I really had fun camping this weekend and it was even warm enough to go swimming!
This week our focus was solely on that of the weekend and two of favourite things united in one happy place – camping & music – in the Sandbanks Music Festival. And the best part is that it falls on (or near) our anniversary weekend and makes the most fitting of ways to celebrate our lives together doing the two things we love most, together. This year marks our third time going, and the past two despite the weather have been totally memorable weekends we have loved. This year, for the first time however, the stars a aligned and the forecast was stunning and perfect. We were certainly optimistic heading into the weekend and hoped that this weekend we might be rubber boot free for the first time.
Friday morning after my first Friday Morning Hockey skate of the season, we finished up and last minute packing, latched the trailer and were on our way. The weather was absolutely beautiful and the drive down, perfectly uneventful. Ever since our last trip down that way for the Wolfe Island Music Festival, Emelia did not let us forget that we missed stopping at one of her favourite places along the way, The Big Apple. This time around we promised her a stop and being that we were going to hit their around lunch time, it made the perfect stop about an hour from the park. And Emelia was happy with the world again.
After about hour there we were underway and off to the park to check in. As soon as we arrived and got the trailer where we wanted in on our site Danielle remembered just as we were about to level & stabilize Wolfie Too, that for some idiotic reason I had taken the level we use for the trailer in the house after the last trip, and not put it back in the trailer. So, we before we could really get the site setup, there was a trip into Picton to get a level so we could get the trailer setup properly.
Thankfully by dinner time we were all level and set up. And the site was laid out in such a way that the fire pit was perfectly facing where the trailer was, so that I could make dinner at the BBQ and get the fire up and going for sitting around after dinner. We had our dinner, and then settled in for the evening with some fire pit, cards and then we all made our way off to sleep at our respective bed times — I think all of us each wonderfully content in the fresh late summer air.
Saturday was warm enough that after we got going we slipped over to Outlet Beach for a swim in Lake Ontario before heading over to the bandshell to take in the festival. We had an hour in the lake before sneaking back to the site for lunch and then heading back for the music. The schedule this year was adjusted to have a later start and earlier end so that we got a bit more time to putter around in the morning and knew that we’d have time to (if the weather allowed) to have a campfire when we got back to the site after it wrapped up.
One of the things we love most about the festival is that kids are part of the day in that kids under 12 get in free and they have plenty of programming that thinks about them – including Emelia’s favourite Costume Creations where she easily spends most of her festival at creating outfits and crafts. But, you know her Mummy & Daddy also are pretty enamoured with the lineup of musicians that play too! And this year was no exception with one of our mutual all-time favourite bands in, Great Lake Swimmers who were headlining the night, and with the forecast we got made for a truly amazing evening.
We got back to the site, had some dinner and then retired for our second straight evening sitting around the fire enjoying each other and relaxing in the most beautiful of late summer evenings. Emelia got off to bed, and Danielle and I enjoyed burning off the last of the firewood. It’s funny because at the start of the summer we would have never imagined this weekend happening in anything but Wolfie but there we were not even five months later in a brand new trailer in Wolfie Too and a new truck to boot. And both of us talked a lot about how much we loved having the space and comfort we now have that will take us forward in the next however many years. We will have, as the end of this summer been out in the new trailer at least once every month since May, and for two more trips than last year, and will have camped almost into November when the season wraps up!
Now for the reason behind this weekend… Tomorrow marks our 18th wedding anniversary and 29 years of Danielle & I being together and I couldn’t be happier. There hasn’t been a moment in the last 29 years where Danielle hasn’t been foundational block in any plan I had for myself, nor has their been a moment where I didn’t see her there beside me. She makes me feel like that kid who met her one day near the tennis courts with my friend Bobby Yule. And, every moment I wake up beside her, I feel like the luckiest person in the world. You have made me a boyfriend, husband, and father — but most have all, you have made me happy beyond any vision I had. Thank you for helping me becoming the best version I could be, and not being afraid to kick me in the ass, when I haven’t. I know this gets said a lot, but I truly do love you more every single day we have. And thank you for every second you’ve been part of my life and giving me all you have and then some!
This weekend could not have been more perfection if it tried. As the week started clicking along and the more we checked the weather the more it looked like a perfect weather weekend was upon us. After a week prior of seasonally cold weather we were so beyond thrilled that warm weather was upon us. As the weekend apporached we were settling in our normal pre-camping schedule of packing and planning. I spent our evenings getting meals planned, trailer packed and basically getting ready for a family weekend away.
Before the weekend could arrive John and I had to put in our normal full work week. This week I continued to settle in my newest daycare little ones and happily they are both settling in amazing and the whole daycare is in a whole new groove. For now we are all in a pretty good harmony and the little ones really do adore each other. It has been a pretty sweet adjustment for everyone I am happy to say.
The week went by quickly and before we knew it Friday was upon us. Friday after John got home from hockey we put the last few items in the trailer and we were on our way. We made amazing time and timed it perfectly for lunch time to one of Emelia’s favourite stops. The Big Apple. With full bellies and coffee fuel for the grown-ups we made our last legs to the campground.
We arrived under perfect sunny skies, we set up quickly (again can we say how much we love our new trailer and how fast it sets up) made a quick stop into Picton got some grown-up beverages a quick stop at Canadian Tire and we were back at the site settled in for a night of campfires, food over the fire and time as a family. The night was perfect, the weather was perfect and the campground was well… perfect. We honestly could not have asked for better weather for the entire weekend.
We woke at a lazy pace, took the morning at an even lazier pace. The weather was still glourius so we took full advantage and spent the morning at the beach. We swam, played and had an amazing time as a family. After about an hour or so we realized that the time was getting away from us and we needed to get ready for the music festival.
Once we arrived at the festival Emelia took no time at all and made her way to the kids craft corner. The tent is perfectly placed so you can hear all the music so I could spend much of the first part of the festival letting her create away and could still listen to the music. John went back and forth watching the show and coming to spend time crafting with us. The weather was even so amazing that between sets we even snuck some time back at the beach which was only steps from the venue.
The entire day was so much fun, we got to spend our anniversary weekend doing the three things we love the most, camp, celebrate Canadian music and most importantly time as a family. I could not have asked for a better way to celebrate our 18th wedding anniversary then to spend it as a family, celebrating the life and family we created.
And finally to John, I think back over the last 18 years of marriage and the 29 years we have spent as a couple. I look back in awe at what we have accomplished together, we might not have everything but we have enough to make our lives our own, to keep us happy and true to ourselves. Thanks for always being my rock, partner and as always the true love of my life. Thanks for being you and making me be the best version of me every single day. I love you.