Cottage Country Lifestyle - Winter Issue 2023

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HOME & COTTAGE • EVENTS • DESIGN • LAKES • RECIPES • DIY • KIDS CORNER • PETS & VETS • IN THE NEWS Cottage Country's FREE Multi Award Winning Cottage Lifestyle Magazine! FREE - Thank Our Advertisers! WINTER 2023 HIKE HALIBURTON Winter Festival ottage Country LIFESTYLE Cottage Country IN PRINT, ONLINE & ON SOCIAL Since 1994 Winter Warm-up with Birchview Designs PKHBA Charity Auction Supports Habitat for Humanity Ice Survival Myths Weddings & Events Recipes
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Home & Cottage ~ Winter 2023 3 Since 1994
12 ON THE COVER HALIBURTON HIGHLANDS Photo Credit - Beaver Trail on the Frost Centre Ski Trails Published 6 times a year by Cottage Country Lifestyle Magazine Inc., 705-313-2245, PO Box 8, Buckhorn ON K0L 1J0. Distributed by Canada Post Publications Mail (to Cottages, Homes & Businesses) and distributed to over 100 drop locations. Also promoted and viewed Online. In Print, Online and on Social. Copyright 1994-2023. All rights reserved. PUBLISHER, EDITOR & DESIGN Kelly Welsh, Owner COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER Emily Ireland ADVERTISING SALES Linda Blunt GRAPHIC DESIGN & SOCIAL MEDIA INTERN Moira Gale MARKETING & PROMOTION 2016 Business Awards of Excellence Entrepreneur Innovation Recipient Volume 30 • Number 1 • 705-313-2245 • CONTRIBUTORS Russ Sanders, Emily Ireland, Jacob Rodenburg, Don Willcock, Correne Omland, Birchview Designs, Jacquelyn Toupin, Craig Nicholson, Lisa Kooistra & Ineke Turner CONTENTS WINTER 2023 8 40 42 Advertising / Marketing Agency Graphic / Web Designer Advertising / Marketing Agency Graphic Design Service Hike Haliburton Winter Festival Home & Cottage 06 - Those Were The Days “New Years Are Happy” 08 - Hike Haliburton Winter Festival 11 - Charity Auction - PKHBA 12 - Winter Warm-up with Birchview Designs 16 - The True Grit of Sandpaper 19 - The Solution To Your Cupboard Blues 20 - Cozy Comforts - Top Trends To Watch 23 - De-Icers for Canadian Winters 24 - Turning to Plants 25 - Flight of Rest 27 - Beat Winter with A New Sunroom 29 - Little Brown Shack - Cottage Memories 32 - Putting Your Foot First for the New Year The Peterborough Museum & Archives 34 - Recipes Get Outdoors 30 - Ice Survival Myths Kids Corner 42 - Rescue Race - Shaylynn & Ashley 44 - Do You Want to Build a Snowman 45 - Families & Friends Making Memories 46 - What's Needling You? Weddings & Events 35 - Wedding Planning In 2023 36 - Premier Destination for Hilltop Weddings 39 - How to Choose the Perfect Photographer 40 - Fall in Love with Iron Horse Ranch Pets & Vets 48 - Kawartha Wildlife Centre 49 - Getting Your Dog Outside This Winter In The News 50 - Chamber News

Welcome to the Winter Issue

Winter is the perfect time to wipe the slate clean and begin to dream about what you can accomplish in a new year. Whether you believe in resolutions or not, many people use this time of year to make wishes and plan for the coming years events. Some may dream of traveling more, some may want to achieve new goals in careers, or academically; maybe you are thinking about starting a family in 2023. Whatever you believe you can achieve in your new year, I encourage you to choose a word for the year. When you choose a word for the year you promise to yourself that word holds special meaning for the coming year. This year I am choosing ‘Yes’. Yes, to adventure, yes to change and yes to helping more, yes to things that challenge me – yes to life!

Welcome to the winter 2023 Issue of the magazine. In this issue we focus on fun. Haliburton is on the cover with the launch of their new Winter Hike Haliburton festival. They share with

you the local adventure of experiencing this Highlands by way of snowshoe, with volunteer led expeditions. This winter the designers at Birchview Design give you pointers on how to open up your small space, and designer Diana Rose points out top trends to watch for 2023. Our artist spotlight is on Dean James, a local musician who will make you want to get up and dance, and Craig Nicholson writes his humorous thoughts into his Cottage Lifestyle column. Favourites Jacquelyn Toupin – lifestyle writer, and Jacob Rodenburg – outdoor education enthusiast are back with good reads for winter. The Intrepid Snowmobiler offers ice safety tips, and the Cornish sisters bring home a Royal Fair Rodeo win!

The perfect time to read this cozy issue is after a vigorous adventure with a toboggan, so get outside and get rosey cottage country – the winter wonderland called Canada awaits your exploration.

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The new year blew in on the wings of a Christmas storm, and hopefully that is an indication that the new year will be brisk and fresh – the calm after the storm.


“New Years Are Happy”

It was tradition for my family to gather on our front porch to say good bye to the old and welcome in the next twelve months of uncertainty. Grandfather would take out his pocket watch and we all stood silent looking at him with sincere deep love and respect waiting for him to announce in his stately English accent that a new year had begun, then of course it was hats and horns, hugs and kisses, songs and dances and for the adults a bit of the old bubbly. There is a special warmth that fills my entire being when I sit back, close my eyes, and relive some of the golden memories from yesteryear.

Oh yes, I can remember grandpa passing away when I was still in grade school, the first time I had to face the fact loved ones leave a deep hole in one’s heart when they are suddenly and simply no longer there. During Christmas and the new year holidays it is impossible not to think of all the years that have gone by and the loved ones with whom we shared such cherished moments.

One evening Mom placed a bowl of fluffy mashed potatoes on the dinner table and said it was something new, instant potatoes that came in a box, just add milk, and stir. Oh gross Mom, none of us wanted to try it. During the war we ate rabbit practically every week, tried horse meat a few times but instant potatoes out of a box?

I have no idea why that thought came to mind so many years later but that is what it is like when one earns the title of senior, you put your head back and let your thoughts decide when and where it will take you. This time my memory vault opened the doors to 1946 when I was twelve years old.

I believe we respected our parents and the law more readily than today’s kids, no doubt because we grew up during global chaos so I think we took things a bit more seriously. Todays teens are more politically minded than we were back then, although I believe we appreciated the value of a dollar more so than today’s generations. Maybe that is being a tad harsh but I do have to admit today’s kids are far more advanced than we were in fact, in comparison, my generation would look quite naïve playing with dolls and kites to today’s counter parts well versed in electronic wizardry.

The tradition of welcoming in the new year on the front porch has long disappeared and has moved to the comforts of our living room where my grandsons are waiting eagerly for the big hand to hit twelve. I can see in their eyes the love for their grandpa, the same look I gave my grandfather many years ago. It is 2023, although they are both adults, they still hug me and say “I love you Grandpa”. Oh yes, there has been great progress over those past many years since I was a boy but thankfully, some things never change. Happy new year.

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Hike Haliburton Winter Festival

There is a certain calm and beauty in the woods that you can only find in winter. Cold, crisp air and a blanket of snow creates a landscape full of beauty and wonder. One of the best ways to experience that landscape is to strap on snowshoes and join one of our local hike leaders as part of Hike Haliburton the Winter Edition.

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The Hike Haliburton Winter Festival takes place over the weekend of Saturday, Feb. 4th & Sunday, Feb. 5th, 2023. Registration will open in early January with 20-25 hikes to choose from. Registration is online at You will find descriptions of each hike including location, length, and difficulty. Registration if free but required for all participants. You will also find a complete list of other events and experiences happening that weekend as well as local outfitters that can provide with any equipment you may need.

Our volunteer hike leaders are the heart of the festival, each one sharing with you a corner of the Haliburton Highlands that has special meaning for them. Whether it is beautiful views, unique features of the landscape, the cultural history of the area or a unique personal connection, your hike leader will help you see the area through the stories of someone who knows and cares for this landscape. There is no better way to have a unique experience and gain a better understanding of our little corner of the world.

The Haliburton Highlands is well known for our lively and diverse cultural community, cozy accommodations, and delicious culinary offerings. Our community pulls out all the stops on the festival weekend, with live music, open studios, and a variety of other events to experience. A complete list of those opportunities can be found on our festival website. There is so much to experience in the Highlands, a true Canadian Cottage Country destination.

Poet William Sharp once said: “There is nothing in the world more beautiful than the forest clothed to its very hollows in snow.” The Hike Haliburton Winter Festival invites you to experience the awe and wonder of winter in the Haliburton Highlands.

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Charity Auction Supports Habitat for Humanity

The Peterborough & the Kawarthas Home Builders Association (PKHBA) is the voice of the residential construction industry in the City and County of Peterborough and City of Kawartha Lakes. PKHBA represents over 95 member companies including builders, developers, professional renovators, trade contractors and many others within the residential construction sector. In 2021 residential construction had an economic impact of over $1 billion dollars in the City and County of Peterborough and City of Kawartha Lakes.

