June 2020

The Great Outdoors, by Larry Whiteley

The Great Outdoors


by Larry Whiteley

Lilly Nelson had a great idea for a Father’s Day gift. She told her mom Amanda she wanted to take dad crappie fishing. Mom smiled and said, “He would love that but don’t you want to take your brother Timothy along?”  Lilly rolled her eyes and said, “Nooo, he’s too little!”

Mom helped Lilly make a Father’s Day card with construction paper and crayola’s that read ‘Good for one free crappie fishing trip with Lilly’.

When dad opened his card a smile came to his face, a lump to his throat, and a tear to his eye. He reached over and got a big Lilly hug and asked her, “When are you taking me on this crappie fishing trip?” She said, “Today! It’s Father’s Day isn’t it?”

Kris went out and got the boat ready while mom helped Lilly put on her fishing clothes. It had been a while since their boat had been in the water. You see, the Nelson family’s guide fishing business https://tandemflyoutfitters.com on Missouri’s Stockton Lake had been declared as a non-essential business and was shut down during the pandemic and with it their major source of income. Then the flood came and their house became covered in black mold. It was hard but their faith was helping them through it.

The day was beautiful as they left the dock. She took dad to their favorite fishing hole. The crappie was stacked up on the fish finder. She helped dad lower the jig down and helped him reel them in again and again. They got their limit.

There were lots of smiles, laughter, high fives and hugs.

“This is the best Father’s Day gift ever,” Kris told her.

Lilly smiled.



 “Fishing requires patience. Fishing with a child requires the patience of a saint. But, the rewards are heavenly.” -Author Unknown


The Morpho butterfly of Central and South America is famous for its iridescent blue wings. The butterfly’s hue is created by the way light hits it. Some light waves are reflected others absorbed. Study of the Morpho butterfly has led to the creation of low-power computer screens and counterfeit proof currency.


Americans spend almost $900 billion on outdoor recreation that is pumped back into our nation’s economy. Let your local congressman or woman know that and also tell them all the people that enjoy the outdoors also vote.

That also means in order do our part to help our nation’s economy we all need to do more fishing, hunting, and other outdoor activities.


 Trail mix is the perfect name for what you need to take along on a hike. Don’t bother with the high-priced, in-crowd trail mixes you buy online or in the grocery store. Fix what you like and what you need. Cashews, peanuts, sunflower seeds, pine nuts, raisins, dried fruit, and M & M’s plain or peanut make the best trail mix. Trail mix is also great to take along on fishing trips. When we do that though, do we call it fish mix?

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