We do all the same things that everyone else does: cook-outs, barbecues, fireworks, etc. But July 4th also means a little something more because, almost inevitably, someone's friend or colleague isn't there. He or she is overseas, on a deployment, away from home, and unable to enjoy the festivities. And maybe it is exactly for that reason that the men and women that are home really like to "live it up" on July 4th, to celebrate with their friends and family while they can, because who knows if they will be around to do it next year.
Bo and I woke up bright and early to get everything ready the party. We started by decorating the house (Thank you Dollar Tree - we got all of the decorations, plates, napkins, etc. for under $30!).
Bo hung up a couple of American flag banners.
Then he hung up the obligatory (albeit snazzy) Navy flag!
Go Navy! Beat Army!
I placed festive centerpieces around the house.
Bo made 25+ hamburger patties.
Isn't he a cutie...even when I catch him off guard?!
Do you think we have enough buns?!
Then it was time to get ready! I wore a blue and white striped dress (although the stripes are so thin that the dress looks grey in this picture) with red toenail polish, red lipstick, and a red bracelet. Patriotic attire at its most comfortable. :)
And then everyone started to arrive!
We ended up having over 25 people at the party...
...definitely fun, but also definitely crowded!
It's during times like these that I am very grateful to be renting an open floor-plan home.
Lola had lots of fun too!
She even reconnected with an old friend: Hiroshi!
Hiroshi and Lola go way back. A few months ago, Hiroshi and Lola dug a tunnel (together, mind you) underneath our fence so that he could come over and play. One Sunday morning I let Lola out to go "poddie", and - a few minute later - when I returned to let her back into the house, suddenly there were two dogs in our backyard! Since then we have filled in the tunnel, but now Hiroshi has found a hole in the fence. I think that it is only a matter of time before he and Lola figure out a way to let him into into our backyard again.
Sneaky little puppies... ;)
(Undoubtedly) convening over their master plan.
Bo was grill master for the afternoon. He did a great job with the burgers and hot dogs - everyone raved about how delicious they were - but God bless him I think he sweat through two shirts in the process!
Note to self: grilling in the outdoors, with no shade in sight, for an hour, in over 100 degree temperatures is not the ideal situation for a July 4th cookout!
Thankfully he had lots of fellow Navy boys to keep him company!
Meanwhile, the girls were smart enough to stake their claim on the one shady spot in the yard!
Bo was worried that we wouldn't have enough food, but man was he wrong!
We had food galore, including:
- macaroni and cheese;
- pasta salad;
- Caprese salad;
- ham balls;
- chips and dip;
- TWO apple pies;
- Funfetti cake;
- TWO fruit pizzas; and
- vegan brownies that were out. of. this. world. delicious!
Needless to say, we had more than enough food to feed the masses (and Bo might be eating left-over hot-dogs for a week)!
There was quite a line for the food! In fact, our kitchen reminded me of standing in line at school for lunch in the cafeteria...hehehe!
Everett took his first steps on July 4th (five total)!
I can hardly believe that he is the same baby that fit into a pumpkin less than a year ago!
Babies grow up too fast!
After eating, the boys went outside to play KAN-JAM!
So what's KAN-JAM?!
Being the athletes that they are, Bo and his partner Garrison won four games in a row.
Question of the Day:
What did you do for this year's 4th of July?!
Ally and Bo