The Peterborough & The Kawarthas Home Builders Association (PKHBA) partnered with Habitat for Humanity Peterborough Kawartha Region to host a charity event to benefit families in need of affordable housing in the Peterborough area.

The event, which took place on Thursday, December 8th, featured both a live and a silent auction, and a raffle, with proceeds going

towards Habitat for Humanity for the construction of new homes for families in need. The event took place at the Stone House Hall at the Peterborough Curling Club. Auction items were donated from local businesses as well as a wine tree with over 30 bottles of wine donated from board members of the PKHBA, Habitat for Humanity and the Peterborough and District Construction Association.

The charity auction was organized by a group of dedicated volunteers from both the PKHBA and Habitat for Humanity, and received support from various local businesses and organizations. PKHBA would like to thank our members, sponsors and supporters for contributing to a successful event.

“We were thrilled to be partnering with Habitat for Humanity to support local affordable housing,” said PKHBA President Mitch Cleary.

“Affordable housing is a crucial need in our community, and this event helped support families in need.” The auction raised over $17,000 from competitive bids and the generosity of PKHBA’s home builder members, business owners and the community.

Anyone who missed this great event and would like to support Habitat for Humanity Peterborough Kawartha can donate directly on their website at

Home & Cottage ~ Winter 2023 11 Since 1994

Winter Warm-up

Here in the Kawartha Lakes we are lucky enough to experience a true winter wonderland during the colder months of the calendar year. Although it can get quite chilly and dim outdoors, us Canadians know just how to keep our indoors bright, cozy and curated with the right inspiration. Featuring our recently completed Midcentury Hills project, we have outlined a few of our best Birchview Design Inc. tips for achieving this vibe during the long winter months, and beyond!


Let the light in

If you are in the process of building a new home, or plotting out an exciting renovation for your existing abode, one of the most efficient ways to provide an abundance of light and perfect inside temperatures all year round is to plan for more of an open concept design. If your current space has walls that are blocking natural light sources and air flow, wall removal may be your best bet for a major transformation.

When thinking about a reduction in walls, it is important to map out what the use of each space is, and how to define it, as you no longer will have a traditional separation. Millwork, area rugs, furniture placement, lighting, art, wall treatments or paint colours are all examples of ways to accomplish this.

*Before  The kitchen, dining and living room were all separated by multiple walls, leaving a dark hallway and small spaces* BEFORE

Bring on the colour

One of the simplest (and fun!) ways to add visual warmth into your home is to integrate colour & pattern into your space. Rich jewel tones, warm hues and playful pops of pattern will add instant brightness and joy. This can be done specifically for the season; with fresh fruit, greenery, flowers, toss pillows or throws. Or, if you are adventurous enough, more permanent features are the way to go. Geometric drapery designs, colourful cabinets or tile with patterns and colour are some of our favourite details to incorporate. Just keep in mind that with bolder design selections, you’ll want to ensure there is good flow between the details.

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Storage made pretty

We can likely all agree that there is no shortage of storage needed for our spaces, so why not store in style? Open shelving is a great addition to any design and, as long as it’s well thought out, it doesn’t have to equal any less practical use (plus, it creates an airy, fresh feel!). Try layering in a variety of items that are useful and aesthetically appealing; making sure to vary heights and textures to keep things interesting. Finally, add in a few easy-to-care-for plants, and your shelves will shine all year long.

Warmth with wood

Incorporating wooden accents into your design is a perfect way to bring more warm and cozy vibes to the table (no pun intended!). Furniture, open shelving, stools, lighting, cabinetry or décor such as boards, baskets, bowls or frames are easy swaps to layer in. We love bringing in a few vintage pieces to really make the space feel curated and personalized.

Birchview Design Inc. is an award-winning interior design team serving clientele in the Kawartha Lakes, GTA, and beyond. As a full service studio, the firm offers an all-inclusive, simplified experience with elevated design expertise.

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TheTrue Grit of Sandpaper

So, you have decided to refinish Grandmas antique hutch, that DIY blog you’ve been reading tells you that you need to sand it down before you apply the new paint. So

like Festool and Klingspor Abrasives to offer a perfect assortment for finding exactly the right grit. What is grit you ask? Sandpaper is comprised paper backing material permeated with abrasive particles such as aluminum oxide or silicon carbide; these abrasives are what make the ‘grit’. Grit in sandpaper is categorized by the coarseness of the sandpaper, and that is determined by the size of the abrasive particles used.

Measured by grit number, sandpaper with lower numbers means larger, coarser grits. For example, 40 grit sandpaper is a very coarse and rough, while 400 grit paper is fine with very small abrasive particles. Lower grit abrasives remove wood and other materials fast with little effort while finer grit sandpaper (higher gauge) allows for a very smooth finish. Some sandpapers are better for metal, rust removal, or plastics – picking the right one will help your project go smoothly (pun intended!).

40, 60 or 80 grit and moving up to the next grit one at a time. It’s always important to consider the finish being applied to the wood, some finishes such as polyurethanes will specify wood is sanded to 120-150 grit while some hard wax oils can be applied to smoother surfaces sanded up to 220. These are general guidelines; experience and application matter so if you aren’t certain be sure to ask one of our friendly salespeople for more helpful tips.

you head to Monaghan Lumber to grab a package of whatever they have, sandpaper is sandpaper, right? Wrong! There are many options when choosing sandpaper, and the best way to choose is to know exactly what you are going to be sanding with it and what type of finish you are trying to achieve. Monaghan Lumber carries trusted brands

Whether you are sanding with an electric sander, or by hand, proper sanding is a critical part of woodworking. Working through each grit properly takes patience but is crucial to producing a quality finished surface. The grits are designed to be used in steps, starting with a coarse grit such as

When using a random orbital sander (the most common type of palm sander) be sure to change the paper regularly to avoid uneven sanding and swirl marks. Swirl marks are most often caused by clogged sandpaper. The clogged material stuck to the sandpaper scratches the surface and leaves undesirable marks so change the paper when it begins to clog or show signs of wear. Softwoods and species with more sap or resin tend to need more frequent paper changes. A good pace for sanding with a machine is moving the sander at about 1 inch or 2.5cm per second.

When sanding by hand it’s important to identify which way the grain is running! Sanding across the wood grain will leave noticeable scratch marks so be sure to

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always sand in the same direction as the grain of the wood. Sanding blocks or sponges can be very helpful when sanding into corners or tight spaces.

Monaghan Lumber invites you to stop in and ask them about their selection of high-quality sandpapers. No matter the project they have the right tools for the job. A few examples of the more popular types of sandpaper from Festool are listed below, picking the right sandpaper can save time and money but isn’t always easy so be sure to ask an expert before starting your next project.

RUBIN 2 by Festool

Rubin was developed for natural wood, wood composites and veneers and has a special coating which sheds wood fibers. Use on hardwoods like oak or maple, soft woods like pine or fir, tropical woods like ebony or teak, as well as on woodbased products.

GRANAT by Festool

Granat is a long lasting high performing abrasive and is well suited for nearly all applications, including bare wood, paints, most modern paint systems, clear coats, plastic materials, solid surface materials, acrylics and composites.

GRANAT NET by Festool

This new Net abrasive is the perfect solution for sanding materials that produce large amounts of dust, like drywall or plaster. The open structure enables dust extraction across the entire surface – for working cleanly, a high material removal capacity, and a long service life of abrasive.

SAPHIR by Festool

Saphir is for aggressive stock removal and heavy stripping jobs of hard, stubborn and thick coatings.

VLIES by Festool

Vlies (pronounced fleece) is excellent for deep pore cleaning on natural woods, veneers and is great for use on contours. Perfect for cleaning and derusting metal.

Sanding is a dynamic process and every project will have different considerations and challenges. Our experts are here to help you find the right techniques and tools to start your project.

Monaghan Lumber, 2129 Davis Rd.,  Cavan Monaghan (Peterborough)

Toll Free: 1-800-354-3195     Phone: 705-742-9353 FB @monaghanlumber     IG @monaghan_lumber

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Gliding Shelf The Solution To Your Cupboard Blues

You know this scenario: the whole family is coming to the for-family dinner. That means more meal prep, larger portions requiring bigger pots. Time to dig to the back of the cupboard to get those bowls and pots you never use, they’re either there or on that top shelf you can’t reach without the stool.

Gliding Shelf has the answer to your storage problems – they can double, triple, perhaps even quadruple the storage space in less than a day, simply by redesigning the interior of your cabinetry. They can even turn that useless little closet into a fully functioning pantry!

They achieve this by retrofitting your existing cabinetry – installing custom pull-out drawer systems which allow you easy access to your cookware, gadgets and canned goods.

“We take your existing cabinets and turn them into organized, usable space, customized depending on the items being stored in them. Most of the time we can double the storage space of a

cabinet. Once installed, you are able to pull the gliding shelf out of the cabinet for access to all the items which are way in the back. Our products are built to suit the space, for minimal waste.” Says Tyler Rushlow, Owner

A husband and father of two, Rushlow takes pride in his community, volunteering as a hockey coach and as a volunteer firefighter, as well as being involved with class trips and in-class projects at his children’s school.

