Monday, July 9, 2012

The Good Stuff

"I'm proud to be an American"

Yes, I love my country.  I love my freedom. 

I love the people that sacrifice to allow me to have it.  Honestly, I do, but I take it for granted.

364 days out of the year I usually take it for granted. But on 4th of July when the flags are lining the streets and there are hot dogs and hamburgers, and potato salad, and chips and pop lining every table from here to the next gazillion houses 

When the warm air cools the beads of sweat that form on my forehead 

When we grab our lawn chairs and play around outside from sun up to sun down and later still hearing pop and bang from miles around dressed in our best red, white, and blue

When we grab the best seat with the most amazing view of our starry sky and see amazing fireworks explode in the air....

That's when I feel the most pride. That's when I remember and savor every ounce of the blessings this country has afforded me.

And yes, I still get a little emotional. It seems to get worse every year as the boys get older and grow to love this holiday as much as I do, their dad does and as much as their grandpa did.

We spent the day around the house.   The boys playing and with the help of their dad shooting off little firecrackers. 

Waylon practiced taking pictures when I would let him have my camera.

He didn't do too bad.

Wyatt had to have a turn too.

We headed to a historic part of downtown in one of our neighboring towns on the 4th to watch professional fireworks.  The same fireworks we watched the year before. 

Weston got antsy and was throwing tiny lawn chairs around until he heard that first boom.

His eyes found me as fast as they could and his feet were soon to follow.  He couldn't reach me fast enough.  His legs, one on each side of mine.  His arms wrapped tightly over mine as I swallowed up his little body with my arms.  His eyes following every stream and soon his fears relaxed and he was in awe of what he was seeing.  Only to be reminded again as I let go to wipe the hair out of my eyes.  He would grab my arm and force it back as snug around his body as he could get it.  It was the longest he has sat still and quiet that I can remember.

Their eyes.  I love their eyes glowing with taking in memorable sights.  Things to remember for always.  Wyatt recalled how much this night was like Sandlot, one of his favorite movies from the time he was 2.  He kept running to me and saying what he loved the most.  The way they sprayed, the way they sounded, the way they sparkled.  "I love those.  I made up a new name for the big ones I like.  The Good Stuff, Mommy.  I call those the Good Stuff!"

Waylon sat in the stroller because it leaned back and he could have a better, more comfy view.  He was drumming along with the beat of the music and every once in a while he would catch my eye as his arms flung up in the air in celebration of "the Good Stuff". 

It was one of those nights when everything was just about as perfect as you could get it.  No one was fighting.  No one was yelling.  No one was mad.  No one was pouting.  Just smiles and sparkling eyes reflecting the amazing images in the sky in celebration of the country we love.  Everyone was taking in moment after moment and I found myself breathing in as much as I possibly could and loving absolutely every second of it.  That's what I call "The Good Stuff"! 


  1. Know how much I needed to read this post tonight?
    Very much.
    So chalk full of gratitude and happiness.
    Love. This.

  2. Love the photos and that we both had the idea to give our kids the camera. Having a husband who was in the air force gives me more of a reminder to be grateful for our freedom that I ever had before we were married.



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