1. We’re going to need some
2. We achieved about average
3. All about family
We used to have Fourth of July at my house every year, partly because our city allowed fireworks when all the surrounding areas didn’t. The main reason, though, is because I really hate to clean house.
Now, you might not see any relation at all between those two reasons, but I can explain it.
First of all, you have to realize that it’s all about family. There are five siblings among us, if you count Kenny, and five big holidays to host every year — Christmas, Thanksgiving, Fourth of July, Memorial Day, and Easter, one per person. You see?
Back at the beginning we drew lots to see which one of us drew which holidays, but over time it somehow developed that Mary Jane did Christmas because she was crafty and had a garage full of homemade declarations that needed to be displayed.
Susan took Thanksgiving because she liked the challenge of a new turkey stuffing every year. So far we’d tried a variety of things from apples to sage to oysters (that one didn’t go over too well) and none of us had gotten sick from it yet. One of these days we expect to find that she’s made something so new and interesting that we’re going to need some barf bags, but it will still be worth going to Susan’s because her pumpkin cream cheese pies are to die for.
Kenny always got Easter, and that’s all I’m going to say about that except that I think charging us each for a share of the Honeybaked ham is just a bit tacky.
Memorial Day’s always been special to Tom, so he picked that for his hosting duties. We knew not show up before noon because Tom spends the morning at Forest Glade Memorial Park making sure all the vets there have little flags by their markers. By the time he gets done there, half the day is gone and we know we’ll find Tom serenely stirring stew in the crock pot and setting out carrots and celery sticks because we grew up with carrots and celery sticks. That’s just the way it’s done.
So, as you can see, I came to Fourth of July by default all those years ago. For me it’s perfect, because I can set up tables and chairs in the yard and get my eldest boy Sammy to throw hot dogs and burgers on the grill. I wipe down the two bathrooms and vacuum just the front part of the house and so far nobody’s complained about my lack of housekeeping. I put out enough red white and blue streamers that my decorations achieve about an average with my neighbors, and a big family-sized Blowout Box of Red Devil fireworks carries the evening. Hot dogs and sparkly pinwheels. What more could anyone ask.
I don’t even serve carrot sticks.