Monday, November 10, 2008

Doe, a deer, a female deer.....

Jack and our friend Kevin went deer hunting on Saturday, where Jack got his first deer, a doe. You may not want to read further if you have a problem with Bambi on a dinner plate. The deer population has to be controlled, though, and the best way to do that is to hunt and use the meat for food. The added benefits are that the meat is healthful, low-fat, and nearly free.
When Jack and Kevin were getting the shed ready to skin the deer and break the meat down Chet stood guard over the deer. Sammy and Beagle were way too interested in her to be left alone with her. Chet distracted them by petting them, which Sammy soaked up and Beagle repaid with a lick. Yuck.
Then it was time to get to work to get Fiona ready for dinners and jerky. Jack and Kevin brought her to one of our sheds. Kevin taught Jack how to skin it and take it apart.

I didn't think the kids would be interested in this part, but they all were. Even Crystal (married to Nathan) and Meghan came out to take a peak. The kids stayed in the shed during the whole process, learning all about the process. If we were still homeschoolers it could have been some kind of biology lesson. It still was really, they just don't get school credit for it.

I wasn't fascinated by the whole process. Hunting doesn't bother me, but I don't want to do it myself. So I was inside taking advantage of having a whole day where I didn't have to go anywhere making homemade chicken soup and baking a chocolate cake. But the kids kept interrupting my domestic efforts and asking me to take pictures. I won't show the grisliest of photos here, but Chet, who wants to take the hunter safety course to get his own hunting license, was the one who sawed the head off. Yuck.

Then they wanted pictures with the feet. People actually mount these on wood and then use them as a gun rack. Or they mount them on walls to look like a deer is coming out of the wall.

We won't be doing that. Yuck.
Chet really wanted his picture taken with the head and skin that he was so proud of removing. Then Faith and Kyle and Todd wanted the pictures taken with it too. Yuck.

They asked if I would tan the hide and head for them so they could wrap themselves inside of it and pretend to be a deer. My answer was.....
absolutely....
unequivocally...
NOT!
It is not a good time of year to go parading around as a deer.

Jack had to go to work that afternoon, so he had to get some sleep. The business of breaking down the meat in the house fell to me. There was a time when I would have told you I would never do that. It really wasn't too bad, although I am much happier actually cooking the food and not processing it raw. I prefer to leave the hunting to Jack, and I will take care of the gathering and collecting.

Before you think that look on Patchy's face denotes suffocation, let me clarify it doesn't. He was watching various pieces of deer being cut apart and was worried he wouldn't get any.

I had to leave you with a cute picture after all those, so here is a close-up version of Chet and the dogs. Don't you love the way Beagle is climbing on Sammy in an effort to give Chet a kiss? That little dog tongue sticking out cracks me up, but getting your face licked by a dog??? Yuck.

The deer roast we had for dinner last night tasted really good, though! And there is a certain satisfaction in having a freezer full of meat for the cost (less than $20) of a hunting license.

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