Praise the Lord!

Deer hunting season is over! I have my husband back!

At least until turkey season…

Whitetail Fever apparently causes dementia

Deer hunting season is a big deal in our home. Its proceeded by weeks of preparation – camouflage clothes litter the laundry area in order to become washed scent-free… guns are cleaned and lightly oiled… bow strings are checked and rechecked… room is made in the freezer for the stocking of fresh venison.

To say that Sean is preoccupied during this time would be like saying Santa wears a red suit.

Never more has that been more obvious than the last week.

I went grocery shopping two weeks ago, the night before the season opened, and when I returned Sean asked how hunting went

Um, yeah, it was vicious hunting out those grocery bargains…

Fast forward to this past Tuesday. Sean was off for the day and decided to go out hunting and he took Quinn with him. They got showered and dressed, both completely scent-free, gathered all required equipment, including books and snacks for Quinn to enjoy.

The plan came to a screeching halt when Sean couldn’t find his keys. It started innocently enough with a casual, “Have you seen my keys?”… It didn’t take long until he was sighing and huffing around the house blaming the cats, the sweet 23 month old napping peacefully… We looked high and low, up and down and all around the mulberry bush.

After approximately 45 minutes of trauma, he walked out with the keys. They had been in his pants pocket the entire time.

Yeah, that’s right – in.his.pants. The laughing from that covered several days of laughter.

I had a pleasant evening with the other three kids and had them in bed, when Sean and Quinn got home that same night. Sean immediately started asking me questions:

What would you do if you were out in the woods with no cell phone signal?
And five miles from the nearest ranger station?
And no one was driving out in that area?
And you locked your keys in the car?

“The Car” he was referring to was my van.

They had no choice but to bust out my back side window with a rock.

My poor car! It now has a tarp duct-taped to that window. If you squint hard enough, it almost looks like a tinted window. Almost.

Okay, who am I kidding – it looks like a busted out window covered with a tarp and duct-tape. And it will continue to do so for a bit, since insurance doesn’t cover busting out your own window.

Its gonna be a long deer season. But believe me when I say that I’m going to get a lot of mileage out of this one.

I hear Billy Joel playing in the background

First off, y’all are so sweet. I feel so silly when I get to thinking about stuff like stats and subscriptions. But y’all are sweet and true enough to remind me to just be me. ~thanks

(Now I’ve got that Billy Joel song swirling around in my head. “Don’t go changin’ to try to please me… I love you just the way you are!”

Okay, gag, I can’t carry a tune in writing either.)

Moving forward.

My home (except for Declan and me) has turned into another coughing, snotty nose fest. Seamus had it first, then Sean, then Abbie and briefly, Quinn.

We made it through the entire summer without crazy illnesses. But now we are back to the germ-fests…

I have mentioned Abigael’s coughing fits before. I’m still convinced it has to do something with the whooping cough she had 3 years ago. She is dealing with one tonight. They get so bad, that even though she has no other symptoms, she has to miss school. Nothing will stop them. Sean prayed over her back in May, and literally, she had no coughing spells from May until this weekend. For her, that was huge!

So I am awake, and listening to my sweet girl coughing, unable to sleep. It is such a hard thing for a mother to not be able to take suffering (slight as it may be) away from her child.

This illness also coincided with the opening of deer hunting season in Tennessee. Sean was determined to be out there in the field. So, imagine his dismay when he came down with a cold. He is not one to take medicine. But this weekend he took more meds than I have witnessed him take combined during the entire 10 years of our marriage.

And so our hunter made it out to the woods all weekend and even tonight. We are looking forward to some backstraps and “deer steaks”. He has been seeing some nice deer, but has been unable to get a good shot. Seeing the deer is a great improvement over last year. He was spoiled by his Wisconsin hunting. Up there, the deer practically jump out at you. For Sean, hunting in Tennessee has been like learning to hunt all over again.

~~~~~~~~

I was catching up on some blog reading tonight and Meredith at Like Merchant Ships has done it again. I love her tips for frugal living. Her home is so lovely and she has the most interesting tips for living beautifully with out paying beautifully.

My mom is wanting to do something with her kitchen cabinets. And when I saw Meredith’s tip, I knew I had to pass it on to my mom. But then I thought maybe some of you are wanting to brighten your cabinets. If so, go check out this post at Meredith’s. If you decide to do it, be sure to post before and after photos!

*updated to add: 5 Minutes for Mom has 2 great giveaways going on now.
They are giving away a PINK Dyson! and a WD Passport Portable Hard Drive.
If you win either, remember how much you all claimed to love me!! ;0)

The freezer is stocked

Sean got home tuesday, from his hunting trip, with 4 deer! My kitchen table was a butcher’s block for two days, while he prepared the meat for individual meals. Most people have never tried venison. Or if they have, their experience is like my first try:

kitchen table circa 1978:
Mom: “How did ya’ll like your hamburgers?”
Me: (afraid of being to honest, but frankly they tasted freezer burnt) “They were… good…”
Mom: (proud of herself for “pulling one over on us”) “That was venison.” *Confused looks from us* “Deer meat…”

That was my last venison experience: gamey, weird and tricked!

Until we moved to Wisconsin. Everyone hunts. We were those “weird east-coast folks” who didn’t know a musket from a muskee. In fact, when we bought our home, we were hard pressed to find a house, in any price range, without at least one buck head mounted on the wall.

We made it three years before Sean went out hunting. His good friend took him out and immediately, he was hooked.

However, I had to be slowly introduced to the idea and be given an adjustment period to get used to the deer being brought home, so proudly, in the back of my husband’s truck.

Immediately, though, I saw a plus: Sean cooked the venison! I didn’t have to touch it, look at it, nothin’, in order to get the meat onto the table.

And really, and truly, it is the tastiest meat ever. It is lean; it is tender, it is healthy (ie – no artificial hormones) and it is inexpensive.

We (okay, my husband) grill it, roast it, slow cook it (although I don’t have one of these) and never, have we had a bad meal with it.

Best of all, my husband loves that he can literally, put the food on the table.

I know that some people take issue with hunting. I think that is unfortunate. All of the hunters that I have met (and trust me, in northern Wisconsin, you meet A LOT of hunters) are some of the most ethical, kind-hearted, down-to-earth people you will ever know. (actually, for full disclosure, I, myself, have my own bow, though I have not had a chance to go out with it on a hunt…)

If you ever have a chance, try some venison.

And if you need a good venison recipe, let me know.

However, I have no advice on decorating with or hanging those buck mounts…

Blessings,
~K