“We can take a standard cabinet with two shelves, and put in three, maybe even four pull-out drawers, maximizing the space and customizing it for the client’s specific requirements,” Rushlow explains, adding “Following the initial consultation the new system is ready in two to three weeks, and it’s installed in less than a day and at a fraction of the cost of a reno.”

Based in Havelock ON, Gliding Shelf has grown substantially since it began twelve years ago. Proud of the fact that they manufacture all their own products right here in Canada, Gliding Shelf has dealerships which serve most of Ontario and other regions of the country.

The local service area includes Peterborough (city and county), Kawartha Lakes, Minden, Haliburton, Bancroft and Kingston Addington.

To arrange a free in-home consultation, call 705-313-5761 or email

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Cozy Comforts:

5 of 2023’s Top Trends To Watch

There are some interesting interior trends looming on the horizon, with many roads leading back to the concept of comfort. “Home” took on a whole new meaning and heightened importance in recent years, as we increasingly found ourselves seeking spaces to retire, recharge and regroup. Here are five fresh takes on the cozy cocoon, as we prepare to usher in 2023!

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Warm Neutrals: The ever-popular neutral colour palette will continue to reign in 2023, but the new year will present a warmer, friendlier take on the cool white and grey tones of the past. The new neutral leans into gentle pink and cream undertones, lending a cozier look and feel to living areas, bedrooms and baths. Further cranking up the heat, trending rose and blush accents will be complemented by an infusion of organic materials and textures – more on that below!

Sensory Design: This subset of interior design engages all the senses beyond just visual awareness, and when done effectively, it boosts intimacy. Sensory design leverages touch, sound, smell and taste, and interior designers are increasingly factoring these elements into their projects. New and interesting textures are surfacing in a raw, earthy and organic form, with natural materials and finishes touching everything from flooring to furniture, in a notso-subtle nod to our outside environments.

Repetition: Subconsciously, repetition comforting and creates a sense of familiarity.

Thus, rhythmic patterns and textures promise to be another important influence in relation to textiles, wallcoverings, flooring and furniture, taking shape as manufactured and organic patterns alike. Expect to see everything from rigid geometric motifs and rolling wave after wave, to naturally occurring wood grains, marble veins and dappled stone – on repeat!

Organic Curves: Say “goodbye” to the square corners and sharp edges of the minimalist era, and “hello” to curved forms, which are primed to dominate 2023. Uninterrupted lines will bring a calm and effortless air to our interiors, with sculptural, swooping lines influencing architecture and furniture trends, and subtle curved edges and rounded corners resulting in a softer, gentler aesthetic on everything from lighting to hardware.

Functional, purposeful design will continue to be top of mind – functional today and for the future. People are spending longer time in their homes. In the past, the average stretch for ownership of a property before reselling it was

five years, and now it’s between seven and 10. People are also spending more time in the home on a day-to-day basis, and when the time comes, more are opting to age in place. This trend puts a special focus on integrations that will embrace the homeowner’s evolving lifestyle as time passes, such as flex spaces, built-in smart features and technology, and creature comforts that make you feel “at home.” It puts practicality first, with an eye to longevity, but what does this trend look like from an aesthetic perspective? Think features and finishes that age gracefully in the face of the trend du jour.

“Home” is many things to many people, but the definition commonly includes words such as warm, welcoming, cozy, comfortable and personal. This isn’t changing anytime soon, with 2023’s most influential interiors taking shape as friendly and familiar environments that look and feel like home…..

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De-Icers for Canadian Winters

R&J Machine has been designing and manufacturing quality waterfront systems for over 46 years. Their manufacturing facility in Lakefield has a showroom that is open year ‘round and carries a selection of dock accessories as well as Kasco de-icer products and oscillators.

The Kasco de-icer products can be used during the winter months to keep an area of water open. “De-icers push warm bottom water to the surface creating an ice-free area of protection around your boat, dock, pier, or other in-water property. They help protect fish and aquatic species, by allowing for open areas where oxygen can enter the water.” - Kasco

It is always important to be cautious of where you install a de-icer unit to ensure it is not an area where there are winter activities such as snowmobiling, ice fishing or skiing and always mark the area with clearly visible signage. Temperature and timer controls can also be installed so that the de-icer unit only comes on as needed and for shorter intervals to save on electricity costs.

During the summer months the Kasco de-icer can also be used in conjunction with a manual or electric oscillating unit to clear weeds or stagnant water bodies. The de-icer is used as the fan head and attaches to either a manual rotating pole or an electric programmable oscillating unit. These units can rotate up to 360 degrees to loosen weeds from the lake bottom. These units can be attached to the side of a dock, boathouse or can be attached to a freestanding bottom unit.

Please visit to inquire more about de-icer and oscillator units, or visit their showroom.

R&J Machine

1601- 8th Line of Selwyn Township, Lakefield   705-652-6731

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Turning to Plants During Hard Times

As the wheel turns and we head into the dark times of the year, this can often be a difficult period for people. Whether it is the seasonal blues, worries about the state of the world or simply uncertainty during hard times, plants can be a steadfast ally to guide us through the trials of our lives.

Some of my favourite remedies for this time of year are preparations known as flower essences. Flower essences are energetic in nature, similar to homeopathy, and are designed to help support a variety of emotional states. From fear and bitterness, to overwhelm or a chaotic mind, flower essences can be a gentle support system for those in need. Due to their energetic nature, they are very safe remedies to use and do not interact with medications or other remedies. However, it is always wise to seek outside professional guidance if you are uncertain.

If you have ever used or heard of Rescue Remedy, then you are familiar with the most ‘famous’ flower essence blend that is widely available. Often used to help with stress, anxiety, and trauma, Rescue Remedy (or Traum-Aid+ as named in my apothecary) is a favourite of many. While I do love this remedy, the world of flower essences is wide and diverse, just like the world of humans. If emotions challenge you this time of year, I encourage you to explore this aspect of plant medicine.

Correne Omland, Clinical Herbalist & Reiki Practitioner Spiraea Herbal Clinic + Apothecary

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Flight of Rest

While the warm sun of summer leads us out of our homes and into our sense of adventure, winter’s gifts are wrapped up in warmth and rest inside our homes. Winter normally gets a bad reputation, especially in our Northern climate. It seems that most don’t love the cold, the snow, or shoveling; and while these things might make winter more difficult, I like to think it’s actually our inability to truly rest and step away from our culturally-ingrained need for productivity that leaves us filled with wintery dread.

What if we built the ritual of rest into our culture during these months—more days spent in our homes, more days for hot tea and coffee with friends, more time for inner work, personal growth, and time to weave the web of human connection?

How would we begin to create this type of luxury for ourselves? Perhaps it’s the simple act of beginning where we can. A few more days worked from home, using our year’s holidays in January simply

to perfect the art of snuggling in, saying no more than we say yes, or trying our hand at something uniquely winter (snowshoeing, making snow cream?). Maybe we even treat our bodies by eating warm foods when we’re away from our homes. Salad has its place, but there’s nothing that compares to a hot, one-pot meal in the dead of winter, even if it comes from a thermos.

Humans are a bit like purple martins in that we fly as a flock, looping and swirling together. All it takes is one person to begin the movement, and we’ll all gradually join in the flight together. Of course, this has its downfalls, but perhaps, we could use it for our betterment? One person gathers friends by a fire warming the cider, many prepare the stew; together we say yes to rest and say maybe later to all the other things. Enjoy and repeat.

Jacquelyn Toupin lives with her family in a heritage farmhouse that has been in her family for several generations. You can follow her on Instagram @my.sacred.wild

Home & Cottage ~ Winter 2023 25 Since 1994

Beat Winter with A New Sunroom!

The festivities of the holidays have come to a close, and we have ushered in a new year. With things feeling a little calmer, now is a great time to start planning for (yes, I’m going to say it), spring!

There is nothing like the feeling of fresh renovations, and Lifestyle Home Products has some easy suggestions for you to expand your space and elevate your home's price tag with a new sunroom.

Adding a sunroom, whether it is a 3, or 4 season adds a whole new dimension of living space to your home. Suddenly you have a covered space to sit, and enjoy the pitter patter of rain, while enjoying a warm beverage; a 4-season sunroom acts as an extension of your heated home, and allows you to stretch your living space into a sunny, warm, inviting new space.

There are 3 sunroom styles available:

1. The Oasis three season sunroom is the most affordable sunroom solution. Joined to your home and easily closed off by a sliding or storm door The Oasis is ideal for Spring, Summer, and Fall. Engineered from singleglaze, clear-glass, the Oasis provides natural light while protecting you from wind, rain, and the harmful UV rays of the sun.

2. The Oasis Plus four-season sunroom allows you to enjoy all four seasons with wide-open, unobstructed views. It is joined to your home and often accessed by a sliding glass door and is built for our harsh Canadian climate to be used in Spring, Summer, Winter, and Fall.

