When Danny and Sandy embrace on a windswept beach in the light of the setting sun in THE opening scene of Grease, it is the quintessential end of summer lament. With school starting in less than a week, we are feeling that same cool wind bringing our summer to a close… and hating it! So before we completely focus on books and bags, uniforms, programs, and schedules, we are looking back at everything we did this summer in our Talbot family end of summer recap.
When I look back at our first summer in Kelowna, I will picture so many friends and family who visited and shared in our little piece of heaven on earth. I’ll remember long days in the sunshine and heat, hanging out by the water, laying on the dock with a good read or lounging under the umbrella watching Todd flip off the diving board or the kids take swimming lessons with our new neighbour Susan.
As the summer began Todd regaled the kids about his summers on the lake in Winnipeg and how his grandparents would work in the morning and play in the afternoon, so we got started early with a healthy routine that served us over the next two months. Because the property was used primarily as a rental in the recent years before we bought, there was a lot of overgrowth to cut back and maintenance to be done. Not to mention, a lot of bugs. There were a few times early on when I found my serenity in our big, beautiful, bug-free RV with it’s master suite on the opposite end from the kids wing.
We acquired the trailer from Voyager RV because the current cabin is an un-sealed, one room building with loft and no insulation. To say I wasn’t relaxed upon arrival would be accurate and finding ants in different places every morning in the cabin didn’t help me to chill. Having undergone nighttime training during the kids infancy to wake up at their every move, I now find sharing a room with them virtually impossible. So the trailer was everything I needed to transition to “lake life”.
Elsewhere on the property, Todd set up a hand-me-down trampoline, and a hand-me-down ping pong table, and Ashlyn swept off a concrete pad for Kesler’s street hockey court. During the early summer cold weather we played so many board games and built fires and then again at the end of the summer when the smoke lingered, we played school in our trailer classroom with cubbies under the kitchen dinette for each kid to store their books and pencils and fill out charts with their learning progress and chores every day.
I spent days raking our little strip of lakefront, filling a wheelbarrow (that Todd keeps reminding me, “needs a new tire”) with rocks to form a creekbed next to the gazebo where we house a floatie collection; unicorn, spaceship, two pink donuts, pineapple, and noodles among others. We took the paddleboat out regularly to visit the abandoned houseboat beached around the point to our north on the way to Lake Okanagen Resort where we rented speedboats and jet skis and on one occasion when the whole family visited, a pontoon boat. Grampa taught the kids how to fish (too bad he never taught me how to release- that was a bit of a surprise when Kesler caught his first fish!)
Todd and I have an argument about whether or not my favourite floatie is actually called an air mattress. Call it what you want, it keeps me cool as a cucumber in more ways than one. If you’re ever feeling like city life has got you strung out, come visit us at the lake. It’s just what the doctor ordered, I just wish it didn’t have to come to an end!
Check out the coming posts for our bunkhouse build and our go-to options for games night as well as our favourite Kelowna spots.