Thursday, July 6, 2017

4th of July 2017

Just as it has for years, our 4th of July started with a Firecracker 5k, more on it to come later. Actually the first 5k I ever ran was on the 4th of July! It had rained overnight and rained off and on that morning so Carter enjoyed playing in puddles while we waited for the medal ceremony after the race. From the race we went to McDonald's for breakfast and enjoyed hot chocolate and coffee with our breakfast. We were all wet and the temperature was actually pretty cool in the low 70's so it was really nice to drink something warm. We spent the rest of the morning playing with sidewalk chalk on the porch since the sidewalks were wet and then Carter wanted to have an American flag parade. He and Elise walked up and down the sidewalk waving American flags from my mom's potted plants while I walked behind them playing patriotic music on my phone. After a couple treks up and down the sidewalk we went inside so Carter could gather more participants. I put one of Carter's patriotic shirts on Harper and she walked with us. Mom also joined us with her two dogs. Carter was super excited when one of our neighbors stopped on their porch to watch us and complimented him on his flag waving.
Walking to the car after the race. Those boots were filled with water!
Walking to the car after the race.
I also spent a lot of time trying to get a picture of the kids together in their patriotic gear!

It was worth it for the couple of really good pictures I got!
The kids playing with chalk.
Flag parade round 1.
Harper ready to join in the flag parade.
Flag parade round 2.
The whole group during our flag parade.
After naps Carter and Elise helped me make special red, white, and blue Funfetti cupcakes which we later decorated. Carter loved putting sprinkles on them and sticking the toothpicks down in the cupcake for adornment. Then we were off to pick out some more fireworks. Favorites from the night before included smoke bombs, snakes, a pooping dog, a chicken that laid an egg which was a balloon that blew up, parachutes, and fountains that didn't make noise. We had so much fun with fireworks and Carter loved sharing them with my parents' neighbors across the street. Thomas bought some artillery shells which were fun to watch. Carter caught a parachute by the bottom and it burned his finger but he didn't let that put too much of a damper on the night. He was even brave enough to hold a mini-Roman candle in his hand as it shot out the flaming balls. Ty held Elise while he did one and tried to get her interested in holding it with him but she didn't want to. I think that was mostly due to the smoke that was getting in her face.

Decorating cupcakes after naps.

Ty and Thomas lighting a lantern which was really cool.

Carter watching fireworks with his ear protection on.

Ty helping Carter shoot off a miniature Roman candle.

Elise helping Ty shoot off a miniature Roman candle.

This year we decided to let Carter stay up late enough to watch the city fireworks show. It didn't start until 10:00 so we knew he'd be up really late but were confident he could handle it and figured he'd enjoy it with his ear protection on to cancel out the loud booms. Mom stayed home since Elise was in bed while Ty, dad, and I took Carter out to watch fireworks. Thomas headed home around 8:00 and Jeremy had gone home on Sunday since he had class on Monday and Wednesday. When we pulled into the middle school parking lot where we always watched fireworks when I was a kid, Carter immediately struck up a conversation with a 4 year old boy and his 7 year old sister who were sitting in front of their car which was right next to ours. Carter told them his name and his sister's name and said she was at home in bed. The little boy told him his sister didn't want a little brother, she wanted a little sister. Carter told him he wants a little brother but they aren't married anymore and pointed to me and Ty. I told Carter we are still married and he said, "Oh yeah, they aren't pregnant anymore!" Carter loved playing with the kids so much that he was disappointed when the fireworks started because he wanted to continue playing with them. He sat on my lap for the first 5-10 minutes of the show and then moved over between our car and their car dancing in an attempt to get their attention. He's so funny! Even though he didn't watch the entire show, I was glad we allowed him to stay up late to see some of it. He handled it really well and went right to sleep when we got home. He was quite excited to wear his new 4th of July jammies from Oma and Opa again since I'd done laundry during the day. Both kids slept right through all the fireworks the neighbors were shooting off! Both the kids still woke up at their normal time the next morning after going to bed late the night before. I guess they were just really excited to head to their Gma and Gpa's house to visit with everyone including Uncle Paul, Aunt Amanda, and Wyatt who came from Florida! More on our visit to come later.
Carter ready to watch the firework display.
Ty, me, Carter, and dad watching the fireworks from the back hatch of the van.
Carter posing with fireworks in the background.

It was another wonderful 4th of July. I just love celebrating this amazing country we are lucky enough to live in and am proud to teach my children what that means! I am amazed when I look back at pictures from the previous years at how big both of my babies have gotten! I am also reminded how nice it is to be past the baby phase of life when I experience holidays with two toddlers. When we were shooting off fireworks I remembered being so tired in years past that it was work to get up off the steps and walk down to the sidewalk to light fireworks. I also remember difficult nights with babies waking and crying due to the noise of fireworks out their window. It is definitely nice to have two kids who play all day and wear themselves out to the point where they sleep on through all the noises going on around them! I treasure all those past memories but am so glad to be in the stage of life we are in now! Read about our 4th last year here, 2015 here, 2014 here, and 2013 here.

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