And that’s how you get kicked out of school.

Refresh.

Hold on, I’ve been refreshing my email since I got home.

I’m waiting on an email from the school principal.

By now, she’s probably been notified about the incident after school.

Refresh.

You know when the class “trouble-maker” does something bad and the whole class gets punished for it? I’m waiting for a new school rule to be announced to punish other families.

Refresh.

No, Emma and Kate are good kids. They don’t listen to Scott and me but they somehow listen to their teachers. But we are the Burtons and I swear this shit only happens to me.

Stella shot up to legend status after school today.

Legend status. Stella, the big black dog that will stand the test of time. New school rules written because of her heroic entrance onto school grounds. She busted out of the car in the name of her friendly breed, the labrador retriever. No dog has come that close to setting a paw inside the school.

She did it. She put a paw inside the school.

stella

We live far enough away that I drive the kids to and from school.

On the rare occasion, I bring Stella with me to pick up the girls. Today was a rare occasion. I thought she could use the fresh air. The school staff hates me.

Refresh.

The wait in the school car line started out fine. I caught up on some emails, I helped write a rap song for my friend’s baby book, and then I talked to Scott on the phone. Stella waited with her eyes on the prize.

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The school bell rang. Cars inched forward. I made my way to the front of the school. I saw Kate running toward the car with a smile on her face.

Oh, she looks happy today.

“Hi, Kate!”

I waved.

Kate opened the door.

“Oh no, wait!”

Gone. Stella was gone.

A wave of screams pierced the air. Brothers protected their sisters with backpacks. Teachers grabbed their walkie talkies and ran towards Stella. All eyes went to the black blur jumping on kid after kid. Stella’s big tongue crossed over every face she could reach.

I rolled my window down.

“STELL-LAAAAAAAAA! KATE GET STELLA!”

Kids moved in swarms from spot to spot in the grass. Boys dive-bombed Stella. Stella jumped on teachers. Stella knocked down a girl. The girl cried.

“EMMA! GET! STELLA!”

What do I do? I don’t know what to do. Do I get out? Do I…no, I shouldn’t film this.

A teacher walked up and down the sidewalk.

“Whose dog is this?! WHOSE DOG IS THIS!!”

“Oh, um! Hey!”

I slowly lifted my foot off the brake and rolled forward alongside the teacher.

“Mine. She’s mine. I’m sorry! What do I do?! EMMA AND KATE STOP LAUGHING! GET HER! GET HERRRR!! Should I get out?”

“No, stay here and we’ll get her. What’s her name?”

“Stella. I’m so sorry.”

Emma runs by, laughing.

“That’s my dog! STELLL-LAAAAA!”

I could feel the helicopter parents hovering behind me. They had the principal on speed dial.

“Stellaaaa! STELL-LAAAAAA!!”

Oh my God, this is a nightmare. I’m going to get sued for having a dog that loves to play with kids. They’re going to talk about me on News Talk radio tomorrow. They’re going to make a joke about that old movie with the man screaming, “Stella!”

“STELL-LAAAAA!”

Stella ran towards the open door into the school.

“DON’T LET HER IN THE SCHOOL! STOP HER!

NO! I’m going to have to chase her up and down hallways. She’s going to knock over desks and leave paw prints on white boards. They’re going to send my kids to private school after this. We can’t afford that! 

Stella placed one paw inside the door. A teacher grabbed her collar and yanked her back.

Oh, whew. Ok, it’s ok.

Emma hopped in the car. Her face was red and she had the hiccups from laughing so hard. Kate pushed her way in. The teacher dragged Stella back into my car and shut the door.

“Stella wanted to go to school, mom!”

“Please don’t tell your dad.”

The girls called Scott.

Scott knows. I heard the disapproving, “Oh, Julie” over the phone. But it really should be “Oh Stella.”

It crossed my mind that maybe it’s in my head. This probably happens all the time. Many families in the area have friendly labs.

And then Emma’s friend rang our doorbell. Emma asked her if she heard what Stella did after school.

