My husband bow hunting deer

Hunting to eat

I’m fortunate to have married one of those rare breeds of husband who will go out bow hunting a deer and bring home neatly wrapped packages of meat ready to cook. Like Liam Neeson, my husband, Mark, has a particular set of skills. Skills he has acquired over a lifetime of hunting animals for food. Luckily for me, he has utilized these skills to keep me in meat for the Homegrown Year.

As a patently non-vegan person who is also doing a crazy challenge to live off our farm for a year, meat procurement has been critical. There are only so many chickens, and quail one person can eat before she needs something more substantive. Luckily, hunting is allowed under the rules of the challenge.

So, I took the (human) kids in exchange for Mark heading out to utilize his skills. I also handed him a camera with a selfie stick and told him to video the process. Enjoy.

Not for everyone

ALSO, BE WARNED THAT THIS IS A VIDEO ABOUT AN ANIMAL DYING. I tried to edit it to be not gory, but again, this is real life. It is a real best life, but real none-the-less. So, if this isn’t your jam, don’t watch it.

A fun video project

I enjoyed editing this video not just to show the farm’s natural beauty but also to show the sheer amount of work, preparation, and thought that goes into hunting. There is often a misconception from people who don’t hunt that hunters are Neanderthal-like people who stomp out into a forest and just shoot wildly at the closest animal. Nothing could be further from the truth. As Mark likes to say, he doesn’t go out to hunt “deer,” he goes out to hunt “a specific deer.” He will do weeks and weeks of prep work to try to keep the herd healthy and vibrant.

Many people understand the hunting process, but few understand the sheer work that goes into everything afterward. In the second video of the series, Mark shows us the process of taking an animal downed in a field to the freezer. Again THIS VIDEO IS NOT FOR EVERYONE.

A lifestyle with these kinds of projects is a lot. A lot of work, a lot of fun, a lot of learning, and a lot of heartache. I still wouldn’t trade it for anything and feel fortunate to have found a partner who not only appreciates my crazy ideas but who will do the hard work to help me succeed at these nutty goals.

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