I recently travelled to our family cottage in Georgian Bay with my daughter, son in law, two young grandsons and Kaga the large  dog. I shared the back seat with the two boys secured in  their respective carseat and booster seat. Kaga the large dog travelled in the very back of the car. He was secured in . Rather than lying down he preferred to spend most of the trip standing behind me, breathing hot air down my neck , licking my ear and occasionally cooling me off with a little doggie drool .The boys were great and amused themselves playing games and watching movies on their I pods. It is so much easier motoring with children today than when my kids were little.

It was raining on the drive up and it was still raining when we reached our destination. Upon our arrival we were greeted with a multitude of mosquitoes and other insects that followed us into the cottage.

Let me tell you a little bit about the boys. One is six and one is three. Both are active and have an overabundance of energy, and fear nothing. Unless they are kept busy they like to challenge each other to  duals such as seeing who succeeds in pushing the other off the trampoline. Inevitably these duals end up with one of them in tears. Fortunately their clever parents are very innovative in finding activities  and outings to keep them busy. The family like exploring small towns and eating at various out of the way restaurants. This is a treat for me because my recently departed husband preferred to spend his cottage time  water skiing and driving the boat– passions I didn’t particularly share with him.

After a good nights sleep the kids were awake early. When I came downstairs, I was accosted by an exuberant three year old. He didn’t say good morning but rather he excitedly shouted ” We’re going bowling–Yup! Yup!”. This was accompanied by his unique happy dance .

And bowling we did go.But first we went to  YANNIS  FAMILY RESTAURANT in Fesserton for a huge breakfast. The food featuring Greek and American dishes was good and the prices reasonable. After breakfast we went grocery shopping and then dropped off a bag of decluttered stuff from the cottage to Value village. While there we bought some books for the minors. At last it was time to go bowling. The  small bowling alley is located in the pretty town of Coldwater. To get to the bowling alley we had to walk through the town laundromat .Fun was had by all. Even when there was a storm related power outage and it was pouring outside our spirits weren’t dampened. The six year old proved to be a great bowler. The three year old bowled like a typical three year old. Do I bowl better than a three year old? I refuse to answer that. Some things are not meant to be shared on social media and that is one of those things..

We spent the next morning at the cottage and then headed  to HENRY’S FISH AND CHIP  restaurant for Lunch. Henry’s is a Georgian Bay tradition, popular for its battered fish and chips and fresh pickerel dinners. There is a large outdoor patio that overlooks the water. We found the restaurant to be kid friendly. The boys enjoyed watching the boats in the marina and the people on the boats. Henry’s is located on Ogden Beach Road in Midland.

After our stomachs were full we stayed in the Midland area and visited Saint Marie Among the Hurons, the firstEuropean community in Ontario. This attraction brought back memories to the time I came with my children. This was a French Jesuit community  established in 1639 and acted as the  headquarters for the Jesuit mission to the Huron Wendat nations. The goal was  to spread Catholicism. This was a fenced community that encompassed barracks, a church, workshops, residences, and a sheltered area for native visitors. The mission was short lived. The settlement was attacked in 1649 by the Iroquois. The Missionaries chose to destroy the mission  rather than risk having it desecrated. They travelled back to France, after burning the settlement to the ground. Reconstruction started on the original location in 1964 and is now a historical site and museum. St.- Marie  among the Hurons brings to life early Canadian pioneer living and interaction between the Jesuits and the Hurons.

The young ones loved going into the different buildings  and climbing stairs to the bedroom levels, and running around outside, Customed guides were present giving talks and answering questions. The boys interacted with the farm animals did arts and crafts and played games that children had played centuries before and of course  visited the modern day snack bar. Back at the cottage it was running through the sprinkler time. They slept well that night .

Most of the following day was spent at the cottage. the weather vacillated between sort of good and not so good. The squirrels and chipmunks were happy we were there because they were fed lots of peanuts. late afternoon the family headed to Penetanguishene for a satisfying dinner at PHILS. I chose to stay back and do some chores,

Kaga needed a hair cut and this day was planned around his needs. An appointment at Hill-Cress dog Haven in Victoria Harbour was arranged for him. We dropped him off and we were very impressed with the clean and well maintained facilities and the happy dogs that we observed. This facility also boasts a dog rescue program, provides training programs and offers boarding and doggie day care.

We said goodbye to our pet and went to pick strawberries near Midland at Thunder Beach Strawberry Farm. The strawberries were sweet and plentiful. The Farm appeared to be a family business run by Ma and Pa who were seniors and enjoyed talking to children. Children  were given a worm. No, not a real one but one made of fabric that wiggled.

We took time to do some grocery shopping and then headed to Little Lake Road Park in Midland, where a festival was being held. It was a long walk down to the lovely park. We saw most people walking  with a hiking pole. We were told that they were giving them out free of charge. at the other end of the park. There was lots of activities for the kids.,After about half an hour I convinced my daughter that we should  get one of the wooden poles, because one never knows when one will go hiking or take up pole vaulting. We told the males in our family we would be back in about five minutes. I knew we had to pick up the dog .Well we walked and we walked and we walked some more. At last like a mirage the booth that was giving out the poles miraculously appeared. But Oh No, there was a long line up. I finally reached the front of the line and was prepared to be handed the pole but I was told they wanted to talk to me first about the beads on the stick. It was then that I noticed that the booth was run by  “Fellowship of  Christian Farmers Canada”. the talk was interesting and informative but I knew we had to get back and I was suffering anxiety. I think I offended them when I declined to take part in the prayer circle because of my time curtailment.

We didn’t have time to take in another attraction In Midland that I had visited with another set of Grandkids. CastleVillage and Enchanted kingdom park is another family run business. It is up for sale because it is getting hard for the owners to maintain. Kids enjoy fantasy by peaking into the windows of  various fairy tale houses, have fun on the unique slides in the playground, walking the  draw bridge and exploring the surrounding woods. The facility is a little run down but probably it is one of the biggest bargains around.

Finally we went to pick up Kaga. Poor kaga. He  probably thought his family had abandoned  him. He  looked very handsome indeed. I think he knew it because for the next couple of days he walked around with his nose in the air.

Next day was warm. Even though the lake was cold the males in the family went swimming.

I enjoyed the activities and enjoyed my family. I am grateful that they included me. Now I am tired and inundated with things I didn’t do last week. I was invited to join my son and daughter in law and their two little sweeties. and join them this weekend at the cottage but I had other commitments and will take a rain check.

About epsnider

EP Snider’s dream came to fruition when she published a book at age 69. She continues to share her thoughts and stories with a humorous twist on Wordpress and Facebook.
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  1. 2chicks2go says:

    I love the cottage, I love ‘up north’, I love Value Village and I love St. Marie!…and YOU love your Grandboys! An enjoyable read. 🙂


  2. epsnider says:

    thanks for reading my blog. Enjoy the summer.


  3. Being a grandparent is everything “they” said it would be and more. Glad you had this lovely time with them. I had two boys, now I’m delighted to have two sweet little granddaughters. I need to get back up to Canada – my recent family visit was to my son in hot and humid NYC!


  4. epsnider says:

    Nice hearing from you. I will be with my two sweet little granddaughters next weekend. a little less strenuous mentally than being with the two irresistible dare devils .


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