“THAT was STELLA?! Our teacher told us to stay inside because there was a big dog running around!”

And that’s how legends are made.

I’m waiting to read the disapproving email.

Refresh.

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Wait, don’t go! Find me on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram

 

Wile E. Coyote.

Somewhere in Africa, a lion named Cecil fell dead and the Internet exploded.

Somewhere in Kansas, Scott and I were sneaking trophy deer and fish mounts into our new house because the Internet shamed the sport of hunting.

Ok, the shame fell more towards poaching. I hope. As it should be.

But still, we’re trying to make friends in this neighborhood and a lion’s death 8,835 miles away didn’t help.

Our trophy mounts are on the walls so the animals can watch us drink beer out of our frosty mugs. Jalapeño venison stick?

To be honest, we’re not concerned about a lion showing up in our backyard because this is America. 

And in America, more specifically at the Burton household – Wile. E. Coyote will be toast. His head will be raised up next. He will have the prime spot to watch the clinks of the whole neighborhood with their frosty mugs.

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Belle, our yorkie poo, was attacked by a coyote on Saturday night.

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Scott was outside on our patio. He was laying down on the patio couch, watching TV. From the angle the coyote came in, Scott was hidden. The dogs barked. Scott popped up in time to see a coyote pick up Belle and take off in a field.

Scott’s hunter instincts kicked in and he took off on foot. He headed at a full sprint towards the coyote. Belle was dangling in its mouth. The desperate screams that came from Scott scared the coyote enough to drop Belle in the field.

“Julie. Julie.”

“Yeah? I’m in here, trying to help the girls with the shower.”

“Belle was attacked by a coyote.”

Scott appeared with Belle in his arms. I couldn’t comprehend what he said. All I saw was a blood drenched shirt, Belle, and the horror in Scott’s eyes.

My stomach dropped. Bailey. I couldn’t handle telling Emma and Kate about another family member’s death. And a violent one, at that.

The ER vet called her one of the luckiest dogs he’s ever seen.

Surviving a coyote attack is rare. The coyote didn’t press down hard enough to puncture her lungs. She is severely injured but her organs are intact. Scott’s hunter instinct saved her. There’s no doubt in my mind Bailey was right there, flying over Scott’s shoulder.

Belle is healing. She’s slowly getting back to her normal self. She’s well enough to stop her pain meds. She’s still on antibiotics. Her rabies is up-to-date. Her regular vet said she is healing beautifully.

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She will survive. The rest of her family developed the hunters instinct overnight. The neighborhood is on watch. We have family members we need to protect.

I have contacted the city and discovered there is a coyote problem. The city sounded grateful Belle survived and we have ER vet documentation of the attack. Most people cannot come up with documentation simply because the animal does not survive. There may be a chance of the city setting up traps. We’ll do everything we can to push it. And if a coyote ever comes onto our property, well, you know. Cheers.

In this story, the hunter always wins.

Explode away, Internet.

Do you have a coyote attack story? I have heard at least three a day since Belle’s attack. Are you concerned about your dogs or cats when they go outside? What would you do if your pet was attacked by a coyote in front of you? 

Color me purple.

Series of text messages on the eve of The Color Run:

Olive's ready!

Olive is ready!

Tank's ready!

Tank is ready!

Bailey's ready!

Bailey is ready!

Belle's ready!

Belle is ready!

Lloyd is ready!

Lloyd is ready!

"I'm too tired to find Sadie." Random stuffed animal.

“I’m too tired to find Sadie.”
Stuffed animal is ready.

“Holy smokes people! 48 missed text messages! No pets to torture here.”

BREAKING NEWS: I DIDN’T DIE DURING MY FIRST 5K.

I am alive and well to write about The Color Run – Lawrence, Kansas. Thank you running Gods for giving us temperatures in the 60s. Thank you friends for taking my hand to stop me from bailing the start of the race when the crowd broke out into Rock Chalk, Jayhawwk…K-UUUUU. You know that hurts my Wildcat ears.

Busting my 5k virginity with flying colors.

There we are. I’m somewhere under the purple.

