Did you see the photo of the wooden cow in August’s Oak Cliff Advocate? That mama cow and its calf, which live (for the most part) in the Merlino family’s East Kessler front lawn, have stories to tell.

One of Lynne Merlino’s colleagues at Rosemont Elementary, Heidi Maggio, devised a plan to kidnap one of the cows and hang “Wanted” posters on “every pole between my house and Rosemont,” Merlino says. The posters included her home phone number, “so I really got phone calls.” This happened right around Christmas, so for payback, the Merlinos took the other cow to the Maggios’ front lawn and arranged it “in a bad position” with a twig reindeer. The photo was made into a Christmas card from the Maggio family, and sent out to all of their friends.

More recently, the cows have acted as a source of nostalgia because the neighborhood children who once carted around the cows as playtime objects are now teenagers. As one young man prepared to leave for the Air Force, one of the cows ended up at his house with balloons tied on as a going away present.