Saturday, July 5, 2008

Happy Independence Day!

I hope that everyone reading this post had a good Independence Day!

Our holiday was a good one. Our family has fairly simple tastes; we don't have to do anything particularly grand to enjoy ourselves. Pretty much, just give me a little time off work, and let the whole family stay at home and just play (and work) together, and we're happy. We spent much of the 4th relaxing, gardening, playing in the yard--and, a little later, trying to explain to the kids a little about the meaning of the holiday. Of course, they're a little young, so we don't know how much of the message took. And it's not like we were particularly heavy-handed, either; a little of what we did just involved throwing in our video of Schoolhouse Rock, and playing the first several songs in the "America Rock" section. (And when the animation showed pictures of Independence Hall in Philadelphia, I was able proudly to declare to my kids, I've been there! I don't think they were very impressed.)

Anyway, we recently were given as a gift, an American flag with all the necessary hardware to mount it on the side of a house. Now, we've been homeowners for all of the last four-point-seven years, and--believe it or not--it had never occurred to us to get ourselves a flag before. But yesterday we pulled it out, installed the hardware, and proudly flew the flag for the first time.
There it is, in all its glory, with a very patriotic-looking Adrenaline Junkie in the background.

Speaking of which, after we got the flag up, Tonya wanted to get new pictures of everyone (except her. Somehow, we neglected to get pictures of her). So here's the Adrenaline Junkie up close.
Yup. Gonna have to buy a shotgun. I'll need it, starting in ten years or so.

And here's the Pillowfight Fairy. Now, this girl has entered the phase where she can't just smile at a camera and be done with it. Either it's a natural phase, or she's been reading too much Calvin and Hobbes lately; but any time the camera comes out, her face gets all goofy. The best we can hope to do is to get her to laugh at something when it's time for her picture to be taken. When she's laughing, she gives a natural-looking smile. Sometimes.
And for those of you who've been wondering what the Happy Boy aka. Omnivore looks like, here are a couple of good ones:
The thing about this last one, is that one can see something of his devious nature in those eyes. This is a kid you have to keep at least one eye on at all times, or you will suddenly start finding overripe plums in your laundry. This is the kid, after all, who once smuggled a Cheerio in his belly button.

Anyway, shortly after we took these photos, it was time to put the Omnivore to bed. Then it was time to take the two girls out to see the local fireworks display.

They took it better than I expected, I'm happy to announce. Last year, I only took the Pillowfight Fairy, and we sat probably closer than was wise. She spent the entire fireworks show with her face buried in my chest. After all the bright lights and sudden loud noises, she was looking a little like she was at risk for developing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

This year, on the other hand, she was able to watch the whole display, and to pick out her favorites. She definitively announced that she liked the ones that were red, white, and blue. Now, after the fact she did say that she never wanted to see another fireworks display ever again in her life. But, she was still perfectly happy to strike up very involved conversations with complete strangers as we left the place, explaining what she liked the most about it--and telling them what it was that her Daddy liked the most, too. She clearly took it better than last year.

Her sister was a little more scared, but not as bad as the Pillowfight Fairy was last year. I think it helped that we told her in advance that the fireworks would look just like her shirt (see above pictures to see what we meant).

Anyway, it was a good day. And I hope you and your family had a good holiday too.

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