Tuesday, August 27, 2013

It's about time...4th of July!

Last year,  I told myself I was not going to get up early and do the parade because we always stay up late on the 4th and it is too much for the little ones. I couldn't resist though...we went to the parade.  (Minus Ryan)  I was glad we did.  

Here is the crew this year...

Annie and Luke with Isabelle

The kids like the sit right on the street so they can collect lots of candy and coupons for us!

The adults hang back and enjoy the show.

This year Abigail was even in the parade!  She had a big cheering section of cousins.  

Post-Parade we always head over to Grandma's for a BBQ/Splash Party-
someone was a little excited.  

Grandma brought back the giant slip-n-slide from last year.  We had a little less participation from the adults, but the kids sure had fun.  

Ryan and I made homemade ice cream like we always do.  (Triple Berry this year.)  
James is taking a quiet moment to enjoy the deliciousness of it. 

My nieces are all growing up and they are turning into pretty little things I must say. 

Pretty with a bit of sass on the side. 

I think the new hit at Grandma and Grandpa's house is the sandpit. Keeps the little ones busy for hours. I might need one of these. 

Poor Ryan, this summer has not been a summer of leisure for him I am afraid.  He is working nonstop and wasn't even able to take a long break on Independence Day!  Lots of work is a good thing, but also stressful and usually means no sleep/lots of cankers for this guy.  We sure do appreciate all his sacrifice for us! (I think he actually might have been taking a break here with a nice little game of cards on his phone.)  :)

My Mom whipped up same fancy-dancy drinks that we learned how to make in Relief Society.  Basically, you put lots of ice in your cup.  (Sonic ice is best.)  Then you pour your first colored drink on the bottom.  The trick is that the drink on the bottom has the highest SUGAR content.  The second layer is your drink with the second most sugar.  The last layer is usually sugar-free something or other.  This is a great idea for gatherings and you will be sure to impress your guests! The color/flavor options are endless!  Just check the grams of sugar on the outside of your drink containers. 

More slip-n-slide.  Why does this run look so painful?  


Do your gatherings ever look like this?  Instagram, texting, games, the ways to interact are endless!  (Don't worry...I am just as guilty.)  You can't tell but all four pictured here have a device in their hands. 

 What happened to laying in the grass and discovering the world outside?  

Well, I guess they did, because they found this beauty near Grandma's garden I believe. 

The snake might have been the highlight of the afternoon. 

Michael and Luke are always at it.  Sometimes I think they live to endlessly torment each other.  

And of course, we had A LOT of really yummy food to eat. 

We had plans to watch the fireworks with some friends. Heidi and her family decided to join us.  However, plans changed with all the chaos that usually exists around the river in Idaho Falls on the 4th of July.  (FYI, think that Idaho Falls is just another small town celebration on the 4th of July?  Think again.  We have the largest fireworks show west of the Mississippi.)  Travis found us a new spot to view the fireworks from and I think it was the best spot I have seen as far as seeing the fireworks up close and HUGE.  (Scenery and atmosphere didn't get such a high grade.) 

Annie with Aunt Heidi, waiting for the show. 

Sophie munching on some of the Subway we picked up for dinner. 

When it finally was dark and we thought the fireworks were about to start, these two got SO excited.  

Sophie kept jumping up and down.  The fireworks start after 10pm, so it is a really late night.  (And remember, we go to that really early parade. )

This year there was a tragedy on the river right before the fireworks were to begin.  It is so beautiful sitting along the Snake River and the Falls, but it always makes me nervous with the kids.  I am actually surprised nothing bad has happened in past years.  There were tons of police, helicopters, and emergency vehicles surrounding the river and they were holding off the fireworks in hopes of a happy ending.  We waited and waited.  We would get periodic updates on the radio stations that carry the program.  They asked everyone to turn off their cell phones because law enforcement were having trouble communicating due to EVERYONE talking on the cells during this time.  They asked for everyone to pray.  

Some people prayed, and some also played games to pass the time.  

About an hour later, they decided to start the program.  (Yes, it is a program here.  The half hour or so of grand-finale type fireworks are choreographed to patriotic music that everyone is playing on the radio. )  It is awesome!  Unfortunately, it was just too late for the girls.  They both fell asleep and missed the fireworks all together.  Here some pics of us before everyone konked out. 
 (Can you see how tired Ryan is in that picture? His eyes are getting glazed over from one of his many all nighters he has pulled this summer.) 

Waiting for the show.  (And praying for the poor young man that fell in the river. He was found later that night.  So sad.)

And one last picture of the day...Sophie hiding.  
She found herself a candy bar and is making sure no one discovers her treasure.  I like the dirty look she is casting for me looking her way. 

Even though the 4th of July was over a month ago...I can't say how grateful I am to live in this country.  Such a great holiday to celebrate our Independence and be grateful to be Americans!  

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