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Mom of Many

Keeping Kids and Company Happy in the North

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We just had a week at the cottage and there are a whole lotta reasons why I think taking your family to a cottage is a really good thing. Mostly because it’s an affordable way to bring on a whole lot of fun and a whole lot of reality all at once. And if you know me, there’s pretty much nothing I love more than making my kiddos face reality. So what do I love? Let me count the ways:

  • Becoming one with nature:

At our cottage there are many dragon flies. The conversation with my six-year-old included him asking why they always “carry each other around”. It provided a great opportunity for me to talk about mating and the importance of dragonfly reproduction. He served it right back to me a day later when I said I wished mosquitoes would go extinct. He said “but then the dragon flies and bats would have nothing to eat”. Ah, the chain of life.

  • Cottage friends:

At home, neighbourhood kiddos descend upon us on bikes and scooters. The cottage means they start turning up on kayaks. Bring it. The best thing about cottage friends? After not seeing each other for a year, it’s as if time stood still.

  • Doing crappy jobs. Literally.

Well, there is an outhouse bucket that has to get dumped into the septic tank annually, and who better to do it than a couple of cheeky teens? The best part? I actually get volunteers because doing such a gruesome job is like a badge of honour. I love that they learn that they have to take care of their own crap. That’s life after all.

  • Screen Detox:

Let’s just say, it’s a beautiful thing. The first day of no Wi-Fi makes everyone (mama included) a little twitchy, but by day two, they don’t even miss it. I promise. They said so themselves.

  • Rainy Days:

You may think rainy days are not ideal at the cottage, but it gives everyone the opportunity to connect on a different level. We play games with the biggies: Euchre, Cribbage, and Settlers of Catan. We play games with the littlies: Candyland, Shutes and Ladders, and Crazy Eights. There are also a whole bunch of games we can play together. OH – and books come out. It’s a beautiful thing.

It may not be a glamourous way to spend time together, but I wouldn’t trade it in for the fanciest European vacation up for offer. Do you cottage or camp? What are the pros and cons from your perspective?

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