I still can’t believe we’re halfway through the summer! July came and went in the blink of an eye, and even though the entire month was spent in Canada, it was still a really busy one. Here’s a quick look at what I got up to this month:
World Cup Madness
Most of my afternoons in July revolved around the FIFA World Cup. This event only comes around once every 4 years, so I was in front of the TV yelling at the refs anytime there was a match on. I cheered for Argentina all the way, and then those Germans swept in and took the gold. Aghhh, it was a well deserved win, but Deutschland, what are you doing to me?!
On Saturday, July 12 Sam and I tied the knot in front of a small group of family and friends. We wanted a small, intimate ceremony so we actually kept it quite hush-hush and only told a few people! I’m almost 3 weeks in to being Mrs. Jeffery and so far so good! You can see some photos from the wedding here.
A Family Reunion
And within a few days of becoming Mrs. Jeffery, it was time to meet the Jeffery clan at a massive family reunion. Sam’s family gathers every few years for one big bash, and this one just so happened to take place soon after our wedding. It was a weekend of feasting, dancing and enjoying the outdoors. I must have met over 100 people – some who flew in from as far as Alberta and Hawaii – and while I can’t remember everyone’s names it was nice to be welcomed to this new family.
A Road Trip out East
A few days after the wedding, Sam and I started the journey out to Canada’s East Coast to spend some time with his family. We turned the 14 hour drive into a fun road trip with stops in:
Kingston – You wouldn’t guess by its size, but this was once the former capital of Canada!
Wolfe Island – Wolfe Island is a short ferry ride away from Kingston, and it’s a really fun island to explore if you have a bike or a car. We kept stopping every few kilometres to photograph bales of hay, windmills, and farms.
Gananoque – Gananoque is a small little town that sits on the banks of the St. Lawrence River. It has a lot of great hiking trails, biking trails, and cottages, so it’s pretty popular in the summer months.
Quebec City – The most European city in all of Canada.
Fredericton – And last but not least, I have been spending the past few days enjoying Fredericton. I’ve gotten to experience the Highland Games, go biking along the Nashwaak Trail, and explore the city on foot. What I like about this city is that you’re never too far from nature.
My 27th Birthday
This month I turned 27! This was the 3rd birthday in a row that I’ve spent away from home (the last 2 were in Bangkok and Seoul), but Sam’s family helped make it a special day. We enjoyed a delicious home-cooked meal at his parents’ home and they prepared all my favourites including cheesecake for dessert.
Being a bookworm
Over the past few months I’ve made it a habit to read before bed, and that combined with the long road trip out East meant that I had plenty of time to devote to books. Some of my favourite reads from the month included:
A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson- I love Bryson’s books and this one had me laughing out loud. It got me thinking about what hikes I’d like to tackle, but those ideas were dashed just as quickly whenever I read about Bryson’s 15-kilometers-a-day hikes and how he had to sleep in torrential downpours…maybe just a trip to a cottage would be nice.
On Writing by Stephen King – Genius. Stephen King shares his personal story of humble beginnings, while teaching you things about writing. I’m still not sure I could pick up one of his horror novels, but I do want to try my hand at some of his other fiction works.
A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini – There was so much hardship in this novel and it literally moved me to tears, but it offered such a raw look at Afghanistan that I just couldn’t put it down.
Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer – This one is based on Krakauer’s real life experiences climbing Everest with disastrous results. You know from the start that it’s not going to end well for those on his team, but it still sucks you in.
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt – I’ve been working on this one for a while. I’m about 70% through the book and although it’s a bit wordy, I like that Tartt still has me guessing and I have no idea how things are going to turn out…
On the blog
I feel like I’m always playing catch up on the blog and not necessarily blogging in chronological order, but that’s how it goes. This month I’ve been covering the 3 week North American train trip that Sam and I took back in June. Here are a few of the Chicago and NYC reads:
The Chicago Highlights – some of my favourites places and experiences around the city.
Feeling Like a Pizza Expert in Chicago – it’s all about the deep-dish!
Trapped in a Room with a Zombie – quite literally. The things I do in the name of fun.
My Week in New York City – highlights from my week in the Big Apple and a video featuring 50 things to do.
Postcards from the Cloisters – because there’s a place in Manhattan that looks straight out of Europe.
And that’s a July wrap-up!
What have you been up to so far this summer?
Fill me in. 🙂
happy late birthday! I don’t remember if I told you before.
Also, I read On Writing years ago and don’t remember much except I liked it & I’m a huge King fan. A Thousand Splendid Suns was really good too… I still have yet to read anything Bill Bryson- I’ve got to get on that!
What!? You’ve been to Quebec? I live in Canada and I’ve never even been there 🙁
That sounds like a great road trip you took in Canada. I would love to do that one day. Also, I’d never heard of Stephen King’s On Writing. I think I might check that out! He is definitely a genius!!
A month full of activities, yeah! Happy belated Birthday and congrats now you are Mrs Jeffery.
July was quite a cool month for you! Marriage was a solid milestone indeed! Congratulations again! Have a blessed life ahead. 🙂
Thanks for the book recommendations! I just downloaded a couple of them after reading The Alchemist! And congratulations again to the both of you =)
Thanks for the rad book recommendations! I just downloaded a couple after finishing the Alchemist. And congrats again to the both of you!
Into Thin Air and A Walk in the Woods are two of my favourite books! Bryson and Krakauer are amazing. Is Sam’s family from Fredericton? It’s a cool little town, we couchsurfed there last summer and managed to time it when there was a Pow Wow on – I loved it!
Glad to hear you also enjoyed those books. I loved Krakauer’s writing style – I need to get my hand on some of this other works. And yes, Sam’s parents currently live in Fredericton, so we ended up spending a couple of weeks visiting with them. I didn’t get to see a Pow Wow though – that must’ve been a lot of fun!
We have a similar reading list! I’ve listened to the audiobook of Walk in the Woods (and also Bryson’s book about Australia) probably 4-5 times each — he reads them himself which makes them even more hilarious, if possible. And I think I am up to #300 on the library’s waiting list for The Goldfinch, sooo….looking good there.
sounds like a good month. I will have to check out some of these books
I haven’t read many of Bryson’s books but I remember reading A Walk in the Woods once, and I thought it was hilarious.
I love this post about your last few weeks Audrey! Huge congrats on your wedding and A Thousand Splendid Suns is without a doubt my favourite ever book – I remember reading it a few years ago on my travels and literally could not put it down even when we had to leave the hotel or were due to head out somewhere!!
July was a busy month for you 😀 Saw the wedding photos and it’s really lovely. Nice to start a new chapter in life 😀
I would like to get a copy of Stephen King’s On Writing too.
I am also overwhelmed with a number of backlogs I haven’t worked on. Two years worth of backlogs huhu T_T Maybe I should something similar to this one my personal blog to keep track on what I’ve done for the month. Have a fruitful August 😀