Stella and KC Host a Pittie Party

Stella and KC had themselves a pittie party this weekend, inviting a few of their closest pit bull friends over for a Memorial Day swim.

Most had attended doggie daycare – so we knew everyone was dog friendly – but just like with kids, the introductions were slightly awkward.  Once they met (sniffed each other’s butts), got over their shyness (ran away), and established ranks and set boundaries (growled), everyone relaxed and had fun.

KC only showed her true (mean girl) side once…when claiming her outside couch-throne.  A few minutes inside for a time out, though, and she got the message.

Nancy and her recent foster fail, Big Kahuna (with a name like that, you know he’s from Stray Rescue) get used to the water


And he’s off!


Tot, rescued by Stray Rescue with her brother Tater and adopted by my friend Nicole, brought her own pool to the party.


With help from her mom, Tot tries out the big girl pool


Despite prodding from his mom Kelly, Zeus wants noooo part of that wet stuff


Big Kahuna and Chomper became fast friends


Chomper and Tot in a neck and neck race


Cockapoo KC has no problem partying with the pitties.  Here she passes by Niki, who chooses not to follow the crowd.


Nicole, Tot and KC enjoying the sunshine


Totter Tot


Zeus – biggest momma’s boy love bug ever


Nancy and her handsome boy BK


Nicole rethinks her snack time idea. Actually, they were all very well-behaved 🙂 To her right (besides me laughing my head off) is Mia, a pugador (pug-labrador), whose dad Brad works with me at the Watering Bowl.

Image 1

Tot getting a leg up on Chomper to get to the cheese


Mesmerized by the cheese, Zeus tries to will it into his mouth


Stella, almost 11, made an appearance until nap time; then we never saw her again.


We had one minor mishap. Tot, whose legs are as short as a Basset Hound’s, took a flying leap from the 4-foot wall to the pool deck and landed on her chin. We don’t know how she didn’t break a leg or her jaw.


Our hope for the day was to hang out with friends and watch the pups run around and wear themselves out.

Based on the pictures sent to me later…

Image 2 Image 3 Image 4 Image 5

Image 7 Image 8

…I’d say the party was a success.

Raise the ‘Woof’ Wednesday

The Stray Rescue staff started a wonderful system to track enrichment time spent with the shelter dogs to ensure each gets equal time. It’s not a perfect system, since some dogs are more popular with volunteers and hence they have more “fans,” but this way the love is spread more evenly as the staff fills in the gaps where needed.
There’s a key for us to follow. W = extra walk / E = enrichment outside of the shelter (park, home, etc.) / CR = car ride / A = time in apartment / Y = play time in yard / R = run
The red colored marker is for volunteers and the black marker is for staff, but the red pen got lost and the volunteers started writing “vol” next to the letter.
Some dogs are not allowed extra enrichment for various temporary reasons.

I love that Paul, an enrichment staff member, encourages staff to spend time with red collar (staff only) dogs by offering lottery tickets. These dogs don’t get a lot of enrichment time because volunteers aren’t allowed to take them out. The goal is for the dogs to become purple collar so anyone can enrich them.

My own dogs fight over enrichment time with me. Here’s how it goes:  Stella comes and sits on my lap first. KC immediately comes over, plops herself right on Stella and squeezes her out as if she’s not even there. “What? Stella? Where? I don’t see a dog.”
Poor Stella. And she’s so submissive. She quietly backs out and walks to the other end of the couch. 
And waits for her daddy to get home.

Our Month in Pictures – October

You know it’s a slow month when I post pictures of myself with friends at a hookah bar. But it was such a fun experience. Have you ever been? My friend Katie is the best at making people do things outside their comfort zone. So when Katie, Jan and I had lunch at a Middle Eastern restaurant called Ranoush, we ordered things like shish tawuk, chicken shawarma, and baba ganoush. Then Katie insisted we try a hookah. I thought she was nuts, but all of a sudden the waiter was telling us the flavors and bringing the hookah to our table. We were cracking up.
“Is this even legal?”
“We’re not really doing this, are we?”
“Take a picture of us!”
By the way, it’s molasses, fruit flavoring (we picked watermelon and bubble gum) and a little tobacco. It’s actually pretty good. It’s like having dessert without the calories, since it leaves a fruity flavor in your mouth.

We ended up having the best time…eating great food, laughing, and trying something new. We even did a little shopping afterwards. Who would have thought lunch could be so fun. Thanks Katie! Crossed off “Experience a Hookah Bar” from my Bucket List.
My niece’s (Larry’s sister’s daughter) teacup micro Maltipoo, Phoebe, came over for a visit. Stella absolutely adored her and was sad when she left.

