We have had such a blast this Fourth of July! For one thing, this is Dave's first time in 8 years that he has had this day off. He has always worked either days or nights and was never able to relax and spend time with the families and/or watch a whole fireworks show! How thankful I am to have my husband with me this time! I am sure it sounds silly to some, but it never FEELS right when someone from our family is missing. Whether it's Dave at work, or Ashton at a sleepover, or someone's sick at home with Nan while we go out. Nevin and Nolan were both under the weather for part of the July 4th festivities. Thank goodness we had half a week of stuff planned, so they were able to join in the fun. Of course, they couldn't get sick at the same time, so they took turns!
July 3rd - On Thursday, Nevin was very sick. He had a fever and had been throwing up for the last day. Dave stayed home with him, and I took the kids over to Nan and Papa's for Monical's Pizza. When we were done eating, I went home with Nolan and Dave went back over to his mom's house to be with the big kids. I put the babies to sleep and had a few minutes of absolute silence. WOW....that was pretty cool. Dave and his mom and dad took the kids out in the back yard to watch the Turtle Run fireworks. Now this is a tradition. A tradition for Dave...his whole life. A tradition for our family....since 1998. Dave's parents live in the perfect spot. They have a couple acres so we drive the lawn mower (w/trailor) out back packed up with snacks, drinks, blankets, chairs, flashlights, and bugspray! We go out about 20 minutes ahead of time and get all set up. The kids run off some energy and wait on pins and needles until the show starts. Then the fireworks start.....the kids LOVE them! They will sit there and chat among themselves about their favorite ones/colors. We all snuggle together and usually each kid takes turns sitting on each adult's lap! Then once their over, we pack up and head out for the night. It is so much fun! I was so sad to not be there, but so happy that Dave could take part this time. The kids came home so excited telling me about every little detail. It was so cute!
July 4th - I am a HUGE sucker for traditions. So our norm on July 4th is....our neighborhood parade. We have a "little" neighborhood parade that is growing by leaps and bounds. I started taking the kids myself, because Dave would have to work, and then the next year had talked Dave's mom into going with me. The kids decorate their powerwheels...a Barbie Jeep and Dora 4-wheeler... and their bikes and wagons. This is so much fun for them! We meet one street over and walk a little over a mile to the "ending point". At the end, everyone gathers around and chit chats and they hand out the red, white, and blue popsicles to everyone. We have walked in extreme heat, rain, humidity...everything. This year it was PERFECT weather. We took Nolan and Nevin in their stroller with us. By this time, Nolan was getting a little blah. Even though they weren't feeling perfect, I think it was good for them to get out a little. We had a great time seeing neighbors, friends, and teachers that we haven't seen since school let out. The kids really like to be part of something like this. It gets bigger every year! This year we had a police car, firetruck, and a horse! People line up on the streets to see all the kids go by. I think it is great, especially for the older people that can't get out much. It's so nice they can go right out on their front lawn and see this parade of kids in their patriotic outfits!
Usually after the parade, we will go to Camp Assurance for the July 4th Rally. It kinda depends...sometimes we have headed straight to my parent's house. This year, we decided since the boys were a lil under the weather, we would just head home and let them nap before we went to Georgetown.
Around 4:00, we went down to my parents house for our annual July 4th family get-together. I LOVE this day. We grill out and have some crazy awesome food. Whenever my family gets together, there is WAY TOO MUCH food! We had pork chops, hamburgers, and hot dogs on the grill. We also had all kinds of GOOD homemade food- hashbrown casserole, potato salad, 5 cup salad, pasta salad, 7-layer salad...we like salads =) etc.... And yummy desserts - oreo dessert, texas sheet cake, chocolate chip cookies and so on. We are blessed with some excellent cooks in our family. After eating, we watched the kids ride Chance's go-kart and their bikes in the driveway. The little guys loved pushing their dump trucks and trying to keep up with the big kids! It was a little chilly...about 70's....this year, but the kids HAD to go swimming. Mom and Dad's pool is always in tip top shape with some new toys on the fourth! The kids lasted longer in the pool then I thought they would....big goosebumps, blue lips, and chattering teeth half the time! We got out and ate some more dessert and got on some dry/warm clothes and headed off to the fireworks. We rode (like always) in the back of Uncle Brody's truck. When we got there this year, we happened to park right next to one of my best friends, Kara. My girls LOVE her daughter, Addison, and Bryson and her son, Jacob, are BEST buddies! Needless to say, we had a blast and the fireworks were only half of the entertainment. Chance and Ashton were "rating" them on a 1 to 10 scale....sometimes being Simon Cowell! It was a blast! We headed back to Grandma's afterwards and put on our jammies and headed home.