We went camping! It was a lot of fun. It was also a ton of work getting everything ready, especially with the craziness of September, but it’s been a long season of being at home, and it was nice for the kids, especially Caleb. I can’t tell if it’s better or worse to have kids in this pandemic, to be balancing little humans’ lives with your own limited wisdom and patience, or if perhaps they help keep you grounded.

In any case, we breathed in the fresh and occasionally smoky air from our wet logs, roasted marshmallows around the fire, and the kids got a bunch of mosquito bites. I had vaguely assumed that mosquitoes were mostly over, and they were not, so Jon had to buy some bug spray. The person was surprised that there were still mosquitoes, and then Jon said, blithely, “my wife is susceptible” which somehow also sounds vaguely like I’m just being a huge wuss about things but you know what I was the first one to get a mosquito bite half an hour into things.

I’d been saving this book for this trip, and it was perfect.
George and Martha, my own personal favourite kids’ series.
“Caleb, look like your love your sister.”

Caleb had the most fun I think he’d had in a while. He loved the dirt, the sticks. Before we left, we had borrowed a few books on camping from the library, and one of the activities was making a camp diary, which he made before we left, and he spent time filling that out. He was enthusiastic about everything, from refilling the water, to watching the beans on the fire. Naomi was slightly more ambivalent at times, but she is eager to do everything her big brother does.


We’re back in Toronto, and back to reality. It’s always nice to be home after time away, back in the comforts of your favourite snacks, your own bed. On the other hand, perhaps we should’ve stayed away a bit longer. The number of cases of Covid here in Toronto are looking poor, to say the least, and we are wending our way through this storm aghast. I mean, no one likes a panicker, but the emperor has no clothes.

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September 28, 2020 — wonderpens



wonderpens said:

Yes, Awenda is such a beautiful park, and the water is so clear there. It’s always important to get out of the city a bit, but I complete agree with you: now more than ever.


Mads said:

By looking at your photos, I’m going to guess… Awenda? WONDERFUL park in the fall, one of my favourite camping spots. It’s a very unique place.

Fall camping is aways super cosy. All the sweaters and blankets really make sleeping in a tent that much more fun! It’s great to see your family getting out and having fun, despite everything else going on :)


wonderpens said:

I know! I remember those Carlaw days fondly, those early days for Caleb exploring and wandering.


wonderpens said:

Yes, in these pandemic times it’s sometimes harder but maybe more important than ever to try and find some outdoor time if you can get it. Grateful for the opportunity!


Kimberly said:

Awenda is a beautiful park, I thought I recognized the beach from your photos!! We went their this year and being outside and having to worry about all this COVID craziness just a little bit less was a wonderful thing and the highlight of my little girl’s summer for sure! Toronto is home, but sometimes you just gotta go to the woods, now more than ever :)

Lillian Chen

Lillian Chen said:

Looks idyllic, Liz. What wonderful memories for the kids. Love that Caleb made his camp diary and filled it in! Naomi is fortunate to have such a loving big brother. I’m totally sympathetic to your being “susceptible” to mosquitoes and their bites! Most people develop a little bump while mine turn into enormous red mounds just waiting to turn into purple festering wounds if I so much as touch them. I am fortunate to live on the west coast where bugs are not the prevalent concern they are elsewhere.
Enjoy the rest of summer. Love to you all.


wonderpens said:

Yes! The weather was so great. We went to Awenda, and we found it lovely. Lots of trails, beaches.

The camping chairs we got we received free from Uline (where we order some of our packaging material from): https://www.uline.ca/BL_2112/Uline-Event-Chair

They are quite low! We got them for the kids, however, I found them quite comfortable for me, also, especially when it came to sitting beside the fire to stir things in the pan, rather than having to lean down from the standard height camping chairs (green). I think they would also be great for things like events in parks, where you don’t want to be too high up, blocking the view for people behind you.


wonderpens said:

It was wonderful to be able to have this weekend with the kids! I hope they will grow up remembering camping trips and car rides, along with everything else.

YES I also have a very strong reaction. Also, despite Jon being larger than me physically, I always end up with more than him.


Ethan said:

Glad you had fun! It’s always great to get in some time outdoors during these crazy pandemic times.

Sean Backus

Sean Backus said:

Wow. Caleb is getting so big. It seems like just yesterday he was exploring the back halls of your place on Carlaw


nicole said:

Lovely spot! Where did you go? We too went camping this weekend and boy did we ever luck out with the fall weather :). May I ask what kind of camping chairs you have? We’ve been looking to changing things up and I like the low profile of those (from what I can see). Thanks!

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