So in celebration and recognition of this rather incredible feat on my part of editing all the pictures, I am sitting at my computer at 12:48 am with a bag of chocolate, to try and and come up with a coherent blog post that would actually be interesting enough for people to read.
Because lets face it, as ridiculously adorable as my children are, you probably wouldn't come back here every day just to hear me say, "my kids are ridiculously adorable."
Some people just can't handle truth like that.
Our original 4th of July celebration plans had not initially included the parade. Call us party poopers if you want but sometimes, fighting the crowd just ain't worth the hassle.
But I got some last minute insider information on where to park and where to sit. It's all about having friends in high places. Knowing people who have a float in the parade every year definitely has it's perks.
We're moving up in the world.
So we made a quick last minute decision, threw the kids into the car (only somewhat literally) and headed down.
It was the first time in my life I've ever sat near the beginning of any parade and let-me-tell-you, I will never be able to go back.
It would be like settling for tootsie rolls after have Cadbury chocolate. It's just... wrong! At the start of these things people are so liberal with their coupons and treats and whatever else they are giving out. We came home with so much stuff it was down-right ridiculous.
And the kids had a blast.
I trained them early-on to shout out "Candy!" whenever someone would walk close enough to hear them.
They got really good at screaming it out. So much so that I soon regretted every teaching them to do such a thing.
I think their favorite part of the parade was when someone dropped two giant bags of candy which burst open and spilled everywhere.
I think my children showed incredible restraint in this intense moment. I was so proud.
We came home with a ton of candy though.
I suppose this may not look like much, but this is a huge jar, and is holding the other half of what was not eaten at the parade.
We still have candy left over from the parade in this thing!
Please... come take it away.
After we survived the parade, we came home to get ready for the evening. We had invited a couple of families over for dinner.
Honestly, I think Hubby did that just so he could show off his new baby. Or... he wanted to invite people over so he had an excuse to go get a new baby.
Either way, he spent the entire afternoon assembling his new pride and joy.
The kids also thought the new grill was down-right awesome as well. Not because of the grill itself of course, but rather because it came in a big box, so they spent the afternoon trying to assemble a fort.
But sadly, we ran out of tape.
The kids were devastated.
As for me, I was attempting to minimize embarrassment by cleaning my house to give off the appearance that I had everything under control and that this clean thing comes naturally and that my house always looks like this!
But then one of the kids left the laundry room door open.
Totally gave me away.
I was also down-right embarrassed to realize I didn't have a single patriotic decoration to my name. It was a horrifying realization actually.
So I did the best I could with my construction paper.
Construction paper is my friend and has saved my bacon on more than one occasion.
You should have seen my wedding!
I even fooled myself into thinking I was so clever for making these drink cups for all the kids out of these old juice containers that I had been saving.
Don't look at me like that! At the rate my kids go though cups in a day, these make excellent back-up cups!
Still, don't let all those cute Pintresty ideas fool you.
These things are horrible if you are drinking soda because of the carbonation build-up that sends the soda dripping out of the straw.
Not that it stopped Claira from loving every minute of them.
And soon the party was rockin'!
Well, it was at least wet.
One of our friend's newest addition. Isn't she adorable?
When it finally got dark enough, the sparklers that someone had brought were busted out!
The problem was none of them would stay lit!
Poor Claira was so excited, then bummed, then excited, then bummed that the sparklers would work, then go out. Then work, then go out.
Luckily the glow-in-the-dark sticks saved the day.
By this time we were just too dang tired to try and go see the big, fancy fireworks. So, we let the kids watch a few that people were lighting around the neighborhood then promptly went to bed.
Just like I am going to do right now... at 1:48am.
Still, the day was awesome.