Starting My Own Business: Little Ads, LLC


Finally, after 30 years of working for the Navy, I decided to move home to West Virginia. I had many reasons for moving back, the weather, the hills and mountains, wildlife, family and to start my own business.

I wanted to move back for many years, but it wasn’t until a year ago I made the decision to take a leap of faith and do it on the 30th year of joining the Navy. Joining the Navy in September 1987, I had many jobs, starting out as a Hospital Corpsman, Store Keeper, Boatswain’s Mate, and a few others, finally settling in on the job of a Journalist (now called Mass Communications Specialist, MC). While I was working as a Journalist, I learned to write, take better photos, layout and design and editing. I found out I was pretty good while working as the editor of Shift Colors, The Navy Retiree Magazine, and I began to get a lot of feedback from many of the 260,000 readers who received it.

When my enlistment ended, I applied for a government contractor job that opened at Navy Recruiting Command as a Public Affairs Specialist and was hired. After six years the job was converted to a Government Service position as a Public Affairs Specialist.

While I was working there, I decided to help out some local WV folks with their election campaigns. Living in Tennessee I was able to build ads, and run their social media campaigns from 700 miles away. It was then that I felt that I could make a business out of that type of service. In October, 2016, I decided that I would make the move.

Fast forward to June of 2017, I made the move. Once getting back to WV, I applied and received my business license through the state of WV and came up with the name “Little Ads, LLC.” 

   

 

 

If you are looking for ads, graphics or help promoting yourself or your business at a reasonable price, visit us at https://nicholsoutdoors.com/little-ads/ or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/littleadsllc/ and we will work with you. We serve people and businesses who do not want to hire a large firm.

 

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A Milestone! Thank You for Taking the Time


I would like to thank all of my followers and casual readers for allowing me to hit 10,000 views on my blog! stats.alltime

Many things I write about end up in places I never expected them to, like Rednecks Vs. City Folk which ended up in a discussion on a SB Nation College Football forum. Also, my best one day views on July 3, 2014 was an article about Kendall Jones (www.thekendalljones.com) when she was being attacked by anti-hunters Nature is Much More Cruel Than Humans Could Ever Be.

I do not write every day and when I do, it usually has a point to it. As you can probably see, I love writing about guns, food, West Virginia and anything outdoors (with a little politics thrown in), So it is very humbling to see so many people reading what I write and using my articles in conversations.

Thank you all and I will keep writing and I hope everyone has enjoyed the visit into my life, opinions and adventures.

jeff.nichols

 

Jeff Nichols

 

 

 

 

 

The Circle V Ranch and Old West Town


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Me circa 1968.

Back in 2004, I came up with an idea, and at first, it was just kind of fun, and sort of just a dream. The dream was something I had since I was just a little guy, one of being a cowboy, riding the range and working cattle, horses and chasing the bad guys. It wasn’t until this past year, after turning over 50, that I thought to myself “What the heck, I am not getting any younger and what if I can do this?”

So, I decided to make more precise plans, write out exactly what I wanted to do, draw some concepts and maybe, just maybe some willing investor would like to join me in this venture.

The idea (which is listed below) is to be able to move back to West Virginia, to the county I grew up in, and if able to acquire the money and the land, that it just may help out the local economy and do something that hasn’t been done.

To start off, the namesake to my idea, is Velvet. She was a quarter horse that was two years older than me, and I spent my whole childhood with her, feeding her, watering her, riding. She lived a very good life, and passed away in 1991 at the age of 29, while I was overseas during Desert Storm.

Velvet

Now the whole idea is listed below, and for anyone who would like a certified copy of the concept, I can provide that.

 


 

  • The Circle V Ranch and Velvet City is a one of a kind ranch, old western town and community farm where visitors can relive the way it was in the old West. At the ranch, you can rent a horse for a trail ride, or go on a guided trail ride; hitch up a buggy and take a leisurely ride down the road or across the countryside; head into town for some authentic western shopping and eat at one of the fine restaurants serving straight from the “farm to the plate.”