Lifestyle’s pre-engineered, high performance, Low-E glass provides optimum climate control which keeps you cool in the summer, and warm in the winter.

3. The Grand Oasis four season sunroom addition can be a kitchen extension, entertainment room, living room, or fun room at a fraction of the cost of a solarium or conservatory glass roof addition. It is created by opening a wall in your home – offering free flow into your home, using your own home’s climate control. It is made of full walls of glass, and 100% effective in all climates, in Spring, Summer, Winter and Fall. Large glass panels and a front vaulted-glass wall allow for maximum glass openings.

All Lifestyle Sunrooms are 100 percent Canadian-made and manufactured for the

Canadian climate! Plus, Lifestyle Sunrooms have a lifetime Warranty offering you peace of mind. This lifetime guarantee is their guarantee on quality and performance; it’s also a commitment that adds to your home’s resale value. If you move or sell, the warranty stays with the Lifestyle products they manufactured and installed in your home.

The Factory showroom for Lifestyle Home Products is located at 944 Crawford Dr., Peterborough.  Visit or call 1-800-465-0593 for your free, in-home estimate.

Home & Cottage ~ Winter 2023 27 Since 1994
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Cottage Memories

Chronicles of A City Boy’s Life In The Country


How does that old song go – “Little brown shack out back so dear to me”? Billy Ed Wheeler knew whereof he sang. Outhouses help us take indoor conveniences less for granted. And when modern facilities aren’t up to the task, it's either that outback shack or a swift visit to the bush for me. I'm still picking out the thorns.

Don’t confuse outdoor privies with those ubiquitous porta-potties. The ones with cutesy monikers like “Johnny On The Spot”, “Jerry On The Job”, “Perry On The Pit” or “Dewey On The Dumper”. So named to mask a purpose that’s anything but cute. And who wants an outhouse that someone can move just when I need it most? Or while I’m in it!

In cottage country, new outhouses are rare. Like the sun, they've always been theresad, dilapidated, neglected relics obsoleted by technology. I bet any new ones would rapidly acquire these disreputable attributes once confronted with their mission in life.

Mine is an old, shabby, claptrap throne hidden in plain sight. The rickety door hangs by broken hinges and doesn't fit when closed. Its misaligned hook doesn't latch against interruptions. The structure leans far left as if in search of fresh air from the prevailing wind. Or maybe it’s an NDP Privy. Or perhaps just slowly sinking into the pit below.

I approach my latrine with trepidation. Mostly because it's my system of last resort.

All others are occupied. Or have failed, except my own which is about to. Perhaps I'm reluctant because I have to dress to go. Maybe I’m nervous because nothing human has visited there since my last loo crisis. Or because it's inevitably the dead of night and I can't find flashlight or toilet paper.

Before entering, I strike a match to check for cobwebs. Eye reflections. Nests. Gas fumes. Or gnawed things like the toilet paper or the seat. Also, for what needs moving for access. Like old gas cans, deck chairs, lawn mower, garden tools and a tangle of hoses that the wife’s to-do list says I should already have taken to that other dump. My flickering flame also provides assurance that nothing new has fallen into, or is about to emerge out of, the pit. Over which I'm about to lower my exposed nether self.

In winter, I do so on a Styrofoam seat if it wasn’t left on our floating raft as a life preserver last summer. Or on my hands, a particularly vulnerable position. As the wife discovered while failing to fend off an inquisitive horse in mid squat. Her, not the horse. I prefer hands free for swatting.

Privy ventilation is unique and essential. In mine, no joint joins. A fact used to excruciating advantage by invasive insect hordes and Arctic winds, albeit in different seasons. If I catch a sniff of a whiff, I know it's got to be a quickie. Getting my business done in one lung-bursting breath, with no noxious intake. And to keep my

constitutional solo, I'm always straining on seat edge for sound of urgent intruders. Or peering through cracks for a rushing glimpse of a would-be occupant. The wife says nobody wants my company that badly.

Except by desperados like myself, outhouses are under-rated. They keep us out of the bush, preventing embarrassing poison ivy rashes and inexplicable frostbite. They are sanctuary during marital spats. Safe havens for the flatulent. A getaway for sneaking a smoke or catching up on old magazines. For avoiding line-ups and to-do lists. And no one cares I’ve left the seat up.

Yes, my little brown shack is my oasis. Except when I'm swatting, squirming, straining, or searching – which happens when I run out of toilet paper again. Then the magazines really earn their keep. Although their glossy paper just isn't the same as my Cottonelle. I try to use pages I’ve already read. Which definitely aren’t the same after.

The wife has little privy appreciation. She stoically avoids its use with unsurpassed bladder control. So far, she’s refused my offer of a chamber pot. Even when our indoor facilities break down and I’m supposed to call the plumber. Maybe I’ll get around to it next week.

Craig Nicholson is a long-time Kawarthas cottager who also provides tips and tour info for snowmobilers at and for PWC riders at

Home & Cottage ~ Winter 2023 29 Since 1994

Ice Survival Myths

When waterways freeze over, they are tempting playgrounds for snowmobilers and other winter enthusiasts. But too many ice travellers perish in preventable drowning incidents after suddenly plummeting into frigid water. Hopefully, dispelling prevalent ice survival myths may help avert unnecessary tragedies this winter.

security about falling through bad ice or into open water. But drowning is a real probability. Ask yourself: How far from the ice edge does a moving snowmobile carry me? What disorientation occurs from the shock? While sinking, how do I know which way is up? If I do surface, which way is safety? How long can I tread

And hope no other snowmobiles follow you in, because one could crunch your head as you try coming up for air. And if you break through ice, your trajectory will probably be at an angle away from the entry hole. If you’re lucky, and there’s no current, maybe you’ll find the hole before you need to breathe again.

“I’m Strong Enough To Get Myself Out.” Maybe — if you don’t panic when your helmet fills with ice water. Or when your body’s involuntary gasp reflex waterlogs your lungs. Or the weight of soaked snow gear drags you down. Cold will sap muscle power faster than you ever imagined. You’ve got less than a minute before you start to lose it.

“What Goes Down Must Come Up.” Many snowmobilers have false

It’s not easy to extract yourself. As the cold saps your strength and dulls your mind, you have only seconds. So, use all of your power to kick your legs and heave yourself out like a seal — and

30 Winter 2023 ~ Cottage Country Lifestyle Magazine Explore Cottage Country

hope you can get a grip, if the ice edge holds under your weight. Ice picks can certainly help.

“My Buddies Will Help Me.” What if they go in too? Or don’t see it happen? Or don’t have rescue ropes. Or are too scared or panicky to act fast enough. Going for help will likely take too long.

“Emergency Personnel Will Rescue Me.” Some first responders aren’t trained for ice rescue. If not, their ability to help may be limited for safety and liability reasons. Also, responders may not be readily available, know exactly where you are, or be able to find nearby lake access. So you’re likely on your own for those first few critical minutes that make the difference to survival.

“My Buoyant Suit Will Save Me.” Flotation may buy you a few extra minutes, but it won’t get you out. So unless help arrives, you’re still on your own.

“I’ll Be Safe When I Get Out.” If you are able to self-rescue, hypothermia could be deadly unless you can warm your body core immediately.

I frightened myself with these harsh realities. Here’s sound advice

for ice travel: “No ice is 100% safe”, “Know before you go”, “Never go alone”, “Always follow the stake line” and “Don’t outride your headlights after dark.”

Learn More About OFSC Prescribed Trails At: Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs –

Craig Nicholson, The Intrepid Snowmobiler, is an International Snowmobile Hall of Fame journalist and a long-time Kawarthas cottager who also provides tips and tour info for snowmobilers at and for PWC riders at

Get Outdoors ~ Winter 2023 31 Since 1994
Photo Credit Craig Nicholson

Putting Your Foot First For The New Year

Today, at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve, most revellers sing the song Auld Lang Syne and join hands. “Auld lang syne” is Lowland Scots for “old long since/”long, long ago”. The lyrics are a poem written by Robert Burns in 1788; in 1799, it was put to music and has been used ever since to bid farewell to the old year and herald in the new.

Many early Scottish settlers of the Peterborough area would have celebrated an even older New Year’s tradition than the Burns song: “Hogmanay”, or Scottish New Year’s Eve. The word is Lowland Scots, but its origin is uncertain – possibly derived from Norman French, Manx, Norse, Anglo-Saxon, or even Ancient Greek. The elements of this holiday are a mixture of cultures: Norse winter solstice celebrations, the Celts’ Samhain, and the Vikings’ Yule. Hogmanay today is recognized as Scottish, but also has been celebrated throughout northern England.

In the days leading up to the new year, it was important that Scottish homes be thoroughly cleaned, and all debts paid. On 31 December, hearth fires were extinguished (the only time during the year) and all the ashes were removed; a fresh fire was laid and lit to begin the next year.

