Why My June Was Wonderful

Hello and welcome to my blog! I’m glad you’re here. It’s week 26 in 2022 and I’m hosting Weekend Coffee Share linkup #76. Come on in for a coffee or tea, and let’s catch up.

July 1, 2022 is Canada’s 155th birthday and the start of a long weekend in Canada. It’s a good time for me to reflect on my 2022 focus and last month. Here’s my monthly update for June.

Travel

June 2022 was an extraordinary month as I traveled to Newfoundland and Labrador (abbreviated as NL). NL is the easternmost province of Canada, in the country’s Atlantic region. It was my first time visiting the province and my first air travel since the pandemic started.

Despite recent negative news about Toronto’s Pearson International airport delays and flight cancellations, I experienced excellent service at the airport and with Air Canada. Security lines were quick and my flights were on time.

Left: Red box marks Toronto. Right: Blue line marks my itinerary in NL.

I flew from Toronto to Deer Lake in NL (Flight distance = 1785 kilometers or 1110 miles). On my way home, I flew from St. John’s to Toronto (Flight distance = 2109 kilometers or 1311 miles). Newfoundland Daylight Time is 1 hour 30 minutes ahead of Toronto.

I had an AMAZING trip and experienced many wonders in NL in two weeks. Highlights include iceberg viewing, hiking in two magnificent national parks (Gros Morne and Terra Nova), whale watching, bird watching (bald eagles, puffins and other seabirds), enjoying delicious food and warm hospitality, visiting UNESCO World Heritage Sites, National Historic Sites, several coastal fishing villages, lighthouses, and St. John’s, North America’s oldest city.

This was one of the trips that was cancelled in 2020 when the pandemic started. I’m glad to complete it in June. As a result of my adventures in NL, I have a backlog of things to write and pictures to share.

Health

Last month, I continued my wellness routine to stay healthy. It’s a pleasure to go cycling and walking along the waterfront. I look forward to paddling around Toronto Islands.

Home

Family – This summer I’m assisting my family with two projects that involve out-of-town stays. The first project is in July in Hamilton, Ontario. I look forward to helping out.

Friends – I continued my Tour of Indie Cafés of 2022 and enjoyed meeting with my friends at two Dark Horse coffee shops (Queen Street East and Canary District locations) in downtown Toronto.

I preferred Dark Horse Café in the Canary District. This café is below a George Brown College residence so they have plenty of loyal customers (students). Its location is close to Corktown Common, with interesting public art and a beautiful green space for a stroll before or after coffee.

Community – I supported my international community by volunteering at two events:

Toronto Corporate Run: Before the race started, we had a heavy downpour. It cleared up in time for the race and turned into a pleasant evening with a lovely sunset. I got a photo of two police officers on horseback as they patrolled the area. The event successfully raised funds to support the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health and the Canada-Ukraine Foundation to help Ukraine in their struggle.

Toronto Biennial of Art: The weather was beautiful on the day of the one-of-a-kind “A Tribute to Toronto” smoke sculpture by American pyrotechnic artist Judy Chicago. A five-tiered scaffold on a barge was put in place at Sugar Beach with the help of the red Radium Yellowknife tugboat. The artist and her team directed from shore.

The show started with a row of flares igniting along the bottom tier of the scaffold. Then the environmentally friendly and non-toxic smoke started billowing from the stage in sequence of purple, blue, green, yellow, and white. It ended with volleys of fireworks and applause from hundreds of attendees.

Leisure

Reading – I read eight books. Here’s the list by author’s last name:

  1. Birds of California by Katie Cotugno
  2. The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave
  3. The Day The World Came To Town: 9/11 in Gander, Newfoundland by Jim DeFede
  4. Book Lovers by Emily Henry
  5. The Holiday Swap by Maggie Knox
  6. Wait For It by Jenn McKinlay
  7. Around the World (Dora the Explorer) by Suzanne D. Nimm
  8. Dora’s World Adventure by Suzanne D. Nimm

Writing – I wrote four blog posts with lots of pictures in each:

  1. 5 Easy Walks To Cool Off
  2. Corktown Common and Don River (and gorgeous peonies)
  3. 5 Colourful Murals To See
  4. Toronto Music Garden in Spring

Overall

June has been adventurous, extraordinary and fun. I’m grateful for the opportunity to travel to Newfoundland and Labrador and all the good things that happened in June.

Happy July!

Shared with #TheChangingSeasons.