 

  • Watch as bank robbers take off and get deputized to chase them down and take them back to jail.

 

  • Kids can enjoy learning about the western lifestyle, riding horses, working with livestock, working the farm and even attend one of three summer camps during the summer.

 

  • Visitors can go out to the community farm and get fresh produce, place an order for beef, and be assured that everything they purchase is GMO free, which means it is all natural.

 

  • Every weekend, visitors can enjoy a concert by local country music and bluegrass bands or go to one of the various entertainment venues, such as the dance hall, saloon, or pool hall.

 

  • If you are looking to rough it, ride out with the chuck wagon and sleep under the stars with the cowboys watching over the herd. You might even get a singing cowboy out by the fire.

 

  • If you like shooting sports and want to try your luck to see how good your draw and aim are, you can head on over to the range and try out our cowboy challenge. There you can rent a six-shooter, shotgun and rifle and see how good you really are. Archery will also be available as well.

 

  • Want to take a ride on the stage coach, well it comes by several times a day for rides.

 

  • There will be a blacksmith and farrier on site in case you throw a shoe.

 

  • Stay overnight in the local hotel, enjoy the authentic western atmosphere.

 

  • Cabins will be scattered out back of the town for those who would like to stay a couple days or a few days.

 

  • If you come out for a summer camp, or you are staff cowboys, there will be bunkhouses to stay in.

 

  • Do you like the rodeo? Once a month our cowboys and local cowboys will compete for points to be awarded the top cowboy at the end of the season.

 

  • During the winter months, you can enjoy good food, poker, pool and entertainment in town. You can also take a sleigh ride when the snow is right.

 

  • Every week, pick up the local newspaper that will have stories and photographs of all that went out for that week with photos of visitors interacting with the town and ranch. A photographer will be on hand to photograph you as well.

 

  • There will be a doctor ( or EMT) on hand to patch up any scrapes and nicks you might get while visiting our town.

 

  • On Sundays, come out and enjoy sermons and fellowship at our cowboy church. Horse, buggies and lunch for those who attend church is free.

 

  • The town, ranch and farm will be made available for movie sets and the concerts will all be taped and be made available for use by bands who participate for free in lieu for performances. Bands can also ask for donations for the show.

That is a lot of information I know, but I always think in the way that, what if someone likes the idea? What if someone would love to be a part of something that will not only help out the local economy, but also give folks who want to relive the old days and learn how they lived back then? I think it is worth giving it a shot. six_gun
Right now we are looking for investors who will be full partners to purchase land, livestock, equipment and building supplies.

Town_Drawing Ranch_Drawing community_Farm2 copy

Click on each photo to see the full size (not scale).

This is a great start up opportunity for those who love the Old West.

For more information or you would like to invest please fill out the Contact Form.

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There I was (37 years ago)…


37 years ago I experienced one of my greatest hunts in my life and I was only 14 years old!

We were off school for Veteran’s Day, and at that time in my life (most of my life), in the fall, when school was not in session I was in the woods.

While walking up my favorite tree stand before daylight, I saw four does bedded down about 50 yards from the stand. They jumped and started running. after watching them run off I proceeded to climb up into the stand and get settled in. Hanging my Bear Whitetail Hunter bow in the tree, I sat back against the tree and waited. It was a cold morning, and a heavy frost had set in the night before. As I sat there, I was getting pretty chilled, that is until the sun started coming out and shined right on me. The warmth felt really good and I closed my eyes for a minute. When I opened them back up (it was around 9 a.m.) and something shining in the sunlight caught my eye off to the left.

If you look long and hard enough, you might get to see a large buck like this 10 point.

 

I looked down and it was a very nice buck, walking steadily with his nose to the ground. He was heading right down to where the does were earlier that morning. When he got about 35 yards away, he stopped. I drew back and let an arrow fly. Dang thing hit the tree right in front of him. He bolted and my heart sank. Now it should be noted that at that particular time, I was shooting instinctive, which means, I was not using a sight or a release.

