciate your mother’s jewelry or your prized tools? These are typically not choices that can be pinpointed quickly. And if they’re not documented with the proper paperwork, your family can be left with uncertainty and, in many cases, end up arguing over what you would have wanted. Imagine how empowering it would be to have your estate plan in place, to rest assured that your wishes are in writing and everyone involved knows what you want. Pieces of the plan could include, but aren’t necessarily limited to: a will, durable general power of attorney, medical power of attorney, advance directives, and burial designation/disposition of remains. Depending on their situation, some individuals would benefit from creation of a trust. It’s important to consult an elder law attorney for advice, not only to ensure the right documentation but also to ask questions or recognize special circumstances that might apply to you that you might not be aware of. ❖

Helpful Resources Senior Citizens Handbook: Laws & Programs Affecting Senior Citizens in Virginia, available free of charge through the Virginia State Bar, 804-775-0500 or go to www.vsb.org. Includes information on Medicare and Medicaid, long-term care services, reverse mortgages, probate and estate administration, protection of legal rights, and much more. Piedmont Dispute Resolution Center, 540-347-6650. PDRC provides free or reduced cost mediation. Mediation is a proven process in which a neutral person facilitates communication between two or more people in disagreement. Mediation can be helpful in family and other situations in which a continued relationship is desired because mediation is designed to end with a win/win solution. All parties can then continue their relationship as all are involved in the decisions that are made. Mediation can also be helpful because it allows for details to be discussed that might otherwise be overlooked. www.betterhealthwhileaging.net, an excellent series of articles on a variety of topics including “Addressing Medical, Legal & Financial Advance Care Planning.”


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What do you like most about your job? Well, I’m definitely active! This is the only all-walking route that Warrenton has, and I do about 10 miles a day on average. I’ve worn the fitbit and counted the steps, and around Christmastime I’ll do anything from 12 -15 miles a day.


How long have you been working for the post office? What did you do before that? I’ve been working for the post office for about four years now. Before that I worked for Public Partnership LLC through the state department of medical services, taking care of an autistic patient. It was like adult day care, keeping him busy and active in his mind. After my daughter started school, I started looking to branch out. I needed something where I could grow so I could move out on my own with my daughter. I looked for something bigger and better and found the post office, which paid well, so I applied and was hired.

Behind the Uniform

Where do you live? I live just outside of Culpeper.



very morning around 10 a.m., a friendly face pops in the door at our office on Culpeper Street and inquires, “Got anything for me?” It’s Brianna Behrmann, the letter carrier from the Post Office. I’m sure that everyone else in Old Town feels the same way; she’s a breath of fresh air. Always positive and outgoing, sometimes she might chat for a second as she drops our mail and cheerfully goes along her route. Wanting to get to know her a little better, I sat down with her for an interview.


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How do you deal with the weather? I don’t mind the rain. Torrential downpours are a little different, but I don’t mind the rain. Sunshine’s great, and I don’t mind the heat because I did live in Houston for a time, so it doesn’t bother me. Snow... I’m not a big snow fan. I like looking at it, it’s pretty, but working in it — I’ll tell you what, that’s a bummer.


Do you ever encounter dogs that are not friendly? I like dogs, I like animals. I’m really happy with Warrenton, it’s so dogfriendly. The dogs like me, they come up and see me. A few of them that are at residences though, it’s not so much they’re not friendly, it’s just that it’s their territory. One dog, he listens to me, he goes and he sits and he waits while I go do the mail, but he gives every other carrier a problem. But I’ve had to spray him with my dog spray before because he wouldn’t back down. But he’s well behaved now, he’s learned.

This is the only allwalking route that Warrenton has, and I do about 10 miles a day on average.”

How to you carry all that mail? Carefully! I have my minivan that we have in town for mail delivery. The mail comes in trays in order for delivery, our magazines are in order and the letters are in order, and then there’s the parcels. I know my route well enough, I know what to grab from where, so I get my satchel, and I drive to each point and walk the section. Except for Main Street; I put that in the buggy. I’ve got a big buggy with six bags on it and I do all of Main Street in one go.

Warrenton Letter Carrier, Brianna Behrmann

Regular cold’s not so bad. I wear lots of layers. I put on about five shirts and then my double thick jacket on top of it. Once I get moving, I get warm and I start taking layers off, and people look at me like I’m crazy. But I’m hot underneath.

What do you like to do when you’re not working? I’ve done everything from taekwondo to crochet…I try lots of new hobbies all the time. I figure, I don’t know if I’m going to like something till I try it. I like outdoor sports too, like fishing, swimming, and bow hunting. I also like video games, reading, and writing. I write some poetry. I like yard work, so I’ll do that at home. I like to do a million different things. I’m a big music lover; I played the French horn for many years, and I still have it and bring it out occasionally. My daughter plays the piano, so I’d like to do a duet with her this Christmas.

Tell me about working at the Post Office. I like it. Everybody’s really friendly there. Sometimes we do some things outside of work together. During Christmastime, sometimes we’ll go get breakfast together, because we’re all there working early. There are a few retired military guys there, and since I was raised in a military family, we get along well. They have a good sense of humor. ❖

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Highlighting the people, places, and businesses in BEALETON • REMINGTON • MIDLAND • OPAL • GOLDVEIN & points between

An Anchor in Remington since 1947 Q & A W I T H PAU L G R O V E S O F G R O V E S H A R DWA R E


auquier County has its share of businesses, but there are those special ones that last through the years with stellar reputations whose business grows through word of mouth via loyal customers. Groves Hardware in Remington is such a business. This thirdgeneration family business has served the community since 1947 and has built a solid reputation for quality materials and professional, personal service. Lifestyle


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had the opportunity to sit down with Paul Groves, manager, who related the story and history of his family’s enterprise.

Tell us about Groves Hardware. We are a retail hardware and building material supplier. We provide materials to homeowners and contractors for residential, agricultural, and light commercial projects. There are some government clients; we do a lot of work with the county and the




schools locally, as well as both the state and federal governments. The majority of what we’re selling is building materials, which is the framing materials, doors, windows, drywall, roofing, and siding products. We work on a lot of agricultural projects locally, like horse barns, pole buildings, and fencing. We have a retail storefront on Main Street, and a lumber yard out back. We welcome walk-in customers, but most of our business is from products that we

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are shipping. We ship all over Northern and Central Virginia. We do the deliveries ourselves, with our own fleet of trucks.

You are a third-generation owner. Tell us about the history of the business. Groves hardware was started in 1947 by my grandfather, Ottaway. Grandad had 14 children, seven boys and seven girls, and they were pretty spread out in age. One of his older sons, Evans, started the business with him. A few years after they opened, in the late ‘50s or so, Grandad decided to retire. So another one of his sons, Billy, came into the business. So it was Evans and Billy up until the late ‘70s, early ‘80s. Evans retired, and my dad, John, joined the business. I joined the business in 1990, and Billy and my dad stayed with me until fairly recently. Billy passed away in 2010, and Dad retired a couple of years ago. So for now it’s just me.