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87 thoughts on “Why My June Was Wonderful

  1. Alison July 1, 2022 / 8:16 am

    The Tribute to Toronto sounds fantastic Natalie, I love fireworks
    That sure is a lot of books you read
    I usually manage two or three
    Hope your July is exciting as your June 🙂

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 11:04 am

      Alison, It was a successful Tribute to Toronto event. We’ll have fireworks tonight for Canada Day celebration. I read daily, so far this year my average is seven books per month. It’s actually less than what I read in 2020. Hope you have a great weekend and a wonderful July.

      Like

      • Alison July 1, 2022 / 9:24 pm

        That sounds like another wonderful event
        Wow you must read all day! Plus blogging as well

        Like

        • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 9:51 pm

          I usually read in the evening and write one blog post per week.

          Like

          • Alison July 1, 2022 / 9:54 pm

            You must be a super quick reader

            Like

            • Natalie July 2, 2022 / 9:30 am

              I read daily so that may improve my speed to above average but it’s not super quick yet 🙂

              Like

  2. Denyse Whelan Blogs July 1, 2022 / 8:18 am

    Such a JOYfilled post Natalie. How wonderful it was to catch up on all of that exciting and great news. To go somewhere on a plane again, after all this time, and see such places of interest. Your adventure sounded so good. And not only that, so much happening in June as your city opens up and there is JOY there too. I admit, it’s feeling like that more here in Australia too but being winter, and there are days ahead forecasting very heavy rain, the school holidays won’t be much fun for families here on the east coast of Australia. However, it was awesome feeling the vibrancy and happiness, as well as your devotion to self care, and helping others…Sending all good wishes for your country’s special celebration. Denyse

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 11:11 am

      Denyse, It was good to resume travel again. Newfoundland and Labrador has beautiful landscape and seascape. The pace of life usually picks up in the summer here as people enjoy the warm weather and get things done while the weather cooperates. Toronto has resumed many international and local events so the city definitely feels more vibrant and closer to pre-pandemic level. Thank you for your good wishes and for linking up. I’ll be celebrating Canada’s 155th birthday today with gratitude.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. leannelc July 1, 2022 / 9:12 am

    Hi Natalie – your June was wonderful and mine was fabulous – you can’t ask for more than that can you? Glad your flight and trip went so well – such a lovely way to get back into travelling again after all the covid restrictions. Great to see you volunteering some more and enjoying that too. Thanks for the link party 🙂

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 11:14 am

      Hi Leanne, Thank you for linking up. I’m glad we both had a fabulous and wonderful June. It felt good to resume travel and to support events that Toronto is bringing back. Hope you have a great weekend and a fabulous July.

      Like

  4. rawsonjl July 1, 2022 / 9:51 am

    So glad to hear you had a good trip and your flights went well! We’re nervous about flying here in the states too as it can be quite unreliable as can the car rentals to go along with it.

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 11:16 am

      Joanne, I hope your family trip goes smoothly and you have a wonderful time. Thank you for stopping by.

      Like

  5. Anne Fraser @theplatinumline.blog July 1, 2022 / 10:25 am

    It looks as though you have been very busy. We were in Canada for the 150th birthday. A lot has happened since then!

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 11:20 am

      Anne, The pace of life tends to pick up in the summer here while the warm weather lasts. I agree that a lot has happened in Canada and the world since 2017. Have a great weekend and wonderful July!

      Like

  6. Maria July 1, 2022 / 12:10 pm

    Your trip sounds marvellous. I hope you share more about it in future posts. I’m especially interested in learning more about the UNESCO World Heritage site you visited.
    June sounds like another great month in your books. Thank you for the coffee.

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 1:45 pm

      Maria, I’ll definitely share more about the three UNESCO World Heritage Sites that I visited. June was wonderful. Thank you for stopping by. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Maria July 2, 2022 / 2:45 am

        Thank you! I always find UNESCO World Heritage Sites very interesting. I have never seen one that I have not been mesmerised by. Have a great rest of your weekend!

        Like

        • Natalie July 2, 2022 / 8:58 am

          The three UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Newfoundland and Labrador blew my mind. Have a great week ahead!

