My friends were raving about how they had found their "perfect cake" for their wedding. When they told me the name of the bakery, I have to say, it was a little offputting - I'm hoping most bakeries are sanitary. So I was joking with my friends about it and they started raving about it. I'm relatively new to the area and this bakery is an institution. And the family is said to be very nice! The proof is in the pudding (well in the cake). I have to say, when I get a wedding invitation, i start looking forward to the cake and this was perfect! Creamy frosting (my favorite part), moist cake. Next time I have an occasion, I'll get over myself and head to Gallis.
My parents bought new kitchen appliances (ceramic top stove, oven, microwave unit) about 2 years ago. The staff was knowledgeable and answered the myriad questions my stepfather had. My stepfather purchased extra warranty coverage and has used it twice without problems - once they had to replace the oven door for a cracked window and once for a broken light (I think my stepfather tried to change the bulb, but ended up short circuiting something). My parents are bugging me to upgrade and go to Telecenter.
Johannsen's is well known for the preschool set, especially if your kids have wide feet. Now, my kids never had wide feet but I wanted to make sure their first pair of shoes were well made and not just the Target/Payless special. Though expensive, it was well worth it. I have a friend whose daughter was fitted by their staff and "outgrew" her shoes in 5 days. I told her to go in and complain. I'm not sure if they took the shoes back or if they gave her a good deal on a new pair, but she was satisfied enough to keep going there, even after Stride Rites became available at Ross and other discount stores. I like the feel of a real shoe store, not just the shoe department of a mega-chain.
I went with my mom to find a new workout outfit. My mom is very hit or miss on how stylin' she is - sometimes she pulls out the old lady stuff, so I was pleasantly surprised at how cute the stuff was. It did seem a bit pricey, but I think it caters to those who are willing to spend on themselves. I like the layout of the store and there is a lot of merchandise, but it doesn't seem crowded. I'll go back when I eventually start exercising.
Okay, I have to admit, our family has settled into suburban life and it's been a while since we've been to North Beach, so maybe there is a contender there. My husband and I met in Boston, where they have a large Italian population and we used to go for cannolis quite often. I had missed them for years when a random web search for a bakery for a cake yielded this gem! It's a mom and pop shop with a non-chain atmosphere. They make several different varieties of cannoli, but my favorite is the traditional. They also sell a great tiramisu, specialty Italian cakes and spumoni. Save the BART fare and go down the street.
I have to preface this by saying that my children do not go here. But my friend raves about this school daily, so I feel qualified to recommend it on her behalf. She has 3 children and all three have entered at 18 months. They have 3 teachers in each class, one who speaks English, one who speaks Japanese, one who speaks Chinese, so they are immersed in the languages, but the kids pick one foreign language to learn. My friend is Caucasian and she said there is a pretty good mix of cultures in the students. They get enough instruction in the language to carry on an organic conversation. My friend's oldest child and a child from ISTP and a third who is a native Chinese speaker can all understand each other at playgroup (too bad 2 out of the 3 parents can't! This could get tricky!)
My son went to this camp for 2 years. I am a big believer that summer camp is for fun, not for academics. Kamp Koala is fun and they do learn about getting along with other kids. It's 3 hours Monday, Wednesday and Friday and there is a theme each day. They do simple crafts and do some "cooking". What I loved about it most last year is that my son got to know kids from other preschools who live in the area and ultimately he was in Kindergarten with. It really help the transition, since all of his friends were going to different schools. The staff is young, college and high school kids but they are long-termers and they really enjoy being around kids and have more patience then I!
When I was selling my townhouse and buying a new one, I met with a few realtors. Sherry was impressive and very professional looking, but she kind of scared me off with what she expected me to do to get the house ready for sale. I ultimately chose another realtor, who was more willing to "hold my hand". We ultimately got a townhouse we love, but didn't get as much as we could have gotten on the sale and the buy wasn't as favorable as we might like. Sherry has the expertise to get the best offer.
My friend has known Sherry for a long time and when her grandparents were selling their longtime house, Sherry walked them through the process and got them the best offer.
My mom's pug doesn't like going out of the house. Try to get him out on a walk, nothing doing. He will get into the car because my parents take him with them when they go out to eat (leaving the window unrolled), though he barks at everything he sees. But when they tell him that they are going to "get pretty", he runs to the car. Of course, it doesn't happen that often. Walking in to pick him up, I could tell they care about their four legged clients. The animals did not seem distressed in the slightest. Fred was clean and happy and my parents have sent him back several times.
A group of friends of mine and I had been going to Curves for a while when we found out where Curves money goes, that was the straw that broke the camel's back and we joined BL when it opened. It is in a little strip mall and parking is usually not a problem. We like the hours (we can go early before work or after work - 8:00), downside is no Sunday hours. It's circuit like Curves, but the equipment is adjustable. Diana, the owner, is very nice and acommodating and really makes us feel like she appreciates our business.