Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgiving 2012

Maybe we don't walk around saying angrily "What do I have to be thankful for?"  Maybe some of you do. I know I don't, but I know I can also be ungrateful for the many blessings I have.

I just recently read a devotional that challenged me to be thankful for everything, including the things I think are small.  It said, that I shouldn't think of anything as being small.  I have been blessed to have everything I have small and large.  Wow.  I had to re-assess my point of view.

So, here's what I'm thankful for this Thanksgiving:
  1. I'm thankful that I have been blessed to live in America.  No offense to any readers from other countries, but I believe America is the greatest country in the world to live in.  We have so many freedoms and the ability to succeed above our wildest imagination if we just work hard.
  2. I'm thankful that my grandparents had a great influence on my life as a child and still today I find myself learning from them.  I am thankful that they have lived long enough to also impart some of their wisdom to my children.
  3. I'm thankful for my husband and kids.  I can't imagine life without them.  They make me smile and help me grow.
  4. I'm thankful for my parents and my siblings.  I have been blessed to come from a large family.  My parents were more than patient with us growing up!  My siblings make life so much better.  They are all so unique and we all love to laugh together.
  5. Finally, I am thankful for all my friends.  They are such a blessing to me and my family.  They are encouraging, thoughtful, talented... the list could go forever.
When I look at this list, I realize, I can't imagine life without any of these things existing.  There is a lot more I could list, but this is a start.  What are you thankful for this year?

Photo courtesy of

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Do You Know Who Your Kids Are?

Yes, you read that correctly!  Do you know WHO your kids are?  I started thinking about this Saturday.  A young lady came to check in a deer.  It was her first one ever!

As, I began to think about her accomplishment, I kept thinking about how wonderful it was that her family was with her as she checked the deer in.  I also thought, "What a special time that was for her and her father."  My thoughts quickly changed, though.  What about all the kids who do not have that chance?  What about all the parents who don't spend the time with their kids teaching them about hunting, or more importantly, life?  It was a long process to get where this young lady was.  There was scouting.  There was days sitting and waiting.  She had even missed one the week before.  In all that time, she was hanging with her dad and her family.  Learning.

I could throw statistics at you about kids, but let me tell you what I see as a business owner and a youth group leader.  There are a lot of kids who love the outdoors.  I have kids who come in all the time just to shop around.  They are frequent customers.  Kids want to know they are loved.  If they don't find that love from us as parents, they will find it from somewhere else.  This generation is exposed to more garbage and overall distractions from media, than any other generation in history.  They need a break from those distractions.  Put the cell phone or mp3 player down.  Listen to nature.  Watch the sunrise or set.  I find they generally want to spend time with their families, although, some I have do not.  I also know many of their parents have no idea of the pressures at school they're dealing with.

Then I see kids who go hunting/fishing with their parents often.  I have been at my store long enough to thankfully see some of these kids grow to be responsible adults.  They are polite, not just to me but to their parents.  Many of their parents could tell you what these kids are planning to do with their futures.  They know their kids.  Their kids can tell you about the parents when they come on their own.  They know them, because they spend time with them.  I once had a parent tell me that the best thing he ever did was to buy some land with a cabin.  He felt the time he spent with his family up there was priceless.  The memories they had and the relationships built were well worth the money spent on the purchase.  His son now comes in as an adult.  From what I know of his son, he's right.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Muzzleloader Season Begins

Today is the first day of muzzleloader season.  Today, I could post about the merits of hunting.  Or, I could talk about the modern muzzleloader, but I'm not. I'm going to post about one of my favorite things about hunting- Camaraderie.

Today I have checked in 3 deer.  With two of the deer, I had more than one person come with the person checking in the deer.  One group was father/son, the other were friends.  The other person who checked in was out with his son earlier, but didn't bring him to check in.  This is not to mention the people who wanted to check out the deer when they were here as the deer was checked in.

This is what hunting is about, spending time with the people you love and care about.  When people come in here, they are excited.  They want to talk about how they shot the deer.  Generally, there is a little trash talking between friends/family.  There is a lot of laughter.  They talk about the time they had while they were out together.  Shoot, I've even been invited on trips!  Thing is, it's all about time together.  It's an investment.  Look, if you heard about some of the food people made when they hunted, you'd probably start hunting yourself!

I think a lot of people don't understand this.  They think hunting is a bunch of rednecks out shooting.  They don't understand that this tradition is taught and passed down.  They don't understand how special it is for a dad to take his son or daughter out hunting for the first time.  Yes, I said daughter.  Girls hunt too!  This is about time and we really don't have a lot of it together do we?

Our customer, Archie, this morning.