Monday, October 24, 2005


Prickly Pear Cactus

Do you remember that old campfire song, Home on the Range: 
Oh give me a home where the buffalo roam
Where the deer and the antelope play...

Hello!?  Who wrote that song?  Were they nuts?  This is where the deer and the antelope play, and its covered with fricken cactus!  This is not what I want in the front yard of MY  home, thanks but no thanks!  You can't run barefoot or roll around in it.  (trust me, I've tried!).  I think if I were never to see another cactus plant in my life I could still live a happy and content life.  In fact, to say that I hate cactus would probably be one of the biggest understatements of the year!

Sunday, October 16, 2005


My son Zack bagged a 4x6 mule deer this morning.  It was his first buck, and quite a decent sized one.  I don't know who is prouder, Zack or his father!   I have to say Zack was a real trooper, he works until 1am, comes home, goes to bed, gets up to go out hunting at 4:30am, hunts until 11am and then has to be back at work by 4pm.   I don't know what he's happier about, getting a bigger buck than his dad, or being able to sleep in from now on.

 The neighbors are used to us bringing home big game and hanging it in the garage.  Being part of a big hunting community, the children flock over to point and giggle while the grown-ups trade stories.  Today the little girl from down the street and her younger sister showed up for the first time.  They were followed by their cat Toonces, who is no stranger to our yard, which it sees as a huge community litter box.  Thinking the cat wanted a closer look at the buck which was in the process of being skinned, the little neighbor girl scooped the cat up and held it closer.  The cat caught sight of the buck and absolutely freaked out!  I don't think that cat will be squatting in my yard ever again!

Saturday, September 24, 2005


I tagged along with my husband and his friend this morning in search of the elusive bull elk.  There was no warm up period, no leisurely walk in the crisp morning air.  We went straight up, straight away!  And these guys were power walking with 3 foot strides in comparison to my 1½ foot stride.  After a while they would realize that I had fallen behind and they would wait.  Then, as soon as I would catch up with them, huffing and puffing like an asthmatic, they would take off again before I could even catch my breath.

The guys would whisper up ahead of me, making plans and pointing up.  They would never share their conversation and plans with me.  I think they were afraid I would protest too loudly.  They were, of course, correct because there is no quiet way to say 'Hell NO!'  Was it just me or was it uphill all the way, both ways?  I really hate 'up'.

Our friend is funny.  He has an alarm on his wristwatch.  Every hour on the hour it beeps.  Every hour on the hour the deer and elk knew exactly where we were.  I'm sure they appreciated it.

My husband got caught without toilet paper again.  Oh, he packed it this morning, but left it in the truck.  He asked me if I had it.  Well, no, he packed it, not me.  He asked me if I had the pack of tissue I gave him last week.  Well, no, I gave that to him last weekend.  I ended up giving him a bandana to shred.  Will he ever learn?  Nah, probably not.

Ugh, chola!  I hate chola.  I've created a new game.  Its called 'chola limbo', except there is no bar to shimmie under.  In this version the object of the game is to see who can get the closest to a chola cactus without being stuck.  I lost every single time.  I really REALLY hate chola!

One more day left for archery.  For my friend's sake I hope he doesn't walk up on a big bull or buck right on the hour.  Beep beep!

Saturday, September 10, 2005


You get up in the morning, o'dark hundred, and dress in your Real Tree Mossy Oak Advantage jeans and turtleneck. Its fall turkey season and you're ready.   You want to be able to blend into your surroundings like a ghost.  You drive out to the field where the roost tree stands.  But before walking out to find a good spot to set up, you don your vest and hat.  A short hike and you are smack dab in the middle of turkey territory.  The woods are just beginning to wake up and you are almost twitchy with anticipation.  Slowly, almost teasingly, the sun rises and bathes the woodlands with its warm glow.  You are motionless, you are one with the woods.

Dude, you have a fricken flourescent orange vest on!  You almost glow in the dark.  The only thing you'll blend into is a pumpkin patch. 

Whats un-be-fricken-lievable is the fact that he actually got his turkey a couple of hours after this picture was shot.  Trust me, it wasn't because he blended into his surroundings.  Those turkey probably saw him coming a mile away!  If anything they came closer to get a better look at the Great Pumpkin.

Friday, April 15, 2005


My husband went hunting this morning.  He had the day off and instead of spending it with me, taking me around to get some pictures... he went out to buddy up with a friend who had a spring turkey tag.  I have been itching to get 'downrange' for some shots, and when it finally opens up and he has the day off.... he goes out with a friend instead.  Whats up with that?

There's something about the guy that keeps him in high demand during the various hunting seasons.  This man is very adament about wearing the proper clothing, no jewelry, no perfumes, no make up, nothing that will make un-natural noises or scents.  His sence of hearing is amazing, he prides himself for being able to hear a mouse fart at 300 yards... that I'm sure is an exaduration, but probably not by much.  Funny thing is... he sounds like an elephant walking through the woods, he seems to kick every rock and snap every branch, but goodness knows if someone with him does, he'll turn with an exasperated look on his face and motion for silence.  He uses special laundry soap for his hunting clothes, he has earth scented body wash and shampoo.  Once he even bought some deer pee to cover his scent (I went totally balistic when I found the little spray bottle in the frige with our food!  He's not brought home any since then). 

