Widgets Magazine

Jul 6, 2011

Fourth of July Traditions

Just like all the other holidays, our family has built a bunch of 4th of July traditions over the years. One of those traditions is our annual fireworks show. We had lots of fun last Friday with Bossy’s family setting off fireworks in the front yard! Gamer is our resident pyromaniac, so we all just got to sit back and watch the show.

I’m not sure when we started the “licorice tradition,” but every year we have to buy a couple of bags of cherry Twizzlers to enjoy with our fireworks. This year Bossy even brought over a bag of black licorice just for me. I say “just for me” not because I’m selfish, but because I’m the only one around here who will eat black licorice. Oh, my sweetie might eat one once in a while as a carnival trick for the kids, but mostly they just make fun of me, reminding me that I’m the only person in the entire world who actually LIKES black licorice.

Anyway, Bossy works for DCFS now, and because of that she HAS to be a responsible person. Her own dad calls her a “baby snatcher” when she gets irritating, but I find it a little disconcerting to have to worry about what I might say to my own daughter…. Things like “Are you going to report me if I forget to put Scout in her booster seat during the 10-block trip to the grocery store?”

So Bossy and Gamer provided our traditional fireworks and the treats this year. Except that I noticed her new responsible self didn’t bring over any sparklers. Instead they brought glowsticks. Teach took some amazing pics of the kids playing with the glowsticks. Although I must admit that they did have fun with them, it just wasn’t the same as real traditional sparklers.

When I was a kid, sparklers (any kind of fireworks, really) were banned from our house. That’s because when my dad and his brother were kids, they nearly burned down their house one year while their parents were at work by throwing a sparkler up on the roof. Grandma and Grandpa always bought sparklers for us, but we had to go over to their house and light them. We loved sparklers even more because of the covert way we all ended up at Grandma’s (even Mom came) just so we could enjoy the fourth.

When the Gym Rat was 2 ½ and Bossy was 4, we did sparklers with my sister and her kids at their apartment in Orem. Her kids were almost exactly the same ages as ours except that she has two boys. So we were lighting sparklers and my sweetie had the four little ones line up in age order, that made Bossy second and Gym Rat third. As my sweetie lighted Bossy’s sparkler, she was so excited she turned around and walked straight into the Gym Rat. The sparkler caught him just below the eye and singed a nice little line across his cheek. He screamed in pain and I scooped him up and ran inside. Ice and cold water eased the pain some, but we were just grateful that it wasn’t a little higher or it might have taken out his eye.

 But did we learn our lesson? No. We still love sparklers. We love writing our names into the blackness of the night. We love the way they sizzle when the blackened sticks land in the cold bucket of water. We love the traditions of the 4th. Now this year we have…glowsticks. So I told you yesterday that we spent the fourth at my MIL’s house, camping in her backyard. After the parade, the kids brought all their candy and dumped it into her glass candy dish. Then while we were playing games later, they passed around the dish. By that point the kids had fished out all the Tootsie Rolls and all that was left was saltwater taffy. As my MIL handed me the bowl, I commented, “Oh, I like the black ones the best!” Ten pairs of eyes looked at me in disdain. My MIL chuckled, “Well, you can have them all. Nobody likes that kind!” And I guess nobody likes sparklers either…

"You can keep the licorice, Mom!"


Natalie Ockey said...

Your entry omitted the growing-up tradition of driving to Manti in the station wagon to see the 10 minute long 1-at-a-time fireworks show! Do you remember how we'd know it was the finale because they'd shoot 2 in rapid succession with no delay?


Sara Bell said...

I LOVE black licorice. =D

Katie said...

my mom is the only one in our family to like black licorice too, and we always make fun of her for it :)

Treasures Evermore said...

I LOVE cherry twizzlers...dh loves black. I also like grape.

Looks like you had a wonderful 4th of July.


Mom to Many said...

I love good black licorice. (read, soft..) It's great that no one will eat it. :o)

Debby@Just Breathe said...

I love black licorice too. Sounds like a great tradition and sounds like you had a lot of fun.


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