the deer is here

There are many potential “first post of the year” ideas floating around in my head: reflections on 2011? goals and dreams for 2012? pictures from our holiday road trip? practical financial tips we’ve implemented lately? fun plans for visiting cousins soon? favorite books from the past six months? important life lessons? telling everyone about all the free books I’ve agreed to read and review here? fun crafts I made for Christmas presents? our new fish tank? the delicious meals we’ve eaten on a ridiculously small grocery budget? finishing one of the 12 half-written articles floating around my draft folder?
I’ve never ever had a problem coming up with ideas for any project in my life, writing online included. Instead, I have serious problems with procrastination and letting myself get too overwhelmed and paralyzed thinking of all the things I could do without actually doing anything. It’s been an issue my whole life. But the paralysis of pondering this year’s first post, which is not that big of a deal in the first place, was ended when a very noteworthy event took place in our home last night.

There is a back story here. Last November, Aaron shot a trophy 10-point whitetail buck scoring almost 150 inches (*CORRECTION: 154 1/2 inches*) with his then-new bow. He wanted to get the head mounted, and I agreed to this idea on the condition that we would remodel our kitchen before it was finished. I also stipulated that the mount would have to go in the basement or a “man room” of our next house. I can’t put it in the hunting-themed room of our current house, because it remains the potential nursery if we were to have children while living here. What if the head fell off the wall and an antler speared our baby? Like I said earlier, I think too much and it causes problems sometimes. Well, in case you can’t tell from the lack of updates, the kitchen progress has seriously halted, and I think I’ve been unconsciously avoiding anything that gets us near completion as if I could hold off the inevitable. But now the day I have dreaded is here: the deer head is back from the taxidermist and in our house. Since Aaron didn’t tell me he had picked it up, when he brought it in the house I thought (for just a moment) he was bringing an actual mature buck into the living room. I actually screamed and covered my eyes for at least 30 seconds.  Then Aaron hauled it upstairs, so I’m guessing he’s using one hand for typing a paper while gently, gleefully stroking the fur with the other.

First photo of the deer was with a cell-phone during the post-mortem river rescue…
Then a recovery shot on dry ground
And now, after waiting a year for the necessary drying-out and whatever else it is those taxidermists do, we have a deer head ready to mount. Discussions regarding the actual placement are ongoing.
I just want to know… why does his nose have to be so shiny and lifelike?

He might go in the living room or the kitchen. I’m hoping for the kitchen, as it would be less visible to my piano students. Either way, we will see it from the dinner table, so I hope we have actually finished the meat from this specific animal already. I fully believe hunting is one of the healthiest activities my husband could have, and I’m glad for so much free-range, lean, red meat. But I will still feel a little strange slurping my venison chili underneath this deer’s blank, glassy stare.

15 thoughts on “the deer is here

  1. This post made me laugh so hard!!!!!! Love the Hummels! Maybe you could decorate the dear for different seasons and holidays, you know, like those geese some people put on their porches.

  2. I have a strict “I can’t know which specific animal I’m eating” rule. I love my husband’s venison, but I have no interest in seeing it living and then know that it is that specific deer I’m eating. We have the same discussion when we talk about getting chickens for meat. It’d be fine if we’d butcher 2 or more at a time. Then I wouldn’t have a specific animal’s face in my head. But if I know a carcass corresponded directly to ChickenFace – no can do.

    • I am so with you about not knowing where it came from! We ended up taking this deer to a butcher because he was so big and we wanted some sausage and jerky, so I know exactly when we are eating it. People have been eating their own animals for ages and God gave them to us for food when we need it, but I like thinking meat comes from a store and not an animal that tried to run away.

  3. Speaking as the girl who only brought back spikes small enough to stick on a headband, I think his trophy’s a beaut! However curious or creepy it may look, at least you didn’t watch the field-dressing, right? And of course, a freezer full of venison is the best part.

    Good luck in finding a place for it!

    – Joy

  4. Thanks for chiming in! I love the comments. Though I’ve only been out once (for Turkeys, and we saw nothing) I’m totally intrigued by hunting and I watch the video updates on http://www.midwestwhitetail.com with Aaron almost every evening. And of course, I’m so proud of him for getting a great deer… I’m just struggling to accept the idea of keeping it in the main living area of my house!

    And no, I do not watch the field dressing or assist with the processing in any way. Tried that once and I still feel queasy thinking about it.

  5. Abby, we’ve had a lot of turkeys in our woods lately, but no deer. I am just thinking about you with a song ringing in my brain: “I use antlers in all of my de-co-rating; oh what a guy, that Aar-on!

  6. Pingback: holy week and the death of dreams « a cheerful heart has a continual feast

    • The deer population is crazy high … Their options are starve, get hit by cars, or get killed by a hunter and have all the free-range lean organic red meat used to feed people. So yeah, hunting is pretty healthy.

      Unless you are 100% vegan there is no room for any discussion here. This is much more humane than anything you get from a store or farmer.

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