Going on a Mushroom Hunt

As a kid, I was always told to leave wild mushrooms alone because they were poisonous. I never imagined that people would hunt and eat them!

When Hubby and I were still dating, he made plans to go mushroom hunting with a buddy. After he told me that it was mushroom season, I asked, “Do you need a license to hunt mushrooms?”

He did not understand my confusion and laughed at my ignorance.

Not only was I insulted, but I was sincerely concerned for his health and the legality of this hunt. My entire life I believed that mushrooms in the wild could hurt me, so why would I change my beliefs now? After some careful explaining and seeing the results of a successful mushroom hunt, I began to understand that there is a short window of time where edible mushrooms pop up in the wooded areas near us.

Many people go crazy for the morel mushrooms, and just like a good fishing hole, many will keep their mushroom honey holes a secret. It’s kind of crazy to me, but who am I to judge? If I could find a place in nature to cultivate a special chocolate bar that only pops up once a year, I would definitely keep that secret to myself.

Over the last 18 years, I have been served and have prepared the wild morels a number of ways, but they are not something I necessarily crave. Hubby and his family members are under the impression that the mushrooms are to be consumed as if sacred and will go to great lengths to find and brag about their mushroom harvests. With an clear understanding of this passion, I recently went on a mushroom hunt with Hubby and our oldest son.

Continue reading “Going on a Mushroom Hunt”

What’s a “Freak”?

 

About a month ago my children discovered the movie The Greatest Showman. It is a musical based on the life story of P.T. Barnum (played by Hugh Jackman). In the film Barnum invites individuals who are considered “freaks” to become part of his show. Some of Barnum’s “freaks” include the bearded lady, the world’s tallest man, the world’s fattest man, wolf boy, and acrobats. As far as musical movies go, it was an alright show.

Of course the cruelty shown to the “freaks”┬áin the film led to questions from my kids, and they wanted to know, “What’s a freak?”

I explained to them that the term “freak” comes from “freak of nature” meaning that sometimes things occur in our world that make humans or animals freaks of nature. In their infinite innocence they understood that being different makes someone or something special but also makes the abnormality a target for cruelty and ostracism.

With true indignation all of my kids ranted about the the mean things done in the film by citizens who were afraid of or hated the “freaks” in Barnum’s show. I just reminded them that, in real life, they should be kind and accepting of others who are different. Continue reading “What’s a “Freak”?”