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“There will always be that percentage that want the service, and want the quality... they know they’re not going to get the expertise at a big box store.” What is your background? I’m a Fauquier native. I was born and raised here in Remington, just two blocks away from here on Church Street. I graduated from Fauquier High School in 1985, then graduated from Virginia Tech with an electrical engineering degree in 1989.

And what is your position at Groves? I am the owner/manager, so in a small business that means you have to do a little bit of everything. About half my time is spent in



sales and estimating. I also help customers with their projects from budgeting to design and code appliance. The rest of my time involves purchasing, accounting, payroll, and the overall management of the business. When time allows, I do a little drafting for some local customers. Most of the house plans that I get need designs done for the engineered products like floor systems and roof trusses as well as the wind bracing.

Groves Hardware has grown and thrived through the years. In these days of economic ups and downs and the big box stores on every corner, how did you do that? Well, I think it’s because we appeal to a certain segment of the building materials customer base. There will always be that percentage that want the service, and want the quality. They don’t want to be a number, they don’t want to have to go into a business and try to seek out help, and they

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know they’re not going to get the expertise at a big box store that they can here at Groves Hardware. It’s also in the personal relationships. There’s a person behind the sale here. If you have a problem, you always have somebody you can reach out to and say, “this is what happened, what went wrong?”, whether it’s a product issue or an installation issue. You’ve got a personal contact and product support. And a lot of people like to shop locally at small businesses, and keep their money in the local economy. This segment of customers may not be the majority of the customer base, but it’s enough to keep us busy.

What do you think your store means to the community? Some people say that if you weren’t there there would be nothing in Remington. I do think as far as Remington is concerned, we are one of the larger businesses in town. But Remington has a lot more to offer beyond Groves Hardware. I am proud of how all our local business work together to make customers feel welcome. That’s good for first impressions, when people are looking at Remington as a potential residence, or a place for their own business. They look around and ask, what does Remington have to support a business? So we like to think we support the community by offering the convenience and the


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quality of the materials that they need to do their projects. We want to be a piece of what makes Remington a more complete residential and user-friendly town.

Is Groves Hardware still growing? We grew a lot this year, I hired four extra people in the last 12 months. So I’d say we are growing, but growing slowly. That’s kind of our plan.

Do you think you’ll outgrow your current building? Yes, I do; I don’t have enough retail square footage. More and more people people are moving into this area, more and more residences are being built within a 10 mile radius of us, so we need more square footage. I’d like to have a larger facility.

Will you stay in Remington, then? Yes, definitely.

What about future generations? Do you have anyone in the next generation that looks like they’d be interested in taking it over someday? There’s nobody right now, so I’m not sure where we’ll end up with that one. But I have nieces and nephews who have a couple youngsters, so maybe someday one of them will have an interest, but as of right now, nobody in line. ❖

special section




Resty warrenton’s cutest pet

Hailey Garner, Resty’s owner, says, “Resty is a puppy in training for Canine Companions for Independence. He is the cutest, wiggliest puppy who loves to cuddle and empty out his toy bin all over the house. As Warrenton’s Cutest Pet, Resty hopes to spread the word about puppy raising to the dog loving community.” Canine Companions for Independence is a program that provides assistance dogs for people with disabilities, offering life-changing independence for them. CCI Puppies are raised by volunteers who provide basic obedience training, socialization, and care. The dogs then move on to specialized professional training with Canine Companions instructors, and are then placed with a person in need.


PETIQUETTE manners for dogs on walks


OUTSIDE THE BOX cats and litter boxes



integrating a new family member


PSYCH MEDS FOR PETS? “Yes!” says Dr. Amy Pike



Paws for Holistic Vet Care



a local teen’s dog treat business


1st runner up:



2nd runner up:


Thank You to everyone who voted in our Cutest Pet Contest, and to our contest sponsor, Piedmont Pets.



PETS IN THE HOME design tips for pet owners



Charlotte Harvey, BSc owns and operates K9ology LLC in Warrenton where she teaches group and private training classes for pet, competition, and working dogs. She holds a Bachelors of Science with honors in Animal Management from the University of Essex with a special interest in behavior. She regularly competes with her furry family members in breed confirmation, tricks, obedience, rally, and dock diving events.


A 2003 graduate of Colorado State University School of Veterinary Medicine and a former captain in the US Army Veterinary Corps, Dr. Pike completed a residency program in behavior medicine in 2015 and today is chief of the Behavior Medicine Division at the Veterinary Referral Center of Northern Virginia in Manassas.


Making an appearance in our pet section this month to offer interior design expertise to pet owners is Yaron Linett, principal designer of Formal Traditional, a full-service design firm located in Warrenton. To submit your interior design questions, drop him a note at yaron@ formaltraditional.com or visit www.formaltraditional.com.



To pet or not to pet a dog you’ve just met BY CHARLOTTE HARVEY


roper etiquette around dogs has been seriously lacking in modern society. Sure, we see puppies being cradled by eager owners as they browse the pet store, dogs in strollers coming down the greenway, and others in holiday attire walking the neighborhood. It’s tempting to approach the dog, but what is the right way? How do we know it’s safe to do so? At what point does an encounter impose too much on the dog and owner?


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Mind your manners

Before engaging with a dog, even if you know them, it is vital to first stop at a socially acceptable distance, ask if you may pet the dog, and then wait for the owner to give further instructions. If you’re lucky, you will be greeted with a “sure,” or “go right ahead.” In this case, you are welcome to approach the dog.

Body language goes a long way

Did you know, the wrong way to engage with a dog is by extending your hand, reaching over them, and petting their head? Many dogs consider this a space violation and may even feel entrapped. The correct way to greet a dog is to:



• Allow the dog to approach you • Stand sideways or crouch towards the ground (don’t hover over the dog) • Lower your hand at your side, so the dog can initiate contact by coming towards you • Touch the dog below the chin, working your way along the bottom of the neck and ending up on the side, back, or rear of the dog This approach gives the dog multiple opportunities to deny contact without threat, and it gives you a chance to assess whether or not the dog wants to be petted. Consent goes both ways! Not sure how to read the dog’s body language? A few clues to determine if a

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Do not condone unwanted behavior by saying, “It’s ok, I have a dog.” If you are genuinely invested in the interaction, please wait for the owner to give greeting instructions.