          Like

  7. Suzanne@PictureRetirement July 1, 2022 / 12:34 pm

    Natalie, that first flight after Covid does feel strange, but it is also nice to get it out of the way so you know what to expect next time. Your June was certainly filled with all the things that make life joyful. Thanks for sharing and for hosting. I will link up on Sunday.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 1:48 pm

      Suzanne, I think we both fill our days with all the things that make life joyful, and with balance in mind. It felt good to travel far and wide again. I look forward to your post on Sunday. Have a great weekend and happy July 4th to you!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Dan Antion July 1, 2022 / 2:15 pm

    What a great month, Natalie. I love that you’re keeping up your health routine and excited to see you traveling again.

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 2:32 pm

      Dan, It was wonderful to resume travel. Everything came together for this trip and I had an amazing time in Newfoundland and Labrador. I try to keep up my health routine as good health enables me to enjoy my leisure pursuits. I hope your book promotion is going well. Have a great weekend and happy July 4th to you!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Liesbet @ Roaming About July 1, 2022 / 2:20 pm

    I’m slightly envious of your travels and explorations in NL. That looks like a great itinerary. I hope the weather was pleasant. I’m amazed (as always) you managed to keep reading this many books, even while traveling for two weeks and participating in all the other events. Wonderful recap of your incredible June, Natalie!

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 2:44 pm

      Liesbet, The weather was beautiful and sunny for most of my time in Newfoundland and Labrador. The last two days before I left, it was a combo of rain, drizzle and fog. However, even that weather was on point for the places that I visited on the Avalon peninsula. On my departure date, it was sunny again, in time for a good flight home. I enjoy reading and e-books are good travel companions, especially when I wait to board my flight at an airport. I hope you’re enjoying the weekend and happy July 4th to you!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Thistles and Kiwis July 1, 2022 / 3:46 pm

    What a great month! Your trip sounds amazing – I would love to go to that part of Canada, though Nova Scotia is on my bucket list. One day! Thanks again for helping to start my Saturday morning with a smile!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 4:38 pm

      You’re welcome! I’m pleased to start your Saturday with a smile. I hope you get to visit Nova Scotia. it’s also a beautiful province.

      Like

  11. Susanne July 1, 2022 / 6:19 pm

    I’m so happy for you that you got on this trip, and that your flight experience was good. All the places you mention from your trip sound fantastic and I hope you have more photos to share eventually! I mention St Johns in an Irish song that I sing now and then.I didn’t know it was North America’s oldest city!

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 6:41 pm

      Susanne, I was fortunate to have an amazing first trip since the pandemic started. I had an excellent experience at the airports, both in Toronto and in St. John’s. I commented to my friends that it was even better than before the pandemic. St. John’s is rich in history and the music scene is incredible. Nature, landscape and seascape are amazing there. I’ll start sharing my trip stories and photos next week. There will be more than one post 🙂

      Like

  12. Janis @ RetirementallyChallenged.com July 1, 2022 / 6:21 pm

    June was definitely a fabulous month for you! The trip to NF looks great (and I’m anxious to read more about it) and time spent with family and friends is always fulfilling. Happy Canada Day!

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 6:45 pm

      Janis, It was wonderful to resume travel and explore an amazing province. I’ll start sharing my trip stories and photos next week. There will be more than one post 🙂 I’m celebrating Canada Day today. I hope you have a great weekend and happy July 4th to you!

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Lydia C. Lee July 1, 2022 / 7:10 pm

    I ad to check the Dora’s World Adventure was the one I thought it was – you made me laugh! I learned some Russian from that when the kids were little, that I like to throw around when traveling still (well, perhaps not in these covid years but prior….)
    The Bienal must haveben great – there’s a whole mom,ent of Pyrotechnic artists. I saw some french ones at Womad a few years ago 0 fantastic stuff!

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 7:53 pm

      I was curious about the Dora the Explorer series because the title is similar to my blog name and I thought I could find the books in Spanish to give me more practice. The Biennial was great with 72 days of free art. The Judy Chicago event I volunteered in was fab.

      Like

  14. Retirement Reflections July 1, 2022 / 9:05 pm

    Hi, Natalie – You are a true inspiration of living life to the fullest (and with a consistently positive attitude). Thank you for this inspiring post!

    Like

    • Natalie July 1, 2022 / 9:18 pm

      Hi Donna, Thank you for your compliment. I think the same about you. I hope your Mom and you are both well. Have a great Canada Day weekend!

      Like

  15. Antoinette Truglio Martin July 2, 2022 / 7:55 am

    I am amazed how you can pack so.much in 30 days. Are you sure there aren’t two or three of you? LOL.

