A well-trained militia

We’ve been looking forward to Jon’s family coming to visit since they pulled out of our driveway six weeks ago.  As soon they got out of the van, the men-folk headed to the backyard to set up for the weekend activities…

20150914-DSC_7474 20150914-DSC_7475

I wish I’d gotten a picture of the ammo.  There was SO MUCH ammo!

Once they got the preliminary hugs and kisses out of the way, it was time to get down to business:

20150915-DSC_7558(Can we pause for a moment to acknowledge the awesomeness of the very serious weaponry going on here, juxtaposed with the elephant scooter in the background?
*No elephants were ridden during the making of this blog post.)

The kids got lessons from Uncle Chris:



They could all pass the conceal and carry test (11 out of 20 rounds from 21 feet.)


20150915-DSC_7549 20150915-DSC_7568(If we had to come up with a uniform to illustrate our family, this would be it.
Camo and cowboy boots.  Represent.)

20150915-DSC_7573(I call this one “The Right to Bear Arms”)

Even Grandma got in on the action:

20150914-DSC_7480While the little’s watched with Uncle Chris:


More pictures coming soon!  It was such a wonderful weekend!


A note about our family’s take on gun safety:

When I was in my teens, I found my dad’s gun, took it to the backyard, and shot it without his permission.  My brother and husband did the same as kids (my husband never shot his dad’s, he just got it out to “look at it.”)  We were all old enough to handle it safely (and old enough to know better) but the main reason we snuck them out of their hiding places is that we were curious.  There was so much mystery surrounding those guns!  We weren’t allowed to touch them, our parents kept them hidden, we were told 1.4 million times how dangerous they were.  It was exciting!!!

When Jon and I got married, we decided to take a different approach.  We would treat guns as tools and eliminate any and all mystery surrounding them.  We’d teach our kids to shoot them, how to clean them, how to care for them.  We’d take them hunting with us.  We’d let them see them in action and teach them first-hand what lethal means.

As a result, my oldest son knows more about how Jon’s pistol works than I do.  The boys have their own rifle and the older kids all know how to take it apart, clean it, handle it, and shoot safely.  The guns are inaccessible to the younger children and the ammunition is stored separately.  The kids know that if they ever want to shoot the gun, all they have to do is ask and we’ll make sure that happens, because we never want them to feel they have to sneak around with them.  Guns are not mysterious to our kids, they’re tools to be used under very specific circumstances.  We feel that this will go further to keep them safe than making guns completely off-limits.  We recognize that this is a controversial issue, without one “right” answer.  This is just how our family has decided to handle this issue.

*Oh, and roughly 90% of the guns pictured here are not ours.  But they represent only about 10% of the total number of guns Uncle Chris has in his stash.  Which officially makes Chris Jon’s favorite brother.



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