With all this ultra-careful attention to mask his scent and blend in... he still brushes his teeth with Cool Mint Crest.  Now just because mint is a natural scent I don't think it would blend in with the woodland fragrances.  AND.... I swear there's something about the outdoors that does something to his internal organs because he cannot hold anything in.  He's either peeing, pooping or farting every couple of miles along the trail.  My husband says that its a natural smell which is why he can get away with emparting his odor in the woods without spooking the animals.  Oh, I've no doubt they smell him alright, I think they just all rush upwind to get away from the stench, which unfortunately for them puts them right infront of him.  I won't do it in the woods.  I'm too paranoid about squatting over a rattlesnake, which is something my husband has actually done by the way... click here for the story... or getting caught with my pants down by a bear, or even worse... other hunters! 

So anyhow, I'm pouting today.  I really REALLY want to take my new camera down range, where the deer and the antelope play.... And the elk, and the eagles, and the beavers, and the badgers, and the turkeys........  If anyone could get me up close enough to get some photographs of the local wildlife its my stinkin', noisy husband, who really is the best tracker I know... but who'd rather be out with his hunting buddies than his wife.  That is absolutely outrageous!

Wednesday, April 6, 2005

CABELAS, and a near disaster.

I finally got to go to Cabelas in February.... twice in fact.  Once on our way out to Ft. Knox, Kentucky, and then again on our way back home.  Was it worth the wait?  You betcha!  My husband spent way too much money there... and I let him!  Mostly because he bought me a window mount for my camera and some those really cool shot glasses I've been nagging him about for years.  So yes, I'm a happy camper at last!

I smell like elk sausage right now.  I smell good actually, its smoked summer sausage.  Mmmmmm.  We have 4 left of our orininal 28 sticks.  We have to get rid of them like NOW!  Want some?  I went out to the garage to get some burger from the freezer and discovered to my horror that the freezer chest had been unplugged.  It probably happened on Sunday when we had the extention cord running through for the power  washer.  Fortunately everything on the lower level was still frozen solid, but the two tubs we had on the top, and the last of our elk sausage, was thawed and we have to use it tonight or waste it... its too thawed to refreeze safely.  All I can say is... thank goodness I discovered it today, while it was still salvagable.  Can you imagine the mess I would have had later on in the week?

Friday, January 28, 2005


My husband went to Cabelas
nd all he bought for me was...
Bear Poo, Elk Doo
And Deer Doodles!

Saturday, January 1, 2005


Its been ages since I have been out in the woods and even though I was sick, I jumped at the opportunity to take a drive down-range with Steve.  We didn't have passes so we could only go so far, but that was fine with me, I needed to get out.  Once we got as far as we could drive, we got out to walk in.  Steve suggested that we take the road rather than to try hiking up the hill since I was still feeling the effects of the bug that had hit me during the week.  That was fine with me, I learned long ago to dread the mention of the word 'UP'.  It was a bad word in my book.  So we hiked along the road, crunching in the snow and ice.  The sun was warm, it was a beautiful New Year's day.  But then it happened, we ran out of road, and it was either go 'UP' or go back.  Steve suggested that we cut around to get 'HIGHER' so we could see better.  I wasn't ready to go back so I agreed.  We were half way up the cliff before I realized that 'HIGHER' was just another word for 'UP'.  Steve had tricked me!

So anyhow we're hiking up a hillside covered with snow, which is a good thing because had I known what was under the snow I would never have attempted to scale the mountain.  It was loose shale and  cactus!  And what wasn't covered with snow covered shale and cactus was covered with scrub-oak, which Steve pushed through and managed to hit me with the backlash every time.  I swear he was trying to hit me. 

And then it happened... almost simultaneously Steve motioned to be silent and still... and my nose started running.  And I'm not talking slow drip, I mean flash flood!  I wiped my nose with my glove and the finger quickly became soaked with snot.  I tried to sniff silently, but lets face it, when your sinuses decide to purge themselves, there's no delicate sniffs involved.  I had to resort to using the next finger of my glove, and then when it became staturated... the next. 

Finally I made the decision to pull out my tissue.  There is no camoflauge tissue... I was stuck with pure white that flashed like a flag in the woods, and I blew!  And the unthinkable happened... I ran out of room on the tissue!  I would have to get another one.  But what to do with the used one, now filled with phlegm?  I rolled it gently into a little package, careful not to crush it and cause seepage... and I placed it in my jacket pocket.  I did the same with the second, and then the third tissue.  I think that I must surely be allergic to elk because it never failed, every time we sneaked up on one, my nose would start running and it takes every ounce of will power not to suck it in and give away our presence.

We ended up going home without a clear sighting but that was okay because I thoroughly enjoy getting out, even if just to walk and look around.  I was a little preoccupied on the walk back though... I didn't want to absent mindedly stick my hand into my jacket pocket and squish the tissues full of snot!  I must have lost at least a pound in weight just in snot alone!