Tuesday, July 26, 2011

What's Up Dock?

In my opinion a cottage isn't a cottage without a dock. The dock that our cottage came with wasn't much of a dock, it was more like a floating means to get from the shore onto the previous owner's pontoon boat. It was about 10' x 10' and had two staircases taking up most of that 100 sq ft. One set of stairs came down from a long ramp, and one set went up to the deck of the boat.

The Before:

With the two staircases the dock wasn't any good for swimming, lounging or fishing from. In fact there was hardly enough room left on the dock to fit a single Muskoka chair. Not to mention the dock was pretty old and rotted out. It actually was so old it had a small sapling growing out of it. So at the Spring Cottage Life Show, we ordered the show special from Dew Docks. We spent one weekend, demolishing the old dock. In the process we discovered why it sat so low in the water. Over the years critters had built a home under it, by gnawing a large cavity away at the styrofoam floats. Another weekend was spent loading up the dismantled dock so that it could be carted away. And then that wonderful day arrived, when the folks from Dew Docks put in our brand new cedar dock. I can't tell you how nice it was when the email arrived from the installer, the email had no subject and no text, just a picture of our new dock floating on our tranquil, peaceful bay. And with the heavy duty plastic floats no more worries of critters gnawing away at it.

We now start and end our cottage days on the dock (and spend a lot of time in between fishing, swimming and relaxing). In the mornings we walk down to the dock to have coffee and enjoy the stillness of the water with the mist rising off of it. And in the evenings we usually end up having a glass of wine and waving to the neighbours as they return from a day out on the water. People often say that the kitchen is the heart of their home. Up here i would consider the dock to be the heart of our cottage.

The After:

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Canada Day Weekend

It's the first long weekend of the Summer. Summer, that short-lived burst of heat we get in Canada, which we pine and long for all Winter and Spring long. So after enduring the frigid cold of Winter and cold and rain of Spring, what do Canadians do? They head up North to get away from the heat. Ironic maybe, fun definitely!

We spent Canada Day weekend at the cottage, doing a bit of work and a bit of play. One project that we did finish was painting and assembling a pair of Muskoka chairs. While the origins of the Muskoka chair are no doubt rooted in America's Adirondack chairs. They have become such a staple around Ontario cottage country, that to me they are iconically Canadian.

We bought our chairs for $60 from Costco. They're made by the Bear Chair Company from Northern Ontario. The white pine that the chairs are made of also grow in Northern Ontario. So the product is a local one. We chose to paint ours in a nice patriotic colour (Cherry Cobbler by Behr).

The supervisor seems to approve of the colour choice:

And now we have the perfect place for morning coffee: