We love America

Happy 4th of July to everyone! We hope you enjoyed the day with family and friends and celebrated this great country we live in.

Before I get into the fun stuff....let me just say how blessed I feel to live in the United States. It's not without it's problems (or complaints from our little family at times), but it truly is a great nation. It was founded by inspired men. And it remains a "great" country from it's people who value their freedoms. We sang America the Beautiful in church on Sunday, and whenever we get to the 3rd verse, I always get a emotional. The words are beautiful. And it wasn't until 9/11 happened that those words really hit me strong. I can't sing them without thinking of all the wonderful "heroes" who fight (both literally and figuratively) for our country:

O beautiful for heroes proved
In liberating strife.
Who more than self their country loved
And mercy more than life!....

I guess I'm proud to be an american! May God continue to bless this great country!

Okay, and now on to the partying...
As always, 4th of July is a big holiday with my family. It's full of fun games, swimming, and lots of red, white, and blue.
The kids started off the day decorating their bikes for a parade at the church(and enjoying the annual pancake breakfast). Then while we women worked away in the kitchen preparing all sorts of food...Casey, my Dad, and Brinton spent 3 hours filling up water balloons in the backyard. Lucy couldn't resist joining the fun. She spent an hour picking each one up and plopping them back in the bucket.
When all were filled, they had 600 water balloons! (aka water gernades).

We invited our friends Sarah, Darin, and Chloe Ragozzine down for the day. We're so glad they came. The more the merrier! (or the patrioter?)
Once everyone was here, we drove about 50 yards to the park, set up chairs and watched the Water War begin. Casey, Eric, and Darin each took some hard hits. But they were dishing out some good ones too.

The audience agrees however that team Bryan, Scott, and Brinton probably won the fight

Of course there were some foot soldiers running around trying to steal amo. But Casey let them know who was in charge We all cheered-on the teams from the safe and shady sidelines.

After the water balloon war, came the Home Run Derby at the baseball field. Sarah and I took the girls home for naps (hallelujah). But we hear that everyone had fun at the ballpark.
Then...time to cool off at the pool! (Yea for HOA parks). Lucy was still asleep, so we left her at the house but Sarah and Darin brought Chloe down and she loved the little kiddie pool. It's the perfect height for them.

Back at the homestead, dinner was in the works. We had a great array of salads, fruit, baked beans, homemade bread, and the highlight....shrimp boil! If you've never had one, here's how it works: boil red potatoes, carrots, corn on the cob in a HUGE pot with some cajun spices. Then add the shrimp for the last 5-8 minutes till it turns pink. (It takes 3 men to lift the pot, but we like to make them feel maaanly.)
Dump everything out on the table and everyone takes what they want! And there's your Shrimp Boil!
Saunja made some yummy cocktail sauce to go along with the shrimp. And everything was just tasty.

Of course before we ate, we had our little patriotic program. My mom dressed in her annual George Washington costume.
Liesl recited the preamble to the Constitution.
And Jeremy led us all in the Pledge of Allegiance.

Then we ate, chatted, and ate some more until the sun went down. The kids had tons of fun playing in the backyard and riding in the wagon.

Here's Lucy in the her cute 4th of July dress, looking like she's gonna hike a football. Casey will be so proud.
There were all sorts of yummy desserts. I made homemade strawberry ice cream for the first time and it turned out pretty good. I've got to work with the recipe a little and I'm excited to try other flavors. But homemade strawberry ice cream sure is refreshing after a long hot day. Here's a not so great picture of me and Casey, but I love Meredith's face in the background:
Everybody hung out till about 9:30 and watched a few fireworks from my parent's backyard. Then it was time for the Willards to hit the road. I'm working today and tomorrow, so we drove up to Parry and Linda's house so Linda can watch Lucy while I work. Thank you Linda!

And Happy 4th of July to everyone!
We had a GREAT day.


The Willards said...

What a fun day. It sounds like your family has some great family traditions on the 4th of July. How fun. Lucy looks so cute in her dress too. It would have been fun to get them together for a cute picture.

Tony Cannon said...

Nothing like a little Revolutionary War reinactment set to water balloons. That sounds like the single more fun thing ever.

dietcokegrrl said...

OK--I'm jealous of all the 4th of July fun. I think we may have to invite ourselves along next year! I LOVE a good water balloon fight!!

Sara said...

we are so sad we missed out on all the Suman fun! I went out and played catch with Mark because he was craving a good fourth of July baseball game... unfortunately our small fam of 5 doesn't quite make for much of a game! Thanks for sharing all the pictures!!

Saunja Lacameena said...

Long live the red, white, and blue! I love being able to live in America. What a great blessing it is.

Sassy Polka Dot said...

Look what I just happened upon!! :) Great memories :)