Cottage Life

Cottage Life October 2020

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The go-to source for cottagers, the award-winning Cottage Life offers valuable advice as well as profiles, how-to articles, recipes, essays, issues pieces, and lifestyle stories that help readers look after their cottages, entertain guests and, of course, kick back and have fun.

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1 min.
s’more stuff

Do it for the ’Gram Don’t be shy, we know you have sweet photography skills. And while our annual photo contest is the best way to see your shots in the pages of Cottage Life (stay tuned for the winners in our next issue), we share reader photos from stories, tweets, and posts on our social feeds all the time. If you’re at the cottage, we want to see it. Send us your best using #cottagelifesub to be featured, then put down your dang phone and enjoy your time at the lake. Vet-flicks and chill Stop endlessly scrolling Netflix, the Cottage Life channel has you covered. Your favourite Australian vet is back! A new season of Bondi Vet is premiering Wednesday, Sept. 2 at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT. Visit tv.cottagelife.com to find…

1 min.

Drew Hayden Taylor Author, playwright, and filmmaker Drew Hayden Taylor, from Curve Lake First Nations, Ont., uses his creative talents to explore the world from an Indigenous perspective, as seen in his essay, “Thanksgiving: Past, Present, Future” (p. 79). Drew’s childhood experience of cottage country was different than that of cottagers today. “I grew up canoeing all over the Kawartha Lakes, and we would pull up anywhere on the shore to eat,” he says. “Today most of the lakefront is taken up by cottagers.” Drew explores land and water conflicts between Native and non-Native people in the most recent of his 33 novels, Chasing Painted Horses. Suharu Ogawa Originally from Japan, Suharu Ogawa decided to become an illustrator after what she says was an early mid-life crisis. “I couldn’t give up the long-time…

1 min.
behind the scenes

When looking for models for our story about making the leap to living full-time at the cottage (“So Long, Cottage Commute,” p. 50), we wanted to find an older couple, but keep our social bubble small. (Thanks, pandemic!) And since we’re all about family at CL, editor-in-chief Michelle Kelly called up her mother, Mary Kelly, and her mother’s husband, John Barr. The pair had a blast posing for the camera at Wahwashkesh Lake, Ont., but wasn’t expecting to have to jump off the dock 30 times to get just the right shot. Talk about pier pressure!…

3 min.
take off to the lake

At the moment, I’m sitting on my front porch in downtown Toronto, listening to the thrum of a jackhammer pounding my neighbours’ yard. The thought emerges: I sure wish I were at the cottage. It’s not just noise that makes the city challenging. It’s dirty. The rumbling streetcars that crawl along the main street to the south spread dust everywhere, including onto my front door, which I can never get totally clean. And, holy wow, is it hot! Today it’s 40°C with the humidity. I’m remembering the cool northern Ontario waters I swam in just 48 hours ago and ask, Why, exactly, on this Tuesday afternoon, am I not at the lake? This question never would have occurred to me before. Prior to when the pandemic upended a seemingly immutable convention:…

7 min.
your letters

Music to our ears My wife and I loved “Still Like That Old Time Rock ’N’ Roll” about the cottage rock playlist (Aug/Sept ’20). Like in the story, our “playlist” is associated with what we now call classic rock. We grew up with it and associate hundreds of songs from that era with our sounds of summer. Our two kids, who are now in their twenties, had shared our idea of the cottage playlist their whole lives, but then their partners got added to our family and opinions began to differ. The biggest problem we faced was deciding which of the six of us got to choose the songs to listen to for our long summer days. So, we started taking turns. We’ve begun to love each other’s taste in music and…

1 min.

We have photographic proof that the fall colours are spectacular no matter where you have a cottage or cabin: a shot from Kevin McNeil, taken at Aylmer Lake, N.W.T. (p. 19). The glorious pops of colour are thanks to bearberry, in particular, the Arctous genus, says Paul Sokoloff, a senior research assistant in botany at the Canadian Museum of Nature. “It’s very typical vegetation for this part of the Northwest Territories.” Bearberry is a dwarf shrub adapted to Arctic conditions; the Arctous genus has two species, alpina and rubra. They’re green in the summer, says Sokoloff, but “it’s common for both of them to turn bright red in the fall.” Doppelgänger alert! The two species are easy to confuse. You can only tell them apart by their berries, says Sokoloff.…