long weekend at the cottage

In most of Canada the first Monday in August is celebrated as a national holiday. If we  had stayed in Toronto we would have celebrated Simcoe day in honour of Lord Simcoe who was the first Lieutenant-Governor of Canada. However different parts of Canada have a variety of names for this day. The rest of Ontarians  refer to it as the Civic  Holiday   or more usually just the long August weekend. No matter what it is called it is an extra day off for those who work and an extra day at the cottage for those who are cottagers.

My husband and I are retired and we had the luxury of driving to our cottage destination a day early, hopefully to avoid the bumper to bumper  north bound  traffic. It didn’t work because much of  the highway was under construction and traffic was bumper to bumper. In Barrie we stopped for our usual Cosco grocery shopping spree and pit stop.  After lunching on the free samples we loaded our car and once again joined the bumper to bumper traffic. Upon our arrival at the cottage we were greeted by our daughter, Heather and son in law Neil  who  are presently living there and loving it. Their dogs – there used to be three but now there are only two-are also presently  living there  and loving it. They, the dogs, were happy to see us and in their excitement gave us too many wet kisses and almost knocked us down. Our daughter, and son in law  unpacked our car and helped put things away. There are benefits to being seniors.

Late that night the first load of Toronto  offspring, arrived– our youngest daughter, with her husband two rambunctious young sons and their city dog Chairman Kaga, who is named for a well known chef. His owners, our daughter  Beth and our son in law, Adam, are gourmet cooks and foodies and they are the first to admit to being food snobs. This became an eating weekend–fresh baked cottage bread or made from scratch bagels  every morning, to go along with the fresh brewed coffee, frittatas or the egg dish of the day. There were venture snacks { a term used by my son in law} throughout the day and a delicious barbecued dinner at night complete with side dishes and sauces and numerous dishes, pots and pans to be washed and scoured, a small price to pay for the wonderful food prepared for us.

eyeing the bagels

The next day the second carload of family arrived, our son his wife and their two very sweet and quiet little girls. Unfortunately the two and a half year old was feeling a little bit under the weather and did not feel much like socializing  and the baby was content to be held or sit in her seat and smile. Their parents looked on in amazement at the rough and non stop active play of their two nephews. The soon to be five year old loves the cottage and the almost 16 month old loves to try and keep up with his brother. He is practicing for the terrible twos and he is not quite yet one hundred percent steady on his feet. He doesn’t realize this and like to move quickly resulting in numerous falls and bumps and scrapes. But he is tough and after a few seconds of his expected loud cry, he is up and running again. The question is “Will the rest of us survive his childhood.?’ This little guy decided to go for a swim off the dock. He was wearing a life jacket of course. The  lake water was coldish and his father really didn’t feel like going in and although the baby was very contented and happy splashing around , his father thought he better go and join him.

Our oldest grand son spent most of the summer as a councillor at an overnight camp. We were delighted when we heard he was going to drive to the cottage for a day and a half especially to water ski. But alas when he had his skis and other equipment on and the spotter and the driver were already seated and the boat engine was turned on, an alarm sounded and smoke billowed out of the back of the watercraft. Thankfully no one was hurt but there was to be no water skiing on the weekend. Our grandson was upset  but the gourmet food and playing with his young cousins helped alleviate his disappointment. We also had to miss the annual regatta that takes place on a small island in the middle of the lake, due to lack  of transportation.

Everything else went  quite smoothly except for barking dogs and the occasional stand off between city dog and his two country cousins. Everyone has left. We stayed on for another day to spend some time with our cottage kids and dogs. It is very quiet and peaceful.  Aahh!

Screen Shot 2013-08-06 at 2

Whoops spoke too soon the power just went out.

About epsnider

E.P SNIDER is the pen name that I used to publish "WHY ME- a memoir". I used a pen name so as not to embarrass my spouse, my offspring, their offspring, my grand dogs and my friends. A dream came true when I had my first book published at the age of sixty-nine. "WHY ME? "is a collection of memoirs recounted from various stages of my life and the lives of those that I love or like at least some of the time. Most of the incidences are humorous-some are not. I am a senior but I feel more like a junior except for the aches and pains. When I look in the mirror I often see my mother or some other aging lady with wrinkles and sun spots. The amount and depth of wrinkling depends on which mirror I am looking into, the degree of lighting and how well my skin absorbed the moisturizing cream that day. Although I am mature in years, maturity is definitely not one of my virtues. If something strikes me as funny I get the giggles. Most of my family and many of our friends have a rather warped sense of humour-so I giggle a lot. Laughter plays an important role in our lives. My friends were a significant inspiration for me to begin my writing career. For the past number of years hubby and I have been spending part of the winter season in Florida to escape the sometimes bitter cold climate in Toronto Canada. Every year I send emails to those left behind. To my delight they find my emails to be hysterical and a cure for their winter doldrums. They compare my style of writing to that of the late Erma Bombeck. For those of you not familiar with the author-- she was a beloved American humorist in the 1970's and 1980's. I have loved literature and creative writing from an early age. I spent some of my growing up years in Alberta and won a prize for a best poem commemorating Alberta's bicentennial year. My grade seven teacher was a large and forceful woman, with white hair and course bristly white chin hairs to match. We were all intimidated by her and thus listened intently as she drilled us about parsing sentences and adverbs and adjectives. She provided me with a good basis of the English language. In addition to "Why Me" I have had a short essay published in a book of assorted memoirs by Canadian woman. I currently write for our Toronto Condominium newspaper. I hope to do more writing, although I am not sure if my family can cope with any more of my meltdowns when blocks of written material mysteriously disappear off of my computor. I admit I am computor and electronically challenged, but I will persevere. - - - - - - - - - - - Writing has been a passion of mine through out my life. Ever since I took a step forward and entered into the world of computers, a new world of opened up for me. I found myself engrossed in writing emails with lengthy updates about my life's recent highlights. To my delight, people found me...funny! I then offered to write for my condo newsletter, and I recently had a short memoir published. For the last several years I became glued to my computer, transferring my hand-written life adventure notes to an actual story of my life's defining moments. Finally, at the age of 69, I was done... I wrote a book! AND it's actually published. People are reading it. People are enjoying it. I am thrilled! Plus, it's one of the greatest gifts I could ever give my family. Talk about a dream come true. My advice to you: Think positive, keep your eye on the prize, and you too can enjoy as your dreams and desires come to fruition.
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