Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Everything's Peachy in Texas

JUNE, 2016…
     I was going to say, “Summer’s coming soon,” but it’s already here!  Where did May go?  Suddenly, the calendar is moving far too fast.  I have to say I am not a real big fan of summer.  I love to go swimming, but you can keep the heat!  Although, there are ways to enjoy those hot days and one of them is by cranking up the ice cream freezer. How many of you have fond memories of sitting and cranking that handle (the old-fashioned, fun way of ice-cream making) before the advent of the all-electric freezers? Anticipation was half the fun!  Of course, you needed more than a couple of freezers to make it a real party, because so many people had their personal favorite flavors.  What was yours? I am split between vanilla and peach. Never could get into Big Red or Oreo or any of those other fancy ones.
     My giveaway for the launch of His Country Bride is Everything’s Peachy in Texas.  Of course, that ties in with the location of my book, and the attempt of my heroine to make her own peach jelly.  It also brings back fun memories I have of summers in the Hill Country of Texas. One particular memory involves a couple of our fun trips over the Fourth of July, to the area around Fredericksburg and Medina, Texas. My sister-in-law and brother-in-law and my husband and myself, would get a cabin in the hills and then plan day trips to do fun things like arts and craft shows, great food stops in out of the way cafes, etc.
     Well, one of us, who shall remain nameless (ok…it was me) decided it would be lots of fun to stop at an orchard and pick our own peaches for some homemade peach ice cream that evening back at the cabin. We stopped at this great place with acres of trees. They also had other items you could pick too….apples, figs, watermelons, and LOTS of peaches. So off we four go, armed with our empty baskets.  We felt so empowered “getting back to the earth”, rolling up our sleeves, gathering our food the old-fashioned way and not from the produce section of the local grocery.
     I picked with one eye open for anything slithery on the ground, as is my habit. Since spending long summers on a farm in west Texas, I learned that you can meet some not nice creatures in the rows of gardens…but that is a story for another blog. Anyway, we were all enjoying ourselves and gathering our treasures. The sun got to be a little warm and so about an hour or less later, we headed in with our baskets to be weighed. That’s when we noticed one small problem… the size of the vehicle’s trunk might be an issue. The next problem…overabundance. We ended up with several baskets and bags of food…for just four people and three days of meals. To say we got a tad bit carried away in our exuberance of our “farm experience” would be understating the problem.
We ate apples, peaches, figs, watermelons until we didn’t want to look at them again for another year.  We made a small dent in our quantity. That is the year; my sister-in-law Janet became a supreme “canner” of the highest order. Our treasures were turned into lovely glass jars and given to MANY deserving friends and family members!  And they are still coming….LOL
     Such are the memories of summer… more to be shared later!  Enjoy the peaches and homemade ice cream wherever you are,

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