Dog-dog greeting etiquette

dog isn’t feeling comfortable or is feeling like they need space include: turning their head and/or body away from you, ears back, lip licking, hard stare, hackles up, low body posture, whale eye (whites of eyes showing), freezing, and general avoidance. If a dog is not eager to interact, do not force the issue! Respect the dog's space and move on. A dog that welcomes attention and engagement will eagerly approach the stranger, wag their tail in a level position (tail up, or tucked under is an issue!), have a relaxed posture and soft expression, offer eye contact, be wiggly or free moving, have relaxed ears, and most importantly, they will come back for more affection if the attention is interrupted or paused. Keep in mind that not every dog enjoys the company of a stranger. Even if you have had dogs all your life and are used to them, you need to realize that some dogs may be wary of other people, some may feel threatened in the presence of other dogs, and others simply do not have enough impulse control (yet) to be greeting strangers. It is important we respect the owner’s wishes if we hear a “No, thank you” to a request for interaction, or if someone kindly requests that you ignore the dog, the polite thing to say is “thanks anyway” and be on your merry way.


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“You may want to carefully consider your socialization environment if your dog is wary of strangers, does not have social skills around other canines, or is eagerly distracted by the environment.” Dogs need manners too!

In an ideal world, owners would ask their dogs to “sit” as a stranger approaches, “stay” upon their arrival, and “check in” (establish eye contact with their owner) before being released to a greeting. This is extremely hard to do when strangers eagerly approach the dog without respecting the owner’s training plan. As you greet a dog, please let the owner control their own pet. Many well-meaning visitors try to blurt out commands in an attempt to help, however this can severely confuse the dog. If the owner requests that the dog not jump up on you, then please be mindful of this request.



Most issues between dogs happen due to frustration, over-stimulation, and an inability to escape during confrontation. This is partially due to a lack of impulse control, poor training, and over-socialization. Yes, I said it, over-socialization. Puppies who get to play on leash simply expect to keep playing while they’re on the leash when they’re adults. These situations can be challenging for owners to handle as the dog matures because the dog also learns to ignore their owner in the presence of another dog. An appropriate greeting would mean two dogs approach on a loose leash, sniff for 2-3 seconds, and then be redirected by their owner saying, “Let’s go, this way” in order to redirect focus on the human. You can attempt multiple little 2-3 second greetings, or choose to put the dog in the “stay” position when speaking with the other owner. Do not let dogs play while on the leash; play time is for when they are off-leash and can move freely and further explore behavior.

Not all dogs are the same

It is the responsibility of the owner to set the dog up for success rather than failure. This is easier said than done in some situations. You may want to carefully consider your socialization environment if your dog is wary of strangers, does not have social skills around other canines, or is eagerly distracted by the environment. In some cases, dogs are tolerant of situations without eagerness to engage with other people or dogs. If you need help with impulse control, good manners, fear of strangers, or dog reactivity, consult with a certified trainer or behaviorist for further assistance. ❖





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oes your cat not use his litter box? Does he “go” all over the house? This problem is one of the major reasons owners relinquish pet cats to a shelter or rescue. Poor bathroom etiquette within the home can be hard to live with: the smell, the constant cleaning, ruined furniture, and the cost of replacing soiled items are all difficult and costly. Feline elimination issues are not uncommon, but the causes — and solutions — are sometimes difficult to determine. In this article we will consider the possibilities for the cause of the behaviour and feasible remedies.

medical examination When faced with inconsistent litter box use, the first step is to consult your veterinarian. There are multiple illnesses prevalent in cats that can lead to inappropriate elimination behaviors. Some of the more common conditions include urinary tract infections, feline lower urinary tract disease, crystals in the urine, bladder stones, inflammation of the bowels, kidney disease, diabetes, and thyroid issues. In some cases, serious blockages in the digestive tract may cause discomfort and abnormal toileting habits. A visit to your veterinarian can rule out or treat medical causes of your cat’s behaviour.

location preference Some felines are extremely picky when it comes to the location of their litter box. Cats that soil in a specific location or outside of the box most likely have an issue with placement. Try putting the litter box away

from high traffic areas and try locating it in different places within the home to see if there is a difference. Ask yourself: is the box conveniently located? Is it private? Is it too close to feeding and water areas? Cats will avoid soiling where they eat and drink, while others will skip the litter box if it is not easily accessible. Ideally, have one accessible litter box on each floor of a multi-level house.

litter material preference Cats can have individual preferences as to the type, size, and condition of litter within the box. There are many varieties on the market, making it hard to sometimes choose the right litter. The use of fragrant material may be pleasing to humans but unattractive to some of our feline friends. Also, daily cleaning and maintenance will encourage your cat to use the box successfully; they usually don’t want to use a pan filled with days’ worth of urine and feces. Also consider litter depth when maintaining your pan as cats naturally like to bury and hide their excretions, which is not possible when there is not enough litter in the box. For some cats the use of liners complicates using the box, causing them to avoid it.

box preference In some cases the size, construction, or shape of the litter box is unappealing to the cat. Some adapt well to enclosed dome shapes, whereas others prefer open

containers. Some cats prefer larger litter boxes. If your cat is eliminating on a variety of surfaces away from the litter box, it may have a preference for style.

adequate number of litter boxes In multi-pet households, stress can be induced through bullying behavior and other cats may block access to the litter box. Ensure enough boxes are available in a multi-cat household: one for each cat in the home, plus one more.

stress induced problems Various lifestyle changes can dramatically impact your cat’s toileting habits. A recent move, the addition of another pet, a change in family dynamic, and variation in routine can all contribute to stress. Tension can also exist if feral cats are in your neighborhood causing territorial rivalry. Eliminate or mitigate the stress if you can, and wait for your cat to adjust to its new routine and surroundings.

spraying behavior Many house soiling complaints are related to spraying or urine marking. This is not commonly a cause for elimination issues outside of the litter box and is most often associated with sexual behavior. Tomcats are generally the main culprits and will target vertical surfaces to spread their scent. Further reasons for spraying include learned aversion, territorial disputes, and anxiety.