After the miss, I stood there more mad than anything as he stood about 100 yards away looking around, then to my amazement he decided to put his nose on the ground and walk right back up to the same exact spot! Wrong move for him! I drew back, let the arrow fly and hit him!

Now I was not cold anymore. I waited for a little bit, then got out of the tree. I walked over to the last place I saw him and found some blood. Then a little bit further, and found a lot of blood. So I decided to get some help tracking. We tracked that deer, with a blood trail that was not hard to follow at all, for about 300 to 400 yards. Then out of nowhere, the spigot ran dry.

Deer are more active during the fall and have lost the velvet from their anlters and prepare for the breeding season.

Most of the time, when a deer stops bleeding, it means that he is probably down, maybe jumped off the trail, or in a pile of brush. We did a circle around the area to see if we could find the deer. No luck. I had to go to school the next day and I had someone else look for it. As luck would have it, someone did find it, said a truck had hit it, although, sure didn’t look like it, since it had only one hole in the lungs from an arrow. I was asked what the antlers looked like, and explained that on the right side there was a fork in one of the tines. That proved that this was the buck that I had shot and it was a nice 14 point, but never got to put my hands on him!

Even though I did not get to bring that nice buck home with me, it was still a great hunt!

If only we had iPhones and digital cameras then…

Still, to this day, I will never forget that hunt!

Stand Up for Something or Someone Everyday


Today I shared a photo from Cowboy Ethics FaceBook page that struck a cord with me and I wrote something that is true to what I believe.

“I may not have the opportunity to do this everyday, but when I do, I make it count! One thing in my life I regret is not actually going with my heart, instead I went with the money and spent the rest of my life working to get back to my heart!”

What I said had a couple meanings, one was that I often try to stand up and help out those less fortunate whenever I see someone in need. Last year I was in the checkout line at the Wal-Mart  store that I shop at and an elderly African American woman was in front of me and had a few items in her cart for Thanksgiving dinner. Now I could not tell if she was fixing dinner for herself or if she had someone visiting that she was going to cook for, but she was checking the prices for each item she put on the belt. She got down to three items that she said she could not afford and so I told the checker to ring it up and I would pay for it. She pleaded with me and said, “No, it is ok, I really don’t need those.” But I replied to her that if she had it in her cart, that she evidently had a use for them. Well, she was beside herself thanking me and I gave her a big hug and told her that I hoped she had a very happy Thanksgiving and we went on our way. I have not seen her since, but I can tell you, it made me feel very good to be able to help someone out who had lived a long life and didn’t need to walk away from a checkout without things she needed.

Now, let me be clear, I am not looking for people to say how good a person I am, or how it was so nice I did that because, in my mind, this is something all of us should do every time we see someone who might not have enough money to enjoy a holiday, or even eat something that they want to eat on a daily bases. We all should strive to help out someone in need without anyone asking us to help. It is how I was brought up and it is how I live my life.

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The other part of what I wrote, ”  One thing in my life I regret is not actually going with my heart, instead I went with the money and spent the rest of my life working to get back to my heart!,” was because I was one of the people who left my home to travel and work and look for the big deal in life that would make me rich.

Did I find it? Well, I am living, I have a roof over my head, food on my table, but am I happy where I am? No! While many have moved on from our childhood homes, I have pined for the day that I can return, with all I have learned and experienced, to help out the folks where I grew up. Now I am not saying that I want to “Bring sunlight to the wilderness” as some have stated. They are only in it because they want more money, prestige and power. What I would love to do, is be closer to family, lifelong friends and be able to help out a community that raised me. I don’t want to bring huge manufacturing back, I don’t want to bring back ideas from another part of the country. What I would love to do is bring back a simple life and possibly help some folks along the way.

I have thought of many ideas, talked to some folks and have even put some ideas out there that if they work, could help out. Right now, of course I am still planning, and trying to think of ways I can help, because without that little area in West Virginia, I would not be the man I am today and if I can help give back just a little bit of what I was given when I was growing up, it would only amount to a small fraction. Thank you Sistersville, for helping to make me who I am.