KC, who wanted to eat Phoebe at first but eventually tolerated her for the hour she was here, had surgery last week to remove the mass on her back. It was about the size of a silver dollar, but to get clean borders, they made the incision big.
Biopsy results:  Grade 2 mast cell tumor
Translation:  On a scale of one to three – one as benign and three as malignant – KC’s tumor is a two, and it’s actually a low grade two so it’s closer to a one. This means she’s likely to get more masses, so we’ll keep a close eye on her and remove any new ones right away. If it was a grade three they would send her to an oncologist. If it was a one it would be totally benign and they wouldn’t worry at all. Her stitches come out on Wednesday, and otherwise she’s doing great.
I wanted to share this picture I took of Stray Rescue pup Nelson Hull. He is just the sweetest!  Apparently Brett Hull found him somewhere and brought him to the shelter, so they named the dog after him. Nelson Hull must have been adopted already, because I can’t find him on the website. I knew he wouldn’t be there long.

My last enrichment dog, Phycox, is still available.

He’s so sweet. I’m going to take a break in November. I can’t stand having so many of my enrichment dogs still at the shelter. Madame Butterfly, one of my dogs from last year, is still there. So are Kiddo and Phycox.

And my dog for this month is Barry White…

Even though most of my former enrichment dogs are assigned new enrichment buddies, most people work full time and aren’t able to see them as often as I did. Plus, I’ve made a connection with the dogs and feel I should visit them. That’s four dogs worth of guilt right there!
So next month I’m not going to get a new dog; I’m going to focus on the ones I already have and just hope they get adopted. Soon.
Eric…remember him?
He had 16 points and 10 rebounds in his scrimmage yesterday in Tampa, FL. Larry and I are going to see him play in Ocala on November 13, and then he’ll be home for Thanksgiving. 
He’s doing well in school and has made friends. He likes his basketball teammates, but he’s become good friends with guys on the baseball team and with girls on the volleyball and softball teams.
Yep, that’s Eric in a shopping cart. 
I don’t ask questions.

Defending NJCAA National Champion CF Men’s Hoops 2013-2014 schedule set

The defending NJCAA National Champion College of Central Florida men’s basketball team had its 2013-2014 schedule announced recently.
The Patriots will kick off their regular season home slate with a game against Pasco-Hernando on November 2.
CF’s non-conference home schedule also includes games against State College of Florida-Manatee (November 5 and December 14), St. Petersburg (November 13), South Georgia College (November 16), Hillsborough (December 4), Pensacola (December 13), Palm Beach State (December 15) and Polk State (January 11).
From there, the Patriots kick off conference home slate on January 22 against Daytona State.
CF will have a pair of conference home games against FSC-Jacksonville and will face DSC and rival Santa Fe one time apiece at Patriot Gym.
The Patriots have five home games against teams that made the state tournament last season, with two of those matchups coming against Manatee.
CF rallied from a 23-point deficit to knock off SCOF 105-103 in Ocala last year, before rolling to a win over the Manatees in the opening round of the state tournament.
SCOF, along with another state tournament team from a year ago, Palm Beach State, will be CF’s foes during the Florida Colleges Men’s Basketball Shootout.
Meanwhile, the last team to knock off CF at home back in 2011, Pensacola, returns to Ocala for a game this season, as does Polk, a state tournament squad from a year ago.
As far as road games, CF will make out-of-state trips to South Carolina and New York for games this season.
The Patriots will face USC-Salkehatchie, a national tournament team from a year ago during their trip to the Magnolia State and will also embark on a trip to the Big Apple for the second consecutive year.
I’m going to make a separate post for this later because I have a ton of pictures, but today I crossed off “Attend a Woodchopper’s Ball” from my Bucket List. 
Let’s just say it involved tractors, chicken shit bingo, baby donkeys, pie contests, and moonshine samples.
Only in Missouri.

And I can’t go without posting a picture of baby Will, who’ll be 7 months on Halloween.


It’s a Wonderful Life…

Sorry if I send posts to anyone who already receives them automatically. The subscription is anonymous, so I can’t tell who subscribes and who doesn’t.
We’ve had a busy few weeks. I love these collages because I can fit lots of pics in 🙂
For Labor Day we went to Lake of the Ozarks. The best part was spending time with Will, who is 5 months old now. He is such a happy baby.

