Until last year, we never really did a lot for the fourth of July.  I’d grill something and we’d make some devilled eggs. I think we took a walk through a few city celebrations.  Last year, we did our first celebration with our lifegroup (small group from church) and we had such a fantastic time that the kids were wanting our pledge that we’d do it again before we left the parking lot. So this year was part deux, and now it’s just a given that we’ll do it every year for the rest of our lives, according to the kids.  The only thing we don’t want to repeat are the broken arms (Sophia’s last year on the bike ramps, and Eli’s this year on the playground).  Next year we’ll have someone sign up to bring a big roll of bubble wrap to the potluck.

We scarfed down snacks and watched the kids on the playground.  The moms did the wave every time the kids cycled by on the loop.  The guys crammed meat on the grill and cooked happily together.  Lucky the dog was not so luckily kid handled.  Baby Adalynn was passed around.  Shawn let everyone give the water bottle rockets a whirl. The volleyball net was put to good use.

At the end, we packed up and went back to our house where the kids were served hot chocolate with whip and patriotic sprinkles (thanks to Auntie Meghan, of course!).  The dads (big boys playing with fire) had a grand show of the goodies they picked up that morning and the kids got to do a few rounds of sparklers, which somehow look more like torches in the pictures than sparklers.

It makes me immeasurably happy to see our kids growing up with good family friends and the sweet camaraderie at the end of days like this warms my heart.