Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Independence Day 2014

One thing about the Fourth of July that you can count on is that it will be hot.  Especially in Utah.  It was a sizzler over there.  The morning was bearable until about 10:30 am.  The first thing we saw when we looked out the window was this flag in front of the house.  The Young Men and Women of the Church line the streets with American flags nearly every holiday that has anything to do with patriotism.  This is the way they raise funds for their special activities.  They do it for free but ask for donations from the home owners on a voluntary basis.  It is a winner. It use to be just the Scouts but now the Young Women participate as well which makes it easier on everyone.  Connor was on morning detail, getting up at 5:30 am to line the streets.  That in itself is great for all the teens to get up that early.  He put the one up you see above right in front of their house.  It is quite a sight when you step out and look up and down the street.

Provo is known for their Fourth of July Celebrations.  They have hot air balloons on years when it is not too hot early in the morning.  Over 70 degrees and the balloons will inflate but not ascend.  Bummer this year, too hot that early already.  But the City has plenty to keep families happy.  There is a big parade, a Freedom Festival, Stadium of Fire at BYU Stadium at night and probably a lot more activities I am not aware of as a visitor.  And of course the fireworks are fabulous.  We decided to pick just two activities so we went to the Freedom Festival and the fireworks.

The Freedom Festival was packed pretty early.  We arrived about 10:30 and left  after about an hour and a half.  It was just too hot and crowded so when the kids were done, none of us protested.  

A little group photo of Gramma and Grampa with the kids.
This was just as we were leaving~broiled to perfection.

Grampa likes the cooking booths so
 we stopped in there for a minute. 
 Here the grandkids are looking on.  
Connor, Owen, Aynslee, Zachary.
Missy is standing right next to Connor.

Loved being able to see the steeple on the 
new Provo Temple still under construction after the fire
that gutted the Tabernacle a few years ago.  
The Festival was just across the street
so when the crowd got to be just too much
you could look up to this and feel relief.

This was my favorite part of what the festival offered. 

They played some amazing Blue Grass music under a tent that had chairs to sit down and relax.  Awesomeness like only a "Hot Gramma" can fully appreciate. Hehehe!

I though the best part of the Freedom Festival in general was the sense of community and old-fashioned fun it engendered.  They had lots of vendors selling food and and merchandise and the mingling was good.  I am not a fan of big crowds but this was a gentle crowd.  No offensive language, no people there to cause a problem, no loud personal music, no smoking or drinking.  Just normal, everyday people out with their families enjoying themselves.  That is a freedom we don't have in a lot of places anymore and it was refreshing.

As we were leaving the Freedom Festival we saw this guy. 
 I'm telling ya, this town does it up right! 
Who among us has a handcart?

We went home and chilled and had lunch and watched National Treasure with the kids in the nice cool basement family room.  That was great.  We had a wonderful dinner and Chris grilled salmon and we ate out in their backyard under the umbrella and enjoyed the shady trees and the mountains so close and so big!

As the sun was starting to go down we packed up and went over to  the Temple lawn to watch the fireworks.

These last four shots and the one
 of us with the kids were taken by Chris. 
 This one is so pretty I think.
 I am loving the lavender hues of it.

It was the quintessential summer evening. No mosquitoes that I noticed. Warm but comfortable, pleasant people all around you and a spectacular bunch of glitter in the sky!  It ended all too soon.

pinterest photo

God Bless America
The Land of the Free Because of the Brave!


Sister Susie Says said...

I used to have a flag that hung from my garage. The plastic holder broke and would no longer hold the weight of the flag.

There are so many lakes here in Florida, that just about every one of them has fireworks going off! I can sit in my back yard or the front yard and see the beauty of them without having to be in the crowds! If I were in the crowds, I would be as Jim, seeking out the food booths, ha!

You can go on YouTube and look for "The Punches Family" for Christian Bluegrass! They are great. Mom plays the bass "viola" (I think that's what is called), the two little girls play violins, one boy plays the guitar, the other plays the banjo, and dad plays the mandolin! What a blessing to hear them!

I know what you mean about being in crowds. With my bum knee I wouldn't last long! My lungs won't take the least bit of smoke (even that from the fireworks!) So, you did have a great crowd to be around!

I pray America continues to be the "Home of the Brave" and doesn't turn its back on Israel.
Love to you all, Susan