Love this pic of Larry and Will…

Last Friday, my friend Nicole held a Trivia Night Fundraiser for her 9-month-old foster puppy, Maddy, who needs life saving heart surgery. She’s the black and white pup. The other one is Gabby, who, because of her overtly affectionate tendencies, “worked” the kissing booth.  The night was a success and the money was raised.

By the way, this was Gabby before, when she was found as a stray with severe mange only about six months ago. She is the sweetest, friendliest, wiggly-est butt dog you’ve ever met! How adorable is she in her pink tutu and purple headband?
Hard to believe it’s the same dog…
On Saturday morning, Larry and I drove to Missouri State to meet Eric, who was there on his official visit. He played basketball for about an hour with the players, which we got to watch. He had a great visit and really liked the school. This Thursday or Friday he’ll visit Florida Gulf Coast University and then decide in the next week or two where he’ll go next year.
That’s him in the picture on the left in the grey sweaty shirt. He played seven games in a row.
On the way to the school Larry and I called Big Cedar Lodge to see if they had a room for the night. We figured since it’s only 50 minutes away from the school – and it was our anniversary the following day (6 years) – why not make a mini-vacation out of it. We’re so glad we did! It was beautiful. The best part was that when it was time to pack up and leave we didn’t have anything to pack except the T-shirts and toothbrushes we bought in the gift shop 🙂
At night we went to the Buzzard Bar to watch the “Singing Cowboy.” His real name is Clay Self and he was the funniest comedian and most talented musician we’ve ever seen. We laughed so hard. His 14-year-old son Levi (see picture bottom left) was incredible on the fiddle and banjo. I would have gone back the next night to see them again.
If you ever get a chance to go here, do. We’re trying to figure out how to do a family trip here next year. Anyone in?

 I brought my former enrichment dog, Kiddo, who is still at the shelter 😦 boooo, to our house to swim one day. She loves the water and had the best time. My dogs went to doggie daycare so they wouldn’t cause a noisy raucous, barking at each other through the glass door. Stella hates daycare, by the way. The staff told me she barked the entire time. Three hours won’t kill her, though. Poor Kiddo lives at the shelter day in and day out. 
Love you, sweet girl!!

My new enrichment dog as of yesterday is Phycox. 
He’s been at the shelter for a few years. 
He has issues. 
He likes to bite people. 
Especially men. 
I have to keep him far away from anyone he doesn’t know because he becomes protective of his handler. 
Other than that he’s very sweet! Haha!

Family Trip to Lake / Fourth of July

We took our first trip to Lake of the Ozarks with baby Will
Stella waiting impatiently to leave.
The girls know when their beds come out that they get to go with us.

 Will had a great time…
…sleeping in his mom’s arms

And his dad’s arms!
Wake up, Will
So sweet
He woke up for his first dip in the lake
Stella and KC loved the boat and wave runners

Jason and KC
Stella and her daddy

My doggie suitcase
KC and me
We thought Stella would hate the wave runner, but she loved it. As long as she didn’t have to get wet.
KC swam as fast as she could to whoever was on the wave runner. She wanted on!
Jason (left) and two co-workers
Beer shooters?
Took the boat to Paradise for lunch
On the 4th of July, I looked forward to darkness…
And fireworks…
KC, not so much. This is where she sat when she heard them.
Will chillin’ with his Grandpa
and modeling the funny mustache pacifier I got him 🙂

We all had a wonderful, relaxing time and can’t wait to do it again.

Catching Up…and BIG NEWS

We have some catchin’ up to do! Two weeks ago – on September 8th, Larry and I celebrated our 5th anniversary by going to Lake of the Ozarks. Just us and the dogs. It was the first time in 15 years that we’ve gone by ourselves. Usually we’re entertaining family or friends and driving kids around in the boat. It was nice not to have to be anywhere. We shopped, ate, and took the dogs out on the boat. They loved it.

View from the condo

The girls chillin’
Co-captain extraordinaire 

Guess what I wanted to do the night of our anniversary. Have a nice romantic dinner? Nope, I wanted to watch the Mizzou football game. Not surprising, for those who know me.

Speaking of which…two weeks ago we went to the Mizzou football game for Parents’ Weekend. It was nice to see Eric. I’m actually starting to miss him. I can hear my dad now…”Excuse me, we must have a bad reception.” Ha! I really do though. He is having the best time at school, and the only reason he’ll come home to visit – if he ever does – will be to see the dogs. He misses them. 

