It’s a Fail, It’s a Win, II

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Beyond the cell service range is where the real summer fun started- where kids played in the woods, built forts, swam all day long,  and their parents replaced their phones with fly rods and gathered merrily around the fire each night for smores. This summer, more than ever, I did not want to come back to civilization. So with every free moment we had, we made it out to catch our breath and remember what this crazy life is all about. When I measure the summer, I can think of several ‘wins’, but of course there are always the ‘fails’ which naturally come with being a parent in search of an outdoor adventure. Here’s a few ‘fails’ that keep me humble and make me second guess my grand ideas of rive-time, followed by a few ‘wins’ that make me keep coming back for more.

FAILS

When your middle child says he ‘doesn’t want to go to the river’ so you get him excited about gold panning, just so he’ll be manipulated into going, and then you never see one tiny speck of gold all summer so you keep telling him he ‘needs to keep trying’……………………………Fail

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When you decide to add one more child to the mix and then everyone decides they have to go #2 throughout the day; you’re in the middle of nowhere, taking children to the trees, instead of fishing all day (Does anyone ELSE have to go? Third cast out, ‘mom, I’ve got to…’)………………Fail

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When you don’t feel pain while wet wading and you’re legs end up looking like you escaped from a deep-jungle prison camp, so you decide to put cover up on them before a meeting………Fail

When you hear about a river so you pack your kids up and drive 3 hours on a winding road, and two kids end up throwing up and you end up yelling at your spouse like it’s their fault, and you fish angry for a half hour and decide to just go home………….I don’t know who did this, but it’s a total…………………….Fail

When you hear about a creek so you get google maps out and drive with your fly fishing buddy, in your mom car, to the middle of nowhere and end up at a dried-up mud bed; then realize the creek is most likely a hike into the mountains so you laugh really hard and get a picture with a ‘steelhead’ and go out to eat instead…….Fail

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When you get back from a day of fishing with the same friend and you pull into a parking lot to find someone  getting into your friend’s car; you park behind it, start yelling at the people and then realize your friend’s car is actually on the other side of the parking lot………you’re getting old………but it’s still good to know you would fight someone trying to steal your friend’s car…..’I thought it was strange they hung an air freshoner from the mirror’, she later says………….Fail

When you hear about a T-Rex skeleton found in a creek in Montana and you tell your kids, ‘we need to go to Montana asap to hunt for T-rex!’…in the creeks….or the rivers….I think there was one spotted near that lodge……And your husband shakes his head at you………Fail

When your dog is a neurotic rock hunter and he takes 200 rocks out of the river, so you have to lock him in the truck and throw them all back for a half hour……………….Fail

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When you catch a beautiful cutthroat trout and carefully let it go and it goes belly up for no good reason at all. So you swim with your net and get it again, provide life saving mouth to mouth reccessitation, and spend about 10 minutes on your knees in the river, moving water through it’s gills, at it swims off strong……………………..Fail/Win

When your plants all die in the front of your house because you choose to not be a home-body, and value experiences more than a perfect house…………….Fail/Win

When you try to teach safe fish handling techniques and conservation efforts, and your child wants to take a turn letting a fish go and they do an overhand throw/chuck into the water……………………..Major Fail (2x, 2 separate children, videos on My Mammaflybox Facebook Page)

When your daughter gets hurt every ten minutes on a camping trip so you get a picture of her complaining and show it to her and you both end up laughing…………….Fail/Win

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When, after a long day fishing and bike riding, you tell your kids you’re going to THE SNAKE PIT for dinner (a restaurant), and one of them actually believes there are snakes in the walls and despite trying to change their mind, they are waiting  for the snakes to come out of the ground…………….Parent Fail

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When you end up fishing through nap-time because there is a great hatch happening, so you carry your children because you are that addicted……………….Fail.

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When you put your kids on a treasure hunt so you can fish and then realize you have to follow through and bring it all home………..then it ends up in your car for a few days…..Fail

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WINNING

When your son asks to learn how to fly fish again and he catches a westlope cutthroat all on his own………….Winning

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When your daughter grabs your hand and says she loves going on adventures with you and she jumps into the water next to you and you’re kids are swiming and you’re fishing and all is right with the world………………….Winning

When you tie flies together then head to the lake to fish them and swim, and it all works out well…………….Winning

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When your littlest starts singing your favorite song every time he sees a river, ‘Rivers and Roads, Rivers and Roads, Rivers Till I See You’-The Head and The Heart-…….so cute how he sings it…………….Winning

When your husband teaches your daughter how to make a grilled cheese sandwich using the sun……………terrifying……but still…………..Winning.

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When your son learns to Kayak and he’s addicted…………Winning

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When you catch a huge fish and your daughter is there to net it………………Winning

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When your life is crazy so you pack for a week of camping in a few hours and you remember everything……that take skills…….I over-packed, but still….skills…Winning

When you look back at summer, and all the wonderful moments together, and remember that, even though some people think that we ‘go too much’, we know how to have fun and we are giving our children much more than just fun experiences. I want my kids to be able to go to these places to find refuge, to feel connected with nature, and to be able to find perspective in their years to come. We’ve had some serious fails, but I’d say we’re doing ok………………………Winning

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(When you’re too busy with work, life, fishing, kids, to have time to blog…..#fail…sorry 😉

4 thoughts on “It’s a Fail, It’s a Win, II

  1. It all reads like a win to me. Thanks for the most excellent summer write-up. And I’m sure you do know that fall is one of the best times to fish 🙂

    Getting out with the family too much is soooooo not a thing. You can’t get out enough!!

    Like

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