My Country Farmhouse – The Grand Finale (23 weeks later)

And so my time off comes to an end.

Starting Friday August 21st I am heading back to work. For the first 10 weeks of Covid-19 I couldn’t wait to get back to work. Several weeks after that I was surprised by how much I was really enjoying all the time off and towards the end and now still, I cannot imagine going back to work. Like the tiniest feeling of dread…

I haven’t been posting at all lately and I apologize for that. I haven’t been doing much around the house. Besides picking tomatoes and zuchinnis out of the garden, the occasional mowing of the grass and watering the flower baskets, I haven’t done anything. I haven’t wanted to spend any money.

Once I get back to work and bring my savings account back up I will be focusing on the kitchen renovation and master bedroom renovation. Those are the only two remaining rooms in the house to complete. I will also be putting an emergency fund aside in the off chance that Covid-19 makes a strong second appearance and everything starts to shut down once again.

I am still waiting on the really neat parts I’ve ordered to complete the kitchen Island. I am hoping to have that blog complete in the next couple of weeks. The delivery time was a challenge due to Covid and that is why it is taking so long.

I hope that everyone is heading back to work or already back. That you are all safe and well and remember to take breaks.  Our bodies will need time to adjust. I know I will, pretty sure I’m lazier now then I ever have been. And that’s Okay by me.

Until next time,



My Country Farmhouse – Road Trip: Bobcaygeon and Fenelon Falls, Ontario

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Google Maps – Bobcaygeon

This week has been dedicated to getting out of the house. ROAD TRIPS!!! Monday I took a road trip to Bobcaygeon, Ontario (where I pretty much grew up). And yes, this is the Bobcaygeon that the Tragically Hip sing about – it is an actual place!

Brief history:

“Bobcaygeon is a community on the Trent–Severn Waterway in the City of Kawartha Lakes, east-central Ontario, Canada.

Bobcaygeon was incorporated as a village in 1876, and became known as the “Hub of the Kawarthas”. Its recorded name bob-ca-je-wan-unkcomes either from the Mississauga Ojibway word baabaagwaajiwanaang “at the very shallow currents”, giishkaabikojiwanaang “at the cliffed cascades” or obaabikojiwanaang “at currented rocky narrows”, or from the French beau bocage “beautiful hedged farmland”. The first lock in the Trent-Severn Waterway was built in Bobcaygeon in 1833.

The town is situated on three islands, along with the main land.

Bobcaygeon’s chief industry is tourism, particularly related to recreational fishing. Bobcaygeon is a hub for the region, providing many of the services unavailable in the smaller neighbouring communities.” – Wikipedia

I left the house around 12:30pm after feeding the pups and made an afternoon out of the trip. I took the back country roads which were all scenic. Nothing but sun, water and forest to distract me while driving. It was nice to see so many people out biking and jogging taking full advantage of this incredible day.

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Google Maps – Petroglyphs Provoncial Park

On the way out I drove past the Petroglyphs Provincial Park which I will have to check out one day. Here is some information on the park:

“Petroglyphs Provincial Park is a historical-class provincial parksituated in Woodview, Ontario, Canada, northeast of Peterborough. It has the largest collection of ancient First Nations petroglyphs (rock carvings) in Ontario. The carvings were created in the pre-Columbian era and represents aspects of First Nations spirituality, including images of shamans, animals, reptiles, and, possibly, the Great Spirit itself.

The location of the site was kept hidden from non-First Nation people until 1954, when it was rediscovered accidentally by a prospector (Everett Davis)[1] of the Industrial Minerals of Canada. The immediate area of the petroglyphs has been designated a National Historic Site of Canada.[2]” – Wikipedia

I think spending a morning photographing the park would be a beautiful experience and an awesome blog to share with everyone in the future.

Continuing on my journey I drove through Buckhorn and Noggies Creek where the little bait & Tackle shop (Pirates Cove) is still up and running (30 years later). Located just next to the bridge on County Road 36. I remember buying penny candies (YES – 1 Cent candies) from this store after paddling over from Bellhaven Trailer Park.

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Driving over the bridge and around the bend on the left is Bellhaven Trailer Park which from the ages of 6 years old to 19 years old was where we spent our summers and weekends (Less so for me when I got a job at the age of 16). Dozens of kids running around playing manhunt, fishing, swimming from morning to dusk, bonfires, corn roasts, boating and tournaments was how we grew up. It literally was the best of times!