Brian and Eric
We saw his dorm room, which he said he spent an hour cleaning before we got there. If that’s true then I’d hate to see what it looked like beforehand. He has his own room but shares a bathroom with Ryan Rosburg. He said he doesn’t spend a lot of time in his room. I can see why…it’s small and depressing. A lot of his friends from Brentwood go to Mizzou (Larry says it’s Brentwood on steroids) and are in a dorm near his, so when he’s not in class, working out, or playing basketball, he spends a lot of time with them. He tells me he’s getting all A’s so far, so hopefully he’ll keep that up.  

E with his friends from Brentwood, who go to Mizzou, siblings Patrick and Caroline
What else… 

My enrichment dog still hasn’t been adopted, so we continue our “play dates.” He gets so excited when he sees me at the door to his kennel. He knows he’s in for some F-U-N fun! We do different things when we go out…
Like hiking
to the park
and playground
Out to breakfast
and ice cream

(But not on the same day. He’s trying to watch his figure.)

Looks like he ate strawberry ice cream! Not sure why this pic makes his face look so red.
I opened my trunk to get something and he jumped in. He is such a goofball
I made this collage for Stray Rescue’s website to add to his bio

Our room addition is slowly coming along. Everything is here and ready to be installed…the bathtub, light fixtures, bedroom furniture, you name it. The plumbing and electricity is done. I think drywall is next.

The biggest news of all????

I’m going to be a grandma! 

Julie and Billy are pregnant and we are so excited. We can finally stop treating our dogs like babies.  Oh wait…that’ll never happen. But next March we’ll be on to the next phase in our lives as grandparents. It’s hard to believe I’ve known Julie since she was 14 and now she’s 28 and soon to be a mom. So neat. We can’t wait!

“I’ll always be your baby” ~ Stella

Our Month In Pictures

I’ll fill you in on the latest (never a dull moment in this family)…

Eric has been offered – and accepted – a preferred walk-on position at Mizzou, which means he’ll be on the roster and travel with the team. In the summer they’ll play in a tournament in the Bahamas, and in August they go to Europe. He’ll red shirt his freshman year.  He’s excited to finally know where he’s going. In order to have less of a class load during basketball season, the players take summer school classes. That means my nest will be empty starting in June! Woo hoo! I can’t wait!  I’m not sure what I’ll do without him.

Mizzou has the #1 college rec center in the country. I can’t imagine how a school could possibly top this 

One of the rec center lounges
Watching Selection Sunday festivities in a suite at Mizzou Arena

What do you think, E…you like the Golden Girls?

I got bit by a dog where I volunteer. For how long I’ve been there – and how often – it was bound to happen
*****WARNING – Kind of Graphic*****

Before stitches

After stitches
The doctor was so funny. I don’t know what he was doing here. He has a mean face, but he was being funny because I told him I was going to take a picture for my blog. He took the shot of the “after stitches” picture

Everything was fine. I got three stitches and it healed within a few days.  It happened when I was sitting down with the dog in his cage, rubbing his belly while he was on his back, something startled him and he jumped up and bit me. He didn’t attack me and it wasn’t done in a vicious manner. SR knows this particular dog and even though he’s sweet for the most part, they would never adopt him out to anyone with kids. He’s been in the shelter since he was a puppy, so I’m sure he’s a little cuckoo, but with the right person and outside of the chaotic shelter he would be a perfectly good dog.
Eric went on Spring Break to Panama City, Florida, with 14 other people. They drove in three cars. Here are some of them before they left.
He had a great time, and knew when he got back he’d have to get to work playing basketball and working out.
While he was gone, I got to work cleaning his car. I know I should have made him do it himself, but I couldn’t stand it another second.  I just hope his college roommate, Ryan, will be able to put up with him.
After basketball season, the team had their banquet. 
The seniors:  Eric, Jamie, Mike and Kurt
Larry got a new car. Here it is coming off the truck.
Repeat after me, Larry…”THIS IS THE LAST CAR I’LL EVER BUY.”

We took a drive to the winery

I wish this picture wasn’t blurry. I took it as we were driving through Defiance.
We got pulled over on the way home.
Larry talked his way out of getting a speeding ticket.  We’d only had a glass or two of wine, so we were good.  I think the guy just wanted to see the car 🙂
We went to the winery the following weekend with Julie and Billy. Larry let them take his other car. I love this pic of them.
Larry even let Eric take his girlfriend out to dinner in it
He gets so annoyed when I take his picture. Why are boys like that? Girls ham it up for the camera and boys get mad. Whatever…
Bye! Have fun! Be careful!
My girls waiting for their afternoon yogurt parfait (plain yogurt and blueberries)

That’s all for now!