Posted by: purityseekers | September 15, 2008

Memories…(lots of pix… sorry for those with slow internet!)

My parents made a huge decision this past year… to sell our cottage.  I have so many wonderful memories from the summer’s we stayed there as a child, but it was a great choice on their part to sell.  So much has changed in all of our lives, and since my brother & his family will be home from Guatemala each summer, we’ll all be spending most of our time with them at their cottage.  It is a burden they no longer have to bear, and God made the sale go quickly and smoothly!

The other day we went out to get an old motorcycle that belonged to my brother, so I made sure to get lots of pictures!

Here are the kids running down the camp road.  I had fun reminiscing about all the times we ran down this same road as children.  We’d go up the long camp road (actually the driveway) and then walk along the dirt road to a little store where we’d buy penny candy 🙂

My parents by the 2 trees in front of the camp!  They have shared many fond memories here themselves; especially my Mom.  Her father built the camp and she spent summers there as a child too!  Aren’t they the cutest couple??  Still going strong after 53+ years!!!

Here you can see the cottage and the beach we raked out in the Spring and played endlessly in throughout the summer weeks!  Rain or shine, hot or cold… we were swimming!  It was also our bathtub, since the camp didn’t have a bathroom! It was in this body of water that I learned to swim, dive, do back summersaults, had underwater tea parties, was saved from drowning by a girl who lived close by & where I saved my oldest niece from drowning, where I learned how to drive a boat, where I caught my first fish and found many a disgusting clam.  It is where I watched sunfish and fed them bologna so they’d nibble my toes while I dangled them off the dock, where my brother and I would sycronize swim (haha… what a sight that must have been), where I’d ride on my Dad’s back, where we would soap down the upside down canoe and slide on our bellies into the water… the memories are endless!!! 

Here are my children enjoying their last visit to camp…

Me and the kids 🙂  I now have the 2 bouys at my home and will be hanging them from my kids clubhouse!

My parents took down the little chalkboard where they would write special announcements like "Happy 4th" or, "Happy Birthday".  They turned over the last message to find the message they wrote welcoming my oldest son into the world back in 1997!!  He thought that was SOOO cool!!!

I had the kids go and check out the "fairy garden" where my sister and brother and I would go when we first got to camp so we could make our little play area!  We’d rake it all out nicely and set up rock tables and chairs and little pathways and it was SO much fun!!

The old fireplace.  I remember how we’d save all of our paper trash to help light the fire for cooking our meals.  We burned anything back then!!  I thought it was great to hunt around for pinecones, pine needles, small sticks… anything that would catch on fire!  Then my Dad would get it really hot and we’d have hot dogs, burgers and chicken sprayed with a vinegar solution!  MMMM.  My Dad always folded the cheese JUST right by turning in each corner.  Funny the things you remember.  Even though we’d occasionally eat a few pine needles…I doubt I will ever taste such a delicious burger ever again!  This fireplace also served a few other purposes, such as frying up those gross clams we’d find (but never ate) & "getting rid" of some annoying caterpillars.  I remember one year we had SO many caterpillars I’d have dreams of the climbing all over me, so when my brother gathered them all up and put them in a pot and roasted them over the fire… I did not mind at all!!! haha

Here’s the living room with the huge fireplace we’d cozy up around when it was chilly!  Up to the left was the loft and below that were the bedrooms.  Sleeping at camp was peaceful and quiet.  When it would rain, the sound of the rain on the roof would lull us to sleep.  And we never had tv, so we actually spent time together.  Go figure!  We played game after game and read comic books and drew pictures.  I learned how to play cribbage the year I was 12 and beat my Dad 12 out of 12 games! (unless he was just being nice!!!) haha I still love cribbage to this day and actually just beat my Mom the other night!  I still got it!!! haha

I climbed up into the loft and took a picture of our kitchen.  I can think of memories even that deal with each and every room!!  Washing our hair in the sink with cold pond water that was pumped in from the lake, hunting around for candy that my parents kept in an old breadbox and other little places to keep it safe from ants, and climbing through the window onto the porch (which is now a doorway that you can see to the left).  When it was a window, I always hoped the heavy old window wouldn’t come crashing down on me!  We really weren’t supposed to go onto the porch that way, but that 2 seconds it saved us from walking around the fireplace was important to us, I guess!!

The outhouse.  This one isn’t the original, but it has been around for a few years.  This one is a lot more "user friendly" than the one we had to use when I was a kid.  I remember sitting there reading the "Ode to an outhouse" poster on the wall and all the things we’d write as kids.  Who loved who… or so and so "was here" or any of those goofy things kids write on bathroom walls haha.  The spiders up in the corner creeped me out and I would try to get out of there as fast as possible!!!  One year, as I was coming out, the neighbors German Shephard chased me down the hill and bit me on the back of my leg!  Sheesh…nothing like making a bad experience even worse!!

