Give the gift of the outdoors this year
By Ben Gruber
The giving — and buying — season is upon us. I am a bit of a scrooge when it comes to buying gifts, and I do not do much of it, so I come from a little bit of a different perspective in regards to holiday gift giving. I feel like we have become awfully hung up giving material things, and I have been trying hard to create memories and share experiences instead. If I am backed into a corner, I try to give gifts that will get people active or outdoors. Here are a few of my ideas.
A few years back, my father, my younger brother, and I made a pledge: We were no longer going to get gifts for each other. Instead, we went to the bank and opened a joint savings account, and for every birthday or Christmas, instead of buying a gift, we take money and put it in the joint account. When that account is sufficiently funded, we take a trip. We have gone to Colorado for elk hunting, South Dakota on a pheasant hunt, taken ice fishing trips, and used some of the money to plant trees on our hunting property. This, by far, is my favorite family giving tradition.
Last year for Christmas and birthdays, my present to my wife and daughter was a down payment on a Canadian fishing trip. I did not save enough for the whole thing, not even really close, but I scraped together a down payment and booked the week with the outfitter and thus committed us to saving the rest of it.
Now six months later, my daughter is still telling everyone that she caught a walleye longer than she is tall. (I am not going to say she exaggerating as it is her fish story.) This trip was actually a repeat for my wife and me. We went to the same place for our honeymoon.
For those of you who must buy something, I do have one gadget that I am really loving right now: my BuzzyGrill campfire grill. I do not do many product plugs or recommendations, but I have no doubts about this one. A portable campfire grill that pivots away from the flames and has easily adjustable height is fantastic. A nice lip on the edge of the grill keeps your food on the grill and out of the fire. If you have campfires at home or elsewhere, this is the ticket.
They are well built and reasonably priced. I hauled mine all the way to northern Montana to grill my fresh mule deer steaks a few weeks ago. To top it off, they are not only 100 percent made in the USA, they are 100 percent made in Wood County by Buzzy at Mill Creek Manufacturing. Visit buzzygrill.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Get outside, and make some memories.
Ben Gruber can be reached at email@example.com.