Getting Ready to Hunt!

It’s been a whirlwind since the beginning of the year. Selling a house, buying a house, moving, finding some work, building a wood shed, installing a wood stove, buying a tractor, getting some chickens, getting some cats, homeschooling our boys, processing 50 pounds of apples, making more soap…sheesh!

And now we’re getting ready to hunt. The first one for my oldest son Grant.

Just got to teach him how to sight in his newly acquired rifle from his great Grand Dad. Grant and I took turns shooting a .270 caliber rifle my Grand Father made for him and presented it to him on his birthday. He didn’t think it was for him at first, but was smiling ear to ear. The rifle is a special left handed variant (Grant’s a lefty) with a shorter barrel and less weight designed for youth shooters. We also have a nice area to shoot from our property with a tall backstop, lots of deer droppings all around the field too. The target we were shooting at was set out to about 100 yards and we where shooting 150 grain soft points. After some refinement, we got the rifle dialed in pretty well; at least 1 inch from the point of aim at 100 yards. The last shots were near the bulls-eye in the center and bottom left. Shoots pretty good, but recoils pretty hard. I thought poor Grant was going to get scoped, but he did great and kept his composure and his balance.

There are a lot of deer up here in the Palouse range and we see them out and about almost daily. They love the garbanzo bean fields. Hunting is more of a challenge up here, because of privately owned land in Potlatch. You can get a permit, but it’s not cheap. A two hour drive to White Bird is possible, but i would rather find a spot to scout near our home. There’s also the St. Joe National forest which is about an hour away, my only fear is it will be over crowded with hunters. We’ll see what happens and we’ll certainly have a grand old adventure where ever we end up going.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Snowy Fun Day

We spent the last 20 or so years in Texas which really doesn’t get much snow, just ice on occasion. A few mornings back we got enough snow (about 6 inches) to have fun with. At first I had the idea to blow up the inner tube so the boys could go sledding. Then another idea popped into my head:
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snowyBeastYep, sometimes the crazy ideas in my head lead to some good fun, albeit more risk for injury and other things that a dad doesn’t think about when concocting brainy ideas for my kids to partake in. In this particular case, the only thing that was hazardous was the horse turds buried under the snow. My youngest son declared that he is a “Snowy Beast” after I drug him through the snow a few times. Of course my other son saw what we were doing through the house window and promptly got his snow gear on and went outside for his turn. I bet if we had neighbors I could probably charge $$$ for all of their kids to ride the “Cherry Express”. Good thing we don’t, I’d probably get sued sometime later. Anyway, we had fun for a few hours. Next month, I’ll get their courage up for some other dumb but fun activity to do in the snow. I know, I’ll have to get them some skis! Here is a small video…

 

 

 

 

 

We didn’t bust

Just got internet up and running, time for reflection…

You know, during a 3 day 1700 mile trek across America one has a lot to think about. Things like:

  • Can i make it to the next truck stop before i run dry?
  • How is my trailer holding up?
  • Walkie talkie chatter from the wife, “The dog just barfed!”
  • God, this hotel smells like an ash tray.
  • Kids swapping between my truck and Kelly’s car every time we stop.
  • The dog peeing on the hotel room floor as soon as we get in the room.

It all started July 2nd, when i pulled out of the driveway with a massively heavy “ball n’ chain” 16 ft trailer packed to the gills with all the stuff we couldn’t put in the larger pup trailer.

Thank god for Audible and the book “The Fall of the Governor” to keep me somewhat sane during those last 3 days.

We arrived at the homestead on the 4th of July close to 8 pm. We were going to stay the night north of Boise at a hotel, but i got out voted to keep pressing on. (another 3 hours of driving). Once we finally got there, i started singing, “I’ll be comin’ round the mountain…” over the walkie, but i think my wife was out of range or was ignoring me. I got no response.

The property was overgrown, chock full of weeds and hay that needs cut. Hot and dry here too, high was over 100 which is abnormal for Idaho. Over the last two months with no people nature got busy. Everything inside the house was ok except a small crack in the ceiling.

Another has made it a home as well…right outside the kitchen window. Sitting on 4 blue eggs. More to come later.

