Growing up, I’d often hear my mom proclaim that she was going on strike. I didn’t get it at the time. As a stay-at-home-mom, she drove us around, cooked supper, cleaned the house and had time for herself…so what could be so bad and why would she ever need to strike? In comparison, I had a social life to deal with, a part-time job, homework, boys, parents wanting to know my every move, parties to attend, secrets to keep and various friends to juggle and make sure everyone was getting along in order to keep the drama at bay. My life was COMPLICATED as a teen and every now and then, Mom would pop in with a threat to strike and a complaint that no one helped her around the house and I’d be all…strike? Are you kidding me? Who’s going to make me my supper??!!
Periodically, mom got our attention…we’d go back to helping out in the kitchen or clean our rooms…maybe do a little laundry…and things would eventually settle back down again to where my mother would go back to doing all the mom-things we expected her to be doing to make life easier for us (not that we appreciated it or anything.)
Recently, I took a page from my mom’s parenting book and not only threatened…I totally BAILED! I struck so hard I packed an overnight bag, picked up some snacks to keep me happy, and completely walked out of my home leaving kids and dog behind.
And let me tell you…IT WAS SENSATIONAL!!!
For starters, I have to declare that Curtains’ readers are the most amazing people in the world! A few weeks ago, I wrote the “Thanks for Waiting” post about how I’ve been dealing with some health issues over the last few months and the next thing you know, I received a message from a woman I think the absolute world of, who offered me her cottage to get away from it all and take a breather. “You need a break” she proclaimed and went on to tell me she had the perfect solution…time at her beautiful cottage just a half hour from my home…to spend a little down time, catch up on work, escape, rest and relax.
I jumped at it!
The timing was perfect.
Admittedly at the final hour, I had trouble getting away. Things were blowing up at home and schedules were a little nuts…I’d just been to the doctor and was put on a bunch of medications for another sinus infection and was feeling pretty run down…I had to sort out who could take care of the dog while both kids had very busy schedules for the upcoming weekend…I’d have the car with me which meant sorting out drives and everything else that needed to happen to make this not-so-well-oiled machine work…we had family in town visiting…we were down to one house key and I needed to get a few made, I had a house showing I’d need to cancel, I didn’t have any laundry done and needed groceries to both leave for the kids and take with me, PLUS I had some work deadlines to get accomplished! EVERYTHING seemed to be stacking against me and just putting a few clothes in an overnight bag and grabbing a couple of essentials seemed like a heinous task that somehow, I managed to pull together (after a good cry) and, without a whole lot of thought for how it was all going to work…I JUST LEFT.
On a beautiful sunny Wednesday afternoon, I arrived at the cottage and immediately found BLISS! I’d seen a few photos ahead of time but Pennant Brook Cottage was WAY BETTER than I could ever have imagined.
It helped that I arrived on a GORGEOUS Fall day…a spectacularly warm afternoon with the sun beating through the large windows overlooking the water and various decks with Adirondack chairs that were simply begging me to pour a cup of tea and JUST SIT.
Which is exactly what I did.
For six days and five glorious nights…I sat. I worked. I did nothing. I thought. I drank tea. I healed. I dreamt. I meditated. I listened to music. I napped. I ate. I breathed in the air around me and completely took a break from everything else that was happening in my life.
On one of the nights, I had a sleepover with my friend and business partner as we brainstormed and spent a bit of time looking ahead at the next few months while bonding over cheesecake. Following that, I had a sleepover with my folks as well as my Aunt and Uncle who were visiting from Newfoundland…we had a fabulous time chatting and relaxing, enjoying a delicious supper together, playing a fabulous game of cards and enjoying a chat that went well into the wee hours of the morning. On Friday night, one of my best friends arrived with more food to re-stock me for a few more days as we curled under blankets, ate Chinese Food, listened to music and chit-chatted into the evening before hitting the sack and enjoying a fabulous breakfast the next morning. Saturday brought a bit of bad weather but as the rain poured from the heavens outside, two dear friends arrived for an afternoon of tea, snacks and friendship.
In between all of the visits I managed to catch up on a few TV shows, check a few things of my work’s to-do list, and even managed to pop in to town for a few hours on Sunday to take in a volleyball game. On my final day at the cottage…another spectacularly glorious and sun-filled day, I gathered both my youngest and our pup and settled in for a few hours of work as we sat in the living room and enjoyed our surroundings. Me, finishing up a few deadlines. My youngest, catching up on homework. Our pup…completely enjoying his time on the water (which made me feel a wee bit guilty for not having him there with me the entire time!)
Pennant Brook Cottage was EXACTLY what I needed at the exact moment I needed it (even though I didn’t realize how badly!)
Nestled on the water in West Pennant, just past Sambro and Crystal Crescent Beaches, this cottage had everything required for the perfect getaway alone…and likewise, would be an awesome spot if you wanted to spend it with a crowd!
The moment you step in, you’re delighted by beautiful artwork and a comfort and warmth that completely engulfs you. Absolutely everything you need is at your fingertips with every detail thought out to make your stay at the cottage, absolutely BLISS. There was nothing missing…nothing I needed…nothing I could have asked for that wasn’t readily available to me.
From cooking with beautiful appliances, to relaxing in a comfortable setting, to comfy beds, a gorgeous bathroom, a fabulous den, amazing living room, two fireplaces, two bedrooms plus a den that could be converted to a third and a pull out in the living room, heated floors, fabulous music system, books and games and everything you could possibly desire…it was all there. All thought out in great detail…the perfect escape.
By the end of it all…my kids were ready for me to head back to reality (as was my brother who was worn out completely from driving them around and caring for the dog!) I was relaxed, refreshed and much more rested than I’d been for some time. I’d completely stepped away from everything…and took a little time just for me.
Life is busy. At times…overwhelming. Taking a break from it all…going on strike from the ordinary…taking a little time to appreciate who you are and what you do for others (and allowing them to see it too), was exactly what was needed to set things right again.
I bailed on life, escaped the hum-drum and completely walked away from every demand on my life for 6 whole days and it was BEYOND FANTASTIC.
It won’t take so long…before I do it again!
- A HUGE thank you to my friend, Lynn, for her amazing cottage! You and I both know that I owe you the world. You changed my life the moment I met you and I’m forever thankful for everything you’ve done for me and my family.
- Thanks to my kids for not wrecking the house when I was gone. To everyone who popped out for a visit…it was so wonderful to spend a little special time with you. And to my brother, THANK YOU for picking up the slack when I completely went on strike and stepped away for a few days.
- For more information about renting Pennant Brook Cottage, visit them online. It was a wonderful place in the Fall…but I can imagine how delightful it would be at any time of year…with or without the people you adore!
- My business partner and I brainstormed a great deal for our company, ECM Media…making plans for the upcoming year. If you’re a company interested in finding out more about working with influencers in Atlantic Canada, gives us a call! We’d love to meet you.
- For information on the “Queen” cuff in the first photo…visit my friend Lori at Farm Fresh Style and she’ll custom make one for you (the “Queen” one she gifted me for my 50th birthday this year!)
And finally…if anyone else has a cottage they think I should escape to…send me a message. I’d LOVE to do this again!