What I noticed driving through Bobcaygeon was how nothing really changed. A few new builds but businesses and homes all stayed the same. Shops still around 20 years later. I was driving down memory lane. The pet store where the cockatiel mocked the old man laughing – still there. Pick N Save – still there. Bigley Shoes – Still there. Absolutely nothing has changed. The only change was how crowded it was for a Monday afternoon.

After revisiting my childhood I continued on my journey to Fenelon Falls, Ontario (which I’d never been) to check out a little antique store called Gr8 Finds Market. This little shop is actually two shops combined with multiple vendors.. Small, quite traditional for an in town shop. Laid out well and priced ok. I ended buying a little step stool for my main bathroom so I can reach the higher shelves. It’s old and chippy but it is a well built piece.

I walked the Main Street and along the water which was nice since it was not overly hot. However, I did forget to take pictures… sorry! You will just have to go and check it out yourselves 😛

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Google Maps – Fenelon Falls

Once my time in Fenelon Falls was complete it was time to make my way home. I decided to take the longer way home which would allow me to stop in some smaller towns along the way. On my cork board in the city I have a large map of Ontario and I mark every town I visit (this started 10 years ago). I will be adding over 20 pins since Covid-19 struck. Day trips are the only thing keeping me sane right now. I will take a picture of the map and add it for everyone to see once I head back to Toronto for work (still no date yet).

Here is a list of the towns I stopped in on the way back to Havelock: Woodview, Fowlers Corner, Cavan, Bethany, Keene and Cameron. They were all equally nice with century homes and shops lining the main streets. My trip came to an end around 5:15pm. Home sweet home just in time for dinner. Another fun successful afternoon spent touring the sites and getting to know Ontario. Our province is so big and there is so much land and water to enjoy. The few little pins I add to my board will barely cover the map. I still have SO much more to see.

Get out and experience what our great province has to offer while you have the time.

Stay safe!


My Country Farmhouse – Day Trip: Tweed, Marlbank, Thomasburg, Madoc

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Today I decided to pick somewhere new on my map and head out on a nice little road trip. Snacks, bug spray, change of clothing (you never know) and water and I was set. Since Day Trip #1 to Perth ended with a quick stop in Tweed I decided to head back out that way to explore. I also drove to Marlbank and Thomasburg, Ontario to check out the sights in those little municipalities.

If you love country roads, hills, dips, valleys and blind curves this is the trip for you. The sights were absolutely breathtaking in every direction. I started from my house in Havelock headed East to Marmora where I turned (right) South onto the 14 which takes you into Springbrook. From there I made a Left turn (East) towards highway 62 where I turned right. From the 62 I immediately took a left turn (East) onto Crookston Road which takes you straight into Tweed.

I decided not to tour Tweed straight away rather I turned right onto County Road 13 which leads you past Stoco Lake. Stoco Lake is beautiful. Lined with homes and cottages and surrounded by nothing but nature.

Continuing on Country Road 13 (aka Marlbank Road) the landscape is mainly tree lined roads, farm fields and old farmhouses.

As you come into Marlbank you have the option of turning left or right… I went right. As I sat at that intersection to my left was an incredible century old building called the Marlbank Phoenix Tavern.

As I turned right I realized there was another right coming up that I thought might be a nice drive… and was I right. I was heading West again on Country Road 26. This road had many more hills and turns. As I came around one of the turns there was the most beautiful lake I’ve ever seen.  Dry Lake has the most crystal blue water I’ve ever laid eyes on in Ontario.  This little lake is off the beaten path so only locals or people who stumble upon it (like myself) will find it. There were about 8 cars on the side of the road and all of the passengers were taking full advantage of the warm clean water. It was so beautiful I too had to stop and take it in. (Pictures do NOT do it justice)

Continuing my drive west on the 26 I would soon find myself in Thomasburg, Ontario. Honestly, not much to see in this little municipality of tweed. But there were some nice homes.

Now heading North on ON-37 towards Tweed to take in the sights there. As you make your way into Tweed it is apparent that this town has some excellent history. There are many gorgeous brick victorian homes lining the main street. Each with well preserved detail.