    Like

    • Natalie July 2, 2022 / 9:01 am

      LOL…I thought my pace was just right for me.

      Like

  16. trentpmcd July 2, 2022 / 8:13 am

    Oh, wow, I’d love to visit Newfoundland and Labrador! I know a lot of people who have been to Nova Scotia, but nobody who made the longer journey up the coast to NL. Are they even out of winter in June? lol. I love the rugged coast. Glad you had a good June with the travels and with all the going-ons in Toronto. Hope you have a great long weekend (long for us as well – our nation’s birthdays bookend the weekend) and a wonderful week ahead!

    Like

    • Natalie July 2, 2022 / 9:09 am

      Newfoundland’s rugged beauty is incredible and Labrador is next level. I was lucky to have beautiful, sunny weather for most of my trip. They’re out of winter, although I noticed that flowers that bloomed in May in Toronto just started blooming in June there. Have a great weekend and happy July 4th!

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Gary A Wilson July 2, 2022 / 3:03 pm

    Excellent news and foreshadowing Natalie. Travel is reopening!
    We’re taking our first big road trip in a few weeks for very different reasons, but a road trip is a road trip and I’m looking forward to it.
    I’m also looking forward to reading more about your trip.

    Like

    • Natalie July 2, 2022 / 4:22 pm

      Gary, Your road trip sounds great. I’ll start sharing my trip stories and photos next week. Have an enjoyable weekend and happy July 4th!

      Like

  18. Astrid July 2, 2022 / 3:16 pm

    Your trip to NL sounds wonderful! I am also happy you got so much reading done this past month. Hope your July is as amazing as your June was.

    Like

    • Natalie July 2, 2022 / 4:24 pm

      Thank you, Astrid, for your comment. The last two books on my list were children’s books so they were quick and easy reads. I hope you have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Astrid July 3, 2022 / 2:17 am

        Yes, I know, but still, you getting those other six books read while also being on holiday doing all those exciting things in NL, amazes me. I am lucky if I read two books a month, honestly.

        Like

        • Natalie July 3, 2022 / 9:02 am

          I read daily, mostly in the evening. I think this habit improves my reading speed.

          Liked by 1 person

  19. csuhpat1 July 2, 2022 / 9:40 pm

    Looks like that you had an amazing June. Hope your Canada Day was good. Thanks for hosting and I hope that you have a wonderful week.

    Like

    • Natalie July 2, 2022 / 10:53 pm

      Thank you, Patrick, for linking up. Have a great weekend and happy July 4th.

      Like

  20. Janet Alcorn July 3, 2022 / 11:17 am

    I can’t wait to see the pictures from your trip! I’d love to explore that part of Canada someday.

    How was The Day the World Came to Town? It’s been on my reading list for awhile.

    Glad you had such a great month! I hope July is even better.

    Like

    • Natalie July 3, 2022 / 12:29 pm

      I’ve got hundreds of pictures from my trip and selected some for my upcoming posts on NL. There will be more than one post 🙂

      The Day The World Came to Town is an easy and heart-warming read. I’m glad the author documented how Gander accommodated such a sudden and huge landing of so many planes and people, and some of the human interactions on and after 9/11. I visited Gander and the North Atlantic Aviation Museum there. It has a big binder full of letters from people around the world who wrote to thank the people in Gander. I’m glad I read the book and visited Gander.

      Have a great weekend and happy July 4th!

      Like

  21. Marsha July 3, 2022 / 12:35 pm

    Your June does sound wonderful, Natalie. You always inspire me both in my blog writing, and with many of your experiences. I think, “That sounds like fun. I could do something like that here.” Thanks for creating this wonderful challenge.

    Like

    • Natalie July 3, 2022 / 2:26 pm

      Marsha, I’m flattered to have inspired you. The more I explore places, the more I love life and our planet. Thank you for your sweet compliment. I truly appreciate it. Have a great weekend and happy 4th of July!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Marsha July 4, 2022 / 12:24 am

        Our weekend is about over now. I hope you have a wonderful week, my friend. New adventures are on their way. 🙂

        Like

        • Natalie July 4, 2022 / 8:00 am

          Yes, new adventures await. Have a wonderful week Marsha, and tell me all about it this upcoming weekend 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  22. Diana July 3, 2022 / 9:46 pm

    Hi Natalie,
    What a wonderful trip and your June sounds wonderful! I always love how you pause and reflect on your blog. I always admire all you accomplish and all that you are able to see and appreciate as our world sure is full of so much wonder and awe! I always love your positivity as your blog is so inspiring. I have joined in this weekend as well and I want to thank you for hosting the wonderful #weekendcoffeeshare! Have a wonderful week ahead! ❤

    Like

    • Natalie July 4, 2022 / 7:55 am

      Hi Diana, Thank you for your kind words. I agree our world is full of so much wonder and awe. The more I explore, the more I love life and our planet. I hope you had an enjoyable weekend. Happy 4th of July and have a wonderful week!

