The 4th of July is one of my absolute favorite holidays of the year. Not only is it 5 days away from my birthday and during the summer when it's usually guaranteed to be great weather, but it's also a day to celebrate America and be grateful for everything that I often take for granted. And what better way to celebrate than with friends and family?
As a child, on the 4th of July, I loved going to the parade in the center of town with my family dressed up in my white t-shirt which I wore every year on this day specifically. It had a huge American flag on the front. I would always wear this shirt with my jean shorts. I'd have tons of beaded necklaces around my neck and an American flag in my hand. Since I'm a redhead I was truly red, white, and blue from top to bottom (red hair, white shirt, blue shorts). Get it?!?!
Oh, and don't forget about loads of sunscreen. This was always the day when I'd get absolutely fried from sitting in the sun all day. So you bet I was white as a ghost covered in sunscreen. But hey, I didn't care, because I was celebrating my favorite holiday.
It has long been a family tradition of mine to not only celebrate the 4th of July but also the 3rd of July. Ever since I can remember, every year, my family spends the 3rd of July at my grandparents' summerhouse in Plymouth, Massachusetts. We invite family and friends down for an all-day pool party and cookout. We hang out, have a good time, go to the beach, and enjoy this day that marks our independence as a country. My dad's best friend makes the best steak tips I've ever had with a secret marinade recipe. There are burgers grilling, salad tossing, and laughter in the air.
Once the sun goes down, there are celebrations on the beach with bonfires and fireworks. This is the only time of the year when I get to see fireworks, and I look forward to them every year. It's also the only time when fireworks are somewhat legal as they are enjoyed all over the United States during this special time.
This year is the second time in 21 years where I won't be celebrating the 3rd or 4th of July with my family and partaking in our ongoing tradition. This time around I am in London for the 4th of July, which is interesting, since it's not a holiday celebrated in the UK. As a proud American, I raise my glass to America today. We will be reunited soon!