There are two churches that I found – St. Andrews Presbyterian built in the 1890s with red brick and St. Carthagh’s Parish Roman Catholic Church Built in 1871, Catholic school and Manse all made from stone. I have to say I did not expect to see a Roman Catholic Church as big as this in a smaller town. It definitely stood out as I was driving up Hungerford Road.

Next to St. Andrews is North Americas smallest Jailhouse – Literally. Here are some of the facts:

“Designed by R.F Houston, a local who was the founder of the Tweed Lumber Company in 1893, the jail was built in 1898 and opened in 1900. The jail was built for $350.00 and R.F Houston was paid $10.00 for his contributions. This jail was to replace the original one that was located in the Municipality building in the basement after it flooded. The jail measures only 4.8 meters wide by 6 meters deep and originally held 3 cells and a lobby area.

The jail was operated for 50 years eventually closing due to a lack of crime in the town. Most prisoners or “vagrants” as described in documents from the jail were in jail for minor offences. Constables were paid 20 cents to watch over the “vagrants” and 30 cents if they had to feed them as well.

The most notorious prisoner to stay in the Tweed jailhouse was a man by the name of Gideon Butts. He was held there for one night in 1903, and then transferred to Nappanee. Butts murdered his wife because he was having delusions that she was a serpent.

After the jail closed the O.P.P renovated it taking away the three cells and making one large cells and a lobby area and used it for their offices for a time. Today the O.P.P maintain offices in the Municipality building and the jail is opened in the summer months as an information center.” –

Much of the Main Street (ON – 37) is lined with small businesses (restaurant, cafes, jewellers etc) and almost all of these buildings are century olds with tons of character which Tweed has done very well at preserving. There is definitely some history here.

Now that my tour was complete in Tweed it was time to head home. Heading West across Hungerford Road to Highway 62 where I would turn right (North) towards Madoc. A quick stop in the Foodland for groceries (as I do not shop weekends – overcrowding due to cottagers). And since Hidden Goldmine Bakery is right next door I had to grab something new to try – Some lunch: Grilled chicken sandwich with melted brie and blueberries with butternut squash soup and cream cheese cinnamon buns.  Yum!

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I had a lovely day driving around in the overcast and rain taking in the sights and visiting new places. Windows down, the smell of nature and rain made this day one of my favourite so far.

Until my next adventure – be kind, smile and have a little fun!



My Country Farmhouse – Strolling Perth, Ontario

Yesterday, June 30th my mom and I did a day trip to drop off a few packages 2 hours and 15 minutes West of Havelock to Stittsville, Ontario. Picnic lunch in hand (sandwiches, fruit, snacks, chocolate and water) we were ready to head out for the day. Stittsville  is a suburban area that is part of the city of Ottawa (an area I’ve never been too). We took Highway 7 East (I’ve only been as far as South Frontenac). The drive did not disappoint, there were beautiful old farmhouses and barns with incredible pastures, forests and beautiful views of water all around. We also drove through some very small towns that had seen better days – many had defunct old motels that may have one day been well cared for.

We planned our day out to maximize what we could do between 8:30am and 4pm – a full day (5 hours driving).

History of Stittsville, Ontario – Wikipedia

“The first settlers to the area were Irish soldiers, arriving in the 1820s. The town itself was born in the 1850s by Jackson Stitt, for whom the town is named; he was also the first postmaster in the area.[4]

By 1866, Stittsville was a post village with a population of 100, situated in the township of Goulbourn. The village contained one general store, one common school, with an average attendance of seventeen pupils. The Loyal Orange Lodge, No. 210, met in Orange Hall, on the first Thursday in each month. The citizens included John S Argue, general merchant and postmaster.[5]

The Great Carleton Fire of 1870 devastated the community, destroying nearly everything. Kemp’s Tavern on Hazeldean road, built in 1868, which now houses “Cabotto’s Restaurant” and a handful of other buildings were all that was left standing. This was an extremely large fire, encompassing over 250,000 acres (1,000 km2)[citation needed] from Ottawa to Smiths Falls to Carleton Place.[4]”

Driving through Stittsville I noticed that most of the properties were not that old. Maybe I was in the wrong area but we didn’t see any homes that had the architectural history or character found on our journey East. Many new subdivisions. Some of which were very cute. Once we dropped off the packages we made our way West towards Perth, Ontario. But before leaving Stittsville we stopped at a little pop up booth for some fresh picked Ontario Strawberries – YUM!

