A Love Letter to the Summer of 2022

It feels like the last two years so many of us have been fighting unseen fights, lost in a world that feels as though it was coming to an end proverbially time and time again. And yes, while that journey continues, in some way today as I walked in the sunshine, I think it felt like the pressure was eased ever so slightly. Maybe it’s the beginning of something new here in Ottawa for me. Maybe it’s that Julio is finally here with me. Maybe it’s the fact that I feel more connected to Catherine and our true love than I have in some time. So in hopes of holding on to that hope for just a little longer, and inspiring some of your own while you read it, I thought I would share a love letter of sorts to the upcoming summer. They tell me that if you manifest something with enough good intention, anything is possible. So let’s say this is going to be our best summer yet, full of laughter, love and memories to balance out the battles.

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I’m not one to put the entire power of my mood, mental state and happiness into a season, but there is a certain heft that the past two years has imparted on me, and many of us, that I am ready to learn from and put down.

This summer I want to explore with Julio and discover what it means to live in a new city together. I want to plant and grow flowers and vegetables in our home to nourish my body and my soul. I want to laugh until my stomach hurts with friends on our rooftop terrace. I want to eat and drink and enjoy my body in ways that haven’t been allowed while I tried to hate it into changing and being what it once was.

Life can be beautiful, even amid the chaos I have and will probably always have. I am learning to draw boundaries and distance myself from people who feed off my energy in ways that aren’t healthy for me. So in hopes of this summer being my happiest and most fulfilled to date, I want to tell you about a Canadian brand that stole a piece of my heart earlier this year. Something I will keep in our home to be a part of the above intentions each and every day, because I deserve things and moments that make me happy – and so do you!

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Having been introduced to Valley of Mother of God earlier this year with Julio and the romance of the brand spoke to me on a deeper level than I thought it would. And that’s saying a lot because before the beginning of this year I did not consider myself a gin person at all – in hindsight I think I was holding on to preconceptions and experiences as a young man without opening my mind to all the possibilities.

“Borne from the aromas and flavours of the wild Canadian landscape, award-winning Valley of Mother of God gins are elegantly balanced and deliciously complex. To help craft our recipes into world-class spirits, we sought the guidance of a Master Distiller from London, England, whose family have been ginsmiths since 1680. With their Canadian provenance and British heritage, our Dry Gin and Maplewood Smoked Gin are unique expressions of both character and refinement, worthy of notable cocktails.”

I guess it’s no shock that I set intentions for the upcoming months with food and drink in mind. That’s a love language of mine at the end of the day – to create and share moments with those I care about. And what better way than with a delicious cocktail in hand, some music and good people. For so long I felt separated and now I finally find myself coming back to who I am and what I love. There’s nothing more beautiful of a feeling and nothing I wish more for you as you read this post.

For recipes I have loved creating with #GodsGin I encourage you to click here.

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Make sure to share your intentions and cocktail creations to inspire others – follow @valleyofmotherofgod on Instagram, @godsgin on Twitter and by ‘Liking’ / ‘Following’ their Facebook page. Don’t forget to click below to share this blog post with your friends and family. Let’s all inspire brighter days, better moments and beautiful memories. We deserve it.

This post is not intended to be seen by persons under the legal alcohol drinking age or in countries with restrictions on advertising on alcoholic beverages. Please remember to enjoy responsibly and never drink and drive. 

Photos: Daniel Reyes Cocka & All Social Media accounts listed above

Daniel Reyes Cocka xo

Mobile photos were taken with my Mobile Device of choice on the Rogers network.

*Please note that this may be a sponsored post and promotional consideration may have been offered by participating brands – our disclosure can be found at all times by clicking here.