Finally the day came in later September when the cement contractor came to get started excavating the basement. Dan seemed to enjoy being around our boys, and even though he had a lot of jobs going at once in other areas as well as ours, managed to give each boy a lesson in operating a backhoe. This particular photo shows our oldest son working the controls.
Another dream Jonathan had while still in the city was of trapping and hunting. He managed to read every book he could get his hands on regarding the tricks of the trade, and was itching to bring the information he had in his head down into his hands.
Well, the man we bought our land from used to be quite a trapper himself, and whenever we stopped over at their house Jonathan would pine over the traps he saw hanging in their pole building. I guess the last day Slim trapped was over on our land, and he managed to catch 67 muskrats! Someone mentioned Jonathan's interest, and Slim told us the next time he caught a raccoon eating his corn he would give it to Jonathan. His method of getting rid of the varmints was to catch them in a live trap and then drown them. That way the pelt was in good shape. He soon caught one in his trap, and called us to come and get it.
We didn't have all the tools of the trade, but Jonathan did a good job of skinning the raccoon. After he was all done, he hung the carcass across the field and on the edge of the woods for the coyotes. We noted later those carcasses continued to hang and were untouched by anything but flies! Maybe coyotes are fussy eaters.
Jonathan's handiwork was stretched on the side of my wonderful outhouse that was built especially for me by Grandpa Bartlett, and they looked pretty impressive! (The picnic table was also made by Grandpa B, and hauled all the way over here in pieces from New Hampshire when they came just 9 days after we moved to the Turtle Mountains.)
And how, do you ask, does raccoon taste? We all thought it tasted just like chicken, of course!