Tag Archives: Father’s Day

Father’s Day Weekend

I hope you and your family had a wonderful Father’s Day.  Seems dad’s just don’t get enough special days though out the year.  I heard recently some folks are trying to do away with calling it Father’s Day and have put forth legislation to change the name to “Parents Day” so it is more “inclusive”.  Such a shame though to take the focus away from Father’s.

We spent the whole weekend celebrating Father’s Day.  Why not?  He works so hard to care for the needs of our family.  Dedicating this entire weekend just to him pales in comparison.

Father God is also a good father and He spends our entire lifetime caring for our needs.  He is amazing!  He can do anything!  I want to encourage you to not forget him.  Don’t forget to thank him.  Don’t forget to celebrate him.  He is good and his mercy endures forever.

On Saturday, Daddy opened a couple of gifts we had picked out and some that were made for him.  One of the special gifts this year we have been focusing on has been learning “skills” from outdoor survivalist Creek Stewart.  For Dad’s birthday a few months ago, we got him a bimonthly subscription to Apocabox, and he will get six of these boxes during the year.  So for Father’s Day, we stayed with that theme and we ordered him a bow drill from Creek Stewart, so he can learn to make friction fire, also a folding saw for cutting tree limbs, and a Special Edition Apocabox.   However, the Apocabox had not yet arrived before he opened his gifts Saturday morning so I figured the box might be here by Monday.   We told him it would be coming, and we gave him his other gifts and he was quite pleased.  We gave him the Creek Stewart bow drill, a collection of some fire tinders that were hand collected by one our boys including homemade charcloth he made, an extra large coffee cup that says “make it happen”, a swiss army military style clipper set, and his favorite chocolate pecan turtles.  One of our sons is working on a special paracord bracelet that is still in progress, but not finished yet.  Another one of our son’s made him a beautiful leather bag.  I will post a story soon about him creating the bag.

We got ready to leave to take Dad to lunch.  We had a few plans including taking him to lunch at a Mexican restaurant and then take him to Cabela’s to get a new fishing pole.  To round out the special weekend, we planned to take him fishing on Sunday afternoon.

Just as we were planning to leave the house Saturday, the mailman brought a package.  My husband met the mailman in the driveway and he was beaming ear to ear when he got back in the house with his box.  It was the Special Edition Apocabox from Creek Stewart, and he (and our boys) couldn’t wait to open it.  I will post a story soon about this box.

After looking through his Father’s Day gifts and spending the morning together, we went to lunch.  We ate at a place we have eaten at a few times for special occasions such as birthdays.  We had actually been there two weeks earlier to celebrate our oldest son’s eighteenth birthday.  They make delicious tasting Mexican food and our whole family enjoys it.

After lunch we took Daddy to Cabela’s to look around and see if he would like a new fishing pole and gear.  Our family has some fishing gear, but with eight people in the family, and with little ones, some things get broke and we all share what we have, and sometimes Dad is so busy fixing the poles, lost gear, tangled gear, or re-baiting them etc, that he doesn’t even get to fish.  We thought it would be nice to get a new pole just for him.

Cabela’s is a very interesting sporting goods store.  On this day, they had set up a pool in the parking lot and were giving Kayak lessons.

Another cool feature inside the store are the wildlife animal displays and the huge aquarium.

But at the end of our time at the store, the only thing he really wanted was a tee shirt and a flashlight.  So we came home without a fishing pole, but we enjoyed spending time with him anyway.

After we got back home Saturday, we ate some Father’s Day cake our daughter made.  Then we spent time in our back yard trying to make a fire by hand with Dad’s bow drill. 

My husband had our 13 year old son assemble the Creek Stewart Take Down Bow Drill.  He was thrilled to get to assemble it. These bow drills are custom made by hand.  They are made so you can disassemble “take down” the bow and put it into your backpack to carry with you on camping trips.

My son had also made a tinder “nest” for this special occasion.  He is learning so many skills and I am very proud of his efforts.

After it was assembled, they headed to the back yard to practice.

The two of them worked together to run the bow drill.

They had smoke coming from the friction several times.