An important Hogmanay component is “first-footing”, which involves an appropriately “lucky” first visitor to a home: traditionally this was a tall, dark-haired man. The first-footer brought gifts of food (often a Clootie Dumpling), whisky, or fuel (small log, peat, or coal); the home’s hosts greeted him with a “wee dram” and a toast. This ceremony ensured good fortune in that household for the coming year. First-footing can have its hazards, however: in 1850, William Hutchison, son of Peterborough’s Dr John and Martha Hutchison, died when he fell over the pier while first-footing in Kirkcaldy, Scotland.

Despite such a tragedy, Hogmanay generally is seen as a happy time, and a chance to join friends and family in greeting a new year – even if some heads will suffer the next day. So … wishing everyone (Scottish or not) “Hogmanay”, and all the best for 2023.

By: Don Willcock, The Peterborough Museum & Archives, 300 Hunter St E, Peterborough 705-743-5180 Photo Credit - Hutchison House Museum

32 Winter 2023 ~ Cottage Country Lifestyle Magazine Explore Cottage Country

Dean James

We had the chance to catch up with local singer/songwriter Dean James this month, and we had a great conversation full of lots of laughs. It was wonderful to hear about where Dean comes from, how he got to be where he is today, and what has inspired him to pursue music. A true easy-going personality who is unapologetically authentic Dean kept the conversation flowing and it was an honour to hear his story.

Dean, born and raised in Peterborough, ON has been immersed in music right from the beginning. He spoke kindly and eloquently about the impression his Grandpa has had on him, raising him up through music and performing. Deans Grandpa, Doug Montgomery – a talented local performer in his own rite – took Dean under his wing early on, bringing him to local country music stages throughout Cottage Country; playing a vast selection of traditional country music. Dean James grew up on stage, going to local country jamborees and events on weekends, standing up there strumming a guitar at his Grandpas side from the time he could hold a plastic play guitar right up until he was playing the real thing right alongside him. Dean says as he was growing into the performer he is now; local legions really supported him and kept him going. Dean says: “I grew up in a musical atmosphere. Without being rushed my Grampa nourished who I was growing into. Without him I would not be doing what I am today.” During our chat he fondly recalls being small and dragging his Grandpas big ‘ol guitar to shows; he remembers that was exactly where he wanted to be. Some kids do Sundays with cartoons and cereal – Dean James did Sundays on stage, growing his musical knowledge.

In 2015 Dean jumped at the chance to move to Nashville, TN where he took a residency on Broadway at Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge. Dean says: “It was definitely a big turning point in my life, it’s when I started to take music really seriously. It was THE step for me to realise I wanted to focus on music as a career.” During his residency he fine tuned his contagiously fun stage presence alongside the best in the industry. Deans’ musical

abilities alongside his uncanny jukebox-like knowledge of country music showcases his powerful passion for music and performing.

In 2016 Dean placed third at The Next Country Music Star Talent Search, and earned the chance to take the stage at The Havelock Country Jamboree.

Since then, Dean James has been hitting the road, playing a multitude of sold-out shows and opening on big stages for the likes of Meghan Patrick and the Road Hammers.

With a voice full of emotion, a little country twang and a hint of gravelly underbelly Dean James sings from the heart, and leaves you swaying in your seat waiting for the next hit-maker to explode from the speakers. He brings strong lyrical meaning and combines it with a traditional country roots sound to bring an edgy country sound to fans. To Dean, it’s all about the show – he is a true performer, bringing to the stage an energy, and love for his music you can feel thick in the air.

Singles ‘With You’ and ‘What I’m Doing Now’ are out on all popular streaming services, and Dean let me in on his plans to release a fresh new single in 2023.

Follow Dean James on social media to keep up to date on where you will catch him next. It is a show you don’t want to miss.

Artist Spotlight ~ Winter 2023 33 Since 1994 Artist Profile

Weekend at the Cottage Recipes


Turkey and tomato on slices of toasted bread, topped with an aged cheddar cheese sauce and sprinkle of crispy bacon.


• ½-¾ pound leftover turkey, sliced

• 4 slices bread

• 1 tablespoon butter

• 4-8 tomato slices

• 8 strips of bacon, used as garnish

• ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

• For the cheddar Mornay sauce:

• 2 tablespoons butter

• ¼ small white onion, finely diced

• 2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour

• 1½ cups whole milk, scalded

• kosher salt

• pinch black pepper

• pinch cayenne pepper

• 1 tablespoon dry sherry

• ½ cup grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese


• sprinkle chopped parsley

• chopped crispy bacon

• serve with WATC BBQ Sauce


1. Cook bacon: Preheat oven to 425°F. Place bacon onto a foil-lined baking sheet, transfer to oven and cook until crispy, about 10 minutes. Remove bacon to paper towel-lined plate and pat with additional paper towel to remove excess fat. When cool to the touch, chop and reserve to the side with the chopped parsley.

2. Toast bread:  With rack in the middle position, turn oven setting to broil. Place slices of bread onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Transfer to oven and toast. Remove from oven and lightly butter each slice.

3. Prepare Mornay sauce: Scald milk in a small saucepan. Melt butter in a second medium saucepan over low heat. Add onions to butter, stir and cook for 2 minutes or until onions are soft and translucent. Sprinkle with flour and stir, cooking for 2 minutes more. Slowly add the hot milk in a steady stream, whisking as the sauce thickens, about 2 minutes. Add salt and peppers. Pass sauce through a fine sieve into a medium sized bowl. Add sherry and cheese and stir until cheese melts and the sauce is smooth.

4. Assemble sandwiches: Warm turkey in a skillet seasoned with pan juices or a knob of butter. With buttered, toasted bread already on baking sheet, add slices and morsels of turkey plus a few slices of tomato on each. Ladle the Mornay sauce over each sandwich, covering the turkey, tomato and bread. Sprinkle the top of each sandwich with Parmesan. Immediately transfer to the oven and broil until the sauce bubbles and the tops turn a light golden brown colour.

5. Garnish and serve: Transfer 1 sandwich each to luncheon plates and garnish with a sprinkle of the chopped bacon and parsley. Serve with WATC BBQ Sauce.


A rich, chocolatey cake batter stirred with grated zucchini and semisweet  chocolate chips.


• 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

• ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

• 1 teaspoon baking soda

• 1 teaspoon kosher salt

• 4 tablespoons butter (¼ cup)

• 4 tablespoons coconut oil (¼ cup)

• ¾ cup golden yellow sugar, firmly packed

• 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

• 2 eggs, room temperature

• 1 medium zucchini, grated (about 2 cups)

• 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

• non-stick cooking spray


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray and line middle with a strip of parchment paper.

2. Whisk the dry ingredients together and set aside.

3. Melt butter and coconut oil and stir together. Set aside to cool to room temperature.

4. Shred zucchini using a box grater or food processor.

5. Place cooled butter-oil mixture in a large bowl. Add sugar plus vanilla and stir until sugar is dissolved. Add eggs one at a time, stirring to combine after the addition of each.

6. Pour the dry mix in with the wet and combine, using a wooden spoon or spatula. Fold in the zucchini and almost all of the chocolate chips; reserve a few tablespoons to the side.

7. Transfer the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing it out evenly. Sprinkle the top with the remaining chocolate chips.

8. Transfer to the oven and bake for 45 - 50 minutes, or until a cake tester or toothpick comes away clean.

9. Remove from oven and place pan on a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes. Lift loaf from pan and place it directly onto the rack to cool for an additional 30 minutes.

34 Winter 2023 ~ Cottage Country Lifestyle Magazine Explore Cottage Country

Wedding Planning In 2023

First things first. You’re engaged! Congratulations!

Planning etiquette says, first you pick the location, and that’s where we come in. We would like to highlight some of the loveliest must-have venues for the 2023 wedding season, and we encourage you to call and book a tour with them, so that they may showcase all the magic and wonder each has to offer.

When picking a venue, you need to first decide on the number of guests you will have attending. With larger weddings making a comeback post COVID, once too grand venues have become the perfect choice for stylish wedding. Thinking more intimate? These venues offer specific locations on their grounds, and put together packages that suit your guest list. Here in Cottage Country, we have some hidden gems, and we want to share them with you.

Naturally you will want to choose a wedding dress that makes you feel like the best version of yourself, but don’t forget about comfort along with style. Proper fit is important so be sure to trust someone well qualified with your alterations

Are you planning a meal, or perhaps passed hors d'oeuvres? Do you need a caterer, or will your venue be able to look after the details of feeding guests?

Many florals can be sourced locally if in season, and are easier on the pocketbook if they are not special order. A reputable florist will be a great help when it comes to tracking down that special bloom you have your heart set on.

Finding the perfect officiant is something you will want to check off your list early. You must use a celebrant who is legally registered with the Province of Ontario. This less-traditional option often

provides the flexibility to customise a ceremony which celebrates your values as a couple.

Do you need transportation? Hiring a service to look after getting you from point A to point B is important. Read reviews - you want to be there on time. You can rent various sizes of vehicle, anything from a 6-seater sedan, formal limo or classic car.

Will you be hiring a DJ for your special day? Maybe a band! If you need the use of AV equipment for other parts of your day this could be an important detail. If so, remember to ask if they are willing to cover your ceremony as well as your reception.