I guess what I am saying is, most of us leave with our eyes on making it big, on making money, owning land and that is fine, but I think that if we thought just for a minute as to where we grew up and some of the struggles people face, giving back is not such a bad idea. As a matter of fact, giving back every day to those less fortunate does more than any of us could imagine.

I always think of one person that I grew up with who did more for others than anyone I know. Kevin Ritchey, was that man. We grew up together, played sports together and when we graduated high school, Kevin decided that he wanted to help others. He joined the volunteer fire department and was also a member of the EMT. Once he had a few years in, he decided to move to another community where he worked as an EMT and one icy night while on a call, he gave the ultimate sacrifice when he died trying to help others. Kevin will always be a hero to me, always be someone I would strive to be like. He has been missed, but what he did for others will live on.

Remember your heart, where you came from and where you go. There are always people in your past that got you to where you are.

So, I guess in all of this, my one thing that I wanted to say is, “Stand Up for Something or Someone Everyday!”

Mover’s Etiquette


The United States has always been the land of immigrants and we are proud of that fact. We came to a new land, fought to make it our own country and have been defending it ever since. But lately we have all been bombarded with news of illegal aliens moving into America, sneaking in the southern border and coming from many different countries, as well as those who live in other states moving into states because the cost of living is much better and life seems a little slower. In my opinion (and the opinion of many others) when you decide you want to move into another country, another state, another town, it is you, the traveler, the newbie, the “outsider” who is obligated to conform to the area you are moving into.

Most who move to our country are moving to the U.S. because:

1. They want a better life.

2. Their country is corrupt, socialist, dangerous.

3. They just want freedom!

I have no problem with people wanting to live here, as long as they do it legally. But is it really right for someone to “jump the line” ahead of those who do it legally and get the benefits? Many of the legal immigrant have a problem with that.

Now, we have in many areas where the illegal aliens are given more rights than Americans. They get upset if kids in schools wear shirts with American flags on them and the schools discipline the American students. The illegal aliens get upset if we recite the Pledge of Allegiance, yet they came to our country to live the pledge. Then comes the ones who complain about our celebrations, such as the Texas Independence Day just to name one because it offends them. I have little patience for those who move somewhere only to complain that something we do offends the country they came from, they didn’t have to move here. There is much more that  I could go into here, but I think my point is made.

Moving inside the USA

Now, in the same way that immigrants move into a place and try to turn it into the place they left, are those who move from state to state, town to town and because they have money think they can try to make their new home into the same place they left. While I was living in Kalispell Montana, I loved it. Mountains, horses, grizzlies you name it, everything you could want in the outdoors. Then the folks from California started moving in, clearing off land, building huge homes, moving closer to wildlife so that encounters were more frequent. Property prices started climbing, cost of living started climbing making it hard for those who have lived and wanted to live the simple life. Now, granted, every person in the USA has a right to move and live anywhere they want, and live the way they want to. But it is their obligation to conform to the area they live in.

While some people bring money to small towns, that is commendable, and to share ideas as to things that might help out the community is a good thing, however, pushing those ideas on the people who have lived there all or most of their lives is outright unacceptable. You are not the savior, and you are not going to “bring light to the wilderness” if those who live there do not want it. Sometimes a small town wants to stay that way, a small town! Most who move from a large town to a small town do so for a couple of reasons:

1. They want the small town feel, friendly attitudes and slow pace or

2. They are greedy, and all they want to do is bring more in like themselves to make as much money as possible. And of course, take advantage of the low taxes and score in the gas and oil boom.

That is all fine, as long as they treat the town with respect and do not look down on them for who they are and how they want to live. As I had said before in a previous post :

“There is no place in the country, let alone the world that has more people that would give the shirt off their backs to help out others, but don’t talk down to them, because the same kindness can turn to a fast butt whoopin by the same people.”

With that being said, I hope that this explains how you should act when moving into a new country, or a new town.