If your cat is having toileting issues, consult with a certified animal behaviorist or veterinary behaviorist to discuss modification and treatment options. In mild cases where occasional incidents occur, good household management, change in litter box care, and adapting to cat preferences can go a long way. In more extreme cases where medical conditions have been ruled out and management has been unsuccessful, pharmaceutical support may be required alongside behavior modification. ❖

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living with dogs and cats What to know when combining felines and canines in your household


hinking of adding a feline companion to your household where your dog reigns supreme? What about adding a canine when your cat already rules the roost? Taking each pet’s individual characteristics, personality traits, needs, and behaviors into consideration can help establish a harmonious household. IF YOU’RE INTRODUCING A DOG INTO A CAT HOUSEHOLD When a new dog is introduced to the house, your cat may become territorial. Some cats might become reclusive and avoid interaction, some exhibit destructive behavior like eliminating outside the litter box, and others show signs of stress


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by increased vocalization or a lack of appetite. Some might scratch or bite your new dog. Kittens are very impressionable at an early age and might accept a new friend easily, whereas adult cats find it more challenging to adapt to change. IF YOU’RE INTRODUCING A CAT INTO A DOG HOUSEHOLD Dogs like to chase things, it’s in their genetic makeup. Your dog will be extremely curious about a new



cat, and will try to investigate him, by chasing him if necessary. It may be a game to your dog, and he may mean no harm, but to your new cat, who is trying to adjust to a new home, this can be pretty taxing. This can result in your cat hiding out and exhibiting antisocial behavior. Consider adopting a cat who has prior experience with dogs who won’t be so intimidated. Dogs who are under socialized to cats, or are of the hound, terrier, or sporting variety can have a high prey drive and may try to chase or kill a new cat. These dogs are not bad; they simply are genetically wired to pursue small animals as part of their DNA. Some puppies can be socialized to cats when they are 4-16 weeks of age, but not all are good candidates to live

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with cats. Make sure you know your dog before considering if a cat is a good fit. With any dog, make sure your dog has learned a very solid “leave it” command so you can discourage him from the chase. HOUSEHOLD INTEGRATION Taking your time and allowing your pets to slowly integrate will set the stage for a peaceful life together. Cats and dogs each have their own unique way of wearing their hearts on their sleeve; learn how to read speciesspecific body language to better read your pet’s mood during this introductory period so you can better manage their interactions. HERE ARE A FEW TACTICS WHEN INTEGRATING PETS: Be especially careful to allow a new cat to become accustomed to an area of the home before introducing the household dog. Give them their own space. At first, allow the dog and cat to hear and smell one another, without direct physical contact. You may want to keep your cat in a separate room or crate your dog, or confine the cat when the dog is free roam to the house. Shutting your cat in a bathroom, laundry room, or basement (with water and a litter box) can allow them to decompress and prevent stress when you are unable to work on household integration. Some households may have access to the basement with a cat door, whereas others use baby gates to create a safe space. Allow both animals to explore the areas where the other has been. This may mean giving your cat free range of the house when the dog is out for a walk, or giving the dog the run of the cat’s area while the cat is isolated in another part of the house. Giving


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“women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea.” — Robert A. Heinlein

pets a chance to sniff without direct contact can satisfy their curiosity and prevent over-stimulation later. Once the animals have become used to the sound and smell of one another, allow them to interact more directly but be sure to still keep control with the use of a leash or baby gate to separate them. During this stage it is extremely important to not allow the dog to chase the cat, which will result in the cat becoming scared and fleeing the scene. Ensure the animals are truly relaxed around one another before removing any barriers. Use mealtime as a way to structure interactions. Consider giving your dog



a food dispensing toy, and feeding your cat safely within proximity of your pup at the same time. When feeding your pets together, as they are concentrating on their food, their interactions will remain low key, and it will help establish positive associations around one another. GIVE YOUR DOG PHYSICAL AND MENTAL OUTLETS A dog who does not receive enough physical exercise or mental stimulation will find ways to entertain itself elsewhere. Some dogs are high energy, others are high drive, and some may resort to chasing or tackling the cat as a way to overcome boredom. Over time, this type of behavior will become a self-reinforcing habit which is hard to break. Make sure your dog is getting daily physical exercise and has multiple outlets to tire out its brain to prevent boredom chasing. Obedience or tricks training, feeding meals through food dispensing toys, food puzzles, engaging in new sports, and adventuring in new environments can significantly increase your pet’s mental health. GIVE YOUR CAT A BREAK Cats like enclosed spaces; they make them feel safe and secure. So be sure your cat has some hidey-holes where the dog cannot reach them. Whether you are bringing home a new dog or cat - take your time and allow the new pet to adapt. Supervising interactions, rewarding good behavior, and instilling smart management within the home will help ensure a smooth transition. Some cats and dogs become the best of friends, but if not, they will at least learn to coexist together peacefully in most cases. ❖

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mental health

Psychiatric medication for pets? Absolutely! are to decrease the intensity of the targeted behavior, the he use of psychotropic frequency of the targeted medication for pets with behavior, and increase the behavioral disorders is often a pet’s ability to recover after a key component for a successful triggering incident. Medications behavior modification plan. decrease the fear, anxiety According to data published and stress that are driving the by the Centers for Disease targeted behavior. In addition, a Control, between 2011 and huge part of that is to decrease 2014 one in nine Americans the hyperarousal that is reported having taken at least preventing learning from taking one antidepressant medication place. No mammal, including in the past month. That number humans, can learn new skills or is significantly increased from coping mechanisms when they the 1980’s when only about are worried, stressed or in “fight one in 50 people did. The or flight” mode. Think of it as rise of medication usage and trying to learn how to speak a the normalization of pursuing new language immediately after psychotherapy in people has finding out a family member also led to the same trend in passed away- you simply can’t. veterinary medicine, much to In general, there are the benefit of our patients. two broad categories of The goal of psychotropic medication – psychopharmacology is not daily and situational. to sedate the pet or make Daily medications are them a “zombie,” a concern I those that must be given hear commonly from owners on a daily basis and may who are hesitant about the take weeks to see full use of medication. The goals effect from. Tricyclic BY DR. AMY PIKE



{ FEBRUARY 2019 |



antidepressants (TCAs) such as Elavil ® (generic nameamitriptyline) and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as Prozac ® (generic name- fluoxetine) fall into this category. Situational medications are those that can be given prior to known stressors such as visitors, storms, fireworks, or travel. These medications may take several hours to see full effect from and may need to be redosed as needed. Desyrel ® (generic name- trazodone) and Xanax ® (generic name- alprazolam) fall into this category. At present, there are only five FDA approved medications for our veterinary patients. The approved daily medications are Clomicalm® (Novartis) and Reconcile® (PRN™ Pharmacal) for separation anxiety in dogs, and Anipryl® (Zoetis) for cognitive dysfunction. The most recent additions to the market are the situational medications Sileo® (Zoetis) and Pexion® (not yet commercially available) by Boehringer Ingelheim for storm and noise phobias. However, as veterinarians, we commonly use medications approved for human use in an “off-label” fashion for our patients and this is no different within veterinary behavior medicine. Veterinary behaviorists commonly prescribe well-known human medications to our patients such as Zoloft® (generic namesertraline), Effexor® (genericvenlafaxine), Lexapro® (genericescitalopram), Neurontin® (generic- gabapentin), and Lyrica® (generic- pregabalin), just to name a few. There are numerous behavioral disorders of cats and dogs that can benefit from psychotropic medication, including (but definitely not limited to) separation anxiety,