Your wedding photos are filled with moments you will be reminiscing on for the rest of your life; you definitely want the photos to capture and reflect the feelings you had on your special day and you need someone who will take the time to listen to your wishes. Research photographer portfolios; with so many different styles you want someone who is willing to take the photos you want.

The reality is that no matter what you choose for your special day it will all be magical and full of love. Remember, the focus of the day is on each other and the special people who share in your love. Choose things that represent who the two of you are, and enjoy the ride – it only lasts a day.

Weddings & Events ~ Winter 2023 35 Since 1994

Premier Destination for Hilltop Weddings

Imagine getting married atop a hill where you can see for miles. Breathtaking views greet your guests as they ride the lift ‘up’ to your ceremony. Your photographer really will have the most beautiful backdrop for photos that will last a lifetime. But the hill isn’t the only perfectly romantic spot, head indoors for a stylish reception space complete with outdoor terrace for cocktails.

Eagle View Wedding & Event Centre is located in the heart of Ontario's Cottage Country, just two hours north of the Greater Toronto Area. Create your dream day atop their scenic view of Eagle Lake and the surrounding region. They will customize the perfect experience for you, whether you're looking for an indoor soiree or an elegant fête on Haliburton's largest sundeck.

New for Summer of 2023 is their 60 ft. observation viewing tower atop their hill; they call it the wedding in the sky! This will

36 Winter 2023 ~ Cottage Country Lifestyle Magazine Explore Cottage Country

be available for 2023 bookings and integrated into wedding packages as well. Give your guests the perfect photo op, no matter the season the view is striking.

Invite your guests to experience breathtaking views from their wedding stage atop the well-known ski hill of Sir Sam’s - because you deserve to be at the 'top of the world' on your wedding day. Guests will love taking the ski lift up, and up to your scenic ceremony – it will be a talking point for years to come.

With a planner on staff, Eagle View is able to customize the perfect experience for you; Kayla Gardiner, director of events has connections in the area to local vendors and partners which will ease the burden in planning every aspect of your special occasion. Known for her attention to detail and organizational skills, Kayla will expertly make your event vision a reality.

If you are planning for the year of 2023 call Kayla for a tour of this lovely facility, they are ready and waiting to host the wedding of your dreams!

Eagle View 1054 Liswood Road, Haliburton, ON

Weddings & Events ~ Winter 2023 37 Since 1994
38 Winter 2023 ~ Cottage Country Lifestyle Magazine Explore Cottage Country

How to Choose the Perfect Photographer

Congratulations! You just said yes to a lifetime with your best friend and soulmate and now the fun of planning your special day begins.

One of the high priority vendors to secure in your first round of vendor choices is the photographer entrusted to capture all of the beautiful memories and moments of your day. There are so many photographers; where do you start and how do you find the one?

have used. Then spend some time checking out those webpages and portfolios. Do you like the way the photographer edits the images and the way they capture the moments of their clients? I suggest creating a list of photographers you like so that you can easily return to their webpages and begin the process of narrowing down which ones really resonate with you.

Once you have narrowed the search down to two or three possibilities it is time to move onto the next step; reaching out and chatting with these photographers. Schedule your meeting for a time that both of you can attend and allow yourself time between other commitments so that you won’t feel rushed or pressured. Think about the questions you want to ask the photographer well in advance of the meeting and be prepared to answer questions about yourselves as well. Ask about the photographer’s contract; what is expected of them and what is expected of you?

As a wedding photographer I am happy to share a few easy tips to start you on your way to finding the photographer who will connect with you and your significant other and create the images that will be cherished for generations.

Remember, your photographer is one of the wedding vendors you will spend the most time with - both leading up to, and including your day - so you want to make sure that you click as a team and truly “get” each other.

First step: start researching; Google-search photographers in your area as well as asking family and friends about photographers they

After your meet ups take some time to chat with your partner about each photographer. Which photographer did you feel connected with you both? Which photographer understood your vision for your day? Which photographer do you both feel comfortable with, trusting that they will capture all of the moments and memories?

Choosing a photographer is one of the most personal decisions for your special day and if you invest the time and energy into your search; you will be rewarded by securing an incredible team member, receiving beautiful images and most likely making a new and special friend.

By Heather Doughty of Heather Doughty Photography

Weddings & Events ~ Winter 2023 39 Since 1994

Fall in Love with Iron Horse Ranch

Whether you are a traditional bride, or your taste travels a more whimsical road, a venue like Iron Horse Ranch offers a magnificent one-of-a-kind setting for your big day. This venue is rich with details that will make your wedding experience exceptional.

Located in the rolling hills of Bethany, Iron Horse Ranch is straight out of a fairy tale, with a storied stone barn, and a charming covered bridge overlooking a 2-acre pond – all situated on meticulously maintained grounds. Steeped in history, and built from salvaged and repurposed materials, the barn at Iron Horse Ranch offers rustic luxury for you to host your event with capacity for up to 200 guests. With the property and amenities at your disposal, you are able to take the reins in the planning process; hors d'oeuvres under the veranda, or in the corral? Ceremony by the pond, on

the peninsula, or perhaps in front of the aged barnboard doors? The choice is yours. The only limit at Iron Horse Ranch is your imagination.

Designed to look and feel like a century barn, the barn at Iron Horse Ranch was constructed using traditional methods of mortise and tenon masonry. The stone was sourced from the old high school in Owen Sound along with materials from the YWCA in Peterborough. The ironwork, including the gates, chains and brass door handles were rescued from the Collins Bay Penitentiary in Kingston. The cobblestones at the base of the stairwell are from the walkways around the J. W. Little Stadium at Western University. The plank flooring was salvaged from the Petawawa National Forestry Institute, while the charred panels at the back of the bar

40 Winter 2023 ~ Cottage Country Lifestyle Magazine Explore Cottage Country

are the rafters from a fire at the Lindsay jail. These features create an ambience of storied Ontario histories that is sure to impress and elevate your experience at Iron Horse Ranch.

The Wilson family, who purchased the property in 2021, invite you to dream about your perfect day at their unique location. They will work closely with you and your vendors to put together a seamless event.

Unlike other venues, Iron Horse Ranch only holds one event per weekend, ensuring couples are not rushed to be in and out. Fridays are available to you and your family for decorating and rehearsals, while Saturdays remain the common day for weddings, leaving the Sunday for a leisurely cleanup and teardown.

Not only does Iron Horse Ranch offer the venue of your dreams, they have a hand-picked list of verified vendors that they regularly suggest to couples in the planning process. From caterers to decorators, photographers and florists, the family at Iron Horse wants you to have the absolute best.

For a day full with unique details, stunning panoramas for memorable photos and personality plus, call Chelsea at Iron Horse Ranch to take a tour; you will absolutely fall in love.

Iron Horse Ranch 804 ON-7A Bethany, (250) 870-3608

Weddings & Events ~ Winter 2023 41 Since 1994

Rescue Race

Chills. If you saw the performance at the Royal Winter Fair from the sister duo from Indian River, ON who took the Rodeo Rescue Race by storm, then you know! Their amazing performance gave me absolute chills of excitement.

Shaylynn, age 13 and Ashley, age 9 were the youngest competitors in the Rodeo Rescue Race event, and took the winning spot, coming home with 2 large championship buckles; presented by Amber Marshall, star of CBC’s famous Heartland.

These two girls have been riding horses since before they could walk. They’re parents believed that if the kids showed an interest in horses, then it was important that they have proper riding lessons to build a riding foundation.

Both started lessons at the age of 5 in the English Riding Program at Stillbrook Riding Stables. Both girls excelled quickly and become very strong riders and competitors.

When Shaylynn turned 8, she aspired to ride timed rodeo events, her Mom recalls her saying “What could be more fair than riding against a clock?” Ashley followed in her footsteps at the same age to pursue rodeo riding.

In 2018 Shaylynn was able to find a coach that could help her chase her rodeo dreams. Linda Young from Trickle Creek Farms was instrumental in coaching and finding horses that would be great competitors for both girls who practiced in 3 events: Pole Bending, Barrel Racing, and the Rescue Race.

The girls love their horses fiercely, and love the adrenaline of competing and performing. They spend many hours a day training and fitting their horses, the horses are athletes and need to be in their best shape.

This year Shaylynn and Ashley competed in the Ram Rodeo Tour which made many stops across Ontario; Gray Highlands, Brooklin, Orangeville, Orillia, Norfolk, Stevensville, Exeter, New Liskeard, Tweed, Alliston, Purple Hill, Binbrook and Kemptville for the International Plowing Match.

Denise, the girls Mom says “The girls have shared a pretty awesome sisterhood this summer, travelling and competing with one another in the Ram Rodeo Tour.”

This was Ashley’s first Ram Rodeo season and she qualified for finals in 2 events: Pole Bending and the Rescue Race. Shaylynn was introduced to rodeo in 2018, in 2019 she qualified for

42 Winter 2023 ~ Cottage Country Lifestyle Magazine

the Ram Rodeo finals in Pole Bending and Barrel Racing and in 2021 Shaylynn competed and won the Ram Rodeo Jr. Barrels Weekend and Year end titles. This year Shaylynn qualified for the Ram Rodeo finals in all three events: Pole Bending, Barrel racing and the Rescue Race. Shaylynn won the year end Jr. Pole Bending title and she and Ashley finished 3rd in the Rescue Race regular season.