Advice for newbie 5k runners since I’m allowed to give advice now:

  • You won’t die. I mean, I’m pretty sure you won’t die.
  • You must train for a 5k. This actually depends on how competitive you are. I saw several walkers. Walkers with strollers. Wheelchairs. You could walk the thing. No one really cares – this wasn’t a timed race. No matter how much you train, be fully prepared for an 80-year-old woman to sprint past you with pink, orange and blue tinted grey hair.
  • Adrenaline will play a part in the actual race. I was not expecting this. I thought my sides would cramp. I thought I would give up and walk the majority of the race. My body’s pain level went from good – to hurting – to really hurting – to my legs are numb – to just finish.
  • Find running partners. I had pretty low expectations of myself going into the race. My goal: finish. My running partners, Melanie and Allison, ran the entire time. This was just not in my plan. My non-badass self walked for a tiny bit around the 4th kilometer. I finished 3rd in our group. I wouldn’t have ran for so long if it wasn’t for Melanie and Allison.
  • Bring your own leaf blower for Color Runs. The line to get blown was way too long. Blowing the color off, people. The color.
  • Bring headphones. I wish I would have brought headphones. And pull the headphone strings up through the shirt. Allison’s entertainment factor went up as I watched her swat and attack loose headphone strings.
  • Expect your body parts to talk to you. On the ride home, my quads said, “what the eff did you do to us?!” When I got into the shower, my hamstrings said, “Oh, no you di’int!” The next morning, it was my butt wondering, “what the hell…” Serious.
  • Go to an all-you-can-eat buffet after the race. I was starving after the race. I was still starving after lunch. I porked out on 5 full meals when I got home. I consumed a record-breaking 6,584 calories that day. I’m assuming I burned just as many running. I’m eating a taco as I type this.
  • Drink beer after the race. Because you earned it. Follow up with another beer. And a bloody mary. It was all delicious.
  • No matter how much color is thrown at you, you won’t pee different colors. I checked.
  • Watch out for the KU fans picking on KSU fans. Have witty comebacks. This probably only applies to me.

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Run a 5K – CHECK! Settin’ goals and bustin’ through ’em! I wish I could write something more inspirational. But that’s just me; I’m not really an inspiring person. I call it as it is —

You runners are effing crazy. You can bet your brand new running shoes that I was cussing you out in my head during the run.

But yes, I would do it again. Olive, Tank, Bailey, Belle, Lloyd and Stuffed Animal want another photoshoot.

Lap dogs don’t care if you’re half Mexican.

To: <Group> Family

From:  Mark (brother-in-law)

I was reading on yahoo this morning and saw an article titled, “The 10 Most High-Maintenance Dog Breeds” and immediately thought, “German Shorthaired Pointers” have to be on that list. Turns out they are (photo 7 of 11)

_____________

To: <Group> Family

From: Julie

Well, great. Both Belle’s “parents” are on there too. (Cute as ever, btw. Well, not the poodle so much but if you were to shrink it to 5 lbs, adorable.)

Oh, and the devil herself, Bailey. aka MARLEY.

 p.s. My next dog after Bailey will be a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. How adorable is that thing? Her and Belle would have to fight for my lap space.

_____________

To: <Group> Family

From:  Scott

Bug, did you notice that it says the Cavelier dogs never leave your side and will hang out in the bathroom with you?  If you get one you better tell him you’re half Mexican.

_____________

To: <Group> Family

From:  Julie

Oh really, Scott?

 

No, actually lap dogs don’t care if you’re half Mexican.

PB Dog Treats

I make these every year for the dogs in our families simply b/c I have no nieces or nephews to spoil.
To Heidi, Duke, Jack, Coco and Claire.  Belle and Bailey get the leftover dough and help me clean up 🙂

I’m a horrible cook but the dogs love them.  The dogs are so good to me.

2 c. flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 c. peanut butter
1 c. milk
1/2 c. oatmeal

Mix together. It’s gross, but the hands are the easiest to work with.  Roll out dough.  Use cookie cutters.  Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes.