Well, no success rabbit hunting this month. Aristos and I went out on two Saturdays but didn't even see a cottontail. The first time the snow was deep, and I think it was a bit too cold. Rabbits were probably holed up snug under the snow. We saw tracks and droppings, but no rabbits. The next time we went to the woods, we brought four of our kids along: Aristos's two boys, and my two girls. We went to my parents' property, but didn't hunt long. I think the kids were just a little too noisy. I also suspect that the hunters my Dad allows to go through once a year had an effect on the local population. Despite the lack of hunting success, we did have a nice lunch around a fire in the field. It was good practice for future trips, and I was able to get a nice, hot cooking fire going. I scavenged wood and tinder from the area, just dry grass and various diameter sticks, and used a lighter for ignition. I'd like to get a flint and steel, to try on warmer trips. But the wind was cold, and I was happy when I finally (after about 15 min.) got a sustainable fire. We cooked hot dogs and marshmallows over the flames, and most of the kids had a blast. My younger daughter had a bit of a meltdown due to cold fingers, and I think it hurt too much to thaw them out over the fire. Good thing Grandma's house was a short walk away! The kids had fun exploring the woods and watching my parents' chickens. Any time I can get them outside for a few hours to do something fun helps to increase their enthusiasm for the outdoors.
One of my future trips has been set: there will be a second annual St. Joe River trip in early May. I plan on bringing the girls, plus a friend of mine (and possibly 1 or 2 of his kids) will also be joining us. I'm hoping for more sunshine, less rain this time.
Still haven't used that Cabela's gift card. Still going back and forth about what exactly to use it for. Most likely, it will be a rain jacket. But who knows what "must have" I'll come across?