A lifestyle blog about life and living in Southeast, Alaska.
WE THINK HE WISHED FOR A MOOSE
September 18, 2016
The morning that Charlie woke up on his 5th birthday. I heard him come up stairs and turn on his Wild Kratts show and I excitedly jumped out of bed and gave him a big hug and said "Happy Birthday Charlie man, now you are five!" Charlie quickly told me, "Mom, I don't turn five until my candles are blown out tonight."
I liked his way of thinking. It's a little symbolic after you blow your candles out...now, you're officially a year older. And when you make that wish before you blow your candles out it also signifies the official turning point. But you must always keep it a secret my mother would always tell me. Maybe we will start this little tradition with our family. And maybe I just won't have candles at my birthday so I can then say that I am 31 forever.
The morning after Charlie's birthday was the first day of moose season and my husband, my in-laws, and my husbands cousin Tina all headed up to moose camp. Stuart woke at 5:00am hastily getting the last of his clothes packed and woke me up and said "Where is my moose tag?" I looked at him with groggy eyes and thought "Are you serious?" But I had it in the file cabinet in our room and he found it under a stack of receipts that I save for tax season. As I heard him zip his pack and with moose tag in hand he came in and gave me a kiss and I wished him good luck. Moose hunters in this valley usually spend 3-4 days out at moose camp and then come back in and reload with groceries and other necessities, then head back up to camp. They repeat the cycle until the get a moose (or not). Last year, my father-in-law Charlie shot a moose just a little over a week into the opening. But I didn't expect to see or hear (no cell service) from Stuart for a couple days.
I picked Charlie up from preschool and he was so excited to get back home so he could play with all the new toys he received the night before. It was also Loralai's nap time. When we got home she got her blanket and we read a couple books before nursing her to sleep. But as I was rocking her, I received a text from my husband around 1:15pm that said "Come to Fish and Game." I was a little stunned because that only could mean one thing, Stuart or my father-in-law got a moose! After hunters shoot a moose up the valley you must immediately get it turned in to FIsh and Game to make sure it's legal (there are restrictions on what moose you can shoot, depicted by the antlers). Fish and Game also takes the lower jaw to forensically tell how old the moose is and gather other information. Once I got Stuart on the phone, he told me that him and Tina pulled up to the first swamp and low and behold he spotted the moose right away. He called it in, it came closer, he shot it, it died quick, and then started field dressing it. Quickly making their way back to moose camp to gather my in-laws so they could help haul it out to town.
So a mere 12 hours after our little Charlie blew his candles out and "officially" turned five his dad shoots a moose about a half an hour into the 2016 moose hunting season. And tonight as we were processing the meat on our big counter in our kitchen my husband and I looked at little Charlie and said "What DID you wish for on your birthday?" he looked at us with his beautiful green eyes, gave us a big grin, and then skipped back into the living room to play with his birthday toys. I guess we will never know.
Warning: just a couple of graphic images below.
I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!