Kelly’s Corner – More Than Just Hunting…It’s A Tradition

Hunting, for many families is more like a holiday, a yearly tradition. It’s a time of gathering together with dads, mom, sons, daughters, grandfathers, grandmothers, aunts and uncles, and although there are many common bonds between all of them, the one that has brought them all together during THIS particular time of year is “opening morning” of rifle season.
Although I am partial to bow hunting and all that that entails, I too, love to rifle hunt and my favorite part is opening morning. In our house it’s a huge deal. I mean a really big deal. So big that every year, as the day gets closer, it’s all we prepare for. Many a trip is made to the local Walmart for more ammo, more camo, and hand warmers. It’s not rifle season until we’ve each went out and bought some cool new Under Armour Blaze Orange cap or the newest Under Armour beanie. It’s tradition. Yes it’s true and everyone here will agree that I have enough camo to completely dress a third world country but something about mentioning that rifle season is coming up and I instantly need a new fleece “something.” It’s colder than bow season and by gollys I need to be warm sitting out in that blind. That’s tradition too.
It’s always fun the night before opening morning because we, as a family, sit around the kitchen table plotting and mapping out who’s going where and with whom. We make a plan and we STRATEGIZE just how the whole opening morning deal is going down. I normally like to go out by myself because after only five years of hunting now I consider myself to be pretty experienced and I would rather sit in the blind alone. I have a tendency to take A LOT of “gear” with me and really there is only enough room in my blind for me…and my “gear.” By the way, during that time when we’re strategically figuring out just what the heck we’re doing the next morning we are also, all of us, going through and organizing our hunting bags and making sure we have everything in order before we head out. I might add that I am one of the FEW, and I mean FEW, maybe one of the ONLY ONES, that has her “gear” organized. I get made fun of on a daily basis for my OCD-ness but let one of my tribe lose a grunt call or a doe bleat and who do you think they come to for a spare? You guessed it. I usually have at least two of everything and when things can’t be found in the eleventh hour before opening morning, “I” become the Walmart.
After the plan is in place we’re usually so pumped we can’t even think about going to sleep. It’s almost like Christmas morning for us. I am totally serious when I say that I am so excited that I can’t sleep. I have been known to, and actually I do it every year, lay my exact wardrobe out the night before, boots, beanie, everything because my plan is to get up early and relax. I am the “early riser”, the “alarm clock”, the “merry sunshine” of opening morning. I’ve always been a morning person but come mid November I am THEE “opening morning” morning person. I spring out of bed BEFORE my alarm goes off, while everyone else is hitting the snooze on their cell phones repeatedly. The house sounds like a medley of waterfalls and harps, retro funk, and Colt Ford. As bad as that is to even imagine, it still does NOT wake anyone up. Therefore, I’m always the one that makes sure we’re all up and getting around.
Opening morning is pretty standard though. I have to enjoy a nice cup of coffee, relax, and get my head in the game before I get dressed in all my camo while my husband and the boys jump out of bed, throw their clothes on and hit the door running. I have my clothes laid out in perfect order the night before, while they run around upon waking like chickens with their heads cut off searching in buckets and drawers for that ONE jacket or pair of gloves that hasn’t been seen all season. I wake up chipper and excited and although they are excited as well, their demeanors are predominately sour and grouchy. But once everyone is awake, dressed and our guns loaded, it’s all business and we’re ready to go out and get this party started. We head in our different directions, whether it be the blind, a stand, or a climber and we sit there until a shooter comes by or we get a text saying that someone else got something and they need help. Either way, I always welcome both and nothing compares to the excitement and memories opening morning brings and the tales we pack back when we return back to camp. Hunting as family is my favorite tradition.

May 24, 2016 | Category: Blog, Kelly's Corner | Comments: none


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