This week’s blog in honor of Thanksgiving is written by a local women and her perspective of Traditions A Field. How hunting with her Father, Mother, and now husband has influenced her as an outdoors-man and help shape her life today. Kara P. lives outside of Wooster Ohio, with her husband Aaron she works as an aquatic biologists for a local fish hatchery. Kara, shares her passions and family traditions as well as a new tradition her and her husband have embarked on this season. They are showing their passion for the outdoors, and for helping local community members. A great reminder this Thanksgiving to think of the big picture, to take a step back from the hustle and bustle, and to hug those we love!
Traditions a field
When you hear the word hunting, what comes to your mind? Trophies on your wall? Harvesting a mature whitetail buck or the strutting Tom? How about your limit of waterfowl? I would be lying if I said this wasn’t my goal, as it is every hunters goal to be successful in the field, but it is not what first comes to my mind when I hear the word hunting. I think of family. I think of time connecting with the Lord and His creation. I think of feelings of tranquility and excitement all mixed together. The experience of a hunt goes much further than the harvest.
My love for the outdoors started at a very young age when my parents would take my sisters and I camping as toddlers, we would go hunting for antler sheds and morel mushrooms in the spring, play in the creek, and help dad find good hunting spots. I would go on some hunts with my dad just to sit, watch, and learn or be his rabbit dog. I always had a love for climbing trees as a youngster, any chance possible I would climb to the highest point possible in a tree to sway back and forth in the wind. It was only a matter of time that the love of climbing trees turned into a love of hunting from a tree. When I was 14 years old I took my hunters safety course and was ready to hunt the woods with my dad and mom. In preparation for the upcoming hunting season, my dad and I hung our first tree stand together, a buddy stand. So my dad could sit with his new hunting buddy and teach and share with me the hunting tradition. Many memories came from that tree stand and most of those didn’t end with a harvest of a deer, but a harvest of memories of a daughter and father enjoying the great outdoors. Since that day, I have hunted from ground blinds my dad and I constructed together, my dad taught me how to use a climber, and I have been blessed to share many harvests with my dad, mom, and husband. Best of all I have hunted that buddy stand many times and harvested some deer out of it I have also taken a youth hunter of a family friend with me to pass on the tradition, and I look forward to the day that I can share that buddy stand with my own hunting buddy.
I am now 25 and am married and this year my dad, husband, and I hung a new stand together, reminding me of the great memories made 11 years ago hanging our first tree stand and all the memories in between. Hunting is not merely a hunt for a trophy, it is a hunt for family time, which in this busy world is hard to come by. A hunt is a morning, an evening, or a whole day with my dad, mom, and now husband away from the hustle and bustle and stresses of life. Watching the warm sun rise waking up the squirrels, chipmunks, and songbirds listening to the music of Mother Nature. Or watching the beautiful colors of a sunset glistening through the woods. No matter if we come home with an animal or not, it was a successful hunt in my mind. Success should not be measured by the amount or size of trophies on the wall or shelf, but rather the people you have to share your time with, the memories you have made, the learning curves you have hurdled, and ultimately doing everything for the Glory of God.
My husband and I are taking this hunting season to a new level. We have started a fundraiser called Hunting for a Cure. We are raising funds for childhood cancer research. We are asking family, friends, and the community to consider pledging my husband or I for every hour of deer hunting we hunt this season. You can check out our community page on Facebook called Hunting for a Cure. We were inspired by a young boy named Wilson who lost his battle with cancer at age 8. Wilson, was one of my customer’s son and was an avid hunter and fisherman, Wilson and I would talk about the upcoming hunting season and shooting his bow from time to time. In Wilson’s passing I felt a call to do something to try to get one step closer to a cure of this dreadful disease. So this hunting season as the family tradition continues a new tradition begins with hunting down a cure. Hunting is more than the harvest of game it is about the harvest of memories with family and friends that will last a lifetime.