We raised tough kids…they had to be…just to survive us.
Technically, the small versions of Ian and David didn’t qualify to be called real Alaskan Sourdoughs. But I wouldn’t tell them that… They were there every step of the way as we hacked our way thru the overgrown woods and helped Fred make our house more livable.
I believed in involving my kids in the experience of every day life. They weren’t little princes to be catered to. I figured when they’re old enough to say no and throw an object on the ground, they’re old enough to pick it up, put it away, plus learn the how-tos of a few simple chores besides.
However, it was safer if I picked the “few simple chores”. Doug tended to view the boys as mini hired hands.
“Hey buddy…wanna help Dad out in the yard? We’re going to make a new drive-way and burn some brush and roast hot dogs and marshmallows!”
So… what kid wouldn’t fall for that? You know all they heard was the hot dogs and marshmallows part.
They raked underbrush, pulled branches into the pile and became the go-get-me-this-and-that “go-fers”. There were a few play breaks (this is where the mom gets involved). And eventually we got to the hot dogs and marshmallows. As I’m looking at the old photos though….kind of wondering how fun that was to dig in the rock pile? Oh well………..
They were good kids who grew into good men.
Ian keeps heavy metal objects flying. He once flew from Oregon to Dutch Harbor, Alaska in a Chinook, in the winter….he said it was a little chilly. And of course there were those couple of years in the jungles of Ecuador. It must be noted he had the good sense not to drag his family along.
David chose the soldier’s life….Airborne, ranger, a few combat tours under his belt. I guess playing in the rock pile didn’t hurt him one bit. Hunting and fishing with his dogs is a good day these days.
Another note…they both grew up and actually chose to buy “normal” houses….normal plumbing, normal electrical, normal walls, ceilings and yards, in normal neighborhoods.
I am so relieved.