I’m not going to add a lot of words to this post, but I wanted to do a 2017 year in review just using pictures and videos. I’ll add a little context to each picture (or pictures). Overall we had a pretty great 2017 and I’m working on making 2018 even better.
I took my brother and his son to our property in Mississippi for my nephew’s first hunting experience. He didn’t do any shooting, but I was able to harvest my first buck off that property.
I am originally from Gretna, Louisiana and lived in New Orleans until I was almost 7 years old. I have fond memories of my parents taking my brother and I to parades on St. Charles Ave. and I am hoping that my kids will have the same memories. We met up with one of my college buddies (pictured top right in blue shirt) and his wife and kids. The bottom picture of my wife and daughter says it all about how much we enjoyed it.
My wife and I both have horses so we figured it was time to get a pony for the kids. She is a great pony for them, even though she has bucked Parker off and rolled over on him, but these kids are tough and get right back on her.
One weekend we didn’t have anything to do so I decided we would make a day trip up to Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch and Cave. For a few hours we drove through this ranch feeding animals from the truck. My wife just about lost her mind when we turned a corner and there were zebras. There is also a really beautiful cave system nearby that we took a tour through. The kids did awesome considering it was a lot of walking and some tight quarters at time.
We took a quick weekend trip with my mom and nephews to South Padre Island for some fun in the sun and sand. Texas doesn’t have the best beaches in the country, but they are considered public highways in Texas so you can drive your truck down the beach about as far as you want to get away from crowds.
We decided to get Rambo (dog on the left) a sister. We adopted her from a high kill shelter about a day before she was to be put down. She is deaf, but honestly one of the best dogs I have ever been around. Her name is Dolly and she is family now.
In July we do what every red blooded American does, we hit the lake. My father in law has a really nice boat and we load it up and hit the water for the day.
The Great American Eclipse happened in August of 2017 so we decided to go see it. My son is really into space and I couldn’t let that opportunity go by without him experiencing it. We used to live in Nashville, TN and still had friends there so it made for the perfect trip. We got to see a truly cosmic event and catch up with our best friends in Nashville.
August was also a rough time in 2017 for some people. Hurricane Harvey hit at the end of August and caused catastrophic flooding. A few buddies and I couldn’t just hang back and not help, so we loaded up my buddies boat and went to help. I met some of the nicest people while doing boat rescues from Houston to Port Arthur. This is my friend Ryan and I in his bay boat cruising down a road in about 7 feet of water heading into neighborhoods to get people out of their houses. Pretty surreal.
We put in a zipline in the backyard for the kids. They love the crap out of this thing. Its also a hit at birthday parties.
One of my good buddies got married and before his wedding the wife and I managed to get a hike in at Lost Maples State Park. The hiking is easy and its a really great park, if you are ever in the Hill Country in Texas near Vanderpool you have to check it out.
October means bow season and although I didn’t shoot a deer, any chance to get in the woods is worth it.
November was the month of sickness it seemed like. We had strep throat, then scarlet fever, then strep again and then I think someone got the flu. We ended up having Thanksgiving by ourselves and my wife whipped up a lot of food in no time for it.
I did quite a bit of duck hunting in December. I tried to video some hunts which almost worked. Unfortunately my camera flew off one time while shooting. I’m going to have to buy a sturdier mount. It actually snowed in Magnolia for the first time in probably a decade. It snowed at night, but the kids at least got to see snow before it melted a few days later. It also wasn’t the only time they saw snow this winter, it snowed again a few weeks later in January. We also went to the Polar Express near Palestine, TX. You board an old steam engine train and you get served hot cocoa and cookies while they read you the story of The Polar Express.
I’m looking forward to 2018. I have a few new ideas for trips to take with the family that will involve the outdoors and I am going to challenge myself to something new this year regarding hunting. Thanks for reading.
– The Family Outdoorsman