Summer Updates

Hello, dear blog followers. It has been a while; I am sorry. Sometimes I forget that my life is still interesting - at least, I think - even though I am not traveling and living abroad. Thus I forget to clue you in on how it is going.

It is hard to believe that we are halfway through the summer. June has come and gone, we're in the middle of July, and August will soon be upon us. Then there will be September, and I will be on my way to England. But that is for then. This is now.

I love summer in spite of this heat - well over 90F/32C most days. I will admit I had forgotten how intense Southern summers could be. I'm extremely grateful to be reminded of how thankful I am for air conditioners (an undiscovered treasure in most of France)!

To cope with the heat, I've been doing a lot of indoor activities this summer. Lots of preparing for England. {Did I mention that I was awarded that full tuition scholarship? Yay!} The visa process is, as it was before, slightly intimidating. But I'm pressing onward. The visa isn't the only preparation I've made. There were plane tickets to be bought, including the ones that will bring me home for Christmas! I am very excited about those. I've also done some smaller shopping trips. After all, England has colder winters than South Carolina!

I've also enjoyed living in the countryside again. My mom has a lovely little garden from which she has harvested tomatoes, bell pepper and squash. We've also had several community members give us fresh vegetables and fruit. That means lots of canning and freezing.

Peaches, peaches, everywhere
So far we've made sweet cucumber pickles, sweet squash pickles (my favorite pickle!), sweet pickle relish, peach jam, frozen peach slices, spaghetti sauce, stewed tomatoes ... whew. That is a lot. And we're making more. It's hard work, but I love looking at all those cans and knowing that I made it.

I've been on a few adventures this summer, too. Before it got too hot, my younger sister and a friend headed off to the mountains to go camping. My last blog had a snippet about that. And a picture one of the hikes we took. Six and a half miles of mountain trails in two days. But it was a blast!

I also joined my younger sister and some of her friends on the Isle of Palms for the Fourth of July. We had a lovely little indoor 'cookout' with lots of traditional Fourth of July foods: burgers, potato salad, and watermelon to name a few. I think my favorite part of the night was the fireworks! I missed Fourth of July fireworks last year.

Fireworks to celebrate freedom!
That is all from this tiny corner of the world for now. I will try to be more faithful over the next few months as I lead up to my next adventure (only 60 days, by the way)!

What have you been up to this summer?


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