And this is where we went when it was too dark out to go to the outhouse.  The "porta potty".  There is a picture of me somewhere that my brother took.  I think my sister opened the curtain and he snapped the picture while I sat there cracking up and yelling at the same time!!! 

And before we left I made sure the kids came over with me to pick some teaberry leaves.  I loved to chew on them as a kid and wish I could find Teaberry gum at the local stores because it was SOOOO good!!!

Here’s the tree that our cat, Sapphire, would climb to get up onto the roof!  We used to climb a ladder and play up on the roof a lot!  I remember loving to be up there, but then hated trying to get down!

We all went out onto the porch and the kids picked a few feathers off the wall where my Mom would put pretty ones she’d find!  The porch is where we played games.  My favorite game of all time that we played was "Kismet".  It’s like Yahtzee but with colored dice!  The little papers we used to keep score were all kept in the box year after year and we had fun looking through who played with us.  Many of our names were made up and really funny!! 

A silhouette of my 3 oldest looking out one last time at the lake…

Goodbye little old camp… you’ll be missed 🙂  Thanks for the memories!!

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Responses

  1. My family had a camp similar (though no outhouse, there was indoor plumbing and electricity). It was sold several years ago. I can relate to your emotions. I am so glad that your children were able to share in your memories.

  2. That was such a heart felt goodbye which came through loud and clear in your post. What sweet memories and beautiful pictures to remember it. And your parents ARE the cutest couple. That is a wonderful picture of them. It must be such a bittersweet feeling letting go of their camp. Thanks for sharing the memories.
    I am also a fan of cribbage.

    Kim

  3. Thank you so much for posting this Bridge! I just sat and cried this morning after enjoying my own memories of our special childhood summers at camp. The pictures are beautiful and really captured it perfectly.

  4. Oh Bridget – this made me want to cry! There was a place we went when I was a child, my uncle's "camp" on the river – he still owns it, and has since retired and built his home there. Still, we never go down as often as we once did… it's just different now.

    BTW – did I ever tell you thank you for the prizes? I've used the bag so much – but I can't bear to use the dishcloth because it is so nice, lol! It sits in my drawer, where I pull it out and admire it now and then. I'll use it one day – but I know you had to put so much trouble into it that I hate to soil it!

    Anyway, hope your day is wonderful… thanks for all the pictures – they are lovely!

  5. oh how precious, how did I miss this? What wonderful memories. Thanks for sharing

  6. It's too bad that other members of the McCourtney family did not get to share the same "wonderful" memories that you had, perhaps you should ask your mother how she came about inheriting the camp under false pretenses. Don;t you ever wonder about your cousins from the McCourtney side? Don't you find it strange that there is no communication? I'm sure it's excused away with more lies….. It's because of your families fraudulent acts that tore a family apart, and then become "born again"…..give me a break.

  7. yeah too bad you are not the only ones to have enjoyed thier childhood summers at that camp but the camp and the memories were ripped away from us by your mother and her evil ways. never allowing family members to go out there to enjoy it. So lots of hard feelings over the loss of the camp but none for your family.

  8. WOW… first Bridget I would like to apologize to you and your mother and to everyone reading this and when I say this I mean the above 2 comments. Completely uncalled for. Second I would like to say I am writing this as Bridgets friend not as Shawn’s wife. He has his own thoughts on this.

    Next generation grudges! Are you kidding me! This family needs to get over this whole camp thing. I have heard about it for 12 years! The involved parties are adults. They know what they did, right or wrong. People change their hearts change or as the above comment “born again” maybe some one did do things to hurt other on purpose I think not! For anyone to say that is awful.

    As for your memories being ripped away?? Are you for real! So because you did not get to go to the “camp” you are not the person you could have been!

    Judy and Bridget are both good people! I know Bridget better than I know myself and she could not have become the person she is if she was raised by someone like you are describing! Calling someone evil as you whom ever you are is not OK. That’s harsh!

    I can not believe after all theses years whom ever you people are go one and see the faces of 5 amazing children and all you can do is bash their mother and grandmother! All because there are lots of hard feelings of the loss of material things!

    I think it is time for you all to get over your parents anger! This was there battle not yours! If you feel so strongly to have your own memories maybe you should contact the new owners and buy it from them!

  9. I too had many great memories "Out to Camp". Like you said, the best hamburgers and hot dogs a person could have including the pine quills. Dad and I rebuilt the fireplace once, where I learned how to mix cement! Loved the old glider on the front porch, sat there for many hours listening to the loons. Your Mom and Dad did a great job keeping the place up. It looks great from your pictures. Will miss the camp, but will always have those fond memories, thanks for the photos, you have a great looking family. Love Ya – Nick


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