aggression, compulsive disorders (spinning, tail chasing, light/shadow pouncing, etc), urinating and defecating outside of the litter box, impulse control disorders, storm and fireworks phobias, and cognitive decline as pets age (similar to human dementia). It is important to remember that psychotropic medications are not a magic wand. They will not completely eliminate a behavior, nor will they cause your pet’s personality to completely change. They are an adjunct to appropriate positivereinforcement based behavior modification to teach the pet alternate behaviors or coping skills during stressful situations. If your pet is suffering from a behavioral disorder (no matter how mild), how should you go about getting treatment? First and foremost, speak with your veterinarian. There may be a medical component to the behavior and this must be ruled out and treated prior to pursuing behavioral interventions. Next, stop using any sort of punishment techniques or tools (scolding, spanking, shock collars, prong collars, etc.) as these have been scientifically proven to increase fear and anxiety and will ultimately worsen the disorder. Next, ask your veterinarian about a referral to a veterinary behaviorist. A veterinary behaviorist can determine if medication is appropriate for your pet and will develop and coach you on how to implement a training and behavior modification plan. Appropriately treating your pet’s behavioral disorder using humane training and, if necessary, psychotropic medication, will help your pet, and you, live the best lives possible, together. ❖

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holistic pet care

Paws for Holistic Pet Care Holistic veterinary practice in Marshall takes a whole-body approach to pet care



alking into Dr. Rebecca Verna’s Paws for Holistic Pet Care office is like walking into her living room. It’s a big, open, light space, with futons and sofas, and a couple Yellow Naped Amazon parrots and African Grey parrots in big, comfy cages. These, Verna says, are her roommates; her practice is mostly treating dogs and cats, although she does treat the occasional exotic and some rabbits. It’s a warm and welcoming place, there are no cold exam tables; patients are examined and treated on the futons or wherever they feel most comfortable, and house calls are also available. It’s all about making the patient comfortable. Verna has a long list of abbreviations after her name, in addition to the DVM which she received at Virginia Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine at Virginia Tech. Her interests go far beyond conventional veterinary medicine. Verna says, “Soon I’ll have too many letters to fit on my card, which was not the goal…the goal was to keep learning. I enjoy it! Right now I’m involved in the tail end of another Master’s Degree. I just love to learn.” Verna’s additional skills include certification in veterinary Chinese herbology, canine rehabilitation, Chinese veterinary food therapy, Chinese massage, animal chiropractics, veterinary acupuncture, rehabilitative and physical therapy for animals, Chinese herbology, Ayurvedic herbology, the use of Western herbs, homeopathic medicines, flower essences and essential oils, magnetic therapy, reiki and other forms of energy medicine, applied


{ FEBRUARY 2019 |

kinesiology, traditional Chinese medicine, food therapy for animals, and nutrition. Dr. Verna knew at a very young age that she wanted to be a vet, that there was no other profession for her. It started when she was about seven, with her family’s pet guinea pigs. “When I was really little we had guinea pigs and mine got sick a lot. So we took them to the vet often. Finally, we had one that had an infection, and they had just come out with tetracycline that you could dissolve in water. So I administered the antibiotics by eyedropper to the guinea pig and it got well.



And that was it. It was like…a miracle. I was hooked. I decided then and there that I was going to be a vet. After vet school, before my first job, I was worried…I had never wanted to be anything but a vet, and I thought, what if I don’t like it? There’s nothing else I ever wanted to do. But it was even better than I thought it would be, it was so much fun. It is the greatest, most fulfilling career on the planet, and I couldn’t be luckier.” After working for various veterinary practices and as a relief vet, Verna opened Healthy Paws Medical Center in


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Haymarket, which she owned for 18 years. It was a huge practice with 35 employees. But, she says, “After some time, it was just too much. I didn’t get a chance to be the doctor, I just got to manage people and train people and meet with managers. I wanted to be with the animals, to be a vet. So I sold it to VCA, which is a big veterinary corporation. Verna started Paws for Holistic Pet Care in Marshall six years ago. “I knew that people were clamoring for holistic, for rehabilitation, for physical therapy for their pets, and for treatment of cancer and back pain,” she said. While Verna clearly has a significant amount of holistic skills, she doesn’t dismiss conventional veterinary medicine. “Technically, I consider myself an integrative vet, meaning I practice conventional medicine as well as holistic. The two are complementary, really. Yes, I’m a vet, and I keep up with all the advancements in conventional veterinary medicine and the new drugs, but I also have a lot of additional training, I know this whole new, additional way of looking at things. We do a lot of talking when people bring their pets in, because I really need to get to know the person and their fur baby and their lifestyle to figure out exactly what their needs are. The main thing people need to know is that if you’re taking a holistic approach it’s not a one-stop-shop, one-day thing, it takes follow up.” At Verna’s practice, which doesn’t offer surgery, anesthesia, or ultrasound, she focuses on whole body medicine. “I look at nutrition and physical structure and the animal’s lifestyle and environment.


{ FEBRUARY 2019 |

“I consider myself an integrative vet, meaning I practice conventional medicine as well as holistic. The two are complementary, really.”

Prevention, says Verna, is the key to avoiding most animal illnesses. She explains, “Eighty-five percent of dogs are dying of cancer. A lot of them are young. Some of it’s from breeding, but most of it’s from pesticides and herbicides, bad water, bad air, and I’m not even going to discuss the quality of most pet foods.” “If it’s an older animal or one that’s sick or got cancer, then I’m really the place to go because we can really offer the best of both worlds. I’m pretty good at being able to help people decide, based on the owner



and their dog and their individual personality and their lifestyle, whether surgery is going to be the best option for their pet. Or should they do chemotherapy, or just herbs, or both? I won’t discourage anyone from going with chemotherapy. I can give you facts about these conventional procedures, like surgery and chemo, but also give you holistic therapy suggestions which can be used alone or in conjunction with other treatments. Acupuncture is amazing, you can actually get animals to significantly recover from kidney disease, allergies, and cancer. I’m not claiming to cure cancer, but I have had a lot of success with patients who live literally years beyond expectation with a good quality of life, which is the key. I help people figure out what is going to be most useful and really make a difference, and like I said, we’re going for quality of life, and quantity of life as long as it’s a good life.” “My biggest regret is that I don’t get the animals until they’re sick. Really, what I do should be for the well pet. Start with a puppy or kitten, feed them right, make sure they get enough exercise, make sure they get enough good, fresh air, make sure they have access to a healthy outdoor environment where they’re not spraying pesticides and herbicides and things like that. It can double their life. Let’s skip the cancer. I encourage people to come in before there’s something wrong. I think I could make a big difference in the lives of every pet if I could see them young, see them before people realize they have a problem. Every now and then I get lucky: I probably see about 10 new puppies a year, and 3-4 new kittens, and I can get them started off on a good life.” ❖


