Here in Ontario the picture perfect summer is spent at the cottage. They even have a place called “cottage country” here in Ontario. Nothing wrong with experiencing nature in the city, but experiencing nature in a more natural context is completely different. I recently read my friend Lesley’s, (also a fellow mom in my neighborhood) story on Kitchen Counter Chronicles
I just had to share her story with you as I think her summer is an ideal for all of us. Here is how Lesley spends 2 months of summer at her cottage; unplugged and an active experience in nature together with her boys.
“Keeping the kids entertained up North is easy. There are a plethora of things to do up North! We have tons of visitors coming with their kids, we make our own lemonade, swim a hundred times a day, wander in the bush looking at stuff, go on nature hikes where we collect things, the kids eat wood sorrel, we have lightsaber battles in the driveway, go for boat rides, call out to the loons and the owls, fish, frog catch (my eldest kisses the frogs to find a prince, he doesn't want a prince for himself per se, he just wants to watch the magic unfold), berry pick, mushroom hunt (my Dad LOVES the wild mushrooms), look for animal tracks and turtle eggs, we eat on the dock as often as we can, we play in the sand for hours, use the clothesline as a zip line, go cliff jumping, bother the neighbors, we create crafts from things we find, we play A LOT of cards, eat a lot of ice cream, we bike ride in safe places, go on day trips to the pioneer village, Algonquin park or the wild life reserve”...
“I could go on and on. How do you survive those stressful kid-crazy (I assume you have those?)kid-crazy days! What day isn't kid crazy? We survive with yelling, just like at home. We try to find something to do. Rainy days are hard - that's what craft kits are for and trips into town to buy stuff.”
“What is your favourite part about summer at the cottage? Mine is the lazy sun filled days and the ability to reconnect with my kids. Really, I know to some people the above sounds like torture and it's a TON of work and truth be told, some days you don't want to jump in the lake 100 times. But it's just me and them; with no phone, no schedule, no computer.”
“It reminds me of why I got myself into this motherhood gig in the first place. They are magic and full of wonder and impressed by the tiniest of things. The jury's out as to whether or not they'll remember their summer's the way I do, (My father once told me very seriously, that you cannot control someone's perception of a point in time) but I will always carry around those feelings in my heart. The sun setting, the kids jumping, the shrill of happiness as they plummet into the water. Their smiling faces, and their beautiful sleeping bodies. My boys.”
Republished with permisson from Kitchen Counter Chronicles a blog sharing adventures in crafting, baking, gardening and green living.
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