Fourth of July Festivities

At some point in adulthood, I realized that I love the Fourth of July.  It encapsulates everything good about summer: cooking out on the grill, gathering with family and friends, playing bocce ball and corn hole, and catching fireflies as dusk settles. 

And did I mention the overwhelming emphasis on fire?  Fire pits!  Fireworks!  Lighting sparklers on fire!   Fire is a highlight of the day.  This suits me just fine considering that I'm as bad as a guy when it comes to pyrotechnics.

Yes, I love the Fourth of July, right down to my American flag drinking glasses that my parents picked up years ago at a gas station.

Essentially, I was in my element yesterday. After a long morning of rain, the weather cleared up so the kids (my daughters, niece, nephew, and neighbors) could play outside with my brother's new puppy.

Soon their collective attention turned to catching toads, which logically progressed to racing their toads across the corn hole table.  First toad to leap in the hole wins!  (To my knowledge, there was only one toad casualty.)

My youngest daughter discovered a nest of newly born bunnies,

and the kids explored the waterfall along the side of our yard.
Best yet, both sets of grandparents joined us to celebrate.

As we cleaned up after dinner and darkness fell, we scrambled to find the radio station that synchronizes with our town's firework display, just like we do every year, and then settled onto our blankets and lawn chairs to watch the night sky light up.

Oh yes, I love the Fourth of July.  Always will.
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