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for the love of dogs

Wowed by Wag & Woof How a middle school girl’s ambition led to a thriving small business STORY BY WILL SCARING PHOTOS BY KARA THORPE


here are a lot of small businesses in Northern Virginia, but very few can claim that their founder began their enterprise before they started high school. And yet, that’s exactly what Dezi Rebelo of Haymarket set out to do. Her small business, Wag and Woof, makes homemade, organic dog treats that are designed to be not only delicious for any dogs in the house, but also completely free of chemicals and other preservatives commonly found in store-brand pet snacks. At the moment, Dezi lives out her childhood like almost any other pre-teen in the area. She goes to school, goes out for skating practice—she performs on a synchronized skating team—and goes home to play with her dog Baxter, a dachshund. This picture is practically identical to Dezi’s life approximately one year ago. But now, she makes time once a month to bake Wag and Woof’s dog treats. Dezi’s original motivation for the business is almost too simple to be believed: “I wanted an iPhone.” However, rather than buy the phone outright for her, Dezi’s mother Barbi, who has a background in sales, encouraged her to raise the money for the device herself. Dezi took that advice to heart, and started brainstorming ideas to raise money. What she came up with was a product that, at the time, neither she nor her mother would realize the potential of. At first this business started only as a hobby. Dezi regularly baked homemade treats for Baxter, but then realized she could make a profit out of it after she started selling them to friends and neighbors. After sales finished at her first Young Entrepreneur fair, Dezi and her mother both were surprised but delighted when Dezi came home a whopping $600 richer. Since that time, Dezi has been working to make sure


{ FEBRUARY 2019 |

that her hobby-turned-business continues to grow, one month at a time. She’s tracked down a local business mentor in the form of Meighan O’Toole from Stuff! Consignments, and she’s begun shipping her treats across state lines, even going out as far as Ohio for some customers. The treats have been a smash hit with the local area, to the point that Dezi and her mother decided to set up a Facebook page to better communicate with their many customers. There, Dezi and her mom hold a new contest every month among their followers. “During October we had a costume contest, and the winner won a free bag of our biggest dog treats,” Barbi mentioned with a chuckle. If the reviews are anything to go by, Dezi should be staying in business for some time. The only tricky part to these treats is their shelf life: because there are absolutely no preservatives used, they must be used within three weeks of their baking, and they must be kept refrigerated when stored. However, make no mistake: despite their limited shelf life, there’s a lot of work and time that goes into planning for these treats. Because sales only happen once a month at the moment, the recipe changes every sale period in order to keep things fresh and exciting for customers. Previous flavors have included



Pumpkin for October, Apple Bacon for December, and Sweet Potato for January. When asked about the cooking process, the mother-daughter duo was hesitant to share any information about the secret recipe they use to make their special dog treats, but when asked if there was any ingredient that she always uses, Dezi whispered excitedly, “Bone broth!” Apparently, every dog treat mixture gets a small dose of bone broth in every recipe—no wonder their customers, both human and canine, love them. When asked about ideas for the future, both for her business and for herself, Dezi’s next goal is similar to her original one: she wants a Jeep next, and is thinking about slapping her small company’s signature logo on the side for everyone to see. She already hands out free samples to any dog owner she passes by on the road with her mom to drum up visibility, so getting an official company car sounds like a great next step. While she wants to grow up to be a zookeeper and work with animals every day, she does have another very ambitious goal to hit in the hopefully near future: “I want to go on Shark Tank and pitch my business there,” she said. With such big goals in mind for the next few years, it’s hard to imagine that Dezi’s future is anything but bright, as is that of Wag and Woof. ❖

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end of life

saying goodbye euthanasia for a beloved pet


finding the right time

Euthanasia is a difficult subject to talk about. It’s sad, frightening, and extremely personal. However, in light of all the darkness, it is the last gift we can give a sick or dying pet. We hope you find some ease by understanding how to prepare and what to expect throughout the process.

Not sure when it’s time to say goodbye? Choosing the right time to euthanize your pet is not the same for everyone. Some owners make the decision based on symptoms of illness and others make choices based on quality


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ritual or spiritual — this is your goodbye of life. Is your pet not eating or drinking? Having difficulty with mobility? Unable to go to the bathroom? Acting listless, depressed, or lethargic? Is your pet in continuous pain? Any of those criteria may make you question your pet’s quality of life. For some owners, it’s a matter of time before making a decision. For others, the right time is when any of those elements impede further enjoyment of life. Regardless of your reasoning, it is your decision to make with your family, and it’s nobody’s job to judge or criticize you. With that said, it is also not your job to judge and criticize yourself either. Many owners have fears and doubts. If so, have a conversation with your veterinarian: their job is in the interest of your pet’s welfare too. Sometimes it helps to get input from the outside to help make a decision. When the time comes let it be peaceful, let it be with love and affection, and let it be a blessing.

coordinate with your vet If circumstances allow, touch base with your vet and schedule an appointment. Even in emergency situations, be sure to let the clinic know that you are coming. By preparing them for your arrival, the vet staff will be able to better minimize stress and prevent needless waiting in the lobby. Most clinics will either have a dedicated grieving room accessible or may prepare an exam room for you to comfort your pet during the visit. Please note that some veterinary clinics offer house calls. It is worth inquiring with your vet whether or not they would be able to come to your home, rather than making an appointment at the clinic.


{ FEBRUARY 2019 |

Before euthanasia make sure you limit stress and provide comfort to your pet. Be prepared. Bring a blanket, a favorite toy, some super tasty treats, or even chocolate cake for the occasion! (Yes, my first dog Riley did depart eating a 3 layer Pepperidge Farm chocolate cake, and he loved every second of it). We encourage owners to keep everything as normal as possible, so consider waiting to remove any collars until afterward. If you need to, call your family, gather around, hug each other, talk to one another, and support each other. Losing a beloved family pet can be as emotionally challenging to navigate as the loss of a human companion. Take time to grieve.

the procedure It is becoming standard for veterinarians to use a sedative before administering the euthanasia injection. This is to ensure that the animal will gently drift into sleep during the process. Without a tranquilizer your pet may show some startling and alarming symptoms during the process, and that’s not something owners are eager to experience. In an ideal world, the veterinarian would administer a sedative, and then shortly later the euthanasia injection (some administer it together). In most cases, both drugs are given via the veins. Some owners choose to stay for the whole procedure, whereas others opt to stay for sedation only. That is really your choice, and it’s an individual one to make. But please don’t drop your pet off at the vet and leave him alone for these important last minutes of his life. It can be frightening for them, and your presence will greatly comfort them. As your pet departs, the vet may use a stethoscope to confirm that your pet has passed. Both the



euthanasia procedure and diagnosis should only be done by a certified and licensed veterinarian.