In 2022 The girls obtained their first ever sponsor – Kicking Cowgirl Designs operated by Kimberly Dawn from Bobcaygeon ON. The girls have always loved Kicking Cowgirl Designs and have been loyally wearing the brand but are thrilled to now be a part of the KCD family.

What a year it has been for these girls – being invited to the Royal Winter Fair was amazing since no Jr. events perform at the Royal. The Rescue Race is an open event for all ages and there was a range of competitors but Shaylynn and Ashley were the youngest competitors. There were 5 rescue race teams that qualified for the finals and the Royal Winter Fair Invitational. The Royal Winter Fair was an enormous opportunity – the biggest one for the girls yet; they were both excited and nervous all at the same time. The girls walked into the Royal hoping to be strong competitors but taking home the win at the Royal was beyond their wildest dreams!

The girls won the first go ‘round at 9.83 seconds, the coliseum was empty except for a few family and friends; they took the second go round at 9.67 seconds in front of a packed house of 7000 people who gave them an incredible standing ovation.

Shaylynn and Ashley said winning the Rescue Race at the Royal Winter Fair was

“an absolutely phenomenal feeling”.

Being invited to compete at the Royal Winter Fair was an amazing opportunity in itself, especially for the 100th anniversary; and taking home the win? An accomplishment and memory that will last a lifetime!

Kids Corner ~ Winter 2023 43

Do You Want to Build a Snowman?

Sometimes our family gets together to build a snowman. The grownups have to help because someone has rolled a snowball far too big to carry, and we all have to work together. Other times, my kids will make rows of the tiniest snowmen you’ve ever seen!

If you can’t make it outside to explore today, try these ideas below to give you some snowman joy.

Thumbprint Frosty ✔ White paint


Construction paper

Rag or paper towel

Dip your thumb into the white paint and press it onto the paper. Too much paint will leave a blob of white paint with no fingerprints, so try to use a light amount of paint and maybe do a practice run on your rag or paper towel. Make a thumbprint for each snowball stacked up. The hardest part is just waiting for the paint to dry. Once it finally dries, use your markers to draw cute little faces, stick arms, buttons, hats and more.

Marshmallow Snowman

Stack your marshmallows on each other and stick ‘em together with icing. The graham cracker acts as the base of the marshmallows so they don’t fall over. Stick your chocolate chips on as eyes and buttons and add your orange ‘carrot’ nose. Poke the pretzel sticks in as arms, and then you have a cute little snowman…until you eat him.


Jacquelyn Toupin lives with her family in a heritage farmhouse that has been in her family for several generations. You can follow her on Instagram @my.sacred.wild

44 Winter 2023 ~ Cottage Country Lifestyle Magazine Explore Cottage Country
Regular size marshmallows
Graham cracker
Pretzel sticks
Chocolate chips
Orange candy (1/2 m&m works nicely)
Some icing
Q-Tip Snow Picture ✔ White paper ✔ Black marker ✔ Orange Paper ✔ Blue or black paper ✔ White paint ✔ Q-Tip
Cut a circle out of your white paper to be the head of your snow dude. Glue it on the bottom of your picture. Cut out a triangle nose out of the orange paper and glue it on his face. Use your marker to draw a mouth ‘made out of coal’. We made our snowman looking up at the falling snow. You can make yours any way you’d
Now you’ll dip your Qtip into some white paint and dot little snowflakes all over your picture like falling snow. A wintery masterpiece.

Nestled in the heart of the rugged Haliburton Highlands, Sir Sam’s Ski Hill and Event Centre is a favourite winter recreation destination for families across central Ontario. With 14 runs over and through rugged Canadian Shield terrain and hardwood forest, Sir Sam’s offers a variety of terrain for all abilities. The resort and event centre’s location – just a short drive north of the Kawarthas — provides great value through superior snow conditions, focused customer service and a less crowded environment….and it also has the largest licensed deck and chalet in the Highlands.

With rolling open meadow runs and winding forested trails, the resort’s 90 acres of skiable space offers a unique experience with each run. For those looking for more thrill from the hill they will find it in our terrain park or ski/board cross track. When it’s time to make your way back to the top our 7 lifts ensure the wait is short! Our slideon, slide-off carpet lift also makes the trip up a cinch for both beginners and those with young children.

The quality of the conditions is one of Sir Sam’s hallmarks, with guests routinely raving about both the snow and the grooming. Sir Sam’s Ski & Ride is blessed by nature: its slopes are north facing with a spectacular view over Eagle and Moose Lakes and located in an area of consistently heavy snowfall. In combination with the

short lift lines and uncrowded atmosphere, guests enjoy more time on some of the best snow in central Ontario.

An important part of any ski resort is its ability to teach aspiring skiers and boarders of all levels. The Sir Sam’s ski school offers a full range of group, semi-private and private lessons with over 40 instructors. Sir Sam’s is also pleased to offer Snow School Camps for all levels over the holidays and March break. Training the next generation of snow lovers is our passion.

Sir Sam’s first opened in 1965, and for 55 years was owned and managed by the Bishop family. In that half-century, the legacy of family winter fun fostered by the Bishops has been enjoyed by and passed through generations of families.  In 2021, Sir Sam’s welcomed new owners, the Wilkinson, thus starting a new era for the storied ski hill.

With the new owners comes a fresh new contemporary look for the chalet highlighted by a stylish makeover of the main floor paired with the introduction of Rhubarb on the Hill restaurant. Here, our Chef has taken all the favourites, given them a Rhubarb twist, and turned out a delicious menu for those on a break from the hill, or looking for an evening out. Complementing the new menu is a brand new 20-foot bar facing the hill with its take-out window for

the 150 person deck. The bar has been stocked with a carefully curated selection of local craft beers, signature cocktails, and hot beverages from our barista coffee bar.

While the hill provides all the thrills the fully renovated Chalet now houses up to a 250-person event centre for weddings, celebrations or corporate events in a stunning setting. The event centre is now open year round. Pair your event with some time on-the-hill activity and give your guests a truly unique experience.

For ski hill hours, rates and online ticket sale, as well as restaurant hours and menu, please visit For inquiries around events please contact us at

Home & Cottage ~ Winter 2023 45 Since 1994

What’s Needling You?

Ah the iconic Evergreen! To most of us, one Evergreen tree looks very much like another. But a more careful look and even a quick whiff, reveals how distinctive each can be. And knowing the differences between say a Spruce, a Hemlock and a Balsam Fir adds enormously to our enjoyment of nature. Although the needles are your main clue, many species also have a unique silhouette, which helps you to recognize them from a distance.

Below you will find a list of the needle characteristics of

the main Evergreen families (biologists call these Conifers – because these trees bear cones) as well as some simple memory aids or "mnemonics" to help you recall them. To practice these mnemonics, try to identify the conifers in your yard while using the sayings from the chart below, while exploring your back yard, a nearby park or during a winter nature walk. You might also want to make a display of the different types of conifer needles (and cones) that you’ve found in your area.

“Get the Point?” - Needle characteristics and mnemonics

Note - The mnemonics begin with the same letter or sound as the type of conifer.

Spruce needles "spiral" along the branch and the needles are sharp like "spikes." They are therefore painful to the touch. Because they are rounded, they roll or "spin" between your thumb and finger.

Fir needles are 'flat" and very "flexible." They don't roll!

Pine needles are usually very long like "pins." White Pine, a common species in the east, has the same number of needles as the number of letters in the word "white," namely five.

Cedars have "scale"-like, flattened leaves, just like fish that live in the sea! ("sea"dar)

Hemlock needles are very small, green on top and appear white underneath. To connect the needles to the word hemlock, think of the prefix "hemi" which means half. Hemlock needles are half white and half green.

Juniper: two types of leaves (often on the same tree), small scale-like leaves, similar to those of a cedar, as well as longer (1/4 inch), dark blue-green needle-like leaves. Think of a "pair" of different leaves and juni"pair"

Larches or Tamaracks are "leafless" in winter. The rest of the year, they have tufts of up to 20 very soft, "limp” needles

Evergreens - The Shape You are In…

Here are some descriptions of the shape of typical conifers found in our area:

• White spruce: symmetrical, conical, wide, not pointed at top

• Balsam fir: narrow, symmetrical, tapered, pointed at the top. Resembles a church spire.

• Eastern white cedar: dense, cone-shaped, branches often go right to the ground

• White pine: often asymmetrical, branches at right angles to trunk, sometimes look like large wings

Get the Feel & Your Nose Knows…

Gather small sprigs of as many of the following as you can (Eastern White Cedar, White Pine, Red Pine, Scotch Pine, Western Cedar, Juniper, White Spruce, Balsam Fir, Hemlock) or any other conifer growing in your area. Always think about harvesting honorably, taking just a small amount from one place and then moving on to the next. Stuff each of the sprigs you gathered into a clean white

sock far down into the toe so it can’t be seen. Ask you friends to stick their hands into each sock and just using their sense of touch, ask them to try to identify the needles. You’ll be surprised at the variety of needle shapes and sizes.