But each time they would check for a “coal” from the smoke, there was not a coal.

But they did have lots of ground up and smoking wood dust, created by the friction of the two sticks, that could become a coal in the right conditions.

I don’t know if you have ever tried to make a fire by rubbing sticks together, but it is not easy.  They tried for a long time.  They tried up on a table so it was easier on my husband’s 50 year old back.  But when that wasn’t successful, they moved it to the ground.  They also tried making it on a flat rock.  But it proved to be too difficult this evening to get a friction fire going.  We plan to re-watch Creek Stewart’s video about how to use the bow drill to create a fire and then “make it happen”.

Later after dark, the family all went back outside and played with flashlights. Dad got out his new flashlight, and the boys got out their flashlights and they all played around seeing who’s light could shine the brightest out into the yard and go the farthest down the driveway.  As they get bigger and older, it seems Dad might be feeling a bit challenged.  But Dad’s new light won the “farthest” competition with the flashlights and he felt very proud to still be the top dog!

Sunday morning, we got up and made coffee and pancakes.  Knowing we had plans to take Dad fishing later, we played around the house for a bit, and we watched a few videos together.  There are some really good weekly videos on youtube that show current events each week.  There are also some wonderful bible teachings.  When we have time, if we are home on a Saturday or Sunday, we watch some of these bible teachings, and videos that show current events worldwide, including world wide weather events (hurricanes, floods, volcanoes, earthquakes, mudslides, etc), and some that focus on events in the USA.  It is a good way to catch up on the news from a Christian worldview, something you don’t get on regular TV.  It helps to see what is happening in current events, and understand from a Christian worldview what is happening and how it lines up with bible prophesy.  We are told in the scriptures to watch and to understand.  We are living in the end times, and though we don’t know the day or hour it will all take place, I would encourage everyone to try to keep a watchful eye however they can and learn as much as they can.

Then we headed outside to load our fishing gear and cooler into the van and headed out to find a fishing spot and to enjoy the rest of the day with Dad.  We stopped along the way to get a bag of ice, bread, lunch meat, chips, bottled waters and Gatorade.  We planned to have a lunch picnic.  It was 95 degrees out today and we wanted everyone to stay hydrated.  We drove around for about two hours looking for just the right fishing spot.

Finally we found a nice little spot along the water that faced away from the sun, and it had some shade trees.  This seemed like a good spot to put our fishing lines in.  Shade trees can be a blessing, but you can also get your lines tangled in them when casting.

But it was so hot outside, we were sweating while just standing still, and having that little bit of shade from the trees was important.  Eventually we realized the fish don’t like the heat either and we were not catching anything.  After several hours of trying on our part, the fish were just not biting on our lines, other than an occasional nibble.  Then, not long before dark, we had a Father’s Day miracle.

We didn’t get home until very late, and we were all tired, but it was a great day.  Despite the heat, we had fun just spending time together as a family and we enjoyed each other’s company and enjoyed the special day and our special Father’s Day Weekend with Dad.

Be sure to read the next post for an amazing outcome to our Father’s Day weekend:  A Father’s Day Miracle.

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Creek Stewart Apocabox: DIY Survival Skills

A few months ago, for my husband’s birthday, I purchased a subscription to Apocabox from Creek Stewart.  It turned out that our whole family has enjoyed learning with this unique box of challenges.  I would like to encourage other homeschool families to check into doing these DIY suvival skills learning kits with their kids.

Creek Stewart is a well known survivalist teacher.  He has been featured over the past 20 years in countless articles, magazines, TV shows, talk shows, news, and more.  He previously hosted a show called Fat Guys in the Woods where he helped “guys” get off the couch and learn knew skills in the woods such as camping, bushcrafting, survival, and mastering personal skills that helped change their lives.  He has a survival school called Willow Haven Outdoor located in Indiana.  He has his own signature line of knives and tools called “Whisky” where the handles are made from the oak wood of whisky barrels.  He is the current host of a TV show called S.O.S. How To Survive that airs on the Weather Channel that showcases true stories of people who found themselves in survival situations and what skills saved their lives.

