Washburn Parent’s Outdoor Lessons
MINOT — It’s a good read. Humorous. Inspirational. Helpful.
Geremy Olson, Washburn, recently authored Campfires, Kids, and the Outdoors, a book that tells of his experiences raising four children, recovering from a disabling firefighting accident, being evicted from his home, and relying on the strength of his family to recover.
In speaking to Minot’s Golden K Kiwanis Club Wednesday, Olson shared the story of when his life was at what most people would consider a low point. Due to being disabled for nearly three years following a 2005 grass fire accident while serving as a volunteer firefighter near Wilton, Olson recalled making a phone call to his wife. He had one question – “Where do I live?”
Recovered from his accident, Olson was returning from several days of firefighting outside North Dakota. When he left Wilton for that job, he said, all the family’s belongings were packed in trailers in preparation of complying with an eviction notice. The answer to his question was Washburn, where his family resides today.
The loss of income meant the family had to come together to make things work. Raising children in the midst of adversity taught Olson some practical lessons in parenting, many of which he shares in his book.
“My whole life if I wanted something I had to earn it. It was part of life, learning hard work and the value of a dollar.” Geremy Olson
“I asked myself, how do I teach my kids all the things I missed out on?” said Olson. “My whole life if I wanted something I had to earn it. It was part of life, learning hard work and the value of a dollar.”
Olson smiled with the pride of a successful and proud parent when he told the group about how his kids responded to challenges facing his family.
“When they were eight and 10 years old my boys began making and selling walleye fishing rigs,” said Olson. “A couple of years they made more money than I did, and they were in high school. It was fun to watch.”
Olson has faced challenges his entire life. Dyslexic and unable to write, he successfully traversed through high school and college.
“School was really hard for me.” Olson
“School was really hard for me,” said Olson. “I got a college broadcasting degree because of the lessons I learned from my dad, FFA, and Boy Scouts.”
His perseverance resulted in achieving lofty FFA Leadership and the top rank of Eagle Scout. To this day he impresses upon his children, ages 21, 19, 18, and 15, the importance of relationships, skills, and principles.
Campfires, Kids, and the Outdoors contains numerous examples, some through trial and error, of the successful discoveries Olson made while raising children and teaching them “Outdoor Lessons for the Real World.”
The book is not only worth any parent’s time, but anyone who enjoys captivating stories about facing adversity while growing up in North Dakota. Campfires, Kids, and the Outdoors is available at Barnes and Noble in Minot, Amazon, and Shopmissourisecrets.com.