September 2018 NewsletterNewsletter | September 02, 2018 | Nik Manojlovich
HELLO, SEPTEMBER! SURPRISE ME!
This month I thought I’d share a few stories about some recent, true-life cottage experiences. Of course, life at the cottage can be loads of fun, especially when good friends and good food and drinks are close at hand. But this past month we learned to expect the unexpected, stay calm and just enjoy!
JUST SHOOT ME!
It’s safe to say that Carol and I are always enthusiastic about what we’re doing – when an idea comes to us, we hash out the logistics and then, run with it. Thankfully, we always try to stay pretty positive no matter what happens; after all, we can overcome anything, right? … well, almost!
This was never more apparent than when we were shooting a little story called DINNER ON THE DOCK. It seemed quite simple really: set up a gorgeous dinner on the dock, augment the cottage service ware with beautiful things from our friends at HILLHOME.CA and cinch the deal with some of our most popular summer recipes.
That action-packed shoot day was shaping up to be a success: the GAZPACHO, BEEF TENDERLOIN, POTATOES, ROMAINE SALAD and PEACH PIE all turned out perfectly. Carol’s daughter Kait was the perfect set-up assistant, and with the sun shining and the loons calling, I was ready for my close up!
Sorry, let me repeat, (cups hands around mouth) “I’M READY FOR MY CLOSE-UP!”
Sheesh, just shoot me already – gale force winds stirred up, and I hope yelling into the mic picks up over the roar of the wind! Murphy’s Law, right? Despite the challenge, we made it through, had a ton of fun, and enjoyed an incredible DINNER ON THE DOCK. Just goes to show, we can control a great many things but never, ever the weather!
Hours after our outdoor shoot, we were back at it, packing up props, returning the outdoor furnishings to the dock, cleaning the cottage and then, just because we couldn’t let a golden opportunity pass us by, we stuffed and processed 16 jars of CLASSIC GARLIC DILL PICKLES all before Carol’s husband and her family arrived for the weekend.
No lie, five minutes after taking the final jar of pickles out of the canning pot, the front door opened and guests started arriving. I love having people up for the weekend, but I was most excited to see one guest in particular – a very enthusiastic, extremely handsome 2-year-old French bulldog named Newman.
Yeah, so Newman and I bonded – did we ever! He and I snuck down to the dock leaving everyone playing Gin in the sunroom – I remember laying my head back on an inflatable thinking “My goodness, I could just doze…”
Next thing I knew, I woke up to a bunch of concerned voices calling out for Newman. It was like a bad dream – panic (Nik) and hysteria (Carol) set in. To everyone’s relief, Newman eventually came bounding out of the bush like a Tasmanian devil strung out on Red Bull. I was so relieved until I got a whiff.
Newman had done what dogs do and found something VERY funky in the bush, then did his best Adele impression and went seriously rolling in the deep.
I volunteered to give him his first bath – two different shampoos while breathing through my mouth to stop gagging. His mom and dad gave him a second bath, touching really, like a cottage family portrait, except for the part where they doused the little guy in homemade tomato sauce to neutralize the stench! I swear, we were all in stitches by the end, and poor Newman went back to smelling like a rose!
LOOK FOR THE JOY!
I think we’ll always remember that weekend at the cottage as being especially amazing because of everything that happened – we swam, we ate, we drank, we chilled – we learned about other uses for tomato sauce. We spoke about what the cottage experience means to us – the chance to escape, the change of scenery, the opportunity to just relax – no worries, funny moments, good sleeps and tons of love.
There’s nothing better than hanging out with the people who love us and getting a chance to love them back. Sounds like the perfect plan for the month ahead – look for the joy!
IN THE WORKS!
Other things to look forward to in the next few weeks, I’ll be returning to CHCH Hamilton and CTV Kitchener on September 19 and will be on ROGERS TV Ottawa on the 25th – check your local listings and tune in. We also have amazing recipes in the works, as always. Of special note, the last week in September we’ll be posting ideas for Thanksgiving, including a video on how to make our perfect SALT-BRINED ROASTED TURKEY! Stay tuned.
Final thoughts – let’s remember to be kind to one and other over the next few weeks. Kids are heading back to school, the summer’s winding down, and new schedules and routines are in the works. Let’s all promise to be patient, maintain our cool and keep smiling!
Here’s to a sweet September!
P.S.: Don’t forget to share the news with your friends and flip us an email with story ideas and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also look for us on one or more of your favourite social media platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.