Creek Stewart is also an author of lots of books including suvival guides, magazine articles, as well as fiction and non-fiction books.  He has several websites and youtube channels and he is well known and well liked by many.

Apocabox

Apocabox is a survival school in a box.  It comes to your door every other month.  It is filled with skill challenges, at least 1 or more survival skill challenge kits, sometimes one of Creek Stewart’s pocket survival guides, and always includes about 5 to 7 gear items that can benefit you in a survival situation.

Each Apocabox has a unique theme, special gear, and skill challenges.  Apocabox has been going for several years.  Here is an example of the 2017 themes and related gear for the past year.

2017 Themes:

  • Ignis (Fire)(Febuary): Whisky Flint and Steel Kit, Whisky Ferro Rod, Fire Scratcher, Friction Fire Chucks, Ignis Tinder Tubes, Pocket Wick, Fresnel Lens
  • Forager (April): Canvas Foraging Bag, Foraging Knife with Sheath, Fruit and Nut Grapple, Sprouting Kit, Tree Finder Guide, Arbor Day Foundation Tree Guide, Chirps Chips, Forager Patch, Pocket Field Guide
  • Hydro (Water)(June): 3 Dry Gear Bags, Tarp and Drain Water Harvester, Gear Guard Wax, Folding Filet & Food Prep Knife, Life Raft Knife, Frog and Fish Gig, Collapsible Minnow Trap, Pocket Field Guide, Build a Coal Burned Wooden Container Skill
  • Bushcraft Dump Pouch (August): Canvas and Leather Pouch, Whisky Burr Knife, Sharpening Brick, Trout Line Fishing Kit, Bone Feather, Beeswax Bar
  • Camp Cookery (October): Stainless Steel Pack Grill, Fold Down Cooking Tripod, 5Litter Dry Bag, Whisky Scoop (wooden spoon carver tool), Chicory Coffee
  • Tool & Maintenance (December): Knife Kit, Multi-function Sharpener, Double Edged Bench Strop, 4-Way Rasp, Rock and Roll Sharpener, Diamond Paste Syringe, Buffalo Bone Whistle, Lincoln Patch, Tool Maintenance Desk Mat, Field Maintenance Bag

Each box includes at least 1 or more theme specific survival skill challenges that include the complete project plus templates and raw materials and special videos for you to learn to make the survival product yourself and master using it.  Each box also includes up to 10-12 additional survival skills for you to master.  These additional skills are related to the gear in the box and written about in the newsletter, pocket survival guides, and exclusive subscriber videos, and you can resource your own materials and learn these skills right from the comfort of your home or backyard.

Apocabox Example: Forager

With the Forager edition of Apocabox, folks learned how to forage and gather food and resources from trees, plants, roots, fish from streams, and sprout their own seeds into nutritious greens too.

Contents:

  • Apocabox Newsletter: filled with skills challenges and detailed content descriptions. (These have been updated to 4 page high gloss magazine style pages and now also contain photos of other subscribers who sent in pictures of their finished challenges and projects)
  • POCKET FIELD GUIDE: Survival Trees : Vol I
    70 page 4×6 pocket sized field guide filled with DIY Skills Challenges to Master such as gleaning survival resources such as food, water, shelter, fire, cordage, tools, containers and adhesives from 8 different trees.
  • Canvas Foraging Bag
  • Foraging Knife and Sheath
    Multi use tool designed to dig up roots and tubers, and use as a trowel for digging fire pits, and more.
  • Fruit & Nut Grapple Kit
  • Bone Sliver Fishing Kit
  • TREE FINDER GUIDE:
    How to identify 161 species of trees.
  • Arbor Day Foundation Tree Guide:
    250 trees of North America
  • Sprouting Kit:
    Sprouting seeds, instructions, and prortable sprouting container.  Seeds vary and might include: Black Turtle Beans, Navy bean, Red field peas (these are beans also), Lentils, Mung Beans and Alfalfa.
  • Chirps Chips
    Chips made from cricket flour.
  • “FORAGER” Velcro Leaf Patch

The Forager Apocabox contained instructions, templates, and materials for 3 Specific DIY Skills Challenges:

  1. Bone Sliver Kit: includes instructions and materials to make a bone sliver fishing hook, and a bone sliver fishing gorge.
  2. Fruit and Nut Grapple Kit includes instructions and materials (except paracord) to make the grapple and you add the paracord and then practice harvesting from trees.
  3. Sprout Kit:  includes seeds and container for nutritious food.

