JOY42

Summer 2018 Highlights

LifeHannah DrakeComment

I'll always remember summer 2018 as being hot AF. My first summer in England, it was hot for about two weeks and then cooled down a bit and rained a lot more, closer to what you would imagine for the British summertime. Regardless of the heat and my incessant complaining about it, we managed to have a pretty great summer. And yes, as of today, I'm officially declaring summer 2018 over. Autumn starts tomorrow!* 

Today, I wanted to share a few highlights from the last three months that never managed to make it onto my blog, and in some cases even my Instagram. Plus I'm sneaking in a few photos from May from my hen do (bachelorette party).

JUNE

We celebrated one year of me living abroad by going out for drinks and tapas. It was one of our best date nights yet!

We spent a lot of evenings in our back garden, roasting mallows, playing games, eating dinner al fresco. It was lovely.

My younger sister came to visit towards the end of the month. We spent time around Birmingham, but then we took her to Oxford, Blenheim Palace, the Cotswolds, and Cotswolds Lavender. I still haven't blogged about Blenheim Palace. But I will!

JULY

We kicked off July with a BBQ in our back garden and I made my annual American Flag cake for an early Fourth of July celebration.

On the 5th, we flew to Colorado, my first time back since moving. Our time in Colorado was busy and so much fun. I got to catch up with friends and family and eat all my favourite foods. My sister cut my hair at her salon and it was such a joy to see her in her element. I went back to Pure Barre for a class, we did a bit of exploring in Colorado, and I met an Instagram friend, now real life friend!

We were back to celebrate my younger brother's wedding and we had a great time! (Photos by Sarah Hill Photography, dress via Rent the Runway.)

The next morning, we got up to road trip to Wyoming and Idaho, hitting a few bucket list items for me like visiting Jackson Hole, seeing the Grand Tetons, and glamping!

Back in the UK, we received the rest of our wedding registry, including what we had purchased using gift cards. It was so exciting to finally have everything after picking it out last spring!

I won the Harry Potter Friday Forty, which meant I could purchase two tickets for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child in London for the following week. We drove down to London for the day to see both parts and had a great time! It was positively magical.

AUGUST

The first weekend in August, we drove up to Scotland for a bit of a Drake family reunion. We stayed at an incredible stately home and even though we didn't have much time there, we had a lovely time exploring the nearby island of Gigha, spending time with Luke's family, and just relaxing.

When we got back, it was time to celebrate my 28th birthday. For lunch, we had what we affectionately call Chick-Faux-Le, which is chicken strips and chips (fries) from a fried chicken place near us called Rooster House with the Chick-Fil-A sauce we've imported from the States. That evening, Luke surprised me with a chocolate cake with candles, a bouquet of my two favourite flowers, tickets to the Harry Potter studio tour (we're going in December), and dinner out to a sushi place in town where we celebrated his 28th birthday in December. We ended the night eating chocolate cake in bed while watching Parks & Rec because that's how you do it when you're 28.

I went to London to meet up with my former boss Shalisa who was in town for business. We had breakfast at Farm Girl Cafe in Notting Hill and caught up with all the exciting things going on for both of us. Later that morning, I went to Biscuiteers in Notting Hill for cream tea with another Instagram friend turned real life friend, Gennean. It was a great morning, even though it was the first time I've ever missed a train!

We went to our friends wedding near Liverpool. It was so much fun and it was my first British wedding! I wore a hat! The groom wore a morning suit! It was at a gorgeous manor house! It was such a lovely day and we were so happy to be there to celebrate with Mark and Chantal.

Last weekend was a three day weekend, with Monday being the Summer Bank Holiday. While we had a lazy weekend, we took advantage of having Monday off and drove down to Blenheim Palace outside Oxford to spend the afternoon. I'm working on a post soon recapping that visit and when we went with Sam in June.

*I know autumn doesn't officially start for another few weeks.

Header photo by Sarah Hill Photography.