History of Perth, Ontario – Wikipedia

“The town was established as a military settlement in 1816, shortly after the War of 1812. The settlement of Lanark County began in 1815. In that year “the Settlement forming on the Rideau River” as it was officially referred to (and which soon became known as “Perth Military Settlement”) began to function under Military direction. The settlement was named Perth in honour of acting Governor-General Sir Gordon Drummond, whose ancestral home was Perthshire.

Several townships were surveyed to facilitate the location of farms for military and other settlers; and the site of the future Town of Perth, which had been chosen as the headquarters of the Military Establishment was surveyed in 1816.[3]

Many of the first settlers were military veterans on half pay, while others were military veterans from France, Germany, Poland, Italy, Scotland or Ireland who were offered land in return for their service. The Rev. William Bell, who arrived in June 1817, noted in his diaries that the settlement was more European than the Scottish settlement described to him. The first Scottish settlers came in 1816.[3] Many of the Scottish immigrants were stonemasons; their work can be seen in many area buildings and in the locks of the Rideau Canal.

The military regime lasted until 1824, when settlers were granted municipal rights, i.e., ‘the right of self-government’.[3] For many years Perth was the military, judicial, political and social capital, not only of the County of Lanark, but of the whole of the Ottawa Valley, north and west, until owing to the construction of the Rideau Canal, and the development of the lumber industry further north and west along the Ottawa, it finally was eclipsed by the town called “Bytown”—the present City of Ottawa, the Capital of the Dominion. But for many years the people of the town of Bytown, while it was still ‘Bytown’ had to come to Perth for their law and justice, for the law courts of the whole great district were located there.[3]

The first secretary/stores-keeper (and eventually postmaster and superintendent) of the settlement was Daniel Daverne, brought up from the Quarter Masters General Department in Kingston, Ontario, to assume these positions.

Perth is home to a pioneer burial ground, St. Paul’s United Church Cemetery, formerly The Old Methodist Burying Ground. This cemetery is at the south-east end of the Last Duel Park on Robinson Street.[4] The Craig Street Cemetery, sometimes referred to as the “Old Burying Grounds” also contains many historic graves and saw use from 1820–1873.

The town’s motto is “Pro Rege, Lege et Grege” (“For the King, the Law and the People”), which is shared with the City of Perth in Scotland[citation needed], and which was adopted in 1980 along with a new crest. The previous motto, “Festina lente sed certo” (“Make haste slowly but surely”), and original town crest appears on the uniforms of the Perth Citizen’s Band. Founded in 1850, this band continues a tradition of community music with numerous concerts each season.

Near the town is the home of world show jumping champion Ian Millar and Millar Brooke Farm where his great horse Big Ben (1976–1999) is buried. The town has erected a bronze life-sized statue of the horse and Ian Millar, in John A. Stewart Park, across from the Code’s Mill building.

This town was the site of the last fatal duel in Upper Canada. Robert Lyon, a law student, was killed on June 13, 1833, after fighting over a woman (Elizabeth Hughes) with a former friend, John Wilson. A local park is named “Last Duel Park” to commemorate the event.

Perth is also the site of the first installation of a telephone other than Bell’s experimental installations. A town dentist, Dr. J. F. Kennedy, a friend of Alexander Graham Bell, installed a direct telephone connection between his home and office. By 1887, there were 19 telephones in Perth, with a switchboard in Dr. Kennedy’s office.

In 1893, a 22,000 pound cheese known as the ‘Mammoth Cheese’ was produced in Perth to be exhibited in Chicago at the World’s Columbian Exposition to promote Canadian cheese around the world.[5][6][7][8]

In 2010, Perth held the historic “Kilt Run” in which 1,067 kilt-clad runners crossed the finish line. The idea to hold a kilt run in Perth was conceived of in October 2009 by Terry Stewart after the Mayor submitted a letter to the Perth Courier requesting town residents come up with an idea to help Perth, Scotland, celebrate its 800th anniversary. The Perth, Ontario, Kilt Run has since become an annual event. The 2016 Kilt Run attracted 5,000 runners as part of the town’s 200th anniversary.[9] The Kilt Run normally takes place at the end of June but the 10th anniversary of the Kilt Run is scheduled for August 17, 2019. It holds the Guinness World Record for the world’s largest kilted run with 3,670 runners<.[10]”

Some of you may already know I love to shop for Antiques.  I’ve only gone as far as Kingston, Ontario and so we would take this opportunity to do and see something new (masks in hand). Perth (Gore Street) has some of the most spectacular historical buildings I’ve seen in Ontario – all on one street.   The history is so well preserved – plaques with details on the buildings histories can be seen all around. If you are a history buff you should make this a stop on your list.