choose beforehand There are many options regarding what to do once your pet has passed. Many owners opt for cremation, some choose a pet cemetery (yes, that does exist), whereas others choose to take their pet home for burial. Even this decision is best made beforehand. Once the time has come to say goodbye, you will be faced with shock, grief, and feel overwhelmed.

making payment Since euthanasia is a veterinary procure, there will be a bill incurred with the service. Most veterinary clinics require payment when services are rendered. We suggest you pay the bill upon arrival so you don’t have to worry about it while you are newly grieving. It is becoming increasingly rare for clinics to send an invoice in the mail, however some clinics still provide this option. Make sure you decide on how to pay and when before you enter the building.

thinking of what to do next? Take your time removing personal pet items. Drastic change is hard on everyone. Some owners find comfort in welcoming a new pet into the household, others take their time. If a new pet is your next venture, keep in mind that dogs are individuals. Even if you get a dog of the same breed, color, and gender, they will still come with their own personalities and traits. Be emotionally prepared to work through raising a new puppy or welcoming a new dog home. ❖


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la BOutique Fantasque (the Magic tOyshOp)

FOur cOnteMpOrary preMieres

March 8-10, 2019

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• www.hyltoncenter.org • 703-993-7759

manassasballet.org Manassas Ballet Theatre is funded in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Virginia Commission for the Arts, Prince William County, and the City of Manassas

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home DESIGN 101:

The Great Indoors: Living With Pets BY YARON LINETT

“How do I make my home pet-friendly?” “Help! I’m running out of storage space.” Interior designers deal with these and many other questions every day. For the purposes of this article, we’re tackling the first one. “How do I make my home pet-friendly...”

“Do they make clear wallpaper? Our Great Pyrenees spatters mud three feet up!” Before you resort to laminating your walls, look into commercial grade vinyl wallpaper. It’s super durable and can be scrubbed, and there are plenty of very affordable options. Plus, at 54” wide, it requires fewer pieces to cover the same amount of wall saving considerably on labor. When prepping the wall, paint stripes of color matching the predominant color of the wallpaper. Should the seams gap a little, you’ll be glad you did. PRO TIP

HOW DO I GET RID OF THAT SMELL? “The carpet in our new house is thoroughly soiled and our pets are reacting. What should we do?” Our pets’ noses are much more sensitive than ours, and

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“We allow our pets on the furniture, what is the best fabric choice?” That depends on what kind of pets you have and what they do to your furniture. Shedding? Slick nylon blankets allow fur to be shaken off seconds before guests arrive. Cats kneading? Individual cats like different things, but a highquality synthetic suede (88% polyester,12% polyurethane) is among the most resilient and statistically least attractive (to the cat) option. General soil and stain? There are a range of performance fabrics that feel and look great. Crypton, a particularly popular brand of fabric, even brings rescue dogs in to demonstrate how pet friendly its product is. Avoid using Scotchgard. Its older formulation was banned, and most people don’t know the new one only lasts six months and must be reapplied outdoors. PRO TIP




even if you can’t smell anything after cleaning, they can. The best way to keep them from re-marking is to remove all the carpet and padding. When you’re down to the subfloor, seal it with a shellac-based primer. Use the real stuff not synthetic. Once it dries, lay down new carpet. Don’t forget to treat walls and doors that have been marked as well. Once your pets can’t smell the prior animals’ handiwork, their incentive to replace the smell will be gone. You must have PRO adequate ventilation TIP and should wear a respirator when working with a shellac primer. Additionally, do not allow any flame or potential source of ignition. This stuff is no joke.



WHAT ABOUT A NEW FLOOR? “What flooring should we consider that resists claw marks as well as pet stains?” While porcelain or other tile is the traditional solution, we recommend luxury vinyl tile or plank (LVT). Both budget friendly and with many attractive options, LVT is impervious to liquid and solid accidents and holds up very well against even large canine claws. Getting one with more texture not only helps make it feel more like wood, but aids with traction. LVT tends to be much lower in volatile organic compounds (VOCs) than laminate flooring; however still insist on a low or no VOC product. PRO TIP

WHAT ABOUT RUGS? “My pets mark every soft surface. I can’t constantly clean my rugs.” We recently had a client with a dog and two children where a traditional rug was not feasible. We sourced a vinyl floor cloth (very low VOC) rather than a traditional rug for the dining room. This gave the client the color and pattern desired on the floor and the dog, the kids and even the robotic vacuum can all live with it in harmony. We had to rescue that robotic vacuum one day from a blanket with a long fringe border. Before buying your own robotic housekeeper, you might want to consider what could have happened if that fringe had been attached to an antique Persian rug. ❖ PRO TIP

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welcomed At Vint Hill’s Farm Station Cafe STORY BY HANNAH SAMLALL | PHOTOS BY KARA THORPE

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP, LEFT: The Drone Bee Burger; blue cheese, chilihoney cured bacon, and onion jam on a toasted English muffin served with house cut chips. Farm Station Cafe is located in the heart of Vint Hill, next to Old Bust Head Brewery. Jumbo shrimp and avocado with candied kumquat, radish sprouts, and eel sauce. Salmon, mango and avocado salad with pickled vegetables, crispy chickpeas and herb vinaigrette.

alking into Farm Station Cafe in the up and coming Vint Hill area for the first time felt a little bit like coming home. With the warm lighting and staff’s cheery faces, it would be difficult to not feel comfortable there. Owner Karen Baker and renowned Chef Matt Mize are the dynamic duo responsible for the delicious flavors and family atmosphere you can expect to experience when coming through their doors. Farm Station Cafe is an addition and supplement to Baker’s existing catering business which she opened in 1999, À la Carte Catering + Event Design. À la Carte prides itself on offering full catering and event support for events for 50 to 5,000 people, all while keeping things local and choosing the best and freshest ingredients from the region. In late 2016, they outgrew their kitchen in Haymarket and needed to find a larger space. Enter an old Vint Hill warehouse. Once they saw the space and the location, they were quick to move in and reopen the catering kitchen. The possibilities for the space were endless and thus, the idea to open the cafe in addition to the catering kitchen was born. Baker and Mize both recognized the potential for a cafe that was not only fast and fresh but also friendly and community-oriented. “We felt like Fauquier was ready for this cafe,” Baker said. “We wanted to cater to the