Notice how conifer trees have a different smell? Whether it is pine, cedar, spruce, fir, or hemlock, each species produces its own signature scent. Conifer trees produce terpenes, a chemical compound that protects them from insect and fungal infestation. There are two principal molecules in conifers: pinene, which has a piney odor, and limonene, which has more of a citrusy smell. Any combination of these two molecules, among some others, give conifer trees their distinctive scent. Using your socks stuffed with sprigs, can your friends identify each conifer by its smell alone?

Submitted by Jacob Rodenburg, Executive Director of Camp Kawartha, an award-winning outdoor education centre and summer camp.

Home & Cottage ~ Winter 2023 47 Since 1994
Photo Credit

Prickly Patients

Kawartha Wildlife Centre

Watch your speed! Porcupines are well adjusted for defense against wild predators but their slow-moving ways make them high risk targets for vehicle collisions. Just this year, we have had three orphaned porcupines, all for the same reason, their mother was killed by a car.

Porcupines are notoriously difficult to raise in captivity and not just because of their quills (though this is an added challenge!) but because they have very sensitive digestive tracts and need an abundance of natural foods to keep their diet and gut flora balanced.

Baby porcupines, called porcupettes, are born precocial, mobile, and fully furred (yes, they ARE born with quills, though the quills are soft at birth and only fully harden after a few days!), but they generally rely on their mothers for the first 4-6 months of their lives. Our first orphan, patient 22-420, arrived in the middle of spring at just a day old. The vulnerable newborn was in critical condition, found beside their deceased mother at the side of the road. Two more orphans arrived later through the year, one in August and one in September, with the same condition. These porcupettes all needed room to climb and explore, and had each other for company during their time in captivity prior to release.

Did you know?

Porcupines have internal reproductive organs, so without an x-ray it is impossible to determine sex. In the case of an injured adult, we would need imaging to tell us if the patient were pregnant, in order to medicate them safely and accordingly. Luckily for orphans, it doesn't affect their care or how we treat them, so it is always a bit of a mystery!

Kawartha Wildlife Centre is volunteer-run wildlife rehabilitation centre located in Peterborough County in the heart of the Kawarthas. As a charity relying solely on community support and receiving no government funding for care of wildlife, we are in urgent need of financial support to support our patient care and treatments.  To support wildlife in need, please consider making a donation:

Thank you for supporting our work with Ontario's wildlife!

LocalHumane Societies

Lakefield Animal Welfare Society

2887 Lakefield Rd., Lakefield • 705-652-0588

Humane Society Of Kawartha Lakes

111 McLaughlin Rd., Lindsay • 705-878-4618 •

Animal Rescue Krew (ARK) 3307 Lakefield Rd., Lakefield • 705-651-0069

Peterborough Humane Society 385 Lansdowne St. E., Peterborough • 705-745-7676

Home Again Bancroft

613-474-3450 •

48 Winter 2023 ~ Cottage Country Lifestyle Magazine Explore Cottage Country

Getting Your Dog Outside This Winter

Getting your dog outside in the winter for work and play is good exercise and lots of fun, it also helps to avoid bad indoor behaviour!

If your dog is used to getting outside every day, it’s important to keep that routine going–even in the winter. For most dogs, not getting enough time outside is a recipe for trouble. A lack of exercise and mental stimulation can leave your dog feeling bored and restless; and a bored dog is much more likely to get into mischief.

Signs Of A Bored Or Restless Dog

If your dog is misbehaving it could be a sign that he isn’t being physically and mentally challenged enough. A bored or restless dog is more like to:

• Chew furniture, shoes, or pillows

• Nose around in trash cans or cupboards

• Bark and jump

• Beg you for attention

• Whether it’s June or January, taking your dog outside is a sure-fire cure to doggy boredom. So, bundle up and get out there!

Training In The Snow Is Fun And Challenging For Your Dog

Playing with your dog indoors is great. Obedience training, mini-agility courses, and even fetch are all possible in a house or apartment. But, can your dog really run and let loose inside? Probably not. No matter how much you hate the cold, you can’t stay inside all winter. Getting your dog outside in the winter is a must!

Benefits Of Training In The Snow

If you’re looking for an easy and stimulating way to burn your dog’s energy there’s not much that beats playing or training in the snow!

• The deeper the snow, the harder your dog will have to work to walk, run and jump through it.

• The world becomes a game of hide-and-seek when it snows! Your dog can smell things but must search around to find them. This can make walks and even free time in your backyard very mentally stimulating.

• Commands and tricks that are old-hat to your dog become more challenging.

• The snow is fun and exciting! Be sure to follow me on Social for more tips! @turnerandpoochtraining You can also email me at

Pets & Vets ~ Winter 2023 49 Since 1994

Arts in the Coboconk Norland Area

Coboconk Chamber of Commerce

With such scenic views and abundant history, how could people not be inspired to create? The Coboconk and Norland area has a deep history of arts.

In fact, group of seven artist, JEH Mcdonald, and his son Thoreau frequented the area and captured the beauty of Coboconk and Norland in many paintings. Today, you can still find local artists capturing stunning scenes of our area and images. The Trent Severn Trail Towns Paddle Art tour is just one of many examples! These lovingly decorated paddles pay tribute to the Waterway and the rich canoe culture in the Trail Towns region. Four of these paddles, painted by local artists, are located in Coboconk at the Chamber office, M’s Bake Shop, Fire or Ice, and Rosie’s Dockside Restaurant – come see them for yourself!

Norland also has many wonderful and whimsical handmade creations. From fairy gardens to hand carved wooden bears, the area certainly does not lack artistic ability. In Rosedale, the parkette features wonderful seasonal displays as well as a free little library and an outdoor piano for music enthusiasts.

Our communities have always been magical year-round, and many volunteers help to make it happen! The Residents of Rosedale, Coboconk Garden Club, Norland Horticultural Society, and the Beautification Committee work hard to make our communities visually stunning from season to season – and more creativity is always welcome!

If you have ideas for how to keep the arts present in our communities, or if you would like to join in on the fun and help make it happen, please reach out to Remember to like and follow the Coboconk, Norland & Area Chamber of Commerce on Facebook for updates on initiatives, projects, workshops, and more. You can also visit www.

New Membership Packages

Lindsay + District Chamber of Commerce

The Lindsay + District Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce our new membership package for 2023! Be sure to check your email and our website for new pricing and membership levels.

This year, in addition to strong advocacy at all levels of government, robust marketing and promotion and a variety of other benefits, member businesses can anticipate a hearty Professional Development Series on a variety of topics that affect them directly such as Social Media Management, Human Resource Development, Budgets & Finance and Health & Safety.

As always, we will be bringing engaging and fun events to our membership and community so be sure to check out our website, www. to stay up to date on what is happening.

Don’t forget to follow us on social media @ ldchamber1962 across all platforms, and if you’re interested in joining the LDCC visit us online, give us a call or stop into our office at 180 Kent St. West in Lindsay.

On behalf of the Lindsay + District Chamber of Commerce, we wish everyone a safe and happy new year and look forward to connecting in 2023!

New Holiday Decor

Fenelon Falls & District Chamber of Commerce

Just in time for the return of the biggest Santa Day event in Fenelon Falls history, downtown Fenelon Falls was decked out for the holidays; and the festive decor is here for you to see all season long. As you cross the Lindsay Street bridge, you’ll pass the beautiful winter baskets filled with seasonal greenery and the Tourism Office decorated with hanging baskets. As you enter downtown after dark, you’ll be greeted by lighted winter banners, garland and giant red bows adorning the street light poles on Colborne Street.

The Fenelon Falls & District Chamber of Commerce (FFDCC) was able to make the dream of new holiday decor a reality with funding from the Government of Canada’s Tourism Relief Fund, through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario). The project was supported with funds that were delivered by Regional Tourism Organization 8.

As we move into the New Year, the FFDCC is already planning for the Kawartha Lakes Country Living Show, April 21 to 23rd, 2023. This premier home, cottage and outdoor show offers local businesses and organizations the opportunity to meet new customers and reconnect with current and former customers. If you’re new to the area or you’re spending more time in the region, the KL Country Living Show is the perfect place to get connected and build relationships. For business owners it’s the place to kick start your summer season. For more information on the show and how to reserve your booth visit or call (705)887-3409.

For those looking to try something new in 2023 there are a number of opportunities; from quilting to wool painting, live music or karaoke, curling to snowmobiling. You’ll find something new to learn or a place to spend time with friends and family this winter in Fenelon Falls.

50 Winter 2023 ~ Cottage Country Lifestyle Magazine Explore Cottage Country CHAMBER NEWS
Home & Cottage ~ Winter 2023 51 Since 1994 It’s Your Market & We Deliver it! Contact us today for your next advertising campaign 705-313-2245 Print Advertising + Digital Advertising Multi Award Winning Marketing, Promotion & Design