Kristen Berube lives a crazy, laugh-filled life with her outdoorsman husband Remi and their three camo-clad children in Missoula, Montana. A graduate of Montana State University and the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology, she loves being a mom and enjoys hiking, fishing, and camping. “Confessions of a Camo Queen: Living with an Outdoorsman” is her first book. -
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During this time of year, most families are planning summer camping trips and trips to grandma’s house. In our house, we skip summer, and plan for fall. God, help me. Just when I start to get concerned about why the outdoorsman is on the internet all night and making late night phone calls, he makes it all so clear.
Dinner in our home is a big deal. It is a time for the entire family to sit together, talk about the day, and relax as a family unit. I swear we are busier than ever these days, so this small fraction of time in our day to be with those I love the most is a big deal to me. To miss dinner is no small situation. All day long I look forward to seeing all four shiny faces sitting around my table. So this week when the outdoorsman was absent for 3, yes, 3 nights in a row, it was a pretty big deal. To say his presence was missed at the dinner table is an understatement. There was food flying, babies crying, and a mommy sighing. The kids were crazy and acting like starved barbarians. I was eye balling the bottle of wine chilled in the fridge because of said barbarians and the outdoorsman was nowhere to be found. It really is amazing how the dynamic changes with one parent missing in our house. Help!
By evening number 3, I had had it! Trying to juggle 3 small kids alone, 6 dogs, a mini pig and a washing machine explosion is not my idea of a party. Haha! Where o’ where you ask was my partner in crime during this time of crisis? Well... He, of course, was with his other wife- AKA- his hunting partner, discussing hunting tags and trips for the fall! Yes, the months and months away fall. Tags and trips must be thoroughly thought out to ensure a longgggggg, drawn out happy, happy hunting season for the outdoorsman. God forbid, he not put in for the right tag, for the right location, for the right time. This is seriously life altering business, I am told.
He says that this planning must be done this week because it simply must. Judging by the “emergency” in his frantic voice you would think that the deadline for submitting their tags was TONIGHT. I casually ask if the tag’s deadline is tonight…Nope…Perhaps this week? Nope…Next week? Nope…Oh, Lordy. So what is the rush? All I can guess is that for some reason the outdoorsman is having a hunting craving that he cannot resist and he must plot, plan and devise some sort of plan for hunting season before he spontaneously combusts. Poor fella, he just needs to talk about hunting. Who knew that hunting was such an addiction? He needs his fix and he needs it now, dammit!
I am not really sure why he asks me my opinion on where to hunt. I have no idea what he is talking about as he is spewing out tag area numbers like a deranged auctioneer. Area 134? Area 315? Area 412? Huh? I really don’t know what that means, nor do I really care. I’ll take the area that is closest to home and free of man-eating bears please. Then he starts ranting about preference points. What? Then he goes on to fume about how he has all these preference points and has been waiting 13 YEARRRRRS for some tag…Blah…Blah…I don’t know what because my eyes glazed over and I didn’t hear a thing. I guess that’s how he feels when I talk about the awesome sales going on at the mall.
He tells me that he is looking for areas that are for the family man. Oh, please. I just got nauseated. I love how he tries to trick me into thinking that he secretly wants to be home, when really he is positively salivating to get out and chase around any wild beast he can fix his bull’s-eye upon. I am tempted to tell him that he doesn’t have to pretend he would rather be home than hunt, but I let him pretend because it makes me feel better and it is a little entertaining to hear him weave these tall tales. What- does he think I married a hunter yesterday? After 15 years together, I am pretty sure I know what I am up against and thats just fine with me. I suppose he does get an “A” for effort though.
And just when I thought he couldn’t get any crazier…In his extreme hunting plotting extravaganza he tries to insist that I put in for tags too. I am a fisherwoman…not a hunter. Sorry honey, call your other wife for this business! No thanks! Doesn’t he understand all those times he is hunting I am eating cereal for dinner, wearing jammies for days and shoe shopping? Leave me in peace you crazy camo man!
Good luck girls, you thought it started in the fall…Nope, it starts in MARCH.