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community. We want customers to come and relax and make friends here.” The cafe opened in mid-August last summer and offers a little bit of everything, from farm fresh breakfasts to salads to burgers and sandwiches to ready-to-eat dinners. For those dining in, they also offer beer and wine. The cafe’s logo is a bee, signifying their commitment to local, sustainable food. Baker said, “I knew I wanted our logo to involve some animal or insect that had to do with our food supply. We wanted to bring a little awareness of the importance of bees. Did you know that every fourth bite of food you eat is made possible by a bee? We source from local sustainablyoperated farms, and use their local produce and protein as much as possible.” Several of their menu items are named with the bee theme in mind, such as the BeeLT (chili honey-cured bacon, fresh tomato & lettuce with basil aioli on sourdough bread), the Worker Bee (a burger with jack cheese, avocado smash, smoked jalapeno and red onion), and the Queen Bee (a burger with swiss, sautéed mushrooms and roasted red chili pepper relish). In addition to the exquisite food and atmosphere, Baker and Mize were very quick to reiterate that they are extremely passionate about being involved in the community. “We want to the cater to the community,” Baker said. “We’re open to suggestions and feedback, good and bad.” They recently started offering monthly and seasonal events, such as Chef Matt’s Wine Land and Sea Dinner and an Oktoberfest Sidewalk Celebration. Baker, whose family is full of cooks and bakers, is no stranger to a home-cooked meal, or a restaurant produced one either, for that matter. After paying her way through college working in restaurants, she traveled Europe and spent time in Paris where she fell in love with the energy and art of food. Returning to the States, she spent time working in fine dining establishments and learning from all types of chefs. “Basic food doesn’t change, but you have to learn basic techniques before you can make the food


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FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: Karen Baker, owner; Matt Mize, chef; Mitzy Menacho, manager.

fancy,” Baker said. In her late 20s, she went to work for Ridgewells, one of the most well-established catering companies in the country which would average 30 events per day on the weekends. With Ridgewells, she had the privilege of working on high-profile events such as a luncheon for Princess Diana at the State Department as well as Inaugural and special events for the Clintons and both Bushes. It’s safe to say that she learned from the best, and has replicated that success in her À la Carte Catering and Events, where,

every fourth bite of food you eat is made possible by a

as a rule, everything runs like clockwork and events go off without a hitch. Even so, she does have some hair-raising tales about events for very large groups on very short notice, which À la Carte handled with grace and panache. “There can be some pretty unique challenges in catering,” she says. Mize has a bit of a whirlwind resume that landed him in Fauquier County, as well. After serving eight years and two tours in the Marine Corps, Mize laughed as he shared that he “kind of got into food by accident.” After returning home from his



second tour in Somalia in 1996, he was stationed at the Pentagon working under General Krulak. “When they told me I was going to be his aide, I assumed I was going to be his bodyguard or driver,” Mize said. “Instead, they sent me to culinary school in New York, where I discovered the passion for food I never knew I had.” What followed was a career as a chef at the Kennedy Center and the catering division at the Smithsonian, followed by the creation of several restaurants in Philadelphia, New York City, and Cleveland. After the sale of his successful restaurant ‘Mizestro’, Baker discovered Mize and recruited him to be her right-hand man for both À la Carte and the Farm Station Cafe. “I love the creativity and being able to think outside of the box that I have here,” Mize said. “I also love making people happy.” Overall, these two are definitely a force to be reckoned with. In only a few months, they’ve already almost outgrown the cafe and kitchen space they currently have available. In the next eight months, they hope to open a retail shop with local wares, where the bee will also figure prominently with local honey and other bee-related products. When I asked them what they wanted people to know about the cafe and their catering, their answer was simple. They want to hear from local people and offer whatever it is that the community needs. They’re passionate about local, clean food, and being a comfortable place where anyone can come to relax and enjoy a delicious meal. Farm Station Cafe offers delivery to all residents of the Vint Hill area. They’re open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays and 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. They have a pet-friendly patio when the weather permits and plan to be open for brunch every Sunday in the near future. ❖

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LB’s Good Spoon presents

Chicken Pot Pie with Cheddar Biscuits local expert




Laura Sears

INGREDIENTS Chicken Pot Pie: 3 tablespoons unsalted butter 2 lbs chicken thighs, cut into 1 inch cubes 1 onion, diced 2 cups carrot, diced 1 cup celery, diced 1½ cup parsnip, peeled and diced 1 teaspoon dried herbes de provence 8 ounces sliced mushrooms 1/4 cup flour 3½ cups of chicken stock 9 ounces of frozen peas Biscuits: 2 cups flour 2 teaspoons baking powder 1 teaspoon baking soda ½ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon pepper 1 cup grated cheddar cheese 1/4 cup grated Parmesan 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into ½ inch pieces 11/4 cups buttermilk DIRECTIONS Preheat oven to 400. Chicken Pot Pie 1. Melt the butter in a large dutch oven and season the chicken with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Working in two batches cook it about 2-3 minutes per side then remove onto


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Easy, familyfriendly meals

Haymarket resident Laura Sears has been blogging at LB’s Good Spoon since 2008. There she dishes up her love of food, family, and more. Pay her a visit at blog. lbsgoodspoon.com

a plate. Add your vegetables to the empty pot, onion through parsnip, along with the herbs and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook for about 10 minutes, until vegetables are tender. Add mushrooms and cook, uncovered, about 5 more minutes.



lthough we may want to usher in the winter months during the holidays, we all know true winter in Virginia happens now. I’m anticipating a snowstorm in the next couple months, right as I’m itching to buy tulips and think spring. Warmer months will have to wait, and this recipe is sure to help you feel ok that they eventually will arrive. Having been raised in the Midwest I love a good cozy meal. Now as a mom to three little boys, I also love a good one pot wonder. There’s a few more things I love about this recipe. You can batch cook the filling and freeze it giving you a delicious dinner on nights when you’re otherwise tight on time. If you don’t eat meat, it’s easy to opt for sweet potatoes in this dish making it a great vegetarian option as well. You’ll learn that I love to not only stock my freezer, but prefer meals like this that are nourishing for the whole family. We don’t cook separate meals for our boys, so when a dinner like this hits the table I know they can’t argue with these cheesy biscuits atop loads of vegetables. Everyone is happy. I’ve made this recipe a few different ways, and I’m sharing my version with chicken thighs here. If you’d prefer to use store bought cooked rotisserie chicken, use about 4 cups. If you want to make this vegetarian, replace the chicken with about four cups of diced and peeled sweet potatoes. If you’d like to make this ahead of time, make the filling and freeze it in a 9x13 dish. Remove it the night before you want to serve it to allow enough time to thaw in your refrigerator. While the oven is heating you’ll have time to make the biscuits!

2. Add flour and stir for 2 minutes. Next, add stock and scrape up brown bits. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about 3-5 minutes to let the sauce get thick, stirring often. Stir in the chicken, peas, and more salt and pepper to taste. Pour the filling into a 9x13 casserole dish.

Cheddar Biscuits 1. Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and pepper. Add cheese and toss to coat. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter, and then add the buttermilk, stirring just until dough forms. Drop the biscuits into 12 mounds on top of the filling. 2. Bake about 30-35 minutes until golden and bubbly. Enjoy!




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