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The hardest part about changing your life…

Is leaving the things behind that you know provide security and piece of mind.

I would have to say that the hardest thing i had to do today was to give my two week notice to a company i really enjoy working for. Why on Earth would I give up a good job, with good benefits and profit sharing? I must be out of my freaking mind, right?

Well, it’s not always about the money, although having that freedom is nice. It’s more about the freedom to do what we want to do with our lives. I finally realized that, after almost 20 years in software development. A human being wasn’t meant to sit behind a computer screen punching keys all day, or sacrificing body, mind and soul to meet a deadline and make others rich in the process.

That being said, my career has provided me and my family the means to make this change and for that I am thankful. The next month will be a hectic one while we move up to the homestead for good.

Anyone need an Android app made?

A visit to the homestead

We left the great state of Texas for a grueling 1700 mile drive to Idaho pulling a 16′ trailer with some of our worldly possessions. The first day we made it to Colorado Springs and stayed the night there at the LaQuinta Inn (great hotel for pet owners). We were tired and hungry after almost 12 hours of driving. For a treat we splurged a little bit and dined at Carrabba’s. Amazing food there.

The next day we drove to Broomfield, CO to meet my Grandfather for lunch. Earlier in the week, he called and wanted to know if I wanted his .338-06 Mauser 98 he built. That’s a silly question, of course i do. What i didn’t know is that he also gave me his old hunting rifle, a Ruger M77 25-06 that he had for over 40 years and two pump action .22 rifles for the boys. Wow, i felt honored to accept these, and will definitely put them to good use in Idaho; that i have no doubt.

I felt bad about having to leave so soon to get back on the road again. We only stayed a few hours, but we had another 8 hours of driving through Wyoming to the next hotel stop in Utah. While there I noticed that as we left the winds were howling in Colorado around 40 mph. I could only imagine what the winds were doing in Wyoming. I was getting anxious about how the trailer would ride because i didn’t know which direction they were blowing. I’m glad i loaded all the heavy stuff on the bottom, like your suppose to right?

Wyoming was brutal….

In a way, we got lucky and ended up driving into the wind; however, the electronic sign posts were flashing the wind speed of 40 mph, and then 50 mph and then 55 mph with some warning about “if you have a light trailer turn around” or something like that. The drive was slower than normal with the wind hitting my truck head on. Fuel consumption was more noticeable, the MPG reading went from 15 to 11.

We finally made it to The Three Sisters at nightfall, and continued to push on to Utah. We finally reached hotel around mid-night in Brigham Utah. The Days Inn hotel was a dump, making a note to never go there again.

Early morning, 2 am.  Went out to check on the truck, just had a nagging feeling that something wasn’t right. Disturbed the wife, she probably thought i’m crazy.

5 am rise and got breakfast at the next McDonald’s down the road. We should be at the homestead around 2 pm. The drive through Boise to McCall was gorgeous, McCall itself was a pretty neat little town. Will have to come back and visit more since its going to be fairly close to us.

Finally made it to our destination, time to unpack and get some things organized. Our stay was only two days and then we headed back to Texas to put the house up for sale and sort out our other affairs. We didn’t want to leave, but we knew the next trip was the last one. Here is a nice picture of the area, just after a snow storm blew in late April while we were there.

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A break in the clouds

At some time in your life, you reach a certain level of understanding and enlightenment. For me, this occurred in mid-life around my 40th year of living on this rock we call Earth.

What enlightenment is that you ask?

The realization that:

  • There is more to experience in life other than being plugged into some form of electronic device, whether its a smartphone, TV, Xbox, iPad or PC running the latest video game.
  • That you’ll never be at peace running on the endless treadmill of making more money.
  • That the passions of our youth become diminished or forgotten because we’ve grown up.
  • That life really is short and somehow we think that we’ll live forever and have plenty of time to pursue that dream.
  • There are signs to be read each day, even though they may be subtle, one cannot mistake the frequency by which they occur.
  • That we should seize the opportunity to do the things we truly enjoy and without regret or fear of the unknown.
  • That there is a break in the clouds, and now is the time to change your life for the better.