      Liked by 1 person

  23. Writing Sparkle July 3, 2022 / 10:09 pm

    I haven’t visited NL yet or Nova Scotia. We are hoping to check Nova Scotia off the bucket list this summer, but we don’t have the holiday time to visit NL too. Another year. Thanks Natalie. Have a great week.

    Like

    • Natalie July 4, 2022 / 7:58 am

      I hope you get to visit Nova Scotia. It’s a beautiful province. Have a wonderful week!

      Like

  24. Kirstin July 4, 2022 / 10:50 am

    Sounds like a fabulous June. Your trip sounds amazing. I’d love to see that area of Canada…maybe someday.

    Like

    • Natalie July 4, 2022 / 12:00 pm

      Kirstin, I love the landscape and seascape in Atlantic Canada. Have a wonderful week!

      Like

  25. Erica/Erika July 5, 2022 / 11:02 am

    Hi Natalie, Exceptionally gorgeous photos sharing some of what makes Canada beautiful! 🇨🇦 Great to hear you had a wonderful experience travelling to NL and Labrador. I have been to NL, not Labrador. I always appreciate a map along with a post to get a sense of distance and place. I look forward to reading and seeing more of your adventures. 😀 I enjoy all of your photos, and a great capture of the police officers on horseback under the sign. Thank you for sharing your amazing June. As always, your posts are inspirational, exceptionally beautiful and a delight to read, Natalie! ❤️

    Like

    • Natalie July 5, 2022 / 11:33 am

      Hi Erica/ Erika, It’s so great to hear from you. I hope you’ve been keeping well and enjoying summer. I love Newfoundland’s rugged coast and Labrador is next level with its natural beauty. I’ll start sharing more of my adventures in NL on Friday. There will be a few posts 🙂 Thank you for stopping by and encouraging me with your kind words. Have a wonderful July!

      Liked by 1 person

  26. Min Write of the Middle July 6, 2022 / 8:23 pm

    Hi Natalie, how wonderful to travel again! I look forward to hearing more about your adventures in Newfoundland and Labrador. We have a Labrador Beach at the Gold Coast just south of Brisbane. I see you’re still managing to read a heap of books each month which has always impressed me! I finished a book I’d been reading for nearly a year and read two others this month so that is improvement for me! I hope your July is just as fun and adventurous as your June has been! xo

    Like

    • Natalie July 6, 2022 / 9:01 pm

      Hi Min, It was great to resume travel. I’ll share more about my trip starting this Friday. There will be a few posts. I don’t watch TV and enjoy reading so that’s how I finish several books each month. It’s more about leisure and enjoyment than quantity. I hope you have a wonderful July. xo

      Like

  27. Julie July 6, 2022 / 9:17 pm

    I like how you are touring Indie cafes. I am always in pursuit of them too and then I find something I like and become a regular for several months at a time.

    Like

    • Natalie July 7, 2022 / 8:59 am

      I’m glad to hear you also like touring indie cafes. I see them as part of the social fabric of a city. I usually have coffee at home but also want to support small businesses after a long lockdown. Touring the indie cafes has been a good decision so far.

      Like

  28. Ju-Lyn July 7, 2022 / 10:34 pm

    What a fabulous & upbeat June you’ve had, Natalie! So happy to read your recap and to see that you are enjoying time with friends, family and engaged with community again.

    I am so pleased you experienced smooth travel – this is something that can’t be taken for granted these days.

    Thank you for sharing your delight & joy with The Changing Seasons – hope that July is well on its way to being another fabulous month for you!

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2022 / 2:00 am

      Thank you Ju-Lyn. July is off to a good start so far, and more travel 🙂 Wishing you a wonderful July!

      Liked by 1 person

  29. navasolanature July 8, 2022 / 4:03 pm

    Glad you could have such a busy and varied time. A glorious June indeed!

    Like

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