I may not be a camper, but I do enjoy going to the cottage.
Every year since I was pregnant with the girl, we have spent the first week of July at Ardagh Cottage Resort. Its location just north of Peterborough is the perfect meeting point for us (coming from Ottawa) and my dad and his wife (coming from London). And with its rustic yet charming atmosphere (and, yes, fully equipped kitchens and bathrooms) it’s also the perfect compromise between portaging into the heart of Algonquin Park and jetting off to a five-star all-inclusive in Playa del Carmen.
Here are my Top 5 Cottage Moments from this year’s trip:
- Canada Day fireworks. It may not be Canada Day on The Hill, but the volley of fireworks set off by our hosts Tony and Lesley and their neighbour across the lake gets better every year.
- Sending a postcard to Grandma. Because of upcoming surgery, this is the first year Grandma hasn’t been able to join us. While Grandpa did bring a bag of her chocolate chip cookies with him (thanks Grandma!), the kids missed her hugs and I missed my euchre partner. On a trip into town the kids bought, wrote, addressed, stamped and mailed her a postcard to let her know she wasn’t forgotten.
- Special outings with a friend, my dad and the girl. Every year, my dad’s wife and I do a “girls’ day out” which usually includes a pedicure, lunch and shopping. I was afraid that because Grandma wasn’t there this year I’d miss out on this cottage highlight, but instead I won out three times over! Michelle, a cottage friend, offered to join me for a pedicure and lunch. Dad suggested a trip just him and me to the Kawartha Winery for a few wine tastings (and more than a few purchases) and the girl said she’d love to visit The Gallery on the Lake with me–a cultural outing I never miss.
- Wine on the dock. I hate bugs. And when I say I hate bugs, I mean I HATE BUGS! And this year they were particularly bad. However, there was one evening when the kids were off playing with their cottage friends, and dad and Luc were cleaning up the kitchen after dinner (score!), that I decided to brave the mosquitos and deer flies and take my glass of wine out onto the dock for a little me time. For about half an hour, there was a beautiful breeze coming in off the lake and not a bug to be seen. Water, wine, solitude. Ahhh!
- The family photo. Every year I have Tony or Lesley take a picture of the family by the lake on the day we leave. I love seeing how we all change from year to year. It’s hard to believe it’s been eight years already. And it’s a tradition I hope will continue for a long time yet.
Check out Luc’s thoughts on the cottage. And happy cottaging!