We had a pretty low-key 4th this year. We started the morning off with breakfast at IHOP, and the boys were even somewhat behaved. Lucas did peek through the glass and flirted with the ladies in the booth next to us, but I don't think they minded too much. There was a fireworks stand conveniently located in the parking lot, so we headed over to take a look. I'm not usually a fan of buying fireworks (to me, it's the same thing as lighting my money on fire and watching it burn), but we ended up buying a small package of fireworks, some sparklers, and some poppers for the boys. I guess I have a hard time saying no to my kids. :)
In the past, Cole's entire family has gotten together for dinner and fireworks, but one of his brothers has moved away, one was on vacation, and another made different plans for the day. So, the big family gathering consisted of us, Cole's parents, and his oldest brother's family.
Grandma and Papa had sent some cute 4th of July shirts for the boys to wear, so we got them all dressed and festive and headed to Gammy & Bumpy's house. The big boys "helped" Gammy work in the yard while Cole helped Bumpy fix some sprinklers. The sprinkler fixing created a big mud puddle in the middle of the yard, and the boys couldn't resist splashing around in it.
After having dinner with Cole's family, we went to my sister's house to light off our fireworks. There are a lot of firework enthusiasts in her neighborhood, so it sounded a bit like we were in the middle of a war zone. Lucas quickly learned what was making all the noise:
We set chairs up in the driveway to light our humble fireworks and let the boys do the sparklers. Kyle was (understandably) nervous at first about holding a burning, sparking stick, but Lucas showed absolutely no fear.
During our little fireworks show, we got the scare of our lives. One of the neighbors down the street didn't prop up one of their aerial fireworks very well, and it tipped over and shot down the street and exploded about 25 feet away from us. It even set the dried, crusty lawn of a vacant house on fire! Cole and a different neighbor ran to put it out while Stephanie and I grumbled and cursed. No one in the neighborhood was hurt in the incident and the guy did come over to see if we were all right...but this event further solidified my opinion that aerial fireworks do NOT belong in the hands of laymen.
Even though our lives were endangered (wink wink), it ended up being quite a nice holiday.