Have you made a list of New Year's resolutions? It's that time of year to write down the things you want to change, and get busy altering your character, behavior or negligent chores. I've never been big on resolutions. As Popeye would say, "I am what I am." This year I thought I'd give it a try, so here goes nothing.
Here's my list of hunting-related New Year's resolutions:
1. Spend more time hunting near home. In 2011 I only hunted deer a few days near home. The rest of the season I was playing road warrior hunting all across the country. That's ridiculous! There's great deer hunting literally minutes from home.
2. Boil my skulls out sooner. Each year I put off boiling the trophies I've shot, and last year I didn't get the last batch finished until mid-July. That's stinking ridiculous, so this year I'm back on a spring deadline.
3. Take my kids hunting more. I plan a big hunting trip each year for each of my kids, but for 2012 I'm going to try and put two together for each; they aren't getting any younger.
4. Plan more stops at home between fall hunts. The past couple years have been just crazy. Once I hit the road in October, I rarely land at home for more than a few hours until Christmas. I need a few more days to catch up on family—and grab clean skivvies!
5. Try more wild game recipes. Our freezer is brimming with elk, deer and pronghorn. We feed on chili, fajitas and stroganoff often, but it's time to step outside the box. Can you say "venison with piri-piri"? Me neither, but I might give it a try.
6. Facebook more often. Got you on that one! I already facebook more than a grown man my age should, but it does give me another avenue to keep you informed and brimming with new hunting ideas. (P.S. Most of my hunts are on my "public figure" Facebook account).
7. Cut down on caffeine. I got you on another one! Yes, I should cut down on caffeine, and I started this year by drinking more green tea. But come on—somebody has to keep the folks at Mountain Dew employed in this economic downfall.
8. Drive less in the middle of the night. The caffeine binge goes hand in hand with my bull-headed character of taking off after a hunt and either driving to my next hunting destination, or heading straight home through the night. I pulled my latest midnight run just before Christmas. I arrived at home at 4:30 a.m. after a 6-hour drive on ice. Can you say "butt paralysis"?
9. Consider texting. Of course this only works if I turn my cell phone on more than twice a week. I'll think about it, but really, isn't texting a thing of the past? We invented phones to get past telegraph and Morse code-type communication? Call me when my phone is on, please.
10. Be more social. This one is for my wife. When I get off the road in the fall, I'm so happy to be home I rarely like to go out. I'm happy discussing issues with my dog and the horses. But for you, honey, I'll try to be more outgoing when I'm at home. Honest.
That's it. Those are my resolutions. I hope you have a happy New Year.
Share your New Year's resolutions in the comment box below.