This is one of my very favorite holidays, especially here in New England. Back in the day, when we lived on the North Shore, we would typically go to the parade in Manchester-by-the-Sea. This is a wonderful, small town parade, with marching bands, homemade floats, kids riding bicycles, candy being thrown from antique cars, Revolutionary War soldiers (with loud guns), and LOTS of fire engines. People line the streets in their folding chairs, decked out in red, white and blue, waving flags of all kinds. It is a ton of fun, and one of the best things about living in this area. I love to get there early with a box of donuts, a nice hot coffee and wait for the parade to begin. We always were able to get prime parade watching real estate right in front of the cemetery. The old gravestones provided pre-parade entertainment, as we would search for the headstone with the earliest date.
One year in particular sticks in my memory. I was hugely pregnant with either Clayton or Theo, and we had spent the day at Singing Beach with our friends. These friends were living in the top floor of a HUGE mansion in Manchester, and basically had the run of the place, as the owner was away. When it got dark, we headed up to their apartment for food and to wait for the fireworks. I remember that Walter got bitten by some kind of sand flea and had tiny bites ALL OVER his back. And I remember sitting in their tiny (but so cute) third-floor kitchen, sweating, drinking Corona and feeling so heavy. We tried to go outside to watch the fireworks, but were positively eaten alive by mosquitoes, so we retired inside. I know it doesn't sound very pleasant by my description of it, but I remember that time with fondness. Matt and Caroline, if you're reading, do you remember that year?
Another Independence Day we celebrated in Maine with my mom and dad. I made Firework hats for the kids, and they were too embarrassed to wear them. So my mom and I wore them to the parade in Naples and had a great time!
Today is cold and rainy. It doesn't really seem like the Fourth of July. We didn't go up to the parade, and we're not going to Castle Island, like we did last year. The boys just decorated their room with American flags and Clayton and Theo say they are going to do their own parade in our house. That's the spirit, boys!
I, for one, am going to make oven fried chicken (my mom's recipe; delish!), strawberry roll cake (lots of berries and fresh whipped cream), corn on the cob, veggies and dip and root beer floats! I also bought Doritos (which we NEVER buy) and cans of Mug root beer, just for a holiday treat.
What's your favorite thing about the Fourth of July?
Have a great day of celebration, everyone! Look for more posts over the holiday weekend!