Saturday, July 4, 2009

It's Independence Day!

As a young child the 4th of July was probably one of my favorite holidays. This is because we always went to my Grandparent's house that lived on the canal in Washington. They always made it a day to remember. The holiday usually included a watermelon seed spitting contest, looking for pennies with drilled holes on the beach (background: my Grandpa would always throw like 100 pennies on the beach and drill a single hole in 4 of them. If we found the penny with a hole it was worth $20. This was a good way to keep kids busy so parents could socialize.) We would also buy tons of fireworks at the local firework stands. Usually my dad would take us and we would buy the basic tube and balls system along with some fun kid fireworks like parachutes, pagodas, sparklers, and popits. He would then say that we were not buying any more fireworks and we would go home. About an hour later, after talking with my uncles, he would decide to go back to the stands to get some more. After around 3 trips to the firework stand we were set for a night of pyrotechnics with my dad as the head pyro. Then we would have a nice crab or some other kind of fresh seafood dinner and begin the set up. This included tents outside on the lawn for the kids to sleep in, a bonfire on the beach (once the tide went down) and lots of hotdogs, marshmallows, and even oysters for the adults. Once the sun went down it was time for the show while we worked on our bonfire snacks. Thankfully in all those years there were no major injuries or fires, although one year my uncle took a row boat out to rescue a parachuter and forgot to put the plug in the boat. Needless to say, he was about ankle deep in water before he made it back to shore with the parachuter. Finally we would end the night playing cards and talking over smore's. It was the best.Unfortunately in Arizona there are no fireworks to be bought, no canal water to smell, no fresh fish to eat, and no dad to risk his life to create a good show. But we made due. We started by watching the hot dog eating contest which we like to watch every year. Not only is it totaly discusting but it is so intriguing and funny that I am addicted. Then we had a few family friends over for food, pool fun, walleyball, and games. We even got to see some fireworks from the local church. It wasn't the same as the celebrations in Washington but it was still a good time. Jackson didn't make it to the fireworks (too much fun that it wore him out) but then again last year he slept through all the firework fun in Washington so I don't think he will be able to enjoy the big booms until next year.

**** I also just wanted to say that I am so grateful for all those people who are currently fighting for our country and other countries to have the same luxuries that we get to enjoy everyday.

4 comments:

JILLC said...

What a great post. Geesh I wish I could go home with you for a July 4th like that! Does anyone still carry on that tradition or has it died out? Maybe someday you can start one out here for your own kids and friends??? (MINUS THE BEACH THAT IS! Will have to use Sand box or the playground! LOL)

jor said...

Cute story about your dad the pyro :)What fun memories! Isn't that hotdog eating contest disgusting :)

Jessica Stoker said...

The tradition has changed a bit. People get older, kids change and lose that magic they found in traditions, but now that new kids are in the picture I hope to keep some of the same traditions as I had when I was young. Traditions are important. They are a hint to the past that can only be revealed through living them.

Erica said...

Good reminiscing Jess! Put a smile on my face. I have photos of of our seed spitting contests. :) A bunch of kids with red faces from the watermelon. Love the story about Uncle Tim going back to buy more fireworks, ha! Love you see you soon when you get to WA!