“What’s it like living in Prince Edward County?”
That is the question friends and family keep asking.
That is my standard answer. Vastly different from last summer when I would have said,
“Hot and yes, we have another fire ban this week because everything is so dry. No fire pit s’mores this year.”
When I ask around everyone seems to agree, we have yet to experience a normal winter or summer here in PEC.
“This is highly unusual.” Is the consensus from our neighbours. (They said the same thing last year about the drought this area and much of Southwestern Ontario experienced.)
Of course it is unusual. So, as we celebrated our first year anniversary moving from suburbia to the gorgeous countryside of Prince Edward County- instead of enjoying the sunsets and the pretty waters of the Bay of Quinte, we watched the rain come down, and down.
This week is the first week where it may not rain. May not. The weather experts are calling for thunderstorms tomorrow. But, since the weather changes every five minutes, you really have no idea what the day is going to be like.
Now don’t get me wrong. One thing about Canadians and especially country folk, a little rain doesn’t deter anyone. Summer events still go and people go out. Grab your rainboots instead of sandals, that’s the only difference. Everything is lush and green throughout the county and the mosquitos are almost as big as a small bird. (I’m not kidding, they are huge. Think stagnant water, still flooded areas and damp all the time. Haven for bug-life including giant, hungry mosquitos.)
We are well into summer and of course, taking advantage of the sun when it does come out.
Fidget spinners have saved us on long car rides from place to place. Each kid now has two of them, their favourite?
On my first warm weather visit to Bloomfield, as always, my first stop is the Prince Edward County T-Shirt Company. They have a great social media presence and fun, new items for adults and kids alike. As soon as they posted that fidget spinners were in stock – I soon had three purchased and tucked away for that special time when the kids had an argument-free day on summer vacation. (It took until this week!) They love them.
Strawberry season has pretty much wrapped up here in The County, but what a bumper crop this year! Sweet, juicy Ontario strawberries at their best and although we didn’t get our freezer jam made, we did get to go picking at our usual hang out – Campbell’s Orchards.
Since our kids were done school a little earlier than others in the area, it meant that we took advantage of quieter side trips before July. We took a couple – one to the 1000 Islands (1 hour drive) and then to Cobourg (1 hour drive). Two places we had not yet visited.
It was simply a gorgeous drive around this area. We found a hiking trail that a guide suggested and spent the day outside exploring a small portion of the 1000 Islands. PEC is a great starting point to explore so much of the Eastern side of the province and we look forward to going back again this summer.
Canada Day was a highlight for our family and although we missed our annual street party back in Oakville and our friends, we made the most of the free activities and fireworks! Trenton, ON put on a fantastic fireworks show and we joined the hundreds of people down at the Trent Port Marina.
Also that weekend, we drove to Cobourg. A small pretty town to the west where they have a street festival every Canada Day weekend and although the beaches were (and still are) water-logged, it was fun for the kids to get on the fair rides, view the boats in the marina and check out the festivities.
Music and Ice Cream
This year we decided to explore the multitude of free, family friendly events offered throughout PEC.
In Wellington, just a short 20 minute drive from us we found Concerts In The Park sponsored by the local Lions Club. Held every Tuesday night throughout the summer – this free event provides live music, hot dogs and drinks by donation. The last couple of weeks have been those special summer evenings that have been spectacular. (Bring bug spray!) An added bonus is the huge wooden playground for the kids.
Being relaxed summer parents, we opted to have ice cream for dinner one night (or rather as an appetizer before the hot dogs) and found that Nice Ice Baby, the ice cream shop we found in Belleville last year, has a Wellington location! The kids enjoyed their customized cones while sitting at their outdoor seating area.
As we enter the mid-way point these lazy summer days are flying by, but we are trying to make the most of it. At least the kids still want in the pool each day – even if it’s raining.
Each week we keep exploring the area and brace ourselves for guests that start arriving next week and that will continue throughout August. We may get our sprinkler system on this year if the forecast holds and the rains of summer at last abate. It would be nice to start cleaning up our soggy shoreline.