I got caught up looking at all the detail I almost forgot to take pictures. But I am thankful I did to share with you. Now Gore Street is not the only street to see this kind of history in the area, the homes on many of the side streets are equally as stunning.

We stopped in at Gore St. Antique Market (147 Gore Street) – I have to say it was nice doing something that is such a big part of my life that I haven’t been able to do in months – browse antiques. This is a decent size market – not the biggest and definitely not to smallest. Very well laid out (indoors 2 floors and a small outdoor section) pricing wasn’t to bad. And there were some really neat pieces. I however, came out empty handed.


We had only a few hours to spend in Perth before it was time to jump in the car and head West. We walked Gore street and stopped in to many of the little boutique shops that lined it. All very cute – all very expensive. We stopped in to The Perth Cheese Shop – because cheese! (64 Gore Street) which had a small display of fancy cheeses, kitchenware and charcuterie boards and supplies. The person working the shop was super friendly – Meredith (quite the chatter). We got a few small sample size cheeses to go for today (July 1st – Canada Day).

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After spending a good and fun 2.5 hours in Perth we had to start our journey home taking Highway 7 West. Since we were ahead of schedule we opted to take a mini detour to Tweed, Ontario another little town we had never seen. We only stopped for a brief second at the bank and then continued on our way home to Havelock. We took Crookston Road to Highway 62, Springbrook Road to County Road 14 which would take us to Marmora and jumped back on to Highway 7. I love taking random side roads – you never know what you’re going to see.

What a fun day! I love seeing the sights. And maybe – since gas doesn’t cost that much this is what I will do every so often with my days (since the renovations are on hold). Visit some where new – take in the sights, visit little mom and pop shops (offer my support), and take pictures to remember this time.

I hope you learned a little something new about Stittsville and Perth – I did. Wishing everyone the happiest CANADA DAY!

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My Country Farmhouse – Strolling Havelock, Ontario

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“The region’s colonial history began with an influx of settlers after Belmont and Methuen Township was surveyed in 1823. The community of Havelock was incorporated as an independent village in 1892. Havelock was named after the British general, Sir Henry Havelock.” – Wikipedia

Population 2020: 4,530

Single detached homes: 2015

Other home styles: 150

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Tourist attractions: Belmont Lake Brewery, the Gut Conservation area, Havelock Country Jamboree, Mathison Property, Petroglyphs Provincial Park

The Station Restaurant was originally built in 1929

“In 1991, it was designated a Heritage Railway Station. The building’s architectural character of low proportions, sloping roofs, quiet skylines and sheltering overhangs echo the CPR’s standard plan for stations of importance It held a significant place in Havelock community as the first divisional point east of Toronto on the Ontario-Quebec Railway, the trunk line of the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR).” –

Monday morning around 6am you can hear the horns of the trains rolling in to town. And this continues through the week. The railways are still active today.

Havelock only has one set of stop lights at the intersection of Highway 7 and County Road 30.  Did you know that Highway 7 is 540km long.

Century Home styles: (strolling the neighbourhood)

Cement block homes seem to be quite common in Havelock. On my journey today I must have seen between 15 and 20 of these homes. One and two levels, plain and painted and I would imagine some of these homes may have been sided over the years.

There are many wood and vinyl sided houses here and in an assortment of colours.

There are no shortages of massive brick homes in Havelock. I would say most are in good to perfect condition with some exceptions. Bay windows, large porches, beautiful gardens, deep properties. and several with old stone retaining walls.




Century homes for sale in Havelock (to view listing of these properties please visit Don’t forget you can still negotiate pricing in small towns and have conditions. You most definitely want an inspection when buying an older home.

MLS® Number: 262342 ($260,000)

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MLS® Number: 266596 ($230,000)

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MLS® Number: 236493 ($300,000)

Well I hope you enjoyed taking this tour of Havelock, Ontario. It truly is a quaint little town.