For 10 years as a kid, I spent my summers at overnight camp. It’s hard for me to describe, but those 10 summers were the best of my life. The friends I made, the experiences I had, the sports I played and the independence I gained was invaluable.
This summer I sent my older son Gavin to sleep away camp for his first time for a month. It was heartbreaking to send my baby away. I couldn’t breathe with him gone. However, I knew I was giving him the greatest gift and experience he could ever have.
During the one month period that he is gone, the camp hosts a visitors day for parents and families to come and visit their children. The following week, Gavin was going to be coming home so I decided to rent a cottage near the camp for the week instead of flying back and forth between Toronto and New York.
When we first spotted Gavin on Visitors day we grabbed him so tight and cried tears of joy. It was an emotional roller coaster for us all. Gavin was so proud to show us around camp, introduce us to his friends and show us what he had learned over the past few weeks. His favorite and most proud accomplishment was learning to water ski.
My sister has a friend who rented a cottage in the same area that we were looking for a place so she recommended that cottage to us and we got super lucky in booking it!
The cottage was unreal, nestled right in front of the lake. The owner is totally OCD like me so everything was super organized and perfectly placed.
My sister, her husband and daughter (Baby Dylan!) came to the cottage for a few days. Then my friend Ady spent another few days with me before I picked up Gavin to come home for the rest of the summer.
The quality time Luke got with his cousin Dylan was so special. “Uke” she kept calling as she was chasing him around. We don’t live in the same country so we cherish this time together!
We BBQ’d, made bonfires, took the paddleboat and canoe out in the lake and spent the evenings gazing at the stars and drank rosé all day.
When I picked up Gavin I got to learn all about his time at camp and it sounded like he had the most wonderful time. He was exhausted, filthy and even a little bit rattled over all the new experiences. Needless to say, summer camp started a beautiful tradition and legacy for many years to come.