Subscribers also have access to exclusive videos that walk you step by step from beginning all the way through mastering these skills.  Some videos are about 5 minutes long, some 10 minutes, and some videos are 30 minutes long depending on the skill being learned.  Creek is a very good teacher and is easy to understand in these videos. Plus there are lots more optional skills to practice and master in the Pocket Field Guide.  The Forager Apocabox came with links to 3 online teaching videos to watch.

Here is a short 1 minute video clip about resources found in Pine Trees:

Apocabox is truly a super-duty DIY survival skills training box and is a perfect match with the self motivated learning styles of many homeschool families as well as Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, 4 -H clubs, after school programs, summer camps, and many other groups.

2018 Themes (so far):

  • Exodus (Febuary)
  • Silent Hunter (April)
  • Flatline (June)

Apocabox costs $50 plus shipping every two months. The box is shipped 6 times a year (Feburary, April, June, August, October, December) and contains enough materials and information to keep you learning and mastering at least 1 or more survivals skills each week for the full two months while you wait for your next box to arrive.  So that is about $6.25 a week if you only learn 1 knew skill.  But there is likely enough challenges in the boxes, pamphlets, booklets, and exclusive linked videos to do 2 skills a week, which would translate to a cost of about $3.13 per knew skill learned.

Apocabox is cheaper than any survival school or life skills curriculum I have found and even cheaper than a fancy cup of coffee.  This is very reasonable for all the cool things you get to learn. I wish I had these kits when I was teaching the Build It Learn It Workshops and Take Action Tuesdays a few years ago.  These truly are a wonderful resource!

However, if the Apocabox skills challenges sound like more than you can do at this time (either time or money or both), Creek Stewart also offers a Survival Skill of the Month Club where he teaches 1 knew skill for the current price $7.95 a month.  For that price, he will mail you a binder, plus 1 illustrated skill per month in high gloss magazine style pages that you can add to the binder.

He has also recently added a Wild Edibles Skill of the Month Club that looks fantastic too.

Sharing through Facebook and Instagram and being part of an online community of people who are also learning these skills is another special feature Creek offers to his subscribers. It is truly amazing what some people do while learning these skills and see the outcomes.

For example, this past December, in the “Tools and Maintenance” theme, folks created their own custom knives and custom handles and sheaths, and learned how to properly care for knives, and axes, etc.  The 2017 December box and theme is what actually inspired me to subscribe.  I just knew my husband and older sons would love it, so we subscribed and our first box was the Feb 2018 and it turns out we have all loved this learning journey so far!

With Father’s Day right around the corner, if you are looking for a really nice gift for the father’s, sons (or daughters) in your life, the life skills and survival skills learned from these boxes will be a gift that keeps on giving. Like the old saying goes “give a man a fish and he will eat for a day, teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime.” The knowledge and skills one gains to care for themselves, and the needs of others, to help them survive is priceless.

I will post future stories about each box and the skills we learn.  If you think this might be a good fit for your family, please join us on this new learning adventure!

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Blessings On Mother’s Day

Dear Mom’s Everywhere,

May your day be filled with special moments and special memories.  May you be blessed beyond measure and your cup overflow.

I want to encourage you today to draw near to Father God, Yahuah, through his Son, Jesus Yahusha HaMeshiac.  He is the source of life and the source of every blessing.  He is deserving of our highest praise.  Our Father God sent His Son to be the Savior of the world.  (John 3:16)  When you confess that Jesus, Yahusha HaMeshiac, is the Son of God, and ask forgiveness of your sin, then God dwells in you and you dwell God.  God dwells in the praises of His people who believe and He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. (Hebrews 11:6)

May you believe, repent, and receive the blessing of eternal life and dwell each day in the presence of Father God. May your joy today and everyday increase by